FAMAGUSTA, Cyprus (Reuters) – The 14th-century Cypriot tower that is the fictional setting of Shakespeare’s play “Othello” reopens next month after undergoing renovation following decades of decay on the internationally isolated Turkish side of the ethnically divided island.
The “Othello Tower” was long a tourist magnet. But after Cyprus was partitioned by a 1974 Turkish invasion triggered by a brief Greek-inspired coup, hundreds of the island’s heritage sites fell foul of what became a frozen conflict.
LARNACA, Cyprus (Reuters) – A Cypriot court extended the detention of a Lebanese-Canadian man on Friday over the discovery of five tonnes of chemical fertiliser in a case Israel says bears the hallmarks of the Hezbollah guerrilla group.
Authorities detained the 26-year-old man, holder of a Canadian passport, in late May after finding ammonium nitrate, a potential explosive, in the basement of a home in the coastal town of Larnaca where he had been staying.
NICOSIA, May 28 (Reuters) – Greek and Turkish Cypriot
leaders on Cyprus agreed on Thursday to open further crossing
points linking the two parts and to merge their electricity
networks, a UN envoy said.
It was seen as the most positive sign in more than a decade
that relations are thawing between the ethnically-divided sides.
NICOSIA (Reuters) – Leaders of rival communities in ethnically-split Cyprus shared coffee and cake on Saturday in a symbolic gesture underscoring a thaw in relations over a conflict spanning decades.
Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades, the Greek Cypriot leader, and Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci spent more than an hour strolling through medieval streets of Nicosia, a first in the history of the Cyprus dispute.
NICOSIA (Reuters) – UN-sponsored talks resumed on Friday after an eight-month stalemate with Greek and Turkish Cypriot leaders agreeing to adopt confidence-building measures, in a new drive to settle the island’s decades-old conflict.
Greek Cypriot leader Nicos Anastasiades and his newly-elected Turkish Cypriot counterpart Mustafa Akinci agreed to the measures in parallel to meeting at least twice a month, U.N. mediator Espen Barth Eide said.
NICOSIA (Reuters) – Leaders of ethnically split Cyprus agreed on Monday to restart peace talks on May 15, a U.N. envoy said on Monday, offering fresh hope of healing one of Europe’s most enduring frozen conflicts.
Espen Barth Eide was speaking to media after a meeting between Greek Cypriot leader Nicos Anastasiades and Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci. It was their first encounter since Akinci, a moderate leftist, swept to victory in a Turkish Cypriot leadership election on April 26.
ANOGYRA, Cyprus May 6 (Reuters) – Barn owls and black snakes
are being enlisted in Cyprus to protect carob trees, known on
the Mediterranean island since antiquity and once a flourishing
export but now threatened by urbanisation and rats.
Since April, conservationists at centuries-old groves near
the island’s southern coast have been laying barn-owl nests and
planning reptile nests, primarily for the non-poisonous black
snake. They want to swap poison for natural predators to keep
rat populations in check and prevent damage to the trees.
NICOSIA (Reuters) – Greek Cypriots unveiled measures on Tuesday to boost trust across the ethnically divided island, and announced that rival leaders would hold their first meeting in months on May 2.
Peace talks between Cyprus’s estranged Greek and Turkish communities stalled last October, and Saturday’s meeting will be the first since moderate Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci swept to power in elections on April 26.
FRANKFURT/NICOSIA, April 28 (Reuters) – Cyprus is ready to
react to any spillover from the crisis in Greece, the governor
of the island’s central bank said on Tuesday, adding the two
countries were decoupling in the eyes of international markets.
Chrystalla Georghadji’s written remarks, sent on Tuesday in
response to questions from Reuters, underline concerns among
Cypriot policymakers amid heightened uncertainty over Greece’s
future in the euro zone.
NICOSIA (Reuters) – Greek Cypriots welcomed the election of a moderate Turkish Cypriot leader in northern Cyprus on Monday, saying they anticipated a swift resumption of stalled peace talks.
Turkish Cypriot independent Mustafa Akinci swept to victory in presidential elections on Sunday, clinching 60.5 percent of the vote over incumbent conservative Dervis Eroglu. Akinci has pledged to push for a peace deal with Greek Cypriots.