Britain Sends 1 Million Cash To Cyprus Troops
Britain said on Tuesday it had sent one million euros ($1.30 million) in cash to Cyprus aboard a military plane for its troops on the island in case cash machines and debit cards stop working.
"An RAF flight left for Cyprus this afternoon with €1M on board as a contingency measure to provide military personnel and their families with emergency loans in the event that cash machines and debit cards stop working completely," the Ministry of Defence said in a statement.
Banks in Cyprus have been closed since before the weekend and will not reopen until Thursday in order to prevent a run on the banks as the government discusses taxing all savers in order to secure an EU bailout.
The Cypriot parliament went ahead with a session to vote on the levy and the bailout on Tuesday, despite the governing DISY party calling for a one-day delay while a solution that would prevent "the big dangers our country is facing" was sought.
British soldiers stationed on the island and their families would be able to borrow from the one million euros flown out of Brize Norton if cash machines and debit cards in Cyprus stop working completely, the Ministry of Defence said.
"The MoD is proactively approaching personnel to ask if they want their March, and future months' salaries paid into UK bank accounts, rather than Cypriot accounts," it said in a statement.
"We're determined to do everything we can to minimise the impact of the Cyprus banking crisis on our people."