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Volume 699: debated on Wednesday 12 March 2008

asked Her Majesty's Government:

Whether, in the light of the declaration of independence of Kosovo, they will review the right to self-determination of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus; and whether their position on any such right is affected by the practicalities of retaining military bases in the south of Cyprus. [HL2072]

The independence of Kosovo does not set a precedent. There is no universal blueprint that can be applied to every post-conflict scenario; each is unique and different criteria apply. We should give no comfort to those looking to exploit Kosovo in relation to unrelated agendas, either in the Balkans or further afield.

Our long-standing policy on the non-recognition of the so-called “Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus” will not change. Our objective in Cyprus is to achieve a comprehensive and viable settlement, based on a bizonal, bicommunal federation with political equality. We welcome the continued commitment of the leaders of both sides to these basic principles. Our continued support for a settlement is not affected by the presence of the sovereign base areas.