Cyprus Orthodox Church to restore historic homes amid outcry

The head of Cyprus' Orthodox Church on Wednesday pledged to rebuild a row of historic homes that were partially demolished next to an under-construction cathedral amid a public outcry over what government officials described as an "unlawful" action.

The office of Archbishop Chrysostomos II told The Associated Press that that the archbishop dispatched a letter to Nicosia municipal authorities promising to restore the church-owned homes to their original state.

A church official, speaking on condition of anonymity because he wasn't authorized to speak to the media about the matter, said the crumbling homes, dating to the beginning of the 20th century, were at risk of collapse and crews were working to render them safe.

The homes were next to a large cathedral now being built on the grounds of the church's headquarters inside of the Cypriot capital's medieval...

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