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Official thread for the development of a revised Peace Plan

Propose and discuss specific solutions to aspects of the Cyprus Problem

Postby Alexandros Lordos » Fri Feb 18, 2005 2:35 pm

Magikthrill,

it is interesting that you saw my proposal as "a limitation of voting rights" rather than "an expansion of voting rights" - because in practice, it will prove to be the second rather than the first.

Such an amendment is important because it will take us away from the culture of "ethnically pure constituent states" - which would have wrecked the solution for sure.

People will feel, through this amendment, that if they go to live in the north, then they will have a real voice, and even though it will be mostly TC politicians who will be ruling them, they will be listened to and respected. By setting a maximum limit of 20%, the TCs can be assured that GCs will not dominate the politics of their state.

Now, concerning permanent limits based on ethnicity, that's another discussion altogether. I think we can for now live with a Plan of this type, (i.e. with permanent limits) and maybe the next generation or the generation after will hold a Constitutional Assembly and do away with all distinctions based on race - but we needn't be worrying about this for now.
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Postby magikthrill » Fri Feb 18, 2005 3:09 pm

alexandre,

i understand what you are saying and as i mentioned i dont see any harm with any percentage of GCs voting in the the TCS and vice versa.

I like this idea very much. Hopefully one day the future generations will be willing to bridge the gap but who knows.

Also, what will distinguish a TC from a GC? I mean I can see that on the Identity card the residency can be written, but aside from the name will there be specification: Greek CYpriot or Turkish Cypriot. I mean it might sound trivial but is quite important since only a certain percentage of the peoples vote will be counted (not that theres anything wrong with that)

Other things that im wondering
(anyone please feel free to quote and reply :))

1) the "borders" of the 2 states?

2) will there by other divisions within the states, like in the RoC for example they have "nomous" kind of like counties.

3) Can a GC run for elections in the TC state or vice versa?


Personally, if freedome of movement within the country is unrestricted I think this solution would be marvelous. What is everyone else's opinion ?
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Postby -mikkie2- » Fri Feb 18, 2005 6:05 pm

Alexandre,

Your proposal is the idea I was suggesting to Erol in our heated argument.

I think it does foster unity as every Cypriot will have a say in how the country is run no matter where they choose to live on the island. It actually enhances this notion of political equality.

In fact as an argument it holds very strong because it aleviates the fears that GC's may have if they choose to live and work in the northern part of the island. It will also make the GC's more willing to invest from a business point of view which can only be a good thing.

However, I think the main argument is that TC's don't want to be numerically smaller in their own state. No matter how political equality is arrived at to make it more fair to all, I think this want of the TC's goes against a 'United Cyprus Republic' and brings us back to two states living side by side! The political equality argument is a smoke screen!
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Postby Alexandros Lordos » Fri Feb 18, 2005 6:36 pm

-mikkie2- wrote:However, I think the main argument is that TC's don't want to be numerically smaller in their own state. No matter how political equality is arrived at to make it more fair to all, I think this want of the TC's goes against a 'United Cyprus Republic' and brings us back to two states living side by side! The political equality argument is a smoke screen!


Mikkie2,

Personally I can respect the TC desire to not be a numerical minority in the northern state, voting issues notwithstanding.

As you see, in my proposal I steered away from suggesting that this should be an alternative to the permanent restriction to residence (ie not more than 33% of the TC state to be Greek Cypriots). The two measures (ie the one on voting rights and the one on permanent residence restrictions) can co-exist side by side for now, since the model is supposed to be a bizonal-bicommunal federation.

What my proposal tries to do is it to ensure that:

a) We will not have two ethnically pure states.
b)The majority of each state will always be of the ethnicity in question.

And I suppose these two put together approximate the sense of "bizonal-bicommunal federation", as opposed to "Two separate states" or "Greek Cypriot domination".

P.S. It is not just the Greek Cypriots who would gain from this, with my proposal Turkish Cypriots who choose to live in the south will be given a voice also.
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Postby Alexandros Lordos » Fri Feb 18, 2005 6:47 pm

magikthrill wrote:
1) the "borders" of the 2 states?

2) will there by other divisions within the states, like in the RoC for example they have "nomous" kind of like counties.

3) Can a GC run for elections in the TC state or vice versa?




Magikthrill,

the "Annan formula" for the borders between the two states were that some territory would be returned under GC administration, with the result that 90,000 refugees would be able to return without having to go under TC administration. The areas involved would essentially be half of Famagusta, Morfou, and some villages. There are various small ways in which that map could be improved for both sides.

I suppose there will be other administrative divisions of the territory, within each constituent state, districts, municipalities etc. It wasnt really an issue in the negotiations though, since it is an internal matter for each constituent state to decide.

A GC who is a permanent resident in the TC state can run for all TC elections, and vote for all TC elections, except to the Federal Senate where GCs will only vote for GCs and TCs will only vote for TCs. If my proposal is accepted and GCs have more voting power in the north, then it is more likely that a TC party will include one ot two GCs in its ballot to attract the GC votes, and similarly by analogy, it is more likely that a GC party in the south will include one or two TCs in its ballot to attract the TC votes. Thus, the foundations for bicommunal political parties will be laid ...
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Postby michalis5354 » Fri Feb 18, 2005 6:57 pm

Will the statues of the British bases be re-negotiated again? (ie cease to be sovereigned but be fully controlled by the United Cyprus Republic or Limiting them to One single base etc) What anyone think on this issue?
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Postby erolz » Fri Feb 18, 2005 6:59 pm

Just to be clear on my _personal_ view.

As long as there is a mechanism for the TC communites equal rights as a partner community in Cyprus to be protected and they are accept in principal as rights (and not as a compromise) as well as in practice then I have no requirement or even desire for bizonality. If we can find a way that protects our rights as an equal partner community in the Cypriot state then I am happy for any Cypriot to live and work anywhere in Cyprus as they wish.
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Postby turkcyp » Fri Feb 18, 2005 7:42 pm

-mikkie2- wrote:However, I think the main argument is that TC's don't want to be numerically smaller in their own state. No matter how political equality is arrived at to make it more fair to all, I think this want of the TC's goes against a 'United Cyprus Republic' and brings us back to two states living side by side! The political equality argument is a smoke screen!


Having a huge GC population in north does not bother me at all. As I have expressed earlier i do not care even if there is no limitation on how many GCs settle in north.

And also I do not care if they vote in the northern state as well in the state elections. For that I care, they can even run for the governor (or premier, president whatever you want to call it) of the northern state as well.

But there has to be found a legal way of stopping these GCs in participating federal level elections in the central government and participating state wide elections relating the federal decisions. Otherwise equality of communities will be just on the word not on the substance.

And so far, neither Annan Plan nor what Alex is proposing gives that solution. Both of the solutions involve restrictions on political participation on the basis of ethnicity which most probably would be deemed against human rights of GCs by the ECHR. So in order to avoid this there has to be found a legal restrictions on residency (or state citizenship if you will) not on the ethnicity.

That is why my proposal was treating GCs settling in northern state as not a resident for political purposes. And the way I propose doing this was that, any GC that settles into northern state would have dual residency both TC state and GC state, GC state residency being the primary residency (even though she/he stays in north exclusively. From the legal perspective you actually do not even have to own a property to be resident, so these GCs would be primary resident of southern state in name only for political voting purposes, just like how they vote in USA federal elections in the name of absentee or overseas voting) and secondary residency in northern state.

And furthermore the internal constitutions of each state would be forced by the federal constitution to give all the voting rights secondary residences holders, with the exception of the two rights above cases.

IMO this is the only legal way of restricting political participation to preserve equality. Otherwise any measure based on ethnicity will turn from ECHR.

Take care,
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Postby Alexandros Lordos » Fri Feb 18, 2005 10:56 pm

Turkcyp,

what I think your proposal misses, is that if one of those "dual citizenship Greek Cypriots" who has been living in the north for a number of years then applies for a full citizenship of the northern state, and is rejected on whatever basis, he will then also be able to go to the ECHR and challenge this restriction to being deemed a full constituent state citizen.

But anyway, I promised to check this whole matter with my lawyer friend and I shall proceed to do so.

Have a nice day,
Last edited by Alexandros Lordos on Fri Feb 18, 2005 11:04 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Postby Alexandros Lordos » Fri Feb 18, 2005 11:03 pm

michalis5354 wrote:Will the statues of the British bases be re-negotiated again? (ie cease to be sovereigned but be fully controlled by the United Cyprus Republic or Limiting them to One single base etc) What anyone think on this issue?


Well, if we could pull it off it would be great, resolving the bases issue AND getting a solution.

However, I am sure the british and the americans will do everything in their power to stop us, and they might even be willing to wreck the negotiations for a solution instead of tolerating a dimunition of the status of the bases.

I think the absolute minimum that we should strive for, is to ensure that the solution in no way adds further legitimacy to the bases, i.e. reinforcing their presence here with a popular mandate. To achieve this, we need to ensure that the issue of the bases is meticulously ignored and left out of the solution package. That way, we will still be able to challenge their status later from the stronger position of a re-united Cyprus, arguing that their presence is irrelevant to the new state of affairs.
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