ANKARA - Turkey's EU Minister Egemen Bagis said on Wednesday that EU candidate Turkey might freeze relations with the European Union if Cyprus assumed the EU presidency in July 2012 without a solution to the divided island.
Cyprus has been divided since a Turkish invasion in 1974 triggered by a brief Greek-inspired coup. UN-sponsored peace talks between Turkish Cypriots and Greek Cypriots have stumbled since they were relaunched in 2008.
"Freezing ties is an option," Bagis told TGRT broadcaster in an interview.
Greek Cypriots represent the island internationally and in the European Union, while Turkey is the only country to recognize the Turkish Cypriot state.