Eptakomi Association UK & Lobby for Cyprus event, 18 July 2018
More than 44 years since they were forcibly uprooted from their homes and lands in Turkish-occupied Cyprus, members of the forcibly displaced community of Eptakomi (Eptakomides) share their harrowing experiences of shattered lives: as persons who were ‘enclaved’ citizens of the Republic of Cyprus after the second Turkish invasion of 1974; as the victims of discrimination, bullying, coercion, intimidation and other forms of persecution; as victims of inhumanity who were forced to flee from their own homes for their own safety; as forcibly displaced persons who were dispersed around the world from 1974 onwards; and as bystanders who have seen their community subjected to an arbitrary and illegal programme of de-Hellenisation and de-Christianisation.
This is a story that highlights the persecution of Greek and Christian citizens of the Republic of Cyprus in the months after the ‘cease fire’ proclaimed on 16 August 1974. This is a story that everybody who cares about humanity should know about.
• OPENING REMARKS – Theo Theodorou, Coordinator of Lobby for Cyprus
• INTRODUCTION TO EPTAKOMI – an outline of events during and after the two
Turkish invasions, followed by a showing of the short documentary film ‘The Village of Eptakomi’.
• IN THEIR OWN WORDS – the experiences of Eptakomides:
– The ‘enclaved’ citizens of the Republic of Cyprus who remained during the initial years of Turkish occupation;
– Life under Turkish occupation from 1974 to 1976 when all remaining members of the Eptakomides community were forced to flee;
– The fate of the Eptakomides community, how they settled in Ayios Thomas and Platanisia in the free areas of the Republic of Cyprus and throughout the world;
– The missing persons of Eptakomi – the effects on their families; how and where the remains of some of the missing have been found.
• THE ‘EPTAKOMI BIBLE’ – Eptakomides’ most famous possession is known as the manuscript of St Luke. The story of how the Turkish army searched for it and how the remaining Eptakomides hid it and managed to smuggle it out in 1976 when they all fled. It has now been fully restored and is on permanent display in the museum of the Kykkos Monastery.
• BRIEF INTRODUCTION TO THE FORTHCOMING BOOK ‘EPTAKOMI’ on the history of Eptakomi.
The story of the Eptakomides is an example of what happened throughout the entire occupied area of Cyprus, in towns and countless villages, when more than 170,000 people were forced out of their homes and lands – because they were Greek or Christian or both.
Nick Yiannoullou, Chairman of Eptakomi Association UK
Wednesday 18 July 2018 • 7.30pm
• Admission free
• Discussion and Q&A
• The event will be in English
The event is part of Cyprus Week at Theatro Technis, which will mark 44 years since the Turkish invasion and occupation of the northern area of the Republic of Cyprus.
Theatro Technis, 26 Crowndale Road, London NW1 1TT
Nearest tube Mornington Crescent
A society uprooted: Eptakomi village has been under occupation since the Turkish invasions of Cyprus in 1974. The last remaining members of the Greek community were forced to flee in 1976. (Click on photos to enlarge)
Eptakomi Association UK was founded to assist the displaced Eptakomides following the invasions and occupation of Eptakomi and to preserve the cultural identity of the Eptakomides
Lobby for Cyprus is a non-party-political human rights organisation campaigning for a unitary Cypriot state without segregation along ethnic and religious lines