By Anne Canalp
Turkish Cypriot co-chair of the Bicommunal Technical Committee on Cultural Heritage, Ali Tuncay said: “It was a beautiful day in Karpaz, when we celebrated this example of partnership between communities, which has seen the conservation of the ancient mosaics and historic basilicas. Our thanks to all who attended, especially the Greek and Turkish Cypriots."
Mr Tuncay said that, despite differences in name, gender, language and belief, the International Day of Peace should be when human beings should share common ground in an era of globalisation. It was impossible to speak of an ‘independent and isolated’ cultural heritage.
He added that, in the past, work on the island’s cultural heritage had become points of conflict and consequently victims of division, but now should be a period of peace and reconciliation. However, he later warned on social media that: “we do not have the institutional structure to provide for the sustainable care and maintenance of the sites that have already been completed with such significant effort and funding. Will they be neglected and in need of repair in three to five years time?"
At the ceremony Kjartan Björnsson, EU’s head of the Cyprus Settlement Support Unit, said that the recently recruited Greek and Turkish Cypriot Youth Heritage Ambassadors needed to work together to help preserve our cultural heritage and achive the goal of peace and reconciliation.
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