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Close Turkish Cypriot election Effect leaves peace deal in the balance

The initial round of the Turkish Cypriot presidential election has generated a close result involving a single candidate favoring revived peace talks on Cyprus and the other needing closer ties with Turkey.

Unofficial results gave 29.8percent of the vote into the incumbent president Mustafa Akıncı, who’s running for another semester.

He arrived narrowly supporting the prime minister Ersin Tatar, who won 32.4 percent.

The candidates will face each other at another round election following week, leaving Turkish Cypriot voters to determine whether they need another effort to return the island or think separation is a much better path.

Cyprus has been split between its Turkish and Greek communities since 1974 when Turkey invaded in response to a coup that aimed to combine the island with Greece.

The northern part declared independence since the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus in 1983, but it’s diplomatically recognized only by Turkey.

Successive peace talks between the island’s two communities are ineffective.

Akıncı, a left-winger who would like to restart peace talks with Cyprus’s internationally-recognized Greek administration, has said that he expects that a deal could eventually be consented to reunite the island.

However, Tatar, a nationalist, supports closer ties with mainland Turkey and urges a two-state alternative.

He also controversially appeared alongside President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan a week to announce the reopening of this deserted city of Varosha, which had been mostly occupied by Greek Cypriots before it was inhabited by Turkish forces in 1974.

Eleven candidates in all contested Sunday’s first-round election, such as the former Turkish Cypriot peace negotiator Kudret Özersay, that came with 5.7percent of the vote.

The next round of this election will probably be held next Sunday, October 18.