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Akrotiri (Europe)

Introduction ::Akrotiri

Background:

By terms of the 1960 Treaty of Establishment that created the independent Republic of Cyprus, the UK retained full sovereignty and jurisdiction over two areas of almost 254 square kilometers - Akrotiri and Dhekelia. The southernmost and smallest of these is the Akrotiri Sovereign Base Area, which is also referred to as the Western Sovereign Base Area.

Geography ::Akrotiri

Location:

Eastern Mediterranean, peninsula on the southwest coast of Cyprus

Geographic coordinates:
34 37 N, 32 58 E

Map references:

Europe

Area:

total: 123 sq km country comparison to the world: 223 note: includes a salt lake and wetlands

Area - comparative:

about 0.7 times the size of Washington, DC

Land boundaries:

total: 47.4 km

border countries: Cyprus 47.4 km

Coastline:

56.3 km

Climate:

temperate; Mediterranean with hot, dry summers and cool winters

Environment - current issues:

hunting around the salt lake; note - breeding place for loggerhead and green turtles; only remaining colony of griffon vultures is on the base

Geography - note:

British extraterritorial rights also extended to several small
off-post sites scattered across Cyprus; of the Sovereign Base Area
(SBA) land, 60% is privately owned and farmed, 20% is owned by the
Ministry of Defense, and 20% is SBA Crown land

People ::Akrotiri

Population:

approximately 15,700 live on the Sovereign Base Areas of Akrotiri and Dhekelia including 7,700 Cypriots, 3,600 Service and UK-based contract personnel, and 4,400 dependents country comparison to the world: 219

Languages:

English, Greek

Government ::Akrotiri

Country name:

conventional long form: none

conventional short form: Akrotiri

Dependency status:

a special form of UK overseas territory; administered by an administrator who is also the Commander, British Forces Cyprus

Capital:

name: Episkopi Cantonment (base administrative center for Akrotiri and Dhekelia)

geographic coordinates: 34 40 N, 32 51 E

time difference: UTC+2 (7 hours ahead of Washington, DC during Standard Time)

daylight saving time: +1hr, begins last Sunday in March; ends last Sunday in October

Constitution:

Sovereign Base Areas of Akrotiri and Dhekelia Order in Council 1960, effective 16 August 1960, functions as a basic legal document

Legal system:

the Sovereign Base Area Administration has its own court system to deal with civil and criminal matters; laws applicable to the Cypriot population are, as far as possible, the same as the laws of the Republic of Cyprus

Executive branch:

chief of state: Queen ELIZABETH II (since 6 February 1952)

head of government: Administrator Major General Jamie GORDON (since October 2008); note - reports to the British Ministry of Defense

elections: none; the monarchy is hereditary; the administrator appointed by the monarch

Diplomatic representation in the US:

none (overseas territory of the UK)

Diplomatic representation from the US:

none (overseas territory of the UK)

Flag description:

the flag of the UK is used

National anthem:

note: as a United Kingdom area of special sovereignty, "God Save the Queen" is official (see United Kingdom)

Economy ::Akrotiri

Economy - overview:

Economic activity is limited to providing services to the military and their families located in Akrotiri. All food and manufactured goods must be imported.

Exchange rates:

euros (EUR) per US dollar - 0.7715 (2010), 0.7338 (2009), 0.6827 (2008)

note: on 1 January 2008 Akrotiri and Dhekelia adopted the euro along with the rest of Cyprus

Communications ::Akrotiri

Broadcast media:

British Forces Broadcast Service (BFBS) provides multi-channel satellite TV service as well as BFBS radio broadcasts to the Akrotiri Sovereign Base (2009)

Military ::Akrotiri

Military - note:

Akrotiri has a full RAF base, Headquarters for British Forces
Cyprus, and Episkopi Support Unit

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