Mr. Burrowes should also inspect the Mosques

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Last November, the British Conservative MP and the leader of the Cyprus Group in parliament (APPG), Mr. David Burrowes stated that he was appalled by the disrespect shown towards the sacred places like Churches and graveyards during his visit to the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC).

I would like to ask him, whether he actually visited the Turkish Cypriot cemeteries, mosques, villages and enclaves in the south of Cyprus?

I am not sure if he really visited these places.

I have a strong feeling that he did not, because if he really did, then surely it would have turned his stomach to see the condition of our sacred places.

 From time to time I ask myself whether we are experiencing a modern crusade in the 21. Century?

Mr. Burrowes  stated recently he would visit the following villages, Paşaköy (Asha), Gaziköy (Afanya), Gazimağusa (Famagusta), Nergisli (Yenagra) to clean the Greek Churches and cemeteries there.

Please also visit an area, where once a Turkish Cypriot village named Arpalık (Agios Sozomenos) stood, while you are journeying to Gaziköy (Afanya). It is on your way, it’s after you pass the village of Akıncılar (Lourigina), and it is just to the right. Once upon a time, or to be precise, exactly 48 years ago, there used to be a Turkish Cypriot village there. Now only the razed ruins and burned beams of a ghost village remain.

Please do ask the people accompanying you, especially your Greek Cypriot colleagues, what happened to this village? And where are the Turkish Cypriot residents of this once proud village?

If you really do have intentions of cleaning sacred sites, would it not be better if you start from here?

 If your flight is landing at Paphos airport, than I would strongly advise you to visit Yağmuralan (Vroisha) village, located close to the main highway near the airport, you would be fortunate to find a road to this village, where 48 years ago stood another proud village that was habited by mainly Turkish Cypriots.

If by blind chance you do find the route and reach the ruins of the village on foot, please do give me a call and I’ll give you the history of this village and what happened to its inhabitance.

Of course, now, there is no road leading to the village because there is no village, just a few rocks that were once people’s homes, people’s work places.

If you don’t succeed in finding this village, never mind, just ask your guides where the Camii Cedid is? This New Mosque in Paphos, and the adjacent Turkish bath, situated in the Turkish quarter, were knocked down and the area converted to an open air car park, all in a flash of a second, not so much of a single thought of how sacred these buildings were to Turkish Cypriots, hey, who cares, they only belonged to the ‘second class citizens’ of the then Republic of Cyprus.

Please do ask for the history of this car park, you wouldn’t lose anything, you might even learn something new, assuming your guides told you the truth of course.

Where were you Mr. Burrowes for the past 48 years? Why you don’t have any idea about these places or what happened to us, Turkish Cypriots, on the night of 21st December  1963 and the genocidal attacks on innocent Turkish Cypriots, men, women, children, either buried alive in mass graves or forced to flee into enclaves, it all started on this notorious night.

Why did you not visit Cyprus while the Greek Cypriots were ruthlessly killing us? burning down our homes and crops, destroying the fields and looting the animal stock.

You might say that you do not want to deal with the past, and then my advice would be for you to visit Limassol and the Köprülü Hacı İbrahim Ağa mosque, situated in Ankara street.

Only Last week this mosque was attacked and the wooden beams on the vaulted roof were completely burned down, as well as the windows and the doors.

This was not the first or the last assault on İslamic sacred places or cemeteries.

If by chance you are traveling to Nicosia, please stop by the village called Lakadamya (Lakatemia) and ask the Greek settlers now living in this once Turkish Cypriot village, where the Turkish Cypriot cemetery is, then get your brooms and weed trimmers ready to clean up this cemetery, that is if you can find it of course.

If you cannot find it, please ask the locals when was this area converted to a highway?, if no Greek Cypriot can answer you, then please allow me to inform you that it  was made into a highway in 2005.

This centuries old Turkish cemetery was demolished in 2005 when the Nicosia-Deftera road was renewed.

Where were you Mr. Burrowes and your colleagues from the year 2005 and onwards, whilst the Turkish sacred places were being ruthlessly destroyed and burnt down by the Greek Cypriots?

Please sweep and clean the Turkish mosques and cemeteries before you come to the TRNC to clean the Christian churches and cemeteries.

If not please do not come. We are not going to welcome you.


Prof. Dr. Ata ATUN


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