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AHI Letter to President Clinton
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE CONTACT: JONATHAN CLARKE
March 18, 1999 MNo. 11/99 (202) 785-8430

AHI Letter to President Clinton

• PRESENTS PLANS OF ACTION TO RESOLVE CYPRUS & AEGEAN PROBLEMS BASED ON THE RULE OF LAW;

• CHARGES COVER-UP BY STATE DEPARTMENT OFFICIALS OF STATE'S ACCESORY ROLE IN THE INVASION OF CYPRUS;

• CHARGES STATE DEPARTMENT OFFICIALS HAVE MISLEAD PRESIDENT CLINTON ON THE LAW REGARDING ISLETS OF IMIA IN THE AEGEAN;

• CHARGES PRO TURKISH POLICY DRIVEN BY HANDFUL OF CAREER STATE DEPARTMENT OFFICIALS TO THE DETRIMENT OF U.S. INTERESTS;

• CITES CLINTON MARCH 10, 1999 GUATEMALA STATEMENT AS APPLICABLE TO TURKEY; AND

• CALLS FOR CLINTON TO UNEQUIVOCALLY REJECT TURKISH THREATS AND DEFAMATORY CAMPAIGN AGAINST GREECE AS UNACCEPTABLE.

AHI general counsel Eugene T. Rossides today sent a letter to President Clinton containing an overall plan of action for resolution of the Cyprus and Aegean problems in a manner consistent with American values and the rule of law. The letter lists four measures for Clinton to consider as integral parts of an overall plan:

1 An unequivocal declaration that the Cyprus problem is one of illegal invasion and continued occupation;

2 An unequivocal declaration that the U.S. will apply international law in the Aegean with regard to the territorial disposition between Greece and Turkey, specifically recognizing the provisions of the 1923 Treaty of Lausanne and successor treaties and agreements as awarding the Dodecanese islands and islets, including Imia, to Greece. The U.S. should further state that it will treat any challenge to these provisions as unacceptable unless made through the International Court of Justice at The Hague.

3 An unequivocal declaration that in relations with Turkey the U.S. will give the highest priority to the rule of law and respect for human rights. This means that the U.S. will not tolerate the use of U.S. arms to oppress the Turkish people, including the Kurds.

4 The application to Turkey of the statement and policy you enunciated in Guatemala on March 10, 1999.

The action plan for Cyprus follows acceptance of the measures listed above and calls on Clinton to give specific policy instructions to the Secretary of State and Secretary of Defense to support the immediate demilitarization of Cyprus, coupled with a NATO peacekeeping force under U.N. auspices to augment or supplant the present UN peacekeeping force on Cyprus to ensure the security of both communities. Demilitarization is a provision in H.Con.Res. 81 and S.Con.Res. 41, which passed overwhelmingly in the House and Senate in July 1997. Demilitarization is the major step which could lead to a comprehensive settlement.

The action plan for the Aegean simply states what the law is; namely, that under international law, the Imia islets are sovereign Greek territory and so recognized by the international community in general.

When the Imia crisis erupted in January 1996 the career officials' pro-Turkish bias was evident when they advised Clinton to duck the issue by referring the parties to the International Court of Justice at The Hague. The letter states he was misled as to the law and thereby encouraged further Turkish belligerence and threats against Greece regarding the Aegean.

The letter urges President Clinton to make an unequivocal declaration that the U.S. specifically recognizes the provisions of the 1923 Treaty of Lausanne and successor treaties and agreements as awarding the Dodecanese islands and islets, including Imia, to Greece. And that the U.S. should further state that if Turkey disagrees, it should go to the International Court of Justice for a binding ruling.

The letter calls on Clinton to embrace the positive opportunities of drawing closer to our proven friends in the region, Greece and Cyprus, which are stable democracies with strong pro-U.S. inclinations. They share our values and interests. The U.S. should refocus its efforts in the region to maximize the benefits to U.S. interests of Greece's leadership potential in Southeast Europe where, uniquely among regional states, Greece is a member of both NATO and the European Union.

A copy of the letter with Exhibits 4-6 is attached. Exhibit 1, The 1999 Greek American Policy Statements, Exhibit 2, AHI's March 4, 1999 Testimony before the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Foreign Operations, Export Financing and Related Programs, and Exhibit 3, the AHI Statement on the Ocalan Affair, were previously sent to you.