Pilgrims to attend mass in Agios Georgios Exorinos for the first time after Deryneia crossing opened

The opening of more crossing points should lead to the reunification of our country Mayor of occupied Famagusta Alexis Galanos has said. He also called on pilgrims to attend the mass to take place next Sunday at the Church of Agios Georgios Exorinos in Famagusta, the first to take place following the opening of Deryneia crossing last month.

Speaking at a press conference on Thursday the Mayor said that the mass has a symbolic meaning and sends the message that the people of Famagusta want to return to their homes and want the Turkish troops to end the illegal occupation of our land.

He said that the local authorities and the people of Famagusta send the message once again that the town should be returned to its lawful residents and that UN experts should be allowed in the fenced off town of Varosha.

People who are interested to attend the mass could call at 99 587110 for further information as buses have been arranged to transfer them from all cities.

Derynia, in the east of Cyprus, is only two kilometres away from the Turkish occupied town of Famagusta. The crossing point, located at Famagusta Avenue, leads straight into Turkish occupied Famagusta town. However, residents of the Famagusta district in the government controlled areas had to travel through the Vrysoules checkpoint and go all the way round, making a 40 minute journey to enter the town.

Varosha, the fenced � off part of the once thriving holiday resort, on the eastern coast of Cyprus, has been sealed since the 1974 Turkish invasion and according to the UN the Turkish military is responsible for it. Repeated attempts to hand the area to UN administration and its Greek Cypriot lawful inhabitants have so far failed due to the stance of the Turkish army.

UNSC resolution 550 (1984) ‘considers attempts to settle any part of Varosha by people other than its inhabitants as inadmissible and calls for the transfer of this area to the administration of the United Nations’.

The Republic of Cyprus has been divided since 1974, when Turkish troops invaded and occupied 37% of its territory. The latest round of UN-backed talks with the aim to reunite the island under a federal roof, took place in the summer of 2017 at the Swiss resort of Crans Montana but failed to yield resutls.

Source: Cyprus News Agency