President Nicos Anastasiades said on Friday he would personally intervene to try and help male students facing fee hikes at British universities after they finish their military service.
Specifically, the platform ‘Conscripted-Students 20-/21’ met with Anastasiades to discuss the issues they were facing with the fee hike and their perception of being abandoned by the government.
Two days ago, a joint statement from the foreign and education ministries said male students serving in the army this year, who will lose their home fee status at British universities because of a fee hike from 2021, should discuss enrolling under current terms with the universities of their choice.
At their meeting with the president, the platform said, they informed him about the actions they had taken to date on the issue.
They said the platform contacted universities in the UK directly, and one university, Hull, has already agreed to keep fees the same for them, when they enter next year.
Education Minister Prodromos Prodromou said maybe others would follow.
On Friday, the platform said they informed Anastasiades about contacts they had with the head of the National Federation of Cypriots in the UK, Christos Karaolis, who also told them he would approach universities personally.
The platform also said they spoke with some MPs in England to ask for help in strengthening their efforts.
On Thursday, the platform said the ministries of foreign affairs and education should not be able to shirk their responsibility for the problem of the increased fees at British universities.
“The government is essentially washing its hands of the affair and tells the conscripts to directly negotiate with universities, which is impossible and unacceptable.”
Parents also attacked the government on Thursday. They said in an announcement: “These boys studied hard and invested in their studies and our own government needs to appreciate that. How many universities has our government contacted?”