The Cyprus Mail marks 70 years

Financial Mirror (Cyprus) - - FRONT PAGE -

On Novem­ber the English­language the old­est pub­lished news­pa­per on the is­land, will cel­e­brate its 70th an­niver­sary, a re­mark­able achieve­ment for a tightly knit, fam­ily-run pub­li­ca­tion that prides it­self on its in­de­pen­dence and ob­jec­tiv­ity.

When Ja­covos ‘Jaco’ Ja­co­vides pub­lished the first is­sue of the

– then, just a tiny, twopage tabloid – on Novem­ber 2, 1945, World War II had just ended. In a time of pa­per ra­tioning, power cuts and an in­creas­ingly re­pres­sive Bri­tish colo­nial gov­ern­ment, he took a big financial gam­ble.

For the pa­per’s read­ers it was a gam­ble that paid off. Through the pages of the they were kept in­formed of the pro­found im­pact of the post-war years on Cyprus. Events ranged from the de­ten­tion in Cyprus of thou­sands of Jewish refugees try­ing to break the Bri­tish block­ade and reach Pales­tine in the late 1940s, to the rise of EOKA and its de­mand for Eno­sis in the 1950s.

From the flawed in­de­pen­dence of 1960 to the in­ter­com­mu­nal trou­bles of 1960s, and from the coup and Turk­ish in­va­sion of 1974 to the tor­tu­ous at­tempts to stitch the coun­try back to­gether ever since, the has stayed true to its read­ers pro­vided ob­jec­tive news cov­er­age.

Its ed­i­to­rial and com­ments sec­tions have long been hugely pop­u­lar. The pa­per’s in­de­pen­dence means that noth­ing is above scru­tiny, how­ever con­tro­ver­sial. The

has never been scared to crit­i­cise, whether it’s a gov­ern­ment, a po­lit­i­cal party or a com­pany. This has earned it some en­e­mies down the years, but also a lot of re­spect and read­er­ship loy­alty.

Few pro­fes­sions have changed more in the last 70 years than the news­pa­per industry. When Jaco pub­lished his first is­sue in 1945, his con­cern was about lines of lead print, pa­per avail­abil­ity and buy­ing a print­ing press that could pro­duce a whop­ping six page news­pa­per. Even when he died, more than 40 years later in 1988, those con­cerns had not changed sig­nif­i­cantly.


and Since his two sons took over, the

has had to en­ter a whole new pub­lish­ing world, first with com­put­er­i­sa­tion and more re­cently with the in­ter­net. The pa­per’s print edi­tion is still a source of pride but, like all news­pa­pers, the is also fo­cus­ing on its web edi­tion and meet­ing the needs of its ev­er­ex­pand­ing num­ber of read­ers world­wide who ex­pect con­stantly up­dated news.

The has met th­ese new chal­lenges head-on so suc­cess­fully that it is the num­ber one English lan­guage news web­site in Cyprus. Aside from its loyal Cyprus-based read­ers, the pa­per’s reach is truly global. Peo­ple in Bri­tain, Aus­tralia, the United States and South Africa, for ex­am­ple, now rely on the for their news and views on Cyprus.

As part of the pa­per’s 70th an­niver­sary cel­e­bra­tions, the has been up­load­ing high­lights from its ar­chives ( click on ‘70 Years’).

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