The position of the Security Council on Varosha is very clear and has not changed, said Ambassador Marc Pecsteen de Buytswerve, the Permanent Representative of Belgium presiding over the UN body this month.
The Security Council met on Wednesday evening (local time) for a closed session on Libya. Buytswerve was asked after the meeting if the Security Council also discussed the issue of the fenced-off part of Famagusta in light of a conference organised there on February 15, by the Turkish Bar Association, and what the body’s reaction was.
The President of the Security Council said that “actually the Council has not discussed this question today, but we were made aware of the developments through a letter, and what I can say on this issue, is that the position of the Council is very clear. It made a statement on this in October last year and its position has not changed.”
Cyprus has been divided since 1974, when Turkey invaded and occupied its northern third. Repeated rounds of UN-led peace talks have so far failed to yield results. The latest round of negotiations, in July 2017 at the Swiss resort of Crans-Montana ended inconclusively.
The Turkish Bar Association organized on February 15 a round table meeting in Varosha, for the first time since 1974, which was attended by Turkish Vice President Fuat Oktay and Turkish Justice Minister Abdulhamit Gül. Oktay stated that Varosha belongs to the illegal Turkish Cypriot regime and took part in a tour of the fenced off part of Famagusta.
Varosha, the fenced off section of the Turkish occupied town of Famagusta, is often described as a ‘ghost town’.
UN Security Council resolution 550 (1984) considers any attempts to settle any part of Varosha by people other than its inhabitants as inadmissible and calls for the transfer of this area to the administration of the UN. UN Security Council resolution 789 (1992) also urges that with a view to the implementation of resolution 550 (1984), the area at present under the control of the United Nations Peace-keeping Force in Cyprus should be extended to include Varosha.
(Cyprus News Agency)