Girne Municipality, Beylerbeyi Mukhtar, Green Peace Movement, Bellapais Protection and Development Association organised the 14th Cyprus Silk Cocoon Festival which was held on 4th and 5th May.
The festival, which was held in Bellapais Monastery car park area, included various music concerts, dance and folklore shows. The opening ceremony of the festival was attended by President Mustafa Akıncı, Minister of Labour and Social Security – Zeki Çeler, Girne Mayor – Nidai Güngördü, Beylerbeyi Mukhtar – Niyazi Engin and Secretary General of the Green Peace Movement – Doğan Sahir.
President Mustafa Akıncı, in his speech at the opening of the festival, said that Bellapais is one of the most beautiful places in Cyprus, not just Girne. He added that the products made from the silkworm were also contributing to tourism and handicrafts.
President Akıncı, met with the Mayor of Girne, Nidai Güngördü, and said the event in Beylerbeyi (Bellapais) was significant in terms of content and congratulated the organisers of the event.
Zeki Çeler, Minister of Labour and Social Security, pointed out the importance of festivals in the region to promote a product and region. He stressed that with the 14th Cyprus Silk Cocoon Festival it is one of the oldest festivals in Girne. Minister Çeler thanked those who had contributed to the festival for the last 14 years.
Girne Mayor Nidai Güngördü, said in his speech that 14 years ago, the festival was started with the initiative of the Green Peace Movement, and the Municipality was included in the following years. Nidai Güngördı pointed out that thanks to the festival, awareness of the silk cocoon was created and a cooperative was established for this purpose. Güngördü emphasized that the aim of the cooperative is to bring together the producers of the products, who are engaged in manual work but have difficulty in selling them.
Beylerbeyi Mukhtar Niyazi Engin said that they would do their best to promote the silk cocoons and handicrafts in the village to tourists and in addition the introduction of activities in the primary school will be transferred to the next generations.
Speaking at the closing of the festival, the Secretary General of the Green Peace Movement, Dogan Sahir, said that the festival started when the silk cocoon work was about to disappear and that its value has been recognised by raising awareness. Dogan Sahir, said with this awareness of the silkworm, the mulberry trees also gained value.