| CYPRUS PROBLEM |Özgür Gazete



The incredible fear felt towards the Imagine project is nothing new.

Do you remember;

The appointed President Ersin Tatar, just before heading off to Geneva to attend the 5+1 Cyprus Conference in April last year had given an interview to the Sunday Express during which he pointed out the UK which had left the EU could now treat both sides equally as a neutral guarantor state and that it should recognize “North Cyprus as a sovereign country.

Do you know; the only funny excuse on which Tatar based his argument was; “The youth on both sides who speak a different language do not know each other anymore, which is why we can’t have peace or a federation.”


We can understand why the Imagine project scares Tatar and the appointed government so much and the reason why he prevented the project by looking at the short history of the AKP [Justice and Development Party] in Turkey and the similar regime it wants to create in northern Cyprus.


What was the Imagine Project?
It was the peace culture education programme of the Bi-communal Technical Committee on Education that succeeded in bringing together more than 6 thousand students from both communities within the framework of confidence-building activities since 2016.


What were they teaching the children?
To manage discrimination they may face within their own community or from the other community, to understand prejudices, to be able to interpret information in a critical fashion, to raise awareness on disadvantaged groups, to develop communication skills, to embrace plurality, to encourage equality and tolerance, to deal with problems such as racism, discrimination and xenophobia, to understand the importance of democratic decision-making mechanisms and to foster a culture of solidarity and understanding…

In other words, a peaceful life.
In other words, the importance of peace in Cyprus and the world.
The value of equality, and justice.
Awareness against injustices, racism, discrimination and hostile policies…
In short, the most undesired things by fascist and breakaway regimes.


In which areas did the fascist and conservative AKP regime and the Fethullah Gülen community [movement] – which grew and filled all government positions with its support, in fact, becoming strong enough to plan a coup – work since the AKP came to power?
You guessed right!
Influencing adults in any way is much harder than raising them that way from childhood.

And since the objectives of such regimes are not short-term, the work and plans carried out on the path to achieving their goals naturally are long-term.

To allow headscarves from primary school onwards and in fact encourage it, the legal and illegal Koran courses offered across the country, the Mescids [prayer rooms] opened at schools, the mosques constructed everywhere, compulsory religion classes for children, etc…

These regimes that set out with the slogan “As the twig is bent, so grows the tree” know that it is easier to raise a generation with weak questioning skills which conform to their way of thinking than to influence adults.

Think of all the schools and dorms spanning the world that belong to Fethullah Gülen.
The clearest explanation for the spread and strengthening of the community is the children who were raised in these schools.

And thus, these children made their way into Turkey’s state and military cadres, to the most critical positions.


Fethullah Gülen-style practices of the AKP, of course, did not change after its relations with the community fell through. The same method is being considered in the northern part of Cyprus.

That is why we are talking about sending girls to secondary schools wearing headscarves in this country. That’s why we are talking about administrators who force their staff to take religious courses during working hours.

That is why we see mosques being built everywhere, and theology schools opening. That’s why Tatar and his goons who can not recite a single prayer go to Friday prayers and pose before the cameras.

In short, this incredible fear felt towards the Imagine project and the decision to ban it is part of the non-solution and annexation policies that AKP is imposing on our country which, the UBP [National Unity Party] regime is gladly collaborating in implementing.

This is not some small detail.

There are things that they want to teach our children;
Like enmity,
Like extreme nationalism,
Like racism,
Like war mongering.
They will make this happen the second we fail to raise a strong opposition.
They will do this with imported teachers,
And if need be they will do it using pressure.
The General Secretary of the Left Movement, Abdullah Korkmazhan said this the other day;

The appointment of Metin Feyzioğlu, the demand by Foreign Minister Tahsin Ertuğruloğlu for the “UN to leave the north”, the head of the Prime Ministry Audit Commission Halil Talaykurt taking his staff to religious courses, the new organisational set up by the Police General Directorate at the Freedom Fighters Complex [Translator’s note: a complex of buildings owned by the military in Nicosia] under the supervision of administrators from Turkey and much more.
None of these are a coincidence.

All of these are parts of a greater plan designed in one place.
Therefore, if we don’t raise our voices and take a stand against,
The outcome of the plan is obvious.


As a believer of peace and freedom in Cyprus, I am a person who struggles for this, and practices journalism not only as a profession but also with an ideological consciousness. I am proud to work and generate ideas for our country and communities in particular and for the whole world and its peoples in general. That’s all.

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