In December 1963, just three years after Cyprus became independent, the complex constitutional structure that had been put in place collapsed. While there were undoubtedly many who sought to make an independent Cypriot state work, or at least tolerate its existence, there were large numbers from both communities who were determined to undermine the new republic. Many Greek Cypriots, resentful at the way in which union with Greece had been prevented and angry at Turkish Cypriot over-representation in the government, sought to find a way to force them out of power, which might then open the way for Enosis. Similarly, Turkish Cypriot hardliners sought to partition the island and carve out an area of exclusive Turkish Cypriot control as a prelude to union with Turkey. Following an ill-fated effort by Britain to bring about a political settlement to the crisis, overall responsibility for peacekeeping and peacemaking on the island was entrusted to the United Nations in March 1964. The following year, the UN Mediator suggested that the Greek Cypriots should halt their efforts to secure Enosis and that the Turkish Cypriots should put aside their calls for a federal settlement. The proposals were rejected by Turkey and the Turkish Cypriots and the process fell into abeyance. After another bout of fighting on the island in 1967, a new process of intercommunal talks began. This time the basic premise was that the unitary state should continue to exist, but that the Turkish Cypriots should have greater autonomy. These talks continued for the next seven years, but produced no results.
KeywordsEurope Turkey Liner Arena Clarification
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