Survey Indicates Cypriots Want a Solution, Despite Pessimism
Nicosia, Apr 9 – Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots want the peace process that is underway in Cyprus to succeed, even if they appear pessimistic about its prospects.
This position is the result of a survey conducted by the Centre for European Policy Studies in Brussels and published on Wednesday, under the title “A People’s Peace in Cyprus: Testing Public Opinion on the Options for a Comprehensive Settlement.”
The survey was conducted on both sides of the divide in January and February with the participation of one thousand people.
The survey results show that by delving into the details of a Cyprus settlement, agreement is possible but it will be a hard sell to the people of both communities. What matters above all and more than the positions adopted by the leaders, political parties or external actors in and surrounding the Cyprus conflict is the substance of the proposed deal itself, with core issues of concern being, above all: security, property, governance, rights and freedoms, territory and settlers.
According to the survey, 56% of Greek Cypriots and 61% of Turkish Cypriots state they are not hopeful that the peace process will produce results. A total of 64% of Greek Cypriots and 65% of Turkish Cypriots express the wish that the leaders will reach a mutually acceptable settlement through the peace process.
Regarding the overall framework of a comprehensive settlement and considering each of the alternative settlement models, 80% of Greek Cypriots wants one unitary state and central government for the whole of Cyprus, while 71% of Turkish Cypriots want two separate and internationally recognized states.
A bizonal, bicommunal federation gathers 44% of the support of Greek Cypriots and 49% of Turkish Cypriots while the continuation of the current situation is preferred by 10% of Greek Cypriots and 33% of Turkish Cypriots.
Considering a hypothetical scenario where the negotiations between the two leaders conclude, a solution plan is drafted and a referendum is organized, and asked how both communities saw themselves voting in such a future referendum, 19% of Greek Cypriots and 30% of Turkish Cypriots replied they would certainly vote in favor, while 25% of Greek Cypriots and 29% of Turkish Cypriots said they would certainly vote no.
A total of 44% of Greek Cypriots and 21% of Turkish Cypriots are uncertain whether they would vote ‘yes’ or ‘no’ during a referendum.
Among the Greek Cypriots who would certainly vote ‘yes’ in a referendum are 24% of the Democratic Rally’s supporters, 21% of AKEL’s voters, 19% of the Democratic Party’s supporters and 16% of Socialist EDEK voters. Abstention reached 15%.
A total of 61% of the supporters of the Turkish Cypriot Republican Turkish Party would certainly vote ‘yes’ in a referendum, as well as 46% of the voters of the Communal Democratic Party, 11% of the Democratic Party and 16% of the National Unity Party.