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Conference Proceeding

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Cyprus -- Ethnic relations, Greeks -- Cyprus -- History, Turks -- Cyprus -- History, Ethnic conflict -- Cyprus, Cyprus -- Politics and government, Cyprus -- Social conditions


Mathematicians posited that a “butterfly effect”might be present in complex interactions. Relationships between Power Transition in Europe, the future of European Union’s (EU) Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP), and protracted Cyprus conflict are examples of this phenomenon. On the one hand, findings from Power Transition analysis indicate significant shift in global and regional hierarchies where the EU is expected to fall behind its global competitions –namely China, the United States, and India (Tammen et al, 2000; Yesilada, Efird, and Noordijk 2006). On the other hand, closer this “rising threat of China” can be postponed by a deeper degree of cooperation between the US and US, which includes economic and security integration (i.e., EU-NATO partnership in CFSP). Yet, this desired deepening of security ties between Transatlantic Allies depends on how EU-Turkey relations evolve which, in turn, is partially held hostage by the Cyprus problem. All this represents nothing short of a big headache for policy makers of Western allies. Therefore, the implications of a continuation of the status quo in Cyprus go far beyond what most observers assume – Greek-Turkish relations. Settling the Cyprus problem might be desirable in and of itself, but analysis in this paper demonstrates that the unforeseen consequences of a failure to solve this problem goes far beyond its borders, affecting future of the EU in its competition with other world powers beyond 2050.


Paper prepared for presentation at the 2011 Annual Conference of the International Studies Association in Montreal, Canada. March 16-20.

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