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Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 08-08-07

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From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>




    More than one thousand Turkish Cypriots will cross to Kokkina on Friday through the government controlled area of the Republic as Greek Cypriots will stage a peaceful demonstration calling for the opening of Limnitis crossing.

    Deputy UNFICYP Spokesman Captain Thomas Pavlik told CNA that so far 1100 people will cross to Kokkina on Friday for their annual pilgrimage on buses and the UN will assist them because they are crossing the buffer zone.

    Asked if the Turkish Cypriots will allow the Greek Cypriots to visit next month the occupied church of Agios Mamas to celebrate the saints feast day, Pavlik said he had no information whether Turkish Cypriot side has taken a decision on the matter.

    The Turkish Cypriot side has yet to reply to a request from Greek Cypriots to visit the Church of Agios Mamas in occupied Morphou to pray on September 2.

    Cyprus has been divided since 1974 when Turkish troops invaded and occupied the islands northern third.

    Kokkina, a coastal village in northeast Cyprus, was the centre of intercommunal clashes in 1964, when Turkish air force planes bombed Greek Cypriot villages in the area. Kokkina is accessible only through the free areas of the Republic or by sea. Turkish Cypriots have been visiting Kokkina by land with the consent of the government of Cyprus.

    Presidential Commissioner George Iacovou told CNA that in a telephone conversation with Kato Pyrgos Community leader, he was informed on the Community Councils decision to allow the Turkish Cypriots cross from the Kato Pyrgos checkpoint to Kokkina, as well as the residents decision to stage a peaceful demonstration calling for the opening of the Limnitis checkpoint.

    I telephoned the UN, informed them on the new situation and that the checkpoint will be open for the Turkish Cypriots to cross and that there will be a peaceful demonstration with no problems, he said.

    Iacovou added that what remains is the UN to receive a reply on Thursday from the Turkish Cypriot side to the Greek Cypriot request for the Agios Mamas visit.

    For the past 45 years, Greek Cypriot residents in the area of Limnitis have to travel to Paphos, on the western coast, and Limassol, on the south, in order to reach the capital Nicosia. Opening a crossing point at Limnitis would make this journey far shorter. In the recent past, several crossing points to and from the islands northern Turkish occupied areas have opened to facilitate the movement of people.


    A partial eclipse of the moon will be visible in Cyprus during the late hours of August 16 and the early hours of August 17, a press release issued by the Meteorological Service has said.

    In the capital Nicosia, the moon will rise at 1922 local time on August 16 and will set at 0628 on August 17.


    Beijing opens its gates officially on Thursday to 11,500 athletes from 205 countries, the Olympic family, heads of state and government, as well as other officials, over 20,000 media representatives and around two million visitors, who have flooded the Chinese capital for the 29th Olympic Games, which begin on Friday.

    According to a Cyprus Olympic Committee press release, the 17-member Cypriot team is stronger than ever and hopes to gain distinctions in six disciplines, namely track and field, sailing, shooting, swimming, archery and weightlifting.

    Cyprus` flag bearer at Thursday`s ceremony will be George Achilleos, who arrived in Beijing on Wednesday. The teams along with the Chinese mascots will parade into the Bird`s Nest, with Cyprus in 196th place. Greece is traditionally first in the parade and the host country last.

    President of the Republic of Cyprus Demetris Christofias and President of the Cyprus Olympic Committee Kikis Lazarides are among the top guests at the event. Also present will be Minister of Education and Culture Andreas Demetriou, Government Spokesman Stephanos Stephanou and Director of the President`s Office Vassos Georgiou.

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