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    Girls raped by Turkish soldiers are considered prostitutes by the Church and society!

    We refuse to shed the conservative and religious experiences of the past and remain religious and underdeveloped. It's moments like these that I feel ashamed to be Cypriot.

    By George Koumoulli

     

    As much as I was shocked by the description of the successive rapes of “Ioanna” by the Turkish soldiers (see POLITIS, August 17), I was even more shocked by the hideous treatment of her horrible ordeal by the Church and society.

     

     

    The priest of the village refused to give her communion as if she sinned for being raped, while she herself says: “We were the dirty ones, the scumbags of the village” (she and her friend Maria who was also raped).

     

     

     

    The ill-fated Ioanna still remembers her mother forbidding her to go out of the house so as not to provoke the villagers! And her classmates – influenced by a fundamentalist and underdeveloped society – ostentatiously avoided Joanna as if she were a leper.

     

     

     

    Instead of offering warmth, excess love, affection, sympathy, compassion to Ioanna to relieve, even for a while, the pain she is experiencing, we treat her like a bitch. Yes! We refuse to shed the conservative and religious experiences of the past and remain religious and underdeveloped. It’s moments like these that I feel ashamed to be Cypriot.

     

     

     

    In her interview, Joanna teaches us what love means, which everyone should read, especially our priests. I quote from her interview: “Don’t think it’s just us. And our soldiers raped Turkales. And they hurt like us.”

     

     

     

    Despite the torture she suffered at the hands of Turkish soldiers, this does not change the love and compassion she feels for the common people living in the occupied territories. It is indeed a sign of Christian love that we regret to note is alien, not only to our priests, but also to Cypriot society.

     

     

     

    *Opinions expressed in this article are the author’s own and do not necessarily reflect the editorial policy of CypriumNews.

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