I refer to the letter Turkey's action in Cyprus against int'l law by Michael Anastasiadis. This letter asserting that the Turkish intervention in Cyprus is illegal is yet another half-truth propagated by Greek Cypriots seeking to mislead the world.

It might be surprising for your readers to learn that the only courts that have ruled the Turkish action illegal are those of the Greek Cypriots. Furthermore, the Greek Cypriots regularly refer to judgments of the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) to bolster their claim but the ECHR is not empowered to make judgments on the legality of such matters and indeed has not made any such a judgment. The only court that is empowered to judge such matters is the International Court and it is interesting to note that the question has never been tested in this court.

The only legal argument I have heard stating that Turkey's intervention in Cyprus was illegal is from Greek academic lawyers who claim that it contravenes the UN Charter which requires that all bilateral or multilateral treaties be subordinate to rulings of the UN Security Council. This, of course, is debatable as it would mean that the US would have to seek UN Security Council approval prior to intervening in a Chinese invasion of Taiwan or a North Korean invasion of South Korea. Clearly, the US would not do this and the Western democratic powers would not expect it to do so.

The legal basis for Turkey's 1974 intervention is in accordance with the Treaty of Guarantee (1960) that gave each of the guarantor powers (Greece, England and Turkey) the right to intervene to protect the Constitution of Cyprus and to ensure that Cyprus did not become united with another country. The Greek and Greek Cypriot actions of the 1960s and 1974 were, unambiguously, undermining the constitution and seeking to unite Cyprus with Greece.

These actions also resulted in the murder of thousands of Turk (and Greek) Cypriots, turning them into refugees. Turkey was, therefore, well within its legal rights to intervene to stop this from happening and to maintain its presence in Cyprus until the Greek Cypriots comply with the bi-communal provisions of the constitution which they have refused to do since December 1963.

Read more from this author :
Read more like this :
Most Read
Most Commented
Most Recent