Police investigators remain in the dark over a violent confrontation with political undertones in Limassol on Wednesday, with reports saying an army captain in remanded custody is refusing to cooperate with law enforcement authorities.
According to local media, a 35-year-old male from Larnaca was arrested on Thursday following reports of a violent confrontation in the Kolossi area, Limassol district.
The suspect, described as a Greek Cypriot captain serving in the National Guard, got into a verbal argument on Facebook with a 36-year-old male from Limassol, with reports saying both men were ELAM supporters.
The suspect was strongly against the party supporting the government, while the alleged victim argued a vote for the budget was a necessary evil
It was reported that the argument started over the nationalist party’s stance ahead of a crucial vote in the House. The budget failed to be approved on Thursday, while ELAM joined the ruling party against opposition parties who ultimately defeated the bill.
The suspect was said to have been strongly against the anti-system party supporting the government as well as ruling party DYSI over the budget, while the other man argued a vote for the budget was a necessary evil under special circumstances. Earlier reports spoke of a difficult debate where delicate balances were adding pressure and causing rifts within smaller parties.
Local media said the online war of words got out of hand on Wednesday with the two men agreeing to meet in an open area in Kolossi in the early evening, on the eve of the vote.
Police said when the man from Larnaca arrived with friends at the meet up location, they were confronted by a group of males, with a brawl taking place between the two rival groups.
Hooded men attack out-of-towners
According to daily Politis, 10 to 15 hooded men attacked the out-of-town group, with the 36-year-old getting injured in the head during the ensuing fight. He was rushed to the Emergency Room at Limassol General Hospital, where he was treated in serious condition. Doctors on duty said the 36-year-old suffered post-traumatic amnesia and head trauma.
The 35-year-old suspect was detained on aggravated assault charges with police saying they were still investigating possible offences including assault, aggravated assault with intent to cause grievous bodily harm, conspiracy to commit a felony, unlawful assembly, causing public disturbance, possession and transport of a weapon, gun possession with intent to incite fear, and illegally carrying a handheld spray gun for launching toxic gases.
Police told Knews on Sunday that no other arrests were made in connection with the incident. Local media had reported that the army captain, who was remanded in custody for five days, was not cooperating with police. He was said to have refused to provide any details over the incident or answer specific questions.