NICOSIA -- Cyprus’ division as a result of Turkey’s military occupation is an anomaly that cannot continue, Defence Minister Demetris Eliades said, after meeting his Greek counterpart Panos Panagiotopoulos in Athens.
Eliades, who is on an official visit to the Greek capital, added that there is no future for Turkey’s European prospects, as long as Ankara occupies the northern part of the Republic of Cyprus.
During their meeting, the two Ministers discussed defence and military cooperation matters between Cyprus and Greece and issues of mutual interest concerning the SE Mediterranean.
Eliades also briefed his counterpart on Cyprus’ options concerning its hydrocarbon activities in the country’s Exclusive Economic Zone.
Panagiotopoulos said in his statements that the Cyprus problem is a problem of invasion and occupation by Turkish troops and added that human rights are brutally violated in this part of the island. He noted that the “line of shame” dividing the island is a matter of concern for the EU and the whole modern world.
Eliades is expected to meet today with the Greek President Karolos Papoulias, and tomorrow he will be received by Greek Foreign Minister Demetris Avramopoulos.
Cyprus has been divided since 1974, when Turkish troops invaded and occupied its northern third.