Turkish-Cypriot side could allow 20,000 refugees to return

25 July 2017
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Up to 20,000 refugees from the fenced city of Varosha, and three Maronite villages in Famagusta, may be allowed to return under Turkish-Cypriot administration said Turkish-Cypriot media.

According to Turkish-Cypriot newspaper Detay, the Turkish-Cypriot and Turkish side are preparing to make unilateral steps after the collapse of the Conference on Cyprus in Crans-Montana.

Detay reports that owners of property and dwellings in Varosha, and the Maronite villages of Karpasha, Ayia Marina and Asomatos may be given the right to return.

The paper claims that 4,000 Maronites and 16,000 Greek-Cypriots will benefit from the above mentioned measures.

Detay’s report comes after the visit of the Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu had visited the north and held a meeting with Turkish-Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci in order to lay down a roadmap for their actions regarding the Cyprus problem in the future.

It also follows an interview given to Sunday’s Kathimerini by the deputy head of the coalition in the north, Serdar Denktash who stated that “the Turkish-Cypriot side may take steps that will surprise the Greek-Cypriots and the international community, just as we did in 2003 with the opening of the boarders”.

Denktash talking about steps to be followed by the Turkish-Cypriot side said that the Turkish-Cypriots do not wish to become a province of Turkey and that Turkey has not put forward such a request.

He added that the proposals have been presented to Akinci and that decisions will be announced in due time.

Denktash added that the Turkish-Cypriot side has a series of proposals which, due to the ongoing talks, were “shelved”.

He said that the Turkish-Cypriots need to break the isolation and parallel to this new opportunities for cooperation with Greek-Cypriot business people need to be created.

Asked about the reasons behind the failure of the conference, Denktash said that the Turkish-Cypriot leader and Turkey share the same view on the matter. “The sides in Cyprus have quite different perspectives of the parameters and of what is a bicommunal and bizonal federation”, commented Denktash.

“A federal solution will only be possible when the Greek-Cypriot side and the international community accepts that threre are two equal communities on the island”, said Denktash.

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