Sunday, September 3, 2023

Cyprus: AKEL strongly condemns racist attacks against immigrants in Limassol

AKEL, the Progressive Party of Working People, strongly condemned Friday's racial violence against immigrants and refugees in Limassol, Cyprus.

On the night of Friday 1 September, far-right groups turned the city center into chaos, by smashing shops, throwing Molotov cocktail and chasing migrants. 

In a statement, AKEL called the incidents a "racist pogrom that consists a shame for the country", stressing out that the President and his government were responsible for the scale of the violence,

“The government and the police bear inexcusable responsibilities and must be held accountable. Why did they allow these hooded groups to attack Cypriots and foreigners, to destroy and loot in the centre of Limassol? Why do they refuse to enforce laws against organised hate speech and incitement to violence that have poisoned society to explosive levels for days,” AKEL said.

“The president and the government owe an answer to the public: will they continue to tolerate far-right violence, even for one more day? Mr President, it is your and your government’s responsibility to protect the lives and property of all citizens.”

During a radio interview, the General Secretary of AKEL, Stefanos Stefanou, said that the government is responsible for the serious incidents over the last few days in Limassol and Chloraka.

Stefanou called on President Christodoulides to take on his responsibilities or admit that the government ruling forces cannot assume their responsibilities and leave office.

AKEL leader stressed that what happened last night in Limassol was not unannounced, pointing out that it was known that there would be incidents. He also said that, according to testimonies of ordinary people who were in the region of Molos last night, the violence that was exerted before the eyes of the police was unbelievable.