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Destruction of our Cultural Heritage

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Destruction of our Cultural Heritage

Turkish occupation has left its fingerprints on our cultural heritage. The conquerors, as much as they can, were and continue to be careful, endeavouring to expose themselves as little as possible, to exterminate the purely Greek civilization and to give our village a Turkish character. This is the strategy they have used and continue to apply to all Greek areas in Cyprus and Asia Minor.

Thus, their first move was to remove the sculptured busts in honour of our Heroes in Rizokarpaso, namely those devoted to Panayiotis Kaspis and Petrakis Yiallouros. The sculptures adorned the Heroes’ monument in the village plaza, exactly opposite the St. Synesios church. Precisely behind the two sculptures, there was a tall marble plaque, 2 meters by one, where the famous Greek saying was engraved: “One is the best omen, to defend one’s fatherland”. They have erased these words and in their place they have engraved the words of Attatourk. And where on the two posts we used to sea the Greed and the Cypriot flags waving in the air, we now see the Turkish and the Turkish Cypriot pseudostate flags.

But the moist characteristic fingertips of their barbarism were left on our village cemetery. On the spot where our predecessors are buried and where many more expressed to wish to be buried when they were dead (the Turks have not granted this), more than 90% of the graves have been plundered and nearly all the crosses have been destroyed. The barbarians have not respected even the dead.

On the spot where the St. Synesios church stood proudly attracting the admiration of both locals and visitors – a church one could see from whatever point in the Anavryse and Lekou area – they have erected exactly behind it on the right hand side (where the olive mill was), a monstrosity, a ungraceful tower of a minaret, hiding our famous church. But they have not hidden it from our hearts, and they never will.






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Contact us: rizo@rizokarpason.com
Visit from: 11/10/1999