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In a village in northern Cyprus, a community struggling to save its ancient language has seen a glimmer of hope in intensified efforts to reunify the divided island. Kormakitis was once the hub of Cyprus' Maronite minority, descendants of Lebanese and Syrian Christians who spoke Sanna, a unique dialect of Arabic influenced by the Aramaic spoken by Jesus.Uprooted by the 1974 Turkish invasion of Cyprus, many Maronites assimilated into Greek Cypriot communities where they sought shelter.Able to visit and stay in the village despite living outside the Turkish-controlled part of the island, young Maronites have attended Sanna classes at a summer camp there every August since 2008 .Like many of the volunteers at the school, Foradari grew up in Kormakitis, the largest of the island's four Maronite villages and the last where Sanna was spoken.Of nearly 5,000 Maronites living across the island today, only around 1,000 speak Sanna.Some of them see the peace talks as the best hope in years for reviving their language.
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