Kıbrıs Postası, a Turkish Cypriot daily, has published an interview with the ‘minister of public works and transport’ Erhan Arikli, who stated that a Russian company has applied to operate direct flights from Russia to the “TRNC”, as it calls the Turkish occupied north of Cyprus.
Though few details of the company are available, Arikli said flights will start if approved by the Russian government.
Speaking on Genç TV , Arikli said: “There is a serious Russian potential here. 15 to 20 thousand Russian citizens live in the TRNC. There are 100 thousand Russian citizens in the south, but they are slowly moving to the north. They have problems because there are no flights from the south to Moscow, so there is a serious demand for flights from the TRNC. Opening a Russian “consulate” here will also be a positive step.”
Referring to a much-discussed plan to establish a Turkish Cypriot airline, Arikli there had been delays and the process was still under discussion. He added, however, the builders were working round the clock for the opening on November 15 of a new terminal at the main airport.
Cyprus Turkish Airlines served as the ‘flag’ carrier until its collapse in June 2010.