13 Amendments proposed by Makarios III

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In 1963, Archbishop Makarios III, the elected president of the newly-independent Cyprus at the time, put forward a set of 13 proposed constitutional amendments intended; as the president had stated, "to resolve constitutional deadlocks".

The Thirteen Amendments[edit]

  1. The right of veto of the President and the Vice-President of the Republic to be abolished.
  2. The Vice-President of the Republic to deputise for or replace the President of the Republic in case of his temporary absence or incapacity to perform his duties. In consequence, therefore, all the constitutional provisions in respect of joint action by the President and the Vice-President of the Republic to be modified accordingly.
  3. The Greek President of the House of Representatives and its Turkish Vice-President to be elected by the House as a whole and not as at present the President by the Greek Members of the House and the Vice-President by the Turkish Members of the House.
  4. The Vice-President of the House of Representatives to deputise for or replace the President of the House in case of his temporary absence or incapacity to perform his duties.
  5. The constitutional provisions regarding separate majority for enactment of Laws by the House of Representatives to be abolished.
  6. The constitutional provision regarding the establishment of separate Municipalities in the five main towns to be abolished. Provision should be made so that: (a) The Municipal Council in each of the aforesaid five towns shall consist of Greek and Turkish Councillors in proportion to the number of the Greek and Turkish inhabitants of such town by whom they shall be elected respectively. (b) In the Budget of each of such aforesaid towns, after deducting any expenditure required for common services, a percentage of the balance proportionate to the number of the Turkish inhabitants of such town shall be earmarked and disposed of in accordance with the wishes of the Turkish Councillors.
  7. The constitutional provision regarding Courts consisting of Greek Judges to try Greeks and of Turkish Judges to try Turks and of mixed Courts consisting of Greek and Turkish Judges to try cases where the litigants are Greeks and Turks to be abolished.
  8. The division of the Security Forces into Police and Gendarmerie to be abolished, (Provision to be made in case the Head of the Police is a Greek the Deputy Head to be a Turk and vice versa).
  9. The numerical strength of the Security Forces and of the Army to be determined by Law and not by agreement between the President and the Vice-President of the Republic.
  10. The proportion of the participation of Greek and Turkish Cypriots in the composition of the Public Service and of the Forces of the Republic, i.e. the Police and the Army, to be modified in proportion to the ratio of the population of Greek and Turkish Cypriots.
  11. The number of the members of the Public Service Commission to be reduced from ten to either five or seven.
  12. All the decisions of the Public Service Commission to be taken by simple majority. If there is an allegation of discrimination on the unanimous request either of the Greek or of the Turkish members of the Commission, its Chairman to be bound to refer the matter to the Supreme Constitutional Court.
  13. The Greek Communal Chamber to be abolished.

Makarios's justification for The Thirteen Amendments[edit]

"The Constitution of the Republic of Cyprus, in its present form, creates many difficulties in the smooth government of the State and impedes the development and progress of the country. It contains many sui generis provisions conflicting with internationally accepted democratic principles and creates sources of friction between Greek and Turkish Cypriots".

Turkish Cypriot response[edit]

Turkey and the Turkish Cypriots rejected the proposed amendments as an attempt to settle constitutional disputes in favour of the Greek Cypriots[1] and as a means of demoting Turkish status from co-founders of the state to one of minority status removing their constitutional safeguards in the process. Turkish Cypriots filed a lawsuit against the 13 amendments in Supreme Constitutional Court of Cyprus (SCCC). Makarios clarified not to comply with whatever the decision of SCCC will be,[2] and defended his amendments as being necessary "to resolve constitutional deadlocks" as opposite to the stance of SCCC.[3] On 25 April 1963, SCCC decided that Makarios' 13 amendments are illegal. On 21 May, president of SCCC resigned due to the Makarios' disobedience to the laws of SCCC, thereby disobedience to the laws of Cyprus. On 15 July, Makarios ignored the decision of SCCC.[4] On 30 November, Makarios legalized the 13 proposals.

Greek Cypriots' response[edit]

Armenians' response[edit]

Other minorities' response[edit]


  1. ^ The Main Narrative, continued Archived 2007-02-17 at the Wayback Machine. The Cyprus Conflict
  2. ^ Pre-Rejection of SCCC decision by Makarios The fact that the decision of SCCC was not to be implemented by Makarios was made quite clear, and it was not implemented. Non-implementation of the decision of a Constitutional Court is sufficient reason to compel the resignation of its President, me"
  3. ^ Deutsche Zeitung (Nr. 15, 18-19.01.1964) Archived 2011-07-19 at the Wayback Machine. SCCC: "...deny the allegation that an implementation of the constitution was impossible. It is a matter of good will to make it work."
  4. ^ Republic of Cyprus, SCCC Official Website "... in order to face this situation which paralysed the judiciary..."

See also[edit]

External sources[edit]

Cyprus Conflict.net