The Protection of Cyprus Ships Against Acts of Piracy and Other Unlawful Acts Law 20121 permits the use of firearms and other equipment where necessary, subject to strict safety and security controls.

On December 11 2017 the Department of Merchant Shipping announced an increase in the maximum total number of firearms that approved private ship security contractors are entitled to register under the law. On the basis of the latest experience gained through the implementation of the law and in accordance with Articles 70 and 81, the competent authority – the minister of communications and works – has increased the maximum number of firearms per approved contractor from 400 to 600.

There has been no change to the maximum ratio of firearms to guards – two firearms can still be registered for each approved private ship security guard. The change will therefore affect only contractors with more than 200 guards.


1 Law 77(I) 2012.

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