267. Editorial Note

On December 30, President Makarios released a press statement asserting that constitutional provisions regarding separate municipalities were unworkable and that the Government of Cyprus would assume all the legislative and administrative functions previously performed by the separate municipalities. The Embassy commented:

“Unpublicized but secretly welcome by-product of expiration of law re municipalities is removal Communist mayors from Larnaca, [Page 540] Limassol and Famagusta. Commie Deputies, who urged extension of separate municipalities, now expected to join Greek-Cypriot Deputies in vote against extension in order avoid public alignment with Turkish Cypriots. Turkish Communal Chamber passed a law December 29 to assure extension Turkish municipal councils, in case municipalities law is allowed to expire. Greek-Cyps charge this law unconstitutional—fact which they expect to undermine Turkish-Cyps ability exercise authority and collect taxes in their communities. While Greek-Cyps say only economic pressures will be exerted on Turkish-Cyp community and violence is not likely, situation can be expected grow tenser and more volatile.” (Telegram 300 from Nicosia, December 31; Department of State, Central Files, 780A.00/12–3162)