Kornelios Korneliou, the Permanent Representative of Cyprus to the UN, said the Turkish side has never honoured the agreement reached in Vienna on August 2, 1975, vis-à-vis the enclaved population in the north.
Speaking during a Security Council open debate on the Protection of Civilians in Armed Conflict, Korneliou outlined the obligations of the Turkish side in providing “every help to lead a normal life, including facilities for education and for the practice of their religion, as well as medical care by their own doctors and freedom of movement in the north”.
In practice, he said, the Cypriot enclaved were subjected to constant harassment.
Referring to their dwindling numbers, Korneliou said that in July 1974, after more than 160,000 Cypriots were forced to flee the Turkish invasion, a significant number – around 20,000 – remained enclaved.
“In 43 years since 1974 this number has diminished from 20,000 to only 403, after being subjected to constant harassment, including physical assaults, restrictions to their movement, denial of access to adequate medical care, denial of adequate educational facilities especially beyond the elementary school level, censorship of school books, curtailment of their right to use and bequeath their immovable property and curtailment of freedom of worship in their churches and monasteries,” he said.
Despite minor improvements in the lives of the enclaved due to the help of UNFICYP, their living conditions remain deplorable and unchanged, the Permanent Representative added.