Tensions between Turkey, Turkish Cypriots escalate

Tensions between Turkey, Turkish Cypriots escalate

Summary: The Turkish government and the Turkish Cypriot president have a row in advance of the Oct. 11 presidential election in the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus as tensions have been rising in the eastern Mediterranean; the president has not always been in line with Ankara.


You would expect Turks of different backgrounds and viewpoints to close ranks while tensions still run high between Turkey, Greece and France over the oil and gas riches of the eastern Mediterranean. Not so for the government of Turkey and President Mustafa Akinci of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus.

In an interview with the news outlet Euronews on Sept. 8, Akinci argued that “outsiders” (hinting at the Turkish government) are intervening in the Turkish Cypriot presidential elections that will be held Oct. 11. Akinci said, “When the military insurgency happened on July 15 [2016], we supported the civilian administration in Turkey; we did so out of respect for the democracy, civil administration [and] the people of Turkey and their will. Now, we expect the same respect for the Turkish Cypriot democracy and the decision of our people. We expect nobody to make the mistake of taking sides during the election. I am saying that because there is evidence.”

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