It is a national duty for all to work together for a Cyprus settlement, Defence Minister Charalambos Petrides told new conscripts during their swearing in ceremony at Larnaca training camp on Friday morning.
“Turkey with its revisionist outlook and provocative bilateral actions in the fenced off area of Famagusta, the consistent violation of Cyprus’ EEZ and the exploitation of human agony by way of pushing significant numbers of irregular migrants demonstrates a rigid position as to its ultimate goal, the division of our island. It is a national duty to struggle in solidarity for a solution to the Cyprus problem in line with UN’s Security Council’s resolutions and principles and values of the EU,” Petrides said.
“Our belief for justice must be framed by realism and we must always be fully aware of the risks posed. The fact that our defence spending is at the highest level in the last 20 years clearly demonstrates the will to modernise National Guard in order to increase its operational and strengthen deterrence capabilities,” he added.
The minister further called on the new conscripts to approach their service in a positive spirit, to use their time constructively and acquire knowledge and experiences for their life as citizens.
Addressing the parents attending the ceremony for the first time in two years, the minister told them to be proud of their children “for giving the sacred promise to defend Cyprus’ freedom,” as they deserve it for having come this far with their efforts and sacrifices.
Attending the ceremony were House President Anita Demetriou, National Guard chief Demokritos Zervakis, MPs and Larnaca’s police chief.
The ceremony concluded with the national anthem.