Cyprus Mail

Akel marks anniversary of first communist party

AKEL diehards celebrate with banners of Che Guevara

Main opposition Akel on Thursday marked the 93rd anniversary since the establishment of the party’s precursor, the Cyprus Communist Party (KKK) and to mark its social struggles over the decades.

The KKK was established on August 15, 1926 in a small house in Limassol by around 20 progressive communists, the party said in an announcement.

“This event completed a long process of discussion and fermentation within the first communist cores, which appeared on our island under the direct influence of the ideas and visions of the October Revolution of 1917 in Russia,” it said.

It added that the first communists in Cyprus had faced many difficulties as they found themselves targeted by the colonial power, plutocrats, clerics, and “the ignorance of the popular masses.”

But despite adversities, convictions, unbearable fines, harassment and imprisonment, the KKK not only endured, but created conditions for the fight for the rights of workers, peasants, craftsmen, women and youth by pursuing social justice, labour rights and setting ambitious visions and long-term goals.

The communist party saw the exile of two of its leading figures after raising the issue of the full liberation of Cyprus from the colonial yoke, as well as the imprisonment of dozens of its members after the October 1931 anti-colonial revolt “while most of his political opponents cooperated and served the foreign power during the Palmerocracy”.

The period known as Palmerocracy took its name from British governor Richmond Palmer who introduced harsh measures after the revolt and which lasted until the beginning of World War II.

“The political structure of Akel, the entire popular movement of the Left, rests on those solid foundations laid by the pioneer communists with their struggles, action and self-sacrifice,” the party said.

Akel, that was established in 1941 after the KKK was declared as illegal, said that as its “worthy successor, it left its indelible mark on the political and social struggles, in which it continues to play a pioneering role up to the present day, to lift the Turkish occupation and reunify our country for the sake of our homeland.”

“Turning our memory back to 1926 and the course of the past nine decades, we pay tribute to the thousands who struggled and who, through sacrifices and struggles, created the best possible conditions for the common man and established Akel as a serious and massive political and social force, which is a guarantee for the justification of our people – Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots,” Akel said.

The party said that on the occasion of the 93rd anniversary of the founding of the KKK-Akel, “we renew our commitment to continue the struggle for the reunification of our country, for social justice, equality and prosperity.”

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