Ban Ki Moon’s long awaited progress report on the negotiations in Cyprus did not come up with a final recommendation on how long the United Nations will be committed to engage in Cyprus. However, he warned that the UN would not continue indefinitely to spend efforts and money on a process that does not seem to render any progress. The underlying question is why so much time has been spent on a process that does not seem to be leading toward a successful conclusion.
In order to assess this question this ECMI Issue Brief #25 addresses a couple of interrelated questions, such as how a desired future solution should be devised for the respective communities. Is there a real desire to change the current political system on behalf of the Greek Cypriot community? Does the Turkish Cypriot community really wish to enter a multi-cultural political set-up in which it shall play a minority role albeit one that will include extensive participation rights? What are the interests of external actors, notably Turkey, the European Union and the United States of America? Finally, are there push factors that would make a solution possible or might there be an overarching interest that unites various actors in the secret desire to perpetuate the situation and preserve the so called “Cyprus Problem”?