INTERVIEW WITH CYPRIOT FOREIGN MINISTER YIORGOS LILLIKA
FROM SPIEGEL ONLINE
* Muhammedans often claim that their countries are being ‘invaded’ by western powers while deliberately ignoring the global jihad against the world that rages since 1400 years. The old chestnut that ‘no Islamic country has invaded a non Islamic country in 200 years’- is often repeated by the historically ignorant nutroots and moonbats among us who would sing ‘Kumbayah” even when the halal butchers cut their throats in front of a video camera. For starters, Indonesia immediately invaded East Timor the moment the Portugiese left. And just over 25 years ago the Turkish army invaded Cyprus, killed and raped and displaced more than 8000 people. There are currently 30-plus jihad wars in the world, from Chechnya to Kashmir, from Mindanao to Sulawesi and from Ethiopia to Nigeria. Israel is by no means the cause of the global jihad, but a scapegoat. If Israel fell today, the jihad would immediately continue against Spain, (‘Al Andaluz) Greece, France, Italy (Sicily) but not only there: The soldiers of Allah claim the world. The Koran teaches that they must ‘fight the unbelievers until all the world submits to Allah’…
Cypriot Foreign Minister Yiorgos Lillikas.
* Lillikas may not be all that savvy about the global jihad and the teachings of the Koran and the sunnah, but he understands that Turkey wants it all, and that would leave little for the Greek Cypriots.
Little progress has been made on solving the issue of a divided Cyprus since it was last addressed in December. SPIEGEL ONLINE spoke with the Cypriot foreign minister about what the Turkish crisis means for Cyprus, why the island is eager to see Turkey join the EU, and how accession is like an Anatolian bazaar.
SPIEGEL ONLINE: The road to Turkish membership in the European Union leads through Cyprus. Should Turkey not recognize Cyprus and open up trade with the country, it cannot become an EU member. But domestically, Turkey also has a lot of work left to do to implement the criteria for membership. Does the current government crisis in Turkey between the military-backed secularists and the Islamic government of Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan worsen Turkey’s chances of accession and lessen the chances of finding a solution to the Cyprus problem?
Yiorgos Lillikas: Both. I am afraid that every time we have a political crisis in Turkey, Cyprus pays the price, especially should the military return to power. As we have seen in the past, that would mean a more hardliner policy and a more aggressive policy toward Cyprus. Cyprus is still seen by the Turkish military as vital for the country’s security. This is a very old fashioned and outdated approach. If they don’t change, then the Cyprus problem cannot be solved and it won’t be possible for Turkey to become a member of the European Union.
SPIEGEL ONLINE: Last December at the EU summit, Turkey maintained its refusal to open up all its ports and airports to traffic from Cyprus and elected not to move towards normalizing relations between the two countries. Do you think the Turkish position might soften once the upcoming elections are over?
Lillikas: I certainly hope so. In the European Union, a lot of partners thought that because of approaching elections in Turkey, the government in Ankara was unable to implement its obligations toward the European Union. If that is the case, then it can also be true of the Cyprus problem.
SPIEGEL ONLINE: Given the role the military plays in Turkish political life, why should Turkey be a part of the European Union at all?
Lillikas: If Turkey doesn’t change its political culture by adopting European values, then of course it cannot become a member of the European Union. That should be clear for everybody. But we have to keep the incentives alive for Turkey. I am always opposed to those who say that Turkey should never become a member of the EU, because then, the Turkish government has no incentive to pursue reforms. But I am also opposed to those on the other extreme who say that they support Turkey unconditionally. The result is the same. If the Turkish government believes that it can become an EU member without fulfilling the criteria, then it would likewise have no incentive to reform.
SPIEGEL ONLINE: Is Turkey’s desire to join the European Union the only lever that Cyprus has in negotiations with Turkey over the potential reunification of the island?
Lillikas: Unfortunately yes. We are too small to have other levers. This is why I am dumbfounded when Turkish politicians say they would never accept the withdrawal of Turkish troops from Cyprus for security reasons. Come on! Maybe we are not very clever, us Cypriots, but we are not so stupid that we would attack Turkey.
Update: The strange politics of the EU
Army meddling ‘threatens Turkey’s EU chances’
The EU, like Condoleeza Rice,would apparently prefer Turkey as an Islamic state to Turkey as a secular state under military rule.
By Amberin Zaman and Damien McElroy in the Telegraph,with thanks to Jihad Watch
The European Union warned the Turkish military yesterday that its interference in the country’s politics could jeopardise its chances of joining the EU. “The EU is founded on the principles of liberty, democracy, respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms, the rule of law, and the supremacy of democratic civilian power over the military,” Olli Rehn, the EU enlargement commissioner, said in a statement.
“If a country wants to become a member of the Union, it needs to respect these principles.”
The comments came after Turkey’s prime minister, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, (a convicted Islamo-fascist who did jail time for his belief) asked parliament to call a general election in July, five months early, after the country’s highest court annulled a vote to choose a new president.
The army warned at the weekend that it would intervene if Abdullah Gul, the ruling AK party’s foreign minister, was made president.
Opposition leaders fear Mr Gul’s election would enable the government to pursue an “Islamic agenda” it has so far kept in the shadows….
Onur Oymen, the hawkish deputy chairman of the main opposition Republican People’s Party, said the secular basis of the Turkish state was the true guarantee of democracy.
“You can’t have democracy without secularism,” he said. “The notion of moderate Islam to check radical Islam is nonsense. This idea being promoted by certain countries should be abandoned.”