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Cyprus Mail: News Articles in English, 98-01-04

Cyprus Mail: News Articles in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Cyprus Mail at <>

Sunday, January 4, 1998


  • [01] Pre-poll mud-slinging continues
  • [02] UN to quiz Denktash on contacts
  • [03] Patricide suspect remanded again
  • [04] Roads claim first victims of 1998
  • [05] Marine police on full alert
  • [06] Two remanded in drugs cases
  • [07] Water bonus ends: more cuts in the pipeline
  • [08] Thief off like the clappers
  • [09] Ethnikos held by Apollonas

  • [01] Pre-poll mud-slinging continues

    By Aline Davidian

    PRESIDENT Clerides and Disy leader Nicos Anastassiades hit back yesterday at left-wing Akel for criticising recent statements made by the head of the Intelligence Services (Kyp).

    Akel lambasted Anastassiades for attempting to justify Kyp chief Nicos Ioannou's public assurance to Clerides that he would be re-elected in next month's presidential election. He made the comment during a visit by the president to Kyp headquarters.

    Ioannou on Friday announced his decision to leave his post until after the elections in order to avoid "misunderstandings" after a barrage of criticism from the entire opposition spectrum.

    Clerides dismissed such criticism yesterday as "pre-election opportunism", and drew attention to a letter sent by Ioannou to Kyp members forbidding pre-election activities. Clerides said it would have been better if Ioannou had made the statements while off duty, but in any case "such subtlety" had never been displayed by his critics.

    Anastassiades, in response to Akel's criticism of Disy over the matter, said yesterday Akel members had often visited Kyp offices in the past in attempts to influence promotions, - and made particular reference to Limassol Akel member Andreas Kokkinos.

    Anastassiades drew attention to a letter written by then Attorney-general Michalakis Triantafyllides to the interior minister at the time, in an attempt to stay 70 criminal cases during the run-up to presidential elections. This had been considered a "pre-election" move and had been stopped, said Anastassiades.

    He also said "it was common knowledge" that pro-George Iacovou policemen organised and accompanied him on visits to voters' homes.

    Akel general secretary Dimitris Christofias said yesterday "the Disy leader should stop trying to justify the unjustifiable" and should condemn Ioannou's stance.

    Christofias said Anastassiades was making references to "things which had been discussed several times" in the House of Representatives, and he denied that Akel members had ever had dealings with "police authorities".

    Meanwhile Diko leader Spyros Kyprianou has called a meeting of all political party leaders tomorrow in the wake of Ioannou's alleged support for Clerides.

    Anastassiades has said although Disy representatives would attend the meeting, he himself saw "no reason to be present".

    United Democrats leader George Vassiliou will also be absent, drawing fire from Kyprianou who said yesterday this meant Vassiliou had "realised he would not be playing any role in the presidential elections".

    Right-wing Diko has forged an alliance with Akel to back former Foreign Minister Iacovou after abandoning the alliance with Disy which got Clerides elected in 1993.

    Kyprianou said yesterday he was confident Iacovou would be elected president in the first round of voting on February 8 since "his supporters are constantly growing". He added that all things seemed to indicate a second round would not be necessary.

    Anastassiades said yesterday Disy would try to co-operate with all political parties not supporting Iacovou during the second round. He said contact with Diko members would continue, although this would not include members of the Diko leadership who had ruled out a new Diko-Disy alliance.

    [02] UN to quiz Denktash on contacts

    By Jean Christou

    THE cancellation of all bi-communal contacts will be raised by the UN at a meeting this week with Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash.

    UN Permanent Representative Gustave Feissel told the Cyprus Mail yesterday there has been no change in Denktash's stance on such contacts.

    The Turkish Cypriot leader, annoyed at the European Union's decision to begin accession talks with Cyprus this year, cut all contacts between Greek and Turkish Cypriots as a show of strength.

    For the past two weeks all bi-communal contacts which involved students, unions, businessman, artists and other professions have come to a standstill.

    It is believed British High Commissioner David Madden will also meet Denktash, possibly tomorrow.

    "There have been no new developments yet," Feissel said yesterday. "But I expect to see Mr Denktash at the beginning of the week so we'll see what happens then."

    Feissel will also meet President Clerides this week, other UN sources said. They called both meetings routine, but said that the matter of the bi- communal activities would "certainly" be raised.

    "Unficyp attaches great importance to bi-communal activities," the sources said. "This has also recently received the support of the Security Council."

    Constantinos Lordos, who is involved in rapprochement efforts between Greek and Turkish Cypriot businessmen, said yesterday that they are trying to establish whether the ban will be temporary or extended.

    Lordos said the Turkish Cypriots have been cut off completely and not allowed to come to the government-controlled areas or to the Ledra Palace for meetings.

    He said they have contact by phone but "it's the personal contacts" that matter.

    "We are trying to evaluate the situation and come up with alternative solutions," he said.

    [03] Patricide suspect remanded again

    PATRICIDE suspect Athos Neocleous yesterday gave a cryptic message to the Larnaca court when he appeared for the renewal of his remand.

    Neocleous, 26, faces charges of stabbing his father Archimides, 53, to death and seriously wounding his mother Despo, 52, on Christmas Day at the family's Larnaca home.

    "I admit everything which was said is the truth. I want to show a different truth but I don't know how," Neocleous told the court yesterday.

    The night club employee believes his parents were murdered in England years ago and that the people he attacked were imposters.

    The court has already heard that at around 9.30pm on Christmas Day the suspect went to his parents' house and started an argument with his father for cutting short his music studies in the US.

    He had apparently been brought back to Cyprus by his parents after becoming addicted to drugs and suffering psychological problems, the court heard.

    During the alleged row with his father preceding the attack, Neocleous pulled a knife and stab his father and then his mother.

    The attack was witnessed by a friend of the family, senior police officer Antonakis Theoharou. He said he tried to disarm the suspect but that Neocleous managed to flee the scene. He was found in Troodos the next morning.

    Neocleous' father died from a fatal blow to the chest while his mother suffered serious wounds to the stomach and liver.

    She is now said to be out of danger.

    Neocleous' remand order was renewed yesterday for six days.

    [04] Roads claim first victims of 1998

    A 19-year-old National Guardsmen died on the roads yesterday morning after a collision with a tractor. It was the first road fatality of 1998 in the government-controlled areas.

    Police said Christos Moyis from Livadhia in Larnaca was driving a double- cabin pick-up truck from Troulli to Kelia at 8.30am when he lost control of his vehicle.

    According to police the pick-up careered into oncoming traffic and collided with a tractor driven by Andreas Hadjiafxentiou, an animal breeder from Troulli.

    The tractor driver was not hurt.

    Turkish Cypriots also recorded their first fatality of the year with the death of an 18-year-old student in the early hours of Friday.

    According to Turkish Cypriot press reports Bora Erin, the son of Aytekin Erin, the 'Under-secretary to the Ministry of Communications and Works' was killed in an accident attributed to "speed and alcohol".

    Erin's car failed to negotiate a bend on the Nicosia-Kyrenia road and fell into a precipice. A friend of the driver, who was only slightly injured in the accident, walked away from the scene to raise the alarm but Erin died in a ambulance on the way to hospital.

    Two fatalities were recorded in the government-controlled areas over the Christmas holiday period.

    A 54-year-old woman was killed crossing the road in Liopetri on December 27, and on New Year's Eve a 35-year-old father of three was killed when the car he and a friend had taken hunting went over a cliff in the Akamas area.

    [05] Marine police on full alert

    By Aline Davidian

    THE PORT and Marine Police said yesterday marine patrols were at a maximum level and would counter any possible influx of Kurds fleeing from the Turkish mainland.

    News agency reports had said a ship carrying mainly Kurds had left Turkey for Italy or Greece.

    Cyprus Port and Marine Police deputy commander, Stelios Christodoulides, said that despite receiving reports from Greece on the situation, marine patrols had not been increased in number.

    He said this was because maximum precautionary measures were already being taken on a 24 hour basis.

    "We are always on patrol, tracing illegal immigrants," Christodoulides said. "We don't have to wait till something happens somewhere else in the world."

    Describing the current problem with Kurds as "nothing extraordinary", he said the Cyprus Port and Marine police received "information from Greece and other sources" about illegal immigrants sporadically.

    Marine police officers said yesterday illegal Kurdish immigrants preferred to leave Turkey via its extended Aegean coast or, if heading southwards, through the Turkish-occupied areas of Cyprus. They tended not to go through Syria, said the officers, thus usually avoiding the government-controlled coastline of the island.

    The officers also said Cyprus marine patrols continued for "approximately 85 to 90 percent of each day, accounting for almost 20 out of 24 hours".

    Reports from Ankara quoted the Turkish Foreign Ministry as saying it was ready to accept the return of hundreds of Kurds who recently attempted to enter Italy from Turkey's coastal areas.

    Italian Foreign Minister Giorgio Napolitano said this week Italy would look favourably on the immigrants since there was "no doubt that persecution (of Kurds) in Iraq and certain regions of Turkey exists".

    The Turkish Foreign Ministry however has said awarding political asylum to people it classified as economic migrants would encourage others to attempt to make the same journey.

    [06] Two remanded in drugs cases

    A PAPHOS pub owner and Larnaca youth club manager were remanded yesterday in connection with separate drugs cases.

    In Paphos Costas Asprou, 33, was remanded for six days after police allegedly found 150 grammes of cannabis at his home.

    Panayiotis Christodoulou, 22, the manager of a youth club in Larnaca was remanded for four days on suspicion of selling and possession of 834 grammes of cannabis.

    Drug squad officers raided the 'Neotitos' youth club in Kamares on Friday night after a tip-off that Christodoulou was allegedly selling drugs to youths at £10 a time.

    Police said they found a large cloth bag behind the fridge in the club's kitchen which contained a green dust-like substance believed to be cannabis.

    Police said they also discovered the butts of three joints in the club's rubbish bins.

    Christodoulou allegedly told them it was sand and that he'd just found it. He was arrested and held overnight until his court appearance yesterday.

    In Paphos the 150 grammes allegedly found at the home of Costas Asprou was the result of a 24-hour investigation initiated after a national guardsman and his English fiancée were caught smoking a joint in a car at 2am on Friday.

    The national guardsman, who has since been released without charge, told police he had obtained the drugs from Angelos Kleovoulou, 26, a waiter from the Hollywood pub in Kato Paphos, who in turn allegedly told police he had been supplied through Asprou, his employer at the pub.

    After searching Asprou's home at around 4.30pm on Friday police said they found the 150 grammes of cannabis.

    Asprou's Australian wife was also arrested but released yesterday, as was Kleovoulou.

    [07] Water bonus ends: more cuts in the pipeline

    By Jean Christou

    NICOSIANS who have been enjoying a continuous water supply for almost two weeks should brace themselves for the resumption of restrictions by midweek.

    Charalambos Palantzis, Director-general of the Nicosia Water Board told the Cyprus Mail yesterday supplies around the capital had been left to run unlimited since Christmas Eve.

    "We didn't want to create a problem for people over the Christmas and New Year holiday period, when perhaps they would be coming and going and shopping all the time," Palantzis said. "We look on it as our Christmas present to consumers."

    But he said the three-day restrictions service would probably be resumed by Wednesday or Thursday as January 6 officially signals the end of the holiday period.

    Palantzis denied the Christmas bonus had anything to do with electioneering.

    He said the Board of the Directors of his organisation comprises members from each of Nicosia's five municipalities - "one member from each party so there's a balance," he added.

    Palantzis also warned that just because water supplies were left unrestricted for two weeks does not mean an improvement in the situation.

    "It is not encouraging," he said. "The water collected so far is very minimal but we are hoping that by February or March..."

    Palantzis said that despite the chronic water shortage the lack of cuts over the past two weeks has not put a huge dent in reserves.

    "It was not a considerable quantity, and we didn't want to trouble consumers," he said.

    [08] Thief off like the clappers

    POLICE said yesterday 400 sheep bells have been stolen from a house in the Paphos village of Stavrokonnos.

    Avghousta Choraiti reported that thieves had broken into her home and stolen the bells, which are worth about £3,000.

    [09] Ethnikos held by Apollonas

    By George Christou

    ETHNIKOS Achnas conceded a goal on their home ground for the first time this season as they were held by third-placed Apollonas to a 1-1 draw yesterday.

    The result left Ethnikos in fourth place, a point behind Apollonas and second-placed Omonia, who were playing league leaders Anorthosis last night.

    In Nicosia, Apoel put all their troubles behind them and scored their biggest victory of the season, trouncing a poor Salamina side 5-0.

    Apop returned to winning, after losing six games in a row. They beat Anagennisis in a bottom of the table clash 1-0, and moved out of the relegation zone, climbing to ninth place.

    Finally, bottom club, Ethnikos Ashias started the new year on a happy note, holding Ael in Limassol to a goalless draw. Ashia are now unbeaten in their last two games, having scored their first victory of the season two weeks ago.

    The encounter in Achna, as expected, was very tight, with both side's avoiding taking any risks. Both sides packed players behind the ball to deprive their opponents of space and this made for a very poor spectacle.

    Apollonas went ahead three minutes before the interval from the penalty spot, after Georgiou was tripped by Kastanas inside the area. Spoliaric cooly converted the spot-kick for his sixth goal of the season.

    The second half was livelier as Ethnikos was forced to go in search of the equaliser. This opened things up at the back for Apollonas, who did not give up the search for the second goal that would secure the three points.

    The second goal never came and five minutes before the final whistle, Ethnikos had equalised. When an indirect free-kick was awarded inside the Apollonas area for a foul on Ashiotis, the ball was blocked but came to Kastanas who shot home from the penalty spot.

    Apoel coach Andreas Mouskallis had relegated his top scorer Kozniku to the subs bench for yesterday's game, but this did not affect Apoel's performance who tore apart the weakened Salamina defence.

    The turning point came in the 21st minute when Salamina's central defender Psaras limped off injured. Within four minute Apoel were two up thanks to goals by Fasouliotis and Soteriou. Ioannou added a third in the 35th minute.

    Ten minutes after the interval Ioannou struck again, scoring the best goal of the afternoon with superb solo run. Soteriou completed the rout. The cup holders created enough chances for the scoreline to have reached double figures.

    Apop, playing under new coach, Nicos Argyroulis, for the first time, performed some heroics in Paphos to end their run of six consecutive defeats. They were down to 10 men after the sending off of Socratous for a second bookable offence in the 58th minute, and looked happy to play for a point.

    Sophocleous scored the winner in rare Apop attack in the dying seconds of the game.

    © Copyright Cyprus Mail 1998

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