The award which is considered Europe’s highest honour in the field, was celebrated at a special ceremony held at the premises of the Armenian Church and Monastery at the Arabahment region in Nicosia yesterday evening.
The Mayor of Nicosia Turkish Municipality Mehmet Harmancı and the Mayor of South Nicosia Constantinos Yorgacis also attended the event.
The Head of the European Commission Representation in Cyprus George Markopouliotis, the Secretary General of Europa Nostra Sneška Quaedvlieg-Mihailović, the Architect responsible for the restoration project Paolo Vitti, Christopher Louise from the United Nations Development Programme – Action for Cooperation & Trust in Cyprus (UNDP-ACT) and the US Ambassador to South Cyprus Kathleen Ann Doherty delivered speeches at the event.
The speeches highlighted the importance of protecting the cultural heritage and stressed that such projects would bring the two peoples of Cyprus together and make great contribution to peace.
Architect Paolo Vitti received the EU Prize for Cultural Heritage / Europa Nostra Award for the rehabilitation of the Armenian Church and Monastery in Lefkoşa at the European Heritage Awards Ceremony on the 11th of June 2015 at the City Hall of Oslo in Norway.
The project had begun in 2007 as part of a larger peace-building effort in Cyprus.
It was designed both to restore one of the most noteworthy parts of the island’s cultural heritage and to provide the Armenian, Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot communities with the opportunity to work together with international experts to preserve their common heritage.