Turkish Cypriot President Dervis Eroglu has stated that the explorations of the Turkish seismic survey vessel ‘Barbaros Hayrettin Pasha’ off the south coast of Cyprus is “totally in harmony with the law and the agreements”, ‘Halkin Sesi’ reports.
“The statements that ‘Barbaros’ or the Turkish warships harass the Greek Cypriots are completely wrong”, he said speaking after a meeting yesterday with the parliamentary platform. He added that Turkey “is using the power we have given to her to search our rights in the sea”.
“We cannot endure the preconditions of the Greek Cypriots any longer”. Eroglu warned that: “Either they will sit and talk, or, if they do not intend to talk, let them come out openly and say this. And we will arrange our way of action accordingly”.
The President gave assurances that the Turkish Cypriot side is determined to continue the negotiations, but “this game is not played [by one side] alone”.
Reiterating the view that the Turkish Cypriot side is looking for a solution taking into account the “realities” on the island, Eroglu argued that the world should understand these “realities” and said:
“As long as the Greek Cypriots think that we will continue the negotiations for many years and at the same time we will remain under embargoes, it is normal for them to think of not sitting at the negotiating table from time to time”.
Asked about what steps Turkey and the TRNC were considering taking, Eroglu replied: “We are not the ones who should take steps. It is the Greek Cypriot side. The Greek Cypriot side is the one which gathered the political parties and decided to postpone the negotiations. They have to sit and decide whether they will continue [implementing] this decision, or whether they will come to the negotiations. There is no step for us to take.
Outside this, there are steps which we have to take to explain to the world how wrong and unjust is the decision of the Greek Cypriots to postpone the negotiations”.