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Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 12-02-20

Cyprus News Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Cyprus News Agency at <http://www.cyna.org.cy>


CONTENTS

  • [01] Archbishop calls for restoration of St. Andrew`s Monastery
  • [02] Community leaders to meet again on Tuesday
  • [03] Samaras: Cyprus problem top priority
  • [04] Engage project for reconciliation launches Phase II

  • [01] Archbishop calls for restoration of St. Andrew`s Monastery

    Archbishop of the Church of Cyprus Chrysostomos II will be reporting the obstruction by the Turkish occupation regime of the maintenance of St. Andrew`s Monastery, and has called on the regime for the last time to allow restoration work, otherwise the Archbishopric would go ahead anyway at the risk of arrest.

    Speaking at a press conference, the Archbishop noted that key stones in apses have shifted and the monastery was in danger of collapsing, adding that the aim of the Turks was to let monuments collapse so that there is no trace of Greeks or Christians in the occupied areas.

    He also called on the people to avoid visiting the monastery until restoration begins.

    The Archbishop explained that key stones of the apse of the sanctuary`s hemispherical vault had shifted and the dome was in danger of collapsing.

    ``We are warning the occupation regime for the last time. Through the UN we will call on them to allow us to support this apse and any other worn parts of the church. If they do not allow maintenance, we will take builders to fix the apse without a permit and if they wish to arrest us, then let them arrest us. We will on no account let the church of St. Andrew collapse,`` he said.

    The Archbishop noted that this work should have been done a long time ago, and pointed out that Islamic monuments in the southern government-controlled areas of the Republic have already been restored.

    ``This is the last call to the occupation forces. Otherwise we will proceed with maintenance without them and they will be responsible,`` he added.

    Archbishop Chrysostomos II said ``we are ready to report this everywhere, at the UN, the EU and any fora we have access to,`` adding that it was urgent, since the apse of the sanctuary could collapse any minute.

    ``The occupation forces are trying to let anything Christian in the occupied areas collapse, as well as any Greek monument. They want the Greek and Christian monuments to disappear from the northern occupied areas so that the passing of Greeks and Christians is not evident,`` he added.

    [02] Community leaders to meet again on Tuesday

    The leaders of the two communities in Cyprus, namely President of the Republic of Cyprus Demetris Christofias and Turkish Cypriot leader Dervis Eroglu, will meet again on Tuesday, February 21, in the context of the UN-led direct talks to solve Cyprus problem.

    The meeting will take place at the Chief of Mission`s residence in the United Nations Protected Area of Nicosia and will begin at 10:00 am local time (08.00 GMT).

    Speaking after the last meeting of the two leaders, Special Representative of the UN Secretary General in Cyprus Lisa Buttenheim said that at their next meeting the leaders will discuss the property issue.

    [03] Samaras: Cyprus problem top priority

    The President of New Democracy Party of Greece Antonis Samaras has stressed that the Cyprus problem is a top priority for the Greek government, despite the huge difficulties his country is facing because of the economic crisis.

    Speaking after a meeting he had on Monday with the President of the Republic Demetris Christofias in the framework of his visit to Cyprus, Samaras said that “Cyprus and Greece are two independent states, however the two countries belong to the same nation”, adding that he feels truly moved being in Cyprus.

    He underlined the need for a solution to the Cyprus problem that will be viable and just and will end the island’s Turkish occupation.

    The President of New Democracy also said that during the meeting with President Christofias, they discussed the latest developments as regards hydrocarbon exploration in Cyprus’ Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ).

    [04] Engage project for reconciliation launches Phase II

    The ENGAGE - Do Your Part for Peace Project has announced the second phase of the project, which includes three active dialogue campaigns and a small grants programme that aims to engage NGOs, the wider public and the Media even more towards the rapprochement of the two main communities in Cyprus. According to a press release, the launching ceremony will take place tomorrow in Nicosia.

    Engage Phase II will be running until September of 2013 and will follow up on the work that it has been doing over the last two years towards the rapprochement of the two main communities in Cyprus. The project will introduce an advocacy and lobbying campaign, entitled, Active Dialogue Networks (ADNs), aiming to reinforce the efforts of Civil Society in both communities of the island to promote issues and recommendations pertaining to the need for policy change.

    Furthermore the Programme will run an active citizenship media campaign and a number of decentralised public events as part of its “ENGAGE On the Move” informative grassroots campaign. “ENGAGE on the Move” will visit various urban and rural areas and engage with the public in informative discussions and presentations about the role of Civil Society and its efforts towards reconciliation. The second phase of our Small Grants Programme will also be introduced, for NGOs and informal group initiatives based on the efforts of reconciliation. Further details about the Programme will be outlined during the ceremony.

    For the purposes of the ceremony the ENGAGE team has conducted three audiovisual interviews with the Representatives of the two leaders, George Iacovou and Kudret Ozersay, and the Special Representative of the Secretary General of the UN, Lisa Buttenheim. The three representatives give the positions of each side on the role and impact of Civil Society on the peace process and reconciliation in Cyprus. The interviews will be screened to the public during the event and will be available to the wider public in the following weeks.


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