A 39-year-old Azeri suspected of planning to assassinate Israeli nationals residing on the island had come to Cyprus for a rest, according to his brother, who said claims of Iran being involved in the plot were false.
“Who says Iran is behind his trip to Cyprus? Where is the evidence?” the suspect’s brother was quoted as saying by daily Politis newspaper on Tuesday.
Politis said they spoke to the brother outside the Nicosia courtroom the previous day, where the suspect was further remanded until Thursday.
The man said he arrived from Moscow to support his brother.
Initial reports suggested the suspect was on the island to kill a particular Israeli businessman. Israeli government officials said however, that the planned assassination of Israeli businessmen in Cyprus was an Iranian plot aimed at striking Israel.
His brother suggested the inclusion of Iran was designed to serve Israel’s purposes.
He also claimed that the remand hearings were being held behind closed doors “because maybe it will transpire that the evidence against him is a joke.”
The suspect was arrested in Nicosia on September 27. In his possession, police said they found a pistol equipped with a suppressor.
The brother disputed that his brother was planning a crime, saying he “came to Cyprus for a rest.”
He said they both lived in Moscow and his brother had five children, one with a disability.
He did many jobs to make ends meet, including driving a taxi. His main job was the trade of fruit and vegetables from Turkey, according to his brother.
Politis said the brother has not yet been allowed to see the suspect, but he was also questioned by police on Saturday.