The tomb of Makedonitissa
Last week me and more four collegues went with our lovely coordenator to some places of Nicosia. There were some really good days because of the company and the exciment of visiting some new places with such cypriot history involved, which I always appreaciate, especially if I’m living in the country.
So, one of the places we went was the Tomb of Makedonitissa which is a military cemitery combined with war memorial for the greek cypriot and greek officers and soldiers who died defending Cyprus during the Turkish invasion in 1974.
This was the place where one Greek Nord Noratlas (airplane) was sot down by fire, during Operation “Niki”, which it was a military operation of the Greek Army to send some elements of the Greek special forces by air to help the Cypriot National Guard against the Turkish invasion forces
For I can tell but not being really sure,the soldier that survived the attack died last year so we don’t have no one to testify anymore.
Still the pilot of Niki 11 (Squadron Leader George Mitsainas) described the scene that night:
“I was nearing the runway when I noticed flares in the sky, very close to the aircraft. I was perplexed because I couldn’t understand why the Cypriot soldiers defending the airport did that. It soon became clear those red flashes in the dark sky were not flares, but anti-aircraft fire. To make matters worse, hundreds of armed citizens also opened fire against us, as they mistook the Hellenic aircraft for Turkish. It was like a firework display, albeit a very lethal one.”
In 1979, some remains were exhumed from Lakatamia and sent back to their families in Greece. However, only twelve commandos were properly identified through DNA sampling
Now, it’s a place for family and people to go honor the great, courageous and altruistic officers and soldiers.
It is being watched by some new officers and soldiers with one of the airplanes positioned there always reminding the immensity of it and to never forget the disaster.
It is located in west Nicosia,at Engomi.