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Revisiting the Cyprus Conundrum in Turkey-EU Relations

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The establishment of the Republic of Cyprus (RoC) in 1960 led to a short-lived security arrangement among guarantor powers (i.e., Turkey, Greece, and the United Kingdom). Over the decades, the long-standing Cyprus problem remained contained, effectively as a Greco-Turkish backwater issue, at most a derivative consigned to the margins of NATO’s southern flank. The accession of the divided island into the European Union (EU) in 2004 introduced a new regional and potentially disruptive geopolitical dynamic into the relations. While Turkey became officially an EU candidate member-state in 1999, diplomatic attempts to resolve the Cyprus problem in time for EU accession failed, and the internal and security dimensions of the Cyprus problem remain unresolved until today. 


Erol Kaymak, Prof. Dr., Eastern Mediterranean University

Erol Kaymak is Professor of International Relations at Eastern Mediterranean University.  He has served as primary analyst or otherwise contributed to public opinion surveys and research reports on Cyprus. Alongside research and academia, he straddles politics and public diplomacy. Since 2016 he has been serving as Co-Coordinator for the Cyprus Chapter of the Greek Turkish Forum that aims to contribute to bilateral relations between Greece and Turkey.  He also served as an advisor to the Turkish Cypriot presidential office for Cyprus negotiations.  

Zenonas Tziarras, Dr., PRIO Cyprus Centre

Zenonas Tziarras is a Researcher at PRIO Cyprus Centre focusing on Eastern Mediterranean geopolitics. He holds a PhD in Politics and International Studies from the University of Warwick (UK) and worked as adjunct lecturer at the University of Cyprus, UCLan Cyprus, the University of Warwick and Cyprus Police Academy. He completed a Post-Doctoral Fellowship at the University of Cyprus and collaborated with a number of think tanks in Cyprus and abroad. He participates in the editorial board of New Middle Eastern Studies and, among other publications, he edited The New Geopolitics of the Eastern Mediterranean, and authored International Politics in the Eastern Mediterranean (in Greek) and Turkish Foreign Policy: The Lausanne Syndrome in the Eastern Mediterranean and Middle East.

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