Turkish Cypriots children of mixed marriages protest in south Cyprus, demand the right to citizenship

Turkish Cypriots, who were born from mixed marriages and are unable to obtain citizenship of the Republic of Cyprus, held a protest march in South Cyprus on Saturday.

Activists met with the Cyprus Representative of the European Parliament and presented the letter they had prepared.

They later marched to the Greek Ministry of Interior and read the press release in Turkish, Greek and English.

In the press release with the headline “Unidentified People”, it was stated that Turkish Cypriots are systematically exposed to racism and discrimination stemming from mixed marriages.

In the statement, it was said that citizenship of the Republic of Cyprus is also important in terms of family integrity.

Children born from mixed marriages are not given citizenship arbitrarily and illegally. “However, we have the right to obtain legal citizenship because either mother or father is a citizen“, the statement said.

The statement went on to say that a modern state has to act according to the principle of equality before the law. The Greek Cypriot authorities were accused of racism. Turkish Cypriots were suffering discrimination as were the children of Greek Cypriots who were married to an Asian or African person.

Additionally, young people who could not acquire citizenship, lose their right to education in universities in Europe that had granted them a place because of this illegal and discriminatory act.

We emphasise that as we continue our fight through legal and judicial means through our lawyers, we will bring the issue to the street, to international platforms and to the Court of Human Rights from now on. We warn the Greek Cypriot government to immediately abandon this inhumane practice”, the statement concluded.

In an article published in June 2018, Kibris Postasi quoted Greek Cypriot daily ‘Phileleftheros’ which wrote that expert opinions clearly stated that the situation of children born from mixed marriages in Northern Cyprus is not based on the same category as children born from mixed marriages in Southern Cyprus (one of the parents is Cypriot and the other is foreign).

Kibris Postasi, LGC news

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