In order to handle the massive problems caused by the Turkish invasion of Cyprus in 1974, with 200.000 Greek Cypriots displaced in their own country, the Government of the Republic of Cyprus set up a “Special Refugee Fund”. To support the Fund and to reduce the financial impact of the refugee problem, Cyprus Post issued a special refugee stamp, which, under legislation, must accompany every object to be posted.

The 3 mils stamp from the 1971 Definitive Issue, which was overprinted with 10 mils value and the wording “Refugee Fund” in black, was the first refugee stamp.

At the end of 1974 the first official 10 mils refugee stamp was issued, depicting a Cypriot refugee old woman holding her grandchild on her shoulders.
In 1977 a new refugee stamp was in circulation, valued at 10 mils, in a black and white design by the well-known Greek engraver Tassos, depicting a refugee boy from Cyprus, sadly sitting in front of the barbed wires of occupation.

This particular refugee stamp was issued until 1984, when it was re - issued in the same black and white design valued at 1 cent. From 1988 until 2007, the same refugee stamp was issued in grey background. In 2008, it was re-issued at the value of €0,02. Since 2009, the refugee stamp has been re-issued with the same design, but with a different-coloured font. This year the refugee stamp has been re-issued in a grey-blue background.

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The representations on the two €0.34 and €0.41 cent stamps take us to the festive spirit of the great holiday of Christmas.

The €0.64 cent stamp illustrates the mural painting of the worshipping Panagia Arakiotissa and Kecharitomeni (Our Lady of Araka full of Grace) from the Church of Araka in Lagoudera dating back to 1192. This masterpiece of Arakiotissa is unique as to its content and symbolisms. The posture of Jesus leaning in his mother hands reminds us of the image of Christ-child as eucharistic symbol in Melismos. The characteristic earring worn by the Jesus has been interpreted by a passage of the Exodus and with verses of the Old Testament in relation to the Passover sacrifice which is read in churches on the holiday of Candlemas.

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Mahatma Karamchand Gandhi (that was his real name) was an Indian politician, thinker and revolutionary. He was born on 2 October 1869 in Porbandar and murdered on 30 January 1948 by an extremist Hindu in favour of the partition of the country.

He was the leader of the Indian independence movement against British rule and the person behind the idea of passive non-violent resistance against the oppressors. His teaching affected the international peace movement and along with his asceticism contributed to his establishment as one of the universal symbols of the 20th century.

His family endorsed the ideas of the local religious movement which advocated the precept of “cause no injury” to any living being. Believers were not eating meat and considered fasting to be a self-cleansing method.

He was first named Mahatma in 1915 by Indian Nobel prize winner and poet Tagore, which in Sanskrit means “high-souled”.

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20th anniversary of EMS cooperative

Express Mail Service (EMS) was created at the 22nd Congress of the Universal Postal Union (UPU) in Beijing, China on 10 September 1999.

EMS is an international postal express mail service for documents and merchandise, managed by the UPU postal operators, connecting every business and citizen with more than 180 countries and destinations worldwide.

The aim of the EMS is to promote cooperation between its members to provide a high-quality and reliable express mail service worldwide.

75th Anniversary of the International Civil Aviation Organisation

The International Civil Aviation Organisation is a UN specialised agency. Established on 1.12.1944 under the Chicago Convention on International Civil Aviation, the ICAO has 192 State parties and its headquarters in Montreal, Canada.

ICAO’s core mandate is to promote a safe, efficient, secure, economically sustainable and environmentally responsible civil aviation sector and to facilitate passengers.

Cyprus validated the Chicago Convention on International Civil Aviation by Law No 213/83 according to which ICAO’s standards and recommendations are immediately applicable to domestic law in Cyprus.

70th Anniversary of the Council of Europe

In 2019, Cyprus Post participates actively in the celebrations of the 70th anniversary of the Council of Europe by issuing a commemorative stamp. The main message of the anniversary is: “Our Rights, our Freedoms, our Europe”. During its 70-year operation, the Council of Europe has significantly contributed to promoting human rights, democracy and the rule of law.

The Republic of Cyprus is an active member of the Organisation based in Strasbourg, since 24 May 1961. The Republic has also undertaken the Presidency of the Committee of Ministers five times and the last time was from November 2019 to May 2017. The active participation of the Cyprus Delegation to the Parliamentary Assembly and the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of the Council of Europe is remarkable.

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By the end of the 19th century the first athletic associations were established in Cyprus for the promotion of classical sports and gymnastics.
The active athletic associations in Cyprus are six.
“OLYMPIA” ATHLETIC ASSOCIATION (GSO)
“Olympia” Athletic Association (GSO) was established in 1892. It is the oldest association in Cyprus, the second oldest athletic association in Greece and a founding member of “SEGAS”.
It is the first association that introduced female sports in Cyprus. GSO organized the First Pancyprian Games in 1896 and the First Panhellenic Games in Cyprus in 1925. GSO athletes represented Cyprus in the 1896 Olympic Games.
“PANCYPRIA” ATHLETIC ASSOCIATION (GSP)
“Pancypria” Athletic Association (GSP) was established in 1894 in Lefkosia upon the initiative of advocate Theofanis Theodotou and doctors Antonios Theodotou and Aristodemos Finiefs.
In 1902, GSP had its own stadium, which was renamed in 1934 to “GSP Stadium of Evgenia and Antonios Theodotou” after its great benefactors.
Following an agreement with the Cyprus government, the old GSP stadium was traded for a new, modern stadium which opened its doors in 1999.
GSP athletes honour Cyprus in international sports games.
“ZENON” ATHLETIC ASSOCIATION (GSZ)
“Zenon” Athletic Association (GSZ) was established in 1896 under the name “The Stadium”. It was later renamed to “Zenon” Athletic Association.
In 1929, the association had its own stadium “GSZ” with significant contributions from the Holy Monastery of Kykkos and the late D. N. Demetriou.
In 1989, the Association was transferred to the new sports facilities of the “New GSZ Stadium”.
“KORIVOS” ATHLETIC ASSOCIATION
“Korivos” Athletic Association was established on 28th November 1898 following the initiative of Tilemachos Kallonas.
Mr Kallonas, who was a scholar, named the association after Coroebus of Elis, the first winner in the running event in the Ancient Olympic Games. “Korivos” Athletic

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For a sixth consecutive year, member states of the Postal Union for the Mediterranean “Euromed Postal”, issue a stamp with a common theme. The theme for this year is “Traditional Costumes”.
The Cyprus stamp depicts two traditional costumes, one for women and one for men.
Cypriot costumes are of a conservative nature, but various and graceful. Each region in Cyprus had its own distinct every-day costume, with its unique characteristics in colour, fabric and decoration.
The main variations of the woman’s costume is the urban, the “Karpasiitiki” (named after the region of Karpasia, in the northeast of the island), the “Pafitiki” (named after the city of Pafos, in the west of the island) and the “orini” which was worn on the mountainous areas of Cyprus.
The basic part of the man’s costume is the multi-pleated “vraka”. Along with “vraka”, a dark, cotton, striped shirt was worn for everyday use and a silk one was worn to Sunday church service.

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Bonelli’s eagle Aquila fasciata

The Bonelli’s eagle is the only specie of eagle in Cyprus. It breeds on crags and in isolated areas away from people. In Cyprus it also makes its nest on large pine trees. It feeds on medium-sized animals and birds, such as hares, partridges, pica picas, even ducks. Usually it flies alone but sometimes we can see them fly in couples doing circles up in the sky. It lives permanently in Cyprus so we can see it all year round. It breeds in the Pafos Forest, as well as in Pentadaktylos, Akamas, Pentaschoino, in Diarizou Valley and in Ag. Sozomenos. In Cyprus there are approximately 40 – 50 couples.

Griffon Vulture Gyps fulvus

The griffon vulture is the largest raptor in Cyprus and the most threatened species. The population has reached alarming levels and successful matings are very few. In the past the population of the species in Cyprus was at a very healthy level and it was relatively common, however in the last decades the species is at risk of extinction. The vulture breeds on crags or mountains and prefers open spaces soaring over them looking for food (dead animals). It plays the role of a “cleaner” since it helps nature stay healthy and clean and prevents the spreading of diseases.

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Glafkos Clerides was the 4th President of the Republic of Cyprus. During his ten-year term of office (1993 – 2003) Cyprus achieved the completion of the accession negotiations with the EU, the harmonisation with the Acquis Communautaire and a great deal of reforms and significant projects.

Glafkos Clerides was born 100 years ago, on 24 April 1919. In 1936 he was expelled from the Pangyprion Gymnasium for being strongly in favour of Demotic Greek. He left school and continued his secondary education in London and then he studied law.

During World War II he voluntarily served in the British Royal Air Force. In 1942 his plane was shot down by the Nazi and he remained a prisoner of war for 3 years.

When he came back to Cyprus he practiced law and participated in the EOKA struggle for the liberation of the island.

Clerides participated in the 1959 London Conference on Cyprus and during the transitional period 1959–1960, he served as Minister of Justice. In the first Presidential Elections, he backed Archbishop Makarios III even though the other candidate was his father, Ioannis Clerides.

In 1960, he was elected to the House of Representatives and later on he was elected President of the House of Representatives up to July 1976. From 1968 to April 1976 he was the representative of the Greek Cypriot community in the intercommunal talks.

During the critical period after the Turkish invasion, he became acting President of the Republic until the return of Archbishop Makarios. For his work he received a commendation from the then President of the House of Representatives.

In 1976 he founded the Democratic Rally (Demokratikos Synagermos) and he was being elected MP since 1981. In 1993 he was elected President of the Republic.

Glafkos Clerides passed away on 15 November 2013 at the age of 94.

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In order to handle the massive problems caused by the Turkish invasion of Cyprus in 1974, with 200.000 Greek Cypriots displaced in their own country, the Government of the Republic of Cyprus set up a “Special Refugee Fund”. To support the Fund and to reduce the financial impact of the refugee problem, Cyprus Post issued a special refugee stamp, which, under legislation, must accompany every object to be posted.

The 3 mils stamp from the 1971 Definitive Issue, which was overprinted with 10 mils value and the wording “Refugee Fund” in black, was the first refugee stamp.

At the end of 1974 the first official 10 mils refugee stamp was issued, depicting a Cypriot refugee old woman holding her grandchild on her shoulders.
In 1977 a new refugee stamp was in circulation, valued at 10 mils, in a black and white design by the well-known Greek engraver Tassos, depicting a refugee boy from Cyprus, sadly sitting in front of the barbed wires of occupation.

This particular refugee stamp was issued until 1984, when it was re - issued in the same black and white design valued at 1 cent. From 1988 until 2007, the same refugee stamp was issued in grey background. In 2008, it was re-issued at the value of €0,02. Since 2009, the refugee stamp has been re-issued with the same design, but with a different-coloured font. This year the refugee stamp has been re-issued in a grey-blue background.

Collection


The icon of the Birth of Christ is found on the temple of the church of Our Lady (Panayia) Odigitria in Galata. The icon was hagiographed by the monk and later abbot of the Holy Church of Stavrovouni, Dionysios, who came from Galata, in 1930 and there is a strong Russian influence in the hagiography.
The icon of the Birth depicts the unspeakable mystery of the incarnation of God, by presenting in micrography the whole universe and all God’s creation. God, humans, angels, animals and nature are expressed with a mystical spirituality and strong light. This is why the black colour of the Cave is not shown.
Christmas is children’s favorite time. Having their most festive smile on, they either sing carols to friends and relatives or they play in the snow.
The 34, 41 and 64 cent stamps depict exactly this joy of the children for the most magical and special season of the year.

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