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Cyprus government describes US report on missing persons as “shocking”
2006-10-26 11:36:41

Nicosia, Oct 23 – Foreign Minister George Lillikas described as “shocking” and “traumatic” a report on the issue of missing persons, published in the US ''Defence and Foreign Affairs Strategic Policy'' journal.

According to the report, which was also published in Sunday’s edition of “Phileleftheros” newspaper, Greek Cypriot and Greek persons, missing since the 1974 Turkish invasion of Cyprus, were used as human guinea-pigs in experiments in the Turkish military’s biochemical laboratories between the years 1984 and 1988.

Mr. Lillikas also said that the government is expecting to receive the report in order to make its position known and take all action to find out if it is correct.

“It is a human tragedy with many families of the missing persons involved, who suffer a lot more when such reports are published. Therefore we have to be very careful before we announce our positions”, Mr. Lillikas added.

Meanwhile, a report of the UN Secretary General on ''Missing Persons'', based on answers given by interested member states, experts and regional organisations, has been circulated as an official document of the 61st session of the General Assembly.

The report, which was submitted by the Secretary General after instructions of the General Assembly Resolution 59/189, includes a summary of the answer of the Cypriot government.

The government of Cyprus, with reference to persons missing in Cyprus as a result of the 1974 invasion and military occupation by Turkey of part of the territory of Cyprus, noted that military personnel and reservists, as well as civilians, including women and children, were captured by the armed forces during July and August 1974 and have since disappeared.

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