President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has said he will visit Turkish Cyprus to mark the anniversary of the Turkish military intervention on the island in 1974 and that he would give “good news” there.
“I hope that with our ceremonies this year, we will have messages in the best way possible for the establishment of world peace both to the Island and the whole world,” he told reporters after Friday prays.
He would embark to North Cyprus on July 19 with a large delegation and address parliament there,
Erdoğan said, noting that he would return to Turkey on July 20.
“I want to give the good news to North Cyprus in the parliament there. We have a good step. We have finished the preliminary studies,” Erdoğan stated.
Erdoğan also earlier said he would announce some very important issues during his visit to Cyprus in July.
Cyprus has been split along ethnic lines since a Turkish invasion in 1974 triggered by a brief Greek-inspired coup. Only Ankara recognizes North Cyprus as an independent state.
In July, European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen warned Erdoğan not to jeopardize a push for better ties with the bloc by inflaming tensions on the upcoming trip to Cyprus.
“This is a very sensitive topic for us. And we are very clear that we will of course observe how this visit will go and that we will never, ever accept as a European Union a two-state solution,” von der Leyen told a press conference after an EU summit in Brussels.
“These clear messages have been sent. I said it personally to the president. So, it’s up to him now to set a positive signal.”
Cyprus remains one of the major bones of contention between the EU and Ankara after the Turkish side pushed for a two-state solution to restart peace talks.
The European Union will “never, ever” accept a two-state deal on Cyprus, she said on July 8.
“I want to repeat that we will never, ever accept a two-state solution. We are firm on that and very united,” von der Leyen told a news conference visiting Greek Cyprus.