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Anti motorcycle decree watered down but bikers threaten action

The police said on Tuesday it will modify a decree currently in force banning certain types of motorcycles from the roads during the holiday season, relaxing the previous restrictions.

The decision came after a lengthy meeting between the police chief and representatives of the Cyprus Motorcycle Federation (CMF) and owners of motorcycle rental businesses.

The revised decree eases the restrictions in force since August 13 and valid until August 30 – but the CMF came out of the meeting unsatisfied, saying the regulations still discriminate among drivers and fail to address the problem of noise nuisance on the roads.

Speaking to the media later, CMF representative Athos Efstathiou said they still disagree with the revised decree as it continues to impose double standards.

“Sadly the police don’t realise the problem of deprivation of liberty and discrimination…” he said.

“Separating users of the road grid into good and bad drivers, according to the vehicle and its type, is a major mistake that can only cause problems.”

Efstathiou said bikers would be consulting their lawyers on the possibility of challenging the decree in the courts, on the grounds of discrimination.

He argued that because current laws contain loopholes, and the police are unable to properly enforce measures to combat noise nuisance, authorities are trying to paper over the problem with sweeping decrees.

A representative for the association of rental motorcycles said they were exempt on the grounds that the restrictions would have decimated their business, already hit hard by the slump in tourist rentals, owing to the coronavirus situation.

Under the amended decree, the restrictions on the movement on motorcycles and quadbikes over 125cc now apply only on August 22, 23, 29 and 30, for the same roads designated in the initial decree.

The time slot for the restrictions has also been reduced, and made uniform across the cities – from 1am to 4am on the designated days.

Now also exempt from the restrictions are rental motorcycles; previously food delivery bikes had been exempt, and they continue to be.

The initial decree had banned the movement in Nicosia for 125cc motorbikes on August 16, 23 and 30 between midnight and 5am from Griva Digeni Avenue from the junction with Archangelos Avenue and Ayios Prokopios street up to junction with Themistoklis Dervis street and on Prodromou Avenue, from its junction with the Red Cross up to its junction with Grivas Digenis Avenue.

In Limassol, the initial ban concerned the coastal road that includes the Spyrou Araouzou, October 28th, Promachonas Eleftherias, Georgiou A and Amathountos streets, on August 14, 15, 16, 21, 22, 23, 28, 29 and 30 between 7pm and 4am.

For Paphos, the ban initially related to Poseidonos Avenue between 8pm and 4am on August 14, 15, 16, 21, 22, 23, 28, 29 and 30.

For the Famagusta district, the decree originally banned movement between 8pm and 4am from Protaras road – the road where the hotels are located – and from the Nissi and Archbishop Makarios Avenue in Ayia Napa.



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