Two Turkish Cypriots Muhammet Sigdeniz and Mehmet Tosun have been sentenced to death in Malaysia for trafficking drugs.
The Greek Cypriot authorities, who had already taken up the case through diplomatic channels and helped pay the pair’s legal expenses, said that they would lodge an appeal and might make representations through EU representatives in Malaysia.
The men’s families have urged the TRNC authorities to join the fight for clemency.
The families are now seeking help from all sides, including Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Cyprus President Nikos Anastasiades. Osman Iseguven, brother in law of Mehmet Tosun, commented: “The Cyprus government has been trying to assist them, but we have not seen any help from the TRNC.”
A relative of Mr Sigdeniz, who asked not to be named, claimed that the TRNC government – which would have to act through Turkey, had made no effort to help to save the pair.
Hakki Onen, Turkish Cypriot head of the bi-communal Crime and Criminal Matters Committee, has been working with the men’s families and liaising with officials from the Republic of Cyprus. “The Greek Cypriot government has given the directive to appeal against the verdict. We are following the issue closely”, he said.