Turkey’s chief European Union negotiator, Egemen Bagis, denied reports that Turkey has agreed with the EU to open its ports to vessels from Cyprus, the state-run Anatolia news agency said.
Bagis said in a Twitter message that the reports were untrue, Anatolia reported. Turkey’s position that it will open ports to Cypriot traffic only in return for the simultaneous opening of Cypriot ports to Turkish vessels is well known, the agency reported him as saying in response to a question.
Cyprus is an EU member that is represented by the Greek Cypriot government. The north of the island has been occupied by Turkish troops since they invaded in 1974 following a coup by supporters of a union with Greece. The EU has demanded that Turkey open its ports to Cyprus to be considered for membership of the bloc.
NTV-MSNBC is among news agencies that said earlier today that Turkey had agreed to open its ports to Cypriot vessels. The broadcaster didn’t say where it obtained the information.