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Cyprus After Elections

Recapturing the Crans Montana Momentum for Peace Negotiations

SWP Comment 2018/C 11, 21.02.2018, 4 Pages Research Areas

The beginning of 2018 coincided with elections on both sides of the “Green Line” in Cyprus. The 7 January 2018 parliamentary elections in the “Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC)” and the 28 January–4 February 2018 presidential elections in the Republic of Cyprus reshuffled the Cypriot political landscape. The disillusionment and the fatigue of pro-conflict-resolution forces became clear, and the Cyprus question was relatively low on the agenda of electoral candidates. Nevertheless, the aftermath of the elections finds hardliners and opponents to a UN-brokered peace deal in a weaker position. This provides an opportunity for the resumption of peace negotiations from the point at which they stalled at Crans Montana last July. Both communities should move fast to restore trust and resolve the remaining issues, as international interest should not be taken for granted. Inertia or a new failure in peace negotiations is likely to lead to the end of UN operations in Cyprus, which would boost insecurity across the island.