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Cetinkaya stadium to reopen next month

Εργασίες στο γήπεδο της Τσετίν Καγιά

The ‘Taksim’ stadium inside the Green Line in Nicosia and used by the Cetinkaya football team but under the control of the United Nations, will reopen next month, it was reported in the north on Thursday.

The United Nations last October accepted that the stadium be given back to Cetinkaya to use only for training and for preparation matches.  The stadium had been closed since 2014, when it was used for a special route of the Cyprus International Rally.

Back in October, Foreign Minister Ioannis Kasoulides had a “strong and stern” phone conversation with Unficyp head Colin Stewart over the works that were agreed with the north to be conducted on the stadium because permission had not been sought from the Republic of Cyprus.

The surprise works began after an agreement had been struck between Unficyp, the Turkish Cypriot side and Turkey.

Kasoulides at the time “expressed his intense uneasiness on our side for the way Mr Stewart and Unficyp handle their mandate in Cyprus, in a way that creates complications and problems mainly to the detriment of our side.”

He asked Stewart for the immediate suspension of the works so that there could be a consultation with the government and to explain the rationale that led Unficyp to granting a work permit without the consent of the Republic.

He also recommended the UN “avoid actions that could be exploited by the Turkish Cypriots to upgrade the breakaway regime”.

Unficyp spokesperson Aleem Siddique had said any suggestion that the status of the stadium had changed was wrong and misleading.

The site would be used for football practice only, as it has been used in the past, with strict regulations in place to manage its use and protect its status within the buffer zone.

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