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The ‘Conference on Cyprus’ at Crans Montana, Switzerland, 28 June 2017:

An Open Letter to the Foreign and Commonwealth Secretary of the United Kingdom

For the immediate attention of the Right Honourable Boris Johnson MP, Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, Foreign & Commonwealth Office, HM Government, Whitehall, London and copied to H.E. Matthew Kidd, High Commissioner of the United Kingdom, British High Commission, Alexander Pallis Street, Nicosia

OPEN LETTER

By email to: fcocorrespondence@fco.gov.uk 

Copied to: UKinCyprus@fco.gov.uk

27 June 2017

Dear Mr Johnson

Re: The ‘Conference on Cyprus’ at Crans Montana, Switzerland, 28 June 2017

I refer to my two letters sent to you at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (‘FCO’) by email on 5 January and on 23 June 2017; the latter is reproduced as an Addendum to this letter.  I also refer to my separate letter sent on 11 January 2017 to the Rt Hon Sir Alan Duncan MP, the Minister for Europe.

Cy logo 1a Klearchos 27 12 2016In each of the three auto-response messages which I received by email from the FCO, I obtained the promise of a ‘reply’.  Be that as it may, I have not received the courtesy of any substantive written reply from you, from the Minister for Europe, or from any other representative of Her Majesty’s Government.  

By means of my three said letters dated 5 January, 11 January and 23 June 2017, I posed several questions of considerable importance to the rule of law as it relates to the Republic of Cyprus, a Member State of the United Nations, the Commonwealth, the Council of Europe and the European Union.  These included specific questions on international humanitarian law, international criminal justice, international law generally and other related subjects.  

Needless to say, I am disappointed by the failure of the FCO to provide any substantive written response to my three said letters.  I am all the more disappointed for at least four reasons.  

Firstly, I am a citizen of the United Kingdom who is now working in the Republic of Cyprus, a sovereign state which may be on the verge of being dissolved as a result of whatever is agreed in secret at the ‘Conference on Cyprus’ scheduled to ‘reconvene’ in a few hours.  

Secondly, I am an academic who has devoted a substantial part of his career to promoting the rule of law in the United Kingdom, the Republic of Cyprus and the wider world.  

Thirdly, the United Kingdom has a responsibility to strive to ensure the health, safety and security of British citizens and British military personnel who live or work in the Republic of Cyprus or in the two adjacent British Sovereign Base Areas.  

Fourthly, the United Kingdom has various moral and legal duties towards the Republic of Cyprus.  These duties flow from various sources including the Cyprus Act 1960, the Treaty of Establishment 1960, the Treaty of Guarantee 1960 and the Treaty on European Union.  

For these and for other reasons, I look forward to receiving a written response to my three said letters without any further delay.

In the meantime, I have composed this open letter addressed to you in the light of the ‘News story’ published today, i.e. 27 June 2017, by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (‘the FCO’s news story’.)  This bears the title ‘Foreign Secretary joins crucial Cyprus settlement talks in Switzerland offering full UK support’.  

(Source: ‘Foreign Secretary joins crucial Cyprus settlement talks in Switzerland offering full UK support’, FCO news story, 27 June 2017, published by the FCO at www.gov.uk/government/news/foreign-secretary-joins-crucial-cyprus-settlement-talks-in-switzerland-offering-full-uk-support)

Please let me have a written response to all of the various additional questions set out below.  Some relate to the FCO’s news story.  Others relate to my open letter to the Minister for Europe, dated 11 January 2017.

1. ‘the Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot communities’

To quote the first sentence of the FCO’s news story in full: ‘The Conference on Cyprus will reconvene in the Swiss resort of Crans Montana with the participation of the leaders of the Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot communities, and representatives of the Guarantor Powers (Greece, Turkey and UK).’  With this in mind, why has the FCO misleadingly referred to ‘the Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot communities’?  Put another way, why has the FCO’s news story failed to use the correct expressions found in the Constitution of the Republic of Cyprus, i.e. ‘the Greek Community’ and ‘the Turkish Community’?

(See Articles 1 and 2 of the Constitution of the Republic of Cyprus and the definitions found at Article 186 of the Constitution.  The main body of the Constitution is available online at www.presidency.gov.cy/presidency/presidency.nsf/all/1003AEDD83EED9C7C225756F0023C6AD/$file/CY_Constitution.pdf)

2. ‘the leaders’

The questions below likewise flow from the first sentence of the FCO’s ‘news release’ and its reference to ‘the leaders of the Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot communities’.  With this in mind:

2.1 Upon which legal basis and with which legal powers, if any, did Archbishop Makarios and Dr Fazil Kutchuk sign the London Agreement at the conclusion of the ‘Cyprus Conference’ held at Lancaster House on 19 February 1959?

2.2 The Constitution of the Republic of Cyprus neither creates nor empowers any offices described as ‘leader of the Greek Cypriot community’ or ‘leader of the Turkish Cypriot community’.  Indeed, the very word ‘leader’ is nowhere to be found in the Constitution.  With this in mind, what is the legal basis, if any, of each of the two purported offices so described by the FCO’s news story? 

2.3 What is the legal basis, if any, of the powers purportedly wielded individually or jointly by the purported ‘leaders of the Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot communities’? 

2.4 What is the nature and what is the scope, if any, of the purported powers wielded by the purported ‘leaders of the Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot communities’? 

2.5 Do the purported ‘leaders of the Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot communities’ individually or jointly wield any ‘powers’ to enter into any agreement(s) with Greece, Turkey, the United Kingdom or the European Union?  If so, what is the legal basis of such ‘powers’?

3. The ‘Macmillan Doctrine’ & the Treaty of Guarantee 1960

The first sentence of the FCO’s news story expressly indicates that the parties to the ‘Conference on Cyprus’ will be ‘the leaders of the Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot communities, and representatives of the Guarantor Powers (Greece, Turkey and UK)’.  It would appear to follow, therefore, that the ‘Conference on Cyprus’ is to ‘reconvene’ in line with what I have described in my recent articles as ‘the Macmillan Doctrine’, i.e. a variation of the ‘Adventure in Partnership’ proclaimed in June 1958 by Harold Macmillan, the Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from 1957 until 1963.  

(See Klearchos A. Kyriakides, ‘The ‘Intellectual Partition’ of Cyprus, the ‘Macmillan Doctrine’ and the talks held in Geneva in August 1974 and January 2017’, Agora Dialogue, 9 January 2017, at

http://forum.agora-dialogue.com/2017/01/09/the-intellectual-partition-of-cyprus-the-macmillan-doctrine-and-the-talks-held-in-geneva-in-august-1974-and-january-2017/

By the same token, it would also appear as if the Republic of Cyprus will not be one of the parties at the ‘Conference on Cyprus’.

As I have pointed out in my article published yesterday (and available via the hyperlink below), history provides ample warnings as to the exceptional dangers which may arise if an existing sovereign state is not represented at any ‘Conference’ where its fate may be at stake.  For example, Czechoslovakia was not one of the parties at the ‘Munich Conference’ held on 29 September 1938.  Nor was Czechoslovakia one of the parties to the Munich Agreement reached in secret on that very same date by Germany, France, Italy and the United Kingdom.

(See Klearchos A. Kyriakides, ‘’Democracies Die Behind Closed Doors:  The Chilling Parallels Between the ‘Munich Conference’ and the ‘Conference on Cyprus’, Agora Dialogue, 26 June 2017, at http://forum.agora-dialogue.com/2017/06/26/democracies-die-behind-closed-doors/)

In the light of the above:

3.1 What is the legal basis, if any, of the proposition implicit in the first sentence of the FCO’s news story, i.e. that the ‘Conference on Cyprus’ must involve five parties not including the Republic of Cyprus? 

3.2 On the basis that the Republic of Cyprus is not one of the parties at the ‘Conference on Cyprus’, who will advance or protect the interests of this existing sovereign state? 

3.3 On the basis that the Republic of Cyprus is not one of the parties at the ‘Conference on Cyprus’, how and by whom is the security of the citizens and other lawful residents of the Republic of Cyprus as a collective whole to be advanced or protected? 

3.4 Does the United Kingdom agree with my proposition that no steps should be taken to dissolve the Republic of Cyprus, to transform it into a ‘bi-communal, bi-zonal federation’ in line with the post-1964 demands of Turkey or to negotiate any new treaty involving Turkey in the absence of: (i) free and fair consultation exercises open to everybody including all citizens and lawful residents of the Republic of Cyprus and of the European Union of which the Republic forms part; (ii) the completion and publication of risk assessments relating to all pertinent matters impinging upon the health, safety or security of people; and (iii) referenda held in each and every one of the 28 Member States of the European Union?  In my submission, these propositions are all the more important in view of the transformation of Turkey into a tyranny, the threatening statements which have been made by its President and the overall conduct of Turkey in recent years.

(Note: By asking Question 3.4 above, I am not in any endorsing the proposed dissolution or the Republic of Cyprus or its transformation into a ‘bi-communal, bi-zonal federation’. Nor am I endorsing the segregationist concept of ‘separate, simultaneous referenda’.   However, I am taking into account the various matters which I have set out in Klearchos A. Kyriakides, ‘The Search for Security via Answers to Questions on Law, Criminal Justice and Impunity’, Agora Dialogue, 17 June 2017, at

http://forum.agora-dialogue.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/06/K.-A.-Kyriakides-Working-Paper-for-Agora-Dialogue-as-at-17.06.17-as-amended-on-19.06.2017.pdf 

3.5 In view of the fact that Turkey does not recognise the Republic of Cyprus, why does the FCO’s news release describe Turkey as a ‘Guarantor Power’?

4. ‘a united Cyprus’

In two separate sentences, the FCO’s news release refers to the prospect of ‘a united Cyprus’.  With this in mind:

4.1 Do you agree with me that it is misleading, or apt to mislead, for the FCO to refer to ‘a united Cyprus’ in the context of the division and segregation inherent in the proposed ‘bi-communal, bi-zonal federation’?  If not, why not? 

4.2 Do you agree with me that it is misleading, or apt to mislead, for the FCO to refer to the prospect of ‘a united Cyprus’ while at the same time propagating the divisive idea that the citizens of the same sovereign state must remain divided into two different ‘communities’ (a word appearing three times in the FCO’s news release) and two different ‘sides’ (a word appearing twice in the FCO’s news release)?  If not, why not?

4.3 Do you agree with me that it is misleading, or apt to mislead, for the FCO to refer to ‘a united Cyprus’ in the context of the sustained division of the territory of the Island of Cyprus by means of the presence of British Sovereign Base Areas, truncated in size or otherwise?  If not, why not?

(In relation to the questions raised above, see Klearchos A. Kyriakides, ‘What does ‘reunification’ really mean?’, Agora Dialogue, 22 May 2017, at

http://forum.agora-dialogue.com/2017/05/22/what-does-reunification-really-mean/)

5. My open letter to Sir Alan Duncan MP, the Minister for Europe, dated 11 January 2017

To quote the second sentence of the FCO’s news story: ‘The Foreign Secretary, Boris Johnson’s attendance [at the ‘Conference on Cyprus’] demonstrates the UK’s ongoing support and commitment to the settlement process.’  I am surprised to read this.  I would have expected you, as Foreign and Commonwealth Secretary, to have recused yourself from the ‘Conference on Cyprus’ in view of the appearance of a conflict of interest.  I make this submission mindful of your your past role and, it would appear, your ongoing status as President of the Anglo-Turkish Society under the Patronage of ‘the Turkish Ambassador’ and ‘the British Ambassador to Turkey’. 

(See the website of the Society at www.angloturkishsociety.org.uk/members.html and page 19 of the latest List of Minsters’ Interests dated December 2016, at www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/579769/List_of_Ministerial_Interests_December_2016.pdf)   

I first referred to the above matter in my open letter to Sir Alan Duncan MP, the Minister for Europe, dated 11 January 2017 and published at http://forum.agora-dialogue.com/2017/01/11/an-open-letter-to-a-british-minister/  However, as noted earlier, I have not received any response to this letter. 

In view of the above:

5.1 What action, if any, was taken by or on behalf of the Minister for Europe upon receipt by the FCO of my open letter addressed to him, dated 11 January 2017?  If any action was taken, what was the outcome?  If no action was taken, why was no action taken?      

5.2 Why has neither the Minister for Europe nor the Prime Minister responded to me in writing in response to the specific question set out in my said open letter, dated 11 January 2017, as reproduced below?

‘By occupying a dual role as President of the Anglo-Turkish Society and as Foreign and Commonwealth Secretary, does Mr Johnson appear to have a conflict of interest, particularly as regards any dealings which he may have with Turkey, the Republic of Cyprus and the two communities established under the Constitution of the latter, namely the Greek Community and the Turkish Community?’ 

5.3 Will the Minister for Europe or the Prime Minister please respond forthwith to the question reproduced at 5.2 above?

5.4 Why has neither the Minister for Europe nor the Prime Minister responded to me in writing in response to the specific requests made in the two paragraphs of my open letter dated 11 January 2017, as reproduced below?

‘… I refer you to paragraph 1.2.f on page 1 of the Ministerial Code: ‘Ministers must ensure that no conflict arises, or appears to arise, between their public duties and their private interests;’.  In consequence, please clarify whether the Foreign and Commonwealth Secretary has hitherto recused himself from any meetings or decisions, including decisions taken collectively by the Cabinet or any Cabinet Committees, which impinge directly or indirectly on Turkey or the Republic of Cyprus or any of its two communities.  At the same time, please confirm whether the Foreign and Commonwealth Secretary will recuse himself from attending the forthcoming ‘talks’ in Geneva and that he will play no role in any decision-making processes relating to those ‘talks’ and any subsequent developments.

‘In view of the above, I will be grateful if you could refer this matter to the Prime Minister and the Cabinet Secretary kindly draw their attention to paragraph 1.3 of the Ministerial Code.  Under paragraph 1.3: ‘It is not the role of the Cabinet Secretary or other officials to enforce the Code. If there is an allegation about a breach of the Code, and the Prime Minister, having consulted the Cabinet Secretary feels that it warrants further investigation, he will refer the matter to the independent adviser on Ministers’ interests.’  (Source: The Ministerial Code, as updated and published by the Cabinet Office in December 2016 at: www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/579752/ministerial_code_december_2016.pdf last accessed on 11 January 2017.)’

5.5 Will the Minister for Europe or the Prime Minister please respond forthwith to the matters raised at 5.4 above?

5.6 Since submitting my open letter, dated 11 January 2017, the Supreme Court of the United Kingdom has handed down its judgment in the Brexit case of R (Miller & Anor) v Secretary of State for Exiting the European Union [2017] UKSC 5.  In addition, the United Kingdom has served a notice on the European Union under Article 50(2) of the Treaty on European Union.  With these pivotal developments in mind, will you, the Minister for Europe or the Prime Minister please respond forthwith to the matters set out at paragraphs 15 and 16 of my said open letter, as reproduced below:

‘15. … I will be grateful if you or the Prime Minister could provide an undertaking that Her Majesty’s Government will not exercise any prerogative powers which have the effect of committing the United Kingdom to any agreement, treaty or other binding or enforceable engagement which has the effect of: (i) bringing about the dissolution of the Republic of Cyprus; (ii) altering in any way the status of the Republic of Cyprus as established by the Cyprus Act 1960; (iii) taking away, replacing, undermining or otherwise affecting the constitutional rights guaranteed by the Constitution of the Republic of Cyprus, which was created by section 1 of the Cyprus Act 1960; (iv) altering or otherwise affecting the ‘boundaries’ of the ‘two areas’ mentioned in section 2 of the Cyprus Act 1960, i.e. the two Sovereign Base Areas, or the ‘boundaries’ of the Republic of Cyprus; or (v) triggering any process or procedure which relates to points (i) to (iv).

‘16. I will also be grateful if you or the Prime Minister could provide an undertaking that should Her Majesty’s Government ever deem it appropriate to bring about any of the outcomes specified in points (i) to (v) of the previous paragraph: firstly, Her Majesty’s Government and the Administrator of the Sovereign Base Areas will launch fair and otherwise lawful consultation exercises on all relevant matters; and, subject thereto, secondly, Her Majesty’s Government will seek the consent of Parliament and HM The Queen, via the introduction of a bill envisaging the enactment of primary legislation in the form of an Act of Parliament which repeals or amends the Cyprus Act 1960 and any relevant delegated legislation made thereunder.’

I look forward to hearing from you, in response to the various matters set out above.  In that regard, please be aware that I intend to disclose in my forthcoming publications any replies which I receive.  Please also be aware that the views expressed in my various letters and publications reflect my personal views and not those of any organisation with which I have or have had any association.

Finally, as the fate of the Republic of Cyprus hangs in the balance, I would invite you to pause and reflect upon the unethical foundations upon which the ‘Conference on Cyprus’ and the proposed ‘bi-communal, bi-zonal federation’ both rest.  These foundations include the unconscionable diplomatic deal struck over the telephone at 1.45pm on 14 August 1974, i.e. the date on which Turkey launched its second invasion of the Republic of Cyprus.  The deal was struck by one of your predecessors as British Foreign and Commonwealth Secretary, James Callaghan, in company with Dr Henry Kissinger, the then US Secretary of State.  I end this open letter by quoting from the FCO’s own ‘Record’ of the Callaghan-Kissinger telephone conversation:   

Foreign Secretary [Callaghan]:  Henry, if I can put the position in a nutshell, I think it comes to this: that the Turks have got a good case.  In my view this can now only be resolved by the creation of a zone.  A zone in which they will have autonomy within a federal republic.  This could be got by negotiation but in the temper of today, no one can begin to get anything like this.  And so you have a military solution for the time being, in which they will police their own boundary.  You’ll have a great exchange of population with the Greeks moving out and we’ll then just let diplomacy take over when we see the opportunity once more, to see if we can get a peaceful solution in the island.  Now as regards Greece and Turkey, it is Greece who will need massaging because the Turks are too jingoistic, indeed too close to Hitler for my liking.  All right?

Dr Kissinger: I completely agree with you, Jim.  And the tragedy is that it could have worked out that way through diplomacy …

Foreign Secretary [Callaghan]: I believe you.  Well, goodbye old man and all the best to you with your pre-occupations. …’.

(Source: PREM 16/20, National Archives of the United Kingdom, Kew Gardens, Surrey.  The author of this open letter traced the original of this document in the National Archives of the United Kingdom after spotting a reference to it in William Mallinson, Britain in Cyprus (I.B. Tauris, London, 2011), pages 67-70.  The author hereby records his gratitude to Dr Mallinson.)

Yours sincerely

Klearchos A. Kyriakides


Addendum

For the immediate attention of the Right Honourable Boris Johnson MP, Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, Foreign & Commonwealth Office, Whitehall, London

and copied to H.E. Matthew Kidd, High Commissioner of the United Kingdom, British High Commission, Alexander Pallis Street, Nicosia

OPEN LETTER

By email to: fcocorrespondence@fco.gov.uk and

Copied to: UKinCyprus@fco.gov.uk

Date: 23 June 2017

Dear Mr Johnson

Re: ‘The Search for Security via Answers to Questions on Law, Criminal Justice and Impunity’

I refer to my letter sent to you at the FCO by email on 5 January 2017.  I also refer to my subsequent letter sent by email to the Rt Hon Sir Alan Duncan MP, the Minister for Europe, at the FCO on 11 January 2017.  Notwithstanding the passage of more than five months and the promise of a ‘reply’ in each of the auto-response messages which I received by email from the FCO on 5 and 11 January 2017, I have not received the courtesy of any substantive written response from either you or the Minister for Europe.  Accordingly, the various questions I posed, via my two said letters, remain unanswered.

With the fate of the Republic of Cyprus hanging in the balance in view of the forthcoming ‘Conference on Cyprus’ on 28 June 2017, please find at the hyperlink below (and copied into the attachment) my latest publication entitled ‘The Search for Security via Answers to Questions on Law, Criminal Justice and Impunity’.  This was published by Agora Dialogue on 17 June 2017.

http://forum.agora-dialogue.com/wp-content/uploads/2017/06/K.-A.-Kyriakides-Working-Paper-for-Agora-Dialogue-as-at-17.06.17-as-amended-on-19.06.2017.pdf 

In view of the profound significance of the questions, warnings and other matters set out in the above publication, I trust, hope and expect that you will provide me with written replies to all of the various questions set out in its main body, together with written replies to the additional questions set out in Appendix 1 (at page 40 onward).  Several of these questions are adaptations of the questions I originally posed via my said letter to you of 5 January 2017. 

Please be aware that in line with my duties as an academic and as a means of promoting liberal democracy, the rule of law, justice, transparency and the public interest, I intend to publish your replies in my forthcoming publications.  Please also be aware that if I do not receive any written response to this letter by the start of the ‘Conference on Cyprus’ on 28 June 2017, I may likewise make that fact known to the public.

Accordingly, I look forward to hearing from you, as a matter of urgency. 

In the meantime, I would like to emphasise that the views expressed in my various letters and publications reflect my personal views and not those of any organisation with which I have or have had any association.

Yours sincerely

Klearchos A. Kyriakides

© Klearchos A. Kyriakides, Larnaca, June 2017

Dr Klearchos A. Kyriakides is an Assistant Professor of Law at the Cyprus Campus of the University of Central Lancashire and the Co-ordinator of its programme dedicated to the Rule of Law and the Lessons of History.  That said, all views expressed by the author in his letters, articles and other publications are personal.   

In his private capacity, the author is one of the 119 academics and other persons to have signed an open letter to the Secretary-General of the United Nations and other prominent personalities, dated 21 June 2017.  A copy of this open letter has been published by Agora Dialogue at http://forum.agora-dialogue.com/2017/06/21/cyprus-a-call-for-a-new-strategy/      

The author declares an interest as a British citizen with roots in Lysi and Petra, two ethnically-cleansed villages in the Turkish-occupied areas of the Republic of Cyprus; on a voluntary unpaid basis, he is also an independent academic consultant of Lobby for Cyprus, a non-party-political NGO based in London which campaigns on behalf of displaced persons from the Turkish-occupied area of the Republic of Cyprus. 

• The above forms part of a series of articles, open letters and other publications published by Agora Dialogue at http://forum.agora-dialogue.com/?s=Klearchos+A.+Kyriakides 

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