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Cyprus News Agency: News in English, 06-08-24

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

From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>


  • [01] FM - LEBANON - VISIT

  • [01] FM - LEBANON - VISIT

    Cypriot Minister of Foreign Affairs George Lillikas completed his one-day visit to Lebanon, pledging that Cyprus will become the centre for the transfer of humanitarian aid and peacekeepers to Lebanon.

    During his visit, Lillikas was received by Prime Minister Fouad Siniora.

    The Cypriot minister, who went to Beirut at the invitation of Siniora, also met his Lebanese counterpart Fawzi Salloukh.

    Speaking after meeting Salloukh, Lillikas pledged Cyprus will become the centre for transferring humanitarian aid to Lebanon but also for the transfer of UN peacekeeping forces.

    He said Cyprus ``decided to offer its airports, ports and other facilities to the UN, to the EU and also to other countries which want to participate in the peacekeeping force.``

    Salloukh praised Cyprus for the assistance it provided but also for the historic and warm relations between the two countries. He said Cyprus played a leading role and helped in the evacuation of Lebanese and non-Lebanese nationals.

    ``Now Cyprus is serving a noble cause, helping Lebanese nationals return to their countries and a leading role so that humanitarian aid will come to Lebanon,`` he added.

    Salloukh said his country was grateful to Cyprus, its people, President and government. ``We have excellent relations and the efforts we witnessed from the government of Cyprus show these warm relations,`` he added.

    Lillikas said Cyprus was the epicenter for the transferring of foreign nationals from Lebanon and received a total of eight thousand Lebanese people.

    Asked if Cyprus will participate in the UN peacekeeping force in the country, Lillikas replied that the participation will be at a ``symbolic level`` and explained that the country still has a serious problem with the Turkish invasion and occupation of the island`s northern third since 1974. ``Cyprus is still under Turkish occupation,`` he pointed out.

    Referring to his visit earlier Thursday to southern Beirut, Lillikas said ``the picture I saw reinforced my conviction that war does not build confidence between peoples but causes pain and destruction.`` The only way to solve problems, he added, is through dialogue and political means.

    Lillikas also met Orthodox Bishop of Beirut Elias Audi and was informed on the damage to Orthodox churches in the country.

    In his statements, Lillikas said Cyprus would like to help the Orthodox Metropolis of Beirut.

    He reminded the humanitarian aid already sent by the Cypriot people, the Paphos Bishopric and Kykkos Monastery.

    ``I think that in this way we are trying to be helpful to the people of Lebanon and generally towards the Beirut Metropolis,`` he said.

    Lillikas also attended a lunch hosted by leader of the ``Future Movement Bloc`` Sa`ad Hariri, son of assassinated former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafic al-Hariri, at the Parliament.

    He said they discussed the situation in Lebanon and the prospects after the Israeli bombing of the country.

    ``I hope that by the next time I meet Mr. Hariri, security and stability will prevail in Lebanon with the help of all,`` he added.

    Lillikas was accompanied by Director of Consular Affairs at the Cyprus Ministry of Foreign Affairs Omiros Mavrommatis, the Republic`s attache to Lebanon Kyriacos Kouros and Charalambos Hadjisavvas, Senior Advisor at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.


    Following months of intensive preparation, the Committee on Missing Persons in Cyprus (CMP) is launching its Project on the Exhumation, Identification and Return of Remains.

    A CMP press release said the Committee met with the Argentinean Forensic Anthropology Team (EAAF) at the Ledra Palace.

    An island-wide programme of exhumations will be carried out by a team of Turkish Cypriot and Greek Cypriot archeologists and anthropologists under the guidance of EAAF.


    One of the worlds most renowned opera houses, the State Academic Mariinsky Theatre, comes to Cyprus for only three performances that promise to offer a spectacle rarely enjoyed by opera lovers on the island, locals and visitors alike, combining elements reminiscent of a Shakespearean play where tragedy and comedy intertwine.

    The theatre of Saint Petersbourg will present Giuseppe Verdis Un ballo in maschera, described by opera circles as the most operatic of operas, at the medieval Pafos castle on 1, 2 and 3 of September in the 8th annual Pafos Aphrodite Festival.

    As Themis Filipides, general coordinator for the Festival, has said the final preparations are well underway and will be completed next week with experts putting the final touches to the stage that will host the action and the setting, all of which will be embellished by the professional hand of Russian stage managers and crew, due here in the coming days.

    The presence of the Mariinsky Theatre in Cyprus, he pointed out, is a very important cultural event, as the Theatre is among the top ten opera houses in the world and its participation in the Pafos Aphrodite Festival lays a heavy burden of responsibility on the shoulders of the organisers to ensure that everything runs smoothly.

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