UNFICYP’s Police component begins bicycle patrols in the Buffer Zone
On 17 April 2019, UNPOL officers deployed to UNFICYP organized their first bicycle patrol in the UN-administered Buffer Zone. The four-cyclist patrol, which included Dongxu Su, Acting Senior Police Adviser, started from Ledra Palace Hotel in the Mission’s Sector 2 and ended at the Ledra Street crossing point.
These patrols are intended to boost the capacity of UNPOL in making its regular rounds within the city of Nicosia with its narrow streets and old buildings. On account of the dense vegetation and narrow tracks, UNPOL officers have been monitoring these areas through foot patrols so far.
The objective is to ensure greater flexibility for UNPOL officers and enable them to have increased access to the Buffer Zone and patrol larger expanses. “This is an essential operational requirement,” said Mr. Dongxu, Acting Senior Adviser. “Additionally, it is hoped that bicycle patrols will enable community members on both sides to interact more with UNPOL officers as required. This is part of an approach that relies on community-oriented policing practices,” he stated.
The launch of bicycle patrols marks a significant expansion of an already busy station in the Mission’s Sector 2 with UNPOL officers providing support to air, vehicle and foot patrols across the Buffer Zone.