10 April 2011

Cyprus and Greece

Cyprus Updates poses an intriguing question to its readers: What would an Enosis referendum results be today [sic]? Those favouring enosis wanted to annex the island to Greece.
In December 1949, the Cypriot Orthodox Church challenged the British colonial government to put the Enosis question to a referendum. As was expected, the colonial government refused, and the Church proceeded to organize its own referendum which would take place in churches and be supervised by priests. The referendum took place on the two consecutive Sundays of January 15 and 22, 1950, with an overwhelming majority 95.7% of the people, including Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots, voted in favor of extricating the island from the British Empire and annexing it to the Kingdom of Greece. It should be borne in mind that unlike modern elections and referendums which are decided by secret ballot, the 1950 referendum amounted to a public collection of signatures, not unlike a petition.

If Cyprus had been united with Greece, for ever after Cypriots would be complaining that they were being bled dry by the political élites in distant Athens for the latter's benefit. Cyprus is more prosperous than Greece, which is now on the verge of bankruptcy. Even dedicated enotists would be unhappy with Cyprus being no more than a far-away province of an economic basket case. Cyprus' independence has been a troubled one from the outset, but enosis would have been worse.

1 comment:

David Koyzis said...

If Cyprus were part of Greece, today there would be a Cypriot separatist party in the Greek Parliament, just like the Bloc québécois here in Canada.


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