Cyprus: A new unified state or a protectorate?

“At this point the big question is if the re-elected Anastasiadis, can spot the dangers that lie ahead if the current peace plan which in reality divide Cyprus, comes into force.”

By Panayiotis Alimisis*

The re-election of Nikos Anastasiadis as the President of the Republic of Cyprus confirmed on last Sundays polls. But in reality, those who trust Anastasiadis are only a minority. The Greek Cypriot president got the «second chance» simply because he maintains a good personal relationship with the moderate Turkish-Cypriot leader Mustafa Akintzi. This friendship was evident during the negotiations before and after Geneva talks last year, when the two leaders gave the promise to write a ‘new page’ in Cypriot history. Greek Cypriots decided that is not wise to send their leader home, because that would mean change of the agenda and probably the end of the negotiations with the other side once and for all.

But unfortunately, still many voters believe that Anastasiadis hasn’t yet realize the consequences if a new «Kofi Annan» based peace plan like the current one, agreed by the two sides. There are accusations mainly from the South, that the Western Powers try to establish a ‘protectorate’ by taking away significant power by the big majority (the Greek side) and ‘surrender’ the Turkish-Cypriots to Erdogan’s Turkey.

At the same time Turkey undermines the process for its own interest. Traditionally, when the discussions resurrect, Ankara works for a solution capable to fit its own geopolitical prospects, rather than to safeguard the interest of the two communities of Cyprus. During the negotiations in Switzerland last year, the Turkish government was doing everything to influence the Turkish-Cypriot side aiming to legalize the military occupation of the north part of the island. This is evident by the maneuvers of the Turkish navy in Cypriot waters, which are also EU waters.

Turkish warships, in violation of the international maritime law, often tried to stop any activity by the Greek side in the Cypriot Economic Zone claiming that their compatriots on the island, have rights on the resources, even if their state is not recognize by the international community! However the presence of western oil companies in the Eastern Mediterranean, halted -at least for now- the Turkish aggression.

At this point the big question is if the re-elected Anastasiadis, can spot the dangers that lie ahead if the current peace plan which in reality divide Cyprus, comes into force. For example, according to the plan, in the new “state”, the rule of the majority, the foundation of democracy, will be more or less officially abolished. The 18% Turkish minority will have a veto right on all essential decisions, and foreign judges will have to take the decisions in the very likely contingencies where Greek-Cypriots and Turkish-Cypriots disagree.

Furthermore, the new state will not have any army or police of its own, but will be under the power of an International Police Force!

Although it might sound as a ‘conspiracy theory’, the current plan has the intention to return the Cypriot Democracy into a modern colony, which is what it was before its revolution of 1955-59 and before it achieved independence in 1960! The people who are involved in the process must serve the interest of all communities in Cyprus; otherwise, they might create a kind of Frankenstein state.

 

*Panayiotis Alimisis is journalist. He studied Modern History and International Relations at London Metropolitan University

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