Cyprus - Country history and economic development

1500-1450 B.C. First traces of settlement on Cyprus. Some evidence suggests that the settlers were related to the peoples of Asia Minor (present-day Turkey).

1450-1000 B.C. Beginning of the Egyptian domination of the island.

1200-1000 B.C. Establishment of the city-states of Salamis, Soli, Marion, Paphos, Kurium, and Kyrenna; arrival of Greek colonists.

850-750 B.C. Phoenicians settle in several areas and share political control with the Greeks.

750-612 B.C. Period of Assyrian rule. The Assyrian king Sargon II conquers the 7 independent kingdoms on the island.

568-525 B.C. Period of Egyptian rule.

525-333 B.C. Period of Persian rule.

333-58 B.C. Period of Hellenistic rule by the heirs of the Alexander the Great.

58 B.C.-395 A.D. Period of Roman Empire rule.

395-1191. Period of Byzantine Empire rule.

1191-1192. Briefly ruled by Richard the Lionheart of England.

1192-1489. Period of Lusignan rule. Tensions between the Greek Orthodox Church and the Roman Catholic Church increase. The Cypriots remain loyal to their Orthodox heritage and by the middle of the 14th century the Latin clergy become less determined to convert the islanders.

1489-1570. Island is dominated by the Italian city-state of Venice.

1571-1878. Period of Ottoman Empire rule. The Ottomans grant land to Turkish soldiers and peasants who then become the nucleus of the island's Turkish community.

1878-1914. Cyprus is administered by Great Britain according to an agreement with the Ottoman Empire.

1914. Cyprus is annexed by Great Britain at the start of World War I.

1925. Cyprus becomes a British Crown colony.

1960. Foundation of the Independent Republic of Cyprus.

1963. Inter-communal strife in Cyprus between Greek and Turkish sectors leads to establishment of United Nations peacekeeping mission.

1974. Greek army officers stage coup d'état and overthrow President Makarios with the aim of uniting the island with Greece. Turkey intervenes and lands its forces on the northern part of the island, where they have remained ever since. The island is divided into a Turkish Cypriot northern zone and a Greek Cypriot southern zone.

1983. Turkish Cypriots proclaim the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC). Rauf Denktash is elected the president.

1987. The Republic of Cyprus signs a new association agreement with the European Union establishing a full customs union by 2002.

1996. Greece lifts its veto on Turkey's customs union with the European Union in exchange for a date for the commencement of negotiations to allow for Cyprus's membership.

1998. EU accession talks begin.

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