The Political Bureau of the Central Committee of AKEL, in its session that convened yesterday, discussed the developments surrounding the Cyprus problem and concluded the following:
1. The Cyprus problem is on an extremely dangerous course that can lead to a new cycle of tension, instability and to the finalization of partition.
2. Turkey is becoming more aggressive and provocative every day. The drillings in the Cypriot Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) and the actions it is setting in motion for the colonialization of the enclosed city of Famagusta aim to create new fait accompli through force and illegal actions. The Turkish actions on Famagusta constitute a flagrant violation of the Resolutions of the Security Council of the United Nations and are justifiably provoking the indignation of the lawful inhabitants of Famagusta and the people as a whole. These actions come to add to the 45 years of occupation and division, to the ongoing colonization (of the occupied areas) and the systematic strategy for the economic, political and cultural assimilation of the Turkish Cypriot community. The goal is to create irreversible fait accompli.
3. Since the breakdown at the 2017 Conference at Crans Montana and thereafter, AKEL has been warning of the dangers that have been created by the new failure and the fact that Turkey was presented in the Report submitted by the Secretary General of the UN as relieved of responsibility on the Cyprus problem. AKEL promptly warned about what Turkey is doing today and called for action for the prevention of new fait accompli. AKEL from the very first moment called on the two leaders to focus on the resumption of substantive talks from the point they had remained at Crans Montana on the basis of the 2014 Joint Declaration, the convergences that had been recorded and the Guterres Framework. AKEL also submitted a comprehensive proposal on the natural gas issues that provided answers, with positions based on principles, to all that is raised on the part of Turkish Cypriots and Turkey.
4. Nevertheless, the President of the Republic has for a long time demonstrated contradictions and procrastination on the Cyprus problem, opening up issues that were already agreed and without convincing the Secretary General of the UN that he is truly ready for meaningful talks. The illusory impression was subsequently cultivated that the Trilateral Alliances and military co-operations forged with the US and Israel would shield the Cypriot EEZ from Turkish aggression. Then, the unrealistic aspiration that the EU would proceed to impose targeted measures against Turkey was also cultivated, ignoring the big economic and political interests of EU member states. More specifically as regards the case of Famagusta, the government ruling forces once again did not understand all that was happening and initially were about “communication games”.
5. Today, in the face of this situation, everyone should be realizing that the resumption of substantive negotiations on the Cyprus problem is the only way that can stop new fait accompli and pave the way, provided that Turkey consents, to a solution based on principles that will liberate and reunite our homeland, on the basis of a bi-zonal, bi-communal federation, with political equality as outlined in the Resolutions of the UN.
6. AKEL has no briefing from the President on the reasons for the complication in relation to the drawing up of the Terms of Reference. Our position, however, is that the conclusion on the Terms of Reference should not have encountered so many difficulties, given that the 2014 Joint Declaration, the convergences that were achieved so far and the Framework of the Secretary General of the UN constitute a sufficient basis for things to proceed to a meeting of the two leaders with the UN Secretary-General, the convening of an informal conference under the auspices of the UN and subsequently to a resumption of substantive negotiations from the point where they had remained at Crans Montana.
7. The issue of political equality should not have represented an obstacle to the resumption of negotiations After all, in the Report submitted by the UN Secretary General on Crans Montana it is stated that towards the end of the Conference “the sides had essentially solved the key issue of effective participation.” (paragraph 27). Therefore, if all the parties mean it when they declare that they respect the convergences, then the regressions by both sides must be terminated and the relative convergence should be confirmed. Mr. Akinci must accept that the position for one positive Turkish Cypriot vote will only be demanded in some low level policy bodies and not in all. Indeed it should be recalled that a convergence on these low-level policy bodies had been achieved at Mont Peleran 1. Mr. Anastasiades must return to the convergence that the one positive vote is demanded in the taking of decisions in the Council of Ministers.
8. As regards the core issue of security and guarantees, the Guterres Framework responds effectively to the concerns of the Greek Cypriot community and essentially resolves the Cyprus problem as a problem of invasion, occupation and foreign interventions. We recall that at Crans Montana the common position of the UN Secretary-General, the European Union, Greece and even Britain was the abolition of the Treaty of Guarantee and of any intervention rights from day one (of the solution), the rapid withdrawal of the occupation troops and the only pending issue was the future of the contingents of ELDYK and TOURDYK. In addition, with the informal document on the mechanism of implementation of the solution that was tabled at the Conference, the guarantor powers are only assigned an advisory – and not an executive – role. These can only be ensured at the table of substantive negotiations.
9. It is unquestionable that the provocative rhetoric on the part of the Turkish Foreign Minister is undermining the effort for a resumption of substantive talks. The reply to Turkey’s stand can only be through the Greek Cypriot side’s steadfast consistency to what has been agreed, both in relation to the substance, as well as the procedure. Our reply to Turkish Foreign Minister Mr. Cavusoglu is that there is no question of any solution being discussed that will not liberate and reunite Cyprus. The continuation of the anachronistic regime of the guarantees and of any intervention rights is not under discussion. There is no question of discussing any idea whatsoever – whether new or old – of moving away from the agreed basis of a solution of a bi-zonal, bi-communal federation with political equality as outlined in UN Resolutions. If Turkey, in addition to Cavusoglu’s public statements, puts these demands to the UN Secretary-General, then – in contrast to what happened after Crans Montana – it would then be in conflict with the UN.
10. The statement of the UN Secretary-General on 18th September 2019 sends out a powerful message in every direction. The UN Secretary-General spoke of the Security Council’s impatience to resume the procedure on the Cyprus problem, but also about the fact “there are very good reasons for the parties to understand that at least on terms of reference they need to come to an agreement.”
11. AKEL calls on the two leaders to remain unwaveringly committed to the agreed framework and the effort for a resumption of substantive talks. The assessment of AKEL is that if the talks resume in the manner proposed by the UN Secretary-General and if genuine political will is demonstrated by all sides, then there is a realistic possibility within a short period of time to resolve the six key issues of the Cyprus problem. In essence, we will be on an irreversible path towards a solution to the Cyprus problem.
12. AKEL addresses a greeting of hope and struggle to the Cypriot people as a whole, Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots. The difficulties must not discourage those who believe and are struggling for a solution of the Cyprus problem, for a free, independent, peaceful and reunified Cyprus for all Cypriots. The finalization of partition will represent the beginning of the end for Cyprus as we know it. It will mean new suffering for Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots. It will mean a new cycle of insecurity and militarization on our island. There is no alternative other than liberation and reunification for Cyprus and its people. For our present and our future.
The Political Bureau of the C.C. of AKEL