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Monday, August 31, 1998 Published at 15:05 GMT 16:05 UK

World: Europe

Cyprus confederation proposed

Turkish Cypriots in the breakway northern part of Cyprus have proposed forming a confederation with the internationally recognised Greek Cypriot government to resolve the twenty-four-year-old division of of the island.

The Turkish Cypriot leader, Rauf Denktash, said it was the last chance to prevent a permanent partition of the island.

But the Greek government has rejected the proposal, saying it would create two sovereign states.

Tension between the two sides has been increasing, with the planned delivery of Russian missiles to the Greek Cypriots later this year.

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