Greek Cyprus amends Enosis decision, Turkish Cypriot leader ready to resume talks

DAILY SABAH WITH AGENCIES
NICOSIA
Published 07.04.2017 14:40
Updated 07.04.2017 17:56
Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades, UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres and Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akıncı pose before a trilateral meeting at the European headquarters of the UN in Geneva on Jan 12, 2017. (AFP Photo)
Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades, UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres and Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akıncı pose before a trilateral meeting at the European headquarters of the UN in Geneva on Jan 12, 2017. (AFP Photo)

Lawmakers in ethnically divided Cyprus have amended a controversial law about a commemoration in Greek Cypriot schools that angered breakaway Turkish Cypriots and led to reunification talks breaking off.

The amendment, which gives the education minister full discretion over such commemorations, was passed Friday by a vote of 30-20 with the support from the two largest Greek Cypriot parties.

Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (KKTC) President Mustafa Akıncı said that with the latest decision, talks would be resumed April 11 after a nearly two-month break.

The law had made the brief schoolroom commemoration of a 1950 referendum for the island's union with Greece mandatory. Turkish Cypriots saw it as a deviation from the stated goal of reunifying the island as a federation, something that Greek Cypriots strongly denied.

The eastern Mediterranean island was divided into a Turkish Cypriot state in the north and a Greek Cypriot administration in the south after a 1974 military coup by Greece was followed by the intervention of Turkey as a guarantor power.

The main goal is to find a political solution as the sides seek to reunify the island under a federal system after more than 40 years of division.

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