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Homophobic, racist motives behind attacks need to be looked into

Homophobic, racist motives behind attacks need to be looked into

HOMOPHOBIC and racist motives behind two recent attacks in Limassol need to be investigated, immigrant support group KISA said yesterday.

The first incident involved an attack on a homosexual European couple by around ten Cypriot men.

“During the assault the attackers beat the couple, while shouting homosexual insults,” according to a statement released by KISA.

The couple reported the incident to the local police station on the same day. Charges were brought against three persons for assault and causing bodily harm.

KISA claims that no investigation was carried out against possible racist and homophobic motives of the crime.

When the couple insisted that all perpetrators be prosecuted “the police advised them not to insist on the prosecution of all those who participated in the attack and to testify only against the three perpetrators charged,” the statement said.

The second case concerns an attack against an EU family by around 20 to 30 Cypriot men and youths.

During the attack, which took place outside the family’s home, three family members were beaten.

The attackers shouted “xenophobic insults and racist threats,” KISA said.

Local police officers took relevant testimonies when visiting the scene. They then took the injured people to the Limassol general hospital.

“The police called two suspects to the local police station for questioning and charged them for causing unrest and disorder. The same charges were also brought against the victims because the attackers claimed they had been attacked by the family dog.

“As in the first case, the police do not seem to even consider the possible racially motives behind the crime,” the statement added.

KISA points out that the non-investigation of racist, homophobic, sexist and xenophobic motives is a common police practice.

The statement also asked for police officers to be trained in the assessment, recording and investigation of racist, homophobic, sexist and xenophobic motivations in crime.

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