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Cypriots are not always described simply as “Cypriots”. The word is often used together with the prefix “Greek” or “Turkish” in recognition of the two major ethnic groups that inhabit the island: the Greek-speaking Greek Orthodox community and the Turkish-speaking Muslims.

When Cyprus achieved its independence from Britain in 1960, the new Republic’s constitution defined the Greek and Turkish Cypriots as two separate ethnic groups. At that time, the members of both groups still co-habited in mixed villages and cities and purely Greek or Turkish villages were few. In the majority of cases, neighbours lived together in peace and celebrated their festivals together.

Then the events of 1974 split the island, and the two communities have not lived with each other for over 30 years.

Nevertheless, the two communities still have a lot of things in common: in the way they conduct their lives, their gestures, their food and drink. The Greek-Cypriots and Turkish-Cypriots on both sides of the Green Line are all Cypriots, after all.

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