The international community is trying to help the two parties to reach a negotiated settlement ever since the outbreak of the Cyprus conflict in 1963. There is more than one source of division in Cyprus. But the most crucial one is the differences in the aspirations of the two sides. Soon after the creation of the bi-national State of Cyprus in 1960, the Greek Cypriots attempted to eliminate the Turkish Cypriots through ethnic cleansing in order to clear the way for Enosis. They destroyed the 1960 order and turned the joint state into a Greek Cypriot entity by usurping the title of "Government of Cyprus". However, in the face of the strong resistance of the Turkish Cypriots and the stance of Turkey, the Greek/Greek Cypriot camp failed to realize their design of "Hellenizing" Cyprus.
In the period following 1974 it became clear that the Greek Cypriots and Greece have not given up their ambitions of achieving dominance over Cyprus. Despite the bitter events from 1963 to 1974, the Greek Cypriot administration, instigated by Greece, increased its military build-up and provocative activities in the island. The armament efforts were stepped up under the so-called " joint military doctrine". Sophisticated weapon systems were introduced into the Greek Cypriot military arsenal. Air and naval bases for the use of Greece were constructed. All these military activities have further raised tensions and deepened the existing mistrust in Cyprus. In the past, Greek Cypriot arms build-up has only brought about suffering. Then why does it continue? The Greek Cypriot leadership has made it clear that they would never give up the cause of Hellenizing Cyprus and that use of force would not be excluded in attaining this goal.
On the other hand, the Turkish Cypriot side has expressed its readiness for a partnership agreement which safeguards the sovereign equality of the two sides and the balance between Turkey and Greece. But the Greek Cypriots have shown that they do not want a partnership on this basis. And why should they? They have not destroyed the 1960 order in order to share power with the Turkish Cypriots in a new partnership. The Turks want to live as equals. The Greeks want dominance and power over the Turks.
Today, the two peoples of Cyprus are enjoying conditions of peace and tranquility. But the bitter events from 1963 to 1974 are not forgotten. The humanitarian tragedy of the Bosnians and the Kosovars recall the sufferings endured by the Turks of Cyprus. The conflict in Kosovo has also unveiled the open support of the Greek Cypriot administration to the aggressor. The Greek Cypriot community and the church have mobilized their means for the Serbs.
- Cyprus in the period 1571 - 1959
- What happened in 1959 - 1960?
- Why and how did the 1960 order collepse?
- How did the Greek Cypriots persecute the Turks of Cyprus between 1963 - 1974?
- How did the situation change after July 1974?
- Where do the parties stand in terms of a negotiated settlement?
- Why Greece and the Greek Cypriots do not want peace in the island?