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Symbolic  Presence

Özcan ÖZCANHAN

The United Nations Peace Force in Cyprus (UNFICYP), a multinational  army of peacekeepers, has been active on the island since early March 1964. It has been celebrating its 50th anniversary with special messages and parades. Its deployment and mandate have been extended systematically by the UN Security Council, with six monthly periods. First Commander of the force was General Gyanni. He has been succeeded by scores of Generals from Canada, Britain, Ireland and  even Argentina. Assigned with the task of keeping warring parties in Cyprus apart and maintainin peace , has been of no use. Turkish Cypriot villages, settlements were attacked in 1964, 1967,  and following years...Turks were driven away from their homes, they lost their properties and belongings ,as well as their loved ones. They have been buried in mass graves... All, before the very eyes of UNFICYP. There  had been  also 3 abortive attempts on the life of President Makarios by EOKA “B” members. He narrowly escaped. But , in 1974 he was ousted by the Greek colonels’ junta, backed by EOKA “B” UNFICYP  watched the instalment of  hit-man Nikos Samson as President of the “Hellenic Republic of Cyprus”. Did not move a finger. Subsequent military intervention by guarantor power Turkey and the division of the island did not compel UNFICYP  to move, to restore constitutional order and to stop bloodshed. UNFICYP failed dismally in preserving peace and order. It was effective ,only, in certain humanitarian missions. Many contributors and donators to the upkeep of the force withdrew. Scandinavian, Irısh, Australian, Finnish etc. troops and civilian police went back home. Some countries continued to provide logistic and military supplies. Fifty years went by. Several UN secretary generals, UN Special Cyprus Representatives, coordinators, commanders  took their turn, full of hopes to succeed in their mission. Fifty years on, the antagonists, armed forces and politicians from both sides have remained in their trenches. They are still holding on to their positions... and the UNFICYP is still watching, growing smaller and smaller in numbers  every extension time. Let the UN Secretary General thank and praise the unending, futile works-whatever they are now-of UNFICYP, Members of which have been described at times as tourists by the local Greek and Turkish Cypriots. Hoping that the current Cyprus negotiations will end in an agreement, I wish UNFICYP  a happy birhtday But, not WITH MANY HAPPY RETURNS. Let this one be the last one, is my wish. Let this year be a peaceful settlement year of the Cyprus problem and the withdrawal time of all foreign troops from the island. Müzakereler… Akıncı BM Genel Sekreteri ile görüşmüş... ne oldu, ne olacak ? hala daha Anastasiades ile fedral bir  çözümü mü tartışacak? Tartışıyorlarmış. Sonuç alınamaz. Çünkü, Rum tarafının tutumu belli. "Yerleşikler gidecek, Türk askeri gidecek, garanti anlaşması değişecek, Rumlar eski yerlerine dönecek, Maraş ile Ercan’ı tartışmam, konuşmam....hele KKTC diye bir devleti tanımam ve onunla asla federasyon kurmam" gibi ifadelerine karşılık, türk tarafı, onun istediklerinin hiçbirini kabule yayaşmaz. O halde neden , yıl sonuna anlaşma olabilir havası estiriliyor ? Bu filmleri çok gördük.. ozcan

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