Limit property return to preserve bi-zonality

Leader of the UBP coalition party, Hüseyin Özgürgün has said that they wanted to be kept up to speed on developments in the Cyprus negotiations on a daily basis.

Speaking on BRT’s morning show, Özgürgün said that they wanted to be informed first hand on the current developments to keep ahead of speculation by both sides.

Referring to the property issue which has been at the heart of the debate over the past few days, the UBP leader said that in principle, they were against the watering down of the property criteria.

He said that the return of property to former owners should be limited in order to preserve the bi-zonal structure of a settlement, which would go against the spirit of the agreement to be reached.

“It would be best to settle most cases through compensation and exchange and to limit the choice of reinstatement or restitution” Özgürgün added.

The UBP leader also stressed the issue of property could not be discussed independently of Governance and Power Sharing or the issue of territory.

On the issue of guarantees, Özgürgün said that it was the Turkish Cypriots who needed Turkey’s security guarantees.

“I’m not saying that the issue cannot be opened to debate but removing the guarantees altogether is out of the question” he said.

The UBP leader however pointed out that the guarantees system could be scrapped one day once a settlement was reached if the new partnership state matured and the new conditions allowed it.

“It is out of the question for the UBP to accept an agreement that waters down the bi-zonal structure of the new state and which does not recognize the political equality of the two people and Turkey’s effective guarantee” Özgürgün concluded.

On the issue of the new coalition government, the UBP leader said that the first principle in the coalition government protocol was that both parties will have an equal say and responsibility in the administration of the country.

He said that both parties needed to agree, support and implement the decisions taken by the cabinet.



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