Orthodox Church in Cyprus offers assets to aid crisis

The head of Cyprus's influential Orthodox Church says he will put the church's assets at the country's disposal to help pull it out of a financial crisis, after politicians rejected a plan to seize up to 10 percent of people's bank deposits to secure an international bailout.

Cypriot Archbishop Chrysostomos II. Credit: REUTERS/Tony Gentile

Speaking after meeting president Nicos Anastasiades today, Archbishop Chrysostomos II said the church was willing to mortgage its assets to invest in government bonds.

The church has considerable wealth, including property, stakes in a bank and a brewery. Yesterday's rejection of the deposit tax has left the future of the country's international bailout in question.

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UK customers escape bank levy

Around 15,000 savers in the UK arm of stricken Cypriot bank Laiki will see their deposits protected under British rules and will escape the Cyprus banking levy.