Cyprus Mail

Court rules in favour of Turkish Cypriots waiting for years for ID cards

Cypriot Id Card Specimen Front

The administrative court has ruled in favour of two plaintiffs who filed cases of administrative negligence against the state after having to wait for years for a response to their Cypriot citizenship applications, defending lawyer Murat Metin Hakki said on Wednesday.

The plaintiffs, born from mixed marriages between Turkish Cypriots and Turks, submitted the case to court after finding themselves waiting several years for their requests for a Cyprus ID card and passport to be granted.

According to Hakki, the Turkish Cypriot lawyer representing both plaintiffs, on June 3, 2021 the court ruled that political uncertainty or talks are not an excuse not to respond to requests.

The second ruling, issued last week, said that Cypriot authorities acted in violation of the law by not responding to the requests within a reasonable period of time.

Hakki said that the plaintiffs now plan to take the case to local or international courts, with the European Court of Human Rights as their last-ditch effort.

It is estimated that about 10,000 children were born from mixed marriages between Turkish Cypriots and Turks, the lawyer said.

He argued that the obstacles they face as a result of not having Republic of Cyprus papers make life difficult for many families and limit their children’s chances of studying in European countries.

According to the lawyer, an estimated 34.8 per cent of citizenship applications were submitted between 2004-2007, 6.3 per cent during the period 2008-2011, 32.9 per cent between 2012 and 2015, and 16.1 per cent after 2016.

Hakki said that after the first applications, 2,000 nationalities were granted and later the process was slowed down and eventually halted altogether due to politics.

He claimed that while a lot of people who met the criteria required by the Republic of Cyprus were not granted citizenship, many more who did not were still entitled to it based on international agreements and conventions.

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