For almost forty years the fate of Varosha has been a painful source of resentment among Greek Cypriots and a strong bargaining tool for the Turks who have deliberately avoided any development of the resort. Various proposals have been put forward to end the impasse – the latest to turn the town into a UN-administered buffer zone which would allow Greek Cypriots to return as an act of goodwill, rather than a prelude to reunification. This would, it is thought, help grease the wheels of Turkey’s accession to the EU. In August 2012 President Demetris Christofias said Varosha “can, as in the past, be a bridge of peace, hope, cooperation and cohabitation”. Though with Turkey boycotting negotiations during Cyprus’s presidency of the EU in 2012 its future seemed stuck in sun-bleached stalemate.
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