President Akinci issued a written statement on Friday rejecting Prime Minister Huseyin Ozgurgun’s assertion that he was giving way in the Cyprus negotiations. Ozgurgun had also asked why Akinci had not let everyone know what the content of the meetings were.
Akinci replied that the prime minister had never voiced his concerns in their weekly meetings. In fact, Ozgurgun had clearly indicated that the government supported the negotiations, he said.
He added that Ozgurgun had not read the minutes of the negotiations and was acting as though he did not understand the effect of his statements on the talks.
The prime minister, Akinci said, is attacking the elected president of the state on the brink of a crucial stage in the talks, which begin on 23rd August.
The president noted that if there are sufficient convergences reached in the series of meetings scheduled to take place until 14th September, there could be positive developments for a solution in the second half of September.
He added that he is trying to reach a settlement “not by begging but with decisiveness, pride and honour”.
Akinci accused the prime minister of trying to make him look weak and said that his behaviour was unbecoming to his position.
Leader of the Republican Turkish Party (CTP) Mehmet Ali Talat, said on Friday that as elected leader of the Turkish Cypriots, Akinci was the legal representative in the negotiations. He pointed out that Ozgurgun been appointed as prime minister because of a change in the makeup of the coalition government. Ozgurgun, he said, had not been elected by the people because of his position on the Cyprus problem.
After a change in the composition of the coalition government in April last year, Ozgurgun, as leader of the UBP, became prime minister.
Prior to that, the coalition comprised Talat’s party (CTP) and Serdar Denktash’s Democratic Party (DP). CTP Prime Minister Omer Kalyoncu resigned last April, after his party delayed signing the financial protocol with Turkey for 2016-18, as it disagreed with some of the conditions in the contract. This brought down the government which reformed with the UBP and the DG in coalition.
Following the formation of the UBP-DP coalition, observers had expressed concerns that the new coalition would have a negative impact on the Cyprus talks, because both parties have a more had-line stance in politics.