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Cyprus Plan to be Announced Next Week

InternationalForeign Minister Abdullah Gul said that Turkey and Turkish Cyprus were preparing a plan to solve the Cyprus issue, which would be announced next week. Gul said that their target was to settle the issue before May 1, 2004. During his visit to Japan, Gul told Anatolian News Agency that the keyword regarding the Cyprus issue was “compromise.”

According to Gul, parties should take steps with an understanding of mutual compromise.

On whether the preparations were a kind of alternative to the Annan Plan, Gul said, “The sole thing I will say on this is that Ankara has been working on the issue for a long time. Cyprus is doing the same. All these will be combined and we will show that the Turkish side is sincerely spending effort for solution.”

Gul stressed that compromise could not be given unilaterally, the other party should also do the same. Gul said that even though their aim was to solve the issue prior to May 1, 2004, it was not something that Turkey or the Turkish side could accomplish by themselves.

On what will happen if no solution is reached until May 1, 2004, Gul said, “If there is no solution, then there is no solution. Once Turkey does everything she can no one will have the right to complain about her.” Gul said that even if Greek Cyprus became an EU member before a solution was attained this would not mean that Turkey would accept anything imposed.

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