Cypriot Justice Minster Christos Vakis, kidnapped at his home on July 27 by supporters of General george Grivas, was released last night (August 26, 1973) unharmed at his brother's residence.
Cypriot Justice Minster Christos Vakis, kidnapped at his home on July 27 by supporters of General george Grivas, was released last night (August 26, 1973) unharmed at his brother's residence. He returned home immediately to his wife, Elena, and their two young sons.
In a television broadcast two hours after he was freed, Mr. Vakis said he did not want to give any details of the kidnapping for the time being. He called for unity of Greek Cypriots in pursuit of "the national policy" a term that is taken to mean unification with Greece.
But he did tell reporters that he was in good condition and had seen well treated. He had not seen General Grivas while in captivity.
In a letter to Mrs. Vakis three weeks ago, the General, who is 75, said her husband had been "arrested" for his responsibility for alleged maltreatment of Enosis (Union with Greece) supporters in Cypriot Jails. Eoka B, the Grivas organisation, published a list of conditions for Mr. Vakis's release, terms which included an amnesty for political prisoners, reinstatement of dismissed policemen and public servants and new elections to replace President Makarios. The Archbishop rejected all the demands as "blackmail" and Mr. Vakis was apparently freed unilaterally. Mrs. Vakis led a 500-woman demonstration to the Presidential Palace in Nicosia last Friday (August 24,), with placards labelling General Grivas a "criminal".
The Cypriot Minister of Justice, who is 37, studied law in London (1955-59) and served as a judge on the Island before entering his present position last year.
SYNOPSIS: In Cyprus on Sunday, Justice Minister Christos Vakis was released unharmed by the supporters of General George Grivas who kidnapped him a month ago. He returned home to a fond welcome from his wife Elena, their two young sons, relative and friends, almost a month to the day since he was forced to leave the house by gunmen belonging to the Grivas organisation Eoka B. By way of explanation, the General wrote to Mrs. Vakis that her husband was being held for his responsibility for alleged police maltreatment of supporters of Enosis, union with Greece. In reply Mrs. is led a demonstration labelling Grivas a "criminal".
Mr. Vakis said he had not seen the General while in captivity. He had been treated well and was in good condition, but declined for the moment to give further details of his abduction. In a television broadcast later, the Minister called for Greek Cypriot unity in pursuit of the national policy -- a reference to union with Greece.
Shortly after coming home Mr. Vakis called President Makarios to give him the news. The Archbishop had strongly rejected Eoka ransom demands.