Cyprus in the World  


Cyprus in the International Community

Soon after independence in 1960 the Republic of Cyprus became a member of the United Nations, the Commonwealth, the Non-Aligned Movement and the Council of Europe. Cyprus subsequently became a member of other international organizations, including the Organization on Security and Cooperation in Europe, and the World Bank.

In 1974, Turkey, in violation of international law and the United Nations Charter, invaded Cyprus and since then continues to illegally occupy by military force 36,2% of the Republic’s territory. The international community has stated categorically its support for the internationally recognized sovereignty of the Republic of Cyprus over the whole of its territory, including the occupied part.

United Nations resolutions reaffirm, the right of the Republic of Cyprus and its people to full and effective control over the entire territory of Cyprus and natural and other resources and call upon all states to support and help the government of the Republic to exercise these rights (United Nations General Assembly resolution 37/253 of 13 May 1983).

In 1983 the occupation regime, at the instigation of Turkey, arbitrarily and unilaterally declared “independence” in the occupied part of Cyprus. The Security Council of the United Nations by its resolution 541(1983) deplored this declaration, considered it as legally invalid and called for its withdrawal.

Furthermore, by its resolution 550(1984), the Security Council condemned all secessionist actions and called upon all states not to recognize the purported entity, the so-called “Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus” and not to facilitate or in any way assist the secessionist entity.

By the same resolutions as well as by a number of other resolutions the United Nations called upon the international community not to recognize any Cypriot state other than that of the Republic of Cyprus and to respect its sovereignty, independence, territorial integrity and unity.

The independence and sovereignty of the Republic of Cyprus as well as the legality of its internationally recognized government have been recognized repeatedly in numerous resolutions and decisions by other international bodies, such as the European Union, the Council of Europe, the Commonwealth and the Non-Aligned Movement.

The international community, with the sole exception of Turkey, which promoted the purported secession of the occupied part, recognizes only one state in Cyprus, the Republic of Cyprus, and its legal government.

Cyprus in the European Union

On 1 May 2004 the Republic of Cyprus became a full member of the EU completing a long journey that lasted more than three decades. The President of the Republic of Cyprus signed the Accession Treaty on 16 April 2003 in Athens, Greece and on 14 July the House of Representatives ratified the Treaty of Accession unanimously. In a statement during celebrations marking Cyprus’ accession, the president of Cyprus said:

“This moment signals a momentous milestone in Cyprus’s history. It is the second most important historic landmark after the proclamation of the Republic of Cyprus 44 years ago.
This moment marks the successful conclusion of a long effort and the hopeful beginning of a new course and a new era for Cyprus.

As from this moment, the Republic of Cyprus formally becomes a Member of the European Union. It becomes a full, integral and inseparable member of the great European family.
Adoption of the Euro.

On 1 January 2008, Cyprus and Malta became the 14th and 15th member states of the EU to join the Eurozone after fulfilling all the necessary criteria, following the decision of the European Council in June 2007. At the official celebration for Cyprus’ accession to the Euro zone, held in Nicosia on 18 January 2008, the President of the EU Commission praised the economic, monetary and fiscal policies of the Government of Cyprus that led to the complete alignment with the Maastricht and European Central Bank (ECB) criteria for adopting the euro.

EU Accession Benefits

Cyprus has always been a part of the European family of nations. Accession to the EU was a natural choice for Cyprus, one that was dictated by its culture and civilization, its history, its European outlook and its traditions of democracy and freedom.

Cyprus has a lot to benefit from EU membership. It also has a lot to offer as a member-state. The geographic position of the country, the healthy state of its economy, the devotion of the people to the ideals of the EU are all elements which enable Cyprus to contribute to the stability and welfare of the European family, regardless of its small size.

Situated at the intersection of important transport and communications routes linking Europe to the Middle East and Asia, Cyprus aspires to become the region’s economic and financial operations centre, a major communications and transport hub, and a meeting place for peoples and cultures.

With its advanced technical infrastructure and skilled human resources it can become a bridge from where European enterprises launch their activities. Moreover, it can act as a shield, protecting Europe from the threat of terrorism, the inflow of narcotics, illegal immigration, and money laundering and trafficking in human beings.

The process of EU enlargement is proof of the common determination of the peoples of Europe to come together in a Union that has become the driving force for the consolidation of stability, security, peace, democracy and sustainable growth in Europe and beyond.

As a full member of the Union, Cyprus is working actively with all other member-states in shaping the future development of Europe and in completing the ambitious project of European reunification and integration.

The EU has taken a firm position in support to the Cyprus problem that respects the sovereignty, independence, territorial integrity and unity of the country, in accordance with the relevant UN resolutions and the high-level agreements between the two communities. While the UN Secretary-General’s mission of good offices has provided the framework for a negotiated settlement of the Cyprus problem, the EU is now expected to assume a central role in assuring that any proposed settlement conforms to its principles and legal norms from the beginning.

Source:  Press and Information Office, Republic of Cyprus