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Cyprus Mail: Press Review in English, 99-02-13

Cyprus Mail: Press Review in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Cyprus Mail at <>

Saturday, February 13, 1999

Exclusives all round

"EXCLUSIVES" on alleged British spying, money laundering, "scams" at the Larnaca oil refinery and pedestrianisation in Nicosia dominated the front pages yesterday.

Apogevmatini reported that the British bases at Dhekelia and Akrotiri were harbouring British spies who were busily monitoring National Guard activities. The paper said it had secured secret information about the agents' modus operandi and targets. The paper said a number of cars registered under British Forces Cyprus were routinely used by the "spies" on their fact-finding missions. The agents routinely monitored the phone- calls of top government officials and politicians, the paper claimed.

"Super-sensitive" photographic equipment was being used to take pictures of National Guard positions and the vehicles used by the agents were equipped with a vast panoply of the latest in monitoring equipment, the paper added.

British spies had twice recently been caught in the act by government "security forces", Apogevmatini stated.

On the first occasion two "suspect" British bases vans were located hidden behind bushes in the Moni-Zygi area late one night. The occupants told the government officers they had "lost their way," the paper said.

Next, police investigating a traffic accident in which a bases vehicle had its headlights smashed found a miniature camera had been concealed within the lights, the paper claimed.

Alithia said it had uncovered the money laundering operations of an international drug trafficking ring. The Dutch-based drug ring - three members of which had recently been convicted in Holland - had used a Nicosia-based offshore company to launder their ill-gotten gains, the paper reported.

Three Dutch police officers had visited the island recently to investigate the case in conjunction with local police, the paper stated.

New daily Politis, in its first edition yesterday, reported that oil companies were syphoning off crude from the Larnaca distillery and selling it to tankers operating in the East Mediterranean. This illegal activity - which forces the Electricity Authority to buy more fuel from abroad at high cost - has been going on for years, the paper reported. The cost to the taxpayer was about 20 million annually, Politis added.

Under a front-page banner headline, Machi reported that Nicosia's main shopping street, Makarios Avenue, was to be pedestrianised, just like Ledra and Onasagorou streets in the old city.

The paper quoted Nicosia Mayor Lellos Demetriades as saying the pedestrianisation would take place in a few years time, with Nikis Avenue being widened to take traffic going to and coming from Limassol and Larnaca.

© Copyright Cyprus Mail 1999

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