Vandals desecrate Cypriot bishops' tombs
NICOSIA (Reuters) - Police in Cyprus arrested a Romanian man on Sunday on suspicion of desecrating the tombs of three archbishops and possibly taking remains from one of them.
Police said the 34-year-old had confessed to removing marble slabs covering the graves of three leaders of the Cypriot Orthodox church from the late 19th and early 20th century.
They also said skeletal remains had disappeared from one of the tombs, but that the remains from another, briefly thought to have been taken, had in fact been re-buried elsewhere years ago.
The suspect, who had not been charged, was arrested after turning up at a police station with a bag of human excrement, which he threw at police officers. He denied removing any human remains from the tombs.
"From what he says, it appears he has issues with the Church and holy grounds," said Kypros Michaelides, divisional police commander in Nicosia.
Most Greek Cypriots belong to the Church of Cyprus, which is an independent branch of the Eastern Orthodox Communion.
Last December thieves snatched the remains of late president Tassos Papadopoulos and hid them in another cemetery. The body was found this month and police say two people suspected of stealing the corpse for ransom are in custody.
(Reporting by Michele Kambas; Editing by Kevin Liffey)
- Tweet this
- Share this
- Digg this
- Canadian police see no apparent links in Quebec, Ottawa attacks
- Sensex gains in special trading session on Diwali
- Google launches new email service dubbed "Inbox"
- Apple CEO says to add 25 stores in China within two years - Sina
- UPDATE 2-Suspected Boko Haram fighters kidnap 25 girls in northeast Nigeria
Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper pledged to boost security forces' surveillance and detention powers on Thursday, a day after a gunman killed a soldier and raced through parliament before being shot dead. Full Article
U.S.-led air strikes killed 553 fighters, 32 civilians in Syria - monitor. Full Article