Restarting the Process
On 14 December the Turkish Cypriots went to the polls to elect a new assembly. Despite the polarisation of society in the run up to the polls, there were no reports of violence or intimidation. That evening the two sides waited for the results. While everyone expected a very close result, no one had anticipated just how little would divide the two camps. Even though the two main pro-solution parties, the CTP and BDH, won a narrow victory, capturing 48 per cent of the vote, the vagaries of the electoral system left them with as many seats as the two ruling parties, the UBP and DP, which took 46 per cent. Each group had 25 seats apiece in the 50-seat parliament.1 Suddenly the whole process had been thrown into disarray. In order to be able to form a government it was necessary to command a clear majority. Immediately, there was talk of the need for a new round of elections. But if this were to happen they would probably not take place until mid-February, which most observers felt would make a settlement by I May impossible.
KeywordsTurkey Straw Liner Iraq
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