President Anastasiades praises work of CAARI as the Institute celebrates 40 years with a gala dinner

One after another the seven speakers at a gala dinner to mark 40 years since the establishment of the Cyprus American Archaeological Research Institute (CAARI) praised its work, the facilities it provides to scholars, its contribution to the island cultural heritage and the close cooperation it maintains with the government of Cyprus and related foundations.

In his address at the 40th anniversary gala of the Cyprus American Archaeological Research Institute, on Thursday evening, at the presidential palace, the President of the Republic Nicos Anastasiades expressed his appreciation of studies by CAARI of Cypriot and Eastern Mediterranean archaeology, history and culture and related disciplines in humanities and sciences, in line with the historic role of Cyprus as a meeting place and crossroads of civilisations.

The President, whose address was read by the Minister of Transport, Communications and Works Vasiliki Anastasiadou, congratulated the Institute on its work over the years, noting that it facilitates research by foreign archaeologists, scholars of Cyprus’ culture and history, in collaboration with the Department of Antiquities.

US Ambassador, Kathleen Doherty, said that the timeline of the history of Cyprus is nearly inexhaustible and expressed pride in the significant role the American government, scholars and institutions have played in discovering and preserving the island’s unparallel density of historical riches.

She also referred to the MoU Nicosia and Washington have signed to combat illegal removal and pillage of Cyprus’ cultural heritage, an agreement which has served as a model for many subsequent agreements the US has signed with other countries.

The Director of the Department of Antiquities Marina Solomidou-Ieronymidou outlined the work of her Department, saying that it has been making huge efforts in recent years to raise awareness of issues linked to the protection and preservation of the island’s cultural heritage.

Much of Cyprus’ cultural heritage in the island’s northern Turkish occupied areas has been destroyed, pillaged or abandoned to the elements.

About 30 foreign archaeological missions have been given excavation permits and licence to conduct surveys in recent years, she said, noting the close cooperation between her Department and CAARI, through workshops, lectures, seminars and other activities.

The work CAARI is doing was the focus of the speech by its current Director Lindy Crewe who said the Institute enters its fifth decade with optimism thanks to the efforts of many people and particularly CAARI trustee Chris Christodoulou.

She referred to the facilities the Institute provides to researchers and scholars, such as the hostel, the library, the lab space, saying that since it was founded in 1978 CAARI cooperates closely with the Department of Antiquities and other establishments on the island.

Cyprus, she said, constitutes a rich environment for cultural and heritage studies,, adding that there are still so many unanswered questions on the past of Cyprus and there is much work left to do in this respect.

Chris Christodoulou, the honored member of the Board of Trustees, expressed pride in being associated with CAARI in that it contributes to the excavations and bringing up to the surface hundreds of years of the island’s ancient history.

He appealed to all those present to spread the word about what CAARI is doing and support the Institute. He thanked everybody and named many people who have been instrumental in efforts to support CAARI.

Participants to the gala dinner were welcomed by Achilleas Demetriades, member of the CAARI Board of Trustees. The gala was also addressed by the Vice President of CAARI Annemarie Weyl Carr who referred to the significant work the Institute carries out and the importance of this work for Cyprus.

Source: Cyprus News Agency