Cyprus. Following talks between President Nicos
Anastasiades and Russian Federation President Vladimir
Putin, an agreement was reached in February which meant that
the Russian fleet had access to Cypriot ports. According to
Putin, the main purpose was to fight terrorism and piracy.
The Russian Federation was in conflict with the EU because
of the conflict in Ukraine but sought cooperation with
individual EU countries.
COUNTRYAAH, the last of the capital controls introduced in connection
with the financial crisis two years earlier was lifted in
April. Consequently, there was no longer any restriction on
transferring money to foreign banks.
When the Turkish Cypriots went to elections in April, the
incumbent president Dervis Eroglu was expected to be
re-elected. He also received the most votes in the first
round of elections, but was unexpectedly defeated in the
second by independent leftist politician Mustafa Akinci, who
received 60% of the vote.
The election results boosted hopes of a fresh start in
the peace talks that were stranded last fall, as Akinci
appeared to be significantly less hawkish than Eroglu.
Shortly after the election, the new Turkish Cypriot
president also met Anastasiades and promised, among other
things, to abolish the visa requirement for Greek Cypriots
who want to visit the northern, Turkish Cypriot part of the
island. In September, for the first time, a meeting was held
in which religious leaders on both sides participated and
expressed their support for the peace process and towards
the end of the year, Anastasiadis and Akinci met regularly.
UN mediator Espen Barth Eide expressed confidence in the
near reunification of the shared island.