With Cyprus marking 45 years since Turkey invaded and occupied its northern part, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan struck a provocative tone on Saturday, saying that his country’s army would do the same today “if needed.”
In remarks published by the Anadolu news agency, Erdogan said that the Turkish army will never hesitate to take the same steps “if needed for the lives and security of Turkish Cypriots.”
“Those who think that the wealth of the island and the region only belongs to them will face the determination of Turkey and the Turkish Cypriots,” he said.
The Turkish invasion, in response to an Athens-backed coup, led to the forced displacement of around 200,000 people, while more than 30,000 Turkish troops still occupy the northern part of the island.
Meanwhile, Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Dendias said Saturday that Greece will never accept the consequences of the Turkish invasion and that it will continue to strive for the island’s reunification.