By Cotas Yennaris
If one believes stories in the Turkish Press, especially in those media known for their affiliation with the regime, one would think that after the collapse of the process in Switzerland, Turkey feels “liberated” from its obligations as defined by its acceptance of the United Nations principles and resolutions on Cyprus over the years.
That is not surprising perhaps. Was it not obvious over the years that Turkey was not interested in any solution that would negate what Turkey achieved militarily on the island in 1974? Did ANYBODY, any country or any international organisation try to make Turkey conform to its responsibilities as a member of such organisations, or show the least respect to international law?
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In the face of such scandalous tolerance towards Turkey’s continued violation of any norm of international relations and especially towards such aggressive behaviour to a weaker and certainly much smaller neighbour, those responsible for the experience of the Cypriot people in the hands of Turkey are certainly Turkey. But more importantly and perhaps more so are those that encouraged Turkey through their tolerance and strategies of serving their selfish geo-strategic interests and schemes at the expense of the region’s people, rather than the principles and values they spend so much lip-service to.
This situation suited perfectly the over-arrogant dangerously nationalistic inclined Turkish leadership. They took full advantage of it to block any solution based on internationally accepted principles and norms that would undo what Turkey did in 1974 to Cyprus. On top of that, they aimed at securing a solution that would legitimise their unlawful ambitions on the island, irrespective of the fact that this amounted to neocolonialist objective, condemned by the United Nations and the world at large, but keeping silent in the case of Turkey.
And still, there was and unfortunately still is complete silence on the part of those who love to appear as the guarantors and guardians of all the good and sacred in international relations scripted on paper over the years. Cyprus was and unfortunately still is considered by the powerful of this world as small and expendable. And is left at the mercy of unscrupulous Turkish leaders.
Turkey now moves in for the final kill. After the collapse of the UN process in Switzerland – unfortunately with the helping hand of the extremists on both sides – Turkey is moving towards untying her hand from the obligation to find a solution – even under these circumstances as described above – within the UN principles and parameters. If Turkey is allowed to do that, then the responsibility of the leaders of this world would be enormous as Turkey would feel free to extend one way or another its control over the whole island with huge consequences for the stability and security of the entire region.
Turkey is already at odds with all the international bodies that determine both the norm of behaviour in international relations. Its behavior is a source of constant fear of the extent to which Turkey is ready to take matters and the consequences of such stupidity. There is still time, if not for the sake of Cyprus and the Cypriots, at least for the sake of peace in the region and the world to put an end to such activity. And the point where Turkey can be stopped is NOW in Cyprus.
The Cypriots certainly share their part of responsibility in sustaining the so-called Cyprus problem. Now it is out of their hands and in the hands of those who take the decisions which concern the entire world. They cannot escape their responsibility, whatever they do. But they have to do it now – resolutely, decisively and firmly. But do it immediately.
Costas Yennaris is a Journalist and political analyst