This week in his­tory

Cyprus Today - - OPINION -

THIS week in his­tory last year, mud and wa­ter was dumped in the path of Easter hol­i­day­mak­ers dur­ing work to up­grade part of the sew­er­age sys­tem in Girne’s an­cient yacht har­bour. A mu­nic­i­pal­ity con­trac­tor op­er­at­ing an ex­ca­va­tor was blamed for the in­ci­dent dur­ing re­newal of a pump­ing sta­tion. Head of the Marine Tourism En­trepreneurs Union, Faik Gencer, took pho­to­graphs to il­lus­trate what he called “bad work prac­tice and the state of the har­bour”. A vo­cal cam­paigner for im­prove­ments, Mr Gencer warned that the pump­ing sta­tion work would not solve a 10year leak from sew­ers if the sys­tem con­tin­ued to “back up”.

Also this week in 2017, it emerged that some 200 TRNC po­lice of­fi­cers were to be in­ter­ro­gated as part of ef­forts to root out those sus­pected of hav­ing links to the US-based preacher Fethul­lah Gülen who was ac­cused of be­ing the mas­ter­mind of the pre­vi­ous sum­mer’s coup at­tempt in Turkey. The Po­lice Press and In­for­ma­tion Of­fice were forced to is­sue a state­ment con­firm­ing that an in­ves­ti­ga­tion had been launched af­ter de­tails were leaked by Turk­ish-lan­guage me­dia and on so­cial me­dia.

This week in 2013, a Girne mo­tel re­cep­tion­ist brought in a pair of “hit men” to kill his ex­boss, a court heard. Ab­dus­samed Dur­mufl, owner of the El­izel Mo­tel be­hind the an­cient yacht har­bour, known as “fi­amo”, was beaten about the head with an iron bar and stabbed nine times when the two — who had checked into the ho­tel as guests — at­tacked him in March 2012, it was said. Pros­e­cu­tors claimed that the al­leged killers, Volkan Pir­inç and Sami Akkaya, were brought in for the grisly job by İh­san Atar, who used to work at the El­izel.

This week in 2008, own­ers of homes with swim­ming pools in North Cyprus faced hav­ing to pay more for the priv­i­lege in a gov­ern­ment crack­down on wa­ter us­age. The drought was of­fi­cially de­scribed as the worst in 100 years and the whole coun­try was de­clared a drought area. Then En­vi­ron­ment and Nat­u­ral Re­sources Min­is­ter Mustafa Gök­men said a num­ber of mea­sures were be­ing ex­plored, in­clud­ing the in­tro­duc­tion of a new tax for houses with swim­ming pools, to en­sure enough wa­ter was avail­able for drink­ing.

This week in 1998, pos­ses­sion of a “Repub­lic of Cyprus” pass­port would carry a jail sen­tence of up to five years and/or a fine of up to two bil­lion TL un­der tough new leg­is­la­tion ap­proved by TRNC min­is­ters. A 54-sec­tion Bill out­law­ing TRNC cit­i­zens from hold­ing the South Cyprus-is­sued travel doc­u­ment was ex­pected to be pushed through the North Cyprus Par­lia­ment af­ter win­ning back­ing from the Coun­cil of Min­is­ters.

On this very day, April 14, 1970, an ex­plo­sion on board Apollo 13 caused one of the most crit­i­cal sit­u­a­tions in Amer­i­can space his­tory and put the lives of the three as­tro­nauts on board in se­vere jeop­ardy. The ex­plo­sion hap­pened in the fuel cells of the space­craft’s ser­vice mod­ule ap­prox­i­mately 56 hours af­ter liftoff. Apollo 13 suc­cess­fully re­turned to Earth on Fri­day, April 17, 1970.

On April 18, 1955, Al­bert Ein­stein died in hospi­tal in Prince­ton, New Jersey, aged 76. The em­i­nent sci­en­tist and orig­i­na­tor of the the­ory of rel­a­tiv­ity was ad­mit­ted to hospi­tal three days be­fore with an in­ter­nal com­plaint. His work laid the ground­work for many mod­ern tech­nolo­gies in­clud­ing nu­clear weapons and cos­mic science.

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