Cyprus Church Offers Aid to Save Nation from Ruin

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The Orthodox Church in Cyprus said it's prepared to help save the tiny island nation from a fiscal crisis.

Archbishop Chrysostomos II said he will make the church's assets available to the government for its disposal.

His announcement came after a meeting with the Cypriot president.

The archbishop told reporters he is willing to mortgage the church's considerable holdings in property, banking, and a brewery -- and then invest it in government bonds.

Cyprus needs 15.8 billion euros to bail out its banks and shore up government finances.

Lawmakers rejected a controversial plan Wednesday to tax bank accounts after a public outcry.

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