Turkish and Greek Cyprus leaders convene for second time

Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (KKTC) President Mustafa Akıncı and Greek Cypriot leader Nikos Anastasiadis came together at the neutral zone within the sidelines of re-launched negotiations regarding unification of the island.

Special Representative and Head of the United Nations Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus Lisa Buttenheim and United Nations Special Adviser on Cyprus Espen Barth Eide also attended the meeting of the leaders of Cyprus’ Turkish and Greek leaders.

Akıncı and Anastasiadis met last week and toured the island’s both Turkish and Greek sides together. On the other hand, negotiators both administrations, Özdil Nami and Andreas Mavroyannis had a preliminary meeting on Wednesday ahead of leaders meeting.

Negotiations for the reunification of Cyprus were suspended in October of last year following a unilateral decision by the Greek side, after Turkey sent a vessel to search for natural gas inside what Greek Cyprus considers to be its Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ).

Cyprus was split in 1974 after Turkey intervened when a Greek Cypriot military junta removed a civilian government with the aim of uniting the island with Greece. Greek Cyprus enjoys international recognition, while Turkish Cyprus is recognized only by Ankara.