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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Press and Other Media, 02-08-22

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.159/02 22.08.02

[A] NEWS ITEMS

  • [01] Northern Iraqi Kurdish Leader warns Turkey
  • [02] Mr Talat accuses Mr Denktas of continuing his delaying tactics
  • [03] Kemal Dervis joins RPP
  • [04] Denktas says he will submit a document at the 27 August meeting with President Clerides
  • [05] AFRIKA publishes some thoughts of Sener Levent and Memduh Ener from prison
  • [B] COMMENTARIES, EDITORIALS AND ANALYSIS

  • [06] Election Problem

  • [A] NEWS ITEMS

    [01] Northern Iraqi Kurdish Leader warns Turkey

    NTV television (21.08.02) broadcast that Massoud Barzani, the leader of the Iraqi Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP), said that if Turkey was to attack Northern Iraq, the region would become the grave of the Turkish army.

    Quoted in a report carried by the daily newspaper Bayrati, Barzani said that there were circles that wanted to gain control of some areas around Mosul but emphasised that Turkey had no right over the region.

    The article also referred to some media reports, as well as statements made by Turkish officials, claiming that Turkey wanted to attain its goal in the area through the possible US-led operation. The article also recalled the fate of the Ottoman Army in the region. The forces of the Ottoman Sultan were comprehensively defeated in Iraq during World War One by the British and driven back beyond the borders of what is now modern Turkey.

    Barzani also called on Ankara not to intervene in the domestic affairs of the region and added that threats made by Turkey would not work.

    The KDP also issued a statement saying that it had begun preparations for a possible attack by Turkey around Kerkuk, Erbil and Mosul.

    Recently, relations between Ankara and Barzani have deteriorated, with Turkish authorities claiming that Barzani was making efforts to built an independent Kurdish state in Northern Iraq. Turkey has serious reservation over the establishment of Kurdish state in its neighbourhood, fearing that it might serve to encourage separatists within its own borders.

    On Tuesday, Turkey's Defence Minister, Sabahattin Çakmakolu said that Ankara was closely watching over developments in neighbouring Northern Iraq, which he described as being within the borders of the National Pact of 1920 and thus being left to the safekeeping of Turkey, concludes NTV.

    [02] Mr Talat accuses Mr Denktas of continuing his delaying tactics

    Under the title: "Leader of the Republican Turkish Party (RTP) Mr Mehmet Ali Talat: Denktas is hiding his failure", YENIDUZEN newspaper (22/08/02) publishes statements made by Mr Talat yesterday.

    Mr Talat criticizes the Turkish Cypriot leader for his statements to KIBRIS newspaper the day before yesterday stressing that Mr Denktas continues to maintain his known position on the Cyprus problem and to facilitate the Greek Cypriot side´s EU course.

    "It was Mr Denktas who in 1997 switched over to the confederation solution from the position of federation and who said that there are no talks any more, let us look into our own affairs. In accordance with these statements the National Unity Party and the Democratic Party went ahead with the integration policy and played a leading role in the establishment of the Joint Council with Turkey", said Mr Talat.

    Mr Talat goes on by saying that Mr Denktas in his statements again accuses those who do not share his views and is trying to hide the fact that the economic and social problems of the Turkish Cypriots are due to the non-solution of the Cyprus problem.

    Finally, Mr Talat calls on Mr Denktas to stop playing with time in the talks process and to attend the 6 September Paris meeting with the Secretary-General with the aim of reaching a solution based on the political equality and the establishment of a partnership republic of the component states.

    [03] Kemal Dervis joins RPP

    NTV television (22/08/02) broadcast that Turkey's former economy minister, Kemal Dervis, said he will join the Republican People's Party (RPP), conceding he had failed to create an alliance of parties that support the government's economic program.

    After a three-hour meeting with Republican leader Deniz Baykal, Dervis said he decided to join the party to look for a solution to Turkey's problems after the economy last year suffered its worst recession since 1945. Dervis will officially become a member of the party on Friday, Baykal said.

    "We've decided to work together to solve Turkey's accumulated problems," Dervis said during a press conference.

    "There's actually a union of left-wing thought among the people, but organizational, personal and legal hurdles prevent the parties coming together."

    Many investors see Dervis, who has helped garner about $20 billion in loans from the International Monetary Fund, as Turkey's best hope for rebuilding the economy.

    The former World Bank vice president had tried to unite social democrat parties so they could present a common front in November 3 elections.

    [04] Denktas says he will submit a document at the 27 August meeting with President Clerides

    KIBRIS (22.08.02) reports that Turkish Cypriot leader, Rauf Denktas has said that during his 27 August meeting with President Clerides, the first of the 6th round of the face-to-face talks towards finding a solution to the Cyprus problem, he will submit a document with the positions from which the Turkish side cannot give any concessions.

    In statements to Anatolia News Agency, Mr Denktas repeated yesterday that during their 6 September Paris meeting he did not expect UN Secretary-General, Kofi Annan to bring any suggestions, which he knows that cannot be accepted by the two sides.

    "They made him do this during the 5th round of the talks and it had no success. Suggesting things which cannot be done and their rejection will shake his prestige", claimed Mr Denktas justifying his prediction.

    Noting that he cannot bear any pressure, Mr Denktas said that Lord David Hanney, the British Special Representative for Cyprus and Tomas Weston, the Special Coordinator for Cyprus of the US State Department would come to the island to exert pressure, before the 6 September meeting.

    Furthermore, Mr Denktas threatened that a crisis will occur in case the EU accepts the Republic of Cyprus as its full member during the Copenhagen Summit next December. "Will the EU take this risk?", wondered the Turkish Cypriot leader claiming once more that the accession of Cyprus to the EU would mean "violation of the international agreements".

    Meanwhile, talking during a meeting with a delegation of a trade union from Turkey, which conducts its conference in the occupied areas of Cyprus, the Turkish Cypriot leader alleged that the EU shows its "insincerity and hypocrisy" by asking Turkey, among other things, to solve the Cyprus problem in order to be accepted as a full member of the Union.

    Mr Denktas claimed that the 1960 Agreements give Turkey the right to say that Cyprus cannot accede the EU before itself. However, he added, during this period and because of the political situation in Turkey "some confused voices come from Ankara regarding Cyprus".

    Meanwhile, talking to illegal Baryrak television, Mr Denktas claimed that there is a person who spreads "false information" regarding him. This person, according to the Turkish Cypriot leader, says that "Denktas hides from the people and from Turkey some steps made by the Greek Cypriots".

    This person speaks on behalf of the 81 organizations, continued Mr Denktas, and alleges that he has the notes of the face-to- face talks meetings with the positions of the two sides and that he compared these notes with those taken by the UN Secretary-General Special Advisor, Alvaro de Soto's notes. Mr Denktas invited this person to visit him, with or without the documents he says he posses.

    [05] AFRIKA publishes some thoughts of Sener Levent and Memduh Ener from prison

    AFRIKA (21.08.02) publishes the following thoughts of Sener Levent from prison:

    "I am a citizen of the Republic of Cyprus. Like many practices applied since 1974 in Northern Cyprus all the actions against our newspaper and the fact that we are in prison at the moment have no legitimacy. The voice of our people has been oppressed in Northern Cyprus. Our hopes regarding the future of our common country increase because of the voices of solidarity, which come to us from the southern part of our island. 'Hold on strongly' is the message given to us from southern Cyprus. Let no one doubt about this! Cyprus will definitely belong only to the Cypriots!"

    AFRIKA (22.08.02) publishes the following thoughts of Memduh Ener from prison:

    "I sincerely believe in the United Nations. The efforts I exerted for Cyprus were worth their while. My Republic of Cyprus is a member of the UN. My intention is to defend the rights of its peoples. Despite your reaction, you cannot find justification and support to your occupation game by the public opinion of the world. Do you have the right to scatter the population you have brought by hiding behind the shield of your guarantee rights and by hiding the fact that you violate the rights of the Cypriots? Would you like it if the same things were done to you? You do not give their rights to 25 million Kurds and you want a separate state for a handful of people in Cyprus. I do not know, I want my state. Give back the rights of the Cypriots, which you have stolen. It is our most natural right to accede to the EU together with the Republic of Cyprus and be respected as human beings. You will not succeed in changing my identity. As long as I live I will not do what you want. I am very proud of being a Cypriot. I do not want to be the stepchild of anyone. I say that all the people of my country must always be free. I want my Cyprus to be disarmed".


    [B] COMMENTARIES, EDITORIALS AND ANALYSIS

    [06] Election Problem

    Under the above title Turkish Daily News (22.08.02) publishes the following commentary in the column "Opinion" by Mete Belovacikli, in which he presents certain problems currently pre-occupying Turkish politics because of the election laws:

    It seems that the efforts to postpone the elections have not lost any speed even though election discussions are being held almost everywhere in Turkey. There are reasons for this initiative.

    Imagine that the election has been held, and the voter turnout has reached more than 65 percent, and the legitimacy threshold. If this happens, there will be no problem. Because people are searching for a solution to the problems in politics, which have been caused by politics itself. 85 percent of people are reacting against politics, but they are registering on the electorate list in great amounts. The anxiety is this: The votes are not being divided amongst the 23 parties. 90 percent of the votes are being divided among six parties. If this happens, the representation rate of the votes in Parliament may be under 50 percent. This is a distinct possibility and will cause a void in the regime. The legitimacy discussion starts at that point.

    Another legitimacy discussion may occur if a certain party attains 25 percent of the vote, but also takes 60-70 percent of the seats in Parliament. We have to remember that years ago President Ozal attained 35 percent of the vote and took 60 percent of the seats in Parliament. Ozal was also elected as president with this representation. There is a gap in the regime at that point. This anxiety is becoming the source of three problems.

    First, an elected Parliament can not renew itself easily. Second, the regime cannot detect certain anomalies, contradictions and take the appropriate measures. Third, the regime cannot make the democracy a stable one.

    Can Turkey live with these problems, which it has lived with for the last ten years, another ten years more? There only one answer to this question: No! But how can this problem be solved?

    There has been a major debate in Ankara regarding this issue for a long time. The proposals which are being put forward nowadays regarding the issue are:

    1- The election threshold has to be decreased to a lower level or abolished altogether.

    2- Article No. 106 of the Constitution has to be modified, at least, to be closer to Article No. 116 of the French Constitution. In other words, the president should have the authority to intervene in order to go to elections when he thinks that the regime is under threat.

    3- Most importantly, if Turkey cannot find stability after the November 3 elections, it should change the Political Parties Law and adopt the presidential system with a two-round election system and go for new elections.

    This is why important decision - making points of Ankara consider making election on the date already fixed. It is evaluated that this will end the problems due to election quarrels. This decision makers also mention some points.

    "514 parliamentarians out of 536 attended the ballot for holding the election on November 3; 449 of them voted for the election. Some of them, fearing that they will not be reelected, are looking to cancel the election, but this is unethical. Parliament should protect itself without losing credibility. If the decision is taken, then it should be put into practice." In fact, there is no one saying officially, "let us cancel the election." Even Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit, who opposed early elections, now declares that he will not become involved in the attempts to cancel the elections. Justice and Development Party (JDP) leader Erdogan, and Saadet (Happiness and Contentment Party (SP) leader Kutan have said similar things.

    The NAP was already in favor of the elections. Deputy Parliament Speaker Murat Sokmenoglu, from the National's Action Party (NAP), considers the campaigns to postpone the election to be like "catching an arrow in the air." There is a question to be asked about these reactions. Who are these reactions against? Is there something they know that we don't know? The answer is one sentence: "There is no such thing, but there are concerns..." The biggest concern is not to do with the election. On the contrary, those who are attempting to postpone the election will cause bigger problems than those that will be caused by holding the elections on November 3.


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