ANKARA — The current situation on the divided island of Cyprus is no longer sustainable, Turkish Prime Minister Binali Yildirim said Tuesday, in Ankara, speaking at a joint news conference with his Turkish Cypriot counterpart, Huseyin Ozgurgun.
Yildirim said the situation in Cyprus “is not something that could be sustained forever”.
“For years, the Turkish Cypriot side has been almost ignored and subjected to isolations while the Greek Cypriot side has continued to enjoy – albeit in an unfair manner – all the opportunities provided by the European Union and the world at large. It is apparent that this is not a sustainable situation,” he said.
The Turkish premier said Ankara would continue to support the Turkish Cypriot cause and be their guarantor.
Stressing Turkey’s intentions to sustain peace, on talks between Turkish Cypriot and Greek Cypriot sides, Yildirim said both Turkey and the Turkish Cypriot governments have always been constructive, and called on the Greek Cypriot side not to miss this “last chance”.
When asked whether a widespread operation against FETO, Fethallah Gullen’s organisation, is expected or not, Ozgurgun said the government in Northern Cyprus added the group to its terrorist list on July 21, adding that all Gullen-movement activities are banned in the country.
On another note, Ozgurgun said he sees the official visit to Prime Minister Yildirim as “a meeting of brothers”.
“Turkey’s presence on the island is the main element in assuring Turkish Cypriots’ security until there is a permanent and fair resolution found for both Turkish and Greek Cypriots,” Ozgurgun said. “Turkey’s being strong and healthy in every aspect is the most important thing for us.”