Turkey’s Foreign Ministry issued a written statement denouncing the “Greek Cyprus administration’s decision” to back away from the Cyprus talks Anatolia news agency reports.
The statement said the Greek Cypriot administration was “insincere” about the peace talks. “It is well known that Turkey and the Turkish Cypriots want political equality over the issue, which has been going on for more than 50 years, but efforts coming only from the Turkish side will not solve the stalemate,” said the statement.
The Turkish Foreign Ministry also stressed that Ankara would not let the Turkish Cypriots be regarded as a “minority on the island” and called on Greece to get involved in finding a solution for the island’s future “immediately”.
Meanwhile, it reported that the Greek Ambassador in Ankara, Kyriakos Loukakis, was summoned to the Turkish Foreign Ministry following the suspension of the Cyprus peace talks.
The move came on Wednesday when South Cyprus suspended negotiations over the divided island after Turkey sent a warship to monitor oil and gas exploration off the coast of Cyprus.
“Turkey expects the Greek Cypriots to quickly reverse a decision to halt reunification talks with the Turkish Cypriots and resume their dialogue or risk harming peace prospects in a troubled region”, Turkey’s EU Minister Volkan Bozkir said on Wednesday at a press conference to discuss the EU’s annual report on Turkey’s progress towards meeting criteria for membership.
“The (decision) is unfortunate, and I don’t think it’s sustainable. I expect the (Greek) Cypriot administration to change this wrong decision quickly”, Bozkir said.
“This is saddening as it harms glimmers of hope for our region, which is undergoing huge problems … We hope that all of those who have an interest in peace and stability in the region will contribute to changing this decision that has surprised everyone,” Bozkir added calling on Greece, the United States and the EU to intervene to keep the peace talks on track.
Bozkir reiterated that the Greek Cypriots are exploiting the island’s natural resources for their own gain and excluding the Turkish Cypriots from their share.