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EOKA veterans to sue British Government

10 August 2013

North Cyprus News - EOKA arrested by Brit soldier

A lawyer, acting on behalf of former EOKA veterans in a claim for personal injuries and human rights abuses suffered whilst in custody of the British colonial administration in the latter half of the 1950s, will be pressing their case.

The lawyer, representing the veterans will be visiting Cyprus again in early September in order to build the case against the UK Government’s Foreign Office.

KJ Conroy & Co Solicitors have been representing the EOKA veterans since June 2011 and have been visiting Cyprus on a regular basis to interview potential claimants and take witness statements.

Kevin Conroy of the Birmingham-based law firm has already taken the first step in the British legal process towards pursuing compensation for his clients. Eight letters of claim on behalf of two women and six men members of the EOKA have been sent to the Foreign Office, who are represented by the Treasury solicitor. The letters set out the details of the allegations and provide the accused with the opportunity to investigate them over the course of six months.

A precedent was set in the cases brought forward by three Kenyans, members of the Mau-Mau tribe that also accused the colonial power of torture. However, in the end the British government settled for a hefty compensation, while Foreign Secretary William Hague expressed his “sincere regret” for the torture and ill-treatment Kenyans suffered under the colonial administration.

Conroy commented that the government’s approach in the Cypriot case was “ill-advised”, as the Mau-Mau case clearly sets a precedent. Hague was quick to add to his apology to the Kenyans that since the British government had settled out of court – offering £19.9m to 5,228 Kenyan prison camp survivors – the courts had made no finding of liability against the government.

“The precedent is clear. I believe that my Cypriot clients have very strong legal arguments,” said the British solicitor, adding that he considers a repeat of the Mau-Mau case scenario very plausible.

Victims and lawyers said that fresh evidence of abuse is emerging from now declassified British government files as well as a Red Cross investigation into abuse allegations in 1957. Cyprus gained independence in 1960 when Archbishop Makarios was elected president.

A French lawyer working on the case has come up with detailed eye-witness accounts by the organisation’s inspectors of the time, supporting the EOKA fighters’ allegations.

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  • Welly

    All leading civilisations have been brutal in their wars. EOKA is recent in a so called civil country & elements in the South have not changed their attitudes or brutal objectives.They are cowards who hide behind other nations to do their dirty work.

  • albay john

    What a greek cypriot swindle. These murderers schould all be in front of a court and be charged with multi murders of both british and Turkish cypriots! These thugs get a pension and medals from the puppet goverment,when they should all be in jail! I hpe the british tell them to go to hell!!

    • paddywack

      Should have been lined up against a wall years ago.

    • cyanan

      turks are the murderers here. just remember your history and when did the first turks come to the island and destroyed the island. Greek cypriots have always been in a constant fight. Once the turks then the british.

      • albay john

        This is not true! I am very sad to inform you that the greek cypriots and your MR sampson and his EOKA gang were murdering us Turkish cypriots. May I suggest you check your fact before you post untruths! I hope the PC people who check my posts are now happy the I have toned down my comments about our “friends who love us” in the south,I really would not like to offend their feelings and cause them to complain! (and if you believe that I am the king of china)

        • cyanan

          when did the first turk came to cyprus and destroyed our churches? when? im talking about that. since then we have been fighting because you came to cyprus and destroyed everything and of course cypriots wanted their land back…looks like your history is very poor. you can only speak about eoka. because the turks never caused any troubles back then..no they are always the innocent.

          • Kibristan

            Nope, the GCs were allowed complete autonomy in their religion. It was this freedom that the church leaders used to foment the hatred that they still maintain. All those who were born on the island had equal right to live and prosper in Cyprus but the EOKA not only wanted to get rid of the British they decided to kill off all the TCs too. So the TMT was born and the rest is literally history.

            As awful as everything was back in the EOKA days what is truly terrible is what the EOKA caused in 1974. Their stupidity caused the loss of a prosperous future for all Cypriots.