Turkish soldiers in civilian clothes on Thursday attempted to block the Nicosia Municipality crew working on historic Spitfire coffeeshop in Nicosia, the Municipality reported.
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According to the announcement, as cleaning and structural support work being carried out by the Nicosia Municipality pressed on at the dilapidated Spitfire coffeeshop, located in the Green Line at the Paphos Gate area, “Turkish soldiers in civilian clothing attempted to interfere with the work of the Nicosia Municipality’s contractor, and then left.”
UNFICYP officials remained at the spot to carry out consultations in order to allow the crew to continue working smoothly, the Municipality said, adding that it expects the UN to ensure that the work seeking to make the building safe for pedestrians and passers-by can be completed.
News emerged on Wednesday that the Municipality had begun cleaning and structural support work on the iconic coffeeshop which was forced to shut down in 1974 after it found itself within the UN-controlled Buffer Zone,
The abandoned building’s condition had been deemed quite dangerous for passing pedestrians and vehicles, the municipality said, leaving it no other choice but to step in.
“The division and occupation of a portion of within-the-walls Nicosia, as well as the ravages of time, due to the difficulty of maintaining and renovating certain buildings on the Green Line, causes a day-by-day deterioration of the condition of buildings, including the ‘Spitfire’ building,” the municipality stressed.