Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutolu said that Turkey will always support Turkish Cypriots and their government, the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus.
Speaking at a meeting with his Turkish Cypriot counterpart, Ozdil Nami (pictured on left), who was on his first official visit to Turkey, Davutoglu said that Nami had taken office during a significant period for Cyprus. The two ministers met at Istanbul’s Hilton Hotel on Saturday
“I hope the Greek side doesn’t miss the opportunity this time and that the two sides can find an opportunity to establish peace. Turkey will continue to be with Cypriot Turks and the KKTC. Your tranquility, peace, welfare and security mean our tranquility, peace, welfare and security. I hope Cyprus is able to establish long-lasting peace together,” Davutoglu said.
Nami said he was happy to be making his first official trip abroad, adding that the Turkish Cypriots will continue to negotiate and cooperate with Ankara as it has in the past. Nami seconded the Turkish foreign minister’s comments and said that the Cyprus issue is at an important junction.
Cyprus has been split between Turkish and Greek Cypriots since 1974, and reunification efforts in 2003 failed. Reunification talks stalled once again in 2004 when Greek Cypriots rejected a UN plan. Greek Cyprus joined the European Union soon afterward, and Brussels recognizes the Greek Cypriot-controlled government in the south as the island’s sole authority.
Turkish Cypriots, Nami said, have made every effort for peace. With the Greeks far outnumbering the Turks on the island, uncertainty about the future of the TRNC continues but Cyprus’ future needs to be clarified once and for all, he said.
“We want a federal solution for Cyprus. All our efforts are to this purpose. However, the other side [Greek Cyprus] should also do its part. This [reunification] will only become a reality with their positive response.”
The Turkish Cypriot foreign minister said that the UN should support the TRNC’s efforts.
In a meeting in Ankara with Davutoglu on Friday, UN Special Envoy to Cyprus Alexander Downer prepared the ground for reunification negotiations expected to resume in October, discussing a timetable for and Turkey’s stance on the talks.