The Republic of Cyprus will cover the cost of identifying 2.500 missing bones

Intention of the Republic of Cyprus to disburse € 1,2 million for the identification of 2.500 small bones

DA0772A0 DD33 426D B26C 8973532565D8 Missing, Republic of Cyprus, BONE

The intention of the Republic of Cyprus to disburse € 1,2 million for the identification of 2.500 small bones, was announced by the Commissioner of the Presidency, Fotis Fotiou, after the end of the discussion in the Parliamentary Committee for Refugees-Trapped-Missing-Victims.

As Mr. Fotiou said, the process of identification for these bones, which mainly concern cases of Assassins, should proceed, even with the cost being covered by the Republic of Cyprus, in case it exceeds the possibilities of the Commission of Inquiry for the Missing. (CMP). "We have an obligation to these people, to do what is possible, regardless of whether in the end we manage to find one, two or three missing persons, through this process," he stressed.

According to the Presidential Commissioner, "about 750 cases of our missing, about 50% of the cases filed, remain unclear." As the most important obstacle in the work of the CMP, Fotis Fotiou highlighted the tough stance of Turkey, which still denies access to the Turkish army archives, which are the only ones that can safely indicate the locations of mass graves, as well as bone transport.

He referred to the case of Assia, with murders of women and children and the elderly, from where movements were made to Strongylos, Kontemenos, Kornokipos, Lapithos, Agastina and Agios Hilarion.

"The majority of the bones we are looking for at the moment are the result of travel," said the Commissioner, adding that the CMP should proceed with the excavation and exhumation in Dikomo, where information has been provided by the Turkish Cypriot side for the transport of bones to the area. .

The Commissioner described the problem of the identification of the sprayed bones, which number 50-60 boxes in the CMP laboratory, as "open wound", as he said. He said samples had been sent for testing to Spain, but said the results would not be encouraging.

Finally, he said that at the political and diplomatic level, initiatives are being taken to enlighten the issue of the missing, so that the international community, the United Nations and the EU to pressure Turkey to change its stance.

There are still 900 people left for identification

Leonidas Pantelidis, the Greek Cypriot Representative in the CMP, informed that during the past year 37 identifications were made, of which 29 concerned missing persons and 6 victims of the Turkish invasion.

According to Mr. Pantelidis, in the previous period there was a downward trend in the findings, but there are hopes that in the next period this picture will be reversed.

As he said, at the moment the CMP has bones at its disposal, from the examination of which it is expected that up to 100 more people can be identified, while there are still 900 people who are on the lists that the CMP has at its disposal.

Regarding the 2.500 small bones that have not yet been identified, he said that the proposal made by the Commissioner for the Presidency will be discussed, so that the process can proceed. As Leonidas Pantelidis explained, DNA testing needs to be done on each of the small pieces, as it is not easy to assemble them and determine which person they belong to.

Leonidas Pantelidis stated that the Commission is investigating the application of new technologies for bone detection, such as ultrasound radar, but also drones that have special cameras, in order to detect differences in the soil and vegetation, which are not visible to the human eye.

The Portuguese expert is expected from August 2021

The recruitment of the expert from Portugal remains pending, who is expected to guide the excavation to a landfill, where bones appear to have been transported.

The expert will be in Cyprus for four months, with a team of four people, to prepare a manual for handling this case by the CMP staff. His arrival was expected in August, but the preparation of his contract is delayed, due to the fact that the amount of his fee requires special approval.

"The executive has pledged to release € 1,2 million for the identification of bones"

The chairman of the competent Parliamentary Committee and MP of AKEL, Nikos Kettiros, said that it is the obligation of the state to disburse the € 1,2 million in order to proceed with the identification of the thousands of small bones.

Nikos Kettiros stated that "we have reached the point of giving relatives of the fallen a tooth or bones from one palm for funerals, while there are 2.500 bones that have not been identified, due to cost."

He then referred to the € 70 million in damages awarded by the European Court of Human Rights and to be reimbursed by Turkey to relatives of those trapped and missing.

As Nikos Kettiros said, the submission of legislation for the management of this amount is expected for 8 years. According to information received, the legislation is in the Ministry. Finance, but before it reaches the Parliament it must also pass a legal inspection. "We can not ask Turkey to pay the compensation when we need 8 years to set up a mechanism," he concluded.

DISY MP, George Karoullas, stated that despite the adversity and especially the unwavering refusal of Turkey to provide information on burial sites, work is being done in the direction of identifying bones, but with delays. He stressed that it is the obligation of the state to disburse the amount of € 1,2 million, since for the identification of a bone they need € 500. He also spoke about actions at the level of parliamentary diplomacy, about exerting pressure on Turkey, in order to open new areas for research by the CMP.

DIKO MP Christos Senekis described the fact that 2.500 unidentified bones remain as an insult to the state. He spoke of disappointing progress in the identification process and stressed that the main reason for this situation is Turkey's tough stance.

DIPA MP Michalis Giakoumis said the government should continue to push for a reduction in Turkey's painless stance.
KYPE source