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Dhali/Dali is a village located in the Nicosia district, twenty kilometers south of the capital city of Nicosia and three kilometers southwest of Potamia/Dereli.. It is believed that the village was named after the ancient city of Idalion. Unlike other Turkish or mixed settlements, Turkish Cypriots never attempted to invent an alternative name for this village. It was always and still is called Dali.

Historical Population:

Although many travelers’ and contemporaneous accounts indicate that Dali was a mixed village throughout the Ottoman period, the Ottoman census of 1831 shows Christians (Greek Cypriots) as the sole inhabitants of the village. One indication that it was mixed during this period is that the village’s mosque dates to the early nineteenth century. The British census of 1891 puts the percentage of the Muslims living in the village at 15%. However, by the 1960 census the Turkish Cypriot share of the population had gradually declined to 8%.


The first conflict-related displacement took place in February 1964 when most of the Turkish Cypriot inhabitants of Dali were displaced during the intercommunal disturbances. Many moved to the Louroujina/Akıncılar(063) enclave. However, some chose to stay in the village until 1974, when many of them joined their co-villagers north of the Green Line. Richard Patrick recorded 36 Turkish Cypriots still living in Dali in 1971. It is reported that a handful of mainly elderly Turkish Cypriots stayed behind after the 1974 war. The number of those who were displaced was approximately 200 (206 in 1960).

Current Inhabitants:

Currently the village is mainly inhabited by its original Greek Cypriot villagers and displaced Greek Cypriots from the north. Since 1974, Dali has accommodated displaced Greek Cypriots, mainly those who fled from their homes in the Nicosia and Famagusta districts. Most of the empty Turkish houses were allocated to these displaced persons. In 1976 the Government also authorized the acquisition of land in the village for the refugee “self-housing scheme.” The last census of 2001 puts the total population of the village at 5,834. Almost 1,000 of the inhabitants are believed to be displaced persons from the northern part of the divide.


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