The ghost town generates new tensions between Egypt, Greece and Turkey

The ghost town generates new tensions between Egypt, Greece and Turkey
picture of Frosha

Egypt This Wednesday, he expressed his “deep concern” about the opening of part of the Farosha, The Sealed neighborhood from the city of Famagusta located in the Turkish-controlled part of Cyprus, raising the status of the military district.

The Arab Republic of Egypt expresses its deep concern over the announcement of a change in the situation in the Varosha region of Cyprus and in the Arab Republic of Egypt. Open it partiallyin contravention of the relevant resolutions of the United Nations Security CouncilAccording to a statement by the Egyptian Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

in this meaning, Egypt called for “the necessity of abiding by United Nations resolutions” and “to avoid any unilateral action that would complicate the situation and increase tension.”

The Egyptian reaction comes after Erdogan closed a visit to Northern Cyprus on Tuesday in which he flatly criticized the island’s reunification negotiations. It was left to the Turkish Cypriot leadership to declare a partial opening of the closed district of Varosha, against any UN resolution.

Turkish Cypriot national leader, Ersin Tatar announced that it will raise the status of the military district by 3.5% of this ghost neighborhood in Famagusta, It was closed after the Turkish invasion, from which about 12,000 Greek Cypriots were displaced.

Varosha story

A map showing the location of the city
A map showing the location of the city

After the Turkish invasion of Cyprus July 20 1974 to respond to ‘Pro-Greek’ coupThe Greek Cypriot army withdrew its forces to Larnaca. The Turkish army advanced to the Green Line, which is the current border between the two communities. Hours before the Turkish Cypriot army and the Greek Cypriot army exchanged fire in the streets of Famagusta, the entire population fled in fear of a massacre. Many of its residents sought refuge in the south in various cities. one of those cities, ParalimniIt has since become the new capital of the Cypriot district Famagusta.

When the Turkish army took control of the area during the invasion, they fenced it off. It has since banned access, with the exception of the Turkish military.

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The reason for abandoning Varosha is due to United Nations Security Council Resolution 550 (taken on May 11, 1984), which states that “Attempts to settle in any part of Varosha by any non-inhabitant are unacceptable.”. Therefore, the Turkish Armed Forces (TSK) were unable to resettle the area under their control, which led to the abandonment of the Varosha region.

People walk on a beach inside an area controlled by the Turkish army since 1974 in the deserted coastal region of Varosha (Photo: Reuters)
People walk on a beach inside an area controlled by the Turkish army since 1974 in the deserted coastal region of Varosha (Photo: Reuters)

The absence of the population and therefore the absence of compensation, It makes buildings crumble little by little. Nature is gaining ground, metal is eroding, windows are breaking, and plants are taking root on walls and sidewalks. as seen sea ​​turtle It breeds on its deserted beaches. Dealers are frozen with old cars from 1974, and after years of being abandoned, there are people who say they’ve seen light bulbs still shining through empty building windows.

since then, The island is divided by a demarcation line: to the south is the Greek Cypriot-majority Republic of Cyprus belonging to the European Union; In the northern third, the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus, is inhabited by Turkish Cypriots and is only recognized by Ankara.

Several times the president of Turkey, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, with the Prime Minister of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (KKTC), Ersene Tatar, ordered the reopening of Varosha.

A man holds a fence in an area controlled by the Turkish army since 1974 in the deserted coastal region of Varosha (Photo: Reuters)
A man holds a fence in an area controlled by the Turkish army since 1974 in the deserted coastal region of Varosha (Photo: Reuters)

Almost immediately, the United Nations Security Council reaffirmed the status of Farosha As provided by previous Security Council resolutions, including Resolution 550 (1984) and Resolution 789 (1992). moreover, He reiterated that no measures should be taken with respect to that region that did not comply with those resolutions.

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According to a survey conducted by the University of Nicosia, When questioning 1,000 former Varosha residents, 73% would refuse to move to the city if, once opened, it was under the control of the Turkish Cypriot administration.

They made the city uninhabitable. It’s easy for them to propose to come back because they know we’ll refuse. We refuse to live under Turkish law.” Says Andreas Anastasio, 67, a former resident of the place.

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Aygen Marsh

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