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Cyprus

President, Archbishop call for peace at Epiphany celebrations (updated)

No solution is acceptable that “provides guarantees, has the presence of troops and rights that violate any democratic principle,” President Nicos Anastasiades said on Sunday.

Speaking in Paphos during Epiphany celebrations after swimmers dived into the sea to get the cross from the water, he said efforts to find a solution will continue through peaceful means to find a solution to bring peace to the island.

A solution, he said, which would bring “stability and basic European rights”.

But, he added, “for a new state of things to emerge, I hope for appropriate Turkish behaviour”.

A state “which belongs to its legal residents so we can create a truly auspicious future”, stressing that this is “our main effort”.

Speaking at the same ceremony Archbishop Chrysostomos said Cyprus had got stronger with the trilateral relationships it had formed with countries in the region.

“Through these co-operations we become stronger and the internationalisation of our problem means it is taken more seriously,” he said.

Difficulties, he said, should not put us off facing our problems.

He said the whole population will fight until the day from Paphos to Apostolos Andreas Greek and Turkish Cypriot will enjoy real freedom.

Hundreds of Greek Cypriots took part in Epiphany celebrations in Famagusta.

Against the backdrop of crumbling hotels and homes ringed with barbed wire, a Greek Orthodox priest cast a cross into the sea, symbolising a blessing of the waters, and the manifestation of Jesus as the son of God.

Earlier, a liturgy was held within the walled medieval city of Famagusta.

“This is part of our being and we want to reunify the island,” said Anna Marangou, who is from Varosha, a suburb of Famagusta fenced off since 1974.

“We want peace, we want to bring up our kids and grandkids in ways where people are safe… It’s a wish for a new year, it’s a wish we get our act together to do it,” she said. [smart-photo]

A Greek Cypriot man holds the cross out of the water in FamagustaSwimmers in the water after the cross was claimedPresident Anastasiades and Archbishop Chrysostomos at Paphos seafrontSwimmers kiss the cross thrown into the sea in FamagustaCollecting the blessed water at an Epiphany service in LimassolThe church service in Paphos

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