The north’s statistics institute released its population projection for 2022 on Monday, claiming there are just 399,727 people living in the north.

This projection is a world away from estimates made by others in frontline Turkish Cypriot politics.

Ruling coalition party DP ‘MP’ Serhat Akpinar had said earlier this month that the north’s population is one million, and had later told the Cyprus Mail that the north “must limit and stop” its handing out of ‘citizenships’ to stem its rapid population growth.

Meanwhile, Turkish Cypriot Mukhtars’ Association chairman Akay Darbaz had said the population is over a million.

He said he had concluded on that figure following a series of interviews conducted with mukhtars from across the north and described the north’s population growth as “scary”.

The statistics institute’s projection is close to that of Turkish Cypriot Leader Ersin Tatar, however, who said in November that the north’s official population is 410,000.