Cyprus on Friday paid tribute to those who lost their lives defending freedom and democracy on the occasion of the 15-July 1974 coup d’ etat which paved the way for the Turkish invasion five days later. The President of the Republic noted that all those who fight against democracy are leading the country to extremes.
Speaking to the press following the annual memorial service, Nicos Anastasiades reminded all Cypriots that it was their duty to pay tribute to those who gave their lives defending freedom and democracy and to remember those who fought against extremism, the results of which we are still facing today.
"In the face of a revisionist and aggressive Turkey, it is now more important than ever to highlight the value of national reconciliation as a factor of political strength and national revival.”
Anastasiades also stated that the events surrounding the July 15th coup were nothing more than an organized action against the Republic by the Junta in Athens with Cypriots who conspired or cooperated and were ultimately tantamount to treason.
Christos Iakovou, Director of the Cyprus Centre for Strategic Studies (KIKEM) also gave a speech again remembering those who died and underscoring their sacrifice, at the same time, reminding everyone that the invasion would not have taken place had there not been a coup attempt. He said, "these days should be a day of reflection not only for the events that happened in the past but what should be done in the future and how to avoid the same mistakes that led to catastrophe and the quasi-occupation of our country.”
"In the face of a revisionist and aggressive Turkey", he added, “it is now more important than ever to highlight the value of national reconciliation as a factor of political strength and national revival.”