Foreign smugglers are using the unrecognised status of the TRNC to smuggle cigarettes and fuel oil. This trade is estimated at TL 3 billion a year.
Following an earlier report this week on a combined police operation which raided two cargo vessels outside the port of Famagusta, both crews were arrested and investigations are continuing.
The ‘Flamingo’ was under the Sierra Leone flag and the ‘Sirena’ under the Togo flag.
66 million packets of cigarettes were found on the ships.