Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has said that sooner or later, Turkey will take a decision as to whether and how the Cyprus problem will be solved and take steps. Replying to journalists’ questions after his visits to Azerbaijan and North Cyprus, Erdogan asserted that Turkey “has made the necessary contribution” to the Cyprus problem within the framework of the UN and added:
“I am the one who, especially since the Kofi Annan period, has been personally involved in this issue, I know this process well, the timetable and encouraged the solution of the Cyprus problem. When Annan visited me twice and said ‘I cannot solve it any more’, I told him ‘let us go together, you will see that Turkey will not embarrass you, we will always be one step ahead of the Greek Cypriot sector’. ‘Give us one week’, they said and we held this meeting in Davos. Annan asked for one week and after a week the talks started. Of course we did our bit again. The most important adventure for us was in Burgenstock and we have seriously taken up the issue, but unfortunately again they did not keep their promise. Whenever the issue has come to the table since then, South Cyprus has always abandoned the table in one way or another. The TRNC has always maintained its position at the table with determination. Turkey as a guarantor country has shown its decisive stance. Unfortunately, the other guarantors have not shown the same stance”.
Noting that Turkey will continue holding the same position in the ongoing process, Erdogan said:
“Until when? It is not easy to find an answer to this. Sooner or later as Turkey we will take a decision. If this happens, it happens. How it will happen, you think about it, we will say and take our steps. The people of northern Cyprus have a special place for us. Our brothers in the TRNC are as important for us as my citizens in Turkey. Therefore, just like we have been offering them every support we could [until now], we will continue supporting them in the future as well”.