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  Thursday, September 19, 2019
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Greek Cypriots went to the polls on Sunday in a presidential
Greek Cypriots went to the polls on Sunday in a presidential election runoff seen as vital for future negotiations with the breakaway, self-declared Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus.

The runoff between ring-wing leader Ioannis Kassoulides, 59, and Communist Demetris Christofias, 62, follows a surprise defeat of incumbent Tassos Papadopoulos in the first round on February 17. Papadopoulos was the driving force behind Greek Cypriot opposition to a UN reunification plan in 2004. The plan was accepted by Turkish Cypriots, yet Papadopoulos said he would again oppose efforts to resurrect the plan.

Both Kassoulides and Christofias say they want to restart peace talks to reunite the island, which has been divided since a Turkish invasion in 1974 following a brief Greek-Cypriot coup.


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