Shortly after the United Nations General Assembly debate of Cyprus began on Monday (8 November) Turkey's ambassador, Mr.
TGV General Assembly (MUTE)
SV Turkish delegate Ilter Turkmen speaking
SV Cyprus Foreign Minister John Christophides speaking
SV President Hemilton Shirley Amerasinghe announces result of vote
MR. ILTER TURKMEN: "The Turkish community in Cyprus, like the South African liberation movements, is a political organisation with definite political goals and aspirations. The South African movement is fired to and struggled for attainment of their legitimate rights and majority rule. The Turkish community aspires to and struggles for partnership in the bicommunal republic of Cyprus and to safeguarding its legitimate rights in an independent sovereign Cyprus.
JOHN CHRISTOPHIDES: "My delegation strongly opposes the Turkish motion. And any change from the decision taken and this is for several reasons. The Turkish Cypriot community is a minority community in a state member duly represented in this organisation by its legitimate government which is recognised as such by the total membership of the Untied Nations, with the exception, of course, of Turkey. As such, the Turkish Cypriot community cannot appear in the plenary, which is a form reserved for governments. Otherwise, we would suggest that a very dangerous precedent would be created, opening a Pandora's box for any dissident group, tribe or community of member states who claim to speak in this Assembly.
ASSEMBLY PRESIDENT, MR. HAMILTON SHIRLEY AMERASINGHE: "The result of the Turkish motion to reconsider is as follows In favour - 23, against - 70, abstentions - 35. The motion is rejected."
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Background: Shortly after the United Nations General Assembly debate of Cyprus began on Monday (8 November) Turkey's ambassador, Mr. Ilter Turkmen, pressed for a Turkish-Cypriot to be allowed to take part in the debate. The Assembly had previously refused to allow such participation. Mr. Turkmen moved a motion to this effect but it was convincingly beaten 70-23.
SYNOPSIS: Mr. Turkmen spoke first but his proposal was strongly attacked by Cyprus Foreign Minister, John Christophides.