In Cyprus last Thursday (23 February), the Turkish-Cypriot leader, Mr. Rauf Denktash, laid the blame?
SCU Turkish-Cypriot leader, Rauf Denktash, being interviewed in English in Nicosia (2 shots)
TRANSCRIPT: REPORTER: "Mr. Denktash, what will be the impact for you of Egypt's break with Mr. Kyprianou?"
SEQ. 1: DENKTASH: "Well, I think it will give the world a chance to look at the Cyprus facts again. Because the reality has now come to be too obvious to be ignored. Is there a government of Cyprus? Or was there an administration in the south which made a mess of things for the Egyptians. I think Sadat has discovered that is a fact. It is that administration in the south which has done the messing and not the Turks in the north. And I think the world will realise that too. The second impact will be an understanding of our interests and anxiety over security matters. How important it is from a security point of view that we should not be meddling with international terrorism and international spying which the Greeks have made a centre of in the south. The whole thing from the beginning to the end from the murder in (the) Hilton. (There were so money armed personnel there in charge of security. And none of them moving a finger in order to protect this man or to arrest the criminals afterwards. The...way to Larnaca, 25 miles, and no-one doing anything to arrest these people or to impede the journey. And then all the announcements which happened thereafter. Sadat's statement that he had passed on the codeword which existed between Kyprianou and him that these commandos were coming and he gets the green light. 'Let them come'. Besides this, his presence there, his armed men there, who are the first to attack the Egyptians and therefore creating hell loose. All these indicate that most of the blame certainly rests with the Greek side."
Since the disastrous commando attack (which took place on 19 February), President Sadat of Egypt has withdrawn his country's recognition of Mr. Kyprianou as President of Cyprus. That means by implication that he now follows the Turkish-Cypriot line held by Mr. Denktash that Mr. Kyprianou is only leader of Cyprus's Greek community...the Greek-Cypriots.
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: In Cyprus last Thursday (23 February), the Turkish-Cypriot leader, Mr. Rauf Denktash, laid the blame for the disastrous outcome of the Egyptian commando attack at Cyprus's Larnaca airport on the government of Cyprus President Spyros Kyprianou. Fifteen Egyptians were killed in the attack when they were fired upon by the Cypriot National Guard. The Egyptians were attempting to free hostages from a commandeered plane. The hostages were taken to the plane by two Palestinian gunmen after they had killed an Egyptian newspaper editor at Nicosia's Hilton Hotel. Mr. Denktash is president of the Federated Turkish State of Cyprus which exists without international recognition in the north of the island.