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Police awaiting response on captured murder suspects

Police on Tuesday said they had still to receive an answer to a request submitted a week ago 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.

A request concerning Mehmet Akpinar, 22, and Ahmed Salih, 43, who were captured in Kyrenia on by Turkish Cypriot police, was made last week.

At first Hakki Celal Onen, the Turkish Cypriot co-chairman of the technical committee said no such request had been made but changed his tune last Tuesday when he was reported as saying the request would be considered only after the suspects were tried in a Turkish Cypriot military court.

They are being held until their trial and face charges not for the killing, but for trespassing into a military area as they allegedly crossed north at least twice through areas other than official crossing points.

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 injury 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.

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