Ed Miliband

TO: The leader of the Labour Party Ed Milliband and All Labour Members of Parliament

Dear Mr Miliband,

Re: The Right Hon Jack Straw’s recent comments in the British media, on Cyprus

Perhaps I should express my gratitude to Mr Straw for finally coming clean and telling us some home truths about the foreign policy of the Labour governments that he was a minister of and his own position on Cyprus.

Mr Straw made it clear in a BBC Radio 4 interview(8/11/10) and in the Times article (titled No ifs or buts, Turkey must be part of the EU; Cyprus is just an excuse for those who cannot stomach the accession of a Muslim country 8/11/10) that small countries are an irrelevance in the new world order; that weaker or numerically small people, have no human or legal rights; International bullies and invaders who are alleged ‘allies’ of the British and Americans must be rewarded and be accorded special and favourable treatment.  Thankfully, he did not echo George Bush’s boasts that torture of prisoners saves lives!

The fact that a former Foreign Minister repeated, in the space of a few days, such unfounded allegations and used historically false statements to justify a ludicrous call to ‘partition’ a European country so as not to upset Turkey, it is absolutely extraordinary. Is he simply trying to seek some attention or is he exposing a British Foreign policy that had a big hand in the troubles of Cyprus in the first place and one that now wishes to finish the job in an effort to appease a regional bully, Turkey and drag it into the EU, even though this may bring about the collapse of the Union?

It does not matter how many times I listen to the radio interview or I read the Times article, I cannot help feeling that his was not a coincidental intervention, but a more sinister plan to bully and blackmail the President of the Republic of Cyprus to completely capitulate to the outrageous demands – I will not even attempt to list in this letter- of an invader, Turkey, because it (Turkey) is an important and powerful ally. Cyprus and its people are too small to matter and to have any rights, in Straw’s eyes.

For the sake of the Cypriot people and for all those smaller nations that are fighting for their rights in a world dominated by powerful bullies, I hope that President Christofias does not give in to such tactics and disgraceful behaviour, during the negotiations in New York, that have started on 18 November.

The final question that I would like to ask the new Labour leader is whether he is going to follow the same policies which caused thousands of loyal British Cypriot Labour voters walk away from the party that they once trusted?

I look forward to your comments

Yours Sincerely

George Christou

On behalf of the Committee

Note: Ayios Amvrosios Association is a UK based refugee organization, whose members are British Cypriots originating from the town of Ayios Amvrosios, 20 km east of Kyrenia. The pre – invasion population of the town was around 2,000, all of whom were forcibly removed by the Turkish military in the wake of the 1974 invasion and subsequently replaced by colonists from Turkey and the Balkans.