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Green-golden leaf thrown in the sea > I August 13, 2006

Posted by grhomeboy in Cyprus, Cyprus Occupied.
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  Cyprus, an island in the eastern Mediterranean Sea renowned since ancient times for its mineral wealth, superb wines and produce, and natural beauty.

Cyprus, a “golden-green leaf thrown into the Sea” and a land of “wild weather and volcanoes,” in the words of the Greek Cypriot poet Leonidas Malenis, Cyprus comprises tall mountains, fertile valleys, and wide beaches.

Settled for more than 10 millennia, Cyprus stands at a cultural, linguistic, and historic crossroads between Europe and Asia. Its chief cities, the capital of Nicosia, Limassol, Famagusta, and Paphos, have absorbed the influences of generations of conquerors, pilgrims, and travelersand have an air that is both cosmopolitan and provincial.

Today Cyprus is a popular tourist destination for visitors from Europe, favoured by honeymooners (as befits the legendary home of Aphrodite, the ancient Greek goddess of love), bird-watchers drawn by the island’s diversity of migratory species, and other vacationers.

In 1960 Cyprus became independent of Britain (it had been a crown colony since 1925) as the Republic of Cyprus. The long-standing conflict between the Greek Cypriot majority and the Turkish Cypriot minority and an invasion of the island by Turkish troops in 1974 produced an actual, although internationally unrecognized, partition of the island and led to the establishment in 1975 of a de facto Turkish Cypriot state in the northern third of the country. The Turkish Cypriot self-proclaimed state made a unilateral declaration of independence in 1983 and adopted the name Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus. Its independence was recognized only by Turkey.

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