Turkey says peace talks to continue after Turkish Cypriot election

17:56, April 19, 2010      

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Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan said peace talks on the Cyprus island would continue after hawkish Dervis Eroglu won a key Turkish Cypriot leadership election on Sunday, the semi-official Anatolia news agency reported Monday.

Erdogan was quoted of telling the Turkish NTV channel on Sunday that efforts to find a solution to the Cyprus issue under the auspices of the United Nations would continue.

He said he does not believe a different process would begin after the election.

Hard-line nationalist Dervis Eroglu won Sunday's election with 50.38 percent of votes, defeating moderate incumbent Mehmet Ali Talat who garnered 42.85 percent of votes.

Analysts fear the result would deal a blow to the ongoing reunification talks with the Greek Cypriots, which have already blocked six negotiation chapters in Turkey's accession talks with the European Union.

Eroglu told supporters on Sunday night he would continue negotiations with Greek Cypriot leader Demetris Christofias for a solution to the Cyprus issue.

An east Mediterranean island, Cyprus has been divided since 1974 when Turkey militarily intervened and occupied the north of the island following a coup by a group of Greek officers.

Reunification talks have been conducted by Christofias and Talat for 19 months but show slow progress.

Source: Xinhua


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