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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Cypriot Press and Other Media, 01-04-03
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From: The Republic of Cyprus Press and Information Office Server at <http://www.pio.gov.cy/>
TURKISH CYPRIOT PRESS AND OTHER MEDIA
No. 63/01 -- 3.4.01
[A] NEWS ITEMS
[B] COMMENTS AND EDITORIALS
[A] NEWS ITEMS
 Papandreou/s interview on eve of visit to Turkey Anatolia News Agency has interviewed Greek Foreign Minister GeorgePapandreou on the latest situation in Greek-Turkish relations prior to his visit to Ankara scheduled for April 5-6. Papandreou said, ``the contacts which were a big event before now have become a routine.`` The Greek Foreign Minister said it became easier for the two sides to overcome certain problems through their dialogue and added that bilateral contacts yielded several good results.
He pointed out that the Greek Parliament approved seven out of the nine agreements signed with Turkey last year. ``These agreements were signed unanimously and this is a good sign. During my visit to Ankara, we/ll assess the implementation of these agreements.
``Bilateral and multilateral relations will also be discussed during our contacts with the Turkish authorities. Confidence building measures, cooperation in Cyprus, the EU and the Balkans will be other topics of discussion,'' Papandreou said.
He said that the dialogue on confidence building measures in the Aegean will continue within the framework of good-neighbourly relations.
Papandreou told the Anatolia correspondent that positive results have been gained in the contacts between permanent representatives of Turkey and Greece in NATO.
They have decided to inform each other about the schedule of military exercises to be held so that the two countries will not stage exercises in the same region at the same time, Papandreou said. He noted that they have started to implement this decision and that the exchange of information has started.
This is a good development, Papandreou stated, noting that he thinks that following contacts will give positive results. He stressed that the political directors of the Foreign Ministries of the two countries continue their contacts.
Emphasizing that he thinks that they should not hurry to get a result, Papandreou said that they should assume a constructive attitude aiming at solution. He noted that the results that are gained should be lasting and that decisions taken in a hurry cannot be lasting.
An approach targeting to lay strong bases is more correct than an approach aiming at satisfying the public, Papandreou said.
He explained that this road will take some time and that they can face some difficulties in this road. But, they should continue and be patient to get lasting results, he added.
Papandreou emphasized that he is very pleased about the developments marked by the hotels and travel agencies in West Anatolia and Greek islands in the Aegean Sea. The one-day trips to the islands without any visa gave good results, he said.
Papandreou said that these are very pleasing developments and added that the non-governmental organizations also have intensive contacts:
The musicians, artists, doctors and local administrators are meeting each other very often, Papandreou noted.
In recent days, he said, he attended a meeting together with State Minister Yuksel Yalova, adding that the meeting was about the functioning of the West and East Thracian Local Administration Network.
Greek Foreign Minister George Papandreou said that ``the European Union membership of Cyprus is an opportunity.`` adding that the Cyprus question is ``an international issue`` and that there are United Nations and EU resolutions about this issue.
Pointing out that these resolutions suggest a frame for a possible solution, Papandreou said that the Cyprus question is a priority for the EU and that although this is not a Turkish-Greek problem, it affects the bilateral relations.
Papandreou said that the Cyprus question is an issue which is continuously put in front of Turkey in its relations with international community and that it is always on the agenda of Athens.
They can offer Cyprus as an example and they can show the good relations of Turkish Cypriots and Greek Cypriots to the world, Papandreou also said. He said that they can free themselves by freeing Cyprus.
Turkish can become an official language of the EU by the EU membership of Cyprus and Turkish Cypriots will take their place in the decision-making mechanisms of the EU, Papandreou said. He noted that this is a positive development for Turkey and that they should be constructive.
He said Turkey should look at the problem through the eyes of the future rather than of the past.
Referring to Turkey`s National Programme, for its EU candidacy, Papandreou noted that this is a beginning for Turkey as for the other EU candidate states.
He said that the programme will be taken into consideration in line with the Accession Partnership Document and be evaluated by the EU mechanisms.
This is a mutual partnership relation, Papandreou pointed out there are mutual liabilities and neither of the sides dictates anything to the other.
Papandreou stressed that Turkey`s path in Europe has vital importance for all the regional countries of the region and Greece. He thinks the EU is an opportunity to overcome historical problems like Cyprus.
He stated that Turkey has the possibilities and power to overcome the current economic crisis and that the crisis creates both difficulties and opportunities.
The domestic reforms can be implemented and the path to EU can be accelerated during this crisis, Papandreou said.
He noted that Greece wants Turkey to have a strong economy and that a Turkey, with a strong economy, is of utmost importance for regional stability.
The Greek entrepreneurs want to further improve current relations with Turkey and that they want to have intensive cooperation with their Turkish colleagues.(.)
They deserve the point reached in the relations to the two nations, Papandreou noted. He stated that they are only dealing with the details and that he gets warm messages from Turkish nation.
Turks whom he comes across with during his visits, airports, and hotels show interest in him and request him to continue the path started by himself and Foreign Minister Ismail Cem, Papandreou said.
He added that he is looking forward to visit Ankara.
 Denktash/s press conference According to Bayrak Radio Denktash held a news conference (2.4.01) andcommented on the bicommunal festival held at the Ledra Palace Hotel on 31st March and on the interview given by President Clerides to the ``Turkish Daily News'' newspaper.
Denktash recounted that in a statement to the Greek Cypriot media one day before the festival, the leader of the EDON youth organization said that the festival is aimed at conveying the message that the Turkish and Greek Cypriot progressives can live in peace, within the framework of the anti- occupation struggle. Denktash said: I would like to be sure that if the goal of the festival was known, the people on our side would not have been so gullible. They want to exploit us and they are exploiting us. They are constantly forming a front against us.
Recalling that his so-called ``government'' and the ``foreign ministry'' are criticized for objecting to such contacts from time to time, Denktash said that the authorities who are aware that such contacts are being used against us are forced to adopt certain measures. Denktash noted that the Turkish Cypriot side is the side that sincerely favours peace, but this is not tantamount to being deceived by the Greek Cypriots.
Denktash also responded to President Clerides/s statement to the ``Turkish Daily News'' published in Ankara (1.4.01) and the excerpt carried in the Sunday Mail. Clerides is trying to deceive those who are not familiar with the Cyprus problem through the lie that the Greek Cypriot side made a sacrifice and accepted the equality of the two sides although the Turkish Cypriots are a minority in Cyprus, Denktash stressed, adding that the Turkish Cypriots' equality is cited in the 1960 agreements and these agreements grant the Turkish Cypriots the rights of equality and sovereignty. Denktash declared that Clerides should cease trying to claim ownership over Cyprus by hanging on to lies.
Denktash added that in his statement, Clerides said: Let the Turkish Cypriots have a region in the north. Let them live under their administration in that region. Let the administrators in that region consist of only Turkish Cypriots, so that we can make peace.
Those who are not familiar with the Cyprus problem can interpret these remarks by Clerides as very warm and generous, Denktash said.
 Australian envoy meets Turkish Cypriots According to HALKIN SESI (3.4.01) Australia/s Special Envoy for Cyprus JimShort, who is in Cyprus for contacts, visited yesterday the political parties CLP, DP, RTP in the occupied areas and the Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash.
In a statement after the meetings, Jim Short said that he is visiting the island in order to be informed on the latest developments of the Cyprus problem.
Adding that it is the first time that he visits the island in his new role he said that he will also carry out contacts in Ankara, Athens, Brussels, London, Washington and New York and that he supports UN Secretary General/s efforts.
He continued: ``We will do our best so that the sides come together and talk. We will continue our struggle for a solution under UN auspices. We have not come with a magical solution; our aim is to listen to all the sides. I hope that our discussions will be useful.'' Mr. Short was accompanied by the Chairman of the Cyprus Desk of the Australian Foreign Affairs Ministry and the Australian Ambassador in Cyprus Frank Ingruber.
 Azeri commanders visit occupied Cyprus BIRLIK (3.4.01) reports that an Azeri delegation consisting of retired armycommanders arrives today in the occupied areas as a guest of the ``Security Forces Retired officers Association''.
The Azeri delegation, headed by retired Major-general Ebullfez Kasimov, will meet with the Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash, the so-called prime minister Dervis Eroglu and the so-called foreign affairs and defence minister Tahsin Ertugruloglu.
The delegation leaves on Monday 9, May 2001.
 Death of one of TMT founders KIBRIS (3.4.01) reports that one of the founders of the Turkish CypriotTerrorist Organisation TMT - (Turkish Resistance Organization) Kemal Tanrisevdi died yesterday in the occupied area after a short illness.
Tanrisevdi, who was appointed administrative Attache to the Turkish Consulate General in Nicosia on 30 October 1956, was a Turkish Foreign Ministry diplomat.
Tanrisevdi, together with Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash and late Dr. Burhan Nalbantoglu established the TMT in November, 1957 at his house in Aglandja Nicosia.
After the 1974 Turkish invasion and occupation Tanrisevdi arrived in the occupied area and lived there on a permanent basis.
In a statement,Turkish Cypriot leader, Rauf Denktash praised the work done by Tanrisevdi and expressed his condolences. He said that with the death of Tanrisevdi, a chapter of history was closed.
[B] COMMENTS AND EDITORIALS
 Turkish columnist warns against possibility of Cyprus/ accession to EU in 2003Istanbul RADIKAL (21.3.01) Column by Murat Yetkin: "Cyprus Question Fuels Anxieties".
With the EU National Programme, which was unveiled on 19 March, Turkey has left behind a critical landmark in its quest for integration with Europe, a crusade which started more than 30 years ago. Although the programme is criticized on the grounds that it is vague, the mere declaration by Turkey, being ruled by a tripartite coalition government, of its National Programme at a time when political and economic troubles in the country climaxed should be seen as a significant development. It symbolizes Ankara's steadfastness in its strategy aimed at achieving integration with Europe in spite of its internal paradoxes.
This persistence is not confined only to Turkey's quest for joining Europe. It also demonstrates that Turkey, again in spite of its internal paradoxes, is successfully maintaining its political, economic and social tissue, and that the official line, described by Ataturk as the struggle for "joining the ranks of developed countries", is still being zealously pursued.
"This programme shows the steps that Turkey should take even if it is eventually unable to attain its goal to join the EU," said Deputy Prime Minister Mesut Yilmaz, giving voice to the common opinion of people, who, irrespective of their political inclinations, sincerely believe that Turkey should achieve these targets. Indeed, these targets should not be missed.
It seems that the process will get up steam in line with the Turkish proverb which goes "A caravan is formed during a journey." The rest will ride on the political bargaining between Ankara and Brussels.
Public debates, both during formulation and disclosure of the National Programme, have centered around the use of Kurdish as a language for broadcasting and education, as if it was the sole criterion for Turkey's accession to the EU. Yet, it was evident that debates on diplomatic platforms had focused not on Kurdish, but rather on two other issues since the Helsinki Document dated 10 December 1999:
- The civil authority's control on the military and a general restructuring of the political system, and - Cyprus' future.
Both a far-reaching reformation of the political system ranging from the minimum quantity of votes that a political party must win in the general elections to the political parties law, and relations between politicians and the military is a domain closed to direct interventions due to different approaches adopted in every country. Besides, it requires a long- term approach.
Yet, this is not the case for Cyprus. The EU is directly concerned with the de facto situation in Cyprus which has been continuing since 1974, because:
1- The EU treats the ``South Cyprus government'', which has not been officially recognised by Turkey, as a candidate country on an equal footing with Turkey.
2- The ``Turkish Republic of North Cyprus'', whose legitimate rights are recognized only by Turkey, is seen by many EU countries as "Cyprus territory under Turkish occupation."
3- Thus, it seems that the Cyprus question will probably hinder Turkey's accession to the EU.
"The Cyprus question is the most serious issue. It causes us to lose sleep, " said an influential figure in the cabinet.
For, the Cyprus dilemma is not confined to this analysis.
Assistant Secretary General of the EU Commission, Brian Crowe, was vested with the responsibility to watch developments related to Cyprus, during a consultative meeting held last week in Stockholm, the capital city of Sweden which is the current president of the EU. Crowe is a national of the United Kingdom.
Michael Leigh, also British, is responsible for EU's candidacy files for Turkey, Cyprus, Romania, Bulgaria and Malta.
Meanwhile, the equilibrium in the UN's initiative, which Turkey has referred to in its National Programme, is steadily changing. According to recent reports, the United Kingdom's special envoy to Cyprus, David Hannay, is increasing his influence as the Republican Party, which is controlling the White House, does not take a keen interest in the Cyprus question.
Recent reports even indicate that the EU's Council of Ministers has informally left the responsibility for taking initiatives about the Cyprus issue to Hannay, and thus to London.
You do not have to wonder why the United Kingdom has come to the fore. It was one of the three guarantor states in Cyprus until the military operation in 1974. At present, the United Kingdom's Akrotiri and Dhekelia bases in Cyprus are the largest foreign military bases in the Middle East - West Mediterranean area.
According to a plan, which has been highlighted during behind-the-scene discussions, membership negotiations with the Cypriot government will be concluded in June 2001. The Cyprus question, which will be shelved for a certain period, will be brought up again during the Danish presidency in the second half of 2002. The Cypriot government's membership will be placed on the agenda during the presidency of Greece, which will take over the rotating presidency in January 2003, in exchange for relinquishment of North Cyprus.
Unless Turkey formulates a new policy vis-a-vis the Cyprus issue in order to change the present situation, it will either have to put up with accession of the Greek Cypriot government to the EU in 2003, or face a provocation which could put its own accession process in jeopardy.
Those who are not aware of, or want to ignore this, and the EU's opponents are happy. Yet, those who are aware of it lose sleep.
 AVRUPA: ``Ankara has burned us''
In a commentary AVRUPA newspaper (3.4.01) under the title ``A letter from Avrupa'', says that Ankara and the supporters of her policy in the occupied areas are responsible for all the pain the Turkish Cypriots suffer. Under the title ``Ankara has burned us'' the paper says, inter alia, the following:
``All those who support the policy of Ankara, Denktash and Eroglu, are responsible for all these disasters we are going through. ...No one was in the mood for making April Fool`s jokes. .What is the reason for this? It is our relations with Turkey. Do not listen to the proposals of those who do not stress that Turkey has brought us to this situation. Ask the supporters of Denktash and Eroglu who are complaining about their economic problems:
`Why are you complaining. We have gone bankrupt because you gave your votes to them.` ... Is their a light of hope now? No there is not! In the politics there is not! Turkey has convicted us to a non-solution (of the Cyprus problem). Turkey closes our way towards the EU. There is no hope for the economy! ... Ankara not only does not give us extra money, but she is not even sending us as much as she used to! Even if she gives money, what will finally happen? Who will be saved? The economy is dependent on politics. Absolutely no concept will be useful, unless we free ourselves from being Turkey's sheep for sacrifice.''
From the Republic of Cyprus Press and Information Office (PIO) Server at http://www.pio.gov.cy/