Villages on British bases angered over development plan delays

Residents of communities in the British bases are angry because an agreement made four years ago to regulate building private residences has still not been finalised, it was reported on Monday.Community leader of Erimi told daily Phileleftheros that the communities have waited long enough.According to the news article, every effort by the affected communities to resolve the problem has been ignored. They have sent memos to the interior and foreign ministers and other officials, but the doors remain closed they said. In addition, letters have been sent to heads or representatives of parliamentary parties asking for intervention to implement the agreement.“We have been sending letters to one and all without anybody responding, We are second-class citizens,” Panicos Hadjichambris from Erimi told the paper.“Our communities have been imprisoned within the boundaries of the British bases, with a building factor of zero. We inherited the land from our parents and we cannot use it because its value is nil. As residents we do not know where we belong. Are we citizens of the Republic of Cyprus or citizens of the English government?”George Kyprianou, chairman of the community council of Akrotiri, another affected village told the Cyprus Mail on Monday that the communities have been waiting for a very long time for the situation to be resolved. However, he believes a solution is close at hand.“The negotiations are in their final stages,” he said.The British bases said they are doing their best to resolve the situation but it was a complex issue which needed necessary negotiations.“The SBA administration and the Republic of Cyprus are working together to refine the formal planning zones and policy for the areas in the SBAs that are subject to the Non Military Development Arrangement (NMD),” they said in a statement to the Cyprus Mail. “The work in defining the planning zones and policy has not yet been completed. Alongside this, work is being carried out by the administration in evaluating the legislative and procedural requirements needed for the new planning regime, which will include legislating for strategic environmental assessments. We are all working to implement the NMD Arrangement as quickly as we can.”The historic agreement regarding the right to develop was signed on January 15, 2014 by the then foreign ministers of the two countries, Ioannis Kasoulides and William Hague.The agreement lifts restrictions on the development of land in the non-military areas in the bases areas that have been in place since Cyprus gained its independence in 1960.It applies to properties extending to approximately 198 square kilometres, representing 78 per cent of the British bases area. Under the 1960 Treaty of Establishment, properties within the Akrotiri and Dhekelia SBAs could only be used as agricultural land and no building development was permitted. The 2014 agreement is meant to benefit three municipalities and 17 communities including Kolossi, Episkopi, Ypsonas, Xylophagou and Dherynia.Immediately after the signing of the agreement, intensive consultations took place between the Republic of Cyprus and the British bases on the preparation and adoption of the policy statement.To this end, a competent committee was set up, consisting of representatives of the department of urban planning and housing, as the coordinating body, the district officers, the union of municipalities and communities, the communication and works ministry, the agriculture ministry and representatives of the British bases management.    You May LikeMyFinance10X The Interest on Your Savings: Too Good to Be True? for BraveA Browser that’s 200% Faster than for BraveUndoHabit TribeMore Parents Are Now Gluing Pennies To The Bottoms of Their Kids ShoesHabit TribeUndo Brazil prison riot kills 52, with 16 decapitatedUndoFresh case of Blue Nile virus in northUndoUrgent work planned on collapsed section of Nicosia wallsUndoby Taboolaby Taboola read more