If you give way, you will instantly have to meet some greater demand, as having been frightened into obedience in the first instance; while a firm refusal will make them clearly understand that they must treat you more as equals. Make your decision therefore at once, either to submit before you are harmed, or if we are to go to war, as I for one think we ought, to do so without caring whether the ostensible cause be great or small, resolved against making concessions or consenting to a precarious tenure of our possessions. For all claims from an equal, urged upon a neighbour as commands before any attempt at legal settlement, be they great or be they small, have only one meaning, and that is slavery.
[Speach of Pericles - Thucydides, History of the Peloponnesian War, Chapter V]

86% reject the Annan Plan

Increased distrust towards the negotiating team

A public opinion survey regarding the Annan plan for Cyprus conducted last week for an Athenian newspaper by the polling company Evresis Call Center. A preview of the survey was published today in the Cypriot daily Simerini on 11 December 2002.  The survey shows that 86% of the Greek Cypriot public opinion does not accept the Annan plan the way it stands, 88% support the prior approval of the National Council before President Clerides signs any settlement agreement on Cyprus, and 58% have very little or no faith in the Greek Cypriot negotiating team.  The telephone survey used a multistage, stratified and random method on a Cyprus-wide scale amongst men and women over 18 years old who live in urban and rural areas.

The survey questions and responses are as follows:

Do you accept the Annan plan as is?

No                                                                    86%
Yes                                                                   10%
Don't know/No answer                                          4%

Is a prior approval by the National Council necessary, or does the President have the right to sign a possible settlement agreement on Cyprus?

Prior National Council approval is necessary                    88%
The President has the right to sign                               7%
Don't know/No answer                                               5%

Is a popular referendum necessary prior to the signing of any settlement agreement, or does the President have the right to sign?

Prior popular referendum is necessary                       81%
No prior referendum is necessary                             18%
Don't know/No answer                                            1%

Do you trust the negotiating team?

Not at all                                                            18%
Very little                                                           40%
Very much                                                         23%
Absolutely                                                          19%

'British meddling leaves 5,000 refugees out in the cold'

By Jean Christou

Cyprus Mail: 3 December 2002

BRITAIN'S envoy for Cyprus Lord David Hannay made changes to the UN peace plan to safeguard British interests, preventing thousands of refugees from Famagusta returning to their abandoned homes, informed sources claimed yesterday.

The British peer also allegedly had a hand in watering down a section of the plan that provided for cross voting between the two communities, in order to appease the Turkish Cypriot side, the _Cyprus Mail_ has learned.

According to informed sources, Britain's special envoy on the Cyprus problem intervened in the UN plan to water down the cross voting provisions, which were "clearly intended to bring the two communities closer together", in that the future leaders would have to pursue votes from both sides.

"This is very serious because we are talking about the viability of the proposals and watering down such provisions immediately alienates the two sides and creates a distance between the political leaders," one source said.

"He has been interfering all along in an imperialist manner in all these processes of preparing the plan, primarily to protect British interests in Cyprus."

The source claimed Hannay had intervened to redraw a line on the map going into Famagusta in a clear attempt to secure British strategic interests. _Politis_ on Sunday showed how the new line ran south of a stretch of road from the British base of Ayios Nicolaos to the port of Famagusta. The road had initially been designated as the boundary line between the two sides.

Under the 1960 Treaty of Establishment, the British bases have full and unrestricted rights to use the road, which runs between the Turkish Cypriot quarter of Famagusta and the Ayios Yiannis area of the city.

However, under the UN plan, the boundary has been moved 800 metres south, placing the three-mile stretch of road firmly within the Turkish Cypriot controlled area. This would bar 5,000 to 6,000 Greek Cypriot refugees, whose abandoned homes lie between the road and the new boundary, from resettling under Greek Cypriot administration.

Had the line been moved 800 metres to the north, it would have placed the Turkish Cypriots in old Famagusta under Greek Cypriot control. However, leaving the road as a natural border between the Turkish Cypriot and Greek Cypriot areas would have solved any dilemma for both sides.

But sources said this would have brought the road under the joint control of the two sides and could have caused a headache for the British bases if any disputes eventually arose, potentially affecting their own unrestricted access to the port.

"If the two sides fell out at any time that is where it would focus," a source said. "By having that road a safe distance of 700-800 metres belonging to one or the other side it would remain free to the British because it only belongs to one side. You can always deal with just one side without having to go into any problem between them."

The source said that while it was impractical to have the road inside the proposed Greek area, the fact that it has been placed inside the proposed Turkish area, and not left alone as the natural border prevented thousands of Greek Cypriots from going home to uninhabited properties, since that part of Famagusta had not been settled by Turkish Cypriots since 1974.

When the plan came out two weeks ago, the UN and the government said the two maps included had been designed to return of the maximum number of refugees to their homes, and the maps zig-zag to that effect. But the line drawn from Ayios Nicolaos to Famagusta is a straight line and places the town's public buildings, the hospital, the central police station, the courts, the lands and surveys department, the public works department, the offices of most of the former diplomatic missions and a large part of Kato Varosha, under Turkish Cypriot administration.

"It's very short sighted because Britain's interest in Cyprus is to have good relations and to be an honest guarantor and not just to look out for its own ends," the source said. "Instead, it is playing its own game and driving a wedge between the two sides. This is what happened before. This is British imperialist policy at its worst."

A second informed source on the Greek Cypriot side said that Hannay's fingerprints "were all over the plan".

"We knew the British were working on the proposal for a long time but we don't know how much of it is Britain's work or the work of the US," the second source said.

"As far as the cross voting issue is concerned that was more than likely Hannay's work," he added, saying that leaving it in would have been a better solution because "then you have direct elections and democratic accountability".

"Now you don't have that and the purpose seems to have been to accommodate Denktash. Denktash doesn't want direct voting. He wants to be able to manipulate."

The sources said they believed Hannay's interference was partly to protect British interests and partly to obtain a solution in a hurry.

"They want the whole mess cleaned up, not so much by the EU summit on December 12 but before Iraq gets going, because they need Turkey to co-operate fully in Iraq and they don't want it diverted by other things. Iraq is the main element," the source said.

The UN was unable to comment on the allegations, as its envoy Alvaro de Soto was in Ankara. The UN has previously acknowledged British and US advice on the plan, but has said the proposal is solely the work of the UN. British officials in London were also unavailable for comment yesterday.

Government Spokesman Michalis Papapetrou told the _Cyprus Mail_ he had no idea about the allegations. He said Britain and the US had "definitely" been involved in the UN plan, "but there are no specifics of who had his hand in this or that,' he said.


Draft Letter of Protest


||How You Can Help||
||Home Page||Index||Introduction||Human Rights||United Nations||Turkish Viloations||