Cyprus Mail

Suspected people smuggler remanded, refugees taken to Kokkinotrimithia (Updated)

File photo of refugees landing at Kato Pyrgos


A 49-year-old man who is believed to be the person who brought 61 Syrians to Cyprus in an unsafe and overloaded boat on Wednesday evening was remanded for eight days on Thursday.

The man jumped from the boat into the sea when police approached the vessel which was floating three nautical miles from Kato Pyrgos and was arrested.

Port authority radars picked up the vessel with 53 men,  seven boys and one woman, at 9.40pm on Wednesday. They were examined by doctors and taken to Polis Chrysochous police station where they were identified.

The majority of the men on board were under the age of 40. The young woman reportedly said her husband had come with another boat last year and was waiting for her.

The Syrians are suspected of having come from Turkey near the port of Mersin, police said in an announcement. They reportedly paid $2,000 each for the trip.

The 61 Syrians were taken to the migrant reception centre in Kokkinotrimithia on Thursday morning.

Meanwhile, community leader of Kato Pyrgos Nicos Cleanthous has said he has been informed that in the next few days more vessels with Syrian refugees will arrive in Cyprus.


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