Akel MEP Niyazi Kizilyurek on Wednesday called on the government to create an online platform where Turkish Cypriots and Cypriots living in third countries can directly acquire the EU Digital Covid Certificate.
Citing the refusal by Turkish Cypriot leader Ersin Tatar to cooperate on the matter through the bicommunal technical committee on health, Kizilyurek said such a solution would overcome the problem of the international recognition of the vaccination certificates issued in the north. He also said it would overcome the refusal of the Turkish Cypriot authorities to provide the necessary information to the Republic of Cyprus for securing the necessary certificate.
“Mr Tatar’s refusal to cooperate through the technical committee on health creates serious problems and obstacles for the Turkish Cypriots,” Kizilyurek said in a written statement.
The MEP called on the government to create an online platform for Turkish Cypriots and Cypriots living abroad where each individual could insert their details and acquire the EU Digital Covid Certificate.
Through this proposal, Kizilyurek said he firmly believes that “a way out is being given to a highly humanitarian issue and that all Cypriot citizens will be able to be served.”
Holders of this certificate are, in principle, exempted from testing or quarantine when travelling between EU countries or Switzerland, Iceland, Norway and Liechtenstein, depending on the regulations in each state.
Greek Cypriot co-chair of the technical committee on health Leonidas Phylactou said last week that they recently explained to their Turkish Cypriot counterparts the procedure to obtain the certificate.
He said they asked the details of the vaccinated Turkish Cypriots so that they would be registered in a database so that they could issue their EU certificate. Phylactou said that many Turkish Cypriots had shown an interest in obtaining the certificate and hoped that the information would be forwarded the soonest.
The Turkish Cypriot leadership, however, that has yet to forward this information, had announced it would launch consultations with British authorities to solve the problem as regards Turkish Cypriots, including students, travelling to the UK. No progress has been announced as yet on the matter, however.
The UK does not recognise the north’s vaccination certificates while reports said some airlines do not recognise the PCR tests issued in the north.
In the meantime, Turkish Cypriots are having problems travelling abroad since their vaccination certificates are not widely recognised.
This prompted reactions from the opposition with the Turkish Cypriot teachers’ union KTOS announcing they would hand over the lists to the Republic themselves if the north does not.