CYPRUS: Melkonian sale still on the table
The Cyprus Weekly
Nicosia (March 12, 2004)
DESPITE assurances given at the close of last year, the sale of the
Melkonian Armenian school in Nicosia is still on the table, school
committee member Vahak Atamyan said in a written statement this week.
“How ironic, then, that the school is threatened with closure, just as
Cyprus itself is on the threshold of full European Union membership;
the country may be entering Europe, but will it take the Melkonian
school with it?” Atamyan wondered.
The Melkonian Institute, dating back to 1926, is funded by the
US-based Armenian General Benevolent Union (AGBU) along with another
20 or so Armenian schools world-wide. The AGBU has been considering a
general overhaul of its finances for some time, involving the possible
sale of the Melkonian, which is situated in a prime real estate
location and could fetch many millions of pounds.
“The more cynical view the matter as purely financial. Melkonian
occupies a prime site close to the centre of Nicosia and realisation
of capital rather than realisation of academic skills and potential is
held by some to be the current motivating principle,” Atamyan surmised