Akel leader Andros Kyprianou on Sunday accused the Anastasiades government of being complicit in the deaths of thousands of people in the region, from Gaza to Syria, by remaining silent on the role of the British bases.
Kyprianou was one of the main speakers at a protest march on Akrotiri RAF base, organised by the Cyprus Peace Council.
“We are here today to shout loudly that we want peace,” he said. “The horrors of war are upon us. In Gaza over one million people do not have basic uman rights. Over half a million people have died over the last eight years in the war in Syria. Millions of refugees, among them children are displaced. Meanwhile Yemen is being bombed without end.”
While all this was going, he added, the government of President Nicos Anastasiades “while Syria drowns in blood, is immersed in guilty silence”.
“When we called them to respond clearly to the use of British bases in Cyprus [in a western bombing raid earlier this year], they insisted that they were not taking a position on the war in Syria. But Anastasiades went to Brussels fully aligned with the US and British attack against Damascus,” Kyprianou said.
Akel believes the use of the British bases or other facilities on the island for military incursions makes Cyprus a base of attack and therefore part of the war against Syria and its people. “The government of Anastasiades bears critical responsibility to make clear that our country is left out of this war,” he added.
“The government says one thing, and does another. They proved this when it comes to the Cyprus issue, making statements for internal consumption that the talks will resume, blaming Akel when it can for adopting the Turkish positions.”
If Anastasiades has reconciled himself to a two-state scenario, he should say it honestly and clearly to the people of Cyprus, said Kyprianou.
“We are fighting and will continue to fight for peace in Cyprus. We will never accept to donate half of our homeland in Turkey. We would never consent to legitimise a crime ordered by imperialism in 1974.”
In addition to Akel members the march was being attended by peace movements from overseas, Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot political parties, organisations and movements.