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24 May, 2024
 
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Cypriot House Speaker calls out kompromat post

Police fear insufficient security for Demetriou and family, deny drug arrest cover-up

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Cyprus Police announced extra security measures on Monday for the House Speaker and members of her family, following the emergence of allegations on social media regarding a drug arrest cover-up and fake news counter claims from the top legislator.

House Speaker Annita Demetriou on Monday filed a complaint with police following postings on social media that suggested the arrest of a suspect who turned state prosecution witness in a serious drug case had been kept quiet because he was the brother of a high ranking official.

Demetriou, who is seeking the presidency of the DISY conservative party, took to Facebook on Monday evening to announce she had filed a complaint with police after “my family and I have been for some time targeted by political mudslinging.”

'But when the target is a young woman politician, some people are tempted to believe it, she had it coming, they’d say” Demetriou wrote

Earlier posts and comments on social media implied that Demetriou’s brother had been arrested in connection with a serious drug case in what was described as an attempt to cover it up, an allegation vehemently denied by police.

The Facebook page, which targets corruption and often calls on politicians to resign, called for transparency over police security at the House Speaker’s paternal home.

“Whom are they protecting? The detained person or the political figure that is related to him by blood?” the post asked.

Demetriou said she initially she did not pay attention to the posts, saying there were “obvious aims” behind political mud thrown at her.

“But when persons in my family circle are being targeted through leaks of total lies, being smeared and tarnished without ever allowing others to take such liberties, then I have a moral obligation to step up to the plate and speak out,” Demetriou wrote.

The House Speaker further said “lies and immorality cannot prevail and I will not allow it.”

House Speaker calls out "fake news"

“I inform you that I have already filed a complaint with Cyprus Police regarding the leaking of fake news concerning all of the above,” Demetriou wrote.

Police also issued a statement in the evening around 8pm saying they were investigating the spread of fake news, following a complaint filed by the House Speaker.

The announcement also said information evaluated and deemed reliable had prompted police to increase security measures for Demetriou and her close relatives.

But police denied the added measures were linked to the social media post.

Police spokesperson Christos Andreou confirmed there was police security at Demetriou’s paternal residence but told state radio on Tuesday morning that guards were placed there a few days ago, prior to the post, after information about threats were deemed credible.

“Increased police presence as mentioned above concerns the adoption of security measures and has nothing to do with the post of a specific social media webpage, which is completely baseless, false, and in no way reflects reality,” the police announcement said.

The original post

An original post and subsequent comments appeared to draw a link between an alleged arrest of Demetriou’s brother and a potential cover-up of the incident.

“Which brother of a high-ranking official got arrested for drugs and they are trying to cover it up?” the original post asked, adding “I love Annita.”

Demetriou said the allegation was “unbelievable.”

“But when the target is a young woman politician, some people are tempted to believe it. She had it coming, they’d say,” she wrote on Monday.

House Speaker "neither terrorized nor compromised"

Demetriou, who became the first madam speaker of the Republic of Cyprus in 2021, went on to say she would not be terrorized either as a person or House Speaker, “nor do I allow anyone to think I have been compromised.”

“All my actions and attitude towards political life have been about uniting forces and breaking stereotypes. This is what I will do this time also, with transparency, without any fear,” Demetriou said.

Transparency advocate says "all is good" after clarification

The Facebook page later said “all is good” after clarification from police.

“But why don’t they come out and say clearly what is the danger at the paternal home of the House Speaker? And actually based on information we have, they had police there since last week,” the post later claimed.

Police have declined to provide further details.

But local reports on Tuesday said there were additional claims made about other state officials, with media sources suggesting the allegations were linked to someone inside the correctional facilities at Nicosia Central Prisons.

TAGS
Cyprus  |  politics  |  House Speaker  |  police  |  fake news  |  drugs  |  arrest  |  witness protection  |  Annita Demetriou

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