President Ersin Tatar participates in reception held in his honour by the Ambassador of the Republic of Türkiye Ufuk Gezer in Sydney

President Ersin Tatar has participated in a reception held in his honour by Ufuk Gezer, Ambassador of the Republic of Türkiye.


The reception, which took place at the Residency of the Consulate of the Republic of Türkiye, was also attended by prominent members of the Turkish and Turkish Cypriot community of Sydney.

Addressing the reception, President Tatar expressed his gratitude to Ambassador Ufuk Gezer and the staff of the embassy and consulate for hosting the reception in his honour.

Stating that he is the first President of the TRNC in history to be visiting Australia following the invitation extended to him by Turkish Cypriot civil organisations to take part in celebrations marking the 80th anniversary of Turkish Cypriot culture and traditions in the country, President Tatar said: “The process of coming to Australia actually goes back to the period of our late Founding President, Rauf Denktaş, and other presidents also wanted to come here.  However, they were faced with the obstructionist policy of the Greek-Greek Cypriot side.”

President Tatar stated that during the pandemic period and thereafter, online meetings were held with Australian-based civil organisation representatives. “I wanted to hold these online meetings because I attribute great importance to our community in Australia, who started to first move here some 80 years ago. During these meetings, the representatives of civil groups expressed the strong desire of our community for me to visit Australia. The process has taken three years, and I am here to express my gratitude to my community, who have enriched the social and cultural life of multicultural Australia,” President Tatar said.

Stating that he has visited the Australian War Memorial in Canberra and visited the Atatürk Monuments in Canberra and Sydney due to the Çanakkale wars of 1914, President Tatar said: “I am happy to have seen the high-level respect and appreciation of the Australian people towards Atatürk, which is displayed in different parts of the country.”

President Tatar, in reference to the first arrival of Turkish Cypriots in Australia, said: “The arrival of our people, of our culture and traditions, stretches back to the 1940s.  Our People migrated to different countries outside the Island of Cyprus, due to the oppression they faced under the British colonial rule, and the aspiration of the Greek Cypriot People to unite Cyprus with Greece.”

“Long gone are the days when it used to take months for people and even posted letters to be transported between Cyprus and Australia, due to technological advancements and the internet,” he said.

“Australia has a significant number of Turkish Cypriots living here after Türkiye and the UK who have entered the fourth generation. It has come to my attention that the Turkish Cypriots used to lay wreaths at the Çanakkale monuments at ceremonies in Australia – even before the arrival of people from the Republic of Türkiye and I wish to commend and pay tribute to the Turkish Cypriots of Australia, who were the first Turks to have migrated here.  We are proud of the achievements of our people, who have been successful in different walks of life, and contributing to the cultural diversity in Australia.”

President Tatar also referred to the Cyprus issue where he said: “The Turkish Cypriot People are continuing to face a great injustice.  Despite being one of the equal co-founders of the partnership Republic of Cyprus, the Turkish Cypriots were expelled from the state apparatus by force of arms in December 1963.  A few months later, in March 1964, the UN adopted Resolution 186 to deploy UN peacekeepers to Cyprus which unfortunately also treated the Greek Cypriots as the sole government which continues to date. We were subjected to island-wide attacks and acts of genocide for 11 years until 1974.  Turkish Cypriots, who were forced to live in small enclaves squeezed into 3 per cent of the island’s territory, have effectively been governing themselves as a State, determined to resist all attempts by the Greek-Greek Cypriot duo, to unite Cyprus with Greece.  On July 15, 1974, a coup d’etat was staged by the Greek Junta, and the ‘Hellenic Republic of Cyprus’ was declared. Archbishop Makarios himself told the UN Security Council that “Greece invaded Cyprus”. If it was not for the Cyprus Peace Operation by our Motherland and Guarantor Türkiye on July 20, 1974 – which we will be celebrating with joy on its 50th anniversary next month, there would not have been any Turkish Cypriot left to save.”

President Tatar explained that the Turkish Cypriot People voluntarily moved to the North and the Greek Cypriots to the South of the Island, in accordance with the Population Exchange Agreement that was reached between the two Sides in 1975.

President Tatar stated that the Turkish Cypriot People have worked arduously for an equality-based settlement, for more than half-a-century. “However, the Greek Cypriot mentality, which sees Cyprus as being a Hellenic Island, has been the main obstacle for a solution in Cyprus. The Greek Cypriots have rejected at least 15 settlement plans – as publicly written by the  former Greek Cypriot Foreign Minister late Nicos Rolandis.”

President Tatar stated that in April 2004 a UN Comprehensive Settlement [Annan] Plan was put to a separately held simultaneous referenda on both sides of the Island. “The Greek Cypriot people voted against the plan by 76 per cent, whilst the Turkish Cypriots voted to accept it by 65 per cent. The Greek Cypriots were a week later accepted as a member of the EU, whilst the promises to end the isolation and restrictions on the Turkish Cypriot People by the international community have never been honoured.”

Stating that a new round of negotiations again collapsed in Crans-Montana in July 2017 which were the “last and final attempt to reach a federal based settlement,” President Tatar added: “The reason why negotiations have failed for more than half-a-century is because of the refusal of the Greek Cypriot Side to share power and prosperity with the Turkish Cypriot People.We are now saying that we have withdrawn our consent from the tried, failed and exhausted basis. We are saying it is time to think outside the federal box, and to open a new page in Cyprus for a realistic and sustainable settlement.”

Stressing that he won the election on his new vision and position for a two State settlement in Cyprus, President Tatar said: “A settlement in Cyprus can be reached on the basis of our sovereign equality and equal international status, which is our inherent right, which is a position fully supported by the Republic of Türkiye.”

Explaining that a sustainable settlement can be reached on the basis of neighbourly relations of the two Sides that are in a cooperative relationship, President Tatar said: I have stated to the Personal Envoy of the UN Secretary-General the issues and obstructionist approach of the Greek Cypriot side towards the Turkish Cypriot People. We have repeatedly stated that the isolation on the Turkish Cypriot people needs to be ended by the international community, which is not only our inherent right, but a promise made by the international community.”

Referring to the addresses of President of the Republic of Türkiye, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, at the 77th and 78th sessions of the UN General Assembly,  President Tatar said: “President Erdoğan has called upon the international community to forge diplomatic, economic and political links with my country, and to end the isolation that is tantamount to persecution of my people. President Erdoğan called upon the world to formally recognise thew TRNC.  I wish to express my upmost gratitude to President Erdoğan for these calls, which has strengthened my position for a two State settlement in Cyprus.”

President Tatar stated that the TRNC has, with the full support of President Erdoğan and the Turkish Government, been accepted as an observer member of the Organisation of Turkic States (OTS) in 2022, and is continuing to develop relations with Turkic countries across different areas.

The President remarked that he also paid a visit to Baku, Azerbaijan, on the invitation of President İlham Aliyev – and said he will be visiting Azerbaijan again to attend the OTS summit in in July.

President Tatar stated that “Cyprus is a national cause for Türkiye and the TRNC,” adding that “our struggle for justice and the reaffirmation and acceptance of our sovereignty and State to take its rightful place in the international community will continue”.

Stating that the Island of Cyprus is located in a geopolitical and geostrategic region, with the TRNC being the most southern Turkish state located in the eastern Mediterranean, President Tatar said: “It is with these thoughts that I wish to express my thanks to Ambassador Gezer for hosting this reception. I am very happy to be in Australia to take part in the celebrations in Sydney and Melbourne that are commemorating the 80th anniversary of the arrival of Turkish Cypriot culture and traditions in multicultural Australia.  I am here to strengthen the bridge between the TRNC and our community in Australia, and to embrace them, and to thank our community for their love and devotion to the TRNC and your support to our national cause, which is a search for justice and freedom.”

President Tatar added: “I know that despite being thousands of miles away from the TRNC, our hearts beat together for our TRNC, which is the symbol of the sovereignty and independence of the Turkish Cypriot People.  I am here to embrace our community and to tell them that we recognise and acknowledge their successes and their existence in Australia.”