Today marks the 45th anniversary of the Turkish Rescue and Peace Operation conducted by the Turkish Army in Cyprus on July 20, 1974 to protect the lives and liberties of the island’s Turkish community from mass extermination.

Assembly of Turkish American Associations (ATAA) commends the Turkish Armed Forces, which carried out one of the two modern military interventions that improved human rights and democracy, the other being the British intervention in the Falkland Islands. The Turkish intervention of 1974 toppled the Greek junta in Greece and arrested anti-Turkish and anti-Muslim massacres by the Greek military and Greek Cypriot militias that had been campaigning for Greek and Greek Orthodox Christian homogeneity on the island since 1963 under the ineffective watch of United Nations Security Forces.

ATAA supports the removal of the economic and cultural embargoes that have continued the racist policies of the Greek Cypriot government and violated the human rights of Turkish Cypriots on the island since 1974. ATAA supports the self-determination of Turkish-Cypriots, who at this time seek a bi-communal, bi-zonal federation on the island, in opposition to the Greek Cypriot government, which seeks a politically, ethnically, and religiously Hellenic-dominated island.