Even by the lax pragmatism of international diplomacy, the self-styled "Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus" is a pariah. The government that runs the upper 37 per cent of the island is recognised only by Turkey, which maintains a huge garrison of troops in territory regarded by the official Republic of Cyprus as illegally occupied.
Some readers will insist that by publishing the story, we are encouraging people to visit a territory where property was illegally seized from the Greek Cypriot owners. And they may question our policy of featuring Turkey, whose human rights record is far from exemplary.
Life here would be much easier if we left out stories about contentious parts of the world - and our pages would be significantly emptier. Countries from Albania to Zambia have dubious human rights records. Many prospective travellers will opt not to go to certain places until an offending regime has been removed or reformed - my parents, for example, persuaded the family not to travel to Spain until Franco's Fascist rule had ended.
The Calder boycott of the costas did not do a great deal to dislodge the dictator, but we tourists collectively possess economic might, and have a responsibility to use it wisely. So while these travel pages are not the place to attempt to unravel conflicts as tangled as the division of Cyprus, I am conscious of the impact our stories may have. Let me know, when you feel we have failed properly to address human rights abuses about northern Cyprus, or anywhere else.
The one country we will not feature on our travel pages is Burma, where appalling outrages have been committed in the name of tourism.
We have no wish to encourage anyone to visit a country where slavery has been employed explicitly to develop a tourist infrastructure, and the Nobel Peace Prize winning opposition leader, Aung Sang Suu Kyi, has asked tourists to stay away.
"YOU WROTE about an incident in Tower Hamlets where a cycle lane was obstructed by a council vehicle doing its shopping," writes a reader from Wiltshire. "That same day, Swindon Council left a van across the outside lane of the local running track - while a 400-metre race was in progress - leaving one very disgruntled runner. `I stopped trying', he said. `What else do you do when you come round the bend and find a van in the way?'"
The writer of that letter may be a council employee; he ends: "You will forgive me if I merely sign myself An Onlooker."
I'M GOING to go on go.
If that sentence reads badly, blame the fashion for using lower-case letters in travel.
EasyJet started it: the low-fare airline prefers to be known as easyJet, which is fine except at the start of a sentence, when you reasonably expect a capital letter. Now go - the British Airways offshoot which easyJet accuses of pinching all its ideas - has copied the style on the tailplanes of its Boeings.
Even British Airways finds its subsidiary's name uncomfortable. In one short article in a company newsletter, the name is rendered as GO, Go and go, before the writer settles on "the airline".
Its rival would rather it emulated the style of the musician Prince, as in "the airline formerly known as easyJet".
i suspect the source of all this nonsense is the old album cover conceit of printing song lyrics in lower-case - i believe melanie's 1969 effort, candles in the rain, was the first of many.
Anyway I'm going to go on go to Copenhagen on 23 July, with an early start from Stansted. I may nod off in the departure lounge. So, in the words of another punctuation-conscious outfit, Wham!: wake me up before you go, go.Reuse content