Cyprus after the Helsinki Summit
Journal of Cyprus Studies, Vol. 5, Nos. 3 & 4 (Summer-Fall 1999), pp 87-110
The December 1999 European Council summit's verdict on Cyprus in Helsinki has complicated the path towards resolving the conflict on the island. By de-linking Cyprus peace settlement from accession of the "Republic of Cyprus" to the European Union, the Helsinki summit has given license to the Greek Cypriot leadership to be more obdurate in future in its negotiating stance at UN proximity talks: now there will be no incentive for Greek Cyprots to move towards political settlement of the issue when it is understood that the "Republic of Cyprus" would be accepted by the Europeans as an EU member even without such a settlement. The possibility of full EU membership for the "Republic of Cyprus," even if Greek Cypriots do not solve their differences with Turkish Cypriots, complicates the situation on the island by enabling the former to feel that time is on their side, so that they need not prepare for the "give-and-take process" that is required to end the dispute. Full Text