A village where Turkish & Greek Cypriots live side by side

Pyla is in the buffer zone, a demilitarised area between Greek Cyprus and the Turkish Republic in the north.

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

'Peace' reflected in a shop window in Nicosia, Cyprus, near the buffer zone. (January 26, 2017)

Pyla is a village that is in Cyprus but isn't taking sides. It's in the demilitarised zone between Greek Cyprus and the Turkish Republic in the north.

It's the only place on the island where Greek and Turkish Cypriots live side by side in large numbers.

Cyprus's two main ethnic groups have lived divided since a Greek-inspired coup prompted Turkey to send in forces as a guarantor.

In February 2014, Turkish Cypriots and Greek Cypriots agreed to revive peace talks, which had stalled for two years. Both sides are still negotiating on a reunification.

Recent talks in Geneva failed to produce a breakthrough over ethnically-split Cyprus. But the three stakeholders on the island - Turkey, Greece and Britain - agreed to keep working.

In Pyla, people are not waiting for the technocrats to solve their problems. Every day the leaders of the two communities meet. And they're committed to finding a solution.

TRT World ’s Andrew Hopkins has this report from Pyla.