Cyprus Mail

Attorney-general orders probe into claims of migrant exploitation

President Anastasiades visiting Pournara last week (Christos Theodorides)

Τhe interior ministry said on Thursday it would not be commenting at this stage on the attorney-general’s decision to launch an investigation into allegations of migrant exploitation, with high level police officers allegedly involved.

Attorney-general Giorgos Savvides called for the police investigation following claims by child protection commissioner Despo Michaelidou that Interior Minister Nicos Nouris was aware that a migrant exploitation ring was in place. The minister issued a categorical denial three days ago.

The allegations followed another bust up between the two over conditions for unaccompanied minors at the Pournara emergency migrant reception centre. Among a host of other complaints, the commissioner said minors were only given a piece of bread and water in the morning.

It was subsequently established that residents at Pournara did not receive a hot drink in the morning, a fact that President Anastasiades himself referred to as a ‘serious omission’ following his visit to the camp on Monday.

Interior Ministry press spokesperson Loizos Michael said there will be no comment from the ministry at the present time, pending an investigation of allegations.

“The Interior ministry has no comment presently. It is an issue for Mrs Michaelidou to substantiate her claims and competent authorities to investigate,” he told the Cyprus Mail.


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