Plans aimed at reopening the abandoned town of Varosha (Maraş) in Turkish Cyprus are on the right track, Kudret Özersay, the country’s foreign minister, said in a written statement, the Hürriyet Daily News reported.
Given recent developments and with Turkey’s support, Varosha could be opened to its former residents under Turkish Cypriot administration following the presidential election scheduled for Oct. 11, Özersay said.
“Both the Greek Cypriot side and other international players understand that as long as we proceed carefully, our plans for Varosha will come to fruition,” Özersay said, adding that property rights will be respected.
“When I put forward my vision of opening the fenced-off town of Varosha under Turkish Cypriot administration six years ago, there were people who laughed at it. Many actors and the Turkish Cypriot public now have started to support this policy,” he said.
Varosha was a famous resort region in Cyprus that boasted a capacity of 10,000 beds across more than 100 hotels; however, it has been closed since 1974.
The city is protected by a 1984 UN Security Council resolution stating that the empty town can only be resettled by its original inhabitants.