Regarding the article “Turkish Cypriots warn of “measures” over Cyprus government refusing entry to those heading north”, the tourists were Israelis, Israelis can fly direct from Tel Aviv to Turkey. No need to fly to Larnaca and then cross in Nicosia. The only reasons are the cheap flights and the easy crossing in Nicosia.
I am an Israeli living in Cyprus, so I can feel free to comment on the subject without qualms. There are, at least, three flights a day from Tel Aviv to different cities in Turkey so Israelis wanting to visit Turkey can fly direct. From there they can fly to the occupied north and have their vacations there.
Why do they choose to fly to Cyprus?
The answer is the hassle any Israeli passport holder goes through when landing in Turkey. There were more than a few incidents. It wasn’t always so and Turkey was the preferred destination for holidays. Today, things have changed and still, Israelis want the cheap all-inclusive vacations. The crossing in Nicosia is easy and apparently with no hassle. I have heard that asking for a temporary entry can be done without stamping the passport.
I absolutely agree with the Larnaca airport authorities, these people should be turned around and sent back. They can still fly to Turkey if they so choose.
As an aside comment, I think that Israelis visiting short term or those living here should refrain from crossing to the north. This is my personal opinion.
Anna M. Cattoni, Paphos