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29 May, 2024
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Pyroi residents push for crossing point amid calls for unity

Cypriot village's demand for enhanced access gains momentum

Newsroom / CNA

Residents of the Turkish-occupied village of Pyroi in the Nicosia district have voiced their demand for a new crossing point, while the government indicates its endorsement for expanded communication between the island's divided communities. The government's support for multiple crossing points aims to foster connections while it continues to strive toward a comprehensive resolution to the Cyprus conflict.

On Wednesday, the Pyroi Community Council and "The Pyroi" Refugees Association delivered a petition to President Nikos Christodoulides and House of Representatives President Annita Demetriou. Speaking to CNA following the receipt of the petition on behalf of the President, Deputy Government Spokesperson Doxa Komodromou revealed that the submitted petition would be forwarded to the President for review.

Komodromou also disclosed that President Christodoulides recently engaged with the Committee of Municipalities located in government-controlled areas near the buffer zone, or partially occupied, to discuss their perspectives. A technical study will be initiated to address the suggestions and recommendations of these municipal leaders.

The government remains committed to establishing new crossing points to enhance interaction between the two communities. This effort is pursued in parallel with ongoing endeavors towards a comprehensive resolution, while Cyprus remains divided until a final resolution is attained.

Komodromou emphasized that establishing a crossing point in Pyroi would not only benefit the Larnaca district but also alleviate traffic congestion in the government-controlled areas of Famagusta. The improved travel connectivity would facilitate quicker travel to Nicosia, while also mitigating traffic congestion at the entrance to the city.

Komodromou highlighted the dramatic change in travel times, stating that the distance covered from Athienou to Aglantzia in 1974 in 7 to 8 minutes now takes over an hour.

The residents of Pyroi outlined their demands in their petition, including the withdrawal of troops from the village to facilitate the opening of the Nicosia-Larnaca road. This action would contribute to relieving congestion in Nicosia and connecting Nicosia and Larnaca through Pyroi.

They further emphasized that a Cyprus problem solution should align with democratic, just, workable, and financially viable principles, in harmony with EU principles, laws, democratic regulations, and human rights conventions, as well as UN resolutions.

The inhabitants of Pyroi stressed that the resolution must reinstate the sovereignty, independence, territorial integrity, and unity of the Republic of Cyprus. They opposed any foreign military intervention in Cyprus' domestic matters.

President of "The Pyroi" Refugees Association, Panayiotis Savvides, recounted that despite a truce, the village was occupied on August 17, 1974. He expressed the long-standing call for the new crossing point, highlighting its importance in facilitating numerous individuals.

Cyprus has remained divided since Turkey's 1974 invasion and occupation of its northern third. Despite repeated rounds of UN-led peace talks, conclusive results have yet to be achieved. The last round of negotiations in July 2017, held in Crans-Montana, Switzerland, concluded without a resolution.


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