UN Envoy Eide Admits Cyprus Unity Deal Long Way Off

A Cypriot military guard post flies a Greek, left, and Cypriot flags next to a Turkish military guard post with Turkish, second right, and Turkish Cypriot breakaway flags, between UN buffer zone, in Nicosia, Cyprus, Tuesday, Jan. 17, 2017. (AP Photo/Petros Karadjias)

NICOSIA (AP) — A United Nations envoy says progress has been made on a compromise formula regarding how security will be enforced after ethnically divided Cyprus is reunified.

But Espen Barth Eide told the AP there’s still “a long way to go” on a structure meeting the security concerns of rival Greek and Turkish Cypriots, as well as the east Mediterranean island’s “guarantors” — Greece, Turkey and Britain.

Eide said after talks with Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades Feb. 15 that the U.N. is assisting in “structuring” the deal.

The complex issue of security has long stumped peace talks. Breakaway Turkish Cypriots insist on keeping Turkish troops and granting Turkey intervention rights in a reunified Cyprus, something which Greek Cypriots reject.

Cyprus was split in 1974 when Turkey invaded after a coup aimed at union with Greece.