World Bulletin / News Desk
Turkey will replace its ambassador in Lefkosa, Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC), officials said, confirming earlier reports on Thursday.
Diplomatic officials told Anadolu news agency that Halil Ibrahim Akca, the head of technical delegation for TRNC, would replace Turkish ambassador in Lefkosa Kaya Turkmen.
The reason for replacement is "to coordinate assistances to TRNC from a single office", officials said.
The move comes after a spat over a Turkish Cypriot protest against Ankara.
Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has harshly condemned the anti-Turkey slogans during a demonstration in the KKTC late last month to protest Turkey-backed austerity measures.
Noting that some protesters told Turkey to "get out," Erdoğan said: "Who are you to tell me to get out? I have martyrs [who died during Turkey's 1974 intervention in Cyprus to protect Turkish Cypriots from Greek Cypriot attacks], I have strategic interests."
Eroğlu and KKTC Prime Minister İrsen Küçük have tried to contain the damage, while opposition parties have jointly condemned Erdoğan's remarks.
On Wednesday, Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Cemil Çiçek poured more oil on the fire, saying those protesters who chanted insulting slogans against Turkey made no objection when they got their salaries paid out of the money sent by Turkey only a few days after the protest. "One day, they curse Turkey and the other day they see no problem in accepting the money we have sent," Çiçek said in remarks broadcast on the private NTV television.
Çiçek also reiterated his claim that some of the protesters had links to Greek Cyprus. "There is a plot here because the Greek Cypriot administration feels like it has been pushed into the corner [in reunification talks]. Greek Cyprus is provoking certain elements in the KKTC to harm the Turkish-Turkish Cypriot brotherhood," said Çiçek.
Last Mod: 10 Şubat 2011, 16:28