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'Uncouth settlers should be sent back to Turkey'.

Archbishop Chrysostomos said on Tuesday that "uncouth" Turkish settlers should be sent back to Turkey in the event of a solution because they were here to change the island's demographic composition.

Interviewed on a morning news show on the state broadcaster, the Archbishop said he was not being racist.

They "are Anatolians, uncouth, they will never become European, not even in a 100 years, and if they stay here they will spawn a dozen children per family; where are we going to go?"

The Church primate was commenting on a possible settlement of the island's division and the number of Turkish settlers who would be allowed to stay.

He suggested that President Nicos Anastasiades had agreed to allow some 300,000 to remain after a solution, something he was against.

Asked by the reporter how he knew the figure and if he thought his comments would be deemed racist, the archbishop said the settlers, even without citizenship, would remain as workers.

"We must look at why they arrived," he added. "They came to alter the demographic composition of our people. They didn't come to work like the Sri Lankans, Thais, Arabs, and so on.

"I don't think this is racism."

Chrysostomos said they agreed that Turkish nationals married to Turkish Cypriots could stay after a solution; "fortunately, the Turkish Cypriots don't like settlers and the marriages are not many," he said, adding that that was the reason he wasn't bothered if they stayed.

"But the others must leave so that Ankara's objective would not be achieved," he said.

The archbishop, who is always asked for his views on everything, including the economy, blamed Turkey for the impasse in the talks.

"We are never going to reach the end because Turkey wants everything. Nothing satisfies it," he said.

He said it was better not to have a deal if things would be worse than the current status quo.

"A solution must at least be functional," he said

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Publication:Cyprus Mail (Cyprus)
Date:May 16, 2017
Words:353
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