Ersin Tatar, until now the prime minister of Northern Cyprus and a pro-Turkish politician to the bone, supported by Ankara and a supporter of the separation of Cyprus into two independent states, won just under 52% of the vote, defeating the incumbent president. , Mustafa Akinci, who has repeatedly expressed his desire to reunite with the southern region of the island.
Turkish President Recep Erdogan was the first to jump in with congratulatory messages. The Cypriot government in Nicosia has so far remained silent, with only opposition parties expressing concern about the election result.
“I congratulate Ersin Tatar, who was elected president. Turkey will continue its efforts to protect the rights of Turkish Cypriots, “Erdogan said in a Twitter message.
Ersin Tatar did not forget Erdogan, who supported him from the beginning of the election campaign in his speech, thanking him. “We deserve sovereignty – we are the voice of the Tutsi Cypriots. We are fighting to exist as the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus, and our southern neighbors and the entire international community should respect our fight for freedom … because we deserve it, “he said in front of his supporters after hearing the results. of BBC.
The incumbent president and Tatar’s opponent, Mustaka Akinci, a moderate backed by Turkish Cypriots who oppose Ankara’s growing interference in the country’s internal affairs, had vowed to do everything in his power to second mandate, the northern territory to reunite with the territory controlled by the government of Nicosia in the chariot of a federal system. Akinci, 72, wished the citizens success in his speech in which he acknowledged his defeat.
“We went through an abnormal election campaign,” Akinci said, referring to Ankara’s pressure. “I congratulate Tatar and those who helped him achieve this. I hope that these interventions do not happen again. This result marks the end of my 45-year career. I wish good luck to our people “, he added, quoted by The Guardian.
Cyprus has been divided since 1974, when Turkey invaded the north of the island in response to a Greek-backed military coup. The island has become de facto separate, with the northern third being ruled by a Turkish Cypriot government and the southern two-thirds by the internationally recognized Greek Cypriot government.
The Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus, the self-proclaimed entity with a population of about 300,000 people – is recognized as an independent state by Turkey alone, with the rest of the country considering it part of Cyprus. For Cypriots of Turkish origin who want an end to a long period of international isolation, Tatar’s victory is a real blow, as embracing Akinci’s proposal for a federal Cypriot state is seen as the only feasible solution. Akinci, who, like the president of Cyprus, Nicos Anastasiades, was born in Limassol, is part of a declining number of Cypriots who remember a time when peaceful coexistence on the Mediterranean island was a reality.