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Dali residents protest as asphalt plants still not relocated 13 months after pledge to do so

demonstrating against the asphalt plants in dali
File photo: Residents demonstrating against the asphalt plants in Dali

Dali residents joined by MPs of various parties protested against the operation of two asphalt plans, requesting the intervention of the president for the factories’ relocation.

The demonstrators gathered at the roundabout near the exit of Nicosia to Limassol motorway at 10am holding banners and yelling slogans against the asphalt plants which cause air and noise pollution in the area.

“No to the harmful substances in our air,” chanted the participants, who included children but also parents from the primary and nursing school of Dali.

The new protest came as the asphalt plants still operate in the area, despite cabinet’s decision to relocate the plants by the end of last March, and a personal assurance by the president Nicos Anastasiades, multiple letters to state officials and numerous protests throughout the years.

The leader of the green party Charalmbos Theopemptou and MPs from other parties including Akel’s Christos Christofides, Disy’s Rita Superman and Dipa’s Alekos Trifonides, as well as a mother’s initiative group and another group focusing on improving the quality of life.

Participants also observed one-minute silence in memory of the three mothers who died of cancer in the area last year.

Earlier this week, a smallest protest against the asphalt factories took place outside Dali’s primary school with students refusing to attend classes during the first day of the reopening of schools on Monday.

In a statement after the protest, Christofides said: “Thirteen months ago, the president gave a clear assurance to the residents that in six to eight months the asphalt plants would definitely be moved. In addition to the environmental impact they cause, they have a serious impact on the health of residents”

“Unfortunately”, he added, the government’s promises went unanswered and residents of the wider area continue to breathe air that is harmful to their health.

He called again on the government to abide by its commitments and decisions and to move the asphalt plants from the area as soon as possible and to transfer them to an area that will not endanger the health of the public.

“It is finally time for the government’s commitments to be implemented because no one has the right to play with the health of children, with the health of our fellow human beings, with the health of thousands of our fellow citizens,” he concluded.

 

 

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