Tuesday, April 20, 2004

A different voice from Cyprus

politics / cyprus / bicommunal

Turgut Durduran has been, as long as I remember, a Turkish Cypriot voice on the web (and usenet) that was impossible to dismiss... His knowledge of the Cyprus issue (from up close - he is the son of a Turkish Cypriot dissident) was always accompanied by a deep humanism, making him a different kind of voice on the issue. He would like to go beyond the Annan plan, swiftly. Here's an excerpt, but read the whole thing:

"There is an obvious problem with this document [the Annan plan]; it proposes a very complex but at the same time backwards system. It is hard to image, ofcourse if we forget the realities on the ground, why anyone would want to create a 'new Cyprus' based on a massive amount of limitations on civil and economic liberties and freedoms. Are we forgetting the basic, modern principles that we expect modern states to live up to? Specially states that are members of the European Union.
I do not dream of a Cyprus where divisions are entrenched all over the legislative. A Cyprus where ethnicity defines rights. A Cyprus that has not become independent of the grip of the 'motherlands'. But am I shocked that this document does exactly the opposite? No, I am not. It was obvious to me that with every opportunity missed, we were moving towards such a settlement. What I was trying to ignore, however, was that when this happens a good chunk of Cypriots will see this as a way out of the current stalmate and ignore these problems. I knew I would be sympathetic towards this. I knew this would be a giant step forward. But I did not know that once we break certain bariers, for example achieve the semi-porous state of the Green Line since April 2003, that we still would not be able to develop political organizations that cared for all Cypriots. I was being too optimistic.
So, yeah, my principles and my dreams are being crushed. At least for now, that is what 'post-Annan-plan' Cyprus is supposed to be like..."

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