President of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) Dervis Eroglu said Wednesday that "motherland Turkey provided financial assistance to the Turkish Cypriots as TRNC's incomes were limited".
The comment comes amid tension between the two states.
In a demonstration to protest austerity measures late January, a group of Turkish Cypriots, which the Turkish government believes have links to Greek Cyprus, chanted anti-Turkey slogans, asking the Turkish government not to interfere in their affairs. "Ankara, we don't want your money or [austerity] package," protesters wrote on banners.
Turkish government lashed out at protests after the mass demonstration held on January 28. Deputy Prime Minister Cemil Cicek said, "those people swear at us, at Turkey, saying [take your money and leave]; but one day later they do not hesitate to take the money we sent." Cicek was referring to Turkey's financial aid sent to TRNC to keep the North Cyprus economy alive.
Speaking at a meeting with members of the Economy Journalists' Association in north-western province of Istanbul on Wednesday, President Eroglu said that the TRNC's relations with Turkey were not based on materiality.
Our festivals are your festivals. Our language is your language. Our religion is your religion. Our nation is your nation. We are humans who have always been proud with our Turkish identity. As such, there is no difference between you and us, Eroglu said.
The Turkish Cypriot people are attached to the motherland with brotherly ties. Our relationship is one of brotherhood, Eroglu said.
I believe that we should not let anyone think that there was a quarrel between Turkey and the TRNC, Eroglu stressed.
Touching on the TRNC's negotiations with the Greek Cypriots, President Eroglu said that "according to the Greek Cypriots, we will be at the negotiation table for another 30 years".
Yet the Turkish Cypriot people and the motherland do not have patience for another 30 years. As such, an agreement must be reached under the leadership of the UN Secretary General. The Secretary General has to decide whether or not to reach an agreement. Everyone then should go on on his path, Eroglu also said.
AgenciesLast Mod: 24 Şubat 2011, 11:05