photos: Maro Kouri
The time had come for Cyprus to enter the "hated" Memorandum. The Germans appeared once again stringent, spreading news about the existence of hidden paths of money laundering by wealthy Russians on the island. True, however, that the Russians' love for the island has grown, as the number of Russian people residing for long periods or permanently in Cyprus, has been multiplied greatly in recent years. By studying, by working in Russian companies or even by acquiring citizenship of Cyprus, they live and recreate in excessive luxury, often in the company of wealthy Cypriots benefiting from this Russian weakness for the good life and wellbeing. In theory an odd lifestyle for residents of a country on the verge of bankruptcy. Approximately 26,000,000,000 Euros are found in Russian accounts in Cypriot banks, which the Cypriot government claims not to violate international norms, since they are all made properly. But it is a factor that makes Europeans feel very uncomfortable, as it has created question marks over who actually controls the Cypriot economy. The Europeans keenly require statements for effective transparency, certainly as Cyprus asks the EMU for twelve billion euros to rescue its crumbling banks.