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First Epiphany ceremony in Famagusta for 42 years to take place on Wednesday

For the first time in 42 years, Epiphany will be celebrated in the occupied city of Famagusta on Wednesday with up to 1,000 people expected to attend.

Head of the ‘Famagusta, our city’ initiative Pavlos Iacovou, expressed his wish that 2016 would finally be the year where the island could be reunited.

“After 42 years, the Epiphany celebrations will be held in our city again,” he told the Cyprus News Agency.

Between 800 to 1000 people are expected to attend the ceremony at Ayios Georgios church in Famagusta from 7.30am to 10.30am.

Pilgrims will then proceed to the `Glossa` beach where the blessing of the waters will take place, a ceremony that includes diving to retrieve the Holy Cross which the priest throws in the water, according to the Greek Orthodox tradition.

At 11.30am “in our sea, our language, the diving ceremony of the holy cross and the blessing of the waters will take place,” said Iacovou. “The moments we have so dearly missed will come alive again,” an announcement said.

Bus transport for about 500 people will be provided for free as follows:

Famagusta: from the Ayios Georgios Square at 7am. Contact Maria Demetriou at 99 637 220 and Toulla Iacovou 99 595 699

Larnaca: Fire station at 7.15am, contact Chryso Hatjidemetriou 99 587 110

Limassol and Paphos: Ayios Georgios Havouzas, 6.30am. Contact Andria Gavriil Pompa 99 515 230

Nicosia: Handicraft Centre, 7am. Contact Giorgos Ierodiakonou 99656438

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