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Cypriot President cuts own salary in bid to show his nation's solidarity as banks reopen

March 29 2013, 11:18

express.co.uk

Cypriot President Nicos Anastasiades has cut his own salary. Photo:express.co.ukCypriot President Nicos Anastasiades has cut his own salary. Photo:express.co.ukCyprus's President has cut his own salary by a quarter in a bid to get his people on side and show the solidarity of his nation.

In a bid to show his compassion for the ordinary Cypriot, who is currently feeling the effects of the country's severe debt crisis, President Nicos Anastasiades authorised his own pay cut.

The leader's cabinet ministers have also decided to slash their own wages by 20 percent.

Cypriots got their first chance to access their money today as banks across the country opened for the first time in two weeks.

Despite the brave faces, people have been prevented from withdrawing more than 300 euros from their accounts.

One 70-year-old pensioner, who had been waiting outside one bank for two hours said: "I had to come this early, I came from my village 20 kilometers away, what do they want me to do, keep coming and going?"

"They are stealing our money."

Cypriot banks have been shut for two weeks as the government tries to get hold of the financial crisis and piece together an emergency loan in order to prevent the financial sector from collapsing.

The agreement was reached earlier this week in which international lenders will give the country an £8.5billion bailout but will slap the country's two largest banks with a penalty on depositors with more than 100,000 euros in the bank.

Outside a Bank of Cyprus Branch, among the first in line was a 52-year-old Greek businessman who said he flew in from Greece to take "as much money out as he could" from his account to pay bills and employees. He said he would be hit by the tax on deposits over 100,000 euros. 

"This is chaos, we don't know what to expect once banks open," the businessman said who wouldn't give his name because he didn't want to discuss personal financial matters.

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