St. Petersburg, Russia 16 Oct. 2017 (TRNC PIO)
TRNC Speaker of the Assembly, Sibel Siber stressed that the political embargoes and isolation imposed on the TRNC should not preclude the representation of Turkish Cypriot people in the international arena.
Siber, who has been in Russia for the 137th Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) General Assembly, referred to a speech delivered by Putin which stated that “parliamentarians who are elected by the people through the democratic process should not be subject to international restrictions.”
Pointing out that the Turkish Cypriot people have their own democratically elected parliament, Siber said that the imposed political embargoes and diplomatic isolation should not preclude representation of the Turkish Cypriot people in the international arena. She stressed the importance of dialogue as a solution to conflict in the world today and noted the paradox inherent in isolating representatives who have been elected by the Turkish Cypriot people.
Siber also added that listening to only one side on the Cyprus issue, a longstanding dispute, is against the Inter-Parliamentary Union’s dialogue and communication policy.
Expressing hope that positive steps will be taken on this issue and that all restrictions will be lifted on Turkish Cypriot representatives in the future, she said the TRNC government will continue to promote its initiatives and efforts on this issue on every platform.
Siber stated that it made little sense to withhold the TRNC’s observer status to the Inter-Parliamentary Union, the largest and oldest inter-parliamentary union in the world, given that the TRNC has been accepted in the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe and has also been granted observer status within the Parliamentary Union of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation.
Kahraman: “Turkey is not an occupying state”
Addressing speakers and parliamentarians at the 137th General Assembly of the Inter-Parliamentary Union, Turkey’s Speaker of the Grand National Assembly İsmail Kahraman responded to Greek Cypriot and Armenian officials’ comments on Turkey’s relationship with the TRNC.
Pointing out that Turkey had always acted in accordance with the Zurich and London Agreements, Kahraman said: ‘Turkey is not an occupying state. Cyprus has not been occupied since 1974. The Zurich and London Agreements name Turkey and the UK as guarantor powers.’
He said, ‘Turkey is on the island in accordance with these agreements. Referring to the Turkish presence as an “occupation” is misleading. A military coup was staged on the island and Turkey used its guarantor rights in accordance with the law.’