Demonstration in Cyprus against the use of British bases in the Gaza war

“British military bases, leave! Cyprus is a bridge for peace and the collaboration of peoples,” read a poster from the Cyprus Peace Council (CPC) which organized the demonstration in front of the Royal Air Force (RAF) base. of Akrotiri, a British Overseas Territory since the independence of Cyprus in 1960.

“We cannot accept that, from Cyprus, we are involved in attacks against neighboring peoples and countries (…) Cyprus must have a neutral status,” Tassos Costeas, 59, president, told AFP. of the CPC.

According to an activist news site in the United Kingdom, the Akrotiri base was a departure point for British and American flights to Israel, a close ally of the United Kingdom and the United States, to which military equipment was allegedly sent. books.

Costeas delivered a letter to the base administration demanding an end to Cyprus’ involvement in the war in Gaza, but also an end to bombing in Yemen.

Four Typhoon fighter jets, based in Cyprus, took part in British-American strikes carried out this week on sites of the Houthi rebels in Yemen.

“We condemn the complicity” of the Akrotiri base in the war in Gaza and Yemen, “We do not want to participate in it as Cypriots. It is scandalous that they use our lands to support these atrocities”, he said. castigated Natalia Olivia, 37, member of the United For Palestine group.

A spokesperson for the British Ministry of Defense assured this week that “no RAF flight to Israel had carried deadly cargo.”

British forces support “the delivery of humanitarian aid to Gaza” and have “delivered 87 tonnes of British and Cypriot aid to Egypt for the people of Gaza”, he added.

“We don’t want Cyprus to be involved in one way or another,” said Adonis Floridas, a 65-year-old Cypriot, fearing that the operations of British bases would make Cyprus “a target”.

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