The slap of cards and the mutterings of the players are still familiar sounds in the coffee shops and villages in Cyprus.
GV Houses in Limassol
GV People in the market in Limassol
SVs People sitting having a drink outside cafe (2 shots)
GVs Flats and CU street name (3 shots)
SVs Lebanese families playing cards (2 shots)
GV Flats for rent (3 shots)
SV People sitting outside flats playing backgammon
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Background: The slap of cards and the mutterings of the players are still familiar sounds in the coffee shops and villages in Cyprus. But now one can also hear the rapid click of backgammon counters and the cries of dice throwers, sounds that have arrived with the recent influx of Lebanese refugees. The Lebanese who sought refuge in the island have been affluent, well able to pay for both steep hotel rates and big cars. The less affluent Lebanese have apartments, and one result is a dearth of this type of accommodation. Estate agents are spoiled, they can hardly the bothered responding to inquiries other than from prospective buyers. Before the latest Lebanese crisis, tourism earned nearly ten per cent of Cyprus's gross national product. The flow of Lebanese refugees has boosted this figure, but cypriot officials regard it as only temporary. Few of the Lebanese have settled, nor have they been particularly encouraged to by residential property. In other words the Cypriots have accorded them the same impartial treatment as any other foreigners interested in acquiring a holiday home on the island. Nevertheless the man in the street dislikes the personal effect the Lebanese are having on the island. Property values have become inflated in both the rented and for sale markets. For the average Cypriot buying a home is now of the question.