Four of the 55 Syrians that arrived on a Turkish boat at the shores of Tillyria on Tuesday had been reportedly deported from Cyprus in the past, according to police officials.
A total of 55 men, women and children arrived in the north western region of Tillyria – in what is quickly becoming a common practice for human traffickers transporting migrants and refugees from war-torn regions into EU member states.
An inspection of the arrivals by the Migration Department quickly resulted in the discovery of four people that had in the past been deported from the island because they were illegal immigrants.
For this reason, the four will be detained away from the remaining 51 and are expected to be deported from Cyprus once again.
Efforts are meanwhile underway to locate the traffickers that had brought them onto the island from Turkey. Police also say that a search of the area by the Coast Guard in Limnitis – where the refugees were discovered on a rocky shoreline – were reportedly blocked by Turkish Cypriot vessels.
The 51 men, women and children were kept overnight at the sports hall of the local primary school in Kato Pyrgos and were on Wednesday expected to be taken to the Reception Centre for Asylum Seekers.
All were examined by doctors who treated some of the women and children for dehydration. The Cyprus Civil Defence were also dispatched to the area to provide clothes and other items for the children.
Kato Pyrgos Community Leader Costas Michaelides told reporters that it appeared that the migrants had been at sea for quite a few days with the human traffickers reportedly waiting for the right moment to dock illegally in Cyprus.