An event was held on Saturday at Selimiye Square in the walled city of North Nicosia to mark the 9th May Europe Day.
The event organised by the European Commission’s Representation Office in Cyprus, was attended by the Minister of Economy and Energy Ozdil Nami, the Minister of National Education and Culture Cemal Ozyigit, President Mustafa Akinci’s wife Meral Akinci and a number of MPs.
Projects carried out or financed by EU member countries and institutions were promoted at stands set up in the square.
Delivering the opening speech at the event, the Director of the EU Structural Reform Support Service Mary McCarthy reminded that the EU had provided 480 million Euros of support to the Turkish Cypriot community since 2006.
McCarthy expressed her personal hope that a settlement will be reached in Cyprus, ending the division of the island. She said that the EU was prepared to support any steps to be taken by the two leaders in that direction.
Also speaking, Nami reminded that the EU was a project of peace and that the Turkish Cypriot community had taken a number of concrete steps showing that it wanted to be a part of that project. “We as Turkish Cypriots have done more than our share for the reunification of Cyprus. It is now up to the EU. It is up to the EU to increase its support to the Turkish Cypriot people who have displayed a will for the reunification of the island. The EU should not be held hostage by the Greek Cypriot Administration”, Nami said.
Ozyigit, for his part, said that the EU was an excellent example of support and good relations between countries and added that the support provided by the EU was extremely important for the Turkish Cypriot people. “Unfortunately the support provided does not change the fact that we are living in a divided EU country. It should not be forgotten that the greatest support to be given to this community is to include it in the European Union”, he added.