2 February 1959
Cypriot Petros Petrides revealed in 2010, in an interview with journalist Ian Cobain, that he had been detained as a schoolboy by British troops on 2 February 1959 in the town of Famagusta on the east coast of Cyprus. Petrides used to climb up on the roofs of the houses to shout slogans in support of EOKA, a Greek Cypriot guerrilla organization that was fighting to liberate the island from British occupation. He also distributed leaflets around the town but his identity was given away to investigating British soldiers by a hooded informant.
He was dragged away to a cell in a prison in the old town, the walls of which were spattered in blood. He described how his British interrogators were ‘men in their forties, stocky and well dressed, in shirt and trousers… They knew what they were doing. They were very good at their jobs.’ He told Cobain that he suspected that the men who strapped him to a bed and rubbed pepper into my lips, eye lids and private parts were British Special Branch officers, adding that ‘they would put a piece of cloth over your nose and mouth and drip water on it and you would feel like you were drowning. Just before you passed out they would stop and take the cloth off. And then they would do it again.’1
- Ian Cobain, Cruel Britannia: A Secret History of Torture, Portobello Books, London, 2012, pp. 96-99.
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