The member of parliament of Famagusta from Republican Turkish Party (CTP) Asım Akansoy, made assessments for our paper on his studies on Cyprus problem, the recent relation between CTP and AKEL and candidacy of Niyazi Kızılyürek to the European Parliament .
Voice Of The Island-2019
Claiming that “If Turkish Cypriot right-wing elite politics think a little harder they would want Niyazi Kızılyürek to win’’, Akansoy added that with the capacity, vision Niyazi Kızılyürek has and despite to the fact that he is not even a member of AKEL his nomination as a candidate by AKEL, shook the status quo of both sides in a quite serious level.
Question: Could you mention about your studies you are realizing under Cyprus Working Group?
Asım Akansoy: Cyprus Working Group comprises of 5 parliament members. The members who were appointed from the members of the parliament upon request from the Prime Minister, are assigned to work and make practices for multi-directional initiatives regarding resolution of Cyprus problem, and to prepare ground for both building policies for our party and progress of process in a productive and constructive path. In this context, I think this establishment is doing its duty. Because, to be honest, Cyprus Working Group was not established to show off. It was not established either to go ahead of our party or compete against our President. On the contrary, it was established to make consultations by multi-directional coordination. It has done this job to the best level.
“We did frame breaking moves up to this day”
Asım Akansoy: We did a lot of frame breaking moves up to this day. It is a historic step to go to the South to convey our opinions on Cyprus problem. Similarly, to visit Anastasiadis and telling opinions of Turkish Cypriots and ideas of CTP and also telling the mistakes he was done directly to his face is a move demands courage, a strong will and dedication. These events have never happened in our history. There are colleagues who are doing constant initiatives before foreign diplomats both from the European Parliament and AKPA. Especially Armağan Candan and Fikri Toros. So our efforts are and will be continuing. We are holding meetings by approval of our party. In my opinion, we are taking very effective steps. We reached to non-governmental organizations, political parties and the press active in South side. We are considering on taking different steps at the future.
Question: How do you evaluate the current relation between CTP and AKEL?
Asım Akansoy: In historical respect the two parties has been represented different policies depending on different periods. This is a fact. It is true that we do not hesitate to be in cooperation if necessary, as being two great left-wing parties considering the fact that solidarity foundation of internationalist left-wing. This is not particular only to South Cyprus but to the left-wing movements all around the world. As CTP, we are in solidarity with left-wing movements from the four corners of the world. CTP is a member of socialist, internationalist movement. Accordingly, we are constantly in touch with all member organizations to socialist internationalist structure. Basically, CTP is looking from this perspective. We aim to be in touch and to share our opinions and opinions of CTP and Turkish Cypriots too, with parties from South side of Cyprus. We never take a step back in this matter. Because, how can you imagine to tend towards to a federal culture without being in touch, establishing dialogue or putting forward differences? This is not possible.
“CTP is never an instrument of a power group”
Asım Akansoy: Also I would like to express this: CTP has been never an instrument in trail of a political party or a power group. As Naci Talat is always reminded us, CTP produces its own unique policy and but never gets afraid to establish dialogue. There have been periods we became face to face with AKEL. I can show 2004 Plebiscite period of 2004 as an example. CTP showed great reaction to their ‘NO’ votes. Following to this Papadapulos support from AKEL caused reaction from CTP similarly. Imagine that we lost 3 and a half year in Dear Talat’s period. Due to wrong choice of AKEL and then support from AKEL to such a nationalist and rightist person we were lost 3 and a half year of 5-year period of office. After that, we could only realize 1 and a half year of negotiations only. However, we couldn’t complete the negotiation process. Accordingly that’s normal for AKEL and CTP relation has not progressed on a stable base. We can claim this depending on cyclical developments and political approaches of parties in each period.
‘‘During the Kiprianu period AKEL took a heed of Turkish Cypriots’’
Asım Akansoy: Especially in the period in which Kiprianu was the Secretary General of AKEL, I saw and red AKEL took a heed of Turkish Cypriots. While establishing their own statements AKEL has begun to watch over the sensitivities of Turkish Cypriots. They paid attention and esteemed this point. Kiprianu stated that ‘’since we want a federal resolution then we have to pay attention to the statements of Turkish Cypriot democratic and resolution authorities and Turkish Cypriot community’’. They also went to Ankara. They had a meeting with Çavuşoğlu. We can’t turn a blind eye to these developments. Today we can easily claim that relation between CTP and AKEL is more comfortable and transparent. I really would like to give credit to Andros Kiprianu in particular. Apart from this, I always emphasized that both parties must watch over other community while they are executing their policies and making a move. If this happens that means we have are progressing. We also should mention about Averof Neofito is making a policy that worthy of note in recent times. We are holding meetings with him also and we have to give his due. I think his role cannot be non-negligible regarding decisions which were taken on February 26. In fact, we can see that this is an important ground concerning the track to reach to a federal resolution. This is the first time two great parties of Greek Cypriots are working for a federal resolution.
Question: What would you like to say about candidacy of Niyazi Kızılyürek for AP?
Asım Akansoy: Niyazi Kızılyürek is not an AKEL member. Niyazi Kızılyürek is probably one of the people who criticizes AKEL utmost during his academic career. So, here we are witnessing such an historical irony. However, he assumed a historic task. It was not easy to assume such a responsibility by both Niyazi and AKEL. I agree with his opinion on the following point: Parliamentary elections of European Union base on citizen. Accordingly, it is not based to the community or state. There are problems due to anomaly in Cyprus and that is known. Therefore in the parliamentary elections European citizens from both Northern and Southern parts of Cyprus will vote. They have been already voting. If Niyazi Kızılyürek would not been a candidate, they would have been voted as they have up to this day. However, nomination of Niyazi Kızılyürek as a candidate to AKEL created a shock for the both sides of status quo depending on his capacity, vision and candidacy while he is not a member of AKEL, and there is a confusion occurred.
‘‘If Turkish Cypriot’ elites of right-wing politics think a little harder, they wish Niyazi to won’’
Asım Akansoy: Otherwise, status quo has not been disturbed before from candidates from Northern part of the island. But now, they disturb. Because there is a potential power to ruin status quo and they can see it. So, I really want Niyazi being successful in entering to European Parliament. In this way he can support two separate seats right of Turkish Cypriots and announcement of Turkish as one of the official languages in the island. He voices how Turkish Cypriot youth is under embargo in regards to education. He supports the right of Turkish Cypriots for being in more relations with the European Union. He can support the Island of Cyprus is part of the European Union as a whole. He can tell why the federation is vital and the Europeans should open their eyes.
This is why I want him to succeed. Niyazi Kızılyürek has the capacity to achieve all these. If Turkish Cypriot’ elites of right-wing politics thinks straight they would have wished Niyazi to won. They would have wished him go forward and support the rights of Turkish Cypriots there. I would like to say this; Niyazi’s candidacy and probable winning do not harm 2 separate seats right sourcing from Annan Plan of Turkish Cypriot community. Niyazi comprehends this very well. I would like to express this by taking the opportunity.
Question: What is your call to Turkish Cypriot community on Cyprus problem?
Asım Akansoy: We have to bear in mind the matter of resolution. We should know the sole way of integration of Turkish Cypriots to the world is federation. Turkey can suggest confederation as an alternative to the federation or any party can suggest that and I understand this. However, as a community suffering from conditions of lack of solution with the rest of our family and socio-economic problems along with, instability and migration phenomenon, we have to comprehend and fight for our own problem
“The greatest social loafing is to claim ‘’It’s Greek Cypriots, not us who do not want peace”
Asım Akansoy: The greatest social loafing is to say ‘’It’s Greek Cypriots not us who do not want peace’’. There is no such thing. Of course they have their own expectations and sensitivities. Everyone has their own reasons. We do not have to look at federation and resolution matters from perspective they wants us to do. We try hard to create the peace culture. Through recent periods, there are significant initiatives from Non-governmental organizations. We need boldly underline this issue. In even opinion research trust in non-governmental organizations is at a great level. I take this positively. An organized community is a community to demand attendance and democracy. As there are many steps to take and more progress to advance, we need to take these steps with pace by dedication and courage and by sharing this soul and to put forward a collective effort.