Share it now!

On Friday, 5 November 2010, from 17:00 to 22:00, KISA in cooperation with communities of migrants, refugees and foreign students, as well as Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot bicommunal, antiracist and human rights organisations are organising the Rainbow Festival in Larnaca, at the Finikoudes seafront (Seafront Stage). The Festival will be addressed by the Head of the European Commission Representation in Cyprus, Ms Androulla Kaminara, and the Head of the Authority against Discrimination and Racism of the Ombudsman’s Office, Mr Aristos Tsiartas.

As it is known, the Festival in Larnaca, and not in Limassol as initially planned, is being held after the announcement of racist events by the “Greek Resistance Movement”, with the participation of the “Pancyprian Anti-Occupation Movement” and the “Movement for the Salvation of Cyprus”. According to their announcements, these events are aimed against migrants, refugees and human rights organisations, such as KISA, which is being anathematised as a “social abscess and the enemy’s fifth column, funded by foreign centres”, as well as the Cypriot state, which is being accused that “from its birth, it fights against the Hellenism of Cyprus in order to eliminate it”.

To the messages of the chauvinists and racists that project and cultivate hatred and hostility against any diversity, instigate and promote racism and discrimination and lead to regression and obscurantism, we offer the messages of the Rainbow Festival, the largest antiracist and multicultural event in our country, and we unequivocally and categorically declare that for us migrants and refugees not only do they not constitute a threat for our culture and identity but they are equal human beings, an integral part of our society and with considerable contribution to our society.

On the basis of the remarkable success of last Sunday’s Rainbow Festival in Nicosia, KISA and the cooperating communities, organisations, groups and individual activists call for an even larger participation in the Festival in Larnaca in order to strengthen its hopeful messages and to decisively refute the dangerous ideologies of racism, chauvinism and neo-fascism.

Spreading racism and intolerance cannot be protected by the cloak of freedom of expression. The messages and the target of the announced march of the chauvinists-racists constitute, in our opinion, violation of provisions of the penal code as well as the constitution. We also call on the authorities to take on their responsibilities and to ensure that on Friday the chauvinists-racists will not threaten or insult in any way with their slogans and presence the Festival and the participants.

The Festival will include:

  • Cultural programme with traditional dances, music and songs from groups and organisations of migrants and refugees, which will close with live rock music from Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot bands.
  • Exhibitions and stands of organisations and communities
  • Food from various countries and drinks

    Sponsors of the 13th Rainbow Festival:
    Ministry of Interior, Ministry of Education and Culture, Youth Board of Cyprus

    The Festival in Larnaca is being organised with the support of the European Commission Representation in Cyprus. The content of this press release is the sole responsibility of KISA and can under no circumstances be regarded as reflecting the position of the European Union.

    For free transport to-from the Festival in Larnaca, please call KISA on 878181.

    3 November 2010