Nicosia, March 31, 2015/ Independent Balkan News Agency
By Kyriacos Penintaex
The immediate withdrawal of the Turkish troops from Cyprus, the return of the refugees to their land and the termination of the influx of illegal settlers are European Union obligations as well, Greek President Prokopis Pavlopoulos stressed here in Cyprus on Tuesday.
Pavlopoulos visited the camp of the permanent Greek military force stationed in Cyprus, known as ELDYK, near Nicosia, accompanied by Defense Minister Christoforos Fokaides.
ELDYK together with the Cyprus National Guard defends the country`s territory against the occupying forces and its national goal and purpose is to remain here until the occupying forces withdraw and until there is no occupied areas and refugees, Pavlopoulos said.
The struggle of ELDYK and of the Cypriot military forces is common, he said, adding that it is a struggle of Hellenism for freedom and the implementation of international and European law.
Cyprus` territory is the territory of a member state of the EU, the Greek President said, noting that Turkish military forces in Cyprus violate international and European law.
He said that the European partners must understand that the immediate withdrawal of the occupying troops and the return of refugees to their land, as well as the end of illegal settlement of the occupied areas “is not only our duty but also of the European Union, which has to defend these principles and values”.
“As we observe our obligations, they should also meet theirs,” he noted.
Cypriot Defence Minister Christoforos Fokaides said the Greek President`s visit was not only a symbolic one, but a strong expression of Greece`s unwavering willingness to be the main guarantor of Cyprus` security and sovereignty, strengthening the two countries` common defense planning and the interests of Greece, not only of Cyprus, but also the interests of the EU.
The Greek President, who met yesterday with President Nicos Anastasiades concludes today his two day visit in Cyprus.