Cyprus Mail

Remnants from north oil spill ‘being dealt with swiftly’

Clean up crews are operating round the clock


OIL FROM the spill in the north, which had drifted south, is dispersing and the situation is under control with crews at the ready to deal with any clumps of drifting residue, authorities said yesterday.

“Day by day the amount of oil in the sea is decreasing thanks to the clean-up crews who have been working extremely hard,” coastal inspector Giorgos Economou said.

Members from the ParalimniMunicipality, district offices, forestry department and volunteers from civil defence and the scouts have been involved in the clean-up process.

“The message is clear and that is that we have the situation under control and there is absolutely nothing to worry about,” he said.

Economou revealed that only small amounts of oil had made it to the beaches and they were quickly removed by the crews.

“Our people are ready to deal with any circumstances that may arise and we patrol the shores from the first light until sundown,” he added.

Authorities had been put on alert on Friday after the oil-spill in the sea off the coast of the Karpas in the north reached government-controlled waters.

According to reports in Turkish Cypriot Kibris on Sunday, ‘minister of tourism, environment and culture’ Mehmet Harmanci said, that the small amounts of oil residue which were spotted off the Palm Beach coast of Famagusta may be oil waste from ships which pass from the area.  He added that tight measures had been taken in order to prevent the oil spill from spreading.

The paper also reported that members of the public spotted oil and tar on the beach.

“Like a nightmare!” was the title of Turkish Cypriot daily Havadis’ front page on Sunday. It reported that the inhabitants of Gastria village had been living a nightmare for years now. Apart from the latest destruction caused by the oil spill, they have to breathe the poisonous gases coming out from the chimneys of power station AKSA, , which has been fined for the spill as the oil had been destined for the plant when it occurred.

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