- Unlike Turkey, Greece sees Cyprus solutions only within UN framework
- Athens will help Cypriot government better prepare for next round of talks
- EU must make its position on Turkish occupied territory in Cyprus clearer
- Customs union with Turkey should be used as lever for Cyprus issue
- Profits from gas drilling belong to the whole of Cypriot people
He spoke to EURACTIV.com’s Sarantis Michalopoulos.
It has been 10 days since the Crans Montana conference on the Cyprus issue. Why did it fail? What could have been done better?
I would not use the phrase ‘it failed’. I would say that it did not have the results we all expected. From our point of view, some important steps were taken. Most importantly, the issue of security and guarantee has finally been put on the agenda of the negotiations.
For the Greek government, and for me personally, the main feature of the international aspect of the Cyprus issue is that of occupation and the right or not for intervention possibilities. I think that Turkey is still living in a pre-modern period as if we are still in the age of colonialism and protectorates.
It believes it can have troops in a third country, despite the latter’s will, occupying some of its territories and claiming the right to intervene whenever it wants in the domestic affairs of a member state of the European Union and the United Nations.________________________
Journalists often ask me what could have been done better. At first, I would say a better understanding between Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots. I do not mean from the point of view negotiations, but I feel that those who lost the most because of the presence of the Turkish occupation army and the possibility of a democratic choice were the Turkish Cypriots themselves.