Authorities said Tuesday they had traced the bad smell that has troubled Nicosia residents for two weeks to within the United Nations controlled buffer zone.
The Environment Department said farms belonging to Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots across the divide were to blame for people having to hold their noses.
Initially, residents who had reported the persistent pong assumed that the ‘usual suspects’ behind the stench were the Mia Milia wastewater treatment plant in the Turkish-controlled north or one of several pig farms.
Information received said that large amounts of manure deposited on farms within the buffer zone wafted into nearby areas.
In an announcement on Tuesday, the Environmental Department said the source of the foul smell was located in cooperation with the UN.
“It was discovered that Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot farmers placed large quantities of manure in fields within the buffer zone, without subsequently taking appropriate actions to integrate the manure into the soil to reduce the nuisance stench,” the department said.
It said, “intensive efforts” were being made to resolve the problem quickly.
In comments to state radio Monday, Aglandjia Mayor Andreas Constantinou confirmed that a Greek Cypriot farm was part of the problem.
He said a farmer had been storing several tonnes of manure for fertilising crops.
The mayor of the Nicosia suburb said the stench had become “unbearable” for residents.
Farmers have been told to till the manure into the soil and not leave it exposed.
Other affected areas were Yeri, Pallouriotissa and Kaimakli.