British Cyprus (1914–1960)

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Crown Colony of Cyprus
British Military occupation (1914–1922)
British Crown Colony (1922–1960)


Flag of Cyprus

Flag (1922-1960)

Location of Cyprus
Cyprus in the 1930s. Cyprus in Dark Green and the United Kingdom in dark grey.
Capital Nicosia
Government Crown colony
 -  1914–1936 George V first
 -  1952–1960 Elizabeth II last
High Commissioner/Governor
 -  1914–1915 Hamilton Goold-Adams first
 -  1957–1960 Sir Hugh Mackintosh Foot last
 -  Annexation from the Ottoman Empire 5 November 1914 1914
 -  Independence 16 August 1960
Today part of  Cyprus
 Northern Cyprus Unrecognised
 United Kingdom
- Akrotiri and Dhekelia

Cyprus was part of the British Empire from 1914 as a Military occupation from 1914–1922 and a Crown colony from 1922–1960 to when it became independent in 1960.



Prior to 1914, Cyprus had been under British control as early as 1878 following the Russo-Turkish War, in which the British occupied the island as a consequence of the Ottoman Empire's actions throughout the duration of the war. Cyprus was then proclaimed a British protectorate and was integrated into the British Empire. This remained in place until November 1914, when after the Ottomans joined the Central Powers, in turn entering World War I, Britain declared the complete annexation of Cyprus into the British Empire, albeit under a military administration status. The colony of British Cyprus was proclaimed a decade later, in 1925, after Britain's annexation of Cyprus was verified twice, firstly in the Treaty of Sévres in 1920, then confirmed again in the Treaty of Lausanne.

Proposed union with Greece[edit]

King Paul of Greece declared that Cyprus desired union with Greece in 1948. A referendum was presented by the Orthodox Church of Cyprus in 1950, according to which around 97% of the Greek Cypriot population wanted the union. The Greek petition and enosis became an international issue when it was accepted by the United Nations.

Cyprus Emergency[edit]

Main article: Cyprus Emergency

The Cyprus Emergency was a military action that took place in Cyprus from 1955–1959. The Cyprus Emergency mainly primarily consisting of a armed campaign by the Greek Cypriot military group EOKA to remove the British from Cyprus so it could be unified with Greece.


After the Cyprus Emergency, the United Kingdom granted independence of Cyprus via referendum on 16 August 1960 and formed the Republic of Cyprus. Archbishop Makarios III, a charismatic religious and political leader, was elected the first president of independent Cyprus. In 1961 the republic of Cyprus became the 99th member of the United Nations.