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Cypriot President bestows state medal on Swedish Archaeologist
2005-07-01 12:18:37

Nicosia, Jul 1 (CNA) -- Swedish Archaeologist Paul Astrom was awarded the Grand Commander of the Order of the Merit of the Republic of Cyprus for his contribution in the island's history and archaeology.

The medal was awarded Thursday by Cyprus President Tassos Papadopoulos at a special ceremony at the Presidential Palace.

In his speech Papadopoulos stressed that the Swedish Archaelogical Mission in Cyprus has set the foundation stone for Cyprus archaeology as a contemporary scientific field with several publications.

''The archaeological findings give important information for the historical identity of our island. Invaders and conquerors cannot forge this historical and cultural identity of Cyprus. History and the Civilization cannot be forged and with these two weapons of peace, we fight for the reunification of our homeland and justice'', the President stressed.

Accepting the medal, the Swedish professor said he felt privileged to perform excavations on the island.

He also expressed the hope that a position for a professor specialised on Cypriot Antiquities will be offered in one of Sweden's Universities so as this tradition will be kept.

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