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The Cyprus Veterans’ Association W.W.II is the only veterans’ organization in the country with more than 750 members, both Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots. The members belong to the following main categories:

  • Ordinary members who had served more than six months in the Cyprus or Allied Forces during the second world war.
  • Associate members can become those Cypriots who had served in the Cyprus or Allied Forces during the First World War.
  • Honorary members are proclaimed by the General Council, on the recommendation of District Councils, persons who had offered exceptional services for the advancement of the aims of the Association.

From the time of its formation in 1964, the Association has focused its efforts on the fight to secure adequate benefits for veterans and their dependants. It has assumed the responsibility for perpetuating the tradition of Remembrance in the island and each year it organizes the Poppy – Remembrance Campaign to remind the public of the debt we owe to those who gave their lives in the defence of freedom during two world wars. Contributions made during the campaign are used to assist needy veterans and their families.

Organization
In order to protect and advance the interests of its members and to achieve more effectively the aims of the Association, the administrative work was organized into branches. There are 6 District Branches with their own Chairmen and executives. However, national policy is developed by the General Council which is composed of representatives of each Branch. The General Council meets twice a year and it is represented on a more frequent basis by an elected Executive Committee which meets once a month to resolve issues as presented. The Association’s magazine, “The Veteran”, has a circulation of 600 copies and is produced in May each year. It is distributed free of charge to members and to friends of the Association.

Legislation for veterans
One of the early demands submitted to the Government by the Association, was the adoption of Legislation under which army service in the Cyprus Regiment or Cyprus Volunteer Force during 1939 – 1945, be treated as pensionable service. The Council of Ministers considered favourably this request and a Bill was sent to the House of Representatives which was passed into law and was published in the Government Gazette as Law No 2/81 of 13 February 1981. It was subsequently decided by the courts that this Law was covering civil servants only.

Because employees of Public Utilities and Municipal Corporations were also eligible to pension, the Association decided to press a claim so that their army service be treated as pensionable service. As a result, Law No 100(I)99 dated 16.7.1999 was passed by the House of Representatives, enabling the employees of all public utilities with army service between 3 September 1939 and 15 August 1945, to treat it as pensionable service.

Finally the Association pressed for the official recognition by the State of the contribution of the Cypriot Volunteers in the struggle for freedom during the Second World War by issuing a Register with their names, to be placed in public libraries. The Government agreed to this demand by appointing a 7-member committee, which is responsible for the preparation of the Register and who will also prepare and deliver to each volunteer an honorary diploma for his participation in the Second World War and his contribution for the predominance of world freedom.


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