Turkey makes port pledge to Greek Cyprus

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Turkey makes port pledge to Greek Cyprus

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Turkey’s made Greek Cyprus an offer in a bid to break the deadlock over the divided island’s status and continuing trade embargoes.

Ankara says it is ready to open all its ports to Greek Cypriots if two Turkish Cypriot ports and an airport are opened to international trade in return.

Turkey’s Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu made the offer following a meeting of the Committee on Political Affairs of the Euro-Mediterranean Parliamentary Assembly in Istanbul.

Under the terms of the proposal, Turkey wants Girne, Magosa and also the Ercan airport to be open to Mediterreanean traffic and trade.

Cyprus was ethnically split in a Turkish invasion in 1974 triggered by a brief coup inspired by the military then ruling Greece.

Cyprus joined the EU as a divided island when Greek Cypriots rejected the UN reunification plan in twin referendums in 2004 even though the Turkish Cypriots in the north overwheminlgy supported it.

The two sides have since been trying to re-link the island as a federation.

Fresh negotiations due to resume next week after a two-month interruption for Turkish Cypriot elections which produced a nationalist victory.