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pursuant to Rule 133 of the Rules of Procedure

on the destruction and looting of works of art in the north of Cyprus

Dominique Bilde

Motion for a European Parliament resolution on the destruction and looting of works of art in the north of Cyprus  

The European Parliament,

–  having regard to the 1954 Hague Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict,

–  having regard to the 1970 UNESCO Convention on the means of prohibiting and preventing the illicit import, export and transfer of ownership of cultural property,

–  having regard to Resolution 1628 (2008) of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe,

–  having regard to Rule 133 of its Rules of Procedure,

A.  whereas, according to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Cyprus, since the Turkish occupation of the north of Cyprus 500 Orthodox churches and chapels have been looted, vandalised or demolished and 133 have been desecrated, 15 000 paintings have disappeared, 77 churches have been converted into mosques, 28 churches and chapels are now used by the military and 13 are used for agricultural purposes, not counting the use of these places of worship for commercial purposes, such as the St Anastasia Monastery in Lapta, which has been turned into a hotel;

B.  whereas the Hague Convention states that looting is prohibited and that criminal proceedings are to be instituted;

1.  Calls on the Commission and the High Representative for the Common Foreign and Security Policy to remind Turkey of its responsibilities under the aforementioned Treaties and to demand that it grants experts access to the north of Cyprus to assess the damage and that it provides support to the investigations.

Last updated: 10 January 2019Legal notice