U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has voiced deep concern about Turkey’s reopening part of a beachfront resort abandoned since Ankara invaded the island in 1974, calling it provocative and seeking its reversal.
This is what the State Department said late on Friday, clarifying that Pompeo made the comments in a call with Cypriot Foreign Minister Nikos Christodoulides.
“The Secretary expressed deep concern and noted such a move was provocative and inconsistent with UN Security Council Resolutions 550 and 789 and not conducive to a return to settlement talks,” State Department spokeswoman Morgan Ortagus said in a statement.
“The Secretary urges a reversal of the re-opening,” she added. “The United States continues to support a comprehensive settlement to reunify the island as a bizonal, bicommunal federation, which would benefit all Cypriots and the entire region.”
An affluent neighborhood of high rise hotels, residences and shops, Varosha’s 39,000 Greek Cypriot residents fled in the second wave of an invasion mounted by Turkey in 1974.
It was sealed off by the Turkish military, and effectively left to rot.