Cyprus was on Monday marking the 43rd anniversary of when the Turkish military launched its second offensive occupying the best part of Mesaoria, Famagusta, Karpasia and Morphou.
The president and the government call on Turkey to put an end to the occupation and to abandon its intransigent positions that are not conducive to a settlement.
“This day evokes dark memories” says Deputy Government Spokesman Viktoras Papadopoulos, in a written announcement.
Papadopoulos said the president and the government condemn the continuous occupation of part of the territory of the Republic of Cyprus and call on Ankara to fully implement UN resolutions and international law provisions, by withdrawing its troops from Cyprus.
They also call on Turkey to abandon its intransigent positions, which led the Conference on Cyprus in Crans-Montana to collapse, in order for Cyprus to become “an independent, normal European state”, says the deputy spokesman.
Papadopoulos said the president has repeatedly stated his readiness to return to the negotiating table “even tomorrow” and continue the talks if Turkey is ready to implement the parameters set by the UN Secretary-General with regards to security, guarantees, intervention rights and occupation troops.
The president also calls on all political parties to cooperate to address Turkish intransigence.
Turkish troops invaded Cyprus on July 20, 1974, five days after the legal government of the late Archbishop Makarios III was toppled by a military coup, engineered by the military junta then ruling Greece.
Two unproductive conferences in Geneva followed; the first between Britain, Greece and Turkey and the second with the additional attendance of Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot representatives. Three weeks after the ceasefire of July 22, and despite the fact that talks were still being held and just as an agreement seemed about to be reached, the Turkish army mounted a second full-scale offensive.
As a result, Turkey increased its hold to include the booming tourist resort of Famagusta in the east and the rich citrus-growing area of Morphou in the west.
Political parties issued statements condemning the invasion.