Cyprus

Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs written question – answered on 5th April 2005.

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Photo of Roger Gale Roger Gale Conservative, North Thanet

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs how many properties builton occupied and misappropriated Greek Cypriot owned land in the northern part of the island of Cyprus have been purchased by citizens of the United Kingdom.

Photo of Denis MacShane Denis MacShane Minister of State (Europe), Foreign & Commonwealth Office

The Government does not have access to that information. It is a matter for private individuals, acting upon appropriately qualified legal advice.

However, I welcome this opportunity to give further publicity to the relevant advice on our website (www.fco.gov.uk), to the effect that:

Before purchasing property anywhere in Cyprus you are strongly advised to seek independent qualified legal advice.

Property issues are closely linked to the political situation. The non-recognition of the 'Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus' and the possibility of a future political settlement in Cyprus could have significant practical or financial implications for those considering buying property in the north. There is also a risk that purchasers would face legal proceedings in the courts of the Republic of Cyprus. Separately, there are specific rules for foreigners purchasing property in the north and you should ensure you are fully aware of these."

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Annotations

Donald Crawford
Posted on 7 Apr 2005 5:50 pm (Report this annotation)

The question is dishonestly slanted. Turkish Cypriot land in the south has been expropriated, and there now many known cases of their land having been sold to private developers. To cite one side, while implying that only the north has ‘misappropriated’ — itself a slanted term — misleads and is intended to mislead.

As for the answer, it is a pity that the FCO has fallen for Greek Cypriot propaganda when it now cites the legal risk of being taken to court in the south. There is one case only, which has not been finally decided, and which would be thrown out, and will be thrown out, if it ever gets into a UK forum. The FCO knows that the aim is propaganda, but why on earth is it so weakly being party to that?