President Nicos Anastasiades, in a comment certain to draw fire from the opposition said on Friday night at a Kyrenia event that it did not matter who would have administration of certain areas, as long as Greek Cypriots had the right to go back to their towns and villages in the north.
“No corner of Cyprus will be written off,” he said. “It doesn’t matter who will have the administration. It is important to have the right to go back to Kyrenia, Lapithos and Karavas communities, anywhere I choose, to have the right to feel that Cyprus is the common home of all, Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots,” he added.
The president also said that “whether we like it or not, there are some realities that if we ignore them, if we create illusions, the risk of losing important rights that today we are trying to safeguard will be even greater”.
At the same time he assured that the government`s concern was how to turn Cyprus into a modern European country, how to give the right to every citizen to freely choose where to exercise a profession, to return and to live.
Saying that in recent days there had been a progress in the negotiating table in most issues, he added that at the same time there is still a distance to go. “There are difficulties”, he said.
“What we seek is to ensure the independence and absolute sovereignty of the evolved Cyprus Republic. Certainly we want to ensure the Republic of Cyprus, but not with the present status quo,” he said.
He also said that the Republic of Cyprus as it was accepted by the European Union, was not limited to the territories controlled by government forces but extended from Apostolos Andreas, and Kyrenia to Paphos, Limassol Famagusta.
The Green Party was the first to comment on Saturday, saying Anastasiades was effectively saying that conquest was the determining factor as to who should govern.
“It means that the Greek Cypriots and indigenous inhabitants of Kyrenia district will not have essential democratic rights. Let’s be honest and just admit that for Kyrenia a solution to the Cyprus problem should involve the sacrifice of human rights and democratic rights,” the party said.
“President Anastasiades for his own reasons decided recently to adopt a policy of the ‘positive agenda’ in Cyprus. He wants to see the glass half full. It is surprising that there is so much optimism about progress in the talks when there are large differences on critical issues, and while the messages are negative.”