Former leader of Cyprus dies

Former Cyprus president Tassos Papadopoulos, a hardliner who resisted foreign pressure to reunify his divided island at any cost, died of lung cancer yesterday at the age of 74. Politicians in Cyprus and Greece expressed their respects for the British-trained lawyer and veteran of Cyprus politics who is to be buried in Nicosia on Monday. «He will remain in history as one of the protagonists of our country’s modern history,» Papadopoulos’s successor Dimitris Christofias said. Greek President Karolos Papoulias expressed his «deepest sadness,» noting that Papadopoulos had «faithfully served his country… striving with passion and consistency for the future of Cypriot Hellenism.» Papadopoulos oversaw the accession to the European Union of the island’s south after rallying Greek Cypriots to reject a United Nations peace deal for the island in 2004.

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