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Tuesday, August 24, 2010

19 and July 20, 1974

19 and July 20, 1974

Nikos Stelgia

Date: 24.08.2010 | 10:52


The day I met him in the law firm he was immersed in thoughts and concerns. His main concern was the deadlock property issue. By entering his office, the Turkish Cypriot lawyer looked at me in the eye and placed bitterly about the attitude of Cypriots in one of the sensitive aspects of the Cyprus problem. "Both sides faced the issue from the political standpoint. But from a legal standpoint, things are very simple. According to the latest decision of the ECHR, the G / C should turn on the Compensation Committee, which effectively marks the international recognition of the Turkish occupation of the island. Based on the fact that the Turkish side is unable to fulfill any legal requirement (payments, proper legal procedure etc), the G / C will then have to resort to testify and call other the obvious and the condemnation of Turkey for overshadowing the basic principles of law in Cyprus. In parallel, the T / C should be entitled to compensation for the properties in the southern Cyprus. This is the only way out, which persistently ignored by all sides”.

A brilliant mind of the Turkish Cypriot community, the lawyer Baris Mamali clarified with scientific precision the legal way to a complex issue such as property. However, there is an important question: Is the property and throughout the whole Cyprus issue, a simple legal issue should be solved by bureaucrats and lawyers behind closed doors? What about the social dimensions? Do we think about the imaginary signifier that we have created? A signifier that has trapped the entire island ...

July 19, 1974

Heat unbearable. I leave behind me a bit of Nicosia, where I met Mr. Mamali and return back to the 'European' part. As I run I get a little refreshing oasis with welcoming eyes full of curiosity and interest in the positions Mr. Mamali. I violate journalistic standards. What if the "Kathimerini" will be in kiosks on Sunday? The Cypriots are anxious for property issue and they expect answers to their unanswered questions. So I pass to the perspective of Mr. Mamali.

Cypriots convey what they hear with great caution. As I complete my words I slow down. Here's a deathly silence. A full meaningful silence. After a few minutes the silence collapses. Below is a brief monologue: "We do not agree with the positions Mr. Mamali. You know, there are fixed mechanisms and structures that constitute the reality of this island. What if I remain for a life of refugee? A daywWill come when I will send my daughter to buy a cottage in the occupied areas to live in the place where ancestors lived.

Silence. I hesitate for a few minutes to answer. But at the same time I feel the need to say something that has escaped the attention of my interlocutor: the return of Famagusta relates to 2010 and not the one left behind refugee family on July 19, 1974. Is the family to reconcile with a Famagusta of today, where many municipal structures will be run by t/c?

The response goes off every trace of doubt: "I do not forget, I will go back to July 19, 1974”.

July 20, 1974

My goal is not an endless discussion. The ruler of this land, Cypriot interlocutor has a single desire: to return to Famagusta, which was left behind on July 19, 1974. I respect the wishes of the imaginary signifier of this place.

But at the same time I think the fellow in the other side of the green line. The entire Turkish Cypriot community lives to the rhythm of its own imaginary signifier. Having repelled to the unconscious of what happened on July 19, 1974 and before, the community welcomes the date - a milestone in the modern history of the community: July 20, 1974. A significant proportion of Turkish Cypriots worried about the impact of the landing of Turkish forces in Cyprus. But at the same time they believe that in the Famagusta July 19, 1974 there was no room for survival for the entire Turkish Cypriot community. Thus, results in a single conclusion: The contribution in the political arena of Famagusta and in the arena of the European Cyprus are to ensure the continuity of its presence in the island. Chauvinist elements from the other side come to give dimensions to this perspective: No peaceful coexistence throughout the island, so a monopoly on a piece of the island.

19 and 20 July, that summer, full of army boots, tanks ... Have Cyprus, society and negotiators been occupied by these two dates? No other option for this island?

Of course there are options ... Take time to talk honestly and without masks for 2010 ... time to arrange the return of the small Famagustan girl to Famagusta of 2010 ...


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