Today, the UN is once again facilitating efforts to reach a mutually acceptable solution to the Cyprus problem and work towards an agreement on an independent Cypriot state in the form of an indissoluble partnership, with a federal government and two equal constituent states, the Greek Cypriot (GC) State and the Turkish Cypriot (TC) State”.
The structure of this bizonal, bicommunal federal republic structure would be based on political equality. The talks on reunification will continue to be ongoing until there is a deal. What is on offer is EU membership for the TC, 1 citizenship for all Cypriots, 2 official languages, a new national anthem and a new flag.
It has always been agreed that some of the territory controlled by the Turkish Cypriots will be ceded to Greek Cypriot control in any peace deal from the current 37 per cent to 29 per cent Britain has offered to give up half the territory of its sovereign bases as part of any deal. The TCs have insisted on a rotating presidency with a Turkish Cypriot elected every two years.
The government-controlled RoC has a population of 848.897, some 670.000 are Greek Cypriots the rest are foreigners (2016 estimate). The ‘TRNC’ population according to their Government (Nov 2017) is 351.000 almost all Turkish but the ‘TRNC’ gave no report as to how many are Turkish settlers or children of Turkish settlers (Source: Cyprus Mail 28/11/17)
Property: the plan’s complex property provisions includes restitution, compensation and exchange. Security and Guarantees- There would be a phased demilitarisation of Cyprus. After that, numbers would be scaled down to the original 950 Greek and 650 Turkish troops envisaged under the 1960 Treaty of Alliance. This would be reviewed every three years with the aim of an eventual total withdrawal of all Greek and Turkish forces.
Belgium is an EU member and is home to two main linguistic groups, the Dutch-speaking, mostly Flemish community, which constitutes about 59 per cent of the population, and the French-speaking, mostly Walloon population, which comprises about 40 per cent of all Belgians. Belgium is a good working model.
Canada is also another good example of one citizenship, two official languages and there have been many French speaking Canadian prime ministers working for the benefit of all Canadians. Reunification would have more benefits for the TC with EU membership and a united EU member Cyprus could apply for NATO membership what better security guarantees for the TC.
Let’s move forward as One United Cyprus, if Belgium, Switzerland, Canada and others can do it so can Cyprus.
GK Georgiou, via email