Published by: Parikiaki
Hundreds of British Cypriots picketed the Turkish embassy in central London on Saturday afternoon voicing their condemnation of the illegal regime in occupied Cyprus, on the 31st anniversary of its unilateral declaration. The protest was organised by the National Federation of Cypriots in the UK, whose leaders handed in resolutions to the Turkish embassy and Downing Street demanding that Ankara withdraws its occupying army and the Turkish colonists and calling on the Turkish government to abide by the resolutions of the UN Security Council, the European Union and international law.
This year, however, the resolution letter also urged Turkey to immediately stop the unlawful marine surveys in the island’s EEZ. Turkey is also urged to recognise the Republic of Cyprus, cease exploitation of stolen properties in the occupied areas and end the destruction of the island’s cultural and religious heritage. Signed by the Federation President Peter Droussiotis, the letter addressed to the Turkish ambassador in the UK stresses that his country’s failure to adhere to international law represents “an embarrassing and shameful legacy”, adding that the so-called TRNC is “an unrecognised sham”.
It also notes that the stance that Turkey takes over Cyprus is “entirely in line with the arrogance and bellicosity exhibited by President Erdogan both inside and outside Turkey.”
Furthermore, it points to Turkey’s persistence in “ignoring the European Union and arrogantly contravening resolutions of the European Parliament as well as judgments of the European Court of Justice and the European Court of Human Rights, as if these institutions did not exist. “Little wonder, then, that Turkey’s aspirations for EU membership lie in tatters,” laments the resolution letters. The letter addressed to David Cameron stresses that Turkey continues to act “belligerently and provocatively”.
It stresses that Ankara still seeks to legitimise “the tragic consequences of its illegal and brutal invasion and continuing military occupation.” It draws the PM’s attention to the fact that “so far, there has not been a single instance or action to suggest that Turkey’s leadership is serious about a settlement on Cyprus, as the latest actions in Cyprus’s EEZ further demonstrate.” It also highlights the United Kingdom’s both moral and legal obligations under the Treaty of Guarantee “to use its considerable influence on Turkey and to demand a just and lasting settlement that is consistent with the UN Charter, the EU’s founding principles and values and international law.“
Mr Droussiotis goes on to state: “Britain’s role is clear: as a guarantor power of the independence and territorial integrity of the Republic of Cyprus, a permanent member of the UN Security Council, a fellow member of the EU and the Commonwealth, and with sovereign bases on the island, Britain has a unique, critical and potentially decisive role to play in relation to Cyprus. The sizeable British Cypriot community looks to you and your Government to execute those responsibilities proactively and constructively.” From Belgrave Square, where the Turkish Embassy is located, Droussiotis described the so-called ‘TRNC’ as a symbol of Turkey’s bullying behaviour, representing a huge threat to peace, security and stability on the island and in the region. He also said that the way in which this country is once again flouting international convention and the rule of law by making incursions into Cyprus’s EEZ is a reminder of Turkey’s arrogant and bellicose behaviour. “Turkey gains nothing from its obstinate, intransigent and provocative actions in relation to Cyprus.
On the contrary, Turkey’s unacceptable behaviour along with a catalogue of human rights abuses within its own territory and a condescending attitude to virtually all of its neighbours mean that the country is currently isolated in the world, as illustrated by its failure to be elected as a non-permanent member of the United Nations Security Council. The world must not tolerate Turkey’s injustices in Cyprus indefinitely,” said the National Federation of Cypriots in the UK President.