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Crossing activity surged as coup got underway

Police figures have shown that the stream of people crossing from the north of Cyprus into the south surged on Friday just as news of the coup was leaking from Turkey.

This majority of those crossing into the south, according to the same figures were Greek Cypriots or residents in the Republic of Cyprus, fearing that the unrest would spill into the Turkish Cypriot community.

On Monday, Turkey widened a crackdown on suspected supporters of a failed military coup, taking the number of people rounded up in the armed forces and judiciary to 6,000, and the government said it was in control of the country and economy.

Lines of cars were seen at the checkpoints of Ayios Dometios, Astromeritis and Vrysoules as well as a smaller rise in the number of pedestrians walking over on foot from the north to the south at Ledra and Ledra Palace.

There was also a small decrease (around 10%) in the number of people crossing over from the south to the north on Saturday.

Police are also expecting low figures in the number of crossings over the next few days but that is also attributed to the July 20 anniversary of the 1974 Turkish invasion.

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