The company which manages Ktima Makenzy conference hall, whose tenant was evicted on Thursday so that the property can be handed back to its Turkish Cypriot owner, claims that the eviction was illegal.
In an announcement on Facebook on Sunday, MA Ktima Makenzy LTD says that on January 17 “an illegal invasion took place by Larnaca District Administration employees accompanied by 100 armed men of the Emergency Response Unit (MMAD) which acted without a warrant or a court order.”
The company describes the eviction as “led by the Ministry of Interior” and says that it had as a result the “forceful and immediate interruption” of its operations.
It adds that the premises on the property were sealed without leaving them time to react.
Concluding, it says that a company spokesperson will contact all clients who have future bookings in the hall.
Under current law, property belonging to Turkish Cypriots permanently resident in the Turkish-occupied north is managed by the custodian of Turkish Cypriot properties which is under the Interior Ministry. Properties are rented by the Custodian, with priority going to refugees.
According to a Larnaca District Court decision, the property had wrongfully came under the control of the Custodian of Turkish Cypriot properties -who leased the property to the Greek Cypriot tenant in 2010 – as the owners are British citizens.
The original owner of the property, Fikret Ali Riza, was born in Nicosia in 1926 and migrated to London in 1951, nine years before the Republic of Cyprus was founded. Before he died in 2000, he had transferred the property to his son Raymond Riza, who was born in Britain in 1955. Both are British citizens.
According to the decision, the Greek Cypriot tenants are not allowed to rent, enter and use the 1/2 of the property, which belongs to Raymond Riza. Also, the Court ordered the Republic to remove all construction from the property.
On Thursday morning police entered the property, asked the staff to evacuate the premises and sealed the building.
The property is still guarded by police.