American Hellenic Institute


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AHI Letter to President Clinton on Yugoslavia and Double Standard on Turkey Sent to Entire Congress
April 8, 1999 No. 15/99 (202) 785-8430

AHI Letter to President Clinton on Yugoslavia and Double Standard on Turkey Sent to Entire Congress

On April 8, 1999 the American Hellenic Institute forwarded to the entire U.S. Congress and to the media a copy of its April 2, 1999 letter to President Clinton on "NATO's Bombing of Yugoslavia: Double Standards toward Turkey" to the entire membership of the US Congress. The cover letter of April 8, 1999 reads:

"Re: U.S. Policy on Yugoslavia and Double Standards on Turkey
Regarding the Kurds and Cyprus

Dear Senator or Representative:
I enclose a copy of my letter of April 2, 1999 to President Clinton expressing concern over the regional implications of the NATO military action against Yugoslavia. The letter criticizes the Administration for continuing to apply a double standard to Turkey regarding the Kurds and Cyprus.

While condemning the brutality of Serbia's actions and expressing support for autonomy for the Albanian minority in Serbia, the letter regrets the "major diplomatic failure" which led to the bombing campaign. It urges an early resumption of the diplomatic process. The letter commends the generous Greek response to the refugee crisis.

With regard to Turkey and the Kurds, the letter shows that the reasons cited by the Administration for action against Serbia apply equally to Turkey. For 15 years, the Turkish military has conducted a scorched earth policy against its Kurdish minority that has resulted in deaths, burned villages, and forced population displacement on a scale exceeding Kosovo.

Turkey's 1974 invasion of Cyprus and subsequent occupation of 37.3% of the island is a clear and unambiguous violation of international law, including the UN Charter and the North Atlantic Treaty. Further, Turkey violated U.S. laws because it illegally used U.S. supplied arms in its invasion of Cyprus.

The Administration's failure to apply to Turkey its own stated arguments for action against Serbia constitutes a grotesque double standard. The letter calls on the Administration to use the opportunity of its and NATO's engagement in the Balkans to act on the more serious problems of aggression against Cyprus by the military controlled government of Turkey and the Turkish military's 15 year war of terror in Turkish Kurdistan.


Eugene T. Rossides