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Cyprus

Coronavirus: SafePass dodger sought by police for assaulting business owner (updated)

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Members of the hospitality venues association (Pasyka) on Tuesday reiterated their position that SafePass checks should be carried out by relevant officials, after a Limassol-based restaurant owner was assaulted with a knife by a customer who refused to show him his SafePass.

“Unfortunately, for the umpteenth time, we are proved right,” Pasyka said.

Their announcement came as police said they are looking for a man who assaulted a Limassol business owner with a knife because he asked him for a SafePass.

The incident was reported to police around 10pm on Friday by a fast food owner in Yermasoyia who said a foreign national visited his restaurant to place a take-away order and refused to present a SafePass after he sat in the outdoor seating area.

According to the restaurant owner’s statement, there was a confrontation when he asked the man to leave. The unknown man then took out a knife and injured him on his left hand before fleeing the scene.

Police arrived and started investigations by collecting witness statements and evidence from the restaurant.

The injured man was taken to a private hospital where he was diagnosed with a deep bruise on his left forearm and received first aid.

So far, authorities only have a description of the suspect, a police spokesman told the Cyprus Mail.

Pasyka, which has repeatedly expressed its opposition to the measure obliging business owners to check staff and customers for a SafePass, called on the competent minister to consider what would have happened if the incident had taken a more serious turn.

“Our position remains clearly unchanged, that this role belongs to the persons authorised by the state,” they added.

The SafePass is a document required to visit outdoor and indoor venues where there are 20 people or more. It entails proof of vaccination against coronavirus with at least one vaccine dose three weeks prior, a negative coronavirus test no older than 72 hours, or proof the person has contracted and recovered from Covid within the last six months.

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