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North hands Unficyp a one-month deadline

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Unficyp has not received any notification about the north’s request to leave their stations in a month if they do not recognise the breakaway regime, the force’s spokesperson told Cyprus Mail on Wednesday.

“We are aware of the request made by the Turkish Cypriot side at the UN Headquarters recently although we have yet to receive any official notification from them,” said Aleem Siddique.

“The presence of the force remains unchanged.”

According to reports in the Turkish newspaper Hurriyet, the ‘government’ in the north had given Unficyp an ultimatum, asking them to recognise their ‘state’ or leave.

In his interview, the Turkish Cypriot ‘foreign minister’ Tahsin Ertugruloglu said that if Unficyp does not make an agreement with the breakaway regime then they will need to abandon their two stations in the north.

Ertugruloglu said that Unficyp’s mandate stems from an agreement with the Greek-Cypriot side, and that the north is hosting them.

“Our hospitality has ended, either they sign a military agreement with the ‘TRNC’ or they will have to leave,” he said.

He added that at the UN General Assembly in New York, he, and Turkish Cypriot leader Ersin Tatar met with UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres and United Nations Under-Secretary-General for Peace Operations Jean Pierre Lacroix, to whom they presented their preliminary ‘status of forces of agreement’ (SOFA). They also informed them that they will take further steps to have the ‘TRNC’ recognised.

“After 1974, we live with the security of the Turkish army, if the UN soldiers leave the ‘TRNC’, they will leave,” he said

 

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