Five Egyptian fishermen freed in north Cyprus

A court in the northern city of Kyrenia fined the five fishermen 500 euros each and allowed them to leave with their boat (Flickr)
Updated 29 September 2018
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Five Egyptian fishermen freed in north Cyprus

CAIRO: Five Egyptian fishermen detained in breakaway northern Cyprus have been freed, Egypt’s foreign ministry said Friday, after diplomatic protests against their arrest by Turkish forces.
A court in the northern city of Kyrenia fined the five fishermen 500 euros each and allowed them to leave with their boat, Egypt’s foreign ministry said in a statement.
The Greek-Cypriot company that owns the boat paid the fines, the ministry added.
The boat is scheduled to arrive at the southern port of Limassol in the Republic of Cyprus on Saturday, the statement said.
Personnel on board a Turkish military vessel arrested the five fishermen on September 21 and towed their boat to Kyrenia, the Cyprus News Agency said, citing the boat owner.
Turkish Cypriot media said the fishermen were arrested for straying into Turkish-controlled waters, 14 kilometers off the island’s north coast.
The Cypriot government said it had protested to the United Nations over the detention of the Cypriot flagged vessel and its crew.
Cyprus has been divided since 1974 when Turkish troops occupied its northern third in response to an Athens-sponsored military coup seeking to unite the Mediterranean island with Greece.
Turkey is the only country to recognize the breakaway Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus, while the rest of the island is a European Union member state.
Turkey has long maintained as many as 35,000 troops in the breakaway north although the military does not give official figures.


Khamenei appoints new chief commander for Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps - state TV

Updated 30 min 53 sec ago
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Khamenei appoints new chief commander for Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps - state TV

  • President Donald Trump on April 8 designated the Guards a terrorist organization
  • Channel announced appointment of Brig. Gen. Hossein Salami to the position

DUBAI: Iran’s top authority Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei has replaced the chief commander of the elite Revolutionary Guards, state TV reported on Sunday, days after the United States designated the group a foreign terrorist organization.
The TV station did not give a reason for the change when it announced the appointment of Brig. Gen. Hossein Salami to the position.
“The Supreme Leader has appointed Salami as the new commander-in-chief of the Guards, who will replace Mohammad Ali Jafari,” it said. Jafari had held the post since September 2007.
President Donald Trump on April 8 designated the Guards a terrorist organization, in an unprecedented step that drew Iranian condemnation and raised concerns about retaliatory attacks on US forces. The designation took effect on April 15.
The Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) is in charge of Iran’s ballistic missile and nuclear programs. Tehran has warned that it has missiles with a range of up to 2,000 km (1,242 miles), putting Israel and US military bases in the region within reach.