Varosha Blog from Rhinocarhire.com
 
Varosha Blog
In 1950, a referendum was held amongst Greek Cypriots over enosis and the result was overwhelmingly in favour of union (98%). Reports now indicate that pressure was put on the people to vote in favour by the church, yet many saw this as a green light for a stronger campaign.

Throughout the 1950’s calls for enosis, which had been in evidence in milder forms since the thirties, strengthened, supported by favourable noises from Greece. Some say that enosis was actually inflamed by Greece as a way of increasing its influence in the eastern Mediterranean whilst needling Turkey. Whatever the reasoning behind it, the Turkish Cypriot contingent of the population became increasingly worried.
Posted: August 25, 2010 by Global Administrator | with 0 comments

The 20th July 1974 is a date which haunts the memories of Cypriots the world over. Their beautiful island, so full of hope for the future after independence, was torn apart on that fateful day. Should they have been expecting it and were the events of that day inevitable?

A domino effect was certainly in place with the first domino pushed over long before the fateful day.
Posted: August 25, 2010 by Global Administrator | with 2 comments

We lived outside of Famagusta on the road down to Varosha, it wasn’t a big house, but it was home. Our whole family shared the house, our parents, my grandfather, my great aunt and my brother and I.

My father and mother ran a little general store in the early days of their marriage and they made a good living from it. They saved the profits from it and from the sale of the land my grandparents owned and used it to buy a small hotel just back from the beach at Varosha. With the growth in tourism from northern Europe and the UK, we were very busy and eventually my grandfather took over running the store whilst my father and mother and two cousins ran the hotel with the help of some Turkish Cypriot friends from the town
Posted: August 25, 2010 by Global Administrator | with 3 comments

The initial invasion began on Saturday 20th July 1974 when a bridgehead was established at Kyrenia.

Three days later the Greek junta that had ordered the coup in Cyprus collapsed and, in turn, so did the coup.
Posted: August 25, 2010 by Global Administrator | with 3 comments

The city of Famagusta, known as Magosa to the Turkish, Gazima─čusa to Turkish Cypriots was, and is, one of the finest cities of the eastern Mediterranean and with its wealth of medieval architectural features has been compared favourably to the cities of Carcasonne and Dubrovnik.

During Venetian rule Famagusta became the capital of Cyprus and benefited from investment in the defences of the city. Much of those fortifications still stand magnificently guarding the old city today.
Posted: August 25, 2010 by Global Administrator | with 0 comments

The future of Varosha is inextricably linked to that of Cyprus as a whole. Varosha is a strategic piece in the jigsaw that will need to be completed before the island is at peace once more.

It is likely that Varosha will be ceded to the south before the final resolution of the problem and probably in exchange for partial unblocking of Turkey’s plans for accession to the EU. What happens to Varosha in the meantime is more or less guaranteed. Access will be still be denied to all but the UN and the Turkish army, although in the lead up to serious negotiations it is likely that delegations from the Republic will be allowed to visit the fenced off area.
Posted: August 25, 2010 by Global Administrator | with 1 comments

Famagusta being the capital of Cyprus was laid siege to by the Ottoman forces. After a protracted siege the Venetian commander, General Bragadino, realised that defence was now futile and arranged the terms of surrender. Subsequently there occurred one of the worst examples of treachery in history when Bragadino and his officers were seized by the Pasha, tortured and executed. Thus Cyprus moved from being a Venetian, catholic dominion to an Ottoman Turkish Islamic one.
Posted: August 25, 2010 by Global Administrator | with 2 comments

Varosha prior to 1974 was the jewel in the crown of Cyprus. It was a world class tourist destination with fine beaches, five star resort hotels and the beauty of the island behind it enabling it to offer more than just a beach holiday destination. It was a huge money spinner with the potential to become even more of one in the future and for this reason it was treated differently by the invading Turkish forces.
Posted: August 25, 2010 by Global Administrator | with 2 comments

Varosha can truly be called a Ghost Town. Nobody lives there. Few, if any visit it and if you could, then its ghosts would be ever apparent in the silence, the stillness and the ‘frozen in time’ sights before you.

On the 15th August 1974, all of the residents of Varosha left, fearing death or worse at the hands of the Turkish invaders who were, at that very moment, fighting the Greek Cypriot army on the streets of Famagusta, a mile or so further north. They left at a moment’s notice. No time to collect treasured possessions or to clear tables or to lock up houses. They hoped they would be able to return within days or weeks but deep down they feared it would be the last they would see of their homes and businesses.
Posted: August 25, 2010 by Global Administrator | with 6 comments

Cyprus  could have been the perfect role model for Muslims and Christians living in harmony together but events beyond the control of simple villagers and farmers conspired together to bring about an enmity which lasts until today.

Cyprus of old was a sleepy place where people went about their business in a quiet way, content to live as the land allowed them.  Prior to 1878 the island was part of the Ottoman Empire and the administration was biased towards the Turkish Cypriot population which had been swollen by migration through the empire.
Posted: August 25, 2010 by Global Administrator | with 0 comments