It’s not where I’d recommend you stop for a drink after sightseeing in Nicosia, Cyprus:
Just inside the Paphos Gate, this cafe is one of many victims of the long-standing Cypriot conflict. Within the walled perimeter of the Old Town, it stands directly on the present border, the so-called Green Line, which cleaves the island nation into two halves — one Turkish Cypriot, the other Greek Cypriot. Its windows are blocked with concrete-filled barrels and sandbags, its plaster cracked and shedding, its roof rusted through completely. This is just one of many buildings in the center of the city which have been abandoned or taken over by the UN over the years that the conflict has dragged on.
There are plenty of comfortable and pleasant cafes on both the Turkish and Greek sides of the divided capital, and as tensions ease and EU money flows in, the safe mingling of tourists and locals may instill enough confidence to begin dismantling the physical barriers present in the city. As with all conflicts of this nature, however, decades remain before the emotional scars will truly begin to heal.
Have you visited Cyprus? Share your impressions in the comments.
Check out the rest of this week’s Photo Friday entries here.