Parliament Speaker Numan Kurtulmuş confronted a Greek Cypriot administration official accusing Türkiye of “invasion” of the island of Cyprus. Kurtulmuş was in Dublin to attend the European Conference of Presidents of Parliament on Thursday.
Speaking before Kurtulmuş at the event, Annita Demetriou, a representative of the Greek Cypriot administration on the divided island of Cyprus, accused Türkiye of “invading” the island when Türkiye invoked its guarantor powers and hurled a similar accusation to Türkiye’s main ally Azerbaijan over the “invasion” of Karabakh, internationally recognized as part of Azerbaijan.
Responding to the allegations in his speech, Kurtulmuş said there was “indeed an invasion” in Cyprus. Still, the Greek Cypriot side removed the legitimate Republic of Cyprus established in 1960. “Türkiye, as a guarantor state, would not sit idly by when pro-Enosis groups tried to remove the republic and it did what it should have done,” he said.
Kurtulmuş also spoke against Demetriou’s accusation toward Azerbaijan. “We appreciate the sensitive stance of Azerbaijan to liberate its own territory from Armenia’s 33-year-old invasion of Karabakh and fully support it. Azerbaijan had no other option but to liberate its territories when all international efforts against (Armenia’s) invasion failed and it saved Karabakh with a 44-day war. Karabakh will forever be Azerbaijani territory. It is not an invasion. It is an act of liberation for Azerbaijan, saving its own territory,” he said.
He highlighted that some circles tried to disrupt the peace Azerbaijan, Türkiye, Russia, Iran, Armenia and Georgia sought to establish in the Caucasus region. “Peace between Azerbaijan and Armenia over Karabakh will favor those two countries and others in the region,” he said. He also mentioned that the Zangezur corridor, set to connect Azerbaijan’s western regions to the Nakhchivan exclave, would favor the people of the region.