Mr. FILNER. Madam Speaker and colleagues. I rise today to commemorate the 36th anniversary of the invasion of Cyprus by Turkey. On July 20, 1974, Turkey invaded Cyprus in flagrant violation of international law.
The continuing presence of the occupied areas of Cyprus and the human rights violation of the Cypriot people is unacceptable! A solution cannot be achieved without the removal of all Turkish troops and settlers, and the return of all Cypriot citizens to their ancestral homes. Despite numerous U.N. resolutions calling for the return of the refugees to their home and properties and for the withdrawal of Turkish troops from Cyprus, Turkey continues to illegally occupy the northern part of Cyprus.
We should honor the Cypriots who continue in their tight for justice! Cyprus and the U.S. share a deep and abiding commitment to upholding the ideals of freedom, democracy. justice, human rights, and the international rule of law. The international community has a moral and ethical obligation to stand with the Cypriots to reunify their island and end the military occupation.
I ask my colleagues to stand with me and Cypriots to mark this important anniversary and take a stand for human rights and freedom.