Index

ACTION CYPRUS

AN HEC PROJECT

 

 

Introduction

On 20 July and 14 August 1974 Turkey launched two successive brutal invasions of the Republic of Cyprus with the sole aim of ethnically cleansing its majority Greek Cypriot population and occupying their land in order to create a purely Turkish state. Over 200,000 innocent Greek Cypriot civilians were forced out of their homes and thousands were savagely beaten, tortured, mutilated and murdered including over a thousand women who were brutally raped. Cyprus Hellenic cultural heritage was systematically looted, pillaged and destroyed by the Turks who still illegally occupy over 37% of Cyprus territory.

Through this web site the Hellenic Electronic Center encourages you to take action to bring about the end of Turkeys crimes against humanity in Cyprus and restore the basic fundamental human rights of all Cypriots who are the victims of Turkeys aggression.

Help us by taking Action to put an end to the Turkish occupation of Cyprus

Washington Times insults Cypriots on Invasion anniversary

Assessment of Gordon Brown's performance on Cyprus

Stop Transport for London promoting travel to occupied Cyprus

BBC radio documentary reveals that Britain supplied arms and explosives to Turkish terrorists in Cyprus.

Turkish terrorists were armed by Britain

Turks concealing evidence on missing persons

British government insists on continuing to violate treaty obligations

Kissinger illegally abetted Turkish invasion

September 6, 2005 marks the 50th anniversary of the Turkish pogroms against the indigenous Greeks of Constantinople.

Find out how the Greeks of Constantinople were systematically eliminated

A Brief History

 

The illegal Turkish Invasion and Occupation of Cyprus

Over nine thousand years ago the first farmers came to Cyprus and built the earliest known settlements. From there they radiated to Crete and mainland Greece. Settlers followed them back to Cyprus from Greece during periods of migration during the Minoan, Mycenaean, Archaic, Classical and Hellenistic periods and Cypriots also went the other way which resulted in the creation and consolidation of a Hellenic cultural, linguistic and religious identity of the Cypriot people.

Cyprus Greek character and identity was unaffected by invasions by the Phoenicians, Egyptians, Persians, Romans and Francs. Since the bronze age Cyprus had its own Greek monarchs and mythical heroes. In the iron age Cyprus was an ally of Assyria and at the time of Artaxerxes II, Evagoras the king of all Cyprus and the conqueror of the Phoenicians and Asia-Minor was recognised as an equal by the Persian Great King. Cyprus came under Ptolemaic rule in Hellenistic times after which it became part of the Roman and then the Byzantine Greek empire. Later Frankish Crusaders and the Venetians introduced the feudal system to Cyprus, like most of western Europe, but individuals were eventually able to prosper and rise up the socio-political ladder or join the military and some were even able to marry into the foreign aristocracy.

Cyprus freedom and prosperity came to an end when the Ottoman Turks invaded and subjugated the people to brutal oppression. Under the Ottomans the Cypriot people were regarded simply as salves that had no right to participate in the government, carry out independent trade or build places of worship simply because they were Christians.

Since Christians were not allowed to have any share in power the Ottoman Turks could only maintain their rule through military might therefore they abducted young Christian children from their families in the "Paidomazwma" or “Child Tax” to use as slave soldiers. These children were brought up as Turks and brainwashed in Islamic religious schools into becoming fanatical Muslim fighters or "Janissaries" by being forced to read nothing but the Koran every day and by being made to believe that the Sultan was their father. Today this crime is considered to be an act of genocide.

The Ottoman period witnessed horrendous crimes against humanity including huge massacres of Cypriot civilians such as the massacre of the population of Famagousta and the public hanging of Archbishop Kyprianos, three Bishops and other priests and Greek Cypriot dignitaries in Nicosia.

The fact that Christians were treated as second class citizens with no right to hold office in the Ottoman state and were discriminated against and forced to pay heavy taxes in comparison to the Muslims caused some to convert to Islam as a public charade, but secretly these "Linovamvakoi" continued to worship Christ in underground churches and keep Greek culture alive.

Three hundred and seven years of brutal Ottoman oppression and degeneration ended when on June 4 1878 Turkey sold Cyprus to the British in return for military assistance. The 1923 Treaty of Lausanne sealed the end of any notion of a legitimate Turkish claim to the overwhelmingly Greek populated island. Article 21 of the treaty gave the minority Turkish speaking Muslims the choice of leaving the island completely and becoming Turkish citizens, or staying on Cyprus as British nationals.

When after World War 2 the Cypriot people demanded to be freed of the British yoke following the example of other Crown Colonies, Turkey reneged on the treaties which bound it and began a campaign of state sponsored terrorism against the majority of Cypriots both Christians and Muslims that wanted independence and democracy. This campaign of terror in Cyprus was carried out in parallel with a Turkish government orchestrated campaign to exterminate the indigenous Greeks of Asia-Minor and Constantinople. In November 1957 the TMT Terrorist Organisation was formed by Rauf Denktash, and was funded and trained by Turkey.

On 12 June 1958 eight innocent unarmed Greek Cypriot civilians from Kondemenos village were murdered by T.M.T. terrorists near the Turkish Cypriot populated village of Geunyeli in an totally unprovoked attack, after being dropped off there by the British authorities. After this the Turkish government ordered the TMT to blow up the offices of the Turkish press office in Nicosia in order to falsely put the blame of the Greek Cypriots and prevent independence negotiations from succeeding. It also began a string of assassinations and murders of prominent Turkish Cypriot supporters of independence.

In the following year, after the conclusion of the independence agreements on Cyprus, the Turkish Navy sent a ship to Cyprus fully loaded with arms for the TMT Terrorists which was caught red-handed in the infamous "Deniz" incident.

Cyprus finally gained its independence from British colonialism on 16th August 1960 but at the price of an unworkable and divisive constitution imposed on it by the British to satisfy Turkey which violated the democratic rights of the Greek Cypriot majority and made Cyprus ungovernable due to the unreasonable vetoes and unrepresentative numerical quotas that were given to the 18% Muslim minority that bore no relation to their numbers and which allowed Turkey to use them as pawns to interfere in Cyprus internal affairs and destabilise the country. After the government was repeatedly forced into deadlock and all major legislation and the budget were repeatedly vetoed by the Muslims at the behest of Turkey, President Makarios proposed 13 amendments to the constitution in order to make it workable by bringing it in line with the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and international democratic norms. At the same time the Akritas plan was drawn up in order to deal with the threat of Turkish state sponsored terrorism which was predicted would intensify.

In December 1963 after years of violent intimidation of both Muslims and Christians by Dektash's TMT, the campaign of Turkish state sponsored against the people of Cyprus reached its climax as the TMT was discovered to be in possession of vast quantifies of illegal Turkish supplied arms and now outgunned the Cyprus authorities. Turkey used the violence which it organised as a cover to send commandos into Cyprus who were to collude with the TMT and the Turkish battalion that was stationed there under the so-called Treaty of Guarantee so as to capture the Nicosia to Kyrenia main highway to use as a bridge-head for a full scale invasion. Despite UN and international condemnation Turkey mounted waves of indiscriminate air strikes and chemical weapons attacks using napalm on civilians in Muslim and Christian villages and on the newly formed National Guard which was given a UN mandate to restore the peace.

In 1967 Turkey was behind another wave of violent aggression when its military and terrorist militias seized the strategically important Larnaka to Limasol highway and attacked anyone who tried to use the road including UN peace keepers who tired to re-open it. Seven months earlier America in collusion with the king of Greece had organised a milltary coup and installed a fascist junta to do its bidding. Instead of taking action against Turkey which was using terror to destabilise the Republic of Cyprus, the Greek juntas American paymasters acquiesced to Turkish demands and forced the junta to withdraw the 20,000 strong Greek garrison that had been brought to Cyprus in 1964 in accordance with the UN mandate of resolution 186(1964) to keep the peace and thus left Cyprus completely defenceless and open to any attack.

On July 20th 1974 after nearly seven years of relative calm, the Turkish military without provocation unleashed a third premeditated attack against the island of Cyprus in violation of the Article 2 Paragraph 4 of the UN Charter and explicit UN Resolutions which stipulated that Turkey had no right to intervene in Cyprus affairs as well as Article 27 of the Lausanne Treaty, on the pretext of a failed American CIA organised coup ordered by Henry Kissinger to assassinate President Makarios. Thousands of heavily armed Turkish invasion troops landed in the Greek Cypriot dominated town of Kyrenia and proceeded to attack and ethnically cleanse the Greek Cypriot population.

On August 14th in violation a UN cease-fire, 3 weeks after democratic Government had been restored, the Turkish invasion continued. Further reinforcements were shipped into the less than 5% of Cyprus territory which had already been captured by the Turks and UN Peacekeepers were deliberately fired upon and killed. Britain deliberately prevented the UN from taking action to stop the Turkish invasion and took no action to stop the invasion and genocide of the Greek Cypriots in violation its own status as a guarantor power because it wanted Cyprus to be permanently partitioned.

Using its heavy forces in conjunction with renewed napalm and bombing raids against civilians Turkey attacked and captured over 37% of the territory belonging to the defenceless island Republic, whose National Guard consisted of less than 1,000 men, 35 (or so) old WW2 Tanks and no air force or navy to speak of, whereas Turkey had naval landing craft with over 40,000 heavily armed troops, 400 tanks and full air cover.

The Greek Cypriot majority who legally owned ninety percent of the land and property in the northern third of Cyprus were forced to leave their ancestral homes through a systematic process of ethnic cleansing. Those who refused to go willingly were dragged out of their homes and beaten or raped. The Greek Cypriots who were taken captured were imprisoned in Concentration Camps located both in occupied Cyprus and in Turkey, to which the UN and Red Cross were denied free access. Over 1,600 Greek Cypriots including women and children, known to have been sent to these concentration camps are still unaccounted for.

The total of number of displaced persons was in the region of 200,000 or 1/3 of the total Cypriot population, which numbered 600,000. This is the same as 20 million people being ethnically cleansed from a county the size of the United Kingdom or 100 million people being ethnically cleansed from the United States.

The Turkish army following the orders of prime Minster Bullent Ecevitand using the captured Greek Cypriots as hostages threatened Cyprus with the further invasion of the free areas and sanctioned the bombing of Greek and Turkish Cypriot villages and air-and-chemical-weapons strikes on civilians, unless the Republic of Cyprus and the UN and the British Bases authorities consented to the transfer of the Turkish Cypriots living in the free areas to the north against their will.

After a new "cease-fire" was called 20,000 Greek Orthodox and Maronite Cypriots still remained enclaved in the north in 1975 but through systematic persecution and the deliberate violation of their rights (as judged by the ECHR) their number has now fallen to less than 300 and thus the almost complete ethnic cleansing of the occupied areas by Turkey has been achieved.

Even the Turkish speaking Cypriot Muslims have now been almost completely replaced in Cyprus by over 150,000 Turkish Colonists brought to Cyprus in violation of the Geneva Convention. Out of the original population of 110,000 Muslim Cypriots who lived in Cyprus, only between 60,000 and 85,000 remain, the rest being forced to emigrate through economic hardship brought on by the Turkish occupation and intimidation by the colonists from the Turkish mainland.

On 13th February 1975 Turkey declared occupied Cyprus a federated Turkish State which was condemned in UN Security Council Resolution 367(1975). In 1983 Turkey formed the "Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus", condemned in UN Security Council Resolutions 541(1983) & 550(1984). Having failed to gain international recognition for this illegal entity, Turkey now plans the complete annexation of the occupied areas.

The Turkish Military has stationed 40,000 heavily armed Troops in occupied Cyprus, together with 400 Tanks and has two Navel Bases, which it claims are needed to protect the Turkish Cypriots, but in reality they are there to stop the Turkish Cypriots from rebelling and prevent the enforcement of over 100 UN Security Council resolutions which demand that full control of its territory is restored to the Republic of Cyprus and that the refugees are allowed to return to their homes.

Turkey to this day has not shown any sign of repentance or remorse for the atrocities that it and the Ottoman Empire perpetrated against the people of Cyprus and instead of recognising or acknowledging its crimes against humanity, glorifies the perpetrators as national heroes while the world looks on in silence.

A grieving mother holding photos of her missing son.
1600+ men, women and children still missing

Greek Cypriots taken prisoner and transported to Turkey.
up to 70,000 held hostage in concentration camps

A Greek Cypriot napalmed by the Turkish air-force.
5000+ massacred

Greek Cypriots subjected to humiliating and degrading treatment.
thousands raped and tortured
200,000 ethnically cleansed

Christian gave stones smashed by the Turks.
500+ churches desecrated or destroyed

The murder of Tasos Isaac.
murders of refugees continue to this day

The murder of Solomos Solomou.

2001/2009 HEC and Argyros Argyrou. Updated on 22 July 2009.