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ELIAS KANNAOYROS

Elias Kannaouros fell in battle during the Turkish invasion of 1974. Up until the year 2000, he was thought to be a missing person. He was buried in the Military Cemetery of Lakatameia and his remains were identified using the DNA method. His funeral was held with military honours in Ipsonas on October 15th 2000 and his statue was unveiled in Lofou by the minister of Defence Mr Kyriakos Mavronikolas on September 18th 2005. What is noteworthy is that the hero’s statue is located in the forecourt of the Primary School of Lofou.

Elias Kannaouros was born in 1954 in Ipsonas and he graduated from Thekleio Gymnasium in 1972. He enlisted in the National Guard in the same year.

So, let’s find out more about hero Elias Kannaouros through the following excerpt taken from a text titled “Lofou – A traditional rich village of Lemesos”, which was written by philologist Akis Theodorou and historian Christos Pouyioukas:

“The Turkish invasion found Elias Kannaouros and his co-fighters in the trenches of Agios Pavlos, in the area around the horse-racing track of Agios Dometios. He served in the 211 Infantry Battalion and was head of the By Pass National Guard post which guarded the road leading to the villages of Ortakioyiou and Kioneli. The army camp of the Turkish Forces stationed in Cyprus (TURDYK) was located within 500 metres from the post and a bit further behind was the army camp of the Greek Forces of Cyprus (ELDYK). On the right of the Post were three other National Guard posts, namely the “Paloukia”, “Mavrommatis” and “Central Prisons” posts. In the morning of July 20th sergeant Kannaouros and his comrades were fighting under constant heavy gun and air-force bombing. On the night of July 22nd, the front line posts were attacked. The Turks attempted to outmaneuver the Greek Forces’ camp from the side aiming to attack the airport of Nicosia. On the next day, on July 23rd, although a cease-fire agreement was announced, the Turkish invaders continued to move advance.  

      In the meantime, between the first and the second invasion, Elias and his comrades started creating strongholds. During the second invasion they bravely manage to defend and hold on until August 16th. The battle began at dawn. Petros Nicoalou, his co-fighter, gave the following testimony: “At some moment, I heard Elias saying, “Teacher, Yiannakis Pappoulis has been killed”. I ordered him to find shelter in the houses of Agios Pavlos. I haven’t seen him since then”. Elias Kannouros fell in battles and was buried at the Military Cemetery of Lakatameia as an unknown soldier” (p27).  

Sources:
Lofou Community Council

Text obtained from the Association of Expatriates of Lofou website: Akis Theodorou and Christos Pouyioukas, LofouAtraditionalrich village of Lemesos”. August 2009, p. 26-28 (http://salofou.org/xroniko.pdf)

 

 
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