The Cypriot Ministry of the Interior welcomed Pope Francis’ decision to accept the relocation of 50 migrants from Cyprus to the Vatican, describing the decision as a “significant initiative.”
In a press release issued on Friday, the Ministry hailed the Pontiff’s visit to Cyprus as “a historic moment for our country, but also a milestone in the relations between the Republic of Cyprus and the Holy See,” adding that “this visit coincides with a period when the Republic of Cyprus is facing a vast number of challenges both at a national and international level.”
The Ministry also noted that among the 50 migrants to be relocated are two persons who remained up until today in the Buffer Zone, for whom the Republic of Cyprus has been persistently urging the European Commission to relocate to another member state in order to avoid additional undesirable political problems for the country.
“This symbolic move by the Vatican comes as a recognition of the difficulties that Cyprus is facing with the ever-increasing flow of migrants illegally crossing the Green Line to the areas under the effective control of the Republic of Cyprus, arriving through the occupied territories from Turkey, a country that systematically instrumentalizes the migration issue against Cyprus,” the Ministry noted.
Concluding the Ministry said that Pope Francis’ initiative “is this proportionate, substantial solidarity that we also seek from our European partners”, expressing “hope that the symbolic move of Pope Francis and the Holy See sends a clear message and contributes in this direction.”