Cyprus, officially the Republic of Cyprus, is a Eurasian island country situated in the eastern Mediterranean south of Turkey, west of Lebanon, Syria, and Israel, north of Egypt, and east of Greece. Cyprus is the third largest Mediterranean island and one of the most popular tourist destinations, attracting over 2.4 million tourists per year. A former British colony, it gainedindependence from the United Kingdom in 1960 and became a Commonwealth republic in 1961. The Republic of Cyprus is a developed country and has been a member of the European Union since 1 May 2004. It adopted the euro on 1 January 2008. In 1974, following years of intercommunal violence between ethnic Greeks and Turks and an coup d'état by Greek Cypriot nationalists aimed at annexing the island to Greeceand engineered by the military junta then in power in Athens, Turkey invaded and occupied one third of the island. This led to the displacement of thousands of Cypriots and the establishment of a separate Turkish Cypriot political entity in the north. This event and its resulting political situation is a matter of conflict. The Republic of Cyprus, the internationally recognized state, claimssovereignty over the entire island of Cyprus and its surrounding waters, with appendix (annexe) of the Treaty of Establishment of the Republic providing for 3% of its territory to be used by the United Kingdom as sovereign military bases. The island is in fact partitioned into four main parts:
• the area under the effective control of the Republic of Cyprus, in the south of the island;
• theTurkish-controlled area in the north calling itself the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (recognized only by Turkey);
• the United Nations-controlled Green Line, separating the two; and
• two British Sovereign Base Areas .
(and largest city)
from the United Kingdom
- Date 1st October 1960
1 May 2004
The main historical events in Cyprus in the last times :
In 1878, as the result of the Cyprus Convention, the United Kingdom took over the government of Cyprus as a protectorate from the Ottoman Empire. In 1914, at the beginning of World War I, Cyprus was annexed by the United Kingdom. In 1925, followingthe dissolution of the Ottoman Empire, Cyprus was made a Crown Colony. Between 1955-59 EOKA was created by Greek Cypriots and led by George Grivas to perform enosis (union of the island with Greece). However the EOKA campaign did not result union with Greece but rather an independent republic, The Republic of Cyprus, in 1960.
In 1960, Turkish Cypriots were only the 18% of the Cypriot population.However, the 1960 constitution carried important safeguards for the participation of Turkish Cypriots to the state affairs, like vice-president being Turkish Cypriot, 30% of parliament being Turkish Cypriot, etc. Archbishop Makarios would be the President and Dr Fazil Kucuk would become Vice President. One of the articles in the constitution was the creation of separate local municipalities sothat Greek and Turkish Cypriots could manage their own municipalities in the big towns. This article of the constitution has never been implemented by the Republic and president Archbishop Makarios. Internal conflicts turned into full-fledged armed fighting between the two communities on the island which prompted United Nations to send peace keeping forces in 1964 (These forces are still in placetoday). Turkey invaded the island in 1974 and seized the northern third of the island, Turkish Cypriots in the south would travel north and Greek Cypriots in the north would move to the south. The de facto state of Northern Cyprus was proclaimed in 1975 under the name "Turkish Federated State of Northern Cyprus". The name was changed to its present form on 15 November 1983. The only country to...