Nicosia never gave consent for the works carried out at Cetinkaya stadium, foreign minister, Ioannis Kasoulidis, reiterated on Thursday.

Speaking on CyBC radio, Kasoulides characterised the completion of works at the stadium, set to re-open next month, as a “sad development” and claimed Unficyp had admitted to its mishandling of the situation.

Despite assurances from Unficyp that the stadium was to be used solely for training purposes, Kasoulides said disagreement persists over the works as well as the issue of fencing off the area. The re-opening is problematic at various levels, the minister said, including raising concerns over civil defenses.

Striking a warning note, Kasoulides said that should the improperly issued permit be rescinded, Turkish Cypriot reaction will not be against the UN but against the Republic.

Unficyp officials, Kasoulidis claimed, in an attempt to save face with their supervisors in New York, are upholding impressions that approval had been granted for the works, however, no official agreement exists, and lower ranking UN staff have informally admitted to this.

Despite consultations between the UN and the ministry prior to November, Unficyp’s mishandling of the matter is a serious breach of trust and relations the minister concluded.