4 DECEMBER 1982, Page 18

Greeks and Turks

Sir: A few weeks ago I visited the site of a mass grave in the Turkish Cypriot zone of Cyprus, containing the bodies of victims whose ages ranged from eight months to 80. This appalling discovery had been made by the UN in the wake of the 1974 distur- bances which led to Turkish intervention. Virtually the entire population of a Turkish Cypriot community had been wiped out by their Greek Cypriot neighbours, in a frenzy of hate which hardly matches the remarkable belief in latent desire for co- existence among Cypriots, expressed by Mr Soteris Georgallis in his letter to you (20 November).

The recent history of Cyprus is well known (though Mr Georgallis has a very selective view of it): less well amplified is the fact that Cyprus rested under Turkish rule for these centuries, without masstre50 and pogroms. The Turks have alwaYs Ted the minority in Cyprus, yet never hatc"4 the equivalent of Grivas and EOKA to sy;',e union with Turkey for all or part of t; island. Neither did Ankara supPlaat elected government with a puppet subsea vant to its own interests. Even acto declaration of UDI by the Ttjil Federated State which, de facto, rales,he the north, is strongly discouraged bY • Turkish government. The desire for union with Greece is as powerful as ever among Greek CYPri°ts. in is still encouraged by the governMent Athens, which at the moment is aiding 5. economic blockade of northern CYPI*,/j, The Turks, who have better memories 27-50 Mr Georgallis, remember how Crete — once a Turkish possession -- was inc°, 1(15 porated into 'Greater Greece'. The Tl!he were simply rounded up and shipped t.,41 island, at least a kinder fate than that will" h e befell the unfortunate villagers described above. Since indepenue7 at Greek policy has always been directeo.ly achieving maximum security against by the acquisition of maximum territ°", The presence of any Turks is taken ; representing a threat to that PolicYl„d Cyprus, the eastern expansion ofGrr,ie failed, and of course must fail. Views 011

kind expressed by Mr Georgallis can


serve to preserve the impression that C;

will remain a barrier to a détente bels Greece and Turkey, which wise coat, suggest to be the only sensible Mahler' nean policy for Greece to follow now'