Ersin Tatar says the Turkish Cypriots will not step down from a two-state solution for the Cyprus dispute and welcomed the Organization of Turkic States's decision to admit TRNC as an observer state.
The full recognition of Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) cannot be prevented, the Turkish Cypriot president has said, a day after its admission into the Organization of Turkic States as an observer state.
Responding to Greek and Greek Cypriot officials’ statements regarding the observer status, Ersin Tatar said on Saturday they are “opposed to our sovereign equality and equal international status."
He said the Turkish Cypriots would not step back from a two-state solution for the Cyprus dispute.
Earlier, Tatar welcomed the Turkic bloc's decision, saying he has been "putting forward a vision to put an end to the persecution of my people, who have been subject to inhuman isolation for more than half a century, deprived of their inherent rights ... their sovereignty and international status.”
He also thanked Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu for continuing support to Turkish Cypriots and the TRNC.
President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Türkiye has contributed to the solution of Cyprus issue and has shown Turkish Cypriots that they are not alone during his speech at the Organization of Turkic States’ summit in Uzbekistan pic.twitter.com/FtWpfsTANm— TRT World (@trtworld) November 11, 2022
The island has been mired in a decades-long dispute between Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots, despite a series of diplomatic efforts to achieve a comprehensive settlement.
Ethnic attacks starting in the early 1960s forced Turkish Cypriots to withdraw into enclaves for their safety.
In 1974, a Greek Cypriot coup aimed at Greece’s annexation of the island led to Türkiye’s military intervention as a guarantor power to protect Turkish Cypriots from persecution and violence. The TRNC was founded in 1983.
It has seen an on-and-off peace process in recent years, including a failed 2017 initiative in Switzerland under the auspices of guarantor countries Türkiye, Greece and the UK.
The Greek Cypriot administration was admitted to the EU in 2004, the same year when Greek Cypriots thwarted a UN plan to end the longstanding dispute.