Dozens Injured During Seven-Hour Battle at Cyprus Migrant Camp
A massive fight between Syrians and Africans at a migrant camp on the island of Cyprus ended with dozens injured and widespread damage, according to reports.
Riot police were called in to restore order during a battle that lasted over seven hours, authorities say.
Investigators believe a minor skirmish quickly exploded into a major conflict between migrants from Syria and multiple African nations, leaving 25 in need of medical care.
“Windowpanes were shattered, beds and other equipment smashed and a section of the camp’s fencing sustained extensive damage,” Cypriot Interior Ministry spokesman Loizos Michael told the Associated Press.
— Pournararefugee (@pournararefugee) January 12, 2021
The camp, which lies outside the capital city of Nicosia, is currently home to around 1,500 migrants, despite being designed to only hold up to 1,000.
The vast majority of migrants arriving on Cyprus are single males, at least one-quarter of whom claim to be from Syria, Michael says.
Some of the men are suspected of having ties to jihadist factions.
When interviewed, many of the migrants reportedly say they are “forced” to go to Cyprus by Turkish authorities.
Over 7,000 migrants applied for asylum in Cyprus last year.
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