Victims of hate crime and racially motivated violence in South Cyprus are hesitant to contact police for fear of making their situation worse or lack of trust that the authorities will investigate their complaints.
According to the Council of Europe’s advisory committee on the Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities (FCNM), published on Monday, there has been an increase in racially motivated violence and crime against all racial minorities in the South. These include attacks on immigrants, Roma and Turkish Cypriots.
The advisory committee has called on South Cyprus to adopt more targeted training of police with regard to human rights and to develop anti-discrimination standards in the police force. It also recommends that all charges of police misconduct are promptly and conscientiously investigated.
However, the committee noted that despite the 2012/13 economic crisis and budget cuts, there has been continuing support for racial minorities, in particular in the field of education.
In conclusion, it called on the South to overcome ethnic divisions in daily life and to facilitate the formation of an open, multilingual and inclusive society.