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Dear User,
We welcome you to the website of the Embassy of the Republic of Cyprus to the Kingdom of The Netherlands. The purpose of our website is to provide information on the political, economic, cultural, and social life of Cyprus and on the services which the embassy provides to the public of the Netherlands, whether it be general, travel regulations, visa requirements, etc., as well as to our own citizens.
The website is accordingly composed of various sections regarding for instance our Foreign Policy, the Cyprus problem and its various aspects as well as the efforts aimed for its solution, the E.U. affairs, tourism and consular matters. It also provides useful links to websites of the government and to other relevant sites. Our latest news section is updated weekly to provide you with information on the latest developments in Cyprus.
We hope you find our website useful and that it will also give you a glimpse of Cyprus, an island country in the eastern Mediterranean, which is steeped in history and legend and will further your interest in our country.
All of us at the Embassy remain at your service and would welcome your comments on our website which is designed to meet your needs and interests. Yours Sincerely,Embassy of the Republic of Cyprus

New items

29 July 2014

Announcement regarding an appeal by individuals to the International Criminal Court

Since 1974, Turkey has implemented a systematic policy of colonization of the occupied part of Cyprus, from which it expelled approximately 170.000 Greek Cypriots, in an attempt to change the demographic character of the island and create faits accomplis. This Turkish policy for the alteration of the demography of Cyprus has been condemned by the General Assembly, the Commission of Human Rights and the Council of Europe.

The policy of colonization is expressly prohibited by the 4th Geneva Convention of 1949 Relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War (Article 49 (6)), which stipulates that the “Occupying Power shall not deport or transfer parts of its own civilian population into the territory it occupies.” According to the 1998 Rome Statute of the International Criminal Court (Article 8 (2) (b) (viii)), “the transfer, directly or indirectly, by the Occupying Power of parts of its own civilian population into the territory it occupies, or the deportation or transfer of all or parts of the population of the occupied territory within or outside this territory” is a war crime.

In this context, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs notes the initiative of MEP, Mr Costas Mavrides, and Cypriots Against Turkish War Crimes to submit to the Prosecutor of the International Criminal Court a communication concerning the settlement activity of Turkey within the territory of Cyprus, requesting the Prosecutor to initiate, pursuant to Article 15 of the Rome Statute, an investigation into the crimes committed within the Court’s jurisdiction. The Government of the Republic of Cyprus is at the Court’s disposal to provide documentation on the colonization of the occupied area of Cyprus by Turkey.

18 July 2014

Statement of the Minister of Foreign Affairs for the victims of the plane crash in Ukraine

We were shocked with the news of the Malaysian airlines flight travelling from Amsterdam to Kuala Lumpur that was shot down over Ukrainian airspace yesterday.
On behalf of the Government and the people of Cyprus we extend our sincere condolences to the families of the victims onboard while conveying our sympathy to the Prime Ministers of the Netherlands and Malaysia as well as to the governments of all other nations of which citizens have senselessly lost their lives in this tragic incident. We call for an immediate investigation of the circumstances around the air crash by an independent international committee.
Regretfully this dramatic event is a most painful collateral illustration of the ongoing instability which has been precipitating in the Eastern provinces of Ukraine, and should serve as wakeup call of why it is imperative that this conflict is brought to an end without delay .
At this critical juncture, and with the humanitarian situation on the ground fast deteriorating, all sides have the responsibility to demonstrate necessary restrain, implement a durable cease fire and proceed swiftly to constructive and meaningful dialogue.

17 July 2014

International Criminal Justice Day: Why Cyprus is joining the celebrations - Article by the Minister of Foreign Affairs

17 July 1998 saw the adoption of the “Rome Statute”, the treaty on the basis of which the International Criminal Court (ICC) came into existence. To mark this milestone as well as the significant gains that have been achieved more broadly in international criminal justice, 17 July has been established as “International Criminal Justice Day.”

Cyprus and I personally proudly join the commemoration of this occasion and the international campaign to underline that “Justice Matters”. Some brief information on the work of the ICC and the ideals it represents should suffice to understand why we have deemed it important to do so.

The ICC is today the only permanent, international criminal court with the competence to prosecute the perpetrators of the gravest of crimes namely genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes. Moreover, provided a sufficient number of Member States ratify the relevant amendment to the Rome Statute, the Court will acquire jurisdiction also over the Crime of Aggression. These are all crimes which deeply offend the conscience of humanity.

The roots of the Court can be traced back to at least the Nuremberg and Tokyo trials after World War II which were followed, more recently, by the ad hoc and hybrid international tribunals such as the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia, the International Criminal Tribunal for Rwanda and the Extraordinary Chambers in the Courts of Cambodia. The creation of the ICC was thought by many to be a mission impossible. Yet for the last twelve years it has been tangibly contributing to the advancement of international justice.

As of today, the ICC has 122 Member States whilst more States have expressed their intention to join. Twenty-one cases in eight countries have been brought before the ICC which has rendered its first verdicts. Additionally, a number of other preliminary examinations are being carried out. The Court is also giving a voice to the victims of crimes by providing for their participation in its proceedings.

As is the case with any young institution in pursuit of ambitious goals, the Court has not been without its challenges. And new ones will no doubt arise. A number of challenges have been overcome thanks to the determination and spirit of cooperation that have prevailed amongst all stakeholders in this project. I am convinced that these same qualities shall guide us in addressing existing and future challenges. Our decisions - and this goes especially for us Member States - need to continue promoting the independence, credibility and efficiency of the Court.

Cyprus has been a committed supporter of the Court from its very beginning, a commitment which I reiterate today. I can attribute this to at least three main factors. Firstly, we consider it a moral obligation to promote the accountability for atrocities irrespective of where these are committed. Secondly, we are steadfast supporters of the strengthening of international law as a means to a more just and peaceful international order. And thirdly, the fact that our country itself continues to experience the effects of injustice committed for forty years, renders the mission of the Court even more salient for us.

It is indicative that Cyprus, a Member of the ICC as early as 2002, has been one of the first countries to ratify the amendments to the Rome Statute adopted in Kampala in 2010, including the amendment concerning the Crime of Aggression. Our country has also enjoyed the privilege of contributing one of its best-known judges, Judge Georghios Pikis, who served on the Court between 2003 and 2009. Currently Cyprus is actively engaged in, among other things, the promotion of the universalization and full implementation of the Rome Statute, elements which are vital for the achievement of the Court’s mission. It is our hope that in the time to come more States will be joining us in this collective endeavour.

On International Criminal Justice Day we rightly celebrate the important advances that have been achieved in international criminal justice. But even more work lies ahead. Current events compel us to reiterate our enduring concern at the horrendous crimes still being committed in many parts of the world.

These painfully remind us that justice does matter and that it matters a great deal. This is why I have deemed it important for our country and I to join the commemoration of International Criminal Justice Day.

19 September 2013

Repatriation of four icons of the occupied Church of Christ Antiphonitis in Kalograia from the Netherlands

The Ambassador of the Republic of Cyprus in the Hague Dr Kyriacos Kouros and the Director-General of Culture and Media at the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science of the Netherlands Mrs. Marjan Hammersma signed on September 18, 2013 a Deed of Transfer to the Republic of Cyprus of four icons which were stolen from the occupied Church of Christ Antiphonitis in Kalograia. The signing took place during a ceremony at the Dutch Ministry of Education. The case relates to the icons of Saint Peter, Saint John, Saint Mark and Saint Paul which date approximately to the 16th century. The President of the Synodical Committee for Monuments and Art of the Church of Cyprus, Bishop of Neapolis Porfyrios, the Conservator of the Department of Antiquities Mrs. Stella Pissaridou and Mrs.Tasoula Georgiou-Chatzitofi, founder of the NGO ‘’Walk of Truth’’, were also present at the ceremony.

The icons are repatriated following a request submitted by the authorities of the Republic of Cyprus to the Netherlands, based on the provisions of the 2007 Dutch Law on restitution of cultural goods originating from an occupied territory. The said Dutch Law is based on the 1954 Hague Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict and its First Protocol, which, inter alia, provides that each contracting state undertakes to return to the authorities of the State of origin cultural property which has been exported illegally from an occupied territory. It is worth mentioning that the Church of Cyprus claimed the repatriation of the said icons in Dutch Courts in the period 1995-2002.

The Republic of Cyprus expresses its warm appreciation to the Netherlands for the return of the icons to Cyprus. This gesture underlines the strong friendship and the unwavering commitment of both countries for the protection of the common European cultural heritage, of which the cultural heritage in the occupied part of Cyprus constitutes an inseparable part. It also reaffirms the need for respect of the provisions of the 1954 Hague Convention and its Protocols by all the contracting states.

7 December 2012

Cyprus Presidency Contemporary dance performance by Lia Haraki


Concept/Creation/Performance: Lia Haraki
Music and Sound Design: Pandelis Diamantides
Mentoring: Evi Haraki Mahera
Lighting Design: Alexander Jotovic
Sound engineer: Yiannos Ionas

More information:

5 December 2012

Luncheon with the Dutch Prime Minister Mr. Mark Rutte
“In the framework of the Cyprus Presidency of the Council of the European Union, the Embassy of the Republic of Cyprus in The Hague hosted on Wednesday 5 December a working luncheon featuring as keynote speaker the Dutch Prime Minister Mr. Mark Rutte.The lunch was attended by the Ambassadors of the Member States of the European Union, Croatia and the candidate countries, a European Commission representative and officials from the Netherlands.In his speech, the Dutch Prime Minister said that despite the difficult circumstances, the trust the Netherlands had in the Cyprus Presidency proved justified. He thanked Cyprus , under the guidance of which, he said, important steps have been taken to move Europe away from the crisis. Mr. Rutte also referred to the recent formation of the new Dutch Government and the governmental program. He went on to express his views on the relationship of the Netherlands with the European Union, the Multiannual Financial Framework 2014-2020, the crisis in the Eurozone and other current issues on the agenda of the European Union.The Ambassador of Cyprus, Mr. Kyriacos Kouros, in his introduction, presented the activities and achievements so far of the Cyprus Presidency and expressed Cyprus’ commitment to continue to work hard until the end of the year. He also highlighted the importance of the role of the Cyprus Presidency as an honest broker especially during the current challenging period for the European Union.There was also an opportunity for questions and comments by the participants and a discussion with the Prime Minister”.

12 October 2012

Nobel Peace Prize awarded to European Union
The European Union has been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize for six decades of work in advancing peace in Europe.
The committee said the EU had helped to transform Europe "from a continent of war to a continent of peace".
The award comes as the EU faces the biggest crisis of its history, with recession and social unrest rocking many of its member states.
The last organisation to be given the prize outright was Medecins Sans Frontieres, which won in 1999.
Announcing the award, Nobel committee president Thorbjoern Jagland acknowledged the EU's current financial problems and social unrest.
But he said the committee wanted to concentrate on the EU's work over six decades of advancing "peace and reconciliation, democracy and human rights".
In a written statement of the Cyprus Presidency of the Council of the EU, President Christofias expresses the satisfaction of the Cyprus Presidency over the decision and notes that "it is a great honour for the EU to receive this prize."
"The award is a timely recognition of the EU’s achievements over sixty years in promoting peace and reconciliation, democracy, human rights and the rule of law. These are the values that lie at the core of the European Union and which the EU promotes in order to make a better Europe both for its own citizens and for the whole world," he notes.
He adds that "the awarding of the Nobel Peace Prize underlines the EU’s increased responsibility to continue pursuing peace efforts both in the European continent and worldwide."
"However, in order to fully accomplish the peace vision of the founding fathers of the EU we need to achieve lasting peace in Western Balkans, Cyprus and the Middle East," he points out.

    3 October 2012

    Cyprus EU Presidency Concert
    Saskia Lankhoorn plays a piano portrait of the Cypriot composer Yannis Kyriakides

    In the framework of cultural events on the occasion of the Cyprus Presidency of the European Council, the Embassy of Cyprus in The Hague together with Korzo Theater, organized on 3-10-2012 a piano concert based on works of the award-winning Cypriot composer Yannis Kyriakides.During the concert and after a welcome note by the Ambassador of Cyprus, Dr. Kyriacós Kouros, the distinguished Dutch pianist Saskia Lankhoorn played a piano portrait of Yannis Kyriakides, presenting his works for piano and multimedia from the last twenty years, from the student work “Piano Movement” to the recent work of “True Histories”. Other works presented were “Legerdemain”, “hYDAtorizon” and “Politicus”.The concert was attended by approximately 140 people, including Ambassadors, the President of the International Criminal Court, Mr. Sang-Hyun Song, the Director of European Affairs of the Foreign Ministry of the Netherlands, Mr. Jaap Werner, the Chief of Protocol of the Municipality of The Hague, Mr. Mark Verheul, as well as members of the Cypriot community in the Netherlands.

    18 September 2012

    Briefing for the Embassies of EU Member States at International Court of Justice in The Hague

    In the framework of the Cyprus Presidency of the EU Council, the Embassy of Cyprus in the Netherlands organized on 18 September a briefing for the Embassies of EU Member States in The Hague. The main speaker at the meeting was the Registrar of the International Court of Justice (ICJ), Mr. Philippe Couvreu. The meeting took place at the Peace Palace which houses the ICJ and was attended by, among others, Ambassadors and legal experts of the Member States of the EU.

    In his speech, the Registrar made a historical reference to the establishing Treaties of the Court by the United Nations in 1945 and referred to the way the Court operates and to the nature of the decisions and opinions issued by the Court. He also spoke about the challenges faced by the Court, and its future prospects. Mr. Couvreu also thanked for the assistance of the Embassy of Cyprus in the organization of the meeting, saying this practice was revived during the Cyprus Presidency.

    In his intervention, the Ambassador of Cyprus in The Hague, Mr. Kyriakos Kouros, said the timing of the meeting was appropriate since in a few days, in the framework of the 67th sessions of the General Assembly of the United Nations, the High Level Meeting for the Rule of Law will take place. In this direction he referred to the role of the ICJ in the peaceful settlement of disputes between states and to the contribution of the Court to the strengthening of the Rule of Law worldwide.

    The International Court of Justice is the principal judicial organ of the United Nations. The Court is empowered to settle legal disputes submitted by states, while it also issues opinions on legal questions submitted by authorized United Nations organs and specialized institutions.

    13 October 2012

    Friends of the International Criminal Court Meeting

    On 13 September 2012, Ambassador Kyriacós P. Kouros hosted a meeting of the “Friends of the International Criminal Court” at the Cyprus Residence. The main speaker at the meeting was the new Court Prosecutor, Ms. Fatou Bensouda, who presented her vision for the Office of the Prosecutor in regards to advancing the prosecutions on gender crimes and improving the Office’s practices, based on lessons learned from past experiences. The meeting was well attended by representatives of Embassies in The Hague and NGOs. The “Friends of the International Criminal Court” is an informal group based in The Hague, New York and Geneva, which aims to pro-actively promote and support the Court. The group’s coordinator in The Hague is Mr. Sasa Obradovic, of the Serbian Embassy.

    25 July 2012

    Ambassador meets students of The Hague Academy of International Law

    On 25 July 2012 Ambassador Kyriacós P. Kouros hosted at the Cyprus Residence two groups of students from Afghanistan, Kenya, Spain, Greece, Italy, Iran, Germany and Mauritius. The students were mainly lawyers and diplomats attending the summer courses of The Hague Academy of International Law. Ambassador Kouros presented a general overview of diplomacy from the perspective of Cyprus, the history and latest developments on the Cyprus Question and discussed the effects that the world economic crisis has had on Cyprus. The Ambassador described the work and the priorities of the Embassy of Cyprus in The Hague both on the bilateral and multilateral level. In respect to the latter, he explained the Embassy’s work representing Cyprus in the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons and the International Courts and Legal Organizations and Institutions based in The Hague.”. Finally, the Ambassador briefed the students on the priorities and activities of the Cyprus Presidency of the Council of the EU in the second half of 2012 and answered students’ questions.

    2 July 2012

    Exhibition Cyprus Insula
    Maps of Cyprus from the Low Countries

      The exhibition is organised by Museum Meermanno, the Embassy of the Republic of Cyprus and the Special Collections of Leiden University on the occasion of the Cyprus Presidency of the Council of the European Union in the second half of 2012.In this small exhibition in the 19th century book room of Museum Meermanno you can see the most important maps of Cyprus from Dutch and Flemish atlases and travel accounts and some of the rare Venetian examples on which these maps were based. This exhibition shows the history of the mapping of Cyprus, as well as thehistory of Dutch map production, especially the history of atlas publishing in the Southern and NorthernNetherlands.The Low Countries played an important role in the mapping of the island of Cyprus, because Antwerp andlater Amsterdam were the main centres of map and atlas production in the 16th and 17th century. Beside the famous atlases of Ortelius, Hondius and Blaeu, some rare works are exposed like a small woodcut atlas of Zacharias Heyns, the first atlas published in Holland in 1598.

      25 June 2012

      Presentation of the Cyprus Presidency agenda for the second half of 2012
      by the Deputy Minister to the President for European Affairs, Ambassador Andreas D. Mavroyiannis
      Clingendael institute

      The rotating Presidency of the Council of the EU is a duty, an obligation and a responsibility carried out by all EU member states (and when we say Council, we mean the representatives of the 27 member states at Ministerial level). So we will be chairing the Council of the EU for six months, starting the 1st of July of 2012. This role entails steering discussions within the Council; deciding the issues to be on the Council agenda; mediating and negotiating on behalf of the Council with other institutions, in particular with the European Parliament; while, at the same time, regulating and ensuring consistency and coherence among the various poles of political power within the Union. Setting realistic goals, the Presidency will act as an honest broker, aiming to achieve compromises and successfully achieve progress and reach an agreement on the issues to be discussed during those six months. More ...

      23 June 2012

      Composer Andys Skordis wins Buma Toonzetters Prijs 2012

      The Buma Toonzetters Prijs 2012 goes to Andys Skordis (1983) for his work The deeper you go...the deeper you go...the deeper you go...deeper you Saturday night 23 June the Dutch based and Cyprus born composer received the prize of € 10.000 from Buma Cultuur director Frank Helmink. The international professional jury, chaired by Lucas Vis, considered the work to be the best Dutch composition of the past season. The award ceremony took place during the fifth edition of the Toonzetters festival at the Amsterdam Muziekgebouw aan 't IJ.The jury, consisting of Lars Petter Hagen (Ultima Oslo Contemporary Music Festival, Norway), Andrew Kurowski (BBC, United Kingdom), Tadeusz Wielecki (Warsaw Autumn, Poland) and Lucas Vis (conductor, chairman, the Netherlands) was once again surprised by the great number of remarkable compositions. The jury picked ten compositions from nearly one hundred entries written by a great number of new names. These ten compositions all deserve to be heard more often; they should be on the repertoire of many ensembles and orchestras. Picking them from nearly one hundred works is no sinecure, but the jury was unanimous about Andys Skordys’s composition. Some quotes from the jury report: The composer uses a very original treatment of the concept to make the large form. It's a piece made with great craft, that makes impact on the emotional as well as on the psychological level. A piece with dramatic quality which pulls the listener in, also reflected in its title. The deeper you go...the deeper you go...the deeper you go...deeper you was premiered on 11 June 2011 at the Composers’ Festival 2011 in Amsterdam. At the Toonzetters festival the piece was performed by members of the Residentie Orchestra and VOCAALLAB.Sena Performers Toonzetters Prijs At the same event the Zapp 4 string quartet received the Sena Performers Toonzetters Prijs worth € 10.000. Earlier this week this ensemble was awarded this prize for the performer(s) of the best program of the previous season, according to a professional jury of Dutch programmers.

      21 June 2012

      The President of the Republic awards Dutch Euro-Parliamentarian, Mr Hans van Baalen, with the Grand Cross of the Order of Merit of the Republic of Cyprus
      The European Union should take much more responsibility and point out to Turkey that without the withdrawal of all Turkish occupation forces in the north and without the recognition of the Republic of Cyprus there can be no membership of Turkey in the EU, Dutch Euro-Parliamentarian, Mr Hans van Baalen, said today during a ceremony at which he was awarded with the Grand Cross of the Order of Merit of the Republic of Cyprus by the President of the Republic, Mr Demetris Christofias. More ....

      21 June 2012

      Credentials OPCW

      The Ambassador of the Republic of Cyprus to the Kingdom of the Netherlands, H.E. Dr. Kyriacós Kouros, presented his credentials as Permanent Representative of the Republic of Cyprus to the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons (OPCW) to the Director-General of the Organization, H.E. Mr. Ahmet Üzümcü, on Thursday, 21 June 2012.During the meeting that followed, Ambassador Kouros expressed Cyprus’s full support to the work of the OPCW and its commitment to the principles on which the Organisation is based. The willingness for close cooperation was also expressed, given the important role the European Union plays in the OPCW and in view of the upcoming Cyprus Presidency of the Council of the EU.

      20 June 2012

      The new Ambassador of Cyprus to the Netherlands Dr Kyriacos Kouros presented his credentials to Queen Beatrix

      During a ceremony held on June 20, 2012 at Noordeinde Palace in The Hague, the new Ambassador of the Republic of Cyprus to the Kingdom of the Netherlands Dr. Kyriakos P. Kouros presented his credentials to Her Majesty Queen Beatrix.Presenting his credentials, Ambassador Dr. Kouros conveyed the greetings of the President of the Republic of Cyprus Mr. Dimitris Christofias and reassured that he will work for the further enhancement of the existing very good relations between the two countries. During the meeting that followed the ceremony, Ambassador Dr. Kouros briefed on the latest developments in the Cyprus problem and the prospects of finding a viable and functional solution. The EU economic crisis and the situation in Cyprus, energy issues and the prospects after the discovery of hydrocarbons in Cyprus EEZ, the assumption of the Presidency of the Council of the EU by Cyprus, the objectives set and the challenges it involves as well as other international issues were also discussed.

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