Sunday, 20 July 2014

40th Anniversary of Turkish Invasion of Cyprus

Turkish troops intervened on Cyprus in 1974, in response to a military coup by Greek Cypriot officers who sought union with Greece. In the ensuing chaos, up to 200,000 Greek Cypriots fled from their homes in the north. Since then, more than 500 churches have been under Turkish control. Some have been destroyed, many ransacked - icons and frescoes have disappeared into scattered private collections. It is one of the most systematic examples of the looting of art since World War II.
The Turks say they would do more to help [protect these monuments] - if they were not under international embargo. Any international aid to Cyprus has to be channelled through the Government in the south, and the Turkish Cypriot authorities refuse to accept its legitimacy. "As you know, because of the politically unrecognised conditions of northern Cyprus we are facing lots of problems", says Hassan Tekel, the director of antiquities in the Famagusta region. "For example, we don't have any international support, not even from Unesco."

For a brief timeline:  Greek Reporter, 'Shocking Photos for 40-Year Anniversary of Turkish Invasion of Cyprus – Timeline of a Crisis', Jul 20, 2014 

1 comment:

kyri said...

hi paul the truth is the turkish authorities were quite happy to see the north of the island systematically striped of its greek hellenistic culture both ancient and modern and not only turnd a blind eye but actively encouraged it in my opinion.

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