December 10, 2023

Cleaning has  started, and improving and preserving is the bigger task and that’s where lots more help and support are needed

Report No 1

By Heidi Trautmann…

On 28th September 2023 at 17.00 hrs a group of supporters of the project ‘A clean and safe cemetery’ met at the International Cemetery to discuss the statement by the Mayor, Murat Şenkul, and the plan of activities offered.  I have hereunder the statement again for your kind attention (Google translation).

Persons present were:

Tuğçe Ören (Muhtar), Hatice Salih Kerimgil, Oya Kutsal, Dr. Mebrure  Altuğ, Chris Elliott (, Beverly and Stephen Everett (representing TFR); Selçuk and Günseli Buket, Albert Bauer and me Heidi Trautmann.

-A Whatsapp Group Site was established for easy information access.

-We were happy to have Tuğçe Ören with us as a representative, mediator, and contact who knows the details of the Belediye plan.

  1. We noticed that cleaning works had started the same day, trees were unnecessarily cut, there should be supervision and more care should be taken not to damage the fragile cross constructions. It is a cemetery with very old graves.
  2. Green nets will be spanned along the entire walls to prevent passers-by to throw their rubbish across.
  3. Warning signs to respect the cemetery will be attached on top of the walls.
  1. The gate is to be locked with key duplicates given to those who have direct interest…

(Suggestion: what about a lock to open with a number code??) There is still the question if the cemetery should be made accessible to tourists, but how?

  1. Lights and cameras…. Acc. to the Muhtar Tuğçe Ören, it will take a while as electric lines have to laid…
  2. There should be a shed made available for garden tools. I volunteer to donate a garden rake.
  3. Research has been started to find out if there are still relatives of the souls resting there.

   The Ministry of the Interior is to be contacted too in this respect.

  1. A suggestion was made to contact the churches, to perhaps get in touch with the church in the South for cooperation, as there are many old Greek graves.
  2. Suggestion was made to find out the chances for an EU-fund for a cultural heritage worthy project.
  3. The one water tank is about to collapse. Chris Elliott from CyprusScene has offered to donate his garden water tank. The Muhtar Tuğçe Ören will help with disconnection there, transport and connection on site. A big thank you.
  4. Volunteers’ help might be available through TFR channels.
  5. Suggestion was made to talk to the Pia Bella Hotel, also the Sports Club Manager, and inform them of our problems.
  6. There is a car parked within the cemetery. Who is it and what rights has he got? I think the Belediye would know.
  7. I also want to thank Oya Kutsal to give the cemetery project a place in the big agenda of her own project ‘For a clean Girne’.
  8. Should the list of relatives be found, I suggest that everybody pays a yearly fee for the cleaning of the cemetery. Albert Bauer and I have declared at the meeting that we would.

Please comment on the points if you have suggestions to make. Albert Bauer and I will keep you informed on any progress – or problems – in the cleaning activities.

STATEMENT made by Murat Şenkul  (Google-translated)

Next week, we started in the cemetery known as the Foreigner Cemetery (Roman Cemetery) in Girne, which has been on the agenda of the press and social media recently.

We should also know that there are jobs that cannot be done by us here.

Here are our findings and actions:

  1. There is pollution on the road fronts of the cemetery thrown by passers-by, especially by soft drinks cans and bottles.
  2. There are trees that need to be trimmed and weeds that need to be removed.
  3. Only 1 broken bench rest of them are solid.
  4. So many graves in bad condition.

Things we will do,

  1. Cleaning up the grass
  2. Tree pruning
  3. Lighting with 4 projector
  4. Raising the walls on the graveyard road front with green wire.
  5. Fixing the front door to close.
  6. Putting new trash cans along the road.
  7. Repairing graves with minor fractures.
  8. Installing 1 new bench.

While doing all this, we know that the pedestals of many graves within the cemetery are 50-100 years old have been destroyed, but as it is not our duty to fix them, we do not have such a budget.

The British Cemetery in the area is in a very good condition because British citizens also look after their own cemeteries and the graves of their ancestors.

The foreign cemetery has been largely vacated by the relatives of those who lie here.

Yes, it is among our duties to protect and preserve these places, but the real situation should not be ignored with 2 photos.

The current situation is that those who have relatives or compatriots in the Foreign cemetery come here and do not take care of graves.

The main problem here is the tombstones that have been defeated by time, the rest is the details and we’ll do those details in 1 week.

I hope and wish that the sensitivity we show is also shown by those who sleep here and their relatives.

End of Statement

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