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Cyprus protests to UN over Turkey’s airspace violations

Tymbou airport

Cyprus on Thursday officially protested to the United Nations Turkey’s continuing violations of its national airspace and territorial waters and called for them to end immediately.

In a letter to the UN secretary-general which circulated on Thursday, the deputy permanent representative of Cyprus to the UN, Polly Ioannou, sent two documents detailing the violations during August 2018.

“This persistent policy of violating international law and breaching international rules and regulations is a constant threat to international peace and security, has a negative impact on regional stability, jeopardises the safety of international civil aviation, creates difficulties for air traffic over Cyprus and prevents the creation of an enabling environment in which to conduct the Cyprus peace process,” Ioannou said in her letter dated November 14.

She said Turkey continued to systematically harass civilian and military aircrafts within the Nicosia flight information region via radio calls. In addition, Turkish commercial aircraft regularly use the Tymbou (Ercan) airport, which continues to operate illegally following the closure, by the Cyprus government, of all ports of entry in the areas where it does not exercise effective control.

“The actions are clearly aimed at undermining the sovereignty of Cyprus, consolidating the ongoing de facto division and upgrading the secessionist entity’s status by claiming a purported airspace over the occupied territory of the Republic,” the letter said.

Ioannou stressed there is only one Cypriot state, the Republic of Cyprus, something that is stipulated in various Security Council resolution.

“The Republic of Cyprus reiterates, in this respect, its call for all states to respect Security Council resolutions and adhere to the principles of sovereignty and non-interference enshrined in the Charter of the United Nations.”

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