A Turkish Cypriot journalist has written a column about the Cyprus rally in which he says that the event should not be turned into a political football.
Columnist Hasan Ecer writing in ‘Yeni Duzen’ focuses on the participation of Turkish Cypriot competitors in the Cyprus Rally 2014, and points out that this event which will be broadcast live by Eurosport and Al Jazeera TV, will be watched in 168 countries.
“This is the biggest gain which the competition will secure for our country. Even if you spend millions of dollars, you cannot have such advertising and promotion”, he notes and says inter alia, the following:
“This organisation is an important step for the promotion of our country and the breaking of the embargoes which are imposed on us. The fact that Turkish Cypriot drivers will also participate in the competition makes the importance of the competition more meaningful. When I was preparing this article, I found out that five of our competitors will participate in this competition, that is, in this big Rally which will last three days. Sixteen people had applied to participate in the competition. However, only five of our competitors could participate in this three-day competition because of some technical and financial problems.”
‘Kibris Postasi’ reported that out of 16 competitors from North Cyprus who will be taking place in the rally, 10 cars were unable to pass the technical inspections. Under the FIA rules, the engine and chassis must have original parts therefore, 10 Turkish Cypriot drivers were disqualified on the grounds that their cars were not made up from original parts.
Within the 3 day Cyprus Rally at the Nicosia bi-zonal special leg, 5 Turkish Cypriots will be racing. 4 of these competitors will take part in the whole of the rally.
Hasan Ecer in ‘Yeni Duzen’ goes on to write: “However, I heard that there are some associations which are preparing to protest against such a big organisation. Beware, do not try to do such a thing. These people are suffering under embargoes for years. For the sake of political causes, do not try to turn this opportunity given to the Turkish Cypriot people to make its name heard in the world into something negative.
Like we always say, ‘let us leave politics to the politicians’. Sports are a means which unites countries, strengthens friendships and, most importantly, shows that we are an entity in the world.”