ATHENS CONDEMNS ERDOGAN’S CYPRUS COMMENTS
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan says Greece is not doing it’s “duty”
2 Sep 2014
Athens reacted angrily to calls by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan for a “two-state” solution to the Cyprus problem and claims that Greece is not “doing its duty” as a guarantor power, saying the comments were “disappointing” and “simply confirm Ankara’s persistence in its aggressive policy” on Cyprus.
Addressing a joint news conference in the Turkish-occupied north of Nicosia with Turkish-Cypriot leader Dervis Eroglu, Erdogan opposed the prospect for a settlement based on a bicommunal, bizonal federation.
Sources said Erdogan denied receiving a letter from Cyprus President Nicos Anastasiades, which was delivered to him at his inauguration ceremony in Ankara last week by Greek Foreign Minister Evangelos Venizelos.
On arriving in the occupied north of the island, Erdogan said Turkey would “not allow Turkish Cypriots to be incorporated within the Greek-Cypriot state as a minority” and called on Greece and Britain to intensify efforts to break the deadlock, claiming that “the Cyprus problem will be solved very quickly if Greece does its duty as a guarantor power as Turkey has done.”
He added that Ankara would allow the reopening of a former Greek Orthodox seminary near Istanbul if Athens permitted the construction of traditional mosques with minarets in the capital and allowed Muslim communities in Thrace, northern Greece, to directly appoint muftis.
In a strongly worded statement issued in response, Greek Foreign Ministry spokesman Constantinos Koutras accused Erdogan of trying to “equate certain of Greece’s international obligations with Turkey’s heavy burden of responsibility regarding the Cyprus issue” and described the parallel as “historically and legally groundless and, thus, politically unacceptable.”
BRIEF COMMENT & QUESTION
The question we would like to pose to Mr Erdogan, is when will the Turkish authorities stop using Islamist and paramilitary groups from formenting strife in Greece, perpetrating acts of terrorism or the burning of Greek forests, or using Northern Greece’s Muslim community as a base for conducting treasonous acts against the Greek state and its peoples? When will this Muslim community cease being used to conduct Islamist and pro-Turkish Nationalist operations by Turkey as a means for leveraging against Greece and avoid her commitments on the issues of Cyprus, the Aegean, Orthodox Christians in Turkey and property and civil rights of Orthodox Christians in Turkey? Ask this, who is better off, Muslims in Greece or Orthodox Christians in Turkey who cannot even say prayers before a meal in public or priests walk around in cassocks? Why is Northern Greece’s Muslim communities flourishing and afforded the same services as every other Greek, but depending where one is located in Turkey, Christians, especially Orthodox Christians, have to be very careful and remain unnoticed so as to avoid violence, discrimination etc? Or why does the Turkish state confiscate properties belonging to the various native Christian communities and sell them to Western Christians or use them as tourist resorts?
Maybe Mr Erdogan, whose family origins were both Orthodox Christian and Pontian Greek, should show some more sensitivity and be just and balanced, considering that he too is the product of forced assimilation, conversion and the descendant of genocide survivors (a genocide which has on and off for the last 800 years), a point which Turkey refuses to recognise in its history. Real men recognise their failings, ask for forgiveness and do something about it (and I don’t mean compensation, but the restoration of historic and religious sites, as well as documenting this past in the history books), so as to move on. People who deny truth are not people, but cowards and spineless liars! So resolve Cyprus and re-open the Theological School of Halki and restore the countles churches and cemeteries to the Ecumenical and Antiochian Patriachates! And not just mere gestures of opening one sacred church for a liturgical service once a year for the tourist dollar like Our Lady of Soumela!