Two days before the European Parliament’s vote on the 2023 Progress Report on Turkey, the Left Group of the European Parliament issued a statement criticising the ban on Turkish Cypriots entering Turkey on the basis of their political beliefs. The statement denouncing Turkey came after an initiative by AKEL MEPs Giorgos Georgiou and Niyazi Kızılyürek.

In detail, the statement of the Left in the European Parliament reads as follows:

“Since 2021, the Republic of Turkey has regrettably declined entry to certain Turkish Cypriots. To date, this restrictive measure has affected 12 Turkish Cypriots, including journalists and trade unionists. They have been denied entry into Turkey under the vague pretext of national security concerns. However, all 12 individuals are well-known for their unwavering dedication to the reunification of Cyprus in accordance with United Nations resolutions and EU policies, particularly the Bizonal, Bicommunal Federation (BBF) framework for Cyprus.

It is evident, therefore, that these individuals are being prevented from entering Turkey due to their political beliefs.

The Left in the European Parliament denounces in the strongest possible terms this unacceptable and regrettable policy implemented by the Turkish authorities.

We hereby call upon Turkey to eliminate all impediments preventing Turkish Cypriot EU citizens from entering Turkish territory.”

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