Cyprus banks to open 12-6 Thursday

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People use ATMs outside a closed branch of the Bank of Cyprus in capital Nicosia, Cyprus, Wednesday, March 27, 2013. Cypriot authorities are preparing limits on how much money depositors can take out of their accounts a day before banks are set to reopen. (AP Photo/Petros Giannakouris)

NICOSIA, Cyprus (AP) — Banks in Cyprus are to open at noon for six hours on Thursday, a finance ministry official said.

The official said Wednesday that the banks would operate noon to 6pm (10:00 GMT to 16:00 GMT). Capital controls to prevent people draining their deposits are expected to be announced later Wednesday night.

The official spoke on condition of anonymity because the announcement had not been made officially.

Banks have been shut across the country since March 16 to prevent a run on deposits while politicians worked out a new plan to secure an international bailout.