'The Guilty Will Pay' - Navy Commander's Son
Government ministers responsible for leaving dangerous explosives at the Evangelos Florakis naval base will pay for murdering Commander Andreas Ioannides, said the commander's son Nikolas Ioannides at his father's funeral in Limassol today.
"The guilty will pay for you and the other good men," said Ioannides.
He called on other naval officers to break their silence so that justice could be done.
The commander's father, Nikos Ioannides, said that his son was murdered by the government's actions.
"Despite your warnings that the explosives should be moved somewhere safe, they ignored you," he said.
Although Andreas never spoke about military matters with his family, in recent weeks, he had been very sad: "he told me, if they don't remove this death from our base, I will resign," said his father.
National Guard chief Petros Tsalikides also spoke at the funeral. Tsalikides resigned on July 11th, a few hours after the explosion on the navy base. At first he was shouted down by navy seals present at the funeral. But the commander's widow, Maria, stood by Tsalikides, and asked the mourners to hear him out.
"You never abandoned the effort, and like a worthy officer, you saved as many sailors as you could," said Tsalikides.
Sombre lines of navy officers in their dress uniforms stood silently, rigidly, to attention.
53-year-old Commander Andreas Ioannides was laid to rest on a sweltering hot July evening in Agios Arseniou Church in Limassol. He died in the explosion at the navy base on July 11th along with 11 other men.
His casket was closed and shrouded with the Cyprus and Greek flags.
Photo credit: Sigma TV