Turks shoot Cypriot marcher

Security forces in Turkish-occupied northern Cyprus shot dead a Greek- Cypriot demonstrator and wounded two British peace-keepers yesterday in one of the worst days of violence since the 1974 Turkish invasion. Costas Simitis, Greece's Prime Minister, denounced the killing as "a criminal act by the occupying forces of Cyprus".

The soldiers, serving with the 39th Regiment Royal Artillery as part of a United Nations force, were said not to be in serious condition.

The violence began when 250 Greek Cypriots stormed into the UN-patrolled zone dividing the Turkish-controlled northern one-third of Cyprus from the Greek-Cypriot south. The demonstrators had attended the nearby funeral in eastern Cyprus of Tasos Isaac, 24, a Greek Cypriot clubbed to death in the buffer zone on Sunday by men in civilian clothes from the Turkish side.

The man killed yesterday was Solomos Solomos, 26, a cousin of Isaac. He was shot in the neck as he tried to haul down a Turkish-Cypriot flag from a sentry post on the edge of the Turkish-Cypriot lines.

The rise in tension has set back efforts to make a fresh start at solving the Cyprus problem. The island has been divided since the Turkish army launched an invasion in July 1974 in response to a Greek-sponsored coup in Nicosia by supporters of Cyprus's union with Greece.

Comments