by George Stergiou Kaloudis, Ph.D.
, Part 1 of 2, Page 2

extremely difficult to have fruitful negotiations and reach a permanent settlement.

On top of this, the domestic politics of those nations compound the problem. Both Greece and Turkey are greatly involved with what is happening in Cyprus, reacting in may cases to the Cyprus problem in terms of their own internal problems. In many instances if either the Greek or Turkish government is weak or experiences a change of government, it takes a hard-line policy toward Cyprus in order to divert the attention of its people from internal problems or to criticize policies of former governments. An example of this is the period just before the 1974 Turkish invasion of the island. The Turkish Prime Minister, Mr. Ecevit, was facing great political and economic problems and was in danger of losing power. After the invasion, however, he became a national hero, and at least for a while internal problems were forgotten.

Greece, too, has been guilty of using the Cyprus situation for political purposes. Angelo Andriopoulos argues that the different Greek governments, at least until the mid-1960's, supported the Cypriot right of self-determination and followed consistent policies toward Cyprus (186,188). I agree with Dr. Andriopoulos only to some extent. While all of these governments supported the Cypriot right of self-determination, their policies were not necessarily consistent. Mr. George Papandreou, the leader of the opposition party when Cyprus became an independent nation, criticized the Zurich-London agreements signed by the Karamanlis government. If George Papandreou had been in power, he would not have made to the Turkish Cypriots the concessions Mr. Karamanlis made. Also, Andreas Papandreou on numerous occasions criticized Mr. Karamanlis for not taking a tougher stance against Turkey after the invasion of Cyprus in 1974 and for allowing Turkey to explore for oil in the Aegean. In fact, he stated that Mr. Karamanlis should have ordered the capture or the destruction of the Turkish exploration ships in the Aegean.

Thus, a variety of disputes between Greece and Turkey and their domestic politics make it difficult to find a permanent solution to the Cyprus problem and help destabilize the entire situation.

Greek and Turkish Cypriots

Throughout the years, the two Cypriot communities have cooperated with each other, but the have remained separate.(3) The many differences between them have contributed to this kind of separatism. The present situation in Cyprus is, to some extent, a result of those differences, whose origins lie beyond the British occupation of Cyprus.

The most important difference between them is that of nationalism. The Greek Cypriots wanted, at least until a few years ago, to unite with Greece, while the Turkish Cypriots were against enosis (union with Greece), developing their own nationalist movement opposing enosis. Because of their different objectives, the two communities were not willing or able to negotiate a settlement satisfactory to both.

A second important difference concerns allegiance. Each of the communities is more loyal to Greece or Turkey than to Cyprus. Both consider Greece or Turkey as mother country, and never isolate themselves from Greece or Turkey (Salih 25-26). The outcome is the absence of patriotism in Cyprus.

Compounding the problem is ethnic origin. Both communities have different ethnic backgrounds. While the Greek Cypriots see themselves as descendants of Plato and Aristotle, the Turkish Cypriots see themselves as descendants of the Ottoman rulers. This leads to ethnic hatred, stereotypes of each other, and claims, especially by the Greeks, that they culturally superior.

Culture is another difference. Both communities have been influenced by the traditions, customs, and beliefs of Greece and Turkey, and this perpetuates, even more, the separation of the two communities. It can be argued that there is no such thing as a Cypriot culture.

Finally, both communities are followers of different religions and speak different languages.

All these differences make it difficult for the tow communities to live closely with each other, to think of Cyprus first and not Greece or Turkey, and to find a solution that is best for Cyprus as a whole. These differences have been evolving historically throughout many separate incidents that whatever one side wants, the other is opposed to.This was evident in 1878 when the British created a Legislative Council in Cyprus. The Greek Cypriots wanted more

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