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Syrian Faces Trial for Cyprus Double Murder

Syrian Faces Trial for Cyprus Double Murder

Monday, 6 December, 2021 - 06:30
People paddle on a stand-up board during sunrise near a beach in Larnaca, Cyprus August 27, 2020. REUTERS/Yiannis Kourtoglou

A Syrian man is to go on trial in Cyprus for the murder of two foreign women whose bodies were unearthed Sunday in the grounds of a mountain village home, police said.


The 32-year Syrian, who remains unnamed and was initially arrested for abducting the women, had helped police find the bodies after a days-long search, AFP reported.


The island's CNA news agency identified the women as Maria Gazibagandova, 33, from the Russian republic of Dagestan, and Khaiat Alraeesi a 43-year-old from Syria.


The two, who Cypriot media said had arrived on the holiday island as tourists, were reported missing on November 17.


"Police used all available means... to locate them, but if you look at the ground, the depth and the surface, it is clear it would have been impossible to find them without his indication," police chief Stelio Papatheodorou told reporters.


"Unfortunately, the fears and suspicions of the police have been confirmed," he said. The women had been shot on the day they went missing.


"According to the suspect, he was the only one who committed the crime, and according to him, he shot them with a hunting gun," the police chief said, without giving a motive.


Investigators said the suspect, arrested last week, had access to the holiday home in the Troodos mountains of central Cyprus where blood from one of the women had been discovered.


The suspect is expected to appear in court Monday and tried for double murder.


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