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Northern Cyprus wants to talk


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Northern Cyprus wants to talk

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The crisis in Cyprus could influence timing of any new talks between the two sides.

The small island nation of Cyprus has been divided for almost forty years. A division which led to the Greek Cypriot south joining the EU as the Republic of Cyprus and prospering from this membership. Meanwhile, in the north, the self-proclaimed Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus remained isolated after a 2004 referendum on re-uniting the island was turned down by the south.

But today the banking crisis has left its impact in the south with businesses closing, banks calling in their loans and unemployment rising.

In an ironic twist of fate, the isolated north has been shielded from this crisis because of its very isolation but also because of Turkey which subsidises the northern Cypriot economy to the tune of three billion Turkish liras per year.

The Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus says it can help Cyprus out of its current crisis by working together on gas exploitation off the shores of Cyprus and transferring it through Turkey. Yet this would mean negotiating with Turkey which is still seen as the occupier by many in the south.

Euronews traveled to both northern and southern Cyprus to found out whether this crisis could become a catalyst in bringing the two sides back to the negotiating table to help solve one of Europe’s oldest conflicts, the division of Cyprus.

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