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Cyprus Mail: News Articles in English, 00-05-21

Cyprus Mail: News Articles in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Cyprus Mail at <>

May 21 , 2000


  • [01] Stop-list to be trimmed by 50,000 names
  • [02] Matsakis held after Bases demo
  • [03] Disy branches out into trees
  • [04] Vets on distemper awareness campaign
  • [05] The icing on the cake for Paphos
  • [06] Biased history books under fire
  • [07] Holger stresses importance of bicommunal contacts
  • [08] News in brief

  • [01] Stop-list to be trimmed by 50,000 names

    By Martin Hellicar

    THE GOVERNMENT has decided to take some 50,000 people off the island's stop- list, which currently stretches to 67,000 names, including those of many former Eoka fighters and dead and elderly persons.

    The names of Europeans deported for working illegally and of Cypriots wanted for evasion of VAT payments will also be removed from the list.

    The drastic trim was recommended by a ministerial committee and approved by the cabinet in order to cut the hours-long wait tourists often have to endure at local airports and ports.

    The British, who introduced the stop-list during colonial times, placed the names of many Greek Cypriot Eoka fighters on it. Most of these names have simply never been removed.

    Apart from the names of dead persons, the ministerial committee also recommended that the names of all those over 70 be struck from the stop- list. All names placed on the list more than 30 years ago are also to go.

    Cypriots owing VAT payments to the tax office need no longer worry about being stopped, and the same goes for any European Union or Swiss citizen deported for working illegally on the island.

    But the same leniency towards illegal workers will not be shown to non- Europeans.

    The names of citizens from countries considered to belong to a ‘high risk’ category for terrorism or illegal employment will remain on the list.

    Also to stay are the names of any persons wanted by police.

    The names will be removed for a trial period until October 15 this year, after which the decision will be reviewed by the cabinet.

    © Copyright Cyprus Mail 2000

    May 21 , 2000

    [02] Matsakis held after Bases demo

    By Athena Karsera

    DIKO deputy Marios Matsakis was yesterday afternoon being held in British Bases police custody at Episkopi after blocking a road during a demonstration against the Red Arrows.

    Bases spokesman Rob Need told The Sunday Mail he could confirm "a person has been arrested for an offence" after Antenna news showed footage of Matsakis' arrest at RAF Akrotiri.

    He said that an initially peaceful demonstration against the RAF display team flying over Limassol had resulted in some demonstrators blocking a road, "which is an offence".

    "The person being held was repeatedly asked to move," Need said, adding that no other arrests had been made. "Evidence has been collected, car number plates and so forth, so more people may be called in."

    About 10 Limassol residents accompanied by Matsakis, who is a deputy for the town, staged the demonstration at approximately 3pm. It ended after Matsakis was arrested about 45 minutes later.

    Need said that a letter complaining about the Red Arrows flying over Limassol was handed in to a Bases representative before the arrest, and that it appeared to be a copy of one recently sent to the British High Commission in Nicosia.

    © Copyright Cyprus Mail

    May 21 , 2000

    [03] Disy branches out into trees

    DISY has launched an environmental awareness campaign and a group of party members was yesterday morning out preaching the virtues of forest protection.

    The governing party set up a stall in Nicosia's Eleftheria Square from where leaflets on forest preservation were handed out to the public.

    The initiative was bolstered by party leader Nicos Anastassiades putting in an mid-morning appearance at the stall.

    © Copyright Cyprus Mail

    May 21 , 2000

    [04] Vets on distemper awareness campaign

    By Athena Karsera

    DOG OWNERS who have kept their pet’s inoculations up to date should not be concerned about them coming down with distemper, the Pancyprian Veterinary Association said yesterday.

    In an announcement aimed at preventing distemper outbreaks in dogs, the Association said that current vaccinations against distemper were more effective than ever before.

    "Dog owners who have vaccinated and vaccinate their animals in accordance with the programme provided by their veterinarian should not be concerned because their pets are in no danger," it said.

    The association said that even though outbreaks were common among unprotected dogs at this time of year, "in the few cases where vaccinated dogs coming into contact with the disease are stricken with the illness, the symptoms in these cases are mild and the majority of the cases are curable".

    The association said that distemper attacked dogs' central nervous systems and could be diagnosed in the early stages with symptoms such as a high temperature and an unpleasant discharge from the eyes and nose.

    A stricken animal will then develop symptoms such as gastroenteritis and pneumonia as a result of bacterial infections.

    The final stage of the disease sees symptoms such as partial or complete paralysis and ends in death.

    The illness can continue from around ten days to several weeks, during which the affected animal remains contagious to other dogs.

    The disease is passed on mainly through a sick dog's excrement and does not affect humans.

    © Copyright Cyprus Mail

    May 21 , 2000

    [05] The icing on the cake for Paphos

    PAPHOS has officially entered the Guinness Book of Records as the baker of the world's largest Christmas cake.

    While the confection was actually a traditional New Year's ‘Vassilopitta’, Guinness' confirmation of the win arrived at Paphos Municipality on Friday.

    The 114-metre long 1,900-kilogram cake was made during the town's millennium celebrations in a joint Paphos Municipality and Morello Confectionery effort.

    Early last December Limassol had been the first to publicise an attempt to break the former record, which was held by Mexico, but it then pulled out when Paphos Mayor Phidias Sarikas said that his municipality had been planning the attempt for months.

    © Copyright Cyprus Mail

    May 21 , 2000

    [06] Biased history books under fire

    By Noah Haglund

    Teachers and students from the two sides of the Green Line demanded history teaching fair to both communities during yesterday's bicommunal seminar at the Ledra Palace.

    The Bicommunal Teachers Training Centre hosted ‘History: How Do We Teach it, How Should It Be Taught?’ with support from the Fulbright Commission in order to promote inter-communal peace through education.

    First on the podium were two students, one Greek Cypriot and one Turkish Cypriot, who criticised what they had been taught in school.

    Dimitris Tsaousis, 17, asked why so much "blind gut hatred" exists among his Greek Cypriot peers, none of whom was even born at the time of the invasion.

    He laid the guilt for this prejudice on a politicised education system that demonises one side and naively praises the other.

    Turkish Cypriot student Erol Suleymanoglu pointed out that Cypriot history is written by Greece and Turkey for each country's own political ends, harming the identity of Cypriots.

    "Two histories can be factually true, but lie in the end," remarked University of Cyprus political science professor Yiannis Papadakis.

    He explained that Greek textbooks cite the 12th century BC colonisation of the island to proclaim its Greekness, while Turkish textbooks begin with the Ottoman period to argue that the island belongs to Turkey.

    Ahmet An, a teacher from the north, cited a study that found more than 50 per cent of secondary school textbooks in Greece portray Turkey negatively, while more than 50 per cent of Turkish textbooks refer to Greece as an "enemy".

    One solution to this problem, advised An, is to have an independent outside group aid in writing history books. This has already happened in other areas racked by regional prejudices, such as Latin America and Scandinavia, and a similar effort has also begun in the Balkans.

    © Copyright Cyprus Mail

    May 21 , 2000

    [07] Holger stresses importance of bicommunal contacts

    By Athena Karsera

    ENCOURAGING more contact between the two communities could play an important role in finding a solution to the Cyprus problem, according to the UN special-representative to Cyprus.

    In a lecture on ‘Building Bridges in Cyprus’, acting special representative of the UN Secretary-general James Holger said contacts between Greek and Turkish Cypriots helped to cultivate mutual understanding.

    "Building bridges means opening up avenues of communication, establishing joint projects of bicommunal co-operation, bringing down walls of suspicion and mistrust, and removing obstacles that prevent dialogue," he said.

    Holger said that bicommunal events organised in Cyprus and overseas generate "a base of human contacts between people who have to share the same island and, because of this geographical imperative, must tolerate each other and better yet understand each other".

    In his lecture in Nicosia on Friday night, which was organised by the Ihsan Ali Foundation, Holger said that "Dr Ihsan Ali's ideals of mutual understanding, tolerance and friendship are reflected in many international human rights agreements".

    Holger said many of the ideas had been raised by leaders of both communities but that "good words should obviously be followed by deeds, something which does not always happen".

    He said that the Foundation stood for noble objectives but for these objectives to be met by all, "prejudices and distortion of history" would have to be done away with. He said school text books still contained "a heavy load of distorted material in their accounts of the past".

    He also referred to a suggestion by Foundation chairman Ozdemir Ozgur for Greek and Turkish to be made compulsory subjects for schools in both communities.

    Holger said that the new millennium had brought clear indications that Cyprus was moving towards Europe, "hopefully as a united entity", and that accession would benefit all Cypriots "perhaps the Turkish Cypriots most of all".

    While the EU accession process and good offices mission of the UN Secretary- general were separate, he said, both both touched on the substance of the Cyprus problem and reinforced each other.

    "Bicommunal contacts are, in this context, a kind of supporting pillar of both processes, a very necessary one since it builds up the base of mutual understanding to move forward on these two fronts."

    © Copyright Cyprus Mail

    May 21 , 2000

    [08] News in brief

    Highest ever damages award

    A NICOSIA court has ordered a construction firm to pay a record £386,000 in compensation to a 22-year-old man confined to a wheelchair after a workplace accident in October 1995.

    Nicos Charalambous, from Tseri outside Nicosia, suffered severe head injuries after a fall while working on a Nicosia building site for Panayides Constructions Ltd. He was 17 at the time.

    Charalambous has been unable to walk unaided since the accident and needs daily physio and speech therapy.

    The Nicosia District court last week found that Panayides Constructions acted negligently when tasking Charalambous, an unskilled labourer, to erect scaffolding around a block of flats. Charalambous fell from the scaffolding.

    The £386,000 awarded to Charalambous is the highest damages claim ever awarded by a local court.

    Coastguard on boat people alert

    THE COASTGUARD was yesterday put on alert after Interpol warned that some 5, 000 boat people might try to put ashore in Cyprus or Greece en route to Italy.

    Interior Minister Christodoulos Christodoulou vowed the illegal immigrants would not be allowed to set foot on the island.

    The arrival two years ago of a boatload of more than 100 half-starving Arab and African immigrants heightened public and state concern about illegals. Many of the immigrants had to be put up in a Limassol hotel for months on end as the government tried to find countries to accept them.

    Paralimni woman on drug charge

    A 28-YEAR-OLD Paralimni woman was yesterday charged with drug possession after apparently admitting to receiving hashish in the post.

    According to a police report, drug squad officers found six grammes of hashish in the woman's flat after a search yesterday morning. The suspect told the officers she had been sent the illegal drugs through the post by a friend living abroad, police said.

    The 28-year-old was later charged and released.

    Mystery death of Finnish tourist

    A 23-YEAR-OLD Finnish woman holidaying in Protaras died on Friday night after suffering severe stomach pains and constant vomiting.

    According to police, the tourist was rushed to an Ayia Napa clinic at about 7pm on Friday, but she died a few hours later.

    Police said there were no external signs of injury on the woman's body.

    An autopsy to determine the cause of death is to be carried out tomorrow.

    Burglars in jewellery heist

    LARNACA POLICE were yesterday searching for burglars who got away with jewellery worth £20,490 after breaking into the home of a Russian businessman.

    The businessman reported to police that the burglars had entered his home on the Kamares estate outside Larnaca by forcing the aluminium back door. The stolen valuables were not insured.

    © Copyright Cyprus Mail

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