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President Welcomes Makarios III of Cyprus to Washington

June 5, 1962 - Makarios III, Archbishop, former rebel, and first President of the republic of Cyprus, received tributes and salutes in Washington today at the start of a five-day state visit to the U.S. The 48-year-old prelate, wearing the black robes that he made a symbol of his island’s independence movement, was greeted by President Kennedy and Secretary of State Dean Rusk. He was encouraged in his expectations of economic development loans. “We salute him,” the President said at National Airport this morning, “particularly because of the long and difficult fight he conducted for his country’s independence.” The Mediterranean country of 600,000 persons, situated off the coasts of Turkey and Syria, became independent of Britain in 1960.

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