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2002-03-12 19:16:55

Nicosia, Mar 12 (CNA) -- Spyros Kyprianou, former President of the Republic, died from cancer today at 17:32 hours, at the age of 69, it was announced today. The funeral will be held on Thursday, March 14, at 1.00 pm (11.00 GMT), at the Church of Panayia Evangelistria, in Nicosia, at the state's expense.Kyprianou will be buried in Limassol, at a private ceremony, at the request of his family.|

Spyros Kyprianou - Biographical notes

Spyros Kyprianou, President of Cyprus for 11 years from 1977- 1988 and one of the fore-most politicians of the island died of cancer here today, at the age of 69.

Kyprianou was the first Foreign Minister of the Cyprus Republic and served in that capacity for twelve years, under the presidency of Archbishop Makarios, the first President of Cyprus, which gained independence from the British colonial rule in 1960.

Spyros Kyprianou was born in Limassol in 1932. After attending the Greek Gymnasium in his home ? town, he went to London where he studied Economics and Commerce at the City of London College and Law at Gray's Inn. He was called to the bar in 1954. He also obtained a diploma in comparative law. He founded the Cypriot Students' Union in England (EFEKA).

In 1952 he was appointed Secretary in London of Archbishop Makarios, Ethnarch of Cyprus, and in 1954 he assumed the office of the Secretary of the Cyprus Ethnarchy and projected the Cyprus case for self-determination. He returned to Cyprus in 1959, after the signing of the Zurich and London Agreements granting the island independence from Britain.

On the declaration of independence, on August 16, 1960, President Makarios appointed him Minister of Justice and a few days later, Minister of Foreign Affairs.

In this capacity he represented Cyprus in various conferences, negotiations, meetings and talks. He also accompanied President Makarios in his state visits to several countries including Turkey, West Germany, Japan and the Soviet Union.

He resigned from his post in May 1972 after a serious dispute with the military regime in Athens and withdrew from politics until the coup d'edat against Makarios and the Turkish invasion of Cyprus in July 1974.

In the same year he led the Cyprus delegation at the UN General Assembly that discussed the Cyprus problem.

Two years later, he founded the centre-right Democratic Party in Cyprus. In the September 5, 1976 Parliamentary elections his party won 21 out of 35 seats in the House of Representatives. Kyprianou was elected President of the House.

After the death of President Makarios on August 3, 1977, Kyprianou became, under the constitution, Acting President of the Republic and one month later, was unanimously elected President for the remainder of the term of Archbishop Makarios. On February 28, 1978 he was elected, again unopposed, President of the Republic for a full five-year term.

He was re-elected President on February 13, 1983 with the support of his own party and the Leftwing AKEL party, which formed the democratic cooperation front, receiving 56.54 % of the votes.

During his presidency he visited many countries and attended conferences and summits of the United Nations, the Non-Aligned countries and the Commonwealth.

As President, Kyprianou is credited with the economic miracle in Cyprus, after the Turkish invasion and occupation of 37% of its territory.

He participated in Parliamentary elections for the last time in 1996 and was afterwards elected President of the House of Representatives. He served until the end of his term in May 2001, when he withrew from active politics and handed over the Democratic Party's presidency.

Kyprianou was married and had two sons. |

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