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Cyprus

‘Her dreams are gone’

The mothers of the two teenage victims of the bus crash in the occupied areas last week told Yeni Duzen newspaper on Tuesday that Sude Demirkiran, 12, wanted to be a psychologist, and Ilayda Ozturk, 17, a doctor.

Their death was largely attributed to the decision not to switch back from summer time in October, meaning students had to go to school in the dark, and the poor condition of the road network, sparking a series of sizeable protests against the so-called government which turned increasingly violent.

The two girls were riding in a small school bus which crashed into a lorry last Tuesday morning.

The Turkish Cypriot newspaper carried the interviews with the mother’s on its front page.

Sude’s mother, Yeliz Manici, said her daughter had not been eating properly in her last few days because she had exams. “She had a lot of dreams, she wanted to be a psychologist,” Manici said. “But her dreams are gone.”

Manici is divorced and the girl stayed with her father for the previous days in order to avoid the mountainous ride to school, but returned to her mother’s on Sunday, after her exams were over.

On Tuesday she woke up at 5:30am to take the 6:30am bus to school.

At around 8, Manici recalled, a friend of her daughter’s called to say they had been in an accident, and the girl had been taken to the hospital for an operation.

But on her way to the hospital, Manici passed by the scene of the accident and was told her daughter hadn’t made it. “I am a living dead now,” she said. “She was my only child.”

Manici asked to be buried next to her daughter when she dies but was told this would cost her the equivalent of €900.

“My daughter is in there, in the mud, and they are asking me for money,” she said.

The cemetery in occupied Nicosia was flooded during last week’s rains.

Ilayda’s mother said she was also asked for money when she asked to be buried next to her daughter when she dies.

“They said they would pay for the funeral,” she said of so-called government officials.

“I paid for it. No one called me.”

She said her daughter wanted to become a doctor and now she has “turned to dust”.

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