Lagos’ parliamentary question to HR/VP Borrell on double standards in the EU’s sanctions

Dear colleagues, 

The imposition of the EU sanctions on Russia proves that the EU’s reflexes work only when there is a willingness. Moreover, it raises reasonable questions to all of us who refuse to forget history because we are reluctant to relive it: why has the EU not imposed financial sanctions on Turkey, which since 1974 has illegally occupied 36% of the territory of an EU Member State? Isn’t this a sufficient reason to impose sanctions in terms of international law?

I am therefore going to table the following parliamentary question to the High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy (HR/VP), Mr Josep Borrell. 

If you would like to co-sign it, please let me know by Wednesday 2 March.

Thank you in advance,




Sanctions and the EU’s double standards

Immediately after the start of Russia’s military operations against Ukraine, the European Council hastened to impose sanctions, both against the Russian economy as a whole and to the detriment of individuals. However, the EU and its leaders seem to have completely forgotten that from 1974 until today, 36% of the territory of Cyprus is under illegal Turkish occupation. Like Russia, Turkey has violated and continues to violate international law without being subject to sanctions or restrictions. On the contrary, the EU chooses to assist the Turkish Cypriots since, from 2006 to 2021, it has allocated almost 623 million euros in projects of support to the Turkish Cypriot community, “legitimizing” the Turkish invasion. At the same time, Turkey insists on refusing to reveal the fate of hundreds of Greek Cypriot and Greek missing persons, Nicosia remains the only divided capital in the world and the human rights of Greek Cypriots have been brutally violated since 1974.

Therefore, we ask HR/VP:

– Is the imposition of sanctions on Russia, an occasion for imposing sanctions on Turkey, which, in breach of international law, continues to illegally occupy EU territory since 1974?

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