The Birth of a Republic, But Not of a Nation: The Case of State-Building in Cyprus

Nikolas Kyriakou, Nikos Skoutaris

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Abstract

The principle of bicommunality has been advanced as a founding feature of state-building in Cyprus. The aim of this article is to provide a systematic account of the different variations of the bicommunal principle enshrined in the Constitution of the Republic of Cyprus and in the Annan Plan as the most comprehensive proposal for the reunification of the island. In order to achieve its scope, the article focuses on the provisions concerning state institutions and citizenship. It argues that, in all those constitutional structures, state-building is not linked with nation-building. In fact, the acceptance of bicommunalism as a fundamental principle of the united Cyprus proves that the main concern has been the accommodation of the political tensions resulting from a divided society.

“The only thing that is truly Cypriot are Cyprus donkeys.”

Rauf Denktas, former leader of the Turkish Cypriot communit
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)456-477
Number of pages22
JournalNationalism and Ethnic Politics
Volume22
Issue number4
Early online date2 Nov 2016
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2016

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