The letters from Kyriacos Costa Kyriacou and Cypriot Ambassador Michael E. Sherifis equated the aggression against Kuwait with the Turkish military action in Cyprus {Feb. 6}. But unlike Iraq:

Turkey had been satisfied with British administration of the island.

Turkey was called in by an oppressed minority to the island.

Turkey had exhausted over a long period of time all possible diplomatic options for a solution to the problem.

Turkish action was a response to a Greek-inspired coup attempt against the legitimate Cypriot government, thereby staving off the expected annexation of the island to Greece.

Finally, Turkey has not annexed Northern Cyprus but encourages the multiparty government system there and continues to negotiate with the Greeks for a lasting and equitable solution. As far as I know Cyprus has no lucrative oil fields that would make it a valuable economic target; Turkish involvement was grounded simply in the desire to protect beleaguered compatriots and preempt an overly ambitious neighbor. The Turkish action was in fact an example of eleventh-hour landing of the marines (Turkish) on the beaches before the enemy crossed the border. The operation in Cyprus caused the downfall of the ruling Greek junta of the time. Let us hope that Desert Storm will have a similar effect in Baghdad. IHSAN KIZILTAN Washington

Turkey's intervention in Cyprus 1974 was in accordance with its treaty obligations as one of the three guarantors of Cyprus' independence. In contrast to Iraq's aggression, the timely Turkish intervention prevented the imminent annexation of Cyprus by Greece, while saving from annihilation the Turkish Cypriots, who had lived through 11 terrible years of persecution by the Greek Cypriots, and while bringing lasting peace to the island.

It is rather amusing to see Mr. Sherifis's concern for U.N. resolutions and efforts with respect to the Cyprus problem, as it was the Greek Cypriot administration, which illegally occupies the seat reserved for both peoples of Cyprus at the United Nations, which twice rejected draft framework agreements presented by the U.N. secretary general to find a solution to the Cyprus problem.

The analogy being drawn by the Greek Cypriots has been rejected by the U.S. secretary of state. During his testimony to the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on Feb. 7, Secretary James A. Baker III stated that he did "not believe that the U.N. resolutions respecting Cyprus are analogous to the U.N. resolutions with respect to the issue of Iraq-Kuwait."

As the secretary said, the resolutions on Cyprus "speak primarily of negotiations and negotiating." The Turkish Cypriot side, for its part, is fully committed to the achievement of a bi-communal, bi-zonal federal solution to be negotiated by the two sides in accordance with the provisions of the U.N. Security Council Resolution 649 of March 1990.

BULENT ALIRIZA Representative Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus Washington