Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
Sadly I don't see a ready solution. The problem for the turkish cypriots is that their resolution is in the hands of the greeks, who have no reason to play ball.

The Northern cypriots voted against a solution when it was within their grasp and also in the interest of the south. Now the South has no interest in solving the problem as they've got what they wanted and so are using their power of veto to let the N Cypriots hang out of resentment for the invasion.

This will only be fixed if Turkey, the EU and the UN take the decision out of the hands of the Greek cypriots. Which will require both Turkey and the rest of the EU to get mutually enthusiastic about Turkey joining up. An enthusiasm currently on the wane.

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Mon Aug 21st, 2006 at 06:28:42 AM EST
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I think it's more complex. The Greek Cypriots already have a huge incentive in this, and that is reunion and recovery of land for citizens. That's why they have to deal, and that's why the gov't has already said they are oriented toward Turkey's entry into the EU. That would mean a de facto reunion of the island.

The problems, as always, are the terms of the negotiation. So, I don't think one can say that Cyprus is against Turkey's accession the way some other European countries are. Put it this way: if Turkey were on the brink of joining this week, I guarantee you that Cyprus would vote for it. Turkey joining the EU would imply a de facto reunion of Cyprus since the acquis communitaire would take effect immediately. The question of turkish troops in Cyprus would be brought before EU courts. In many ways, the Greek Cypriots would far prefer Turkey's accession to the alternative.

Since Turkey's accession is not at all assured, Cyprus simply cannot give up the rights of its citizens as the Annan Plan envisioned. The Annan Plan was contradictory to the EU acquis communitaire, and it had to be agreed to prior to Cyprus' joining for it to take effect. This is why there is slow going on the island right now because legally everyone realizes that any reunion will have to take place according to EU rules, and without Turkey's progress toward the EU, the Turkish side is unwilling to negotiate. The Greek side is effectively prevented from negotiating.

My diary was made essentially to point out that Cyprus, in fact, has already proposed free trade for the north, under EU auspices, and that therefore they weren'tt he cause of the north's isolation.

by Upstate NY on Mon Aug 21st, 2006 at 09:25:58 AM EST
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