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Old arguments resurface on Annan anniversary

Former UN Secretary General Kofi Annan

 

Old arguments resurfaced on the anniversary on Monday of the Annan plan referendum, which was overwhelmingly rejected by Greek Cypriots, and were used to renew criticisms of the current negotiations on the future of Cyprus.

The Citizens’ Alliance said that Greek Cypriots should not sell out the country, saying that on April 24 2004, 76 per cent of Greek Cypriots rejected the plan and sent a clear signal that Cyprus will not accept any compromise that would harm its interests.

The party, which was founded after the referendum, called on people to remain firm. “We will never consent to our signing for the abolition of our state, the Republic of Cyprus. We will not accept a self-imposed restriction of human rights and the abolition of our democratic freedoms,” a statement said. “Let us not forget that motherlands are not for sale.”

Diko referred to the rejection of the plan as an act of dignity, determination, courage and responsibility. They were the ruling party at the time and their leader and former president, Tassos Papadopoulos, strongly urged people to reject it.

The plan, the party said, would have abolished the Republic of Cyprus in return for vague promises from Turkey and would have sacrificed the future of Cypriot Hellenism. Diko said current negotiations were along the along the same lines.

“Unfortunately, the policy implemented since 2008 by the governments of Christofias and Anastasiades did not respect the decision of the Greek Cypriots to reject the proposal,” the party declared, adding that provisions now under discussion were worse than those of the Annan plan.

“We will fight so that, on the next anniversary of the Annan plan, the people will be assured and confident that those who rule it will do so according to their will.”

The Green Party argued along similar lines, saying the decision made by the people was not followed. While Turkey is as intransigent as ever, “the Cypriot leadership chose the way of concessions and the continuation of the ‘good child’ policy”, the party said.

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