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Cyprus Mail News and More
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    It is now nearly seven years since UEFA president Michel Platini announced the expansion of the finals from 16 teams

    By Mike Collett

    IT was much derided when announced but UEFA’s decision to expand the Euro 2016 championship to 24 teams has revitalised the qualifying competition with a host of countries daring to dream of making it to a major tournament, often for the first time.

    At the halfway stage, countries such a Wales, Iceland, Northern Ireland, Albania and Norway, who have either never qualified for a major finals or been absent for years, are all in contention for a...


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  • 04/01/15--07:30: The greatest passion
  • Passion Play

    By Bejay Browne

    For the second year running the ‘Passion Play’ will be enacted in the grounds of a historic church in Paphos and this year will take place on Orthodox Palm Sunday.

    Organised by Fr Miguel de la Calle of St Paul’s Catholic Parish, people of all faiths are being encouraged to come together to take part in the performance on April 5, which is the western Easter Sunday this year.

    The Catholic Church in Paphos will be staging...


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    international generic

    The hardline Islamic State group took control of large parts of a besieged Palestinian refugee camp in southern Damascus on Wednesday, witnesses and a monitoring group said.

    The Yarmouk camp, home to up to 18,000 people, has been caught between government forces and Syrian insurgent groups including Islamic State’s rivals such as al Qaeda’s Nusra Front.

    “They pushed from the Hajar Aswad area and Nusra fighters have joined them, they have pledged loyalty to Daesh,” one witness said, using an...


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    Pensioners take part in an anti-austerity demonstration in Athens

    By Costas Pitas

    Anti-establishment protesters occupied several public buildings in Greece and briefly entered the grounds of parliament in Athens on Wednesday, calling for the release of jailed members of a Marxist group.

    Around 20 people entered the courtyard of the parliament building in central Syntagma square.

    “They managed to pass the police in the entrance and they approached one of the main gates of the building, the one that lawmakers and the ministers use to enter the parliament,” a...


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    Nicolas Sarkozy, conservative UMP political party leader and former French president, attends a news conference after the close of polls in France's second round Departmental elections of local councillors at their party's headquarters in Paris

    By Brian Love

    Doubts over Nicolas Sarkozy’s political funding returned to haunt the French ex-president on Wednesday when the prosecutor said investigators had questioned him in an affair that could cloud his chance of a re-election bid in 2017.

    The interrogation came days after his centre-right UMP party beat the ruling Socialists in local elections, a victory seen as boosting Sarkozy’s prospects of running again for president.

    At issue is whether it was legal for the UMP to pay the...


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    police car 2

    By Constantinos Psillides

    A 36-year-old man from Paphos was arrested on Tuesday night, after attacking and threatening to shoot his estranged wife, 35, police said.

    According to the police report, the 35-year-old woman was visiting a friend in Chlorakas, Paphos, along with her two daughters. At around 10pm, the suspect came up to the house and threatened to kill both women. According to the report, the man struck his wife before leaving.

    While the woman visited the Paphos police to...


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    sales

    By Andria Kades

    CONSUMERS were frustrated on Wednesday to find that shops and supermarkets were closed when they had been open on the previous national holiday on March 25.

    “This has been the case since 2006,”was the justification given by Stephanos Koursaris, general secretary of the small business association POVEK that often opposes longer hours and Sunday shopping.

    A confused Ruth Solomou, who had planned to do some shopping on Ledra street in Nicosia and then buy some groceries, was...


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    Firecrackers found in Limassol

    A 32-year-old man has been arrested after a large number of fireworks, firecrackers and smoke bombs were discovered in a house in Limassol on Wednesday afternoon.

    Reportedly, the man, who was seen leaving the building which was under observation by police after a tip off, admitted that he had smuggled a large number of the items  from the occupied areas through Pyla.

    CyBC said that police sealed off the building off for the night and they were to decide today as...


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    Former Laiki strongman Andreas Vgenopoulos

    By Angelos Anastasiou

    DESPITE his unequivocal and repeated denials, investigators have found that former Laiki Bank boss Andreas Vgenopoulos was “close friends and business associates” with Greek ship-owner Michalis Zolotas, owner of the infamous Focus Maritime Corporation which was allegedly serving as a slush fund for bribing political parties and state officials, daily Politis reported on Wednesday.

    Focus has thus far been implicated in the payment of €1m to former Central Bank governor Christodoulos Christodoulou in 2007 – while he...


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    ΦΥΛΑΚΙΣΜΕΝΑ ΜΝΗΜΑΤΑ

    By Evie Andreou

    CYPRUS celebrated the 60th anniversary of the start of the EOKA struggle against British colonial rule on Wednesday, with liturgies and events held island wide.

    In Nicosia, the main service was led by Archbishop Chrysostomos at Saint John’s Cathedral in the presence of President Nicos Anastasiades and other officials.

    Later on, a prayer was delivered at the Imprisoned Graves within the central prisons and wreaths were laid on the graves of those who died during the...