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Cyprus News Agency: News in English (PM), 98-08-13

Cyprus News Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Cyprus News Agency at <>


  • [01] UNHCR - illegal migrants - asylum claims
  • [02] Turks - sentence

  • 1705:CYPPRESS:01

    [01] UNHCR - illegal migrants - asylum claims

    Nicosia, Aug 13 (CNA) -- A United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) official from Geneva headquarters is currently in Limassol, to examine the asylum claims of 113 illegal migrants, rescued off Cyprus on June 29 1998.

    According to a UNHCR statement released today, between July 14-24 the Commission interviewed 58 individuals who submitted applications for asylum and concluded that two of them merited the grant of refugee status.

    All those rejected have since submitted appeals, which are currently being reviewed, the statement adds.

    UNHCR is also examining the claims for asylum of another 55 of the boat- people, who had initially not shown interest in requesting asylum in Cyprus.

    The government of Cyprus "has given assurances to UNHCR that these people will not be returned until a final decision has been taken on their cases", the statement points out, adding that:

    "UNHCR is grateful to the government of Cyprus and local communities in Limassol for providing accommodation and food to all asylum-seekers awaiting decisions on their claims."

    According to UNHCR, as Cyprus has yet to adopt a national refugee legislation and administrative procedures to deal with asylum-seekers, the Commission "remains responsible for determining the refugee status" on the island.

    The Arab and African illegal migrants have been staying under police guard at "Pefkos" hotel in Limassol, since their rescue after spending days stranded and half-starved at sea.

    The Syrian-flagged boat was going to Libya, when it developed engine problems off Cyprus' coast.

    CNA GG/MCH/1998

    [02] Turks - sentence

    Larnaca, Aug 13 (CNA) -- Two Turkish nationals, who illegally entered Cyprus through the Turkish-occupied Kyrenia port and crossed into the government-controlled areas of the Republic, were today sentenced to one month imprisonment.

    Haci Barut and Enver Salicu, 29, from Ankara, were also found guilty of illegal possession of large quantities of duty-free items.

    Barut was also accused of driving a non-registered car without circulation licence and insurance.

    Judge Marios Georgiou stressed the seriousness of the crime, pointing out that the act of illegal entry through the Turkish-occupied Kyrenia port undermines the sovereignty of the Republic of Cyprus.

    Turkish troops invaded Cyprus in 1974, occupying 37 per cent of the Republic's territory. Despite repeated UN resolutions demanding their withdrawal, Turkish troops continue to be stationed in the northern part of the island.

    CNA MAN/MCH/GG/1998
    Cyprus News Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article
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