U.N. Security Council wants status of Varosha in Cyprus restored

The United Nations Security Council on Friday voiced deep concern regarding the announcement in Ankara on Tuesday to open the coastline of Varosha, a part of the Cypriot city of Famagusta that has been uninhabited since 1974.

The Security Council called for the reversal of this course of action and for the avoidance of any unilateral actions that could raise tensions on the island.

It reaffirmed Varosha’s status as described in the U.N.’s previous resolutions and reiterated that no actions should be carried out in relation to Varosha that are not in accordance with those resolutions.

In Resolution 550 of 1984, the Security Council considered any efforts to populate Varosha with people other than its inhabitants were inadmissible and called for a transfer of the area to the administration of the United Nations.

In Friday's statement, the Security Council reaffirmed its commitment to an enduring, comprehensive and just settlement in accordance with the wishes of the Cypriot people, and based on a bicommunal, bi-zonal federation with political equality.

It also called on the Cypriot sides and the guarantor powers – Greece, Turkey, Britain – to engage in dialogue constructively and with a sense of urgency following the electoral process in the Turkish Cypriot community.

The Security Council re-established its support for U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres and his intention to convene a meeting as agreed between the Turkish Cypriot and Greek Cypriot leaders in their meeting with him in November 2019.

The council’s statement was released after it held closed-door consultations at the request of the Republic of Cyprus.

Cyprus was split along ethnic lines in 1974 when Turkey intervened militarily following a coup by Athens-backed Greek Cypriots.

(A version of this article was published by Kathimerini and reproduced by permission.)