Officials from the Green Party say a man who was parking his trailer at Baths of Aphrodite for the last 30 years was assaulted by young men who went to clear the way for a towing truck.
According to a Philenews report, a male motor home owner was refusing to move out of a location used as a trailer park and failed to meet a final deadline last month. He had been using a site near the Baths of Aphrodite, on the western side of Chrysochou Bay in Paphos district, as his permanent place of residence according to reports.
This week, according to a complaint shared with Green party officials, six individuals in two vehicles came to the area and detained the trailer occupant by force, taking away his mobile phone and cutting off a big chunk of the carob tree that was next to his motor home. The youths allegedly had gone there with chainsaws to assist the task of a towing truck that was ordered to remove the trailer from the area. They also reportedly moved out of the way two vehicles that had been parked next to the trailer.
Previously, trailer park residents were given advanced notices by the local council of Neo Chorio village, warning people that any trailer left in the area beyond September 15 would be subject to removal at owner’s cost. Crews went in last month very early in the morning and removed empty trailers using tow trucks, while leaving behind about five which had occupants inside at the time of the operation.
The youths allegedly went there with chainsaws to help a towing truck that was ordered to remove the last trailer from the area
The Cyprus Camping Association said that abandoned trailers could be removed in accordance with the law, while adding that some trailers were not abandoned. Motor home owners also said the local council had no legal basis to issue the warning in the first place.
But local community representatives insist the eviction operation took place legally, adding that the law provides that “any unauthorized trailers and other makeshift structures” are liable to be removed from the Baths of Aphrodite.
Andreas Machimos, a local leader, told Kathimerini Cyprus last month that the site reflected poorly on the national park in the area.
While Greens did not argue whether or not the last occupant at the trailer park had violated any ordinances, they insisted that the eviction attempt took place unlawfully and with the use of force by individuals who took the matter into their own hands instead of waiting for the police.
“We are not here to discuss whether he was using the space in the last 30 years as his permanent residence, legally or nor illegally, but what’s important is that the way the removal operation took place was violent and illegal.”
The ousted man reportedly filed a formal complaint calling on law enforcement to investigate the incident, otherwise the “law of the jungle will rule the day,” he told police.