Cyprus has a 112-mile buffer zone, a UN-controlled area that separates the northern portion, occupied by Turkey since 1974, from the rest of the island.
Nicosia, the island's biggest city, is divided by this so-called "Green Line." On one side, it's the capital of the Republic of Cyprus. The northern part serves as the capital of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus, a territory recognized by Turkey alone.
When Britain gave up possession of the island in 1960, political tension grew between Greek and Turkish communities in Cyprus. The island was eventually split in two after a failed coup by Cyprus's pro-Greece national guard and the Greek military junta of 1967–1974. Turkey responded with military action. Since a ceasefire, the island remains split in two.
After getting special permission from the UN, Reuters photographer Neil Hall was able to photograph the demilitarized zone in Nicosia where the buffer is most noticeable. There, one sees the remains of formerly bustling homes, shops, cars, and an airport, all left as they were 40 years ago but with few people other than UN patrols in sight: