Turkish President Abdullah Gül said in an interview in London on Monday that Turkey should not be expected to make any kind of “gesture” regarding Cyprus simply to remove obstacles to its European Union accession bid.
Gül told the BBC Turkish Service that Turkey should not be expected to make any gesture toward opening its ports to Cypriot vessels. "Turkey makes gestures, but there will not be any need to make a new gesture if your original gesture is not returned. Turkey is not in a position to make a new gesture. The biggest gesture was Turkey's 'yes' vote to the Annan and EU plan in 2004. Turkish Cypriots showed the biggest gesture by supporting that referendum, but they did not receive anything in return."
"We made a call to remove all embargoes in the island on Jan. 24, 2006. They did not accept even that proposal," Gül said.
Gül was in London to receive the Chatham House Prize, awarded annually to a statesman who has made significant contributions to international relations.
Gül said Turkey would respect the results of the referenda regarding Turkey’s accession to the EU some member states planned to hold. "However, Turkish people have something to say on the same issue. Maybe, when the time comes, the Turks will say, 'We have fulfilled the reforms, we have upgraded our standards to EU levels, this is enough for us' and maybe will not feel the need to become a member of the union."