President Anastasiades accepts resignation of Justice Minister

President Anastasiades accepts resignation of Justice Minister

Investigations are ongoing at Xyliato-Mitsero

Developments in Cyprus’s political scene after the meeting of Justice Minister with President Anastasiades

By Michalis Michael

Developments in Cyprus are expected to take place at a political level, as we have seen in the previous hours, after the Justice Minister of the country, Ionas Nicholaou, handed in his resignation to the President of the Republic of Cyprus, Nicos Anastasiades.

“The search for accountability concerns all of us. I find it unfair to try to place responsibilities to the government and the minister when they know that the minister is not involved in investigating cases. I did not show disrespect to the criticisms but asked for an objective investigation of the responsibilities. I want to call on the public to continue to show confidence in the police body. I remained firm on the principles and values ​​of transparency”, said the outgoing Justice Minister.

What does Anastasiades has to say

President Anastasiades expressed his views on the matter of the resignation of the Minister in a written statement. He reiterated his shock for what is being reported and stressed that Ionas Nicholaou was a valuable associate.

“I have to admit that it is with great regret that I have accepted his resignation because I am deprived of the services of one of my closest associates. I would like to emphasize the political ethos that has always distinguished him and is shown by Mr. Nicholas. Ionas Nicholaou has done his duties as Minister diligently and leaves behind his multifaceted work, especially in the field of judicial and prison reform, as well as the police. While at the same time he has contributed decisively to the preparation of a series of reform bills that did not concern his ministry. He is submitting his resignation at a time when the radical reform of the justice system is in its final stage. Therefore, by accepting his resignation, I begged him to remain in his position to bring before the Council of Ministers within the next few days all the Reform Bills for the justice system, which is currently undergoing legal work in the Legal Service. I would like to reiterate how I share the shock and dismay of society for these unprecedented crimes. I want to assure the government’s determination to fully elucidate the shameful murders, but also a full investigation of the acts or omissions concerning the complaints about missing persons”, the President of the Republic of Cyprus said.

Regarding the inquiries

According to information a necropsy has already been made on the bodies found in a travel suitcase in Red Lake, Mitsero and the body found in a pit at Xindou shooting range in Orounda.

According to the same information, the necropsies on the two bodies have been completed but their results have not been disclosed yet.

For today, a necropsy has been scheduled for the other two bodies found in the well of the old mine in Mitsero, by the same group of forensic doctors. Investigations on the Red Lake in Mitsero and Lake Mei in Xyliatos took place yesterday without finding anything, but will resume at both sites today. British experts today visited the four sites where investigations were carried out, namely the Mitsero Mine, the Red Lake, Lake Memi and the Orounda firing range.

A cement block has been found

An object, which appears to be a cement block, was found late in the afternoon yesterday in the Red Lake in Mitsero. The area where the object was detected has been marked and attempts will be made to retrieve it. According to the same information, the five Scotland Yard advisors who arrived in Cyprus on Easter Monday to assist with their expertise in the murder investigation will depart from the island on Friday.

Police spokesperson Andreas Angelidis, referring to the investigations conducted both in the Red Lake in Mitsero and in Lake Memi at Xyliato, said that they will continue, taking into account the degree of danger, the various difficulties and the security issues.

With regard to British experts, he noted that there were some initial conclusions that were being discussed with the investigating group and added that the talks would continue “so depending on how they will go, we will see if there will be anything to be communicated about these meetings”./ibna