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Foreign Minister Kotzias’ statement on the 42nd anniversary of the Turkish invasion of Cyprus (20 July 2016).
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Today is the 42nd anniversary of the Turkish invasion of Cyprus, which ushered in the ongoing illegal occupation of over a third of the territory of the Republic of Cyprus, a member state of the United Nations and the European Union.

The repercussions of the Turkish invasion include the uprooting of over 200,000 Cypriots from their ancient hearths, the humanitarian tragedy of the missing, the systematic and – according to Turkish Cypriot protests – still ongoing Turkish settlement, and looting of the Greek and Christian heritage, of the occupied areas.

Greece does not and will never accept the consequences of the Turkish invasion. It has made it clear to all sides that the elimination of the anachronistic system of guarantees and the withdrawal of all Turkish occupation forces – which, as the recent events in Turkey confirmed, undermine rather than ensure constitutional order and democratic normalcy – are an integral part of the solution of the Cyprus problem.

A constant concern and chief pursuit of our foreign policy is the ending of the ongoing Turkish occupation, which assails not only the rights of the Greek Cypriot community, but also those of the Turkish Cypriot community. Our goal is the achievement of a just, viable, comprehensive and agreed solution of the Cyprus problem, based on the relevant UN resolutions and the implementation of the community acquis throughout the territory of Cyprus.

Today, we bow to the memory of our brothers who fell in Cyprus in 1974. We express our respect for and patriotic gratitude to all the defenders, Cypriots and Greeks, of the Republic of Cyprus.

Greece is and will remain at Cyprus’ side, assisting and supporting Cypriot Hellenism and the whole of the Cypriot people.

Source: Ministry of Foreign Affairs

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