The Municipality of Famagusta posthumously honored the victims of the invasion of the city and province
In a modest ceremony in the presence of the President of the Republic Nikos Anastasiadis, organized by the Municipality of Famagusta, on Friday night, the Greek Cypriots and Greek officers and hoplites who fell heroically fighting in the city and province of Famagusta were posthumously honored. in 1974.
The event, entitled "Tharsein Chrys", took place at the Cultural Center of the Municipality of Famagusta in Deryneia.
Welcoming the public, the Chairman of the Cultural Committee of the Municipality of Famagusta, Nikos Karoullas, stated that “it is with awe that we undertook to fulfill an obligation of the many that have been left unfulfilled by the Cypriot society and the Cypriot state. Maybe in order for redemption to come, we must also complete our debt. Humble, by apologizing for our deafening absence, united, away from our passions and personal smallness to reunite our homeland ".
He added that "memories are painful, wounds are open, thinking is always there, in people, in those places and times".
Referring to the sculpture created "for these special people" the sculptor Filippos Giapanis, described it as "a special work", explaining that the laurel leaf is the symbol of honor and glory, the hand represents solidarity and help to them their own people, the hand we did not reach out and the tearful silent cry of the people who lost their own ”.
In his speech, the Mayor of Famagusta Alexis Galanos said:
"Tonight in a modest ceremony, just a few meters from the hated barbed wire that separates us from our beloved Famagusta, we honor 42 years later - and we apologize for that - all the young men who gave their most valuable asset, their own lives for the homeland. We honor our Levantines who defended the city and province of Famagusta that black summer of 1974 ".
We commemorate our heroes today, he continued, “we remember and honor them. We must, however, remember that our country has been groaning under the boot of the conqueror for 42 whole years. "Remember our debt to our heroes, to future generations, to our long history and to our great culture."
He added that "Famagusta is the key that will open the door to hope, that will open the door to the Cyprus of the future. The Municipality of Famagusta with various events and activities in Cyprus and abroad works both to preserve the lime of the memory and the desire for return as well as for enlightenment all over the world ".
He described the event as special and expressed his regret for the fact that “despite our efforts, it was not possible to locate relatives for all our heroes. We express our apologies but unfortunately the relentless time left its marks even in this effort of ours ".
Alexis Galanos also stated that “the efforts made today by the President of the Republic, the political leadership but also the Mayor and the Municipal Council of Famagusta must succeed. "Resolving a viable solution that can be accepted by the Cypriot Hellenism is our greatest responsibility, because a solution is the only way to rid our country of the occupation troops and to stop the path to division."
We all hope, he concluded, "to be close today to the day when our children will live free in a reunited Cyprus, without occupying troops and a future that will give prospects for progress and prosperity."
The total number of casualties during the Turkish invasion of 1974 is 60.
57 Greek Cypriots and three Greeks, however, managed to locate the relatives of about 36 heroes, the list of which was given by the Ministry of Defense.
The relatives received from the President of the Republic and the Mayor of occupied Famagusta the sculpture created by Filippos Giapanis.
The event was preceded by the laying of wreaths by the President of the Republic, the Metropolitan of Constantia and Famagusta, a representative of the Ambassador of Greece to Cyprus and the Mayor of Famagusta.
The event was attended by, among others, the Metropolitan of Constantia - Famagusta, Mayors and Commonwealths of free and occupied Famagusta, military and state authorities and many people.