Turkey warned on Sunday of a crisis with the European Union (EU) if settlement regarding dispute with Greek Cyprus was not solved prior to the scheduled Cyprus EU presidency in 2012.
“Turkey will freeze relations with the European Union if Greek Cyprus is given the EU presidency in 2012,” Deputy Prime Minister Besir Atalay was quoted as saying to local media outlets.
“If the peace negotiations there (Greek Cyprus) are not conclusive, and the EU gives its rotating presidency to Greek Cyprus, the real crisis will be between Turkey and the EU,” Atalay said.
“We will freeze our relations with the EU. We have made this announcement, as a government we have made this decision. Our relations with the EU will come to a sudden halt,” Atalay added.
Cyprus has been divided since a Turkish intervention in 1974 triggered by a brief Greek-inspired coup.
UN-sponsored peace talks between Turkish Cypriots and Greek Cypriots have stumbled since they were re-launched in 2008.