Cyprus. According to CountryAAH, the total population in Cyprus is 1,207,370 people in 2020. Cyprus, with the exception of the self-proclaimed Turkish-supported republic in the northern part of the island, joined the EU on 1 May. EU accession was preceded by intensive diplomatic negotiations on a reunification plan presented by UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan, which meant that both parts of Cyprus would join the EU in the form of a federation. President Tassos Papadopoulos and Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash first gave the plan in February. Turkey had then put Denktash under pressure, as the EU made it clear that Turkish negotiations on EU membership would be facilitated if Northern Cyprus could be joined by the EU. But after another three weeks, Papadopoulos dismissed the plan, judging mainly because it was not considered to give Greek Cypriots sufficient rights to their old properties in Northern Cyprus.
On April 24, referendums were made on the plan in both parts of the island. About 65% of Turkish Cypriots voted yes, while 75% of Greek Cypriots, at the request of Papadopoulos, voted no. A number of EU representatives condemned Papadopoulo’s actions, claiming that he was in favor of the vote. had manipulated the media by ensuring that TV interviews with certain EU and UN representatives were not broadcast. The Turkish Cypriots, on the other hand, were praised by the EU, which decided to ease the trade embargo on the Republic by enabling Turkish Cypriot exports via the southern part of Cyprus. The EU also decided that the € 259 million promised in Northern Cyprus for a reunification would be paid out.
In October, the UN Security Council decided to reduce the number of UN troops in Cyprus (UNFICYP) by one-third to 860. In the June 13 elections, both the Democratic Assembly (DISY) and the Workers’ Progress Party (AKEL) received 28% while Papadopoulo’s party, the Democratic Party (DIKO), received 17%. The Republic of Northern Cyprus received a new coalition government on January 13 with Mehmet Ali Talat, leader of the EU-friendly Republican Turkish Party (CTP), as prime minister. After several layoffs in the spring, the government had only 23 out of 50 seats in May.
At the end of May, the Turkish Cypriot government abolished the passport requirement for EU citizens, who were granted the right to visit the Republic by presenting only one ID card. As of June 1, the time limits for Greek Cypriots on visits to Northern Cyprus were abolished. They were given the right to stay for any length of time only if they lived in tourist facilities.