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Society

In a First, Rival Cyprus Leaders Offer Joint Holiday Wishes

NICOSIA — For the first time, the Greek and Turkish Cypriot leaders of the ethnically divided Mediterranean island of Cyprus took to the airwaves together to send out holiday wishes in both Greek and Turkish.

Greek Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades and breakaway Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci said during a televised message they hoped the new year ushers in a peace accord.

Anastasiades expressed hope that next year sees Greek and Turkish Cypriots living peacefully together again in a reunified Cyprus. Akinci said he hoped 2016 would bring lasting peace, calm and prosperity to all.

The messages aimed to reaffirm their commitment to reach a peace deal as negotiations enter their eighth month.

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

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