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Cyprus Problem - how CAN we solve it?

Propose and discuss specific solutions to aspects of the Cyprus Problem

Cyprus Problem - how CAN we solve it?

Postby cannedmoose » Thu Feb 24, 2005 10:53 pm

Ok, with the new rules, let's get back to the crunch question that this section of the forum is all about, solving the Cyprus problem. We've had lots of disagreement about the past, present and future, but where can we as a forum genuinely make a contribution to the debate? Alexandros' study of numbers is a useful jump-off point, but the benefit of this forum is that everyone can have a say beyond just providing a multiple-choice answer to a set question.

So... Cypriots one and all (and honorary non-Cypriots in the forum), can I suggest that each of us writes the following:

1. Five bullet points of a couple of sentences max, of concrete, realistic steps that your side (writing from the perspective of your respective communities) should take to encourage confidence from the other.

2. A further five bullet points of a couple of sentences max, of concrete, realistic steps that you would like to see from the other side in order to build your confidence.

Now I don't think we should be looking for statements such as 'removal of all troops', 'removal of all settlers', 'disbanding of the national guard' etc. It would be all too easy and reminiscent of past threads to just make a list of demands. I'm thinking smaller than that, for tangible steps that both sides can take in the short-term to improve relations and encourage dialogue. I also recognise that the labelling of 'sides' is rather clumsy, but you are welcome to write from whichever perspective you feel best able to.

I'll have a think on these points myself and will respond in due course, but I leave the floor open to anyone who wants to respond to this. If it's not a popular topic, we'll move on. My hope is that everyone will at least make a contribution, even if it's just a couple of points.

All yours folks.
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My suggestion:

Postby Nickp » Fri Feb 25, 2005 12:26 am

Hi there, here are my suggestions.

Points for the Turkish Cypriots to increase confidence from the Greek Cypriots:

1) Open Varosha to the GC’s.

This will help heal wounds, and create an atmosphere of progress on the GC side. Also, the influx of GC people to the area as well as should have a positive impact on the local economy of Turkish Famagusta as I’m sure they will want to buy things and spend their entertainment budget somewhere.

2) The removal of the Turkish flags engraved on the Kyrenia mountain range.

I don’t want this to sound like an insult to the TC’s. But I think if they are removed, again it will help build and atmosphere of trust and progress. I can only describe this as imagine if there was mountains behind GC Nicosia with a huge engraving of “ENOSIS” and you had to look at it everyday. I’m sure it would make TC’s blood boil, the same is for the Greek side. So I would suggest removing it would have a profound impact.

3) A couple of thousand Turkish Troops to leave the island.

Again, anything in the region of 1000 - 5000, whatever is acceptable to Turkey without compromising their security arrangements. Again, watching pictures of Turkish troops leaving the island would definitely help create a sense of progress and increase trust amongst the GC community.

4) No further sales of GC land or property that is currently empty or has no buildings on it.

5) Concrete help finding the mass graves of the 1600 GC’s missing.

(someone must know something taking into account what a small tight knit community it is in the North).

Points for the Greek Cypriots to increase confidence from the Turkish Cypriots:

1) Open the North to tourism by allowing chartered aircraft to land at Ercan.

Or in my view, it’s better to pick up tourists for the North from Larnaca airport on a massive scale from scheduled/chartered aircraft. I only think this is a good idea because it’s going to allow the new generation of GC’s and TC’s to work together and maybe even create friendships up until there is a solution.

2) Allow direct exports to Europe from Famagusta.

3)Set up a Turkish administration within the government to handle the needs of TC’s in the south.


For example, there may be TC’s who may want to apply for ROC citizenship to take advantage of European benefits such as paying home fees when studying abroad. Furthermore, this department could cover a range of things to handle for TC’s in the south or visiting the south.

4) Allow TC’s to return to their property/land in the south that is currently unoccupied or not built on.

5) Removal of Greek flags adjacent to ROC flags in an act of good faith to help build trust.

6) Concrete help finding the mass graves of the 500+ of TC’s missing.

(Again, it’s a small tight knit community and somebody must know something. I mean even I’ve heard of rumours where there is suppose to be a mass grave in my village and I was born after all the stuff happened and don’t even live in Cyprus!)

-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------

I’d just like to say that I’m a British born GC in my early twenties with strong links to my family and village in Cyprus. Further more, my dad is from the North. I’m no expert on the Cyprus issue but have read a lot into it.

I know politicians are reluctant to do these for their own political motives in order to reach a final settlement. However, I believe for the past 30 years, no progress has been made what so ever!!!

The only bit of progress that was made that was truly remarkable was opening the boarder two years ago. I think in contrast to most other places that have similar problems like Israeli-Palestinians and Kosovans and Serbs, Cyprus has it real lucky.
This is because if there’s suppose to be so much hatred, then why when the boarders where open there wasn’t one incident!! Furthermore, what I found truly remarkable was Turkish settlers and TC’s being compassionate to the former owners GC’s inhabitants and even inviting them in for coffee, unlike the British ex-pats in North Cyprus who were quite rude in some cases considering.

This is why I believe by taking some of the steps above would be a great help towards integration and resolving the problem. However, be aware, this is my viewpoint which is quite optimistic and liberal.
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Postby cannedmoose » Fri Feb 25, 2005 12:32 am

Thanks for your contribution Nickp, that's exactly the sort of debate I was hoping to provoke. If anyone has a TC counter-perspective, we can start moving further with this. Erolz or Insan (as well as the rest of you), any ideas you guys have would be welcome.
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Postby insan » Fri Feb 25, 2005 12:51 am

Dear cannedmoose, everything one will talk about how we solve the cyprus problem, necessarily will be based upon the past. This is ineviatable, in my opinion. Some key issues such as Gurantorship, bi-zonality, permenant restrictions...

I think before any steps taken towards a comprehensive solution to Cyprus problem, reconciliation is a must. The historians, psychologists, sociologists and researchers of all relevant parties must regularly come together and discuss the events, myths, prejudices that ineviatbly bring a substantial influence on todays circumstances.


We are all aware of that how a debate on one of those historical issues can cause many of us to lose our calmness. Losing calmness means losing your conscious. Can you imagine where the unconciousness can lead any Cypriots who has prejudices, myths, fears and his/her own version of history in his mind? So why can't we dare to eradicate this major obstacle that is obvious will limit and even end our relations in an unpleasant way?


As for the 5 bullet points...:

1. Five bullet points of a couple of sentences max, of concrete, realistic steps that your side (writing from the perspective of your respective communities) should take to encourage confidence from the other.


1- Inviting GC historians, sociologists, psychologists and researchers to discuss the history of Cyprus in order to enlighten Cypriots about the facts, myths, prejudices and the negative affects of these, on their bi-communal relations.

2- Decreasing the number of troops in North.

3- In 5 years time, gradually returning %9 of the land to GC administration.

4- In order to strengthen two communities relations, establishing a bi-communal rapproachment club. The mebers of this club can regularly organize any type of social activities in its ability, thereby Cypriots come together and built better relationships.

5- Inviting GC administartion to form a bi-communal properties board and signing an agreement to solve the refugees and properties problem in 3 steps

a- First, the refugees who want to exchange their properties will be invited to apply for exchange of properties.

b- Secondly, the refugees who want to sell, rent their properties will be invited to apply.

c- Thirdly, the refugees who want to return to live(with full political rights) in TCCS will be invited to apply.

- Refugees will be allowed to apply any, two or all of the options mentioned above.

- Refugees will acknowledge that, for political and social stability of the TC constituent state, restrictions on permenant residence(With full political rights) is a must. It will be restricted with the %33 of the number of permenant TC residents of TCCS.

- Refugees will be allowed to reclaim the restitution of their properties according to the relevant provisions of Annan Plan.

- Temporary residence(without political rights) in TCCS will be unlimited for GCs.



2. A further five bullet points of a couple of sentences max, of concrete, realistic steps that you would like to see from the other side in order to build your confidence.


1- Acceptance of lifting the embargos being imposed upon TC community.

2- Decreasing the number of Greek and National Gurad troops in south to the level of North decreased.

3- Accepting to participate at bi-communal properties board.

4- Inviting TC-GC historians, sociologists, psychologists and researchers to discuss the history of Cyprus in order to enlighten Cypriots about the facts, myths, prejudices and the negative affects of these, on their bi-communal relations.

5- Encouraging GC community to participate, join the bi-communal activities.
[/quote]
Last edited by insan on Fri Feb 25, 2005 1:07 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby -mikkie2- » Fri Feb 25, 2005 1:05 am

I am in more agreement with what NickP has suggested. Insans suggestions come accross as demands for the GC's to follow rather than confidence building.

I would modify NickP's list such that Famagusta port is opened under EU auspices and to be used by both communities together with the handing back of Varosha.

Tymbou airport to be allowed to take charter flights, again under auspices of EU.

A significant number of Turkish troops to be withdrawn, at least 5000. 1-2000 is a token gesture when you consider the number of troops Turkey has stationed on the island.
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Postby Viewpoint » Fri Feb 25, 2005 1:15 am

mikkie2-
I would modify NickP's list such that Famagusta port is opened under EU auspices and to be used by both communities together with the handing back of Varosha.

Tymbou airport to be allowed to take charter flights, again under auspices of EU.

Could you kindly clarify why we need the auspices of the EU? and will that also be valid for ports and airports in the south?[/quote]
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Postby Saint Jimmy » Fri Feb 25, 2005 1:22 am

I, too, mostly agree with nickp's suggestions, although I am strongly against lifting the sanctions and allowing chartered flights. Once the TRNC has (effectively) become a fully independent country with rosy economic prospects (after the example of the south), what would the real incentive be for the masses to engage in a struggle for re-unification, with all the risks that have to be taken and the sacrifices that have to be made for it?
On the other hand, it is somewhat different for the GC side. They are the 'losers' from the post-74 status-quo, they are the ones that seek 'justice'. While not implying that TCs weren't done injustice, they never had 'equality status' to lose, or a separate state to re-gain. In that sense, that would be the wrong move.
But, that's only what I think. :roll:
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Postby -mikkie2- » Fri Feb 25, 2005 1:24 am

It means just that! As we would like Famagusta port to be jointly used by TC and GC then we need the EU to oversee the operation of the port so we don't get into legal disputes.

For Tymbou to operate legally, it must be approved by the RoC. Since the RoC is dead against the operating of the airport, a good compromise is to allow charter flights and for the EU to control the legal issues regarding its operation.

Basically, the RoC is the only authority that is legally entitled to allow operation of these ports of entry as specified in international agreements. A possible way around this is to do what I mentioned above. That way the ports operate but in a way that is acceptable to both sides.
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Postby Viewpoint » Fri Feb 25, 2005 1:29 am

You only partly answered my question, will the same be applicable to ports and airports in the south???

If not then how is this fair, you jointly run Famagusta and Ercan and we have no say in Larnaca or Limassol.

Sound fair to you???
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Postby insan » Fri Feb 25, 2005 1:56 am

, too, mostly agree with nickp's suggestions, although I am strongly against lifting the sanctions and allowing chartered flights. Once the TRNC has (effectively) become a fully independent country with rosy economic prospects (after the example of the south), what would the real incentive be for the masses to engage in a struggle for re-unification, with all the risks that have to be taken and the sacrifices that have to be made for it?


Jimmy, in my opinion economic sanctions that being imposed upon TC community have worsened the circumstances of the solution to Cyprus problem. And it keeps worsening...

Moreover if GC community doesn't trust TC community; why should TC community trust to GC community.

Furthermore suppose world has recognized "RoC" and "TRNC" as GC administartion and TC administartion with no economic sanctions being imposed. Does that mean reunification would be impossible?

I think you are not aware that the countries under sanctions hoe become destructive "evils" one by one. In which part of the world the sanctions gave expected results. If you think that "RoC" will weaken TC community with sanctions in order to impose its will upon TC community; you are making a fatal mistake.


On the other hand, it is somewhat different for the GC side. They are the 'losers' from the post-74 status-quo, they are the ones that seek 'justice'.


TCs lost everything they own 1963-74 period because of the GC tyranny. They continue to lose because of the economic sanctions. We also seek justice not only GC refugees.

While not implying that TCs weren't done injustice, they never had 'equality status' to lose,


TCs had equality status both under British Rule and RoC and shoul have it in united cyprus.


or a separate state to re-gain. In that sense, that would be the wrong move.


Did GCs had a seperate state?

But, that's only what I think.


Likewise. :roll:
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