Turkish Cypriots want settlement this year

June 30, 2010 11:25

UNITED NATIONS — The recently elected Turkish Cypriot leader challenged his Greek Cypriot rival to reach a peace deal this year that would reunite the divided Mediterranean island, saying "there must be a time limit."

Dervis Eroglu said in an interview Monday with The Associated Press that after decades of negotiations and isolation for northern Cyprus, it's time to reach a deal — and the United Nations, the European Union and the international community "have a responsibility in order to see these negotiations are successfully concluded."Cyprus has been divided between a Greek Cypriot south and a Turkish-occupied north since 1974, when Turkey invaded after an abortive Athens-backed coup by supporters of union with Greece. Turkish Cypriots declared an independent republic in 1983, but it is only recognized by Turkey which maintains 35,000 troops there.

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