Enclaved Man Murdered

Protest to UN over 'murder' of enclaved man

By Jean Christou

Cyprus Mail: Friday, April 09, 1999

CYPRUS has protested to the United Nations over what it calls the "brutal murder" of an 85-year-old Greek Cypriot enclaved man in the occupied areas.

Foreign Ministry Permanent Secretary Alecos Shambos lodged the protests with the ambassadors of the five permanent members of the Security Council.

He also called on the UN to implement more effective means for the protection and security of the enclaved.

Unficyp has already launched an investigation into the suspicious death of Elias Mantira, spokesman Paul Kolken said yesterday.

"We started an investigation because of the results of the post mortem," Kolken said. "But we are keeping an open mind on what comes."

A post mortem on Wednesday on the body of Mantira from the Karpass peninsula concluded he had died from head injuries as a result of "serious violence".

The post mortem was carried out by state pathologist Sophoclis Sophocleous with UN doctors in attendance. Diko deputy and forensics expert Marios Matsakis also participated on behalf of the victim's family.

Matsakis said yesterday there had been various injuries to Mantira's body including the head, neck, arms and hands.

"He was murdered," Matsakis said.

He said the UN medical team at the post mortem had seen the same signs and instantly decided to launch a murder investigation. "We are not hopeful of much due to the occupation forces," Matsakis said.

He said Mantira had lived alone and had been found dead last week on the floor of his house under suspicious circumstances.

He said the "occupation forces" had carried out a "so-called" post mortem which concluded that the elderly man had died of a coronary. "They did not do a proper autopsy," Matsakis said.

"His heart was normal for his age."

Matsakis said the incident proved that no death of an enclaved person should be taken at face value and that a post mortem should be carried out every time.

Almost 500 Greek Cypriots, mostly elderly people, live in the Karpass peninsula.