Cyprus government satisfied with European Commission’s report on Turkey 

Cyprus government satisfied with European Commission’s report on Turkey 

Nicosia, November 10, 2015/Independent Balkan News Agency

The Cyprus government is in general satisfied with the contents of the  European Commission report for Turkey, adding that it will study in depth the contents of the Report and will present its views in detail to the relevant EU institutions in view of the evaluation of Turkey`s accession process in December by the European Council.

In a written statement on Tuesday, Government Spokesman Nikos Christodoulides said that once again, the complete lack of progress as far as Turkey`s obligations towards Cyprus are concerned is written clearly and coherently.

According to the Spokesman, the Report repeats that there hasn`t been any progress on Turkey`s part as regards to the implementation of the Additional Protocol to the Association Agreement and to the normalising of its bilateral relations with the Republic of Cyprus and that Turkey has not complied with its obligations as noted in the Negotiating Framework and Council Declarations and in the EU statement of 21st September 2005.

Within this framework, we fully share the Commission`s view that the implementation of Turkey`s obligations towards Cyprus will significantly boost its accession course, the Spokesman added.

Regarding the Commission`s intention to submit revised documents on chapters that Cyprus has blocked in 2009, the government points out that the reasons that it decided to block the chapters remain and according to what the Commission mentions in the report, the inclusion of revised documents does not prejudge the discussions in the Council nor the positions of member states.

The Spokesman recalls that the Enlargement procedure has an intergovernmental nature and member states have the final say in relation to the opening or closing of accession chapters.

As regards the Cyprus problem, the Spokesman notes that the Report points out Turkey`s obligation to actively contribute to the procedure underway and notes that its role is critical and therefore the government is anticipating that Turkish statements made at times, will turn into action.

The Cypriot Government also welcomes the criticism exercised on Turkey over its provocative actions and statements between October 2014-April 2015 in relation to the exercise of the Republic of Cyprus` sovereign rights within its Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ). As stated in the Spokesman`s statement, the report points out that Turkey`s actions were completely in contrary to the repeated calls of the EU Council for respect of the sovereign rights of all member states within their EEZ and their sovereignty over their territorial waters and airspace.

The Spokesman further notes that the Commission urges Turkey to implement all decisions of the European Court of Human Rights to restore respect for human rights, making specific reference to Turkey`s conviction in the May 12, 2014 ruling in connection with the Republic of Cyprus` claim for just satisfaction.

The Cypriot side said that of particular importance, is the reference in connection with the investigation into the fate of the missing persons and the work of the Committee on Missing Persons (CMP), which stressed the need to accelerate the process for full access to the CMP to archives and areas controlled by the Turkish military, in the Turkish occupied areas of Cyprus.

As regards Turkey`s importance in addressing the unprecedented immigration crisis that affects the whole of Europe, reflected in this year`s Report, the Cyprus Government notes that it does not doubt Turkey`s significance in effectively addressing the problem, however, it indicates that the EU-Turkey cooperation as regards migration is governed by the existing framework for EU relations with Turkey, which provides for specific conditions such as the full and non-discriminatory implementation of the readmission agreement of Turkey and of the Roadmap to all Member States, something which the Commission has described as crucial.

Concluding, the Cyprus government particularly welcomes the progress made by Serbia and Montenegro as part of their accession negotiations and looks forward to the opening of the first negotiating chapters with Serbia.

The Republic of Cyprus has been divided since 1974 when Turkey invaded and still occupies 37% of this EU Mediterranean island`s territory. Turkey is the only country in the world which does not recognize Cyprus. UN led talks resumed in May with a view in reaching a solution of the Cyprus problem under a federal system.

Source: CNA