Cypriots ‘vindicated’ after UK settlement of torture claims

NICOSIA, Cyprus (AP) – About three dozen Cypriots who alleged they were tortured while in custody during fighting against British colonial rule more than 60 years ago say they feel vindicated after the United Kingdom (UK) government agreed to pay them one million pounds sterling.

Britain’s Foreign Office Minister Alan Duncan announced late on Wednesday that the settlement isn’t an “admission of liability” or a “precedent” for any future claims against the UK. He said Britain regrets the violence that preceded Cypriot independence.

Thassos Sophocleous, who heads an association of former fighters who waged a four-year armed campaign just prior to Cyprus’ 1960 independence, told The Associated Press yesterday that the 33 Cypriots interpret the out-of-court settlement as the British government’s acknowledgement that they were tortured while in the hands of British authorities.