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Successful activism and the Cyprus issue

April 23, 2019 at 5:29pm

Between April 5-7, Youth for Exchange and Understanding (YEU) Cyprus hosted a structured dialogue which focused on promoting peace in the island through activism.

People from the Turkish and Greek Cypriot, Armenian and Maronite communities of the country looked at ways in which activism can successfully influence the Cyprus issue.

Assuming the role of activists, the participants were asked to design actions which can encourage intercommunal contact and improve the relations between Cyprus’ different ethnic and religious groups.

After a three-day brainstorming they came up with the following ideas:

  • Creation of a critical thinking high school module. Special emphasis should be given on viewing historical and cultural issues through a critical and non-nationalistic lens.
  • Collection of the opinions of youth on the Cyprus issue through questionnaires and survey analysis. The results will be publicised and sent to the Greek and Turkish Cypriot negotiators in order to be discussed during the talks.
  • Demilitarisation of the old city of Nicosia through EU and local support. The check points will be moved outside the walls in order to create a common public space in the buffer zone.

Representatives of Unite Cyprus Now also participated in the dialogue and gave advice on activism movements.

An educator from the Association for Historical Dialogue and Research (AHDR) gave a critical historical presentation of the Cyprus issue.

The conference was held in Ledra Palace Hotel in the buffer zone of Nicosia.

It was supported by the Cyprus Youth Council.

YEU Cyprus is an NGO which aims to foster closer cooperation and better understanding among the young people of the world through the exchange of information, experiences and ideas.

It organises and delivers training courses, youth exchanges and EVS projects, focused on youth development, raising awareness, capacity building and empowering the voices of young people.

It advocates on the rights of young people. Some of the fields it deals with are human and minority rights, racism, xenophobia and extremism.

Established in 1995, it is considered to be one of the most active organisations of the island realising several activities both on international and local level.

Find more information about YEU’s activities and the opportunities it offers here.