Nicosia airport in Cyprus was filled with tourists fleeing the island on Friday (19 July) because of the tense situation there.
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Background: Nicosia airport in Cyprus was filled with tourists fleeing the island on Friday (19 July) because of the tense situation there.
Many escaped only hours before Turkish paratroops and seaborne forces made their dawn landings on Saturday. The Turkish government hopes its invading forces will overthrow the new Cyprus regime which deposed President Makarios last Monday (15 July).
Since Monday's coup, when Greek officers of the Cypriot National Guard shelled the Archbishop's palace, all countries have advised their tourists in Cyprus to evacuate the island. Many holidaymakers ignored the advice. There were reports of planes form Cyprus arriving half empty -- but the airports hurriedly filled of Friday after rumours of a Turkish invasion.
More than 1,500 tourists were flown out of Cyprus on Friday but about the same number are still stranded on the island.