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TRNC applied to British Civil Aviation for direct flights

Source: TRNC Ministry of Foreign Affairs  
26 November 2006

President Mehmet Ali Talat pointing out that the Turkish Cypriots were struggling at many fronts to end the isolations, said: "As the start of a big struggle, the TRNC made an application to the British Civil Aviation for the direct flights on Thursday (23 November)".

Cyprus Turkish Airlines’ (CTA) Gaziantep Office was opened with a ceremony attended by President Mehmet Ali Talat, Minister of Economy and Tourism Enver Öztürk, Minister of Public Works and Transportation Salih Usar and Turkish State Minister Kürþad Tüzmen.

Speaking during the ceremony, President Talat stated that the opening of the CTA’s Gaziantep Ofiice was a very well reasoned project which would help the TRNC to benefit from Gaziantep’s growing potential.

Talat reminding that the Turkish Cypriot people have been facing great difficulties in opening to the world since 1963, said:

"As recently acknowledged by the whole world, isolations are very unjust and unacceptable. We are in a period in which the whole world and the world leaders are bothered, the UN Secretary General at plenty of times underlined that the Turkish Cypriots’ economic development was necessary and called upon the world to lift the isolations imposed upon them, but the world has not actually taken any action for the lifting of the isolations."

Referring to the CTA’s Ercan-Gaziantep-London flights, the President said that although this was a good destination, the reason for this was the fact that the CTA should for certain land in Turkey before flying to anywhere else.

Continuing President Talat said:

"Turkish Cypriots are struggling at many fronts for the lifting of the isolations, because the isolations are continuing in many fields. The population of the Turkish Cypriots living in the UK is equal to or even perhaps bigger then their population in Cyprus. In addition, Cyprus as the former colony of the UK is attracted by British tourists and in fact they visit, spend their holiday and even buy houses and reside here. Within the framework of this fact, the first destination for the Turkish Cypriots to carry out direct flights is of course London, the UK. However, because of the aforementioned reasons our flights to the UK should be via Turkey. Therefore, as the beginning of a serious and big struggle we have made our application to the British Civil Aviation for the start of direct flights on Thursday. We believe that the direct flights are essential for the Turkish Cypriots to be able to adopt the conditions of international competition and for providing direct transportation to North Cyprus as envisaged by the EU. Within this context we have taken the first important step and applied to British Civil Aviation. We hope that the UK would take a positive stance on this issue and allow the direct flights to the CTA. This is our expectation.

Therefore, we would be able to carry out direct flights to the UK, which is the second important destination after Turkey. With this application we have started a process in which the Turkish Cypriots by using all the legal and political means would struggle to the bitter end for starting the direct flights."

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