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AHI Submits Letter to the New York Times; Columnist: EU’s Leverage Over Cyprus is Ephemeral
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE CONTACT: Georgea Polizos
February 19, 2013—No. 9 (202) 785-8430

AHI Submits Letter to the New York Times; Columnist: EU’s Leverage Over Cyprus is Ephemeral

WASHINGTON, DC — The American Hellenic Institute (AHI) released a letter to the editor it submitted to the New York Times in response to a Feb. 4, 2013 column titled “European Union’s Leverage Over Cyprus is Ephemeral” by Paul Taylor.

The columnist suggests the European Union utilize the Republic of Cyprus’s current economic condition as leverage for a solution to the republic’s 38-year division. In his letter, AHI President Nick Larigakis states this notion is unacceptable and identifies flawed points made by Taylor.  Among them, Taylor regrets the failure of the Annan Plan, placing blame on the Greek Cypriots.  Larigakis corrects the record on the Annan Plan, citing the inclusion of last-minute demands in the Plan by Turkey. Taylor also laments the absence of the United States in the Cyprus peace process.  Larigakis rebuts Taylor, stating what the United States’ role should be to exert its influence on Turkey to play a supportive and not detrimental role in the peace process.

Larigakis concludes, “Clearly, Turkey is the obstacle to peace and its own progress toward EU accession.”

To read the New York Times article, please click here. President Larigakis’ letter to the editor is found below.

The American Hellenic Institute is a non-profit Greek American think-tank and public policy center that works to strengthen relations between the United States and Greece and Cyprus, and within the Greek American community.

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For additional information, please contact Georgea Polizos at (202) 785-8430 or at pr@ahiworld.org. For general information about the activities of AHI, please see our Web site at http://www.ahiworld.org.

 

February 8, 2013
Letters to the Editor
The New York Times
620 Eighth Avenue
New York, NY  10018

Dear Editor:

It is unacceptable for Paul Taylor to suggest the European Union utilize the Republic of Cyprus’s current economic condition as leverage for a solution to the republic’s division caused by Turkey’s invasion and subsequent 38-year occupation in gross violation of international and U.S. laws (“European Union’s Leverage Over Cyprus is Ephemeral,” Feb. 4). 

Taylor’s column fails on many levels.  Taylor bemoans the failure of the fundamentally flawed Annan Plan, which incorporated unacceptable last-minute demands submitted by Turkey.  Cypriots rejected the plan; not a solution.  Taylor also laments the United States’ absence in the peace process.  The United States should exert its influence on Turkey, encouraging it to play a supportive role in the process and not a detrimental one.  Turkey must give Turkish Cypriots freedom to negotiate a solution within the established UN framework.  Instead, Ankara choses to advance policies that further solidify the island’s division, keeping its 43,000 troops on the island, in addition to illegal Turkish settlers, and wanting the right to intervene in Cyprus.  These harmful policies are not in concert with the international community. 

Clearly, Turkey is the obstacle to peace and its own progress toward EU accession.

Sincerely,
Nick Larigakis
President
American Hellenic Institute
1220 16th Street, NW
Washington, DC  20036
nlarigakis@ahiworld.org
202-785-8430