Conversations Across the Divide

Led by Harry Tzimitras
Jan 2015 -


This project aims at fostering knowledge exchange and journalistic dialogue from both sides of the divide in Cyprus as well as Greece and Turkey. In early 2000, PRIO was instrumental in establishing a Dialogue Forum, a bicommunal group of opinion shapers from both sides of the island, including academics, businesspersons, and journalists. It proved to be important during the lead-up to the 2004 Annan Plan referendum to have such regular meetings, inviting experts to talk about a developing, progressing process. This and subsequent experience showed that reception of any given plan is shaped by the available information and public discourse and debate. Moreover, having adequate and more in-depth information about the other community changes perceptions and prepares the ground for peace. With this in mind, the PCC has developed a journalists' network, with practitioners from both sides of the island, as well as from Greece and Turkey, who meet regularly to discuss current events. The meetings have also been serving as a venue for presentation of PCC research on issues related to the process and the major themes of the negotiations, as well as for the presentation of relevant research by other invited speakers.  This has already aided in the process of peacebuilding by enabling public debate around critical issues and publicizing the results of research.

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