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  2. 2. THE ROLE OF CYPRUS CONFLICT IN TURKEY‘S EUROPEAN UNION MEMBERSHİP NEGOTIATIONS: POLICIES OF GREECE, UNITED KINGDOM AND TURKEY First of all, I want to give a brief historical background of Cyprus. Cyprus Island, which is located in Mediterranean sea was conqured by Ottoman Empire in 1571. However, when Ottomans were defeated by Russians in the 93 war, they wanted to prevent Russians from going forward and asked for the help of British to whom they gave Cyprus temporarily. Political improvements and Political side of Cyprus conflict; Ottomans were on the side of central powers during the World War I and Britain took this as an advantage. They annexed the island on 5 november, 1914 and the Turkish Republic accepted this in Lozan. Following this, Britain changed the status of the island and announced it as their colony. Rums in Cyprus thought this as Enosis and they started to plan secret actions. Makarios was chosen as the archbishop of Cyprus in 1950 and this caused Enosis movement to develop and increase. In order to realise Enosis, Rums established EOKA in 1955 and started to take actions against Turks in Cyprus. As a result of the pressure of these actions, Turks in Cyprus had to establish ‗‘Turk Mukavement Agency‘‘. Zurich and London aggreements were signed in 1959 in order to provide peace in the island and determine the status of the region. Following the aggreements, Cyprus Republic was established on 16 august, 1960. In addition to this, Turkey, Greece and Britain were given the right of guarantor on Cyprus Republic. However, Rums in Cyprus took these improvements in to consideration as important steps to realise Enosis. 1 There were bloody events in Cyprus in 1963, 1964 and 1967 and during these times lots of Turks were killed in cruel ways. The best known of these events is ‗‘Bloody Christmas‘‘. Actions of Turks made the Rums slow down but they didn‘t stop their actions. Related to this, A Cyprus temporary Turk management was establishes on 28 december 1967. Following the revolution against Makarious in 1974, Nikos Sampson established Cyprus Helen Republic. 1
  3. 3. Together with the ongoing actions against Turks, they used their right of and started Cyprus Peace Movement on 20 july 1974. 2 They initiated a lot of agreements interms of solving diplomacy problems but they couldn‘t reach any positive solutions. As a result, they realised the 2nd Peace Movement on 14 august 1974. Rums did not want to make peace with Turks so Cyprus Turks established Cyprus Turk Federe Government on 13 february 1975 and they established North Cyprus Turk Republic on 15 november 1983. The differences between the point views of North Cyprus and Turkey in terms of Politics; Rums were always creating problems especially in terms of Enosis and most importantly the Turks had last their belief in Rums because of the past. Also, Turks had no intention to accept any aggreements, That‘s why, all dialogues between Rums and Turks resulted in unsolved problems. United Nations took part in Turks-Rums problem since they had some attempt mediation. However, United Nations were found to take part near Rums according to the report which was prepared by Butros Gali on 26 november 1992. Following the report a decision (number 789) was mode and according to it; Rums and Turks wouldn‘t be equal in the island; Rums would be dominant power in the island; Turks would give up some of their lands; Turkish Army Forces which had been responsible for the security of the island and Cyprus Turks would withdraw from the island, In short the decision was totally against the benefits of Turks. In fact, Turks were so clear in their demands. They wanted a two sided federal solution; They wanted to take precautions to increase the security between two socities; they wanted to be away from any actions that would destroy the positive Political enviroment; they wanted a federal republic without soldiers and they wanted to take action together with Rums fort he membership of the EU. Also, there were similarities between the ideas and suggestions of North Cyprus Turk Republic and Turkey. According to a research, %37,2 of the people thought the idea of ‗‘two different governments‘‘ was an ideal solution while %39,9 of them accepted it as an consensus. The second choice of the people Cyprus was the idea of federation. %26,2 of the people thought this idea as an ideal solution and %45,7 of them 2
  4. 4. accepted it as an ‗‘consensus‘‘. The least wanted solution was found to be a uniter government and Cyprus Republic in the research. There is no other country than Turkey who accepted the existence of North Cyprus Turk Republic citizen could be a turkish citizen. Turkey introduced a ten point solution plan within Annan Plan; Harbours in Turkey would be open to Cyprus Rums ships for the goods within the framework of Turkey Custom Union, Cyprus Rums airplanes would be allowed to use Turks air lands and airports for their flights and this would be done with international rules, Harbours in North Cyprus such as Gazimagosa, Girne and Gemikonağı would be open to international circulation of to goods, persons and services under the control of the management of North Cyprus. Ercan airport would be open to direct flights under the control of Cyprus Turk government, In order to involve North Cyprus as an economical existince in E.U custom union practically, special regulations would be put into action. They would try to provide a remarked trade between two sides in the island and also the world. Cyprus Turks would be able to take part in sportive, cultural and social events freely. Turkey, Greece, Cyprus Turks and Cyprus Rums would come together for an important meeting until may, june 2006 under the control of EU Genereal secretary so as to create a stable action plan. Action plan and the results of the meeting would be presented to EU Security Council by EU General secretary; Also, the secretary would evaluate the establishment of a mechanism that would check the availability of the action plan and would be able to report it to the EU. The support of EU and UN for Cyprus Turks would help to realise the suggested precautions. Action plan would never do harm to the legal or Political positions of each side. Action plan would only aim to provide a Corporation and security between two sides in the island within the scape of a detailed solution perspective. However, this action plan was rejected by Cyprus Republic. Economical side of the event; North Cyprus Turk Republic and Turkey have close relations. %32.6 of the budget of North Cyprus Turk Republic consist of the aids from Turkey. North Cyprus Turk Republic, had intentions to regulate the Turk immigrants in 2005. This resulted from the unemployment and the increase rate of crime. This was the first biggest problem between between North Cyprus Turk Republic and Turkey. Demographical statu quo of Turkish sovereignty was wanted to be continued with Turk immigrants. Continental shelf agreement; Following the oil and natural gas in eastern mediterrenean by the South Cyprus Rum management, a similar action was announced to be put into action by Turkey and North Cyprus Turk Republic. They took the first steps fort he searches in Mediterrenean and limitation of continental shelf aggrement was signed between North Cyprus Turk Republic
  5. 5. and Turkey in New York. The aggrement was signed by Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Dervis Eroglu from North Cyprus Turk Republic. The most concrete action was taken by Ankara since they started observing the actions of Rums an the 12th area of southern part of the island by war aeroplanes and frigate. By this aggreement, all obstacles fort he searching action in Mediterranean was diminished. The economical signs of Southerns Cyprus Republic have showed a multi dimensional success in recent years. According to the latest IMF results, the national income per person in $28,331 and this is over the avarage of the EU. Since it has a high potential infrastructure, Cyprus has been a seen as an investment region for overseas business. The economical policy Cyprus seems to be coherent with the EU‘s. As a necessity of being a EU member, Euro was accepted on 1 january 2008. Cyprus Republic and Egypt Government have been in contact for oil recently. Related to this, they signed some aggrements with Egypt and Lebanon for oil and natural gas in the coastal previous years. Especially, Cyprus and Lebanon expressed regions their belief in having a remarkable amount of oil and natural gas resources. However, Turkish Sea Forces didn‘t let the search of oil because of the existence of a government on the northern part of the island. Turkey was strictly against the oil search of the Northern Cyprus in the region. Turkey allowed, Turkey Oil Anonym Corporation to search oil in the Northern part of the island in August, 2007. According to the latest data of Cyprus Republic Statistical Service, the total population in the island was 867.600 in 2006. %89,8 (778,700) of them were under the control of Cyprus Republic and %10,2 (88,900) of them were in North Cyprus Turk Republic Turks lived. According to a sociological research mode on Cyprus Turks, North Cyprus Turk Republic Foreing Ministers Özgürgün, mentioned that Cyprus Turks had no identity problem. He continued; ‗‘Cyprus Turks haven‘t got an identity problem as it is said. Contrary to this, most of them are aware of their roots and they all fell to belong both to being a Turk and Cyprus‘‘. According to the research Özgürgün mentions that ‗‘2/3 of the Cyprus Turks see themselves as the grandchildren of Ottomans who conquered the island in the 16th century. Most of the people see themselves as Cyprus Turks. In this concept, %56,6 of our people feel both Turk and Cypriot , %11,9 of them feel only the Turk and %8,4 of them feel Turk and partially Cypriot. 3 3
  6. 6. Turkey‘s Westernization Policies and European Membership negotiations; Relationships between Turkey and EU have been shaped in terms of values such as democracy, human rights, liberties and economical resistance for the last 15 years. For EU, these are the inevitable factors of social and Political stability. In 2004, European Commission found out that, Turkey was ‗‘enough‘‘ in terms of Copenhagen Political criteria and they suggested in their report that it was high time to start the process of Turkey‘s full membership. European Union Council come together on 17 december and Turkey asked for an exact date for meetings. After the summit, they determined a clear date 3 october 2005. The government was against the idea of suggesting a private statue to Turkey. However, limitations and degredations were also 2 important problems. According to the council decision, free movement would be limited ‗‘when necessary‘‘ and this was seen as an advantage, fort he government. In conclusion, the content of meetings with EU is so clear; the full membership. It will certainly take time. However, such time is highly important for both Turkey and Europe. 4 One of the biggest obstacles of Turkey‘s European Membership Negotiations is the Cyprus Conflict. The European Union accession progress cannot process correlatively because of the Cyprus Question. The relations between Turkey and EU have been restrained in recent years. Cyprus issue has been the most important issue to manage many problems in Turkey‘s European Union membership and Turkish foreign policy. The Cyprus problem‘s role on Turkey‘s membership process will be explained by understanding a historical, economical and political perspective. Turkey‘s membership negotiations are influenced by the Cyprus problem, the problem is seen like a stumbling to progress the negotiation. As we look at the reasons of the Cypriot‘s application of European Community, economic reasons came into prominence. Cyprus has more agricultural zone. Cyprus thought that when the United Kingdom is a full member, Cyprus‘s economics would be affected negatively. The agricultural products which are exported to United Kingdom are 70% of all agricultural products. That‘s why, Greek Cypriots, in behalf of all Cyprus, conducted negotiations and the association agreement was signed between European Community and the Republic of Cyprus in 19 December 1972. Within the condition of the agreement, the economic aids were not equal for both sides. 4
  7. 7. United Kingdom became a member in 1973 and The United Kingdom has been an important player in the Cyprus conflict and since Greece‘s EC membership effected the EU‘s situations of the Cyprus issue.- Cyprus has been physically divided into Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot areas since an invasion of the northern part of the island by Turkey in 1974.5After the invasion of 1974, the relationship between Turkey, Greek and European Union started to become hot. The division of the island as Greek and Turkish sides, the relations also divided into some parts. With the Greek became a member of European Union in 1981, European Union proclaimed that the Cyprus problem did not affect Greece‘s membership of European Union, so EU was no longer neutral between two parts. After Greece was a member of the EU, Turkey knew the Union cannot be an impartial anymore. Also, United Kingdom was a favor of Greek parts. When Greece became a member of the European Union in 1981, Cyprus gained an important internal and external status for the EU members and obtained lots of advantages as being against Turkey‘s accessions. The Greek part constitutes the Republic of Cyprus, now. It is recognized part except from Turkey. The Turkish part is known as the Turkish Republic of Cyprus since 1983. It is recognized by only Turkey and this part highly dependent on obviously Turkey. The division of Cyprus led to several foreign and domestic problems, of course, each member state and non-member state have their special problem but Cyprus problem and its ongoing conflicts have been related all countries. The EU‘s announcement about candidacy of Turkey and Cyprus to the EU, led for both countries to rise the tension in between them. Actually, with the Helsinki Summit decisions in 1991, the Cyprus problem was not given a pre-condition to the accession of both the Republic of Cyprus and Turkey to the EU‘s candidate status. It has showed us that, European Council decided that, a solution to the Cyprus conflict is not a necessary condition for their accessions to the EU for now. However, when the Republic of Cyprus applied for membership to the EU, Turkish sides were alarmed because Turkey hoped that accession negotiations with Cyprus would not be started before the resolution of the Cyprus conflict. Furthermore, before the Helsinki Summit, Turkey and Turkish Cypriots signed an agreement on economic, financial and trade cooperation to reorganize and to manage the bad impacts of economic embargoes and isolations on Turkish 5 Turkey‟s Membership Application: Implications for the EU- Neill Nugent, Miami of University, Jean Monnet/Robert Schuman Paper Series Vol. 5 No. 26 August 2005).
  8. 8. Cypriots in 1998. Both Turkish Cypriots and Turkey was in negative position in the relations with the EU.- The official opening of negotiations for the EU accession of Cyprus in 1998 and, most importantly, the emergence of a more flexible policy of Turkey towards the Cyprus problem gave refreshed momentum to the resolution of the inter-communal dispute. 6 All previous membership negotiations of EU have ended in Cyprus‘s full membership of EU, Turkey has the open-ended negotiation in many years. Cyprus issue is likely to be more important block for not progress the negotiations to next level. Turkey‘s candidacy was obviously related to Cyprus‘s membership of the EU and with Helsinki Summit decisions. The negotiations with Cyprus were completed in 2002 with the Copenhagen summit and after one year, Cyprus became one of the eleven candidates to sign agreement with the EU. A new stage of negotiations was opened between the Greek and Turkish Cypriots. However, The Greek influence always can be described as a negative effect on Turkey‘s membership to the EU, because of its veto right. Although the EU has always sought to find a balanced solution towards Greece and Turkey and Turkey always has hoped that Greece would not impact Turkey and EU relations, it, but Turkey has stayed as a lone voice. Southern Cyprus became a member of European Union in May 1, 2004. It was a way to make real ―Enosis‖ for Greek side with the accession of the Republic of Cyprus. For Turkey, this issue remained as a national cause or ‗milli dava‘ while for Greece it was enosis, unification of Cyprus with Greece.7 There were not any other worthy of note results in between 1997 and 2000 except Helsinki Summit. Denktaş wrote a letter to Klerides related to propose a meeting again in 2001, and then the negotiations have began in 2002 and that negotiations have resulted in Annan Plan, it was the most comprehensive solution plan. However, whether or not the Annan Plan accepts, Southern Side would be an official member of European Union as a representative of the whole island after voting the Annan Plan. From that on, there were a lot of increasing concessions and restraints within ongoing Turkey‘s European Membership process. We can easily understand that after the voting of Annan Plan, Greek side has been an unsolvable path. 6 EASTERN JOURNAL OF EUROPEAN STUDIES, Volume 3, Issue 1, June 2012, The European Union and the Cyprus problem: a story of limited impetus, George KYRIS 7 4-23-2013 The Issue of Cyprus in the EU Accession of Turkey Melike Baştürk
  9. 9. As the negotiations started in October 2005, the EU and Turkey opened and closed the negotiations all that time. The Republic of Cyprus persisted that the negotiations only could start, when Turkey recognized the Republic of Cyprus and allowed Turkey‘s ships, planes and ports for the Republic of Cyprus. Also, with the Republic of Cyprus joined the Union, the existing the Custom Union between European Union and Turkey was extended with the new members of the Union, like the Republic of Cyprus, but Turkey does not recognize it. The topic of the recognition led to unresolved and delayed. Turkish side insisted as long as EU maintains the EU‘s restraints and blocks over the Northern Cyprus, Turkey always will maintain the policy of refusal to extend the Custom Union protocol to the Republic of Cyprus. The Republic of Cyprus has played a remarkable role in the accession process of Turkey which is slowing down to Turkey's denial to implement the Additional Protocol and to open its ports to the Republic of Cyprus. The Republic of Cyprus always can use its veto power to cancel the EU‘s all trade flows with the Turkish Cypriots or obtain concessions from Turkey. After the denial of Annan Plan, Turkey took a lot of steps about Cyprus. The members of European Union prepared a ‗common position document‘ for Turkey in order to start the negotiations in 2005. According to the documentary, in short term, Turkey will remove its strategic assets and in middle term, Turkey will remove its existence of Turkish. However, Turkey did not sign the documentary, as a consequence, the Foreign Minister of EU decided that the membership negotiations between EU and Turkey was frozen in December 11, 2006. After the Annan Plan, European Union put in place ‗austerity package‘ in order to prevent the Turkish side of the injustice. In this context, the opening of Ercan Airport to international air traffic, the implementation of Direct Trade Agreement, the removal of isolations were the removal of the economic differences between Southern side and Northern side. The Turkish Cypriot side expressed their desire for a future within international system. The EU started its activities in northern Cyprus by creating aims for the development of the Turkish Cypriots. In 2002, the European Council had set aside €259 million to help northern Cyprus and the Council now invited the Commission to develop comprehensive proposals for disbursement of this sum, with particular emphasis on the economic integration of the island and on improving contact between the two communities and with the EU.8TheEU‘s activities have 8
  10. 10. been consisted of two regulations: the Financial Aid Regulation was related social, economic and political development, and the Green Line Regulation which was about that to encourage the trade between Turkish Cypriots and Greek Cypriots. Also, the Commission created an aid package, its value originally €259 million for the Turkish Cypriot Community. However, European Union paid approximately €150 million because of Greece‘s and Southern Cypriot‘s veto.9 In 27, October 2006, European Commission focused on the development of physical infrastructure, the encouraging of economic and social development and the improvement of the relationship between Turkish Cypriots and European Union. All these issues created that European Council decided to not open any new chapters for Turkey for its negotiation in 2006 as long as Turkey wouldn‘t change its behaves against custom union.Hence, the relationship between EU and Turkey was frozen in December 2006. At the beginning of 2008, Kosova declared its independence, with its declaration, Greek Cypriots got in a flap because of the recognition of Kosova, following this development, Greek side was in doubt whether the Northern side‘s recognition comes up or not. In 2008, there was an election in Greek Cypriots. Dimitris Hristofyas came into the power. He was a more moderate leadership and followed more reconciliatory policy than previous ones. In 21 March 2008, Talat and Hristofyas came together to discuss the renewed negotiations. On May, United Nations started to play more active role in this conflict. After the negotiation in 23 May, 2008, Talat and Hristofyas got handle and determined a bi-zonal, bi-communal federation comprised of two equal constituent states, having one international identity. From 11 September 2008 to 6 August 2009, nearly forty negotiations were met periodically. But, Turkish Cypriots still stay outside the EU environment. The EU law is not performed in Northern side, Turkish Cypriots do not join in the EU‘s any organs and the existing trade agreements are not yet implemented. Following these developments, we can also see that Turkish Cypriots are weaker in comparison to before in the sense of EU membership. When we looked at the results, nearly the %70 of the Turkish Cypriots though that EU membership as a good thing in 2005, in contrast, the percentages were down into nearly %48, because of the lack of clear future in Northern Cyprus. 9
  11. 11. In the near future, the Republic of Cyprus reinforced their leverage over Turkish accession to gain interest Ankara‘s uncertain positions on the Greek Cypriot efforts for gas exploitation in the sea waters around the Cyprus. At the same time, in addition, Greek side uses an effort to veto Turkish participation in between European Union and Syrian talks about the crisis of the Middle East country. All these developments led a lot of weaker situations between Turkey, Turkish Cypriots and Greek Cypriots. The United Nations tried to find a solution. Greek Cypriots signed a treaty of limiting exclusive economic region with Lebanon in 2007, also signed with Israel in 2011 to reach East Mediterranean. Besides, these developments led to limitation on Turkey‘s sovereignty. Therefore, we can see that Greek Cypriots took no notice of Turkish Cypriots. The mediation of United Nations opened to question. Turkey stayed a lone voice again in face of European Union, Greece and the Republic of Cyprus. Cyprus problem is a problem that Turkey always needs to scramble for the accession negotiations. Despite the TRNC President Talat‘s efforts for an urgent solution, wide solution negotiations started between the leaders on 3rd of September 2008, in Cyprus, progress very slowly because of GCASC Leader Christofias‘s strategies of obstruction and suspension. The activities of six working groups (Sharing of Administration and Power, EU Topics, Security and Guarantees, Territory, Property, Economic Topics) and seven technical committees (Crime/Crime Related Topics, Economic and Commercial Topics, Cultural Heritage, Crisis Management, Humanitarian Topics, Health and Environment)—established according to the negotiation on the 21st of March and started to function on the 21st of April were evaluated.10 Just as the tension seemed to be resolved and the agreement process seemed right ahead, British PM Gordon Brown and GCASC Leader Christofias suprisingly signed a memorandum in London that basically ignored the agreement process developed within the framework of negotiations held between March 21 and May 23, an event with raised the tension again. After the memorandum, the process was deeply harmed and the suspicions about the sincerity of the Rum people were raised. Turkish Prime Minister Erdogan felt the need of replying to the discussions about ―one sovereignty‖ and ―one citizenship‖, reminding the “red lines” of Turkey, as “Nobody must never expect the Cypriot Turkish community to give up on their own 10
  12. 12. governance, equal status and partnership, and to accept themselves as a minority. No one must dream of trying to change these parameters. Wide solution will only be possiblewith anew partnership of Cypriot Turkish community and TRNC, with both sides being the founders and being equally active. “11 Cypriot leaders came together for the 4th time during the period of discussions about ―one sovereignty‖ and ―one citizenship‖. Talat and Christofias finally agreed on to start wide negotiations on the 3rd of September, and to simultaneously conduct a referandum about the expected agreement. Before the September. 3rd negotiations, Talat visited Ankara, and was entirely supported after many meetings, then returned back to the island. By the time, the concepts of ―one sovereignty‖, ―one citizenship‖ and ―one international identity‖, which took place in ‘92 Plan Ghali and 2004 Plan Annan, were most formally expressed. On the other hand, Rums, kept putting a spanner in the works by property cases (such as Arestis and Loizidou) chosen punctiliously with the aim of stalemating Turkey, dismantling the island‘s two-sided structure and ignoring TRNC, while still conducting the agreement process. As a matter of fact, the decision of the Orams Case of ECHR on the 28th of April stands for the latest example of such attempts. Cypriot Leaders had decided upon starting ―intensive negotiations‖ on the 19th of July 2011. The decision in question depended on leaders‘ negotiation with UN General Secretary held on July 7 in Geneva. Before mentioned intensive negotiations started on the 25th of July, and until the 21st of October, 19 meetings were held and all the topics were discussed in detail. The processes were developed according to the intensive meetings held in the island and within the scope of negotiations organised on the 30th and 31st of October with the participation of General Secretary of the UN, Ban Ki-moon. The evaluations made by Cypriot Consultant of the General Secretary of UN reflected to the press as follows: - There will be a structure consisting of two parliaments - The House of the representatives will be constructed in accordance with the population 11
  13. 13. - The senate will consist of equal number of members from the both parties - In order to complete the legislation implementations, the consents of the both parties are required - The duties of presidency and vice presidency in any kind of federal structure (such as Internal Security Agency) will be shared among Turks and Rums - Turkish Lira will be available in both sides of the island for a year. However, the mutual currency will be Euro. Besides, both parties will be able to benefit from the financial aids by the EU, and the investments for the economic development of the Northern part will be increased - The signatures of the Minister of Foreign Affairs and Minister of EU will be required for a decision about the EU relations - The jurisdiction of the founder states will remain, and a equality-based regulation will be made on the federal level12 In addition to all these, GCASC took the office of the periodical presidency of the EU—to which it joined in 2004—on the 1st of July, 2012. GCASC is thought to have a rough period of presidency due to its bank crisis and continued tension with Turkey. President Christofias made a statement in the name of the state. He demanded aid from the Euro region to save banks from going bankrupt. The package of aid, which would be the 5th given to the states in need, is expected to worth about 10 billion Euros. The decisions about aid packages within the body of EU are made by European Commission, European Central Bank and IMF. A big part of the aid package is thought to be given to the 2nd largest bank of tha state, Cyprus Popular Bank, which was deeply affected by the debt crisis of Greece. Bank of Cyprus will use a big portion of the package as well.Christofias also stated that Cyprus would try its best to prepare a long-term budget for the EU. Herman Van Rumpoy, President of the European Commission, will play the most important role during the bargain process. After the 2009 Lisbon Agreement, the European Commission President obtained many authorities that were before EU President‘s, which changed in every 6 months. GCASC also plans to start European Asylum Cirrucilum in their term of presidency. Turkey does not recognize GCASC, and wants to administrate EU relations via the European Commission. 12İKV Değerlendirme notu ,Kıbrıs‟ta Son Perde, Can MİNDEK, sayı: 40, Ekim 2011
  14. 14. Experts believe that no developments in terms of Turkey‘s entrance to EU—a process which was pending for a long time—will occur during the GCASC period. Turkey has opened 13 titles of discussion, but could only closed one of them, the title of science and research. No titles of bargain were opened in the last two years. 18 titles are also on the wait, 8 of which was stopped by EU because Turkey rejected to open its harbours for GCASC. The remaining 10 titles were stopped by GCASC and France. TRNC is only recognised by Ankara at the moment. The tension between the two sides of the island raised because of the petroleum and gas searches being made around the island. Neither of the sides attain an agreement in terms of sovereignty rights of the island. In December, the Council critisized the point of view Turkey towards Cypriot problem. European Council stated that ‖We are disappointed that Turkey did not accept the additional protocol foresees the opening of Turkish harbours to GCASC ships.‖Ahmet Davutoglu stated that the solution steps for the Cypriot problem would also ease the GCASC‘s economic problems. ―Unfortunately, they chose to increase the crisis effects and obstacle Turkey‘s membership of EU as a policy.13 We hope that Anastasiadis will act in accordance with the pre-election messages and steps will be taken for a solution as soon as possible‖. Gilmore answered the question ‗Can the Cypriot natural gas reserves be used by EU for establishing peace in the island?‘ as: ―Energy sources may develop some problems, but they also can be used as solutions. I hope that the second possibility will work for Cyprus.‖Turkish Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ahmet Davutoglu, met UN General Secretary Ban Ki-moon‘s Representative of Cyprus, Alexander Downer, in Ankara, in April 2013. It is stated that Davutoglu underlined that Turkey still supports the solution and the call of TRNC for a negotiation is important and should be answered. He also explained Turkey‘s opinions about GCASC‘s statement of natural gas in details. Downer also met Undersecretary of Turkish Foreign Affairs Ministry, Feridun Sinirlioglu, within the scope of his contacts in Ankara.Christofias continued his term of office on EU term presidency without problems. Within this period, many decisions were made such as European Patent Agreement in EU and EU Banking Union.Christofias also contributed to the blocking of the direct trade legislation, and contributed to the European embargo and 13
  15. 15. isolation applied to Cypriot Turks. Christofias also succeeded in getting the five of the eight members of the European Parliament High Level Contact Group with Cypriot Turks to act according to the view of GCASC.Despite he stated that he wanted a solution, Christofias did not even take a concrete step for removing the prejudices towards Cypriot Turks given in the GCASC schools. However, the foremost step that should be taken by the politics in the island was removing the prejudices in the society.GCASC deals especially with the economic crisis at the moment. Although no solution for the crisis can be foreseen in the short-term, GCASC government clearly shows that they will handle the Cypriot problem after the crisis.There is a very important reason why the Cypriot problem has not been solved until now. Santions should be applied to the Cypriot side, which does not try enough in the negotiations and act without showing good wills. If UN and EU had that a kind of approach to the topic, GCASC couldn‘t have continued its persistency of deadlock. The negotiations have continued since 1968, and the topic still is open-ended. The relations between the Greek and the Turkish states have been marked by alternating periods of mutual hostility and reconciliation ever since Greece won its independence from the Ottoman Empire in 1821. Since then the two countries have faced each other in four major wars the Greco-Turkish War (1897), the First Balkan War of 1912 to 1913, the First World War (1914 to 1918) and the Greco-Turkish War (1919–1922).14 After the war, the Turkish policy of reducing the economic existence of the Greeks in Turkey was kept on. Riots broke out against the Greek minority in Istanbul and the riots are known as Istanbul Pogrom. There was a false rumor that Atatürk‘s house where he was born in Thessaloniki was destroyed by Greeks.On July 15, in 1974 EOKAB was formed by a band of Greek Cypriot nationalists and they supported Enosis and staged a coup against the Cypriot Presidency. On July 20, 1974, Turkey invaded %37 of the northern part without any resistance from British forces on the island. The Greek population was expelled on that part.Greece joined the EU as a full member in 1981. Since then Greece which has used the EU institutions as organizational platform, has aimed to use advantages about Aegean and Cyprus problems against Turkey. Indeed, Greece has adopted the problems between Turkey to EU platform as a European problem and it is their foreign policy priority. The role of the member states for the policy of the EU‘s approach to the Cyprus problem, analyzing the 14
  16. 16. dynamics of the integration process and their decision-making process should be taken into account. In this regard, Greecce is an important factor in the formulation and implementation of the EU‘s policy towards the Cyprus Problem.15 Indeed, for the first tme in 1990 in Dublin, the European Council stated that the problems between Greece and Turkey had negative effects for the EU – Turkey relations and they mentioned that the solution of these problems was the prerequisite for Turkey‘s full membership perspective. Unity brought about by integration process in line with policies of Maastricht, ‗ Common Foreign and Security Policy‘ was established and it made the transport of the bilateral problems of Turkey and Greece, which has the support of using the advantages of representing the EU institutitons and the European Parliement, has managed to move Cyrpus problem to the frame of EU Turkey relations. Greece‘s policy in this direction was also supported by the institutions of the EU. For example, on 1998, the former EU commisioner for External Relations, Hans van de Brook announced that ‗Cyprus couldn‘t be left as a hostage to Turkey‘ and he also added that ‗EU would constitute their own Cyprus policy without taking external pressures and threats in to consideration‘. In other words, the EU, which took Turkey‘s full membership to the EU‘s political, cultural and economic integration process possible effects took the cost and risk calculations towards Turkey into account.16As a result, the EU which didn‘t see the Turkey‘s full membership within the short and medium term rationally, wanted to move expectations of Turkey‘s membership to long-term perspective. That‘s why they showed a reason for the Cyprus problem and they used Greece for their EU – Turkey relations effectively.It is observed that Turkey and the North side have been using more effort as well as following a flexible policy. Having encoraged by the EU‘s policy in this direction the South side didn‘t want to compensate in negations to solve the problem by displaying reluctant attiutude. Although it was declared that the candidate countries would participate on equal terms in the enlargement process and the accesion criteria would apply equally to every country, the Greek side was shown concessions. More precisely it could be put forward there is a contradiction between the EU‘s poltical strategy applied to the Cyprus problem and the 15 Demir, Nesrin (2005), „The Problem Of Cyprus At The Relationship Between European Union And Turkey‟ Fırat University Journal Of Social Science vol. 15, no. 1, pp. 347-367. 16 Ulusoy, K 2009, „Europeanization and Political Change: The Case of Cyprus‟, Turkish Studies, vol. 10, no. 3, pp. 393-408.
  17. 17. principle put forward by Union‘s 1994 Essen Summit called ‗Good Neighborly Relations‘. The priorit condition for the membership to the union which was stated in the Essen Summit was that candidate countries should solve the political dissagreements with their neighbours and other members of the EU before the membership process. However, before solving the problems on the island, South Cyprus was included as a full member of the union under the name of the Republic of Cyprus. This situation made Greece exteremly powerful and the Cyprus problem stood in front of Turkey‘s road to membership as a bigger problem.17 Offical relations between Turkey and Greece have improved recently. Meanwhile Greek government seemed to support Turkey‘s efforts to join the EU. However, various issues have never fully been resolved. Andreas Papandereou, was the retired socialist Greek Prime minister contributed to this progress. His son, foreign minister George Papandereou, made appriciable improvement in relations. According to the questionnaire in Greek public, %25 of the public believe that Turkey has a place in the EU. After the succisive earthquakes both in Greece and Turkey in 1999, the relations improved by means of sympathy and assistance. Although Greece and Cyprus voted ‗Yes‘ for Turkey to start negotiations with the EU in 2005, many key issues remain unsolvable. Turkey has denied admission to Cypriot ships to its territory, an obligation towards the EU with a 2006 deadline. The Turkish government refused that this limit about Cypriot vessels was taken after the trade embargo decision against the portion of Cyprus illegally occupied by Turkey. In spite of UN and EU‘s attempts to mediate, the issue acceptance of the Ortodox Church of İstanbul and the role of Ecumenical Patriarch are the other unfullfilled obligations. Cyprus issue is stil the most important topic and it affects the Turkey‘s fullmembership in EU. 17 Ker-Lindsay, J 2007, „The Policies of Greece and Cyprus towards Turkey‟s EU Accession‟,
  18. 18. BIBLIOGRAPHY Kıbrıs, AB ve Çözüm, Mustafa YILMAZ, 06 Ekim 2008 Kıbrıs Sorununun Türkiye-AB İlişkilerine Etkisi ,Aslıhan P. TURAN 21 Ocak 2010 , EASTERN JOURNAL OF EUROPEAN STUDIES, Volume 3, Issue 1, June 2012, European Union and the Cyprus problem: a story of limited impetus, George KYRIS The 21.YY Aralık dergisi, 2 0 0 9, Kıbrıs Türkü Geleceğini Ararken, Dr. Murat Köylü İkv değerlendirme notu, Kıbrıs‟ta Son Perde, Can MİNDEK, sayı: 40, Ekim 2011 BM ve AB Çerçevesinde Kıbrıs Sorununa Güncel Bir Bakış ,Hasan DURAN, sayı: 21, Ağustos 2008, Dumlupınar Üniversitesi , Turkey‟s Membership Application: Implications for the EU - Neill Nugent, Miami of University, Jean Monnet/Robert Schuman Paper Series Vol. 5 No. 26 August 2005 2013 The Issue of Cyprus in the EU Accession of Turkey Melike Baştürk ,4-23- Aybet, Gülnur (2009), „Fault Lines or Integration:The EU Impact on Greek-Turkish Relations', Under the Long Shadow of Europe: Greeks and Turks in the Era of PostNationalism Demir, Nesrin (2005), „The Problem Of Cyprus At The Relationship Between European Union And Turkey‟ Fırat University Journal Of Social Science vol. 15, no. 1, pp. 347-367.
  19. 19. Ker-Lindsay, J 2007, „The Policies of Greece and Cyprus towards Turkey‟s EU Accession‟, Turkish Studies, vol. 8, no. 1, pp. 71-83. Müftüler-Bac, M 2008, „Turkey‟s Accession to the European Union: The Impact of the EU‟s Internal Dynamics‟, International Studies Perspectives, vol. 9, pp. 201-219. Oğuzlu, T 2008, „Middle Easternization of Turkey‟s Foreign Policy: Does Turkey Dissociate from the West?‟, Turkish Studies, vol. 9, no. 1, pp. 3-20. Talmon, S 2006, „The European Union-Turkey Controversy over Cyprus or a Tale of Two Treaty Declarations‟, Chinese Journal of International Law, vol. 5, no. 3, pp. 579-616. Ulusoy, K 2009, „Europeanization and Political Change: The Case of Cyprus‟, Turkish Studies, vol. 10, no. 3, pp. 393-408. EMRE ÇETİNKAYA - 20110203104