The “Republic of Cyprus” became an EU Member State on May 1, 2004, without a comprehensive
settlement of the Cyprus problem. The country became a member without having full control over all the
areas that it claimed to be under its jurisdiction, which contradicts the basic principles of the EU. This
admission also constitutes a clear and evident clash with the principles of international law on which it
is claimed that the EU is founded. By accepting the unilateral application of the Greek Cypriots, the
international agreements related to the sui generis situation of Cyprus have been discredited by the EU.
Moreover, with this decision, the final settlement of the Cyprus problem becomes more complicated than
before and Turkey-EU relations become more asymmetric in favor of the latter. Deriving from these
points, this article analyzes and demonstrates the paradoxes of the contradictory EU membership of the
RoC, which is the most controversial membership decision ever made within the EU. Furthermore, the
negative implications of this decision for the Cyprus negotiation process and on Turkey-EU relations
are also examined.
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