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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Press and Other Media, 03-05-26

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.96/03 24-25-26.05.03

[A] NEWS ITEMS

  • [01] Gul says the EU will establish a "unit" in Ankara's puppet regime in occupied Cyprus.
  • [02] Erdogan supports the philosophy "Turk goes, Turk comes to Cyprus".
  • [03] Without apologizing for the murders of innocent Greek Cypriots in 1996 Kutlay Erk calls on the Greek Cypriot side to remove the placards at the barricade reminding the events.
  • [04] The Justice and Development Party after six months in power.
  • [B] COMMENTARIES, EDITORIALS AND ANALYSIS

  • [05] Some columnists in the Turkish Cypriot press are pointing out how the settlers are exploited and the change of the Republican Turkish Party's (RTP) policy on the issue of the Turkish settlers in Cyprus.

  • [A] NEWS ITEMS

    [01] Gul says the EU will establish a "unit" in Ankara's puppet regime in occupied Cyprus

    Istanbul MILLIYET newspaper (25.05.03) publishes the following report by Utku Cakirozer and Abdullah Karakus under the title: "EU formula to lift embargo on TRNC":

    "Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul has said that the package the EU will disclose for the `TRNC' will contain a provision that will allow the sale of Turkish Cypriot products to the organization. Stressing that the EU will establish a "unit" in the `TRNC' for that purpose, he added that the lifting of the ban on visits by Greek Cypriot maritime vessels to Turkey's ports will be placed on the agenda after the initiative is realized.

    Gul stressed that he discussed the matter twice with Gunther Verheugen, EU Commissioner responsible for the Union's expansion, and noted: "They take our calls for the lifting of the embargoes to mean the removal of restrictions on trade. They will take important steps in that direction. The EU will establish a unit in the `TRNC'. The permit for Turkish Cypriot exports to Europe will be approved by the organization's unit official there."

    Asserting that they will wait for the EU step, he said: "We will be ready to respond with new initiatives. We can lift the ban on the visit of Greek Cypriot registered vessels to Turkey's ports only after we see the steps they take."

    Meanwhile, the officials of the Prime Minister's Office said that Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan favours the lifting of the trade ban on the Greek Cypriots. However, they noted that he waits to see the steps that will be taken by the EU and the Greek Cypriot side."

    [02] Erdogan supports the philosophy "Turk goes, Turk comes to Cyprus"

    AFRIKA (25.05.03) reports that Turkey's Prime Minister Racep Tayyip Erdogan has said that there would be no problem if all the Turkish Cypriots abandon Cyprus, because Turkey would send many settlers from Anatolia.

    Under the front-page banner title "We shall send", the paper discloses what Mr Erdogan had said to a delegation of the Platform "This Country is Our's", which met with him in Ankara on 30 January 2003.

    According to Halil Pasa, a journalist of AFRIKA who participated in the above -mentioned delegation, Mr Erdogan said, inter alia, the following to the Turkish Cypriot delegation:

    "You have not held a Turkish flag at your rally. This caused us a problem. There were some unpleasant developments. Europe does not want us. Look, my first visit after the elections was in Europe, I have met with some political and even religious leaders. They are a Christian Club. On the other hand, we are Muslims. They are not close to the Turks and the Muslims. They do not consider us to be one of them. These are realities. The opinion of some of them is known on this issue".

    When the Turkish Cypriot delegation asked from Mr Erdogan to accept the Annan plan, he told them that Turkey did not support everything, which was in the Annan plan. When the Prime Minister was reminded that there was no time, he said: "What shall we do? We could not accept everything".

    Asked what are their reservations regarding the plan he reiterated the Turkish view that Turkey's guarantees should remain, because "the guarantees of the Turkish army are very important" for them.

    "We are also worried about the Greek Cypriots who will come among us. This is not acceptable. Therefore, global exchange of property must take place", supported Mr Erdogan, alleging that the global exchange of properties should be implemented immediately, because "there was a trap" in the suggestion providing for Greek Cypriots to return to their homes and live together with the Turkish Cypriots. Another of the "traps" for the Turkish side in the Annan plan was, according to Mr Erdogan, the fact that it referred to the leaders of the two communities not as "founding peoples" or "founding states", but just as "the sides" or "leaders".

    When the Turkish Cypriot delegation told Mr Erdogan that in case the Annan plan was rejected the Turkish Cypriots would abandon Cyprus and asked him whether there could be a land without people, the prime Minister said: "The language, the religion, the nationality, the flag and the territory are enough for a nation. The recognition by the world is not a precondition for being a state. When you have the above-mentioned things then it is enough. There will be no emigration. If no people remain there, we have a lot. We shall send".

    [03] Without apologizing for the murders of innocent Greek Cypriots in 1996 Kutlay Erk calls on the Greek Cypriot side to remove the placards at the barricade reminding the events

    KIBRISLI (25.05.03) reports that Kutlay Erk, the so-called "mayor" of the occupied part of Nicosia, has called on the Greek Cypriot side to remove the placards at the Ledra Palace barricade reminding the events which took place in 1996 in the buffer zone in Derynia village and resulted with the death of two young Greek Cypriots, Tassos Isaak and Solomos Solomou, who had brutally been murdered by Turkish nationalists members of the "Grey Wolves" and Turkish army officers.

    According to the paper, addressing a conference in Berlin under the title "the Common Culture- the Cultures in the Cyprus Society", Mr Erk said that these pictures should be removed because they are reminding of hatred and noted that similar placards at the Turkish barricade had been removed in 2000, upon the initiative of Mustafa Akinci, who was then the so-called "deputy prime minister" of the puppet regime.

    Meanwhile, AFRIKA (26.05.03) comments on the issues under the title "Photographs of murders" as follows:

    "At the Greek Cypriot barricade at Ledra Palace there are pictures of crimes. They are the pictures of two Greek Cypriots murdered by the Turks. The one of them is the Greek Cypriot murdered on the flagstaff and the other is the Greek Cypriot who was lynched in a horrible manner in Derynia. The whole world watched these crimes on the TV. Now some from our side call on the Greek Cypriot side to remove these photographs. Furthermore, the fact that the people who are doing this belong to the part of the society, which wants peace and solution, is worth to be mentioned. Once there were pictures of murders at the Turkish side of the barricade as well. Mustafa Akinci succeeded in removing them when he was deputy prime minister. Akinci was the first one who sent this message to the Greek Cypriots. He said: 'We have removed them, now is your turn'. However, the Greeks resisted until today and did not remove the pictures. Kutlay Erk is the one who made the recent call on the Greek Cypriots.

    Neither Akinci's not Erk's call includes the element of self-criticism and apology about the murders of these two Greek Cypriots. That is why these calls had no result. The Turkish side had not made so far any statement, which shows signs of regret regarding the murders in Derynia. On the contrary, it behaved in a manner that protected its interests. We have to apologize first in order for these photographs to be removed. We have to do just like journalist Andreas Paraschos did. Speaking on a television programme, Andreas apologized to the Turks in spite of the fact that he had not committed crimes. Make the first steps for the removal of the pictures. Apologize. At least, criticize these crimes. Afterwards you can demand"., concludes AFRIKA.

    [04] The Justice and Development Party after six months in power

    Turkish Daily News (25.05.03) reports that the Justice and Development Party (JDP) witnessed serious unrest while the new Turkish government entered its sixth month in power. JDP received one third of the total votes in the 2002 elections, but holds two thirds of the 550-seat Parliament. But JDP suffers from keeping control of its huge group.

    One third of the 365 JDP deputies in Parliament oppose the decisions of the party in every piece of crucial voting. Recently, two candidates of the JDP administration for the group chairman race in Parliament had difficulties in passing the opposition's candidate Ertugrul Yalcinbayir. The party administration asked one of their two candidates to quit in the second round of the voting in an order to overcome this problem. Despite this effort, Yalcinbayir managed to increase his votes from the first round to 191 in the second round of the voting.

    Meanwhile, JDP leader and Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan organized a meeting with JDP deputies in the Mediterranean city of Antalya over last weekend. The meeting that was organized in order to decrease tension, listen to the complaints of the deputies and to maintain the harmony among party members, yet resulted in failure.

    Deputies who went to Antalya returned to capital city angry. The main reason was the brief speech of Recep Tayyip Erdogan where he strongly warned the JDP deputies on the first day of the meeting. After this speech Erdogan left the meeting and flew to Istanbul. After the end of this weekend meeting, JDP members close to the administration remained silent but those who opposed said, "There was no need for us to go to Antalya to get it in the neck. He could have done the same during the weekly group meeting in Parliament that was cancelled due to the Antalya meeting.

    The JDP administration is aware that the unrest has continued since the day of the voting on the motion about the deployment of the U.S. troops in Turkey and sending Turkish troops abroad. Parliament rejected this motion despite the fact that JDP holds the majority of seats.

    The party administration tried to increase the number of deputy group chairmen from three to five in an effort to relieve the growing tension in the party. But when the administration applied pressure on the group to elect their candidates for the two new deputy group chairman positions, the outcry was heavy.

    According to JDP bylaws, more than half of the 365 JDP members votes are needed to elect a deputy group chairman in the first two rounds of voting. Two candidates of the administration failed to collect this while opposed deputies of the JDP nominated Ertugrul Yalcinbayir for the position. His received votes were more than at least one of the candidates of the administration. In the light of this panorama, the party administration decided to postpone the voting for a week.

    Elections took place 15 days later and before the voting, one of the two candidates of the administration withdrew and another JDP figure replaced him. On the other hand, Yalcinbayir's votes rose to 121 from 91. But he failed to be elected as he couldn't pass the needed majority. At the third voting held on the same day, the party administration was successful to force JDP members to elect their candidates as the new deputy group chairmen. Despite the pressure of the administration, 74 deputies continued to support the candidate of the opposition.

    Previously, the JDP administration, trusting its 365 seats in Parliament, tried to amend the Constitution without feeling the necessity of making an agreement with the opposition parties. This attempt revealed that the JDP suffers from lack of unity in the party. JDP's amendment draft allowing the sale of forestry lands could not get the 365 votes despite the support of independent lawmakers of Parliament. This meant that referendum would be needed but President Ahmet Necdet Sezer saved the party from this position when he vetoed the amendment.

    Opposition in the JDP showed its force during crucial voting, but they do not have a leader and they lack unity among themselves. Deputies say that this will continue like this until the party convention set for August. If the party administration insists on seeing the opposed deputies as ordinary people that are needed during parliamentary votings, some of them may decide to resign from the party.

    It is claimed that the reason behind the fact that opposition in the party was formed so easily and promptly is carelessness while preparing the candidate lists before the general elections.

    Even the Party itself was not expecting to get the amount of votes it did in the 2002 elections, as the results revealed that its vote capacity was doubled during the elections. As the party administration was not expecting this success, it included some figures who were not coming from the "National View" tradition on the bottom of the lists. Even these figures were not expecting to be elected to Parliament. That's why a number of deputy candidates, including current Istanbul deputy Emin Sirin, didn't carry out election campaigns.

    In the aftermath of the elections, only two parties were successful in attaining seats in Parliament, as other parties of the country failed to pass the 10 percent national threshold needed for a party to enter Parliament. JDP won more seats than it predicted accordingly. On the other hand, the mentioned deputies were not feeling the need to have pure loyalty to the party administration.

    It is predicted that the number of these deputies varies between 90 and 100. The "weakest link" of the party is the amount of candidates that may resign from the party.

    The party's most powerful and first group, called the team of "Korkut Ozal", dominate the party but have started experiencing the consequences of not listening to the words of differing voices.

    On the other hand, the number of the second group that is loyal to the party administration is around 200, revealing that the nucleus team in the party is still powerful. But if the weakest link decides to leave the party with the autumn leaves, then the seats of the JDP government may fall below 267.

    This will urge JDP to form a coalition with its own opposition to form a new coalition government or it has to leave its seat as the ruling party to a coalition including current main opposition Republican People's Party (RPP).

    Autumn holds the risk for JDP to witness a new crisis in the light of economic indicators. Moreover, this period may also witness the failure of European Union (EU) dreams, one of the main issues JDP sees as the guarantee of its power.

    The JDP administration has to take a very serious political decision in autumn, also. If it can feel the upcoming hurricane, it may try to hold local elections before its scheduled period. This requires amendment in the Constitution as the Turkish Constitution's Article 127 says that local elections should be held in five years.

    If the JDP administration seeks to hold local elections in the autumn of 2003 instead of March 2004, it has to get the support of its opposed deputies.

    The JDP has displayed during six months in power that it was caught red-handed in running the country. The upcoming six months will reveal if the party administration has the needed experience to run a party. JDP will either save itself from the shortcomings of having a huge group in Parliament or start suffering due to these shortcomings.


    [B] COMMENTARIES, EDITORIALS AND ANALYSIS

    [05] Some columnists in the Turkish Cypriot press are pointing out how the settlers are exploited and the change of the Republican Turkish Party's (RTP) policy on the issue of the Turkish settlers in Cyprus

    AFRIKA (26.05.03), in the column "Kalay" under the title "Our Concession", reports the following:

    "We have written that everything has been disclosed. There is a connection between what Erdogan has said and the rights that the administration of RTP asked from the Republic of Cyprus for the Turkish settlers.

    For years now, Denktas and his 'governments' were seeing these people (settlers) as milky cows. The RTP also wants to milk them now. But if there were archives and we looked at them, we would see that it was the RTP which said that these people were brought in order to usurp our free will."

    Columnist Levent Ozadam, writing in HALKIN SESI (26.05.03), writes inter alia the following on the issue: "Everyone knows that it would not be easy this time to buy over the Turkish settlers, who are known as the right bullet of the soldier in the general elections. Especially the political parties, which form the 'government', would not be able to share among their family and relatives the opportunities of the 'state'."

    Izzet Izcan, the General Secretary of the United Cyprus Party (UCP) gave an interview on the issue to Ali Osman in AFRIKA (26.05.03).

    Replying to a question on how he sees the demand of RTP that the Turkish settlers are benefitted from the Republic of Cyprus, Izcan said: "There is an interest in this thought. We know the people who come from Turkey and Turkey knows that these people are not refugees. They were brought here by the people who committed war crimes and tried to usurp the free will of the Turkish Cypriots. They lost their identity. They will be what the international law says. On this issue the humanitarian aspect will be applied only to those who got married here and have children. The Turkish and the Greek Cypriots will take this decision within the framework of the international law.

    Some political parties exploit these people on the pretext of promoting the human rights, in order to get some votes."

    /SK


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