Cyprus Mail

Christodoulides: Cyprus’ identity and culture of utmost importance

byzantine, byzantinist society, fresco, painting

President Nikos Christodoulides on Friday called the promotion of Cyprus’ identity and culture “of paramount importance, especially considering the risks posed by the continued occupation of the island.”

Reading a letter on his behalf during an international conference organised by the Byzantine Society of Cyprus in Nicosia, Education Minister Athena Michaelidou said efforts must be aimed at preserving historical monuments on the island and, more in general, the country’s cultural heritage.

“Conferences such as this one make Cyprus and the wider Mediterranean region a centre of scientific interest and are a wonderful means of getting to know the historical course and the intellectual and cultural life of our country,” she said.

“At the same time, we need to make people aware of the problem we are facing due to the Turkish invasion and the ongoing occupation, which poses several threats on many fronts, especially as far as the preservation of our monuments and our cultural heritage are concerned,” she said.

Michaelidou added that Cyprus’ history throughout the centuries contributed to the creation of many culturally relevant wonders, such as churches, monasteries, as well as icons and mosaics.

The conference focused on several topics and subjects, ranging from history, archaeology, art, literature, philosophy and theology during the Byzantine, Medieval and Ottoman periods.

Experts and scientists from different countries, such as Greece, England, Israel, Turkey, Armenia, and Serbia, also took part in the event.

Michaelidou commended the Byzantine Society of Cyprus “for bringing together prominent and renowned scientists and researchers to the event.”

Furthermore, she congratulated the society’s head Nicolas Bakirtzis “for promoting the dissemination of Byzantine and Medieval studies in Cyprus and abroad.”

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