Can resettlement on Cyprus be a success?

After the failure of talks on reuniting the island, the Turkish Cypriot leadership has decided to open up several villages in the occupied north of the island for the return of former inhabitants who fled after the occupation by Turkish troops in 1974.

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Hürriyet Daily News (TR) /

Admitting crimes is a prerequisite for peace

Unless the two sides make sincere efforts to confront the past reconciliation will remain a distant goal, Hürriyet Daily News fears:

“A settlement in Cyprus is almost impossible unless the two sides on the island manage to confess the crimes they committed and apologize to each other. How can the two peoples of the island establish peace and start building a common future of confidence in each other while they have totally conflicting approaches as to how the Cyprus problem started? ... With a Greek Cypriot leader, archbishop and political spectrum systematically and intentionally refusing to acknowledge the crimes committed by their state and people on Turkish Cypriots and a population happy with impunity for the crimes against Turkish Cypriots, how are we going to have a reunited Cyprus?”

Cyprus Mail (CY) /

A dangerous development

For the Cyprus Mail current developments are proof that the Turkish side has opted for a Plan B:

“The decision to open the four Maronite villages for the return of their inhabitants - taken by the Turkish Cypriot leadership with the commander of the occupation forces - could be a sign of what is to come, an illustration of the Plan B the Turks spoke about in the wake of the Crans-Montana failure. ... It is becoming very apparent that [Cypriot President] Anastasiades' view that things would remain the same after a collapse of the peace process was a gross miscalculation. He ignored Turkey's warnings that the conference was the last chance for a settlement and is now faced with an unravelling situation he has very little control over.”

Hürriyet Daily News (TR) /

The opportunities and risks of Plan B

Hürriyet Daily News takes an ambivalent view of the Northern Cypriot leadership's latest steps:

“A massive reconstruction project might offer a golden opportunity for precious employment prospects and an economic boom. With such huge economic activity bringing together investors and workers of the two sides, it might be probable that soon politics might feel compelled to find some avenues of reconciliation. Of course, would the Greek Cypriot leadership be happy with the prospect of the north getting elevated to its status? Would Maronites and Varosha residents be given citizenship rights? ... On the other hand, this Plan B or 'settlement in pieces' approach might altogether kill the prospect of a comprehensive settlement on the island.”