Qa-29, 3 May 2019, Statement Of The Spokesperson Of The Ministry Of Foreign Affairs, Mr. Hami Aksoy, In Response To A Question Regarding The Invitation Of The Greek Cypriot Administration Of Southern Cyprus To The Change Of Command Ceremony For Saceur

Republic Of Turkey Ministry Of Foreign Affairs 03.05.2019

The invitation of the representatives of the Greek Cypriot Administration of Southern Cyprus, which does not have any status whatsoever before NATO, amongst other EU members to the change of command ceremony for SACEUR that took place today (3 May) at SHAPE Headquarters in Mons, Brussels, was a gross blunder that cannot be explained in good faith.

We condemn this irresponsible behaviour, which, we understand, was upon SHAPE Headquarters’ own initiative. We deem it necessary to remind on this occasion that the said Headquarters is under the political control of NATO Allies, including Turkey, and it is obliged to act accordingly.

Having been informed about the situation, Turkey did not participate in the change of command ceremony. The necessary steps have been taken in order to bring to light how SHAPE Headquarters committed this unforgiveable mistake.

It should be clear that expecting a positive outcome from such a fait accompli will not contribute to the cooperation between NATO and the EU. We invite NATO authorities to ensure that all Allied structures act in accordance with collective decisions and with the Agreed Framework between the two organizations.

Mehmet Vakur Erkul Ambassador
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