UBP General Secretary issues statement on 20th anniversary of Annan Plan
Date Added: 22 April 2024

This Wednesday will mark the 20th anniversary of the referendum held for the UN-sponsored Annan Plan on April 24, 2004.

National Unity Party General Secretary Oğuzhan Hasipoğlu, who issued a statement on the occassion, said, “If the Greek Cypriot side wants to start cooperation with us, they must earn our trust through actions, starting with the acceptance of our sovereign equality.” Hasipoğlu reminded UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres and his Personal Envoy Maria Holguin of the late UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan’s post-referendum report, stating that “the Greek Cypriot side must now demonstrate its real intentions not with words, but with actions.”

The National Unity Party’s (UBP) General Secretary Oğuzhan Hasipoğlu on Monday recalled that 20 years ago, a federal solution in Cyprus was overwhelmingly rejected by 75% of the Greek Cypriot population when they voted “No” to the UN sponsored Annan Plan.

He stressed that the Turkish Cypriot people’s right to self-determination and democratic approval was not up for discussion, as they had demonstrated time and time again solution proposals tabled as part of negotiations between the two sides.

“However despite the repeated good will demonstrated over the past 50 years, Turkish Cypriots have continued to be punished through harsh isolation and embargoes. The promises that were made to the Turkish Cypriot people after the referendum were not kept,” he said.

Hasipoğlu noted that the late UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan in his report 20 years ago published after the referendum had made it clear that what the Greek Cypriot community had rejected was not just the plan but a solution itself as they were not ready to share power and wealth with Turkish Cypriots.

He pointed out that just recently, the Greek Cypriot side’s true intentions had been revealed in the response he had received in his question directed at the leader of the Greek Cypriot administration Nikos Christodulides at the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE).

“Mr Christodoulides had responded by saying that the only obstacle to the solution was Türkiye, and had falsely accused Ankara of being intransigent both during the Annan Plan and later at Crans Montana,” he said.

Hasipoğlu noted that Christodoulides saw the Turkish Cypriots as a minority no different to the Maronites and Armenians.

“Despite 20 years passing and so much time consumed, how can those who still see the federation solution model as the only alternative within us think that the Greek Cypriot side is ready and willing for this power sharing-based solution model based on their actions?” he asked.

The UBP General Secretary added, “At a time when the UN is questioning whether there’s common ground, if the Greek Cypriot side wants to work with us, they have to show they’re trustworthy by doing things, starting with recognizing our equal importance. Kofi Annan said in his report that the Greek Cypriot side needs to prove what they really mean by their actions, not just by talking. We want to remind UN Secretary-General Guterres and his Personal Envoy Maria Holguin about what Kofi Annan said 20 years ago and how the Greek Cypriot side has treated us over that time, as they keep trying to find common ground between us.”