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Joy and despair in Europa League (updated)

Apollon players celebrate their victory over Lokomotiv

By Andreas Vou

It was a night of the starkest of contrasts for Apollon and Omonia against the two sides from Moscow as the Limassol club pulled off a sensational 1-4 victory against Lokomotiv while Omonia suffered injury-time agony against Dynamo in a 1-2 loss.
After just two minutes, it had looked as though Gaossou Fofana had put Omonia ahead but it was chalked off for offside. Their 2-2 draw in Moscow last week had given them a narrow...

APOEL in Champions league ‘Group of Death’, City get tough draw

Cyprus champions APOEL, who beat Danish side Aalborg to seal their place in the group stage on Tueday, have been drawn in the 'Group of Death' with Barcelona, PSG and Ajax

By Andreas Vou and Mike Collett

APOEL have been handed an extremely tough Champions League task after being pitted against Barcelona, Paris Saint-Germain and Ajax Amsterdam in the so-called ‘Group of Death’.

Giorgos Donis’ side have not met any of the aforementioned trio in any competition in their history though their last Champions League campaign ended against Barca’s arch-rivals Real Madrid in the quarter finals.

The Cypriot champions will forever be associated with that famous journey in the 2011-12 season...

Renewed call for truth commission

Forensic scientist digging for remains of a Missing person

NON-GOVERNMENTAL organisation Truth Now, yesterday called on the state to ratify the Convention for the Protection of all Persons from Enforced Disappearances, which Cyprus signed in 2007
The group, marking International Day of the Disappeared, also said it would keep up the pressure on the government for the creation of a truth commission in Cyprus.
“It is indeed a paradox that the Republic of Cyprus, while it has signed the Convention in 2007, it has nonetheless not proceeded...

Remanded for stolen goods


FOUR Polish men, two 29-year olds, a 32-year old and a 23-year old, were remanded for four days in custody by the Famagusta District Court, after police found in their possession a number of items that police believe to be stolen.
Police searched the suspects’ homes late on Wednesday night and discovered 92 pairs of sunglasses, four cameras, a headset, seven speakers, two electric shavers, eight mobile phones, a laptop, men’s perfumes, a number of watches as well as...

Islamic State executes dozens of Syrian army soldiers

Tribal fighters carrying their weapons pose for photographs during an intensive security deployment in Haditha

By Sylvia Westall and Mariam Karouny

Islamic State fighters executed scores of Syrian soldiers captures when the militants seized an airbase in the province of Raqqa at the weekend, according to a video posted on You Tube on Thursday.

The video, confirmed as genuine by an Islamic State fighter, showed the bodies of dozens of men lying face down wearing nothing but their underwear. They were stretched out in a line that appeared to be dozens of metres long.


Anastasiades in Brussels


PRESIDENT Nicos Anastasiades departs on Friday morning for Brussels, where he will participate in the extraordinary meeting of the European Council.
According to an official statement, the issues on the Council’s agenda include the election of the new President of the European Council and the election of the new High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, and the situations in Gaza, the Ukraine, Iraq, Libya and Syria, as well as the common action of the...

UN says 43 Golan Heights peacekeepers seized by militants

UN seeks release of peacekeepers detained in Golan Heights

By Louis Charbonneau

A group of 43 UN peacekeepers in the Israeli-occupied Golan Heights have been detained by militants fighting the Syrian army, and the world body is working to secure their release, the United Nations said on Thursday.

The detained peacekeepers are from the Philippines and Fiji, a UN official told Reuters on condition of anonymity.

“During a period of increased fighting beginning yesterday between armed elements and Syrian Arab Armed Forces within the area of separation in the...

ALS ice bucket challenge raises thousands for MD

mayor ice bucket

By Maria Savva
LESS than a week after the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge made its way to Cyprus, the Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA Cyprus) has reported receiving over €4,000 in donations.
Maria Kyriakou, an MDA Cyprus administrative officer, said the figure was an estimate.
“We are unable to announce the exact amount of donations because the contributions are made in various ways, such as with credit cards cleared through JCC, bank accounts and messages from mobiles. We...

‘Cauldrons’ in Iceland glacier could point to volcano eruption

Warning sign blocks  road to Bardarbunga volcano in north-west region of Vatnajokull glacier

By Robert Robertsson

Ice over Iceland’s rumbling Bardarbunga volcano has melted to reveal a row of 1-km wide “cauldrons”, possibly due to a sub-glacial eruption, the country’s meteorological office said late on Wednesday.

Rumblings at Iceland’s largest volcano system for about a week have raised worries of an eruption that could spell trouble for air travel. In 2010, an ash cloud from the Eyjafjallajokull volcano closed much of Europe’s airspace for six days.

The Met Office said on its website...

BoC shareholders approve capital increase (Update 3)

CEO John Hourican (L) with chairman Christis Hassapis at the EGM

By Angelos Anastasiou
BANK OF Cyprus (BoC) shareholders overwhelmingly approved a €1.0 billion capital raise on Thursday, the biggest foreign direct investment in the island’s history.
The increase was put to the vote at an EGM. Just over 87 per cent of present shareholders voted in favour. Turnout was almost 42 per cent.
Announcing the result of the shareholders’ vote, BoC chairman Christis Hassapis said that the approval marked the start of a new era for the...

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