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If we are united...

 

If we are united, persistent and consistent we will succeed in our demand to return to our homes and properties.  Please see the news release on the Press Complaints Commission website, link shown above.  Metro newspapers did not get away with it and,in the end,  neither will Turkey.  If we are united, vocal, clear, persistent and consistent we will succeed in our demand to return to our homes and properties - we know that we have the moral highground. (View the article)
Mary Karaolis
President of the Association of Rizokarpasso in Britain

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Metro newspaper...

 

Following a lengthy process of complaint by the Association of Rizokarpasso in Britain against the Metro newspaper regarding their article on March 5th the complaint has been resolved.  Metro published a letter from the Association, a summary of the complaint is to be placed on the Press Complaints Commission website and will appear in the PCC published report as indicated in the letter received by the Association from the PCC. See the Letter

 

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ASSOCIATION OF RIZOKARPASSO IN BRITAIN

BRIGHTON VISIT

Members of the Association of Rizokarpasso in Britain enjoyed a day trip to Brighton. (10/6/2007)  The group gathered and boarded their coach near the Cypriot Community Centre, Wood Green. The day was spent relaxing and enjoying the sea views, the gardens, visiting the Royal Pavilion, shopping and having the traditional seaside lunch of Fish and Chips.   The group also visited the Greek Orthodox Church of Ayia Triadas. The group was met by Church Committee members and Stephen Alambrides, Labour Councillor for Merton, who is short listed for the Brighton Kempton Parliamentary Constituency seat.  The coach journey was made more enjoyable eating the traditional Shinnopittes and Pittes Karpassitises   prepared by members for the outing which delighted the group. 





The outing was an opportunity to exchange family information and to remember the wonderful times spent in Rizokarpasso more than 33 years ago.   The Association has been very active, contacting the British Foreign Office and Members of Parliament following the recent outrageous policy of the occupying regime who have demolished Greek Cypriot houses in Rizokarpasso and increased the pace of building houses for Turkish settlers.  Everyo ne is determined to strive for the removal of the Turkish forces and settlers from Cyprus so that we might all return to our homes and properties in Rizokarpasso and enjoy our Rizokarpasso in the company of our family and friends thereby making the sacrifice of our remaining 264 compatriots in Rizokarpasso who have remained enclaved all these years meaningful.  

The Association's next opportunity for family and friends to meet will be at the Trafalgar Square Rally on Sunday 15 th July, the Annual General Meeting on Sunday 14th October at the Cypriot Community Centre, Wood Green, and the Association's Dinner and Dance on Saturday 24th November at the The Penridge Banqueting Suite, 470 Bowes Road, London N11 1NL.

18/6/2007

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Association of Rizokarpasso in Britain celebrates Ayios Synesios

Association of Rizokarpasso in Britain celebrates Ayios Synesios and protests against the further exploitation of their properties and attack on their basic human rights.

Rizokarpasides flocked to St Demetrios Church, Edmonton, London on Sunday 27th May 2007 to participate in the liturgy and celebration of the patron saint of Rizokarpasso, Ayios Synesios, the actual Saint's day is 26 th May. 

However, at the same time they were thinking of the latest outrage against their human rights since the occupying Turkish regime is busy demolishing their homes in Rizokarpasso and creating building plots to offer to more settlers from Turkey.   This is in addition to the occupation and building that has already taken place on Greek Cypriot property and the daily denial of basic human rights to their enclaved friends and relatives in Rizokarpasso.  The Association of Rizokarpasso in Britain has protested against these latest illegal acts and has written letters to:

The Honourable Ban Ki-moon (Secretary General of The United Nations)
Rt. Hon. Margaret Beckett MP  (Secretary of State for Foreign & Commonwealth Affairs) 
Rt. Hon. The Lord Goldsmith QC (Attorney General)
House of Commons Joint Committee on Human Rights
Bar Human Rights Committee and, as shown below, to the EU:

 

25th May 2007
His Excellency Jose Manuel Durao Barroso
The President of the European Commission
European Commission
1049 Brussels
Belgium

Dear President Barroso

We seek your support of our basic human rights including the right, as EU citizens, to own our property in Cyprus over the random seizure that occurred when Turkey invaded and occupied north Cyprus and then transported 120,000 illegal settlers from Turkey to take over Greek Cypriot properties.  

We have been informed that the occupying forces have recently demolished some 60 houses belonging to Greek Cypriots in Rizokarpasso, where there are still 264 enclaved Greek Cypriots, (who themselves are denied basic human rights), in order to create house building plots which young settlers from Turkey have one month to apply for. This is in addition to the occupation and building that has already taken place on Greek Cypriot owned property. Our properties in Rizokarpasso are being usurped by settlers from Turkey backed by a Turkish occupying army. 

We believe that the EU is in a very strong position to help us because of Turkey's application to begin the process for EU membership. Therefore we ask that the EU put pressure on Turkey to stop these illegal acts, which will aggravate an already difficult situation by seeking to settle even more Turkish migrants on Greek Cypriot property.   Turkey's latest act illustrates their intransigence and determination to avoid seeking a viable and lasting solution to the problem that they have created by invading and occupying northern Cyprus. 

We look forward to receiving your response to this very urgent problem.  

Yours sincerely
Mrs Mary Helen Karaolis  BEd(Hons)   MA  NPQH
President of the Association of Rizokarpasso in Britain
on behalf of the Executive Committee

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PRESS RELEASE

Association of Rizokarpasso in Britain Annual General Meeting

The 33rd Annual General Meeting (68th GM) of the Association of Rizokarpasso held in the hall of the Cypriot Community Centre, Wood Green, was well attended and gave the opportunity for the members present to discuss the many issues regarding Rizokarpasso, especially in relation to the plight of compatriots who have been enclaved for the last 32 years and denied basic human rights by the illegal occupying regime.  Once again, the members vehemently upheld that the return of the refugees to their homes and properties was a human right, morally correct and totally non-negotiable and signed a petition to be sent to the Prime Minister expressing their steadfastness.  2005-2007 Officers Maria Karaolis, President, presented a report of the Association's activities since the last meeting and Yiannis Chronias, Treasurer presented the financial accounts of the Association.  Honorary President, Panos Hadjipanayi chaired the remainder of the meeting and presided over the election of a new committee for 2007-2009.  At a subsequent Executive Committee meeting the 12 committee members unanimously elected the following officers who will serve for the next two years:

Maria Karaolis  President
Michael Lidas  Vice President
Konstantinos Spanovangelis
General Secretary
Yiannis Chronias
Treasurer
Mrs Yianoulla Antoniades Minutes Secretary
Vassos Plissi  Events/Social Secretary
Christiana Demetriou
 Assistant Events/Social Secretary
Takis  Chrysostomou
Member
Nikolas Kolatsis
 Member
John Manitara
 Member
Maria Panteli  Member
Yiannis Tsangaris
 Member

 
Honorary President, Panos Hadjipanayi chaired the remainder of the meeting

Petition to be sent to The Rt Hon Tony Blair PM

We petition the Prime Minister to act in accordance with Britain's treaty obligations with the Republic of Cyprus and to take decisive action to prevent direct trade and direct flights between Britain and occupied northern Cyprus and to prevent the illegal sale and advertising of Greek Cypriot property.  According to the Treaty of Guarantee, Britain, Greece and Turkey undertook "to prohibit, as far as lies within their power, all activity having the object of promoting directly or indirectly either the union of the Republic of Cyprus with any other State, or the partition of the Island."

In 1974 Turkey illegally invaded Cyprus and ethnically cleansed 200,000 Greek Cypriots, who made up 82% of the population, from 38% of Cyprus territory in the north, and still occupies their land and homes with 40,000 troops and 150,000 colonists. Only 264 enclaved Greek Cypriots remain in Rizokarpasso and they are denied basic human rights by the illegal administration.   UN Security Council resolutions 541(1983) and 550(1984) declare the self proclaimed "Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus," "legally invalid" and call upon all states not to assist this illegal secessionist entity in any way.  Supporting a direct link will lend credibility to the occupation and colonizing of northern Cyprus it will ignore the human rights abuses carried out since 1974.  The Turkish Cypriots are not isolated, they enjoy all the benefits of other legal citizens of the Republic of Cyprus and many of them enter daily and work in unoccupied Cyprus and receive health and social benefits from the Republic of Cyprus.  It is the illegal settlers and occupying army who are isolated in northern Cyprus and should remain isolated till they leave Cyprus.

Our Association believes that the interests of democracy and international law require the following:

a)       The removal of all Turkish troops from Cyprus.
b)       The repatriation to Turkey of the over 150,000 illegal settlers in Cyprus.
c)       The restoration of the human rights and fundamental freedoms of all Cypriots.
d)       The reunification of the island and people of Cyprus.
e)       The return of all the refugees to their homes and properties in safety.
f)         The return of all properties to their lawful owners.
g)       The end of the suffering of the enclaved.
h)       The full and effective investigation of the fate of all the missing persons.

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Protest for...

We have complained to "Metro" by email and letter regarding their inaccurate and misleading article on Cyprus and received no reply.  Therefore, we are making a formal complaint against Metro to the Press Complaints Commission.  Please see letters below:

 

Press Complaints Commission
Halton House
20/23 Holborn
London EC1N 2JD

4th April 2007

 

Dear Madam/Sir

Re "Metro" newspaper article 5th March 2007 page 53 "Make friends in the north"

We wish to make a formal complaint against "Metro" since, according to the Code of Practice, " All members of the press have a duty to maintain the highest professional standards. This Code sets the benchmark for those ethical standards, protecting both the rights of the individual and the public's right to know. It is the cornerstone of the system of self-regulation to which the industry has made a binding commitment."  

The article referred to above violates the Code since Metro has published inaccurate, misleading and distorted information.   We have raised this matter with Metro (emails of 5th and 25th March and letter of 12th March enclosed).  However, Metro has failed to respond to our communications, therefore we would be grateful if the Press Complaints Commission could follow up with Metro their publishing inaccurate information and making no attempt to respond to complaints.

We look forward to hearing from the Press Complaints Commission regarding our complaint against Metro.

Yours faithfully
Mrs Mary Helen Karaolis BEd (Hons)MA NPQH
President of the Association of Rizokarpasso in Britain on behalf of the Executive Committee & Members

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The Editor

12th March 2007

Kenny Campbell

Metro
Associated Newspapers Limited
Northcliffe House
2 Derry Street
London W8 5TT 

 

Dear Mr Campbell


The Executive Committee and members of our Association were appalled to read on Page 53 of Metro, distributed on 5 th March 2007, the article "Turkish Cyprus – leave the tourism excesses of the south and head to the other side of the island"  "Make friends in the north".

 

Our members were especially offended at your reference to Rizokarpasso as "Dipkarpaz".  The panhandle  known as the Karpas Peninsula, where Rizokarpasso proudly sits at the top, is indeed a splendid part of the island of Cyprus.   However, you have totally misrepresented the reality. Rizokarpasso was a totally Greek Cypriot village of over 3,000 people prior to the Turkish invasion in 1974;  through the policy of ethnic cleansing and denial of human rights the 3,000 have been reduced to 264 (the elderly mother of one of our members died over the Christmas period in Rizokarpasso) . Settlers from Anatolia in Turkey have been transported to Rizokarpasso to colonize the area and occupy the homes and exploit the properties of the Greek Cypriots who fled for their lives from the invading Turkish troops in 1974. The article in your newspaper is very offensive to our members and other British citizens of Greek Cypriot descent who have been denied access to their properties in occupied north Cyprus and whose friends and relatives were killed or are missing or have been enclaved for the last 32 years in Rizokarpasso and denied basic human rights.  I enclose a letter from Andrew Dismore, Member of Parliament, who visited Rizokarpasso in October 2006 which confirms the reality of the situation.   The mosque that you refer to in Rizokarpasso, together with the Turkish settlers, is a post invasion and occupation attempt to change the demography of the area and take by force the properties of the Cypriots.  Turkey, a country with a population of  over 75,000,000 and one of the biggest armies in the region is being supported in its expansionist policy directed at the small island of Cyprus, with a population of 750,000 by articles such as yours.  You should feel ashamed at misleading the British public by misrepresenting the reality of Rizokarpasso.

 

The only fair, just and long term solution is the withdrawal of the occupying Turkish troops and illegal settlers and the return of the legal owners to their homes and properties in north Cyprus.    The denial of support for the illegal regime and the reunification of the Republic of Cyprus is not only a morally correct stand to take; it is one that is in our long term interest in order to preserve our democratic way of life.


The members of our Association hope that in future Metro will exercise ethical journalism based on democratic principles and human rights and adhering to the
Code of Practice which was framed by the newspaper and periodical industry and was ratified by the PCC .  We expect Metro to rectify their inaccurate information in the article.

 

Yours sincerely

  Mrs Mary Helen Karaolis  BEd(Hons)   MA  NPQH

President of the Association of Rizokarpasso in Britain on behalf of the Executive Committee & Members
11/4/2007

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