MOBILITY

Ankara ups the ante over refugees, the Cyprus issue

ankara-ups-the-ante-over-refugees-the-cyprus-issue

Despite Turkish Ambassador to Greece Burak Ozugergin’s positive messages regarding Greek-Turkish relations on Wednesday, he expressed Turkey’s intransigence on the Cyprus issue while Ankara accused Athens of illegally deporting refugees.

In a series of tweets on Wednesday, the Turkish Defense Ministry accused Greece of illegally deporting refugees to Turkey from the Evros region. Athens has rejected the allegations. Almost a year ago, Turkey opened its borders and threatened Greece and the EU with a new wave of refugees.

Meanwhile on Wednesday, Ozugergin insisted in an online conversation during the Athens Energy Dialogues conference that the two countries must improve relations “because we are neighbors and allies.”

“We need to be patient, consensual and, in particular, honest,” he said.

However, regarding Cyprus, he said “the ship of a federal solution has now set sail.” Turkey and Turkish Cypriots, he said, have been involved in the efforts to resolve the Cyprus issue since the 1960s, before man stepped on the moon.