Foreign Minister Tahsin Ertuğruloğlu gave an interview in New York to the ‘Voice of America’ radio network, where he pointed out that the United Nations must turn over a new leaf on the Cyprus matter, stating that it is not right to insist on continuing 50 years of failed negotiations.
When answering questions regarding the failed negotiation process and new talks, Ertuğruloğlu pointed out that the Cyprus talks cannot continue under their former conditions, adding that it was clear from the beginning that it would not be possible to reach a settlement based on equality given that both sides were not on equal footing at the negotiating table.
Furthermore, stressing that the Greek Cypriot side speaks of the Republic of Cyprus unilaterally though it has no right to do so, Ertuğruloğlu said that the international community ignores this behaviour while the Turkish Cypriot people continue to live under embargoes and are excluded from the world stage. Stating that any new negotiating process must be based on equality, Minister Ertuğruloğlu added:
“Turkish Cypriot people have never accepted being a minority under Greek Cypriot rule. We favour a solution based on full equality and we insisted on this however the negotiating process collapsed in Crans Montana. It is not possible to continue in the same vein. The Greek Cypriot side wants to continue the process from where it was left. They do not want Turkish Cypriots to be open up to the world – instead they want us to live in isolation.”
He continued, “If they had any intention of making an agreement, this would have been possible in Crans-Montana because the Turkish Cypriot people have four or five other options.
There may be negotiations in Cyprus but there cannot be any negotiation between a state and a community. The process cannot not start again. They have stolen 50 years from the Turkish Cypriot people. We shall not let them steal another 50 years. The new process can only be carried out between one state and another.”