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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Press and Other Media, 02-08-12

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. 152/02 10-12.08.02

[A] NEWS ITEMS

  • [01] Eighty-six NGO's in occupied areas Seeks Solution on the Cyprus problem by end of 2002
  • [02] Denktas assesses court ruling against Levent and Ener
  • [03] Angolemli and Talat criticizes Denktas
  • [04] Protests against the imprisonment of Sener Levent and Memduh Ener continue
  • [05] The journalists of AFRIKA and their families are threatened
  • [06] YENIDUZEN says Denktas is panicked
  • [07] State Minister Kemal Dervis announces his resignation
  • [08] Masum Turker is appointed new State Minister responsible for the Economy
  • [09] Comments on Dervis' resignation
  • [10] The New Democracy Party merged with the Nationalistic Justice Party
  • [11] Enver Emin Resigns From National Revival Leadership
  • [B] COMMENTARIES, EDITORIALS AND ANALYSIS

  • [12] AFRIKA: "Sentenced to prison"

  • [A] NEWS ITEMS

    [01] Eighty-six NGO's in occupied areas seek solution to the Cyprus problem by end of 2002

    The front page of KIBRIS (10.08.02) under the banner headlines, "Civil organizations seek: solution and EU" reports that a total of 86 nongovernmental organizations (NGO's) in the occupied areas have announced that they support the talks process aimed at finding a solution to the Cyprus problem as well as the EU membership of the new partnership state to be established following a solution. The NGO's also announced that the Cyprus problem should be resolved before the end of the year 2002. The NGO's then called on Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktas and President Clerides to mutually play a constructive role in the ongoing talks process.

    The joint vision of the Turkish Cypriot civilian community for the Cyprus solution and for EU membership formulated by the Turkish Cypriot NGO's was announced to the public at a news conference held at Saray Hotel in occupied Nicosia yesterday. Those who signed the joint vision were also announced at the news conference. The text of the joint vision will be opened to the signatures of NGO's. The news conference began with a family photograph. The chairmen and representatives of the NGO's that signed the joint vision were present at the news conference.

    Ali Erel, Chairman of the Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Commerce, addressing the news conference, said that 86 NGO's are in agreement over the need for a speedy solution in Cyprus and over the common denominator of EU membership. Erel said that they have arrived at the current moment as a result of a two-month work period, stressing that the declaration, which reflects the views of the majority, does not comprise a minority status for the Turkish Cypriots, nor does it call for the rejection of their rights. Calling on the politicians to pay attention to the message conveyed by the joint vision, Erel noted that there is a short period left till the end of the year and that a very serious opportunity might be missed in the solution of the Cyprus problem. He continued: "We do not want to consider the hellish scenario in the event a solution is not reached". Erel said that their goal is to attain what has been achieved in the world, in Turkey, and in the free areas of Cyprus.

    The various sections of the text of the joint vision were read by various NGO representatives. The joint vision notes that a Cyprus solution and EU membership are necessary for resolving the problems of the Turkish Cypriots, adding that the lack of a Cyprus solution adversely affects the Turkish Cypriots and causes mass migration. Pointing out that the Cyprus issue should be resolved before the end of 2002 and that the conditions now are more conducive than ever, the joint vision noted that the Turkish Cypriots and the people of Turkey will suffer the most if a solution is not reached by the end of the year and if Cyprus accedes to the EU unilaterally.

    The joint vision described the main criteria for a solution and explained the need for a single legal international entity and for effective legislative, executive, and judicial organs that will be able to conduct relations with the EU. The vision also noted the need to resolve the property problem in Cyprus in a manner that will prevent new mass migrations. Noting that a Cyprus solution and EU membership will advance the Turkish Cypriots toward a bright future, the joint vision charged that the countless proposals made by the NGO's for structural reforms were disregarded by the various "governments". The vision continued: "We should not renounce our demand for self rule, nor should we surrender to the Greek Cypriots our political equality and our founding partnership rights granted to us by the 1960 Cyprus Republic agreements in a bid to overcome the current difficulties". The vision went on to stress that the Turkish Cypriot side should show to the entire world through its actions and approach that it is the side that is interested in an agreement.

    The joint vision noted that adopting, as a goodwill gesture, measures that will facilitate contacts between the two communities on the island will help the two peoples that will sign the agreement to get to know one another. A call was also made to the EU, the United Nations, and the United States, which are effective in the Cyprus issue, to treat the two sides equally. The vision further stressed the extreme sensitivity shown not to disrupt the talks process, which will determine the future of the Turkish Cypriots.

    Erel then replied to reporters' questions. Upon being asked about their next goal, Erel said that every organization will continue its activities, but that they will try to inform the entire world and Turkey about the joint vision they have signed. He explained their target as joining forces with the NGO's set up in Turkey toward EU membership. He concluded by saying that the text of the joint vision will be open to signatures as of yesterday.

    [02] Denktas assesses court ruling against Levent and Ener

    According to KIBRIS (10.08.02) the Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktas, referring to the imprisonment of journalist Sener Levent, has said that the reason for passing such a sentence should be very serious, adding that, therefore, this ruling is very distressing for the pseudostate.

    Replying to reporters' questions during a meeting today, Denktas assessed the prison sentences Sener Levent and Memduh Ener received because of an article published in AVRUPA. He said: "Why is this decision distressing? It is distressing because there are writers who violate the laws, who disregard the principles of honour and dignity, who bad-mouth Turkey and our soldiers who safeguard the 'state' in line with the international agreements at the expense of the martyrdom of their sons. It is distressing because there are writers who, hiding behind the freedom of the press, trample upon the honour and dignity of individuals, which is one of the most important human rights". Denktas said that the court decision shows that there are such individuals in the occupied areas.

    Noting that he is not afraid of criticism, Denktas added that, however, he does not believe that he deserves systematic and constant insults. He said that if the court dealt with one percent of the insults directed against himself as a result of his position, then his assessment is that this is a necessary and inevitable legal procedure and that the country is not in the hands of irresponsible people.

    [03] Angolemli and Talat criticizes Denktas

    ORTAM (11.08.02) in its front leader page under the banner headlines, "Do not forget!" calls on Denktas not to forget that he was the one who has begun first the accusations of traitors.

    The Communal Liberation Party (CLP) leader, Huseyin Angolemli, has called on Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktas to be an impartial leader who respects human rights as well as democratic rights and freedoms.

    In a written statement, Angolemli criticized Denktas for saying that the prison sentences given to journalists Sener Levent and Memduh Ener were too light. Angolemli charged that it is Denktas himself who started the mutual accusations of treason in the country. The CLP leader stated that Denktas declares anyone who disagrees with him a traitor, and added: "Denktas must calculate well these developments that took place at a time when the Turkish Cypriot people are focusing on their EU membership, and immediately after historic steps were taken in Turkey toward democratisation by the adoption of the EU harmonization laws -- laws under which ideas stop being crimes.

    Angolemli charged that with his behaviour, Denktas is trying to make it difficult for Turkey to join the EU. He called on Denktas to listen to his conscience.

    The Republican Turkish Party (RTP) leader, Mehmet Ali Talat, said that Denktas has no right to declare a kingdom and that the Turkish Cypriots will never accept this, YENIDUZEN (11.08.02) reports.

    Talat asked that the Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktas see the facts and cease to obstruct the Turkish Cypriots' march to the EU. In a written statement he issued today, Talat claimed that Denktas still regards himself as a resistance leader, rather than a "president", and cited Denktas' remarks regarding the arrest of Sener Levent and Memduh Ener as an example.

    Pointing out that the south part of Cyprus will accede to the EU on behalf of the whole of Cyprus and Turkey is also advancing along this path, Talat said: "Under these circumstances, the Turkish Cypriot people's rights based on the internationally accepted bi-zonal political equality should not be eliminated".

    Talat said: "It is futile to try to belittle parties and democratic organizations, which have built their policies on the basis of the interests of the Turkish Cypriot people by confusing between sovereignty and heroism and attributing to sovereignty nonexistent meanings". Talat stated that discussing sovereignty without having a concrete meaning will not benefit the Turkish Cypriots.

    Further noting that the solution and EU vision, the work for which it was launched by the Chamber of Commerce, reflects the views of the Turkish Cypriot people, Talat underlined that a solution and EU membership is the number-one goal of the people, and asked that Denktas not obstruct this.

    [04] Protests against the imprisonment of Sener Levent and Memduh Ener continue

    YENIDUZEN (12.08.02) reports that Oktay Eksi, chairman of the World Press Councils' Union and editor-in-chief of Turkish mainland HURRIYET, has protested for the imprisonment of Sener Levent, owner of the newspapers AVRUPA and AFRIKA and Memduh Ener, one of AVRUPA's journalists who have been accused of publishing an article, which insulted Turkish Cypriot leader, Rauf Denktas.

    The paper writes that Mr Eksi has sent a letter to Mr Denktas noting that "it is not possible to understand the fact that "archaic laws", that remained from the British, are still being applied" in the pseudostate. Mr Eksi says that he felt that he should write this letter because he could not see any harmony between the imprisonment of the journalists and Mr Denktas' personality, for which until now he knew that "it is devoted to democracy".

    The letter of Mr Eksi concludes as follows: ".Basically, in the developed democracies, the offence of 'insult' is now punished only with paying a high amount of money and compensations. I would like to bring this to your consideration, hoping that the laws of the 'TRNC' will be changed in this direction and that you will show the necessary interest so that the imprisoned journalists are immediately set free".

    [05] The journalists of AFRIKA and their families are threatened

    AFRIKA (11.08.02) reports that after the recent imprisonment of its editor-in-chief, the journalists of the paper and their families are receiving telephone calls by unknown persons, who are threatening their lives. The unknown persons are reportedly saying to the journalists of AFRIKA: "You have only a week left, your end has come".

    Meanwhile, under the banner front-page title "The shadow of the colonel", the same paper notes that the imprisonment of Levent and Ener shows once more that there can be no justice in the pseudostate, where there is occupation and the adjudication "is under the shadow of the military regime". It has been known, adds AFRIKA, that in the morning of the day when the sentence would be announced "some high ranking military officials went to the court" and that the chairman of the "Supreme Court", Taner Erginel was visited by "a colonel", with whom he had a long meeting.

    [06] YENIDUZEN says Denktas is panicked

    Under the front-page banner title "Panic", YENIDUZEN (12.08.02) reports that the "Solution and EU" joint vision announced by 86 Turkish Cypriot organizations caused panic within some circles of the so-called "presidential palace".

    According to the paper, Turkish Cypriot leader, Rauf Denktas has tried to put some obstacles to the Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Commerce, which undertook the initiative for the announcement of the "vision", and to reduce the influence of its ideas. Mr Denktas has reportedly given his advisors instructions to act in the direction of reducing the influence of the vision. The imprisonment of the two journalists of AFRIKA is estimated to have taken place within the framework of these efforts and in an attempt to "change the agenda", continues YENIDUZEN, noting that Mr Denktas is getting ready for a counter attack, aiming at overcoming the uneasiness he feels from the "Solution and EU" vision.

    The paper writes that Mr Denktas gave his councillors the following instructions: 1) to prevent the publication of the "Solution and EU" vision in the international and the Turkish press, 2) to put forward their own vision finding or creating at least 86 organizations. This number is equal to the number of the organizations, which have signed to joint declaration of the "Solution and EU" vision, 3) to continue the efforts of changing the agenda and if necessary to bring onto the agenda the issue of early "elections", 4) to be more aggressive and 5) to ensure that the reports regarding the vision of the 86 organizations are not published by the so-called "state" news agencies and radio and TV stations.

    Furthermore, according to YENIDUZEN, right after the announcement of the "Solution and EU" vision Mr Denktas called the "Coordination Committee" for an irregular meeting. The above-mentioned Committee consists of himself, officials of the Turkish "Embassy" to occupied Nicosia, military officials and advisors of Mr Denktas. The aim of the meeting was to define the strategy of the regime against the vision. For the same purpose the "Coordination Committee" will meet again within the next few days, concludes YENIDUZEN.

    [07] State Minister Kemal Dervis announces his resignation

    NTV television (10.08.02) broadcast a press conference by Turkish State Minister Kemal Dervis who on announced his resignation on Saturday explaining the reasons for doing this. Mr Dervis said that he would be trying to unify the centre left political parties in order to create a powerful pro-European front before and after the 3rd November elections.

    Mr Dervis said, inter alia, the following:

    ".My respect and love for the honourable Prime Minister has not changed. He has provided great services to Turkey. Moreover, he has been a great leader in the development of the centre left and of social democracy in Turkey.

    I, however, believe that today everyone should think about 4 November. It will be difficult on 4 November to say that we committed a mistake. The cost will be great. There are very difficult tasks to be undertaken in Turkey. There are important tasks. They can be performed. Success can be achieved. It is, however, not easy. Turkey needs stability within a atmosphere of a unity of views and beliefs in order to achieve economic growth, employment, prosperity -- a trend which began in March but which is not sufficient -- in a bid to succeed in these tasks.

    I believe that it is necessary to have a government composed of individuals who have a unity of mind and heart, understand the future of Turkey and the tasks to be undertaken, and who are in agreement on how to go about it. What we need is not only a coalition with an agreement among leaders. Consequently, the current political division is a serious problem. I believe that we should definitely overcome this division. I am trying to exert efforts in that direction. I explained this to our honourable Prime Minister.

    Naturally, I believe that the DLP [Democratic Left Party] members should take part in the centre left in these efforts. In other words, the DLP should also contribute to these efforts. Our Prime Minister, however, had already told me that these efforts are incompatible with my position in the government. He reiterated these views again yesterday. He told me that it would not be right for me to continue in my efforts and to, at the same time, continue serving in the government. Given the situation, having assessed his views as well, I am resigning from the government. I have sent my letter of resignation to the Prime Minister's Office.

    It is being said: 'Let the people unite through their votes'. This is not all that easy. When you present some 15-18 parties to the people, how are the citizens to unite them? This is not easy. I believe that the political cadres need leadership. Let this unification be done in that manner.

    If a strong government that will work in a unity of views is not formed on 4 November, how will we be able to complete the tasks awaiting us in a speedy manner? We are also faced with the following danger if we take into consideration the Election Law. According to the scenarios, some 40 or 50 percent of the votes might not even be reflected in the Assembly on 4 November. In other words, our citizens will cast their votes in favour of certain parties, but these parties will not be represented in the Assembly. In other words, if the Assembly structure represents only some 45 or 50 percent of the votes that have been cast, then, naturally, the legality of a government to emerge from such an Assembly can be questioned. I believe that we have to prevent such an outcome. Serious efforts are being exerted in that direction. These efforts will continue. We will try to do whatever we can.

    We have some time, if not much. It is not yet too late to create alliances based on more definite views and solutions. My heart is set in the centre left. I will be working to create an alternative -- an alternative that can be created from the existing alternatives -- that incorporates and reflects a contemporary social liberal understanding that can come to power alone. ."

    [08] Masum Turker is appointed new State Minister responsible for the Economy

    HURRIYET (11.08.02) reports that Democratic Left Party (DLP) Istanbul deputy Masum Turker will be appointed to the State Ministry in charge of the economy vacated by Kemal Dervis.

    The decree on his appointment has been sent to the Cankaya Mansion. Turker will assume his new post after the decree is approved by President Ahmet Necdet Sezer and issued in the Official Gazette.

    Masum Turker said that the economic program will be pursued to the letter and he will demonstrate the necessary determination to prevent the implementation of an election economy during the upcoming process.

    Turker made his first statement following his appointment in a joint news conference with Ecevit and Deputy Prime Minister Sukru Gurel.

    [09] Comments on Dervis' resignation

    HURRIYET (11.08.02) reports that Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit thanked Kemal Dervis for his contribution to Turkey's economic recovery and wished him success in his political life. Ecevit declared that Dervis' resignation would not negatively affect the economic program or the relations with the IMF.

    Furthermore, Ismail Cem, the leader of the New Turkey Party (NTP), which is being viewed as the new political address of Kemal Dervis, has said that Dervis would add a new impetus to the NTP by participating in the party.

    In a written statement he issued on Saturday, Mr Cem said that he respects Dervis' decision to resign and added: "In line with his announcement, Dervis' participation in our party will add a new impetus to the NTP which is growing rapidly".

    Meanwhile, Nationalist Action Party (NAP) leader, Devlet Bahceli has assessed the resignation of Kemal Dervis as a belated decision that has occupied the agenda more than necessary. Mr Bahceli accused those who are in search of political alliances under the name of the EU of hatching plots. He also levelled harsh accusations against the parties that enabled the endorsement of the EU adaptation bills.

    On the other hand, Turkish Union of Chambers and Commodity Exchanges (TOBB) chairman, Rifat Hisarciklioglu said that Mr Dervis' resignation was expected and it would not affect the economy.

    [10] The New Democracy Party merged with the Nationalistic Justice Party

    According to Bayrak Radio (09.08.02) the New Democracy Party [NDP] has joined the Nationalist Justice Party [NJP]. The leader of NJP Kenan Akin and NDP officials held a news conference today and gave information on NDP's merger with NJP and recent incidents within the party.

    Speaking at the news conference he held at the party headquarters in occupied Nicosia, Akin said that the conference was especially organized to announce that the NDP has joined the NJP. Speaking on behalf of the NDP, Cetin Atalay recalled that the party carried out its activities for about two years, adding that politics have now reached a breaking point. Noting that formations outside the national line are being initiated among the rightist parties active at the moment, Atalay charged that politics in the pseudostate is divided into, one favouring resistance and the other favouring capitulation. He described the NJP as the ship of admiralty against the broken spirit of resistance within the political parties in the occupied areas, adding that the views and mission of the party are clear and that the NJP is acting within this framework.

    Referring to reports that he proposed the party leadership to so-called deputy Ertugrul Hasipoglu, Akin explained that this is impossible from the viewpoint of the party statute and ethics. He noted that a proposal was made to Hasipoglu to join the party and that this proposal stands.

    [11] Enver Emin Resigns From National Revival Leadership

    According to Bayrak Radio (10.08.02) the National Revival Party (NRP) leader Enver Emin has resigned his post. He announced that he transferred the task of party leader to a team. The NRP Central Executive Council met last night to discuss the work on the restructuring of the party and the opening of politics to young and experienced persons.

    [B] COMMENTARIES, EDITORIALS AND ANALYSIS

    [12] AFRIKA: "Sentenced to prison"

    AFRIKA (09.08.02) under the title, "Sentenced to prison" published the following commentary on Sener Levent and Memduh Hoca sentenced:

    "The timing was excellent... We were moving towards the final phase [not further specified]. However, they sentenced Memduh Hoca and Sener Levent to prison. The objective was to silence them.

    But, who would they be able to silence? Would they be able to silence Sener Levent? No. Would they be able to silence AFRIKA? No.

    Their objective was to silence the Turkish Cypriot people. It was to warn all the forces that support peace that further action might be taken.

    An effort was made to silence the community as it approached the final phase. The timing was excellent. The sentence coincided with the Turkish parliament's decision to pass the EU harmonization laws. It was served when Ecevit made airs by saying 'Turkey is now more free and democratic'.

    The sentence was passed regardless of the EU disclosure that it would consider not only the enactment of the harmonization laws but also the initiatives that will be made to apply them.

    Well, here it is. That is how the laws are applied.

    Colonial laws have been used to inflict a very serious blow on freedom of press.

    In some of its reports on Turkey in the past, the EU said that it would hold Ankara responsible for all the developments in north Cyprus.

    The court's decision came when the Turkey-EU relations began to improve, Turkey moved to prepare to urge the EU to establish a calendar for its accession to the organization, and Motherland Party leader Mesut Yilmaz urged Rauf Denktas to adopt a more constructive approach to contribute towards the solution of the Cyprus problem before the end of December. So, considering that, how will Ankara be able to explain the decision to sentence Sener Levent to prison on grounds that he insulted Rauf Denktas and that his statements might harm his position?

    We have always said that those who do not take Denktas seriously and those who forget that he is a hawk will suffer sooner or later. Was Denktas not aware that once Turkey turned to the EU, the need for initiatives to solve the Cyprus problem would become unavoidable? Was he not aware that the EU public opinion, which has maintained a sensitive approach on matters related to Levent, would rise to protest against a decision to sentence him to prison? Was he not aware that Ankara would be blamed again?

    Neither Sener Levent nor AFRIKA is the target in the struggle that is waged between the doves and the hawks when Turkey expects to join the EU and a new hope has emerged for the solution of the Cyprus problem.

    Denktas is playing his last trump card. His behaviour poses a threat to our future. Only 125 days are left before Cyprus joins the EU. Denktas and his supporters must realize that they cannot silence the Turkish Cypriot people unless they send each and every one of us to prison.

    The time for peace is very close now."


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