World mourns loss of Kofi Annan
There was an outpouring of condolences from leaders around the world on Saturday after the death of former United Nations Secretary General and Nobel Peace Prize laureate KofiAnnan.
The Turkish Foreign Ministry on Aug. 18 extended condolences on the death of Kofi Annan.
The ministry in a statement said Kofi Annan was a distinguished diplomat, who contributed a lot to world peace and received a Nobel Peace Prize.
He was also commemorated for his strong effort and plan during his time in 2004 on the Cyprus issue.
The Elders organization — a group of statesmen co-founded by Annan which speaks out on global issues – hailed him as “a voice of great authority and wisdom in public and private”.
“The world has lost an inspiring figure – but one whose achievements will never be forgotten, and whose commitment to peace and justice will endure to inspire future generations,” deputy chair Gro Harlem Brundtland said in a statement.
Divided as ever as Cyprus limps into the European Union, Greek Cypriots rejected a United Nations peace plan on Saturday that would have reunited the Turkish and Greek sides of the island, while Turkish Cypriots approved it.
Three of four Greek Cypriots rejected the plan put forward by Secretary General Kofi Annan that would have allowed tens of thousands of Cypriots to return to homes they lost in 1974 when Turkish troops occupied the northern third of the island in response to an attempt by Greece to annex the entire island.
In contrast, about 65 percent of Turkish Cypriots approved the United Nations plan in the hopes of ending their international isolation and shaking off the effects of a 30-year economic embargo.
The Mediterranean island is only 35 miles from Turkey’s coastline, closer than it is to Greece. It has twice in the past half-century brought Greece and Turkey, ancient rivals and NATO allies, to the brink of war. The prime ministers of both countries, as well as the United States and the European Union, had supported the reunification plan, and said their improved relations would not be affected by the outcome of the Cyprus vote.
But without an endorsement from both Cypriot sides, which voted in separate referendums, the peace plan is effectively dead. Both Mr. Annan and Secretary of State Colin L. Powell have warned the Cypriots that no other settlement effort is on the horizon.