Robin’s Snippets – part 2

Tit for tat!
As a result of the tensions created by, amongst other things the Gaza Flotilla, Turkey has excluded Israel from the current air sea rescue practice operations “Caner Gönyeli-2010“ currently taking place in the eastern Mediterranean. Of the initial 56 invited participants, 34 as observers and 22 as participants only seven countries are actually taking active part in the proceedings. After the forced boarding of the ship Mavi Marmara by Israeli Special Forces the invitation to Israel was withdrawn. The unexpected participation of Iran at the last minute probably had to do with Turkey’s no vote to the sanctions against Iran. The Caner Gönyeli-2010 exercise takes place between 14th and 17th June on the territory of and in the territorial waters of the TRNC.

Another cake-walk for some
The UN Security Council has approved another 6 month stint for the “blue helmets” UNFICYP. Turkey was the only permanent member of the Security Council to vote against the motion. Praises were made for the progress being made in the peace and reunification process.

Robin: What bloody planet are the on?

Furthermore the Security Council added they would welcome a quick, just and final settlement to the Cyprus problem. The Turkish ambassador, Ertugrul Apakan criticised the process as being discriminatory against the TRNC as only the voice of the Greek dominated south was being considered. Since 1963 there has been no ‘partnership’ and hence no constitutional government on the island to represent the whole of the island’s population. The Greek Cypriot administration sees itself as the only voice of the people of Cyprus and has for the last 46 years hindered the rights of expression of the Cypriot Turkish minority and hence a lasting solution to the problem.

Robin: Who withdrew from active political and public service in 1963? Who retreated to barricaded enclaves? I must be getting old. Wasn’t it the Turkish Cypriots at the behest (putting it nicely) of the TMT?

Editor: and who cancelled the Cyprus Constitution, an act which caused the TCs to withdraw?

Hard cheese or sour Grapes?
There’s a type of cheese on the island that has been the heart of many squabbles between north and south (as if they didn’t have more serious things to disagree about.) The Famous Halloumi (South) or Hellim (North). Irrespective of how you name it, it is regarded as one of the specialities of the island, where it is reported to have been produced for the best part of 2,000 years. In the last few years the argument warmed up as the Southerner’s registered the name and regional rights with the EU Halloumi cheese can only be made in Cyprus. I’m not sure why they didn’t try to patent the stuff so the north can only sell it as Hellim not Halloumi. So where’s this all going you may justifiably ask?

A recent study by scientists at the Eastern Mediterranean University (DAU) by Dr Necdet Osam shows that in all probability the cheese is neither Greek, Turkish nor Cypriot in origin. In all probability it was Ptolomaen or Arab traders that bought the cheese to these shores.

Robin: Does that negate the Greek Cypriot claim to EU regional speciality food? It’s a bit like finding out that Melton Mowbray pork pies originated in Outer Mongolia. Or Frankfurter sausages were really from Algeria. Cultural heritage?

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