In an article by Chris Elliott on Cyprusscene.com it was stated that a TRNC citizen and resident was refused entry from the TRNC into South Cyprus with the aim of making preparations for charity concerts. Elliott recorded the following opinions in the news:
“I was horrified to learn that a dear friend Debbie Mustafoğlu was denied entry at the border crossing.” Debbie tried to travel to South Cyprus with her two friends who are making preparations for two charity concerts.
Elliott continued as: “So why was she denied entry with her Kimlik (ID) Card by the Greek Cypriot Immigration Police when she attempted to travel south with her friends Hatice Salıh Kerimgil and Figen Vicky Rasmussen to further their plans for these two charity concerts which would support children with special needs, and also a peace concert uniting both sides of Cyprus?”
Elliott quotes Debbie saying: “I am a Vatandas (Citizen) of the KKTC (TRNC) and married for 41 years to my husband Mehmet, who is Turkish Cypriot, but because it said on the back of my TRNC ID card (kimlik) that I was born in Oklahoma, USA, I was refused entry at which point all hell broke loose. I walked away quietly but my Turkish Cypriot girlfriends gave them a severe scolding and told them that THEY discriminate against Turkish Cypriots which they were doing then and that the North does not do this to them when they cross.
I’m feeling very sad, down and disillusioned right now. It’s the first time since my breast cancer diagnosis and the battle to live back in April of this year.
With reports of positive negotiations between the Turkish Cypriots and Greek Cypriots in the quest to find agreement and a solution to the Cyprus problem, how will it ever work with attitudes from people like this?”
Elliott reminded that in May 2015 Debbie was the recipient of the US Ambassador’s State Department Cultural Diplomacy Award for her contributions to cultural understanding between the two communities of the island and added that she is a Grammy List Nominee in Classical Music and a former Miss Oklahoma who has performed all over the world.
Elliott also mentioned that later on Debbie and her husband Mehmet had crossed into South Cyprus without problems using their US passports and he asked : “Why is there no flexibility being shown to encourage people who are trying make a difference to enter the south as there are many that enter the north without difficulties?”