U.S.-Cyprus partnership stronger than ever, says Trump

U.S. President Donald Trump said on Tuesday that Washington remains firm in supporting efforts to reunify the island of Cyprus, saying “the partnership between the United States and the Republic of Cyprus is stronger than ever”, the Greek Reporter website said.

Trump’s congratulatory message arrived on Cyprus Independence Day, marking the island’s 58th anniversary of independence from the United Kingdom. Cyprus has been divided since 1974, when Turkish troops invaded the north in response to a short-lived Greek Cypriot coup aiming to unite the island with Greece.

The Turkish Cypriot statelet in the north of the island is recognised only by Turkey. The rest of the world recognises the Greek Cypriot-dominated Republic of Cyprus as having sovereignty over the whole island.

“The continued strengthening of our bilateral ties will ensure the stability of the eastern Mediterranean region and foster increased economic, security and energy development,” the Greek Reporter quoted Trump as saying.

Tensions have escalated between Turkey, Greece and Cyprus this year due to issues such as sovereignty over airspace and Greek Cypriot attempts to explore for hydrocarbon reserves in the eastern Mediterranean.