The interior ministry has registered 240 individuals at the Ayios Nikolaos apartment complex in Chlorakas, of which two were found to in Cyprus illegally, a migration department official said on Thursday.

According to the spokesman for the department Petros Zeniou, 359 inspections were carried out since August 22 to date.

In total, 238 were found to be legal in Cyprus as asylum seekers or with a subsidiary protection status. Efforts to deport the two illegal residents are underway.

Zeniou said inspections in Chlorakas continue on a daily basis, so authorities can find out if any are illegally residing in the area.

The government last month decided migrants living in apartment complex in Chlorakas should be kicked out and relocated to Kofinou.

This year, 1,520 foreign nationals living illegally in Cyprus were arrested and 1,381 were forced to return.

There were 5,004 individuals who voluntarily returned without arrest.

Where are arrivals are concerned, by August 31, there were 6,717 individuals compared to 11,246 last year.

From the north, there were 10,874 arrivals until the end of August, which mark a 50 per cent decrease compared to last year which were 5,511.

According to Zenios, police are targeting five pillars, one of which is to identify and arrest the traffickers with a view to bringing them to justice. In the year 2023 to date, 71 cases of smuggling of irregular migrants have been investigated and 96 traffickers of irregular migrants were arrested in 2023.

In 2022, there were 85 cases inspected of which 135 smugglers were arrested.

The second pillar concerns illegal labour, which has been described by Zenios as one of the most important attractions for migrants. He added last year, 100 cases were investigated, of which 101 individuals were found to illegally hire 166 migrants.

This year, the number has increased to 258 employers illegally hiring 257 employees hiring 432 foreign nationals.

Zenios highlighted the aim of the specific interior ministry service is to monitor the green line.