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Turkish Cypriots will reject a loose federation, says Ozersay

Kudret Ozersay

The Turkish Cypriot side does not accept a ‘loose federation’ as a way of reunifying the island, Turkish Cypriot ‘foreign minister’ Kudret Ozersay has said, adding that the Greek Cypriots’ refusal to share power and natural resources was the reason the talks collapsed last year and not the guarantees.

In an interview with CNN Turk, Ozersay said the Greek Cypriot side sought to create the impression that the talks in Switzerland were interrupted over disagreements on the chapter of security and guarantees, which was not the case.

He added that during the talks in Crans-Montana there had been a problem with sharing power and natural wealth.

Of the ‘loose federation’ solution that President Nicos Anastasiades mooted at the national council recently, Ozersay said in reality it was Greek Cypriots saying they are not prepared to share power equally with the Turkish Cypriots.

“Less authority with the central federal government and more authority with the states. This is defined as loose federation,” he said, adding that it was impossible for the Turkish Cypriot side to accept such an approach.

Ozersay also warned that the Turkish Cypriot side will continue to take measures to counter the Republic’s “unilateral” actions in the Eastern Mediterranean.

He said their intention was never to create trouble and they had always promoted cooperation in the region.

“Especially on energy and other similar matters, our proposal had always been cooperation.”

Ozersay said the Republic would probably carry out exploratory drilling by the end of this year, adding that Turkish Cypriots will also do the same in a similar area through Turkey’s state oil company, TPAO.

Ankara supports the north’s claims on blocks 1, 2, 3, 8, 9, 12 and 13, including within few kilometres from the Aphrodite gas field in block12.

Turkey has its own claims also on the island’s EEZ, which partially overlap with Cyprus’ blocks 1, 4, 6 and 7.

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