Exploring the Old Nicosia (01.11.2009)

1 November 2009, Nicosia

A visit to the old city of Nicosia with the purpose of bringing together young people and children from both communities and confronting them with the city's history - which substantially reflects the island’s history as well. Nicosia exists for thousands of years. The ancient city lies buried beneath the modern city and has only been explored to a minimal extent. Today it is the only divided capital of the world.
More than 300 participants took part from both sides of the green line. At the beginning of the event, the Mayor of Nicosia Ms Eleni Mavrou welcomed the participants and urged them to continue their efforts. The representative of Cyprus to the European Commission also welcomed the participants and congratulated them for their optimism. Immediately after, the participants formed mixed groups of 12-14 people depending on age,  accompanied by group leaders and teachers, and poured into the streets of old Nicosia. Around thirty teams with maps and directions followed different routes passing sights and attractions. During the exploration, participants had to gather information, observe and learn things. The aim was to learn about our common heritage: churches and mosques, buildings with architectural value, historic streets and the unique walls of Nicosia. The usually quiet old Nicosia became alive and filled with youth.

The event was organized by the bi-communal teachers’ platform United Cyprus, the youth organization Soma Akriton, the Association for Historical Dialogue and Research, the Reconciliation organization and the Representation of the European Commission in Cyprus.