Saturday 25 May 2019

Turkish Cypriots and Greek Cypriots join forces for Kizilyurek

Esra Aygin

He is showing us the Cyprus that can be.
The Cyprus we want and still struggle for.
The future Cyprus.
Even if we lose, we have won,
because the message is out there already.
- a Greek Cypriot refugee from Varosha.

In a historic act of unity that is transcending barriers, political backgrounds, ethnicities, languages and religions in Cyprus, many Turkish Cypriots and Greek Cypriots are joining forces for the same candidate at the European Elections this Sunday.

In an unprecedented bi-communal bi-lingual island-wide campaign that has come to symbolise unification and federation in Cyprus, Turkish Cypriot professor Niyazi Kizilyurek running on a left-wing AKEL’s - ticket has secured the support of Turkish Cypriots and Greek Cypriots of different political backgrounds. And he is poised to win a seat in the European Parliament with their combined votes.

Through this joint mobilisation, Turkish Cypriots and Greek Cypriots are also disproving decades-old assumptions that it is impossible for the two communities on this divided island to have a joint political movement, vote for each other, and support the same vision.

And this is terrifying many, who are benefitting from the status-quo on both sides, who are labelling him as a “Greek agent” in the northern part of the island, and a “Turkish agent” on the southern part of the island.

This Sunday will be a turning point. Kizilyurek’s victory with the joint support of the two communities will probably be the most important act of reunification in the last 60 years.

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