Five crew members of a Greek Cypriot owned fishing boat were arrested and taken to Kyrenia police station for trespassing in TRNC territorial waters.
On Friday, crew from a Turkish naval vessel boarded the fishing boat, which was found seven miles off the coast of Korucam, to make a search and then escorted the boat to Kyrenia port.
Deputy PM and Foreign Minister Kudret Ozersay said on his Facebook account that he had personally gone to see the five crew members on his way home from the ministry. He said that the men, who were Egyptian, were being well treated by the police. They will be arraigned on Saturday for illegally entering TRNC waters.
Ozersay noted that he had published his comments on social media to counteract the inaccurate and conflicting statements made by the Greek Cypriot press regarding the incident.
Meanwhile, Greek Cypriot daily ‘Cyprus Mail’ reports that spokesman for the Greek Cypriot government Prodromos Prodromou said “it is a serious incident” and the government has already lodged a protest with the United Nations.
The UN said it was in touch with both sides in a bid to resolve the issue.
The owner of the boat, which had set off from Limassol, Aristos Aristidou, said it was the fourth incident involving the Turkish navy.
He said that on three previous occasions, Turkish navy ships had harassed his fishing vessels in international waters.
BRTK, Cyprus Mail