News Local Students abroad sue to come home

Students abroad sue to come home

Two students who are at universities abroad have asked the court to issue interim orders that will allow them to come home.

One of the cases was filed at the Nicosia district court and the second at the administrative court, the Cyprus News Agency reports.

The students are challenging the constitutionality and legality of government measures and are asking for an urgent interim order that will allow them to come home.

Attorney general Costas Clerides told the Cyprus News Agency that every citizen has the right to appear in court. The Republic has the right and obligation to defend the necessity and legality of the painful measures taken in the interest of the public good, he added.

“I do not think that during these critical times for our country and the world as whole it is pleasant for anyone to spend time on judicial battles regarding the legality of life or death measures, given that they are exercising rights, justice cannot stand idle,” he concluded.

The government has come under fierce criticism over decrees that required those wishing to return to Cyprus to have certificates they do not have coronavirus. Critics say  over stretched health services abroad will not issue such certificates.

It later opened a brief window allowing those who had been away for a few days or for medical reasons to return. Some did and others are still abroad. It is also working on getting students who have medical problems homes, possibly next week.

But the bast bulk of Cypriot students are effectively unable to return.

Some lawyers have argued that it is unconstitutional for a state to turn away its own citizens. This has been rejected by the attorney general.

All passenger flights to Cyprus are prohibited by decree but the government can give exceptions for rescue flights to bring stranded Cypriots home or take back tourists.

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