The month of July has been quite constructive in addressing difficulties in the framework of the Cyprus talks, President of the Republic, Nicos Anastasiades, said on Tuesday.
The President was speaking to the media, at the Presidential Palace, upon his return from the meeting he had with Turkish Cypriot leader, Mustafa Akinci, in the framework of the UN-led talks for a solution to the Cyprus problem.
The meeting, the President said, was constructive and focused on internal security issues and jurisdiction.
Through the dialogue, he added, each side understands better the concerns of the other side and through a constructive contribution, improvements and progress are achieved.
Asked whether the two sides reached any convergences today, he said there have been some but refrained from elaborating.
The leaders will meet again on Friday, 29th of July. According to President Anastasiades during that meeting they will exchange general views on the issues of territorial adjustments, security and guarantees and properties.
“I have to say that especially July has been quite constructive in addressing, in solving difficulties that seemed for many times as insurmountable”, he stressed.
Replying to questions, the President said that after the summer break there will be a new intensified round the last ten days of August and the first ten days of September.
Asked if the Greek Cypriot side is satisfied with the resolution for the renewal of UNFICYP`s mandate (UN Peacekeeping Force in Cyprus), he said “I do not see what could cause problems either to our side or to any side”, adding that what matters is what is being done at the negotiating table.
Pointing out that there is a continuous progress on a series of issues, he said that nevertheless he can not give a positive note if the problems are not solved, including the properties chapter, the territorial adjustments, security and guarantees and other pending issues.
Asked whether the goal for a solution in 2016 is not within reach, he said that the goal and the wish is to achieve a solution this year but noted that this does not depend on our wish, it depends on the positions put forward at the negotiations.
Cyprus has been divided since 1974 when Turkey invaded and occupied its northern third. UN-led talks between Anastasiades and Akinci have been underway since May 2015, aiming to reunify the island under a federal roof.
Article written by CNA
Police are appealing for help to find an elderly man missing from Enfield.
Stylianos Sophokleous, 80, was last seen at approximately 08:00hrs on Saturday, 23 July when he left his home on Chatsworth Drive.
Mr Sophokleous is described as white, 5ft 9ins tall, of slim build with white hair.
When he was last seen, he was wearing a shirt and trousers.
Mr Sophokleous has dementia and may appear confused.
He is known to travel across the bus network.
Anyone who has seen Mr Sophokleous is asked to contact officers at Enfield via 101.
Article written by news.met.police.uk
As UN backed talks between the President of Cyprus Nicos Anastasiades and the Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci to reunite the island under a federal roof continue, Cyprus marks on Wednesday the 42nd anniversary of the 1974 Turkish invasion.
Cyprus pays tribute to all those killed during the invasion, which resulted in the occupation of the island’s northern third.
The political and religious leadership remembers and condemns the continuing illegal occupation of Cyprus’ northern part and holds memorials and other commemorative events in the southern government-controlled areas of the Republic.
Air-raid sirens sounded at 0530 local time (0230 GMT) when the Turkish invasion was launched and Turkish troops landed on the island`s northern shores.
In the morning, a memorial service for army officers and soldiers killed during the invasion takes place at Makedonitissa Tomb in Nicosia, in the presence of President Anastasiades.
A formal church memorial service is held at Faneromeni Church in old Nicosia, to be attended by the President and the political leadership. A series of other anti-occupation events will also take place during the day.
In the evening an event will take place at the Presidential Palace marking the anniversaries of both the coup and the Turkish invasion.
Political parties and other associations and groups have issued statements, condemning the Turkish invasion and the continuing occupation and reiterating their determination to fight for a just and viable solution.
Turkish troops invaded Cyprus on 20 July 1974, following a military coup that toppled the legal government of the Republic which was engineered with the Greek military junta.
In a two-phase invasion and despite repeated calls by the UN Security Council, Turkey occupied 37% of the sovereign territory of the Cyprus. Ankara continues to maintain some 40,000 troops in the northern areas of Cyprus, in complete disregard of appeals for their withdrawal and calls to contribute to a political settlement through peace talks.
The consequences of Turkey’s illegal aggression were devastating and are still felt by the Cypriot people: gross violation of human rights, with hundreds of people still listed as missing, Greek Cypriot refugees in anticipation of a solution that would allow them to return home, enclaved Greek Cypriots being deprived of fundamental rights and the island’s 9,000 year old cultural heritage being pillaged.
Article written by CNA
A builder form Regent’s Park has been sentenced to life in prison with a minimum term of 25 years for the rape and murder of a Cypriot teenager 34 years ago.
James Warnock, 56, strangled 17-year –old Yiannoulla Yianni in her own home in Belsize Road on August 13, 1982.
Warnock, who evaded justice for more than 30 years, was caught when his DNA was taken in December last year by Scotland Yard after he was arrested for sharing indecent pictures of children on the internet.
His DNA matched samples taken from the crime scene
In a statement, the family of the murdered teenager said: “For over half a lifetime, we have had to live with the daily torture of what happened to our daughter and sister Lucy.
“All who knew her, loved and adored her. Even through her death she deeply touched those involved in the investigation of her murder. We thank, from the bottom of our hearts, the police both past and present who have worked constantly and tirelessly to bring him to justice, especially those over the last six months. Our love and thanks to all who gave evidence and helped in this trial and to the family and friends who have supported us throughout.
“We now pray that we can move forward with the rest of our lives having some peace in knowing that her killer has been brought to justice and that a very dangerous man is no longer a threat to anyone else.”
Article written by LGR
British Cypriots once again demonstrated in great numbers at the annual ”Rally for Cyprus” in central London on Saturday 16 July, calling upon Turkey to end the 42-year long occupation of the northern part of the island.
The demonstrators gathered outside Turkey’s embassy, where a delegation of the rally’s organisers, the National Federation of Cypriots in the UK, led by its President Christos Karaolis delivered a resolution addressed to the Turkish Ambassador.
The resolution condemned the illegal Turkish invasion of 1974 and the ”unlawful and unjust military occupation and colonisation” of the northern part of Cyprus. ”Turkey must now change its intransigent stance on Cyprus and respond with positive actions to encourage progress in the direct negotiations taking place on the island towards a just and lasting settlement,” read the resolution text.
Speaking in front of the Turkish embassy, Mr Karaolis said: ”For 42 years Turkey occupies the northern part of Cyprus. We are here once again to send a message to the Turkish Ambassador and to Turkey, that enough is enough; now is the time for real deeds and not words to resolve to Cyprus issue.”
The Rally outside the embassy was followed by the annual march through central London, with the demonstrators holding Cypriot flags, banners and pickets and calling for a ”Free, United, Cyprus” and for ”Turkish troops to be removed from Cyprus”. GLA Member Andrew Dismore, Cypriot MEP Mr Takis Hadjigeorgiou and the Mayor of the occupied Town of Lapithos Mr. Neoptolemos Kotsapas also joined British Cypriots for the Rally.
Before this year’s Rally, 10,000 leaflets explaining the rights and demands of Cyprus were distributed at 15 central London locations with additional leaflets also distributed during the march.
Following the Rally, a delegation including Rt Hon Theresa Villiers, representatives of the Cypriot Women’s League, the leadership of the Federation, the Cyprus High Commissioner, H.E. Evripides Evriviades, and Greek Ambassador H.E. Konstantinos Bikas, laid a ‘Cyprus’ wreath at the Cenotaph.
Then the Federation President Mr Karaolis handed a letter addressed to the new Prime Minister of the UK Theresa May at the entrance of Downing Street. He was accompanied by the leadership of the Federation as well as the north London Conservative MP and long-standing friend of Cyprus Rt. Hon. Theresa Villiers. Mr Karaolis said that the letter congratulated Theresa May on her appointment and urged her ”to make sure that the Cyprus issue would be kept high on the political agenda of the UK.” As the letter to Mrs May pointed out, “you have the power to make a lasting difference in relation to Cyprus and now is the time to exercise this proactively and constructively.”
Theresa Villiers said: ”I have been campaigning for the freedom of Cyprus for 17 years. It is a great tragedy that Cyprus remains divided and I believe that it is crucial to keep on working hard for a negotiated settlement. We have a new Prime Minister in Britain, a whole new Government and a new Foreign Secretary and I will do whatever I can to make sure that Cyprus is high on their agenda. It is important to support the Cypriots to reach a lasting, balanced and just settlement to reunify the island and bring all of its people together once again.”
The President of the World Federation of Overseas Cypriots Andreas Papaevripides pledge on behalf of Cypriots abroad to keep fighting for Cyprus no matter how many years have passed – especially in the UK where the largest Cypriot overseas community lives. ”We will fight more than ever so that our positions are made known to the new UK Government,” he added.
Also at the rally were Federation officers and members of its Executive Bambos Charalambous (Federation Vice-President), Michael Kashis (Federation Vice-President), George Adonis (Federation Vice-President), Ninos Koumettou (Treasurer), Neophytos Nicolaou (General Secretary), Marios Minaides (President, Greek Orthodox Communities of the UK), Antonia Savvides (President, NEPOMAK), Michael Ellinas, Suzy Constantinides (Chair, Organising Committee), Menicos Kouvaros, Tony Vouros and veteran Executive Secretary Andreas Karaolis.
Article written by National Federation of Cypriots in the UK
The Greek-Cypriot press core in London hosted a dinner on Monday in honour of his Excellency Konstantinos Bikas (pictured below), Ambassador of Greece in the UK, who after four years of successful service in Britain will depart in a few days to his new post in Tel-Aviv.
Cyprus High Commissioner Euripides Evriviades also attended the function.
Left to Right-Standing: Doros Partasides (RIK),Mary Afxentiou(Parikiaki),Thanasis Gavos (RIK,CNA,SKAI), Michael Yakoumi (Parikiaki), Panagiotis Charalampous (LGR), Jan Manoulides (Distinguished Lawyer) – Seating: John Kyriakides (Executive Director-LGR), Evdoxia Lymperi (ERT), Euripides Evriviades (Cyprus High Commissioner), Konstantinos Bikas (Ambassador of Greece), Kyriakos Tsioupras (Veteran Journalist), Isaac Karypides (Ant1,Astra)
Article written by London Greek Radio
Andreas Leontas a Cypriot finalist walked away as the winner at this year’s X Factor Greek Final which aired on July 8th on Skai channel, which after some years rebooted the franchise for the talent format airing to the Greek public.
In the final which went on for 5-hours third place went to Stereo Soul and then we were left with the last two acts.
Giorgos Theofanous, the X Factor judge, was very buoyant with his two male acts being left in the competition.
The sing-off gave us our finalists Ian Stratis and Andreas Leontas, who gave us their song performances on the night.
Leontas, a Cypriot singer/song-writer born in Nicosia, who eventually piped his rival to the title, performed the song ‘Theos An Einai’. He beat off fellow finalist and subsequent runner-up Stratis who gave us his live version of the song ‘Gorilla’.
He won a record contract which resulted in him signing up to FeelGood Records and was given a car to drive away.
#XFactorGR has been a big part of the Greek television schedule every Friday night since the re-boot series was re-launched in February.
The host Sakis Rouvas again was a returnee, to the franchise.
The long-time judge, Cypriot song-writer Theofanous along with Peggy Zina, Tamta and Onirama lead-vocalist Thodoris Marantinis completed the judging panel line-up.
Backstage hosting was by Evaggelia Aravani.
We all at LGR wish him well and can’t wait to get our hands on his first single! A little teaser reveals his debut song, a definitely up-tempo Pop Laiko, called ‘Protos Rolos’.
Once we have it you’ll be certainly amongst the first to hear it on the LGR air-waves.
Article written by Tony Neophytou
On Sunday 17th July, fighter Giannis Skordilis, also known as GREEKBOY, will be fighting Alex Bublea in an intense kickboxing match the 02 Arena.
When speaking about the event, Giannis was keen to discuss his Greek background: “I am very proud of the fact that I get to represent the great country that is Greece in every way shape and form possible with respect, honour and strength in and outside the ring.”
During his Amateur fight career Giannis competed in more than 25 fights at national Greek level in which (5 years in a row) he won 1st place.
Since then Giannis left Greece and now trains at Storm Gym in Luton, the home of multiple world champion Andrew King Cobra Tate.
With the help of Chief Instructor Master Amir Subasic, Giannis won his first amateur fight which he says changed his life for ever.
Giannis recalls these years: “Of course many believe Greekboy happened over night but that was not my first fight name lol… it was feta cheese!”
He continues to talk about the start of his career: “On the 16th May 2015 I had my first professional fight in the UK on the biggest show in the country in the last at least 10 years or so and that at the prestigious Wembley Arena and SuperFight Series Championships. I won against a very talented Polish fighter in an amazing display of new skills that I learned at Storm Gym”.
Giannis has since continued his impressive career and between October 2015 to June 2016 he won another British Greek National Title and two European Titles at two different weight divisions. Giannis next outing will be at the 02 Indigo Arena on Sunday 17th of July. For tickets click here.
Article written by London Greek Radio
President of the Republic Nicos Anastasiades has once again apologized on behalf of the state for everything it should have done but failed to do so, to prevent the death of 13 people five years ago during a massive explosion at the naval base “Evangelos Florakis”, at Mari, on the southern coast.
The huge blast occurred on 11 July 2011 when a number of containers, full of munitions, which Cyprus had confiscated from “Monchegorsk“, a vessel sailing from Iran to Syria in 2009 exploded. As a result of the explosion and the shock wave that followed, the nearby Vassiliko power station suffered extensive damage that led to power cuts for some time after the blast.
More than 60 people were injured during the explosion.
Speaking at a memorial event at Mari, President Anastasiades assured the state will not allow similar mistakes to occur once again.
The President said that five years after the terrible disaster at Mari “we set aside our daily routine” as “today is a day for those who have positions of responsibility on this island, to reflect on how we were led to this tragedy”.
The conclusion, he added, is that “during this tragedy we lost 13 people, 13 professionals, heroes while the state exhibited unprecedented inadequacy and committed a number of repeated mistakes. Once again, we see that the worst decision is one that you put off because you are afraid to assume responsibility”, the President said.
Expressing respect for those who died, the President apologized for “everything that we ought to have done as a state and we did not” and assured that “we will not allow again such mistakes to be repeated and our country to witness similar tragedies”.
President Anastasiades said “accountability and professionalism should constitute the fundamental conditions on which a state operates on” and in this direction “we need to work towards a state that is responsible and maintains risk prevention policies at all levels”.
Remembering the youth of the National Guard, the members of the Fire and EMAK force who died while on duty, the President said “we share the pain and sorrow of the parents, spouses, children, siblings of those who tragically died bearing on their shoulders the political and administrative responsibilities of others”.
He said the chapel that the state has erected in the area is a reminder of the obligation of the state to honour those who sacrificed their lives. The chapel`s construction was funded by the Ministry of Finance and the Church of Cyprus designed the plans. Earlier, a memorial service was held for the victims of the disaster.
Nothing can alleviate the lack of their physical presence, said the President, but hoped that “this sacred site will become a spiritual relief for the relatives”.
Declaring the 13 men heroes, the President said the state has decided to provide support on a regular basis, to the spouses, parents and children of the deceased and injured of the 11th July 2011 explosion.
He also said that the Cabinet has decided to set up a committee that will monitor the problems that the relatives of the victims of the Mari explosion face.
Outside the chapel, a column with the names of the victims was placed as well as 13 individual crosses.
In the years that followed the blast, six persons, including two Ministers, were brought to justice. Four, including the then Minister of Defence, were given jail sentences in connection with the explosion on charges of causing death due to unreasonable or dangerous acts. The Minister of Defence was also found guilty of manslaughter due to neglect. The then Minister of Foreign Affairs was acquitted.
Article written by CNA
Morphou “is not and will never become a bargaining chip” says the Mayor of the Turkish-occupied city, Charalambos Pittas, in reply to statements from the Turkish Cypriot side.
Hüseyin Özgürgün, the self-styled “prime minister” of the illegal regime in the island`s Turkish-occupied north, has said recently that the return of Morphou is not on the table.
In a statement, Pittas condemned Özgürgün`s “arrogant behavior and the unacceptable provocative statements”, noting that they put in peril the ongoing effort for a Cyprus settlement and the country`s reunification.
He says, moreover that people from Morphou will in no case abandon their inalienable right to return to their homeland. Morphou is not property of Özgürgün but the lands are illegally held by force of arms, the Mayor adds.
The fait accomplis, following the 1974 Turkish invasion in Cyprus, give no right over our land to Özgürgün, to Mustafa Akinci`s illegal regime and to Ankara, Pittas says.
It is also noted that the Municipal Council of Morphou has unanimously decided to bestow honorary citizenship upon the President of the Hellenic Republic, Prokopis Pavlopoulos, handing over to him the key to the city during an event on Monday, July 11, 2016.
Article written by CNA