Saturday, January 25, 2014

Paphos: Belgian Tourist, 22, Assaulted, Robbed in Kato Paphos, Arrest Made

According to http://incyprus.com, a 17-year-old teenager was arrested in Kato Paphos on Saturday (January 25) in connection with a violent mugging of a Belgian tourist, 22, which occurred at 0335 hours resulting in the injury and robbery of the victim.

The assailant was robbed of his wrist-watch and two mobile phones.

COMMENT: Subsequently, Greek Cypriot police officers responded to the scene and eventually arrested a 17-year-old suspect possessing the victim's wrist-watch and two mobile phones in his possession.

No doubt street-wise, the suspect contends he found the wrist-watch and mobile phones in the street. Nevertheless, he will be charged at an arraignment in the days ahead.

The victim was admitted to a Paphos hospital for treatment to minor injuries. 

I have served in Cyprus on two occasions, once following the Turkish invasion of Cyprus in 1974 and during the late 1990s where I served as chief investigator of the US Cyprus Missing Persons Program.

Unfortunately, in recent years, violent street crime has been on the rise thanks to the influx of Russian organized crime and due to Cyprus' debt crisis. 

The Overseas Security Advisory Council (OSAC) fails to have a 2012 or 2013 Crime and Safety Report for Nicosia retrieval on-line, which suggests that such reports have not written. Therefore, I'm unable report what the threat level in the capital is.

Yet, based on continuing anecdotal crime reports, I would speculate that the threat level on the US Department of State's four-tier threat level system is that the threat level in Greek-held Nicosia is either "High" or "Medium" on descending levels of "Critical," "High," "Medium" and "Low."

All travelers to Nicosia are urged to be cautious, particularly during hours of darkness. I would discourage visitors from walking alone after dark, to use expensive smartphones discreetly and to use reputable taxis during the evening.

As a matter of interest, north of the "Green Line" in Nicosia, violent crime is rare.