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Bicommunal effort continues to restore churches and mosques

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A number of churches and mosques of cultural value are being restored after decades of neglect, as a result of Greek and Turkish Cypriot cooperation, said the bicommunal Technical Committee on Cultural Heritage (TCCH).

In a press release, the TCCH said a number of conservation works at several sites within the framework of the “Support to cultural heritage monuments of great importance for Cyprus” project funded by the European Union and implemented by the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) have been completed.

These include the Afendrika archaeological site, situated in the ancient settlement known as Urania, Panagia church, Asomatos church and Agios Georgios church.

The site is situated in Karpasia, in the Turkish occupied north of the island.

“The churches benefited from intensive cleaning and structural consolidation works. The flooring of the churches were reset and gates were installed. Better rainwater management systems were put in place and all openings were covered. The budget for the conservation project, which began in October 2020 and ended in December 2020, was €215,595,” the announcement said.

In the Panagia Evangelistria church, also in Karpasia, cracks and dislocated stones were repaired, and iron elements were treated in the bell tower. Missing stones that could pose structural risks were replaced, and the surfaces were waterproofed.

“The emergency interventions carried out were for the purpose of safeguarding the church. The budget for the conservation project, which began in October 2020 and ended in December 2020, was €32,583”.

At Agios Evlalios, in the Kyrenia area, the mosaic floors on the north side and interior were uncovered, consolidated and protected. Vegetation was removed and deteriorated stones were replaced.

The emergency interventions carried out at this site were for the purpose of safeguarding the church from further decay. The budget for the conservation project, which began in October 2020 and ended in December, was €51,807.

Mosques up for repair

Furthermore, the TCCH said it is carrying out the tendering processes for several mosques across the island.

In particular, at the Orounda mosque, works are currently being tendered and conservation is expected to start in May. The complex consists of three buildings: the mosque, made of rubble stone masonry, a secondary building made of adobe masonry and the school building. All three structures will benefit from safeguarding from further decay and the provision of structural support.

For the mosque in the Maroni the tender process for the planning is currently ongoing, whilst conservation is expected to start in the fourth quarter of 2021. The mosque will benefit from safeguarding from further decay.

Thirdly, at the mosque in the village of Kalo Chorio/Vuda, the planning process is ongoing and is expected to be completed in August, whilst conservation is expected to start in the fourth quarter of 2021. The mosque will benefit from safeguarding from further decay and the provision of structural support.

Also, at the mosque in Lefkara, the process is ongoing and is expected to be completed in August, whilst conservation is expected to start in the fourth quarter of 2021. The mosque will benefit from safeguarding from further decay and the provision of structural support.

For the mosque in Alektora the design tender will be launched in March, whilst conservation is expected to start in the fourth quarter of 2021. The structure, which features a carved inscription above the keystone of the builder’s name, will benefit from safeguarding from further decay.

At the mosque in the village of Avdimou/Evdim the design tender will be launched in March, whilst conservation is expected to start in the fourth quarter of 2021. The mosque will benefit from safeguarding from further decay and the provision of structural support.

Finally, at the mosque in the village of Tera the design tender will be launched in March, whilst conservation is expected to start in the fourth quarter of 2021. The mosque will benefit from safeguarding from further decay.