(21st Congress – November 2010)
In recent years, a large number of overseas Cypriots have returned to Cyprus. Repatriation is not a simple affair; it involves difficulties and problems, especially for the younger generations.
The state has pledged to tackle the problems of our repatriated fellow citizens with social sensitivity. The organisations of repatriated Cypriots, headed by the Cyprus Association of UK Repatriated Cypriots, have played an important role in the promotion of the solution of these problems.
The separation of the issues concerning repatriated Cypriots from those handled by the Overseas Cypriots Service and the determination exhibited by the Christofias government have contributed to the solving of many problems that were pending for years. These include:
– The provision of incentives for the acquisition of a first home;
– The right of Cypriots abroad to information about the labour market in Cyprus and their registration in the computerised register;
– The publication of a booklet on the rights of repatriated Cypriots;
– The right to health care in the first year after repatriation.
At the same time, serious efforts are being made to provide additional incentives and to give solutions to the problems daily faced by repatriated Cypriots.
AKEL has contributed decisively to promoting solutions of repatriated Cypriots problems within and outside of the House of Representatives and will continue its efforts to support them. Of course, problems still exist and the state must tackle these with more care and compassion and offer incentives to encourage the return and permanent settlement of many more of our compatriots. We – as a state and as a people – have a duty to show warmth and affection towards repatriated Cypriots and to accept and integrate them in society under decent conditions. AKEL is aware of the problems they face and will continue to work towards solving them. Our repatriated compatriots are part of Cypriot society and it is our duty and obligation to integrate them within it.
Intervention of Georgos Koukoumas, member of the C.C. of AKEL and the International Relations Department, at the Hearing “Palestine: What’s Next?” organized by GUE/NGL2015-07-1
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