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Turkish Minister: Troops Won't Leave Cyprus Under Peace Deal

  • Associated Press

FILE - Turkey's Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu speaks during a news conference with German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel in Ankara, Turkey, June 5, 2017.

Turkey's foreign minister says Turkish soldiers will remain on Cyprus under any agreement to reunify the ethnically divided island.

Mevlut Cavusoglu says Turkey won't accept a peace accord that would mandate the withdrawal of all of its troops from Cyprus — a key demand by Greece and internationally recognized Greek Cypriots.

He told reporters after a morning round of talks at a Swiss resort Tuesday that anyone "dreaming" of removing all Turkish troops from the island has "to wake up."

Cavusoglu says abolishing military intervention rights in an envisioned federal Cyprus is a "non-starter" for Turkey and the nation's breakaway Turkish Cypriots.

Turkey has kept more than 35,000 troops on Cyprus since 1974, when it invaded in the wake of a coup mounted by supporters of union with Greece.

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