A major project entitled ‘The renovation of Apostolos Andreas Monastery and its Environment’ commenced yesterday.
This project is being financed by the TRNC and there were various dignitaries accompanying Prime Minster Irsen Kucuk, including Tourism Minister Unal Ustel and Environment and Culture Minister Hamze Saner.
The initial phase will consist of building an asphalt car park with capacity for 70 cars. The following phase will be to build pavements.
The second phase of the project will be to construct gift and souvenir shops, cafes, landscaping and accommodation.
The whole project is expected to be completed by June 2013.
In his speech, Mr Kucuk pointed out that the monastery itself needed renovation work and called on the Greek Cypriots to be involved. However he said that if no contributions were forthcoming, then the TRNC would carry out this work anyway.
In a recent statement, Greek Cypriot Archibishop Chrysostomos II stated that he would rather see the monastery fall than support renovation if the Church of Cyprus is not formally acknowledged as the rightful owner.