Turkish Cypriot Leader Ersin Tatar Visits Melbourne

Turkish community Melbourne

Ersin Tatar, the Turkish Cypriot leader of the self-proclaimed “Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus” (TRNC), arrived in Melbourne, Victoria, on Wednesday, May 22, to a warm welcome from the local Turkish community.

Turkish Cypriot Leader Ersin Tatar Visits Melbourne 1

In a Facebook post, Tatar expressed his enthusiasm for visiting Australia to meet and embrace "our wonderful and resilient people who have settled here since the 1940s."

"Cyprus, our homeland, and our state, the TRNC, are in all our hearts and will continue to exist. This is our passion, and together, wherever we are, we are 'one heart'... in Cyprus, Turkey, England, or Australia," Tatar wrote in the post.

Tatar refers to himself as the “President” of the TRNC, a territory recognized only by Turkey.

Tatar’s arrival comes amid tensions with Victoria’s local Cypriot and Greek community.

In 1974, Turkey invaded Cyprus, divided the island by force, and ethnically “cleansed” the massive area overrun by the Turkish army. Five decades later, the island is still divided. That is because none of the major powers have put any real pressure on Turkey, despite many UN resolutions calling for the withdrawal of Turkish forces.

Thus, in 2004, we ended up with the Annan Plan, into which Annan incorporated, even at the last minute, further concessions to Turkey, requested by Turkey but not endorsed by the Greek negotiators. The Cypriots, when asked to vote on the Plan in a referendum, responded with a defiant “no”, seeing it as little more than a way of legitimising and perpetuating the division of the island—and letting Turkey off the hook.

In an email addressed to the Premier of Victoria, the Hon Jacinta Allan MP, concerns have been raised regarding the upcoming visit of Ersin Tatar, the self-proclaimed "President" of the "Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus", to Australia.

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