A two-state solution to the Cyprus problem is close to hand, Foreign Minister and Deputy Prime Minister Kudret Ozersay has said.
Speaking at the TRNC assembly, he said that there is less urgency on the Greek Cypriot side to settle the problem because the divided island of Cyprus had been accepted as a member of the EU before a solution was found. The Greek Cypriots had then gone on to unilaterally exploit the hydrocarbons offshore the island.
Ozersay blamed the international community for this state of affairs.
Furthermore, he added that “if there is a results-oriented process that is not open-ended, the Greek Cypriot side will reach the referendum point and if there were to be a negative outcome again, it will be possible to discuss alternative models and it will be possible to remove the isolations imposed on the Turkish Cypriot community. However the Greek Cypriot leadership will never allow the negotiations process to reach the final phase as long as the conditions that exist today continue”, said Ozersay.
Reiterating that the government is backing different solution models on the basis of cooperation, Ozersay said that in case there is partnership on the basis of cooperation, then it will be possible to build trust between the two communities gradually and the two sides will begin cooperating.
He said that electricity, cultural heritage, exchange of criminals are existing forms of cooperation between the two sides, adding that the sides could also cooperate before a Cyprus settlement, on natural gas, counterterrorism, money-laundering, human trafficking and other issues as well. That is when the Greek Cypriot side will be ready to share governance and wealth on the island and to discuss what kind of partnership could be formed, Ozersay said. He went on to say that there will be no negotiations unless there is ground on which both sides can agree.
Referring to the approved amendments to the rules governing the implementation of the Green Line Regulation, Ozersay stated that the government has taken a number of initiatives to defend the rights of the Turkish Cypriots.