Spokesman: Police have begun immediate investigation into ‘Cyprus Confidential’ reports
08:00 - 16 November 2023
The Police have already begun the evaluation of the reports related to the ‘Cyprus Confidential’ investigation, Government Spokesman Konstantinos Letymbiotis has said, adding that depending on the outcome, procedures will be initiated to investigate possible criminal offences.
In statements to journalists on 15 November, the Spokesman said that instructions have been given to give priority to the examination of those cases that are already being investigated by the Police and are mentioned in the reports.
Some of the actions that are being referred to in the reports, were already known to the authorities Letymbiotis said and pointed out that the competent authorities responded to all the questions raised by journalists in the previous period.
He added that the reports do not refer to actions that seem to violate either sanctions or the regulations of the Republic of Cyprus.
They do not find, he said, a legislative gap, or a gap in the framework surrounding the Republic of Cyprus.
"It is in this context that we will continue to strengthen even more the legislative and institutional framework of our country,” he said.
He added that the Council of Ministers, in June 2023, had taken a series of measures, some of which have been implemented, while others are on track to be implemented. The Spokesman said that they are also in very close cooperation with the United Kingdom regarding the establishment of the Sanctions Implementation Unit, but also regarding the further strengthening of the institutional framework of Cyprus.
He reiterated the statement of the President of the Republic, that there will be zero tolerance for issues of corruption, money laundering or avoidance of sanctions.
What is important, the Spokesman said, is Cyprus' reputation and credibility.
He noted that in recent years, legislative regulations and measures have been taken, which have upgraded the credibility adding that the government will continue on this path.
Asked whether a case concerning the transfer of 1.4 billion euro through Cyprus was under investigation or if it is new, he said that there were issues that were already known to the authorities and were already being investigated. These cases, he said, are cases that the Chief of Police himself has given instructions to be investigated as soon as possible.
Asked if the Government will proceed with the establishment of an investigative committee on the matter, he said that they are considering all the measures that can be taken and any decisions will be announced. The Spokesman assured that the government will take all the decisions that will be able to further shield the country's framework and send an even clearer message that the Republic of Cyprus, the Cypriot economy, the Cypriot system are perfectly protected.
Furthermore, he said that the current framework of the financial system, according to the relevant reports, is one of the strictest internationally adding that 'it is precisely in this direction that the further implementation of the actions, the decisions we have taken, will begin to be implemented and if it is necessary to take further decisions, we will announce it'.
He also said that last week there was a scheduled meeting, in the context of the President of the Republic's desire to monitor the timely implementation of the decisions of the Council of Ministers.
Within this month, he said, there will be completion and progress on a number of issues, while within the next days, the report will be received from the Ministry of Justice and the Police regarding ways to further strengthen investigations of such actions.
By the end of the week, he said, a relevant cooperation agreement is expected to be signed with the University of Cyprus. He added that the establishment of a central point of contact has already been completed, noting that after the experience with the latest US and UK sanctions, it appeared that the investigation process could be expedited through this arrangement.
The Spokesman said that no information that comes to light can be downgraded, the data that came to light last night will be evaluated and assured that if further decisions are needed, they will be taken.