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The families of martyrs showed great response and strongly condemned the BKP and AKEL delegations during yesterday’s visit to Muratağa-Sandallar and Atlılar Martyrdoms. Flowers that were placed at the Atlılar Martyrdom were gathered and thrown back onto the committee members by the families.

Police teams showed great efforts to avoid events and had difficulty in controlling the families of martyrs.

The families who learned about the visit of the party delegations under the presidency of the BKP President İzzet İzcan and AKEL General Secretary Andros Kiprianou, gathered at the gate of the Muratağa-Sandallar Martyrdoms and announced that they would not allow access and they strongly rejected the visit.

Atlılar village headman Olsan Karabatak made a statement at the martyrdom and said that extensive security measures were taken by the police.  Karabatak stated that the BKP President İzzet İzcan had never participated in the commemorative ceremonies at Muratağa-Sandallar Martyrdom on August 14th, even once in 41 years, and accused BKP President İzzet İzcan as making a “show off”.

Indicating that there were 27 martyrs in the two mass graves, Karabatak said that they will never allow anyone to make shows and politics over the martyrs. Karabatak also reported that they strongly condemned the BKP and the AKEL delegations.

On the other hand, BKP President İzzet İzcan made a press release at Atlılar Martyrdom and stated that they were working with all their power to prevent the two communities from living the same pains again.  Emphasizing that the two communities should not be confronted again, İzcan said that they were working hard so that the two Presidents reach a success in the peace process. Explaining that the innocent people were killed in both the North and South of the island, İzcan stated that they condemned those who carried out the massacres.

Turkish Cypriots were killed by the Greek Cypriots on 14 August 1974 at Muratağa, Sandallar and Atlılar villages.  126 Turks were killed, the youngest was 16 days old and the oldest was 95 years old, and they were buried in mass graves during the massacre. Villagers of Muratağa and Sandallar were buried in the same mass grave.

The United Nations described the massacre as “a crime against humanity.”

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