For one more time, Turkish president Recep Tayyip Erdogan used the usual “diplomatic” language to take position in crucial issues like the European Union membership and the Cyprus issue.
This time it was the Cypriot flag that became his target. “Without shame they come to EU sessions with the flag of the whole island,” Erdogan said speaking at the 7th Bosporus Economic Summit in Istanbul.
“In principle, they cannot have such a flag. Here there is a TRNC . You are administrator of the Southern Cyprus. In the north there is the Turkish republic. This is disrespectful, “he said.
He claimed that there is blood of Turkish heroes in Cyprus and therefore Ankara cannot consent to grant territorial sovereignty entirely to Greek Cypriots.
Erdogan did not bother to explain to the esteemed participants of the Forum the reaon as to why only “Greek Cyprus” is an international recognized state, meber of the EU and the UN and not the TRNC, the illegally Turkish-occupied North Cyprus.
Greek Foreign Ministry spokesman Stratos Eythimiou, commented on Erdogan’s allegations saying: “Once again the Turkish leadership is trying to equate the aggressor with the victim, going to unhistorical and arbitrary offsets, attempting to delete Turkey’s responsibilities as an occupying power. “
The Turkish president also criticized the voting of the European Parliament to freeze accession talks with Turkey and called it “harassment.”
Erdogan said Turkey has been waiting for an answer from the EU for over 50 years, and said the EU is not the only fish in the sea.
“We have not closed the EU subject yet. But the picture we have faced does not allow us to fall for positive expectations on this subject. There are always many alternatives before Turkey. We would continue our way by considering one of these options,” Erdogan said.