Over 7,000 Greek Cypriots have applied to the Immovable Property Commission (IPC), according to the north’s ‘ambassador’ to Ankara.
Ismet Korukoglu, in wide-ranging statements to Turkish media, hit out against the recent lifting of the US arms embargo on Cyprus, Varosha, and the need for the north to be recognised.
As for Varosha, he claimed that the fenced-off area constitutes part of the “TRNC’s” territory – and it is the ‘government’ which will take the necessary decisions on its future.
“Over 7,000 Greek Cypriots have applied up until now to the IPC,” he said.
Korukoglu also claimed that the US has abandoned its policy of balance and are evaluating moves which favour the Greeks of the island.
He echoed the Turkish foreign ministry’s swift condemnation of the US decision – which called on Washington to review its policy, saying the development would negatively affect efforts to resolve the Cyprus issue.
“The Greek Cypriot side is increasing its [military] budget day by day, they are purchasing attack helicopters from various countries,” he said.
The ‘ambassador’ also stated that the Republic has announced the decision to purchase missile systems, adding: “The lifting of the arms embargo… is not a good decision, it is clear that it will lead to an arms race.”
He also reiterated Turkish Cypriot leader Ersin Tatar’s argument that repeated rounds of negotiations over many models of a settlement have taken place without success. He said the first condition to get talks going again is for the north’s sovereignty and equal international status to be recognised.