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Leaders Of Divided Cyprus Resume Peace Talks

Then-UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon (center) poses with Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci (left) and Greek Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades at peace talks in Switzerland in November.

The Greek and Turkish leaders of Cyprus have resumed UN-brokered peace talks.

The negotiations between Greek Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades and Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci in Geneva have been described as a historic opportunity to end decades of conflict on the divided island, but the outcome is far from certain.

"We are not at a point where Geneva will mark the final conclusion," Akinci said on January 8. "We need to be cautious."

Anastasiades tweeted that he was heading to the January 9 talks "with hope, confidence, and unity."

The previous round of peace talks ended in November without a breakthrough.

Cyprus has been divided since 1974, when Turkish troops invaded the island in response to an Athens-inspired coup seeking union with Greece.

Turkish Cypriot leaders later declared a breakaway state in the north that is recognized only by Ankara.

The Greek Cypriot side is recognized internationally as EU-member Cyprus.

Based on reporting by AFP and dpa