Cyprus in the eastern Mediterranean is according
to legend the birthplace of the love goddess Aphrodite.
In reality, the island in modern times has been
characterized by animosity between Greeks and Turks.
After a Greek-backed military coup in Cyprus in 1974,
Turkey invaded the northern part of the island. Since
then, Cyprus has been divided into a Greek Cypriot
southern part and a Turkish Cypriot part in the north.
Brief profiles of Cyprus, including geography, history, politics, economics as well as common acronyms about this country.
Geography and climate
Cyprus, which on the surface is slightly
smaller than Östergötland, is the third largest island
in the Mediterranean. Geographically, Cyprus is most
closely associated with the Middle East, but for
political and cultural reasons, the island is usually
counted as Europe. To Turkey in the north, the distance
is at least 6.5 km, to Syria in the east it is almost 17
Formally and according to the UN, Cyprus is a single
state, but in practice since 1974 the island has been
divided into two parts - a Greek Cypriot in the south
and a Turkish Cypriot in the north. The Greek Cypriot
part comprises just under two thirds (63 percent) of the
Cyprus surface, the Turkish Cypriot part just over one
third (37 percent). Between the parts is a narrow buffer
zone monitored by the UN. The capital Nicosia is also
Cyprus has two major mountain areas. The Kyrenia
Mountains form a long, narrow chain along the north
coast and a bit out on the Karpasia peninsula in the
northeast. In the Troodos massif, which occupies a good
part of the hinterland in the south, lies the Olympus
mountains with the highest peak of the island at 1,953
While the Kyrenia Mountains have thin soil layers,
vegetation is more abundant in the Troodos massif, which
is covered by coniferous forests. Between these
mountains are the fertile plains of Mesaoria in the east
and Morfous plain in the west. From the Troodos massif,
in the winter, a number of smaller rivers that
completely dry out in the summer.
Cyprus has a typical Mediterranean climate with hot,
dry summers and mild, humid winters. Most precipitation
falls between November and March.
From the end of May to the middle of September, there
is hardly any rain. In the Troodos Mountains in the
south, the climate is more humid and considerably cooler
than in the rest of the country. There, snow falls
between December and March.
The proximity to the Asian mainland means that the
summer temperature can reach over 40 degrees in the
interior of Cyprus.
FACTS - GEOGRAPHY AND CLIMATE
9 251 km2 (2018)
Swedish +1 hour
Capital with number of inhabitants
Nicosia (Lefkoşa in Turkish) 238,000 in the Greek
Cypriot part (2014) and 57,000 in the Turkish Cypriot
Other major cities
In the south: Limassol 182 400, Larnaca 85 900, Pafos
64 300 (2014). To the north: Gazimagusa (Famagusta) 40
900, Girne (Kyrenia) 33 200, Güzelhurt (Morfou) 18 900
Olympus (in the Troodos massif, 1,953 meters)
Cyprus has no major rivers
Average Precipitation / month
80 mm (dec), 0 mm (july-sept)
Average / day
Nicosia 27 °C (July – Aug), 12 °C (Jan – Feb)
"Christofia responsible for the explosions"
An independent investigation holds President Christofia personally
responsible for the carelessness that caused the naval base explosions (see July
2011). According to the investigation, the president was aware of the risks of
keeping the weapons where they were located, but he did nothing about it.
Christofias rejects the charges.
Conflict about oil drilling
Greek Cypriots start drilling for oil and natural gas in the sea off Cyprus.
Turkey protests, claiming that the Turkish Cypriots must give their approval.
Turkey places its own oil drilling vessel off the north coast of Cyprus.
The President is reforming the government in the south
President Christofias is reshaping the government after the central party
Diko left the government coalition because of disagreement over economic policy.
Economy on the decline
The shortage of electricity is hitting hard on industry and business. At the
same time, Cyprus is involved in the Greek debt crisis. Credit rating agency
Moody's also lowers Cyprus's credit rating.
Many dead in naval base explosions
Thirteen people are killed and over 60 people are injured by a series of
explosions in a seized weapon load on a naval base. Among the victims are the
commander of the Navy. The country's largest power plant is knocked out as a
result of extensive electricity cuts. The defense minister resigns and the
government is reformed after receiving harsh criticism for negligence.
Government change in the south
The Conservative opposition party Disy hardly wins over the ruling Communist
Party Akel in the Greek Cypriot parliamentary elections.