The newly-formed Society of Ukrainian-Cypriot friendship will host its first event on Thursday with a focus on Ukrainian national embroidery (vyshyvanka) marking its official registration under the auspices of the Ukrainian embassy.
“Our goal is to promote Ukrainian culture in Cyprus,” president of the association Lora Kalinichenko said on Tuesday. “We aim to show that we want to live in peace and cooperation together with the Cypriots.”
The society and the embassy are planning to have events providing information about the country and its people every month.
They rely on volunteers to become ambassadors for their country.
Official figures indicate that currently 3,500 Ukrainians live in Cyprus, but this count doesn’t include those who have Cypriot citizenship or a passport from other countries.
Kalinichenko believes that the actual figure is between 5,000 and 6,000 residents, most of whom live in Limassol and Nicosia.
Some are married to Cypriots, mainly women, others work in the country and a few have their own businesses, while there are also those who live here as they like the place but who work for international companies abroad from their homes, she said.
This is helped by the fact that there are now two to three direct flights from Ukraine’s main cities every day, something which in 2016 brought 65,000 visitors to Cyprus.
Ukrainian ambassador to Cyprus Borys Humeniuk said earlier this year there is growing cultural and humanitarian cooperation between the Ukrainians and Cypriots. “Existing agreements and programmes of cooperation in this sphere allow mutual exchange of visits between artists. Performances of dance and singing groups of Cyprus in Ukraine and those of
Ukraine in Cyprus, as well as their participation in international festivals in both countries are well-established,” he said, adding that a wide network in university partnerships also exists.
Those interested in the association can call 97 711 679 or email: [email protected]