Turkish Cypriot daily Havadis newspaper (03.11.16) reports that Mehmet Ali Talat, former Turkish Cypriot leader and chairman of the Republican Turkish Party (CTP), has proposed a “three zonal federation” in Cyprus. In an interview to Havadis radio and television, Talat argued that instead of occupied Morfou to be returned to the “south”, as the area of the Republic of Cyprus controlled by the government is described, it could be administrated by the federal government in case of a solution to the Cyprus problem and become a “third zone”.
Noting that the time to discuss the territory issue and not only the criteria has come, Talat claimed that there are many alternatives on this issue. He said that [the map] could be bi-zonal, it could be the Annan Plan map or some changes could be made to this plan. He argued: “Perhaps it will not be the map of the Annan Plan. What it will be? It will be a more straight line. Morfou will be in the area which will be administrated by the federal government. In this way, it will not be returned to the south on the one hand and thousands of people will not be forced to go away from there on the other hand. […] A new map is needed. Annan Plan’s line will become straighter. And it could be a straight line, by which 29,2% will remain in the Turkish Cypriot state. It may be a map in which the border will be the main road of Morfou-Nicosia and Nicosia-Famagusta”.

Describing his proposal as “a proposal protecting the inhabitants of Morfou and the Turkish Cypriots”, Talat argued that in order for a map to be accepted by the Turkish Cypriots, it must receive “open and clear support” by Turkey.

“At the moment Turkey says ‘by what right you are giving Morfou’, this plan will not pass from the referendum here”, he noted and added that “creative proposals” are needed in order for the Greek Cypriot side to accept them. He argued: “This is why I am putting forward the federal zone idea. In the worst scenario the line of the Annan Plan will become straight and both sides will accept it. That is, Morfou will be given, but those who made a development will continue staying there, but it will remain in the Greek Cypriot founding state. The Greek Cypriot side says that ‘I want more than the Annan Plan map’. The Turkish side says that it cannot be less than the Annan Plan. Therefore, we have been squeezed in the Annan Plan. This is the only way of getting out of this. If the federal zones are not accepted, we should discuss on how we could revise the Annan Plan map. […]”

Talat also said that he will raise the issue during their meeting with Turkish Cypriot leader Akinci on Friday.

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