Dozens of officials from Cyprus and abroad are expected to attend today’s Good Friday mass to be held at the Church of St George Exorinos in occupied Famagusta for the first time in 58 years.
According to an announcement released by Akel, mass will be held from 5pm to 7.30pm, officiated by Famagusta Bishop Vassilios.
Akel said that a delegation led by General Secretary Andros Kyprianou will attend the historic service and called on all Famagusta residents to participate.
“This way they will express their demand for the return of the city and affirm once more their will and faith in continuing the fight to reunite Cyprus and our people,” the announcement said.
Famagusta Mayor-in-exile Alexis Galanos said that the number of worshippers is expected to exceed 4,000.
Galanos also said that the duration of the Epitaphios Good Friday procession has been reduced to 25 minutes down from 45 and that it will take place around the church and not in the streets in order to avoid creating unnecessary tension.
Galanos said earlier this week that the event will give a message of reconciliation between Turkish Cypriots and Greek Cypriots and for the reunification of Famagusta.
Meanwhile, it has been announced that works to maintain and restore the Othello tower in the occupied city of Famagusta will get underway in the next few days, using savings from previous funding granted by the European Commission.
According to the Greek Cypriot chairman of the Joint Technical Committee on Cultural Heritage Takis Hadjidemetriou, the company TESLA has ratified the tenders.
This is considered one of the biggest projects undertaken by the committee and both Turkish Cypriot and Greek Cypriot members of the committee are expected to be on site to observe the launch of the project.
At the same time, Hadjidemetriou said that the committee is also waiting for the approval of the successful bidder by the United Nations Development Programme - Partnership for the Future of Cyprus (UNDP-PFF) in order to start restoration works on the monastery of Apostle Andreas.
The Joint Technical Committee on Cultural Heritage will manage the funds for the project which are expected to come to €5 million.