President Nicos Anastasiades appointed on Monday former ambassador Leonidas Pantelides as the Greek Cypriot member of the Committee on Missing Persons (CMP). Pantelides succeeds Nestoras Nestoros whose five-year service as the Greek Cypriot member of the CMP ended earlier this month.
Nicos Theodosiou, who has been an associate at the office of the Greek Cypriot representative of the CMP since 2015, and was Head of Pancyprian Organisation of the Relatives of Undeclared Prisoners and Missing Persons until 2015, had been appointed as the interim member of the Committee.
Government Spokesman Prodromos Prodromou told journalists that the President believes that Pantelides’ contacts and acquaintances from his tenure in the diplomatic corps would help gear up efforts for an even more efficient struggle as regards this sensitive issue of the missing persons.
Spokesman said that the former ambassador, as a member of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the diplomatic service, has a very good knowledge of the issue and has excellent relationships with relatives of missing persons.
Cyprus has been divided since 1974, when Turkish troops invaded and occupied its northern third. Since then, the fate of hundreds of people remains unknown.
A Committee on Missing Persons has been established, upon agreement between the leaders of the two communities, with the scope of exhuming, identifying and returning the remains of missing persons to their relatives. In the past thirteen years, the CMP managed to identify and return the remains of approximately 927 persons, out of 2,002.
(Cyprus News Agency)