Cypriot authorities fear a number of Islamic State fighters might have entered the island with Syrian refugees. According to a report by Cypriot newspaper “Politis”, photographs depicting Syrians who arrived as refugees in Cyprus show that some of them took part in the civil war in Syria as fighters of the Islamic State.
As the report says, during a random check on asylum seekers’ mobile phones at the refugee accommodation centre, Cypriot authorities found saved photos of Syrians applying for asylum posing with arms dressed in Islamic State “uniforms”.
At a meeting held yesterday at the presidential palace, the interior minister and the head of the country’s secret services informed the Cypriot president of the news. The photos are being examined and the suspected Syrians are under discreet surveillance and will be required to explain the images. The Syrian refugee land in the free southern part of Cyprus via Turkey and the northern occupied part of the island. They pass through the free part of the island from unattended crossings along the UN green line.
Most of them come from the Syrian provinces that had been ISIS strongholds. Nicosia is concerned about the situation and has increased its security and surveillance measures along the green line. while it will also request aid from the EU to curb the refugee flows.