The DP, the second-largest party in the north’s three-party ruling coalition, is considering leaving the ‘government’, it was learned on Thursday.

The party’s congress is to convene on Thursday with the possibility of withdrawing from the ‘government’ on its agenda, with announcements reportedly to be made on Thursday evening.

Party leader and the north’s ‘deputy prime minister’ Fikri Ataoglu is not present at the meeting, which will instead be chaired by its general secretary Serhat Akpinar. However, it is understood that Ataoglu will implement whatever is decided at Thursday’s meeting.

The DP has long been the kingmaker in Turkish Cypriot politics and has spent 19 of the last 30 years in ‘government’, forming coalitions with no fewer than five different parties.

Their current stint in ‘government’ began in 2020 under UBP ‘prime minister’ Ersan Saner. They have since stuck by the side of the UBP through two more ‘prime ministers’, namely Faiz Sucuoglu and incumbent Unal Ustel.

Should they elect to leave ‘government’, the ‘government’ would not automatically collapse, but it would leave the remaining two parties with a ‘parliamentary’ majority of just two.

In addition, it would mean the UBP would be reliant on the increasingly volatile YDP to pass legislation. The YDP is set to hold a party leadership election this month, with its two leadership candidates Erhan Arikli and Talip Atalay in open conflict with one another.