PRESIDENT TALAT SAYS PROPERTY ISSUE IS NOT A DISPUTE BETWEEN INDIVIDUALS

President Mehmet Ali Talat has said that the Orams Case and the consequent judgment of ECJ was the continuation of the Greek Cypriot Side’s efforts to perceive and portray the property issue as a dispute between individuals.

In an address to the nation, the President said that the Orams Case had gone through a long legal process to which neither the Presidency nor the TRNC’s other official authorities had become directed involved.

He however said that they had closely followed developments in the case between the individuals concerned, providing all kinds of support.

Stating that it would not be correct to express any position or view on the matter before carefully assessing and evaluating the ECJ’s judgment, the President stressed that the ECJ’s failure to acknowledge the fact that the case was not the result of a violation of law by the Orams Couple but the result of the property dispute and the consequent existence of two separate property regimes on the island, was unacceptable.

“Above everything else, it must be known that the ECJ’s judgment is not the end and that the British High Court of Appeal will have the final say on the matter. It will be the British Court which will decide whether or not the Greek Cypriot Court’s ruling will be applicable in the UK” he said.

Talat also reminded that a case filed by the Orams Couple at the European Court of Human Rights against the Greek Cypriot court on claims that they did not receive a fair trial was still continuing.

He said in the event of the Orams Couple winning the case, the fact that the trial in the Greek Cypriot Court was in violation of human rights will be proven.

“It must be known that we perceive the property dispute in Cyprus not as a dispute among individuals but as a result of the Cyprus Problem” he said, adding that it was not possible to solve the property dispute before reaching a comprehensive settlement of the Cyprus Problem.

“Settling the property dispute is not only about the property rights of former owners. It will be solved by taking into account the rights of current owners or users through a combination of the methods of compensation, restitution or exchange.

The President said that he had highlighted these realities in all the international contacts he has held.

He said he had explained to foreign dignitaries that the property dispute in Cyprus cannot be solved through cases similar to the Orams case and that any attempt to do so will only serve to strain relations between the two peoples on the island.

“We underlined that such attempts will have a damaging effect on relations between the two peoples as well efforts to reach a comprehensive settlement to the Cyprus Problem” the President added.

The President also reassured the Turkish Cypriot people that whatever the outcome of the British High Court of Appeal will be, the TRNC Presidency and all its state organs will continue to safeguard and apply existing laws.

He also said all necessary responses to Greek Cypriot attempts to weaken the Turkish Cypriot Side’s hand at the negotiating table will be dealt with through solutions formulated in accordance with international law.

Pointing out that the recent developments has once again shown that the Greek Cypriot Side is using its EU membership against the Turkish Cypriot people, President Talat said these developments have at the same time, shown that the EU is not playing a positive and constructive role in solving the Cyprus Problem.

“These developments have also reaffirmed the view expressed in the UN Secretary general’s report dated 27th of May 2005, that the rise in individual court cases poses a serious threat to relations between the two peoples as well as the negotiations process” he added.

Talat reminded that the report had also stated that the property dispute will be solved through a comprehensive settlement to the Cyprus Problem.

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