Famagusta Mayor Alexis Galanos said that a ‘deep state’ exists within the Republic, which does not want a Cyprus solution and has been influencing the Greek Cypriot side’s stance during talks.
According to media reports on Friday, Galanos said during a press conference on Thursday to announce a campaign to promote refugees’ rights, that there was a part of the establishment in Nicosia and Limassol which did not want a solution and was trying to scupper every effort in that direction.
According to daily Politis, Galanos said that it was of little importance to some who had money in Switzerland and the Seychelles if Cyprus was lost.
The mayor said later in the day on Politis radio that some had profited from the invasion and that this situation created new interests. He said that land developers for instance were against any effort for a settlement.
As regards refugees, Galanos said that President Nicos Anastasiades went back on his election campaign promise of equal burden distribution through the recognition of the loss of use of properties in the north. Prior to the elections, he said, Anastasiades used to proclaim that €100m would go towards this. During a meeting earlier in the week however, Anastasiades sang a different tune, Galanos said.
According to reports earlier in the week, Anastasiades told the municipality there were no funds for such a thing but that he was contemplating other ways of compensating refugees without elaborating.
Meanwhile, Edek said that Disy Famagusta municipal councillor, Nicos Karoullas, had threatened his colleagues during a meeting last week that he would shoot anyone who wouldn’t back the announcements the municipality was to make on Thursday at the press conference.
Edek’s Famagusta municipal councillor Demetris Demetriou, told Omega TV on Friday that during a meeting of the municipal council on March 7, Karoullas, without any obvious reason, threatened that he would “shoot” any of his colleagues who would in any way express different opinion than what was to be voiced at the press conference on Thursday.
“He repeated that five to six times,” Demetriou said, adding that Galanos, who was present did not bring him back to order. Demetriou said that Edek will not tolerate such “fascist” actions.
During the press conference on Thursday, Galanos, in the presence of the mayors of five other occupied areas – Morphou, Lefkoniko, Lysi, Akanthou and Kythrea – said that taking advantage of the suffering of refugees to build political careers and gather votes, would no longer be tolerated.
He said that meetings would take place between March 26 and April 17 in Limassol, Larnaca, Nicosia, Dherynia and Athens for the promotion of the demands of the refugee world for transparency in the way Turkish Cypriot property was being used and recognition of their right for compensation for the loss of the use of their properties.
The municipality said in an announcement that they did not agree with the issue of the closed-off town of Varosha being dealt with as a confidence-building measure.
Anastasiades reportedly told the municipal council during a meeting that he had proposed to Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci, setting up a technical committee of experts to carry out studies on the condition of the buildings in Varosha in view of the redevelopment of the town.
The announcement said that they would no longer tolerate being treated as second class citizens. “Opportunities for return were rejected for a variety of reasons and for specific interests, resulting in the suffering of Famagustians being perpetuated while the feeling of injustice is being strengthened,” the announcement said.