On Sunday, Cyprus began marking 45 years since the death of Archbishop Makarios who died on August 3, 1977 with a special church service to commemorate the anniversary ahead of further events on the day.
The service at the Kykko Monastery, was addressed by House President Annita Demetriou who described the first president of Cyprus as “an iconic figure”.
“Archbishop Makarios was undoubtedly an emblematic figure, a strong personality and no one can doubt that he marked, in a particularly turbulent period, the most decisive historical developments in Cyprus, leaving his indelible stamp on the short but varied biography of the Republic,” she said.
Demetriou said that as the first president of Cyprus, Makarios “found himself faced with relentless, thorny political dilemmas, in which he was called upon to make difficult and painful decisions.”
His choices determined and continue to largely shape the present and future of the national issue and by extension the Republic of Cyprus itself, she added.
“Forty-five years after his death, the struggle for justice continues daily amid the threatening and destabilising attitude of Turkey.”
“We do not come to terms with the occupation, we do not accept the continuation of the unacceptable current situation and we certainly cannot allow ourselves to remain inactive in the face of expansionist plans by Turkey and the idea of a two-state solution,” Demetriou said.
She called for national unity to face these new challenges.