30th Marathon of Love for Missing Persons takes place this week

30th Marathon of Love for Missing Persons takes place this week

The 30th Marathon of Love for the persons who went missing during the Turkish invasion against Cyprus in 1974 takes place this week.

Archbishop of the Church of Cyprus Chrysostomos II, who is also President of the Pancyprian Fund of the Love Marathon for Missing People, said yesterday that the missing persons issue is a humanitarian one and urged Turkey to finally change its stance and cooperate.

Turkey and the Turkish army, he said, are obliged to provide the authorities with the relevant information so that the tragedy of your people comes to an end.

“Turkey must give all information needed by the relatives of the missing, who want to know about their fate, so that the tragedy of the relatives, the parents, the brothers and sisters, and all people of Cyprus comes to an end”, he said.

The Marathon of Love will include a series of events and activities in Cyprus as well as abroad as well as petitions that will be submitted to the UN and the EU offices in Nicosia. In addition, a delegation will travel to Brussels to hand over a petition to the President of the European Parliament and hold meetings with EU, EP and Council of Europe officials.

The delegation will give a press conference in the European Parliament where also a photo exhibition on the issue of missing persons will take place.

Cyprus has been divided since 1974 when Turkey invaded and occupied its northern third. Numerous UN-backed negotiations with the aim to reunite the island under a federal roof, have not yet yielded result.

As a result of the 1974 invasion, 1,619 Greek Cypriots were listed as missing, most of whom soldiers or reservists, who were captured in the battlefield. Many of those missing were last seen alive in the hands of the Turkish military. A total of 1073 remains have been exhumed by the Committee of Missing Persons, 546 of which have been identified with the DNA method (421 Greek Cypriots and 125 Turkish Cypriots). Only 27% of all missing persons have been identified so far.