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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Press and Other Media, 02-05-22

Cyprus Press and Information Office: Turkish Cypriot Press Review Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Republic of Cyprus Press and Information Office Server at <http://www.pio.gov.cy/>

TURKISH PRESS AND OTHER MEDIA No. 95/02 22.05.02

[A] NEWS ITEMS

  • [01] Statements by the Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktas before and after meeting President Clerides in the framework of the talks for a solution to the Cyprus problem
  • [02] The Turkish Sismik -1 Research vessel will violate the continental shelf of the northern, occupied part of Cyprus
  • [03] Vladimir Jirinovski will visit the occupied areas of Cyprus
  • [04] Ali Seylani is re-elected as chairman of KTAMS
  • [05] The Turkish Cypriot press refers to the destruction of 4.500 weapons, which belonged to the Republic of Cyprus
  • [06] Sukru Sina Gurel speaks of a crisis in the Eastern Mediterranean if Cyprus acceds to the EU
  • [07] The Turkish Foreign Minister will pay an illegal visit to the occupied areas
  • [08] Lord David Hannay supports a settlement of the Cyprus problem by the end of June
  • [09] TUSIAD's Chairman said that time for Turkey is running out regarding the EU and Cyprus issues
  • [B] COMMENTS AND EDITORIALS

  • [10] Sami Kohen assesses the results of the visit to Cyprus by the U.N. Secretary-General
  • [11] Serhat Incirli: "Denktas supporters as well seek asylum in the UK''
  • [12] Mehmet Ali Birand believes that Turkey will give the Greek Cypriots no peace if Cyprus becomes EU member

  • [A] NEWS ITEMS

    [01] Statements by the Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktas before and after meeting President Clerides in the framework of the talks for a solution to the Cyprus problem

    KIBRIS (22.05.02) reports that the Turkish Cypriot leader, Rauf Denktas and President Glavcos Clerides met today within the framework of the direct Cyprus talks.

    Before he left the occupied areas for the meeting, Mr Denktas said: "Let us all be intelligent and establish a new and good partnership between two entities".

    A reporter pointed out that the Government Spokesman Mr Papapetrou described as illogical the opinion that by using the expression "governance" instead of "Constitutional issues" the UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan accepted the position of the Turkish side regarding the "necessity" of the sides' discussing the issue of the so-called "separate sovereignty" during the direct talks. Mr Denktas responded by recalling Ataturk's remark that rights not based on sovereignty are not rights.

    Mr Denktas added: "We and the Greek Cypriots were shareholders in sovereignty in 1960. When they denied our shares, we were forced to do a lot of things for 39 years to save our rights, and we did".

    Mr Denktas alleged that after a harsh struggle, the Turkish Cypriots gained their sovereignty and consolidated the "Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus" . He added: "This republic will not disappear because some people say it does not exist or that it is illogical. We must all be intelligent and establish a new and good partnership between the two entities".

    A reporter referred to the Greek Cypriot press reports that the Greek Cypriot document on missing persons is ready and asked if the issue is on today's agenda. Mr Denktas said that if the Greek Cypriots submit the document, the issue will be placed on the agenda.

    The paper writes that Mr Denktas also made statements after meeting President Clerides on the same day.

    Mr Denktas said that he would come together with President Clerides at 10.00 a.m. on Friday, and stated that the issue of the missing persons was not taken up in the meeting.

    Noting that the talks on the matter continued, Mr Denktas added that they are trying to speed up the talks. When asked if there is hope, Mr Denktas said: "We are not saying that there is no hope, we are trying".

    When reminded about the statement of Defence Minister, Socrates Hasikos who said that "the National Guard has taken all sorts of measures for any crisis including clash to be caused by Turkey if the island joins the EU without the solution of Cyprus problem", the Turkish Cypriot leader said: "If they have such a will, it is up to them. We do not have such a goal neither does Turkey. Yet we said that there could be a crisis if the activity to admit the Greek Cypriot side to the EU under the false name of 'Cyprus' continues without reaching a common agreement despite the rights of Turkey stemming from the 1960 treaty. We said 'crisis', not 'clash'. Their referring to clash shows what they have on their mind. I hope they will not make such a mistake, there is no need for that".

    [02] The Turkish Sismik -1 Research vessel will violate the continental shelf of the northern, occupied part of Cyprus

    KIBRIS (22.05.02) reports that the Turkish Sismik -1 Research vessel will visit the occupied areas in order to conduct seismic researches in the Karpass Peninsula. The paper notes that the vessel would be at Anamur, southern Turkey, on 23 May. The researches will last about 10 or 15 days.

    [03] Vladimir Jirinovski will visit the occupied areas of Cyprus

    KIBRISLI (22.05.02) reports that vice president of the Russian parliament, Vladimir Jirinovski will visit the occupied areas of Cyprus as a guest of the illegal American University of Kyrenia (GAU), a delegation of which is on a visit in Russia within the framework of a so-called "international advertising programme".

    The paper writes that the date and other details regarding the visit of Mr Jirinovski to the occupied areas will be made known later. However, according to a statement issued by GAU, the Russian political leader expressed his full support to the so-called "mutual cultural influence of the international identity and the world civilizations programme", which is taking place in the occupied areas.

    Furthermore, the statement notes that students of the illegal GAU could visit Moscow within the framework of an exchange programme between the Russian capital and the occupied city of Kyrenia.

    Serhat Akpinar, vice president of the broad of trustees of GAU, Vahid Juvarov, district director for Russia and Oleg Akhtassov, representative of Russia, were participating in the delegation of GAU, which met with Mr Jirinovski.

    [04] Ali Seylani is re-elected as chairman of KTAMS

    KIBRIS (22.05.02) reports that Ali Seylani was elected yesterday as chairman of the new administrative council of KTAMS, trade union of the Turkish Cypriot so-called "public servants".

    The new administrative council was elected at the 29th general assembly of KTAMS, which took place last Saturday.

    [05] The Turkish Cypriot press refers to the destruction of 4.500 weapons, which belonged to the Republic of Cyprus

    KIBRIS (22.05.02) reports that the destruction of the weapons of the Republic of Cyprus, which were kept since 1972 at the Nicosia International Airport, was completed yesterday.

    The last portion of the weapons, bought in 1972 from Czechoslovakia by President Makarios to be used against the illegal EOKA B organization, was scrapped yesterday the presence of major general Ja Ha Hwang, commander of the United Nations Peace-Keeping Force in Cyprus and Nicos Koshis, Justice and Public Order Minister.

    Mr Koshis said the destruction of the weapons was decided within the framework of disarmament and the efforts for finding a solution to the Cyprus problem.

    Major general Hwang expressed his satisfaction because of the destruction of the weapons.

    [06] Sukru Sina Gurel speaks of a crisis in the Eastern Mediterranean if Cyprus acceds to the EU

    Ankara TRT 2 Television (21/05/02) carried a live studio interview of about 30 minutes with Turkish State Minister Sukru Sina Gurel during Utku Sensoy's "45-Minutes" program.

    Sensoy starts by asking if any progress has been made in the Cyprus talks conducted by Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktas and Greek Cypriot leader Glavcos Clerides. Gurel says: "For now, the talks have not led anywhere because a common approach between the two sides that can lead the talks somewhere has not been achieved. Or rather, the Greek Cypriot side is not trying to reach an accord; on the contrary it intends to turn the Turkish Cypriots into a minority once again -- actually, I should not say once again because it has never happened. Consequently, it is very difficult to achieve an accord when there are two basically different approaches. The Turkish Cypriots are justifiably after equal sovereignty, while the Greek Cypriots want to give them not equality but minority rights."

    Sensoy says: "Given this situation, it is impossible then to talk about a June process that should start in 10 days time, isn't it?" Gurel replies that it is extremely difficult, adding: "As Mr. Denktas has said, the Cyprus issue is not an issue that should be discussed or resolved according to the schedule of certain circles. The Cyprus issue has its own dynamics. There are two peoples in Cyprus, and the representatives of these two peoples will discuss the issue with their own free will until they find common ground."

    Asked what crisis can erupt if the Greek Cypriots join the EU before an accord is reached in Cyprus, Gurel replies: "When a crisis erupts, it is difficult to say where it can lead to. The circles that are interested in Cyprus, especially the EU, should realize that if they lead the issue in that direction, if they eventually declare that they are admitting the Greek Cypriot side as a full EU member, believing that they are putting an end to the Cyprus problem, it will not be the end they imagine. The EU should realize that if it does that, it will be positioning itself against Turkey, and it will be creating a serious confrontational situation in Cyprus. In that case, of course, Turkey will not abandon the Turkish Cypriots, it never has. Consequently, the EU will have created a serious crisis in eastern Mediterranean."

    Sensoy charges that the EU has been "sabotaging" the Cyprus process and asks what its aims can be. Gurel replies that he thinks the EU expects Turkey and the "TRNC" to surrender. He stresses that this will not happen. He also denies that Turkey's membership depends on the solution of the Cyprus problem in line with Greek and Greek Cypriot desires. Gurel points out that the EU is not mentioning Turkey in its 10-year plans and is not starting negotiations with it. "It is impossible to say that the EU is getting ready to grant full membership to Turkey in the near future," he asserts.

    Prompted by Sensoy, Gurel states that if the EU fails to give Turkey a date for the start of accession talks by the end of this year and if Cyprus is admitted as a member in 2004 as the representative of the whole of Cyprus, then Ankara "will have the right to review its relations with the EU."

    Sensoy then asks what Turkey will do if it is given a timetable for joining the EU but if it is asked in return to pressure the pseudostate for a solution. Gurel says that Turkey and Cyprus -- where a political solution has been reached -- should join the EU simultaneously. "Any other formula will not satisfy us or the Turkish Cypriots," he states.

    On the relations with Greece, Sensoy asks if Ankara believes Greece is failing to take the steps necessary to promote a solution in Cyprus. Gurel replies: "I do not believe that Greece has changed its policy toward Turkey or Cyprus by one iota, despite the appearance of the recent detente atmosphere that has been created." He recalls that "the head of the terrorist organization that was out to destroy our unity was caught in a Greek Embassy. Had we done this in connection with a neighbor, had we protected the head of a terrorist organization that wanted to divide that neighbor's unity, had we supported that terrorist organization, the whole world would have been up in arms. Nobody would have forgotten that for 100 years. We, however, in one day and with great magnanimity, forgot what Greece did. We took their hand extended in peace. Then there was the earthquake and the rapprochement appeared to advance further within the framework of that development. It appeared to advance. What happened in essence? Nothing; no concrete progress was made. Can we say that our views with Greece are coming closer together in connection with the Aegean problems? We cannot. Can we say that we have reached a common view with Greece regarding Cyprus? No, we cannot.

    "Actually it was Greece that distorted the EU stand on Cyprus in the first place, that pushed the EU to look into the Cyprus problem before handling the EU expansion process. It was Greece that blackmailed the EU by saying either you admit Cyprus by completely ignoring the Turkish Cypriot side, or I will sabotage the expansion process, that is, the membership of Poland, Hungary, and the Czech Republic. It is as a result of this blackmail that the EU became so helplessly entangled in the Cyprus problem. In other words, it is impossible to speak about a change of stand on Greece's part.

    "Is it possible to say that Greece is considering a security partnership with Turkey within the EU? It is not. We decided together with the other EU members and with the other NATO members the ways in which we could contribute to the European Security and Defense Policy. It is Greece that objects to that and that rejects this formula because it gives partial right of say to Turkey even though it is not an EU member.

    "I find it difficult to understand how one can speak about Greece's goodwill or rapprochement regarding Turkey."

    Gurel recalls that as Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit said in 1997, "Turkey attaches great importance to the /TRNC/s/ sovereignty and security, and it does not view the "TRNC/s" security separately from its own. Everybody should realize our determination and create scenarios accordingly."

    [07] The Turkish Foreign Minister will pay an illegal visit to the occupied areas

    KIBRIS (22/05/02) reports that the Turkish Foreign Affairs Minister, Mr Ismail Cem, will arrive in the occupied areas around noon at 1st of June.

    It is announced that Mr Ismail Cem will meet with the Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktas in the afternoon and in the evening he will attend the graduation ceremony of the "Girne (Kyrenia) America University", where he will be the special quest and will be awarded with the honorary doctorate degree.

    [08] Lord David Hannay supports a settlement of the Cyprus problem by the end of June

    According to KIBRIS (22/05/02) the British Special Envoy on Cyprus, Lord David Hannay, in a speech at the London Europe Society, supported UN Secretary-General's call to the Greek and Turkish Cypriot leaders to reach an agreement by the end of June.

    Lord David Hannay said: "The negotiations for a settlement have reached a critical stage. Last week's visit to Cyprus by the UN Secretary-General brought a very welcome sense of direction and urgency to a process that has risked getting bogged down, like so many attempts before this one.

    During his visit Esteemed Kofi Annan said that agreement could and should be reached by the end-June target date the leaders of both sides had earlier set. Annan has the full backing of the Security Council and certainly of Britain in his statement".

    [09] TUSIAD's Chairman said that time for Turkey is running out regarding the EU and Cyprus issues

    KIBRIS (22/05/02) reports that the Chairman of the Turkish Industrialists and Businessmen's Association (TUSIAD), Mr Tuncay Ozilhan, in an opening speech at the 4th Congress of Technology, said that EU and Cyprus issues are very urgent and important for Turkey, adding that the time for Turkey is running out on both issues.

    Adding that it is a precondition that effective steps should be taken in the Cyprus problem Ozilham concluded: "The settlement of the Cyprus problem is important for Turkey's interests."


    [B] COMMENTS AND EDITORIALS

    [10] Sami Kohen assesses the results of the visit to Cyprus by the U.N. Secretary-General

    Istanbul Milliyet newspaper (17/05/02) publishes a commentary by Sami Kohen under the title: "Was UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan successful in his latest visit to Cyprus?" The full text of the commentary is as follows: "The first question that comes to one's mind after UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan's recent visit to Cyprus is summed up in the headline of this article: Was Annan successful in his visit?

    In order to assess this question correctly, we must first recall the things that Annan was thinking and the things that he said upon his arrival on the island.

    In Annan's words, his aim was to accelerate the deadlocked talks between Rauf Denktas and Glafcos Clerides and to encourage the two leaders to reach an agreement as early as possible. Annan specifically indicated that a miracle must not be expected. Moreover, Annan did not come with a "plan" to propose to the two sides or to urge them to accept this plan nor did he have a magic wand in his hand...

    Therefore, what happened when Annan visited the island? Well, the deadlock in the Cyprus talks is fading thanks to the efforts exerted by Annan. The two sides accepted holding the talks for solving the problems with a new approach.

    All these may initially be viewed as a minor success. Yet, this is an important development on the Cyprus platform. Therefore, it is wrong to say that Kofi Annan left the island empty-handed...

    The UN Secretary-General yesterday disclosed the points where he did not gain any results. He said that the difference of views is continuing between the two sides from the perspective of "time and content." Annan's view, like the view of all the pertinent parties, was that a visible progress will be made and that a framework agreement will come into being by the end of June this year.

    Annan exerted great efforts in this regard, but he failed to obtain a definite promise from Denktas regarding the matter. It is now clearly obvious that the dialogue will continue between Denktas and Clerides after June under the present circumstances. It is difficult to say definitely as to whether or not an agreement will be reached during this extended period. Annan deemed it sufficient to say that an agreement may be reached during this period if progress is achieved regarding the content and if the necessary will is displayed in this regard.

    Meanwhile, what is this "content" all about? Sovereignty--or "status," as stated by Denktas yesterday--is the main issue for Denktas. That is, the Turkish Cypriot side wants the reaching of an agreement on this "general" issue (that is, the adoption of the views of the Turkish Cypriots by the Greek Cypriots) first and thereafter the taking up of "specific" issues such as properties, security, refugees, and other similar issues.

    Glafkos Clerides, for his part, maintains a contrary view. Clerides believes that an agreement must first be reached on the aforementioned issues and argues that as a matter of fact, the state structure (or umbrella) will come into being in light of these issues.

    This is the behaviour of the two sides in the dialogue that has been going on between the two sides for at least for four months. To tell the truth, this is the reason behind the deadlock in the talks...

    UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan tried to "rescue" the talks process by bringing the two opposite views closer to each other. According to Annan, the practicable way to do this is follows: Henceforth the two sides must discuss both the "status" issue and the "specific" issues. According to this practicable way, the two sides must even reach unanimity of views, by June if possible, on "core issues," as Annan put it, such as properties, refugees, and security. The main agreement may be reached (also within this year) during the talks that will continue after June if unanimity of views is reached on the core issues.

    This means the following: The Cyprus talks had deviated from their track. The UN Secretary-General is now placing the talks process on a "double track" system. The two sides will henceforth take up the "status" issue proposed by Rauf Denktas as well as the "core issues" demanded by Clerides.

    Can a result come out from all these? Every type of talks method was used with regard to the Cyprus issue in the past quarter of a century. Kofi Annan is not introducing a new method, but he is introducing a new approach (even if it may be regarded as a nuance).

    Meanwhile, Denktas is pleased with the fact that he explained to Annan his position from all its angles and with the fact that Annan showed understanding to him regarding the matter. However, we must bear in mind that the UN Secretary-General (and the United Nations) expect the Turkish Cypriot side to henceforth take up the "specific issues" with a new understanding and to display flexibility regarding the issue. That is, all eyes will once again turn to Denktas in the coming weeks...

    [11] Serhat Incirli: "Denktas supporters as well seek asylum in the UK''

    Serhat Incirli, writing in Afrika (22/05/02), says that one of Denktas/ supporters and nationalist National People's Movement (NPM) member has recently sought asylum in the UK.

    In his article, Incirli does not disclose the name of the person, but he says that if one goes through the names listed among the founding members of the NPM, he could find the name of the asylum seeker . Incirli further reports that the asylum seeker in question also carries the passport of the Republic of Cyprus.

    He concludes by saying in an ironic manner that ''not only the traitors, but the supporters of Denktas as well run away and seek asylum, among them an ultra nationalist Grey Wolf member who is in custody in the UK awaiting for the decision of the UK authorities about his request for asylum''.

    [12] Mehmet Ali Birand believes that Turkey will give the Greek Cypriots no peace if Cyprus becomes EU member

    Turkish Daily News (22/05/02) publishes the following commentary by Mehmet Ali Birand:

    I cannot make up my mind whether this calls for going crazy or for shedding tears.

    Everybody is talking about everything. Even the most unnecessary topics are being discussed. Time is being spent with election scenarios based on pure speculation. Yet, no one asks a proper question about the Cyprus issue. No one asks the question: "What is happening to us?"

    The Cyprus issue, with which Turkey has been preoccupied over the past five decades, an issue which, if it remains unsolved, has the potential to poison Turkey's future over the next five decades as well, having been left to two leaders who spent the last 50 years struggling with one another. The issue has been left to them to solve on their own, personal initiative.

    On one hand, there is Rauf Denktas who -- justifiably or not -- lives in the past, basing his value judgements on incidents that took place 30 years ago, doing his strategic calculations in ways that no longer have any value.

    On the other hand, there is Glafcos Clerides who still cannot come to terms with the stark realities that stand right in front of him, a man who, rather than building a new Cyprus, makes plans aimed at tying up the hands of the other by making use of the opportunity current international conditions have provided him with.

    Let them take no offence. I do not mean any disrespect to them. However, they are living in the vicious circle in their small worlds. Yet, the problem that has been left to them to be resolved will have a direct bearing on Turkey, a country with a population of 70 million, which could become a real power in the region and on Greece, a European Union member who has started taking the most important strides towards getting rich.

    This is an issue as vital as that.

    If this problem cannot be solved now, Turkey will, in order to be a full member of the EU, have to make concessions in Cyprus that would be three times or four times more extensive than it would now. Since Turkey would find it impossible to make those kinds of concessions, it would have to watch the EU from the outside. The door leading to full membership would have been closed.

    In such a case, it will not be possible to attain the desired rapprochement with Greece, or to build a climate of peace in the Aegean. The more the tension continues, the greater will be the burden military spending poses on the national economy. In other words, it will be harder for Turkey to become affluent. Rather than being a regional power, it will have to content itself with serving as the United States' gendarme.

    If no solution can be found in Cyprus, Greece and the Greek Cypriots too will suffer. In such a case, Turkey will have to react strongly, suspending its relations with the EU and giving the Greek Cypriots no peace. Turkey will not merely look on as the Greek Cypriots eat a slice of the EU pie in comfort and become all the richer. Tension would increase.

    That would inevitably be reflected in Turkey-Greece relations. The climate of peace in the Aegean would come to an end. There would be a toughening up reminiscent of the old days. The Greek economy would be affected. Greek tourism would falter. Part of the funds being used for the switch to the euro system would be channelled into defence spending once again. Prior to the 2004 Olympic games, black shadows would begin to scud over the region.

    Even half of the possibilities I have mentioned in this article should cause the Turkish and Greek officials to lose sleep. Ankara and Athens should roll up their sleeves immediately and intervene in the situation, salvaging Cyprus from the hands of Denktas and Clerides.

    Turkish and Greek foreign ministers, Ismail Cem and George Papandreou, have devoted time to visiting the Middle East together. They have made a contribution to a solution, and they have been congratulated for it. In a highly successful manner, Ismail Cem has tackled the Caucasus issue. He brought the Armenians and the Azerbaijanis together. He has been applauded for it.

    Well, dear friends, if Ankara and Athens manage to extend a hand to places so far away, why do they turn their backs on Cyprus, a place where the vital interests of Turkey and Greece are entirely at stake?

    Why are they watching the developments from a distance? Is it because this is an issue which entails a high political risk and the ruling parties in these two countries are not willing to take such a risk for the time being? Does assigning this task to Denktas and Clerides serve their interests?

    How can these leaders not see that if the Cyprus issue meets with an "accident" due to this neglect, they will have plunged their two countries' long-term interests into jeopardy?

    There is one point that the prime ministers, deputy prime ministers and the foreign ministers that govern Ankara and Athens must know:

    The Turkish and Greek public will be grabbing you by the lapels if, due to domestic political considerations you fail to devote to Cyprus the time it requires, if you fail to treat this issue with the care it necessitates, if you fail to put this process to good use by establishing a dialogue between the two capital cities as you should.

    You would be held responsible by our children and our grandchildren. You can use patriotic and heroic rhetoric all you want. You can shift the blame to the other side all you want. You will not be able to convince us. This is because some of us do know that the gap between the two sides is not unbridgeable and that with a little time, effort and goodwill this problem -- which has exasperated us and which is going to dim our future -- can be solved.

    I know that Cyprus does not have strategic importance. No one should come up and try to teach a lesson on this issue. I believe that if the situation remains as it is the Turkish Cypriot side will become all the more impoverished and that, when this happens, we will truly lose Cyprus.

    Similarly, I know that if the Greek Cypriots fail to take the few steps needed to solve the problem today, the Greek Cypriots will never be able to see the northern part of the island again.

    Come, let us, all of us together, be realistic rather than doing harm to all of us. Let us rid ourselves of absurd nationalistic slogans and clear the path of these two countries.

    Just for once, let us act by using logic, calculating our interests well, as true Europeans, rather than with emotions as Greeks and Turks tend to do.

    EG/


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