Famagustans launch signature campaign for return of refugees
Larnaca, Apr 14 – Under the slogan “Let’s give voice to our city”, the displaced Municipality of Famagusta has begun a campaign to collect signatures by Famagusta refugees demanding that they be allowed to return back to their occupied fenced-off town.
Mayor of Famagusta Alexis Galanos said that “we begin a campaign for the return of the town of Famagusta which is deserted and we refuse to become accustomed to this picture. We want Famagusta to reign once again”. Since Turkey invaded Cyprus in the summer of 1974, Famagusta, once a lively coastal resort, has been turned into a ‘ghost town’.
The Mayor added: “This great injustice violates UN resolutions, especially resolution 550, as well as high level agreements.”
He also called on all people of Famagusta to come forward and sign to give the town the power to promote the issue everywhere, especially in the European family where Cyprus is also a member.
Mr. Galanos added that before any more chapters in Turkey’s EU accession open, “the big chapter of the return to the city of Famagusta should open, as well as the right for our refugees to return to their homes”.
Signatures have been collected from 21 designated places across the island. Eligible to sign the Declaration are Famagusta citizens aged 12 and over. Refugees residing abroad are also able to download and print the signature form at http://www.ammochostos.org.cy/simera/signature-camp1.asp, or go to the chanceries of Cyprus embassies.
The Embassy of Cyprus in Washington, DC, is located at 2211 R Street NW and is open from 9am-5pm, Monday through Friday. May 10 is the last day that signatures can be collected.