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Monday, December 15, 1997 Published at 18:53 GMT



World

Cyprus divisions widen as UN talks fail
image: [ The Turkish community in northern Cyprus is angry with the EU ]
The Turkish community in northern Cyprus is angry with the EU

The leader of the self-declared Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus, Rauf Denktash, says the inter-communal talks sponsored by the United Nations are at an end.


[ image: Denktash: EU must recognise the self-proclaimed Turkish Republic in northern Cyprus]
Denktash: EU must recognise the self-proclaimed Turkish Republic in northern Cyprus
In a statement, Mr Denktash blamed the European Union's decision to start membership negotiations with the internationally recognized Greek Cypriot Government.

Turkey and the Turkish Cypriots, who closely follow Ankara's lead, are furious that the EU has decided to begin membership negotiations with the Greek Cypriots next year, especially while Turkey itself remains on the sidelines.

The EU would like the Cypriot delegation to include representatives of the Turkish Cypriot community. But Mr Denktash, backed by Ankara, has refused to take part.

He says the EU must accept the reality that there are two separate states on Cyprus, even though the Turkish-controlled north is not internationally recognized.


[ image: The EU's enlargment plans have failed to find widespread support in Turkey]
The EU's enlargment plans have failed to find widespread support in Turkey
Mr Denktash said that unless that happens there is little point in holding further talks sponsored by the United Nations, which has been trying to promote the idea of a federation on the island between the two communities.

The Turkish Cypriot authorities signed a joint declaration with Turkey last January which commits them to begin the formal integration of northern Cyprus with the Turkish mainland if the EU begins negotiations with the Greek Cypriot government.

Over the last two days both Mr Denktash and the Turkish prime minister, Mesut Yilmaz, have reaffirmed their determination to implement the agreement in full.


 





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