The American Institute for the Defense of Democracy has called on the United States and the European Union to impose coordinated sanctions against Turkish construction contractors, against the backdrop of the “provocative” visit of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to Northern Cyprus and the steps which he accomplished there.
During a two-day visit to northern Cyprus last week, Erdogan escalated tensions in the eastern Mediterranean by threatening to indirectly take over territory on the divided island, prompting condemnation from the United States, the European Union and the Security Council of Nations. United.
According to the Institute report for Defense of Democracy, Erdogan’s recent “provocation” is “part of his efforts in course to destabilize the region and undermine US-backed partnerships. “
On 19 July, the Turkish president and his partner in the national coalition, Devlet Bahceli, arrived in northern Nicosia. During the visit, Erdogan stated that “a two-state solution is the only way to resolve the conflict” in Cyprus, reversing the Turkish Cypriot positions, which aim to get rid of five decades of negotiations aimed at reunifying the island as federal state .
The Turkish president has also taken other steps to reopen sections of the deserted coastal city of Varosha “to provide loot to his clients in the construction sector. in violation of UN Security Council resolutions calling for the city to be handed over to the UN administration in so that its former residents can return to their homes, “according to the report. Defense of Democracy.
Cyprus has been divided since 1974, when the Turkish army captured the northern third of the island. Ankara’s move has arrived in response to an attempted coup organized by the Athens Military Council with the aim of uniting the Republic of Cyprus with Greece.
Turkey maintains some 40,000 troops in the northern breakaway region, which Ankara alone recognizes as the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus.
More recently, hostile interference by the Erdogan government in last year’s TRNC elections, which included death threats against former President Mustafa Akinci and his family, led to a narrow victory for the hardline pro-Erdogan rival. Ersin Tatar. and the efforts of the Tatars to impose Erdogan’s point of view on Turkish Cypriot society, which is known for its way of life ”.
In response to the actions of the presidents of Turkey and the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus, US Secretary of State Anthony Blinken issued a statement on 20 July in which describes the actions of Erdogan and Tatar as “provocative, unacceptable and inconsistent with their previous commitments to commit in constructive way in the resolution talks “in Cyprus.
On the same day, European Union foreign policy chief Josep Borrell criticized Erdogan and Tatar, saying their unilateral move “risks escalating tensions”, echoing a statement from the Commission president earlier this month. European Ursula von der Leyen who said that the EU The European Union will never accept a two-state solution.
On 23 July, the United Nations Security Council unanimously condemned Erdogan and Tatar for declaring the reopening of Varosha, calling for “an immediate reversal of this line of conduct”.
The Turkish president’s moves also provoked a negative reaction from the Turkish Cypriots, as two opposition parties boycotted the parliamentary session in which Erdogan participated. Akinci also warned that Erdogan’s policies “which have been condemned by all international organizations and states” would lead to the isolation of Turkish Cypriots.
“However, it is unlikely that Erdogan will respect international law, world public opinion or the willingness of the Turkish Cypriots to chart his future course of action,” added the Institute for the Defense of Democracy.
He continued: “To contain the Turkish president’s subversive behavior in Cyprus and the Eastern Mediterranean, the Biden administration should develop a coordinated strategy with the European Union, including the imposition of coordinated sanctions against Erdogan’s construction industry clients. involved in illegal land grabbing.. and property in Varosha. Washington should also appoint a special envoy for the Eastern Mediterranean and strengthen its cooperation in course with local allies and partners “.
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