The history of Cyprus is one of the oldest recorded in the world. From the earliest times Cyprus´ historical significance far outweighed its small size. Its strategic position at the crossroads of three continents, as well as its considerable supplies of copper and timber combined to make it a highly desirable territorial acquisition..
Neolithic Period (8200-3900 BC) - Remains of the oldest known settlements in Cyprus date from this period. They can best be seen at Choirokoitia, just off the Nicosia to Limassol highway. At first, only stone vessels were used.
According to the Zurich-London agreements, Cyprus became an independent republic on 16 August 1960. As an independent country it became a member of the United Nations, the Council of Europe, the Commonwealth and the Non-Aligned Movement.
On 15 July 1974 the ruling military junta of Greece staged a coup to overthrow the democratically elected Government of Cyprus. On 20 July Turkey, using the coup as a pretext, invaded Cyprus, purportedly to restore constitutional order.