CNA News

Cyprus on alert due to Middle East situation, says Minister of Justice

Cyprus is on alert for security reasons, but also due to the large number of people expected to arrive trying to escape from dangerous areas, said Minister of Justice and Public Order, Anna Koukkides Procopiou, on Friday, referring to the volatile situation in the Middle East.

Asked, on the sidelines of a conference of the Police and the Drug Enforcement Service (YKAN) about illegal substances, held at the University of Cyprus, if satisfactory security measures were being taken, given the volatile situation in the Middle East, Procopiou replied “unfortunately, the situation is deteriorating daily”. Tensions are escalating in the Eastern Mediterranean, not only in the Middle East, and inevitably, they also affect Cyprus, she continued.

She added that the level of alertness for the security forces of the Republic of Cyprus in recent weeks is higher than before, saying that there is vigilance.

“Yes, we are on alert as the Republic of Cyprus for security reasons, but also because it is expected that there will be a large influx of people who will try to escape from areas of danger”, the Minister said.

Procopiou noted that there has also been an evacuation of citizens from third countries from Israel, adding that if things worsen in Lebanon, we should also expect a new wave of people trying to escape from danger and travel to a safer country.

The Justice Minister said there is cooperation with European authorities to manage the situation as well as with the United States, and with partners in the Eastern Mediterranean, saying that there is coordination with Egypt, Jordan, and Israel.

“We also saw the recent contacts of the President of the Republic and the message he took with him to the European Council, that Cyprus is a pillar of security and stability in the region and can play a significant role in the developments”, she said.