As a consequence of the tragedy brought about by the first and
second rounds of the Turkish invasion on 20 July and 15 August
1974, about 200.000 Greek Cypriots, who lived in the areas occupied
by the Turkish troops, were compelled by force to leave their homes
and properties and move to the free areas. They became refugees in
their own land.
However, despite the policy of terror implemented by Turkish
troops, the hardships, oppressions, inlimidations and threats,
about 12.300 people refused to leave their homes in the area
occupied by the invaders and tried to keep their possessions -
their land, their homes and their property. Since then, these
people have been known as the enclaved and their plight has been
one of the most tragic aspects of the Cyprus problem.
Immediately after the end of the hostilities in 1974, the enclaved
were about 12.300 people, most of them Greek Cypriots and a few
Maronites. They were mainly concentrated in the Karpass peninsula
and particularly in the villages of Rizokarpasso, Agia Trias, Leon-
arisso, Agios Andronikos, Agios Therissos, Trikomo, Karpaseia,
Kormakitis, Asomatos, in the town of Keryneia and in Apostolos
In 1994, only 715 enclaved (520 Greek Cypriots and 195 Maronite
Cypriots), the vast majority of whom are above 60 years old, remain
in the occupied areas. It is to be noted that since 30 June 1994
there are no longer any enclaved in Trikomo.The sharp reduction in
their number was due to the systematic expulsions organized by the
illegal authorities together with their policy of harassment
. All these combined with a well planned project
of colonization of the occupied parts of Cyprus, with the influx of
about 85.000 Turkish mainland settlers, aimed at changing the
demographic character of the island.
The table below shows the occupied areas where the enclaved live
and the number in each area as it was on 30.6.1994.
|VILLAGE OR TOWN||POPULATION|
|9||APOSTOLOS ANDREAS MONASTERY||4|
Table showing the limited number of enclaved pupils and teachers in
three elementary schools that continue to function in the occupied areas
|VILLAGE/PRIMARY SCHOOL||SCHOOL YEAR 1994/95||TEACHERS|
The methods of the Turkish leadership include a wide variety of
inhuman acts, ranging from physical violence to psychological bru-
tality, so as to force the inhabitants of the various villages to
sign ''applications'l to move to the government-controlled areas.
This was intended to enable them to carry on expelling the enclaved
under the pretext that the Greek Cypriots "move on their own free
will" after submitting applications and that "although not encour-
aged to stay, they are not forcibly expelled".
The expulsions, which are part of Turkey's policy of ethnic
cleansing directed against the Greek Cypriots, were intensified
between 1975-77 while the talks were still going on and despite of
the Third Vienna Agreement, and continued later on, in 1981. The
year in which the expulsions intensified was in 1976, leading to a
reduction of 57% in the population of the enclaved.
|END OF YEAR||POPULATION||REDUCTION OF ENCLAVED|
*NOTE:Number of enclaved on 30.6.1994
What has urged these people to remain on their land of their own
free will despite the hardships they have endured?
Above all it was their great love of their places of origin, of
their homes and of their property with which they have become
closely linked due to their hard labour.
Another factor which contributed to this, was the expectation for
a quick solution to the Cyprus problem and the strong belief that
justice would prevail, thanks to the intervention of the
Finally, the fear of becoming refugees and the uncertainty they
would face, if they abandoned their property, also provided another
incentive for staying.
The Cyprus government has assisted them by offering monthly
subsidies for food through UNFICYP. On 5 August 1994 they also
received an allowance to repair their houses.
In addition to the government, individuals, and in particular,
elementary school teachers, priests and nuns, have all actively and
tirelessly contributed to the welfare of the enclaved, despite
repeated threats against their lives by the illegal regime.
The Third Vienna Agreement
In 1975 an agreement was concluded between the intercommunal
negotiators, Glafcos Clerides (the present President of the
Republic) and the Turkish Cypriot leader, Rauf Denktash, regarding
the Greek Cypriots living in the occupied areas and the Turkish
Cypriots living in the government controlled areas.
The major provisions of this agreement, known as the Third Vienna
Agreement, according to a press communique issued on 4 August 1975,
are the following:
1. The Turkish Cypriots at present in the south of the island will
be allowed if they want to do so, to proceed north with their
belongings under an organized programme and with the assistance of
2. Mr Denktash reaffirmed and it was agreed "that the Greek
Cypriots in the north of the island are free to stay and that they
will be given every help to lead a normal life, including
facilities for education and for the practice of their religion, as
well as medical care by their own doctors and freedom of movement
in the north. "
3. The Greek Cypriots at present in the north who, at their own
request and without having been subjected to any kind of pressure,
wish to move to the south will be free to do so.
4. UNFICYP will have free and normal access to Greek Cypriot
villages and habitations in the north.
5. In connection with the implementation of the above agreement,
priority will be given to the reunification of families, which may
also involve the transfer of a number of Greek Cypriots, at present
in the south, to the north.
Has this Agreement ever been implemented ?
The Cyprus government implemented the part of the agreement
regarding the Turkish Cypriots; consequently, all Turkish Cypriots,
except a few living in the areas controlled by the State, were
transferred to the occupied areas according to the provisions of
It must be noted, however, that the vast majority of them did not
leave on their own free will but were forced to move to the
occupied areas through the use of various brutal acts perpetrated by
TMT, the illegal terrorist organization of the Denktash regime. The
touching scenes of parting with neighbors, which took place then,
constitute a real proof that Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots
None of the provisions of the agreement regarding the Greek
Cypriots living in the occupied areas, was ever implemented by the
Denktash regime. The Turkish Cypriot leader, Rauf Denktash, not
only failed to honour his signature by implementing the agreement
he signed, but he repeatedly violated all its provisions.
In their persistent attempt to take advantage of the de facto
situation and divide the island by changing its demographic
character, Turkey and the Turkish Cypriot regime have implemented
a series of well-planned coercive and suppressive measures, imposed
on the Greek Cypriot enclaved, in order to throw them out of their
homes and properties.
Blatant violations of human rights confirmed by objective reports
A confidential UN report condemns Turkish Cypriot "authorities"
for the systematic abuse of the human rights of the enclaved Greek
Cypriots, who remained in the occupied area following the 1974
The report, prepared in April 1994, documents in detail the
pressures brought to bear on the 12.300 Greek Cypriots who remained in
the Karpass Peninsula following the 1974 invasion. These ranged
from restrictions on travel, the right to own property, freedom of
movement and discrimination in education, health care and religion.
The outcome of the afore-mentioned is that only 570 Greek Cypriots
remain in the Karpass today. In a condemnation of Turkey and of the
Turkish Cypriot leadership, the report concludes: " the Greek
Cypriots of Karpass are now a small minority in a part of Cyprus,
which was once almost totally Greek Cypriot, and they are subject
to a system whose long-term aim appears to be directed towards the
eventual extinction of the Greek Cypriot community in Karpass."
The report, which was sent to the UN Secretary General in April,
documents what amounts to an open breach of the 1975 Vienna
Agreement, under which the Turkish Cypriot side agreed to protect
the interests of the enclaved. It also acknowledges that the UN
peace-keeping mission has been "frustrated, hampered and limited"
in its efforts to implement and monitor the Vienna Agreement.
"This is the result of a deliberate policy on the part of the
'northern' authorities. That policy is based primarily on
restricting UNFICYP's freedom of movement and access to the Greek
Cypriot community and is contrary to the Vienna Agreement", the
Report of ASME-HUMANITAS
The H. Struebig/A. Krieg delegation of the German humanitarian
organization ASME-HUMANITAS, which visited Cyprus in April 1976,
had instructions to investigate violations of humanitarian
provisions. They had the opportunity to visit the Turkish occupied
part of Cyprus and to talk to the authorities responsible for the
Turkish Cypriot community.
After Mr Denktash's protests, the delegation continued its
investigations and completed the final report in 1977. According to
"... b) the population in the north faces great difficulties
because of lack of security for their lives and property.
c) The conditions of life of the Greek Cypriots in the north are
particularly oppressive as they are deprived of their basic human
rights. We established these facts by visiting the Karpass area and
talking to many persons on May 3rd 1977. In particular:
ca-they are deprived of the freedom of movement and trade.
cb-They live under permanent fear for their life and property
because of continuous harassment by the mainland Turks and lack of
cc-They are deprived of secondary education and of sufficient
elementary school facilities.
cd-They are deprived of proper medical services.
ce-They are not allowed to look after their fields freely and in
many cases not even at all.
cf-Homes and other properties are often the object of theft and
the people are being beaten and generally inhumanely treated.
The problems of the population in the north are becoming greater
because of the attitude of the mainland Turks who have settled
there in thousands. We received many complaints of many crimes and
atrocities committed by the mainland Turks against the population
of the north, both Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots without
Council of Europe
- Various violations of human rights are denounced in the report dated 10 July 1976 and further confirmed by the European Commission of the Council of Europe report, dated 9 October 1983 and in particular:
- Council of Europe rapporteur on the demographic structure of the
Cypriot communities, Mr CUCO, denounces this situation in his
report dated 27 April 1992: "I drew a preliminary conclusion from
my talks with all the parties concerned: the establishment of
Turkish settlers in the northern part of the island is an indisputable
fact. The presence and naturalization of the settlers undoubtedly
constitutes a further barrier to a peaceful negotiated solution of
the Cyprus conflict."
The report was adopted by the Assembly on 7 October 1992.
European Ministers of Education
On 28 September 1994, the European Ministers of Education
expressed concern about the difficult circumstances under which
schools operate in the occupied areas of Cyprus. Their views were
included in reply letters sent to Cypriot Minister of Education and
Culture, Claire Angelidou, who appealed for their intervention to
persuade Turkey to allow schools to operate in more humane and safe
Foreign press reports
Dozens of articles were written in the foreign press about the
inhumane living conditions the enclaved are suffering in the occupied
areas. We mention only a few of them:
The Su11day Times, 6 November 1977
In an article dated 6/11/1977, the English newspaper The Sunday
Times reports the following: "accounts of a widow's murder and of
another alleged murder and an attempted murder have been revealed
by refugees. Greek Cypriots say the murder was only the latest in
a series of incidents in the township of Rizokarpaso, in the
isolated north eastern tip of the divided island, aimed at
terrorizing the township's remaining Greeks into fleeing south and
leaving their property for the Turks. The Cyprus government has
asked the United Nations peacekeeping force to investigate all
three 'but the Turks don't allow us to investigate', said a U.N.
Die Weltzeloche, 30 August 1978
In a report published on 30/8/1978 in the German-language Swiss
newspaper, Die Weltwoche, Peter Schmid, who visited the occupied
part of Cyprus as a guest of the Denktash regime, describes the
experience he had during a visit to Rizokarpaso, which reveals the
state of terror under which the enclaved live. 'l ordered a drink
at the Greek tavern and when the proprietor brought it, l followed
him into the kitchen to talk to him in private. The grey-haired man
avoided my eyes and evaded every question. 'Speak freely,' I urged
him. 'That would be the end', he whispered.
Outside, in a covered market place, l found that several hundred
Greeks, mainly wrinkled old people had gathered together. When
their clothing is distributed, their names are called out and the
items of charity are thrown to the recipient."
Milliyet, 8-14 January 1979
A Turkish journalist, Refik Erduran, confirms that the enclaved
live under inhuman conditions and speaks of the need to rectify
this situation, as it would serve Turkish propaganda. In a series
of seven articles on the Cyprus problem, published in the Instanbul
daily Milliyet (8-14/1/79) he writes that the Cyprus government
"repairs and maintains even the empty Turkish Cypriot houses. It
also makes sure that the foreigners on the island observe this
fact. But the money spent is well worth the positive impression it
We too had a trump card we could use in the same way. We could
ensure that the handful of Greek Cypriots who remain in the Karpass
peninsula could achieve a higher standard of living than the one
they enjoyed before. We could meet their educational,
transportation and health needs; we could prevent any settler from
moving into their villages, we could make sure that they would not
feel uncomfortable in any way, we could provide them with credits
and agricultural aid. We could almost force them to live better.
We could do all this at a cost of 5 to 10 million Turkish liras
and the region would pay this money back in produce in a few years.
Then we could exhibit this showcase to the whole world.
But we did not do any of these things. Our inadequacy in
propaganda springs not from lack of words but from our inability to
make proper use of such opportunities."
24 Hellres, 3 June 1980
Having visited Cyprus in 1980, Gilberate Favre of the French-language
Swiss newspaper 24 Heures, reported the following:
"The number of Greek Cypriot refugees is not about to diminish for
nearly everyday, Cypriots enclaved in the Karpass region, in the
Famagusta district, are expelled by the Turkish army.
A quarter of an hour to leave everything
According to refugees' testimonies, the methods of intimidation of
the Turkish army are diverse. First of all, there is the daily war
of humiliations and 'punishments' to give an example of them. There
is also an attempt to give this policy of expulsion an aspect of
legality although, in actual fact, it is contrary to the Charter of
'I was given a quarter of an hour to leave my house and my
village', a refugee says. 'Turkish soldiers made me sign a
statement according to which I wanted to leave my village. Then
they took me to the U.N. zone and showed my statement to U.N.
... Nodding his head saddly, an old man, who has lived under
Turkish occupation for four years, tells me that he was willing to
put up with almost anything in order to remain in his house and in
his ancestral village."
A few illustrations of the blatant violations of human rights
In order to eliminate the Greek Cypriot element from the occupied
areas, completely isolate the two communities of the island and
allege that co-existence is "unrealistic", a most reprehensible
policy was conceived, i.e a combination of the brutal separation of
families with the systematic colonization of the occupied areas.
There is a continuous influx of thousands of Turkish settlers from
Anatolia, who do not only change the demographic structure of the
island but also harass both Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots
living in the occupied areas.
The mainland settlers, estimated presently at about 85.000, were
used as a lever of pressure on the enclaved so as to force them to
abandon their homes. Most of the crimes committed by Turkish
mainland settlers against Greek Cypriot enclaved, were intended to
terrorize them further, so as to leave their land and properties
which were subsequently distributed amongst the mainland settlers.
Threats constitute another measure of psychological pressure. Some
of the threats used to ''persuade'l the Greek Cypriots to sign
applications are the following: "If you do not sign, you will join
the ranks of the missing", if you do not sign, you will in any case
be removed from your home and be taken to another area," "if you do
not sign, you will in any case be evicted, but without any of your
In order to realize the full extent of the violations of human
rights in the case of the enclaved, the following are some
illustrations of the inhumanities perpetrated against the Greek
Cypriots in the Turkish occupied area. It is to be noted that this
is not a comprehensive list.
Separation of families. The vast majority of Greek Cypriot prisoners of war were released in the areas controlled by the Government of the Republic of Cyprus and were never allowed to be reunited with their wives and children as should be the case according to the provisions of the Vienna Agreement.
In addition, most children were obliged to leave their homes in
order to go to secondary school. In both cases, families were
either brutally separated or obliged to move to the south so as to
lead a normal family life again.
Children under sixteen are allowed to visit their parents during
the Christmas and Easter holidays, but always at the discretion of
the occupying regime. Many has been the time when the children
ready to take the bus, have been turned back.
Another form of pressure is the refusal of the Turkish Cypriot
regime to allow any replacements of teachers, who were forced to
leave the occupied areas. Today there are only four teachers left.
They are obliged to face the threats of the illegal regime on a
daily basis and they have to make enormous efforts and undergo many
sacrifices in order to keep the three elementary schools in
operation. In the two elementary schools for Greek Cypriots, the very
few pupils are not allowed to be taught history, religion and
geography of Cyprus. Despite the fact that the Ministry of
Education sends the textbooks on time, in July, these are kept and
"checked" by the Denktash regime which delivers them around the end
of November or at the beginning of December or it may choose not to
deliver them at all.
Murders. There is a long list of murders of helpless people, mostly the elderly. Incidents of murders were reported with dates and specific details by people who were once enclaved. In most cases, they have been confirmed by foreign press reports. Such characteristic cases are the ones of Demetris Demetri and Flourentza Flourou from Rizokarpaso, who were both robbed, stabbed, cut into pieces and eventually burnt by mainland settlers in May 1990. Even in the case of such incidents, the so-called ''police' of the Denktash regime has taken no measures to protect the enclaved and never has any offender been arrested or punished.
Rapes and threatened rapes. A flagrant case of rape was that of a fourteen year old girl who, on 3/10/76 was raped in the presence of her father, who was at the same time assaulted, beaten up and robbed.
Savage beatings. Greek Cypriot men of all ages are savagely beaten up and then asked to sign applications to leave, under some pretext or another, and frequently without a pretext. This is a daily occurrence in all occupied Greek Cypriot villages.
Detention and ill treatment. Greek Cypriot men are arrested and detained for a number of days, without reason, ill treated and then asked to sign applications in order to leave.
Plundering of movable and immovable property. Enclaved Greek Cypriots, who were not able to prove, by producing titledeeds, that the houses in which they lived belonged to them (either because they lost the title-deeds or because the houses belonged to their children or parents) were forcibly driven out and were obliged to live in barracks or with relatives. Their houses were subsequently seized by the Turkish Cypriot administration.
On many occasions, property owned by the enclaved was confiscated
and given to settlers from mainland Turkey. The property, which had
not officially been confiscated by the Denktash regime, was either
plundered by mainland settlers or included in the military
"restricted areas" or, was out-of-bounds to the enclaved.
In addition, the enclaved were never certain that they would ever
enjoy any income from their labour. In many cases, mainland set-
tlers would harvest the fields sown by the Greek Cypriots, the
lawful owners of those fields.
Burglaries. This is a routine event, from which no home escapes. Even the elderly, as well as the invalided are not spared. With a view to terrorizing the enclaved, masked men raid the houses of the enclaved Greek Cypriots during the night, whom they beat up, sometimes to death.
Another method widely adopted to terrorize the Greek Cypriots,
includes knocking on doors during the night, throwing stones at
houses and firing shots in the air.
No freedom of movement. No Greek Cypriot in the Turkish occupied area has ever been granted anything remotely resembling freedom of movement. They are all strictly confined to the precincts of their villages and are subjected to strict curfews. The enclaved are not allowed to visit the nearby villages without "police" supervision, unless they report to the "police" on the purpose of their visit beforehand.
All men between the ages of 18 and 50 must report to the
police once a week. Even today the enclaved are not allowed to
visit the free areas unless they have submitted an application.
Such applications must be submitted two weeks in advance and time
limitations are imposed on their stay in the government controlled
area. Many are the times the Denktash regime has denied them
permission to visit the area controlled by the government of
Cyprus. As a result, the Greek Cypriot enclaved can never be sure
when they will be able to do so.
The steps taken to isolate and restrict the movement of the Greek
Cypriots have been intensified as the years passed. As a result,
the enclaved are not even allowed to go out in the fields near
their villages without the permission of the Turkish Cypriot
Ipolicel As for the visits to nearby villages or to the town of
Ammochostos they are very rare indeed. When they occur, they always
take place under the supervision of the Turkish Cypriot "police".
No communication. The Greek Cypriot enclaved are always forbidden to come into contact with any visitors unless the so called lipolicemenil of the Denktash regime are present Even direct contact with UNFICYP soldiers, whose movement is seriously limited, is not allowed without the presence of "policemen". When food is distributed by the United Nations,"policemen" are present in order to prevent any free conversation between the enclaved and U.N. soldiers. Moreover, communication between the enclaved and their relatives in the free areas is virtually impossible as there is not a single telephone in the villages inhabited by the enclaved Correspondence with their relatives is only allowed through the United Nahons but mail is checked by the "police" of the Denktash regime
No medical care. The provision of the Third Vienna Agreement concerning medical care was never implemented. No Greek Cypriot doctors were ever allowed to settle in the area or to visit the enclaved on a regular basis. The Denktash regime refuses to give permission to the enclaved to visit the free areas for medical care. There have been, for example, incidents in which the enclaved were forced to leave their houses and land and move to the free areas because of health problems and the lack of adequate medical care in the occupied areas. Following their recovery and when they wish to return to their houses the Denktash regime refuses to allow them back.
Restriction of trade. The shepherds are restricted to grazing their flocks only a short distance outside their village. They use old abandoned houses in the villages as sheepfolds in order to try to prevent animal robberies by the mainland settlers.
Moreover, Turkish settlers take their sheep into the cultivated
fields, thus, destroying the crops.
Fishermen are no longer allowed to fish and their boats have been
mostly stolen by the Turks.
Moreover, according to witnesses, Turkish settlers used to buy
their groceries on credit from shops owned by Greek Cypriots but
never payed for them. Every kind of commercial and economic deal
between enclaved Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots is prohibited
"by law". Anybody caught violating this ban is arrested and brought
before Turkish Cypriot courts which impose heavy fines. The object
of this measure is to impose such financial constraints on the
enclaved so as to force them to request their transfer to the free
Apart from farming restrictions, their ability to earn a living
is further limited by their being forced to sell their produce at
ridiculously low prices.
Religious intolerance. The enclaved Greek Cypriots are unable to practice their religion freely. They are not allowed to attend church services and it is forbidden for the church bells to toll. Besides, it must be noted that most churches have been desecrated. In 1994, there were only two priests in the occupied areas.
House searches. Turkish "police" search Greek Cypriot houses requesting ownership documents for items such as cookers,heaters and radios etc. Any items for which no such documents can be produced, are confiscated.
19 years after the signing of the Vienna Agreement...
Almost two decades after the signing of the Agreement, Greek
Cypriot enclaved, whose population has dramatically shrunk to a
point threatening their future existence there, continue to live in
appalling and unacceptable conditions.
Do the enclaved have a future?
Concluding, it is obvious that the enclaved face an extremely
serious danger. Unless practical measures are implemented, they are
condemned to annihilation as their existence is being seriously
The role of the international community
Only the international community can urge Turkey to comply with
international law and finally, fully implement the Third Vienna
Agreement in the form of a temporary measure until a final and just
solution of the Cyprus problem is reached.
In this respect, the international community should, above all,
become aware of the tragedy and calamities of the enclaved, and
consequently safeguard the right of these people to remain in their
ancestral land in conditions of safety and dignity.
A humanitarian issue
It should be understood that as this is obviously a humanitarian
issue, a special and separate aspect from the political aspects of
the Cyprus problem and an issue of violation of human rights, the
implementation of the Third Vienna Agreement is a matter of ethics
and of principle. If not rectified, Turkey's unacceptable conduct
might prove to be a dangerous precedent for some unscrupulous
leaders, who will certainly not hesitate to imitate such a conduct
because of the international community's tolerance.
A test case for Turkish good will
The respect of the human rights of the enclaved on the part of the
Turkish side is a test case for Turkish credibility for any future
agreement. The intransigence of the Turkish side in the case of
this humanitarian issue leads to justifiable queries: I'How can the
Greek Cypriots trust any future agreement when the existing
agreement on the enclaved has been so blatantly violated?"
Finally, the role of the enclaved in the success of any future
settlement of the Cyprus issue and in the creation of confidence
between the two communities is underestimated.
This handful of people could be the link between them, they could
be the bridge between the occupied areas and the free areas and the
proof (contrary to the allegations of advocates in favor of the
partition of the island) that the two communities can and must
co-exist in order to build together a brilliant future for a single
and sovereign Republic of Cyprus.
RETURN TO THE CYPRUS PROBLEM HOMEPAGE
RETURN TO THE CYPRUS PANEL HOMEPAGE