Police on Tuesday confirmed that a written request had been submitted to the UN bi-communal technical committee on crime and criminal matters for the handing over of two men wanted for the murder of British national George Low.
“The Cyprus police sent a letter to the committee requesting the Turkish occupation regime hand over the two wanted men,” police spokeswoman Nicoletta Tyrimou told the Cyprus Mail.
The Cyprus Mail reported Monday that a request concerning Mehmet Akpinar, 22, and Ahmed Salih, 43, who were captured in Kyrenia on Friday by Turkish Cypriot police, had been made.
Hakki Celal Onen, the Turkish Cypriot co-chairman of the technical committee then said no such request had been made.
Onen was on Tuesday reported as saying the request would be considered only after the suspects were tried in a Turkish Cypriot military court for trespassing into a military area, charges stemming from the two men allegedly crossing north at least twice through areas other than official crossing points.
The two men had a three-day remand order issued against them on Saturday for trespass and were due in court on Tuesday. It is not clear if they did so and whether or not they are still in custody.
Onen was also quoted by Turkish Cypriot website Star Kibris as saying another possibility would be to try the two men in the north, but the suspects being tried in an unrecognised court with evidence and statements supplied by the Republic’s police appears extremely unlikely.
Low from Dartford in Kent and his friend Ben Joseph Robert Barker were walking along Grigori Afxentiou Street at around 3.20am on Sunday, August 14 when they were attacked by two men, armed with knives, who then fled in different directions.
Low suffered a fatal blow to his neck, which severed his carotid artery. Barker was stabbed four times in the back, but survived.
Police issued the arrest warrants against Akpinar and Salih based on a statement given by a third suspect, Koulla Anastasiou, 48, who said she lived with Akpinar in her Kamares home in Larnaca and had aided his escape to the north.