Grivas 1955

The EOKA Hideouts were a system which consisted of three lairs, storage rooms, a cooking room, observatories and others which were situated on the ridge which overhangs the village of Kourdali. General Georgios Grivas - Dighenis set his headquarters here since the 23/11/1955. Along with him were the command – lieutenant of EOKA Gregoris Auxentiou and 18 more guerrilla fighters.


Spilia 1955


Unfortunately, the Hideouts were betrayed and on the 11/12/1955 they were surrounded by an army of British Soldiers who aimed to arrest the chief and the rest of the guerrilla fighters. If they had been successful, the EOKA fight would have been bitterly and prematurely terminated.

Before the first daylight, the villages of Spilia and Kourdali were ‘under house arrest’ while the main body of the 700 hundred soldiers headed towards the Hideouts. The residents were gathered at the football field of Spilia. Two EOKA members, Michalakis Georgiades and Andreas Parides, who were on foot and leading a dentist to climb to the Hideouts to treat Dighenis, were arrested. The Sector-head of the area Renos Kyriakides, who had spent the night at the residence of the fighter Kyriacos Alexandrou along with the dentist, tried to escape but he was shot, wounded and got arrested. Therefore, nobody managed to pass the message of the English presence in the village.

It was a cold and foggy night. For this reason, the British were only spotted when they were just a few metres away from the guard of the eastern observatory and this caused a small skirmish. Dighenis gave instructions for the Hideouts to be immediately abandoned without the guerrilla fighters being spotted. This was achieved with complete success because the British had left the western ridge uncovered.


Afxentiou, the most famous hero of EOKA


The command – lieutenant of EOKA Gregoris Auxentiou remained as a rear guard and penetrated in between two British teams who were climbing up from the northern mountain slope. He shot against both teams and then resorted to the village of Agia Eirini of Kannavia. Inside the fog, the British shot each other and fifteen soldiers (as they admitted) were killed.


Movements of the opponents in the battle


Thereafter, the British discovered and blew up the Hideouts, but their primary target, which was to arrest the chief and the other guerrilla fighters, failed. EOKA Hideouts were never built afterwards. Only single lairs were built.


Andreas Chrysanthou 2004

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