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Cyprus

Public has role in fight against drugs says president

President Anastasiades cutting the ribbon at the official opening of the police offices in Paralimni

The proliferation of drugs has taken on large dimensions, President Nicos Anastasiades said on Monday, calling for public cooperation to help police fight the issue.

Speaking at the official inauguration of the new police building in Paralimni, Anastasiades said that “the security of the public, but also the administration of justice, is one of our concerns.”

Anastasiades highlighted the achievements of the police force, despite a surge in crime, noting that voluntary contributions from the public are integral to the success of the police force.

Referring to the neighbourhood watch, Anastasiades said that “in 2012, it had 4,000 people in three municipalities and communities, whereas today it has 105,000 in 317 municipalities and communities.”

The neighbourhood watch scheme contributes to rooting out serious crime quickly, Anasatasiades said.

Referring to cases of corruption within the police force, Anastasiades said that “we shouldn’t focus our attention on the few unacceptable samples, rather than on what the vast majority of policemen offer.”

Anastasiades highlighted such cases will be dealt with so that “we can have a police force worthy of the public’s trust.”

The public’s input is vital to effectively combat increasing drug use, he said.

“Rather than some people showing up at parliament or elsewhere and making unsubstantiated claims,” Anastasiades said, referring to the recent episode of false claims by a scientology-linked anti-drugs group, “it is preferable to inform the authorities so that the necessary measures can be taken.”

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