Independent presidential candidate, Giorgos Colocassides has differentiated himself from the rest of the field by advocating a hard line on the Cyprus problem. The Elam presidential candidate, Christos Christou, also talks tough on the national issue, but Colocassides is the par excellence spokesman of the rejectionist policy.
Paradoxically, the parties that share his views, Diko and Edek, will be backing the candidacy of Nikos Christodoulides, who seems to adapt his message on the Cyprus problem according to the audience he is addressing. Sometimes he is bizonal, bicommunal federation supporting dove and other times a hawk, who does not even accept the Guterres framework as it is.
Colocassides, in contrast, has never been guilty of any equivocation on the national issue and he has made a hard line the main theme of his election campaign. An announcement issued by his campaign team on Wednesday noted that “the policy of the good child has failed lamentably”, arguing that Famagusta was “the burial of the policy of appeasement”.
He added: “Famagusta must not be sold out at the altar of the good climate. If we, ourselves do not claim our rights and do not fight for our just cause, we should not expect this to be done by the foreign elements.” We have been hearing and reading this rhetoric for decades from the so-called rejectionist camp and while it may sound good it is without substance.
If anything, the opening of the fenced-off area of Varosha by the Turks is not the burial of the policy of appeasement, but of the rejectionist policy. There had been at least three opportunities to have the fenced-off area of Varosha returned to the Greek Cypriots, but none were seized because the deal that would have allowed this to happen was not considered favourable enough. Famagusta was lost because of the rejectionist policy championed by the hard liners, who dismissed the so-called appeasers as traitors.
It is the policy of the bad child which blocked every attempt at reaching a compromise, that has failed lamentably, as the facts show. The fenced area of Varosha has been opened, the north has become a province of Turkey in everything but name, and Turkish nationals will soon outnumber Turkish Cypriots (if it has not already happened). This is not because of our policy of appeasement but because the rejectionist tendency has always dominated Greek Cypriot politics.
Famagusta was not sold out at the altar of the good climate. The Turks exploited the bad climate that followed the Crans-Montana collapse to proceed with the opening of Varosha, while the Islamisation of the occupied north was speeded up as well. This is the harsh reality, which the rejectionists refuse to see, while peddling the same fighting talk, which has allowed Turkey to realise all the objectives it had set more than 50 years ago.