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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Press and Other Media, 03-09-30

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.185/03 30.09.03

[A] NEWS ITEMS

  • [01] The Turkish Cypriot leader discloses that the Compensations Committee was a move calculated very carefully and its aim is to deprive the Greek Cypriots of their property in the occupied areas.
  • [02] US Ambassador to Turkey Edelman: ^”Time is getting shorter in Cyprus^‘.
  • [03] Four journalists and twenty-one unionists will be brought in front of a ^”court^‘ today.
  • [04] The Solution and EU Party and the Liberal Party will co-operate for the ^”elections^‘.
  • [05] The Chairman of a fraction of the illegal settlers will be on the list of candidates of the Talatīs party.

  • [A] NEWS ITEMS

    [01] The Turkish Cypriot leader discloses that the Compensations Committee was a move calculated very carefully and its aim is to deprive the Greek Cypriots of their property in the occupied areas

    Istanbul NOKTA magazine (26.09.03) publishes an interview with the Turkish Cypriot leader, Mr Rauf Denktas.

    In his interview Mr Denktas discloses that he lifted partially the restrictions on free movement in order to attain a solution to the property issue in a move calculated carefully together with Turkey, the military occupier of Cyprus. He also discloses that he will take new steps in order to attain that goal.

    Mr Denktasī interview is as follows:

    Question: Mr Denktas, could you make a general assessment of the latest developments that have taken place in Cyprus and its region?

    Answer: The events taking place around us concern not only Cyprus and this region, but also the rest of the world. An ambition to dominate the world is at the root of the problem. If you take the EU as an example, you would see that it is making every possible effort in order to nurture and support its farmers. So, they can grow the crops traditionally grown in the African countries at a lower cost and sell them even to those countries. As a result of that process, Africa becomes a customer of Europe. Therefore, an EU country, which has a strong stock farming sector, can export farm animals while the other countries get poorer in consequence.

    The ultimate objective is to dominate the whole world by using the globalization process as a tool. This is my perception of the situation. In the past, powerful countries used their weapons and navies. Today, however, they use their money and strong economies. They are now pursuing a strategy designed to control small countries by means of economic measures.

    Question: In that context, how could the situation in Iraq and Turkey's new relations with the United States affect the Turkish Cypriots?

    Answer: The United States is an ally of Turkey and a member of NATO. Therefore, it is responsible for fulfilling its obligations towards its ally or NATO under international legitimate decisions. One may wonder whether the United States' attempts to get Turkey involved in Iraq could be regarded as a legitimate endeavor or whether the pressure put by the United States on Turkey while it is opposed by Germany and France is justifiable. I hope that the UN Security Council will adopt a resolution to form a peacekeeping force, which would legitimize the United State's presence in Iraq and also help Iraq. In that case, Turkey could join that peacekeeping force.

    The Iraqis have rightly marked the US forces as invaders and regard any country cooperating with them as their enemies. The Iraqis have clearly said that Turkish troops would also be treated as enemies if they are sent there only in order to assist the United States before this problem is resolved. I think that the Turkish Government and Parliament will make a decision by taking all those factors into consideration. In Cyprus we do not discuss those matters. We would respect any decision that could be taken by Turkey. Nevertheless, I can make some comments as I discuss this issue with diplomats. For example, Russia has said that it was opposed to a UN resolution that would justify what it described as the United States' illegitimate presence in Iraq. Nevertheless, it would not be logical for a country to dissociate itself from a UN resolution. A legitimate decision to establish a peacekeeping force, which would help the Iraqi people economically and politically and hand over the responsibility to the Iraqi government, must be adopted. Otherwise, not only the United States, but also the rest of the world would find itself in a difficult position as the fire could spread to other regions as a result of possible attacks against the soldiers of other countries, who could be sent to Iraq in order to assist the US forces. There is such a risk. As far as I can judge from TV reports, those problems are also being debated in Turkey. Today nobody is blind to facts any more. I guess that the main objective is to ensure that the peacekeeping force that could be deployed in Iraq really serves the intended purpose and that the Iraqis do not regard it as the United States' accomplice.

    Question: It is widely known that there is a relation between the United States' interest in Iraq and the latter's oil reserves. What we cannot understand is the reason behind the United States' interest in Cyprus. Why cannot the United States pursue a policy biased in favor of the Turkish Cypriots although it is aware of the fact that Cyprus is a fireball?

    Answer: You should have noticed that the United States has said so far that although it was not a member of the EU it was making efforts to help Turkey join the EU. They seem to be making endeavors, but it is only for show. While making those efforts, the Americans support the policy being pursued by the Greek Cypriots vis-a-vis the Cyprus question. In other words, they advise them to ignore the rights granted by the agreements signed in 1960 and to disregard Turkey's insistence that the power balance between Turkey and Greece be maintained while putting pressure on me in order to persuade me to accept accession to the EU in accordance with Annan's plan, which is designed to cut off Turkey's ties with Cyprus. It tells the parties concerned that they should force me to resign if they fail to persuade me.

    If you assess those two facts together, you would reach to the conclusion that both the United States and the United Kingdom and thus the EU need Cyprus as a military base, which they could use in the new international setting they plan to establish in the future. They do not want to see Turkish soldiers in that military base and they want to ensure that it does not come under Turkey's domination or influence. Had they regarded Turkey as an ally, which would assume an equal role in the world order they envisage, they would not strongly oppose Turkey's presence in Cyprus. Annan's plan was drawn up in order to force Turkey to withdraw its troops from the island. The United States supports Annan's plan because it is in accord with its own interests. It has clearly confronted those who argued that the plan would sever our ties with Turkey and upset the power balance between Turkey and Greece and integrate us with a state alleged to exist, which would treat us as a favored minority.

    Question: In a statement he made in Germany, Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan said that Annan's plan was still on the negotiating table. Do you feel that the Turkish Prime Minister has not been fully briefed about this issue?

    Answer: He did not say that it was on the table. We have not rejected Annan's plan, but it is not a document drawn up after consulting with the Turkish Cypriot side. I believe that he has given an appropriate signal by saying that the plan will not lead to a solution. Picking only a part of a statement made by a politician and drawing conclusions from that part would not be an appropriate approach. His statement must be assessed in its entirety. In that case, you would see that Erdogan actually implied that Annan's plan would not bring a solution and that it was formulated in cooperation with the Greek Cypriots and others, which more or less reflected the opinions we have been advocating. What else could he say?

    Question: The Turkish press, especially those which have close ties with the EU do not share your interpretation of Turkish Foreign Ministry's approach to the Cyprus issue and your stand. Meanwhile, the public gets the impression that there are two opposing factions trying to formulate Turkey's foreign policy. How do you feel about the Turkish press' approach?

    Answer: Those columnists probably do not meet with the Foreign Minister and other officials as frequently as I do. I read some commentaries based on unrealistic assumptions similar to those made by some Turkish Cypriot dailies supporting the opposition. If those assumptions are not true, then their conclusions would be misleading. However, we cannot spend the whole day by responding to those comments. Therefore, there is no risk of a division in our society, because after the border crossings were opened our people living in the South have told us what the Greek Cypriots had been doing. They said that the Greek Cypriots had seized our lands and made every possible effort in order to legitimize this usurpation. They told us that our villages were razed to the ground, noting that the approach taken by Papadopoulos and Demetres Christofias to us was similar to that reflected by Akritas plan, which was devised in 1963 in an attempt to annihilate us. What could you expect from them given that they have said that 80 percent is not equal to 20 percent?

    Papadopoulos has said that the Cyprus question is a human rights issue. Who is Papadopoulos? He is the mastermind behind Annan's plan and he now plans to put it into practice. He refuses to admit that those two peoples, who have been divided as a result of his policies, have the right to live separately. They have perpetrated so much destruction in the South. Those people, who ignore those facts and try to deceive the international community by using human rights as a pretext, say that they refuse to conduct negotiations with me because of my irreconcilable stand. Who should be blamed for that situation?

    The blame actually falls on the three opposition parties in our side, which have told Papadopoulos and Christofias that they would win the forthcoming election as the public was not supporting me and therefore they should negotiate with them after the election. They have not contributed to our efforts aimed at finding a solution through negotiations to be carried out on equal terms. They have also misled de Soto during his visit to our side by telling him that he should disregard my views and that they were representing a majority of the Turkish Cypriots, who were in favour of a peaceful solution and ready to make compromises. They are now saying that they would ask for modifications to the plan, but they would accept it even if their demand is not accepted. Which Turkish Cypriot would accept that? Of course, nobody does.

    We are preoccupied with Annan's plan, peace and the EU. What peace are they talking about? Annan's plan is designed to put an end to our state and sovereignty and to sever our ties with Turkey. It intends to pave the way for allowing the Greek Cypriots to build settlements on our land while forcing 100,000 people to leave their homes. It calls for handing over the most fertile lands in the North to the Greek Cypriot settlers, disregarding the fact that they will abandon their more fertile lands, vineyards and kitchen gardens in the South. How could that be regarded as a peaceful solution? People hope that the new agreement will include arrangements about retirement and social security. How could such provisions be incorporated into a possible agreement? Who would provide the funds needed to guarantee that the Turkish Cypriots receive pension after retirement and their other rights under the social security system are protected? Thus, from whom the Turkish Cypriots will get the funds they would need to bridge the budget deficit, which is now being largely funded by Turkey, after their ties with Turkey have been cut off? Nobody would agree to provide those funds. Almost half of the civil servants would lose their jobs.

    The economic aspect of Annan's plan has not come under scrutiny so far. A part of the plan related to territorial distribution is biased towards the Greek Cypriots. We must come to our senses, for God's sake! We will turn out empty-handed while trying to kill two birds with one stone. The EU is an entity made up of states. It does not recognize our state and urges us to join the EU after being integrated with another state, which it has recognized.

    Today, I met with a person, who is working in the Greek Cypriot side as he had no other alternative. He said that his father had been killed while fighting against the Greek Cypriots. He told me that the Turkish Cypriots working there were subjected to insults and oppression, which, he said, intensified after they learned that his father was killed in action. We are receiving similar information from other people employed in the Greek Cypriot side. Do you think that we are happy because our people are obliged to work there as they have no other option? No, we are not. But, some people in our community are forced to work there because of the economic hardships they face. Some people say that they would accept to acquire Cypriot citizenship if Annan's plan will lead to a lasting solution. In fact, Annan's plan was drawn up in order to attain that goal, which is to ensure that Turkish Cypriot identity disappears. They intend to uproot us without allowing us to put down roots in another place. This is their plan.

    For God's sake, some politicians should stop deceiving people as part of their campaign against me. Annan's plan must be scrutinized thoroughly. That plan would uproot the Turkish Cypriots, but would not allow them to settle in another place. If the Turkish Cypriots are not allowed to put down roots, they would eventually lose their ethnic identity. This is the fact.

    Question: In order for the Turkish Cypriots to put down roots in a place, they should reclaim their property in the South and the North. In July, our Parliament passed a law, urging the Greek Cypriots to reclaim their property in the North and seek compensation. Would not that law eventually deprive us of our land and property?

    Answer: No, it is just the opposite, because we also seek compensation for the property owned by the Turkish Cypriots who left their homes in the South. It was a move calculated very carefully and Turkey was behind it. We have not done it on our own without predicting its results. What we are actually telling the Greek Cypriots is that their title deeds are still valid and they should apply to the Government if they want to reclaim their property or apply to the Compensations Committee in order to receive compensation in return for their property. Those compensations will not be paid by the people, who are now living in houses belonging to Greek Cypriots. This is a matter that should be decided by the two governments and I want to reiterate that Turkey is supporting this plan.

    On the other hand, why could not we claim compensations from the Greek Cypriot side so far? There are many reasons. Nevertheless, people have started to claim those compensations. Thus, there will a reconciliation of those claims made by both sides. What was the logic behind this overture? Have we actually waived our rights on property in the North by taking that step? No, it is just the opposite. We are further strengthening our ownership of those property. We say that they belong to us. If they have a claim, they are free to seek compensation.

    For instance, a Greek Cypriot, who came here for that purpose, said: "I left my house in Kyrenia years ago. When I came back, I saw that a family with three children is living in my house. I am now living in Limassol. I do not think that I have the right to force those people to leave my house. Therefore, I prefer to receive compensation instead."

    Those people say that the Greek Cypriots, who left Kyrenia, now have their own community in the South and that 90 percent of them want to receive compensation. We have set forth this proposal as a result of the encouragement provided by them. The Greek Cypriots will retain the property owned by the Turkish Cypriots, who migrated to the North, for the benefit of the public and the expropriation process on our side will be carried out without causing any disturbance. Some people have totally demolished houses owned by others and they cannot predict what they will face if they migrate to another region. Besides, many people want to migrate due to security considerations. If there are people, who want to sell their property and move to another place, it could also be handled, because those property are in the custody of the ^”Government^‘. They cannot flee the country after striking a bargain for that property. In that case, the state would reclaim what they were granted. Therefore, it is a matter concerning people's honor and rights as well as the law. It should be resolved through bona fide efforts. Now, some people advise the public against filing an application as they would lose their land. Those allegations are absolutely unfounded. The Greek Cypriots have already seized our lands and they refuse to pay compensation. We, however, have not confiscated Greek Cypriot property. Those party leaders should assure the public that they will not be deprived of their land if they actually trust the law endorsed by their own ^”Parliament^‘ and believe that people were granted title deeds based on that ^”law^‘. They should rather tell people that nobody could seize their property. Actually, nobody could take their land.

    Nobody could force you to give your title deed and tear it into pieces and then claim that he is the real owner of the property. The Greek Cypriots perceived that fact after they came here and became aware of the realities. Why has the Greek Cypriot administration suddenly started to issue threats? The reason is that this proposal could totally settle this dispute between the two sides.

    Question: Would not the decisions to open border crossings and to pay compensation for seized property and thus resolution of property-related disputes, which is the most complicated part of the Cyprus question, eventually pave the way for a peaceful solution?

    Answer: In fact, we have set forth this proposal assuming that it would help us attain that goal. This is the thorniest issue. You should take into consideration that half of our people have migrated from the South. What could we have told them? Suppose that we told them that they could possess those buildings and lands, but could not own them. Would any of them invest in a property if he had not been assured that he had the title to it or borrowed a loan from a bank if he did not have a valid title deed? Title deeds function as the dynamics of an economy. We have provided this opportunity for our people by means of a ^”law^‘, which we will keep in force forever. They say that Turkish Cypriot title deeds were not recognized as valid documents by the court hearing the Loizidou case. Do those who have instigated the Loizidou case have recognized us?

    Turkey has advised us to encourage our people to seek compensation in the South and promised to pay compensations to Greek Cypriots filing claims here. It has also told us that it would not question the validity of the title deeds issued here. Some opposition groups, however, criticize every step we take here. They maintain that we have not taken any step in the right direction in the past 40 years.

    We first got rid of the colonial rule and then the republic formed by the two communities collapsed. Afterwards our people, who did not remain under the ruins of the republic, founded a state. In spite of all those things we have accomplished our critics claim that we have not protected the people's rights and did nothing correctly. What should we have done? Should we return to the past? Is that what those people actually want?

    They have turned out to be the advocates of Annan's plan, which would actually turn the clock back and put us under the hegemony of the Greek Cypriots. Amid allegations that I died or was about to die at a hospital and even before people had time to read the first page of the plan, they argued that I should either resign or quit. We negotiated and the second version of the plan was subsequently put forward. Those groups immediately accepted it after reading the first page and urged me to sign it. I, however, continued to conduct the negotiations and we got the third version. Again they insisted that I should sign it or resign, warning that we would face a catastrophe if it was not signed in the Hague. We then opened the border crossings and the situation improved further. We are going to take new steps that would make things even better. They, however, get more nervous as every allegation they make prove to be unfounded. They, however, claim that I was losing my temper.

    Their attitudes provoked me into appearing on the arena. They have said that there was no difference between my policies and Annan's plan and that neither Turkey nor the public was supporting me. I must prove that they are nothing more than lies. Is it not my duty to tell the people why they have told those lies and what benefits they received in order to do that and what resources they used? Everything is very clear and it is not possible to hide the facts. Now, they are attacking me even more severely. I was astounded at some comments appearing in the Greek Cypriot press, which said that the Turkish Cypriot opposition parties have united against me. This is not something new as they were always cooperating with each other in order to attack me.

    The crux of the matter is to what extent the opposition can deceive the public. This deception process began to lose momentum as the people opened their eyes to facts. They have realized the Greek Cypriots' intentions especially after the border crossings were opened and apprehended how they would be treated by them. Meanwhile, even the members of some political parties, which are waging the most ferocious campaign against the Government, have told me that they feel relieved when they return to our side through Ledra border crossing.

    Question: The left-wing political parties and the non-governmental organizations have forged an election alliance in contrast with the inconceivable disarray in the right. How do you assess this situation?

    Answer: My judgment is the same as yours. I am worried. Nevertheless, there is still time for cooperation. They must cooperate and reach a compromise about many issues. I hope that they will do that. I believe that they should confront those who are trying to ensure that our country and ^”state^‘ cease to exist rather than attacking each other.

    Besides, describing those parties as left-wing parties would be a mistake, because their leaders oppose my policies in order to curry favor with the Greek Cypriots and thus reap some benefits. I have always emphasized this fact and will do the same in the future. Where do those people want to lead the public? Whose advice are they heeding? The answer is Constantinos Simitis or Greece, which has been aspiring to annex Cyprus for 100 years, but could not turn this dream into reality so far because of the policies pursued by Turkey and the Turkish Cypriots. It now plans to annex Cyprus when it joins the EU. A nice plan, is not it?

    AKEL leader Christofias has said: "Joining the EU would conflict with our ideology, but we must do that for the sake of our national cause," which is enough to reveal the real intention of those people. Do we share Christofias' national cause? Did not Christofias cooperate with Makarios in order to massacre the Turkish Cypriots for 11 years? Communist AKEL says that integration with the EU would be against their ideology, but they should join it on the altar of their national cause. Papadopoulos was the mastermind of the Akritas Plan and he has said that he would not negotiate with me. It seems that he will wait until the election in order to find somebody to negotiate with on our side. He has made similar statements. He said: "I have neither found Annan's plan acceptable, but Denktas should sign it if he does not want any revision." He wants to integrate us with the EU, because he believes that they can separate us from Turkey and allow 60,000 Greek Cypriots on our lands, which would further complicate the issue of distribution of land in line with their policies, and integrate us with an administration more labyrinthine than that formed under the agreements of 1960.

    Meanwhile, Lord Hanney, de Soto, Weston and others are pursuing their own interests while the United Kingdom and the United States want to turn Cyprus into their own military base. They do not want Turkey to have any influence on the island.

    When we read secret documents archived in the 50 years we see that whenever they reached a stalemate they pushed resolutions through the United Nations after coming to the conclusion that the Cyprus question could be resolved by handing over Cyprus to Greece. Those facts are being revealed today. Those documents indicate that they share the view that Cyprus is a Greek island and therefore should be given to Greece. Therefore, they have never admitted that the Turkish Cypriots also have rights on Cyprus. They want to keep us a privileged minority. They intend to integrate us with the Greek Cypriots' state by pretending that they are granting us some rights. This is the plot they have devised.

    Would my people eventually accept such a proposal? Are we not aware of the fact that we are contributing to Turkey's security by saying no to Annan's plan? Former Turkish President Fahri Koruturk said that if Cyprus is controlled by the Greek Cypriots and Greece, Turkey would have no access to open seas. Cyprus is so important. Would not we assume that responsibility?

    They brazenly complain that I am safeguarding the interests of Turkey rather than those of the Turkish Cypriots. In fact, they have common interests. Our objective is to survive and live freely while maintaining our partnership and ensuring that we are not treated as second-class citizens. Who will guarantee that we enjoy those rights? Our guarantor is Turkey, because Turkey also has interests in Cyprus. You cannot separate those interests from each other.

    More importantly, we must take into account that they launched their propaganda campaign two or two and a half years ago. Karen Fogg [former EU Representative to Turkey] has advised them to highlight the assertion that I was safeguarding Turkey's interests rather than paying attention to the Turkish Cypriots' rights. I was surprised to see that columns reflecting that opinion started to appear in the dailies suddenly. I am putting my health at risk in order to protect the Turkish Cypriots' rights, including equality, sovereignty, etc. We wondered why those issues had been raised. After Fogg's letters were published in newspapers we understood that those columnists had received instructions to write those articles.

    Question: Ali Erel is wearing two hats. He is the chairman of the Chamber of Commerce and also leads a political party. Do you believe that he has founded his party in line with the instruction you have just mentioned?

    Answer: Could there be any other reason? What actually surprised me was the stand taken by the members of the Chamber of Commerce. All of them are my friends. How could they acquiesce in that move? The Chairman of the Chamber of Commerce, which is an organization legally prohibited from carrying out political activities, has been deeply involved in politics and taken all those steps, but nobody criticizes him.

    Question: Why do you think the ^”Chief Public Prosecutor^‘ remains silent about this matter?

    Answer: I am not sure whether the ^”Chief Public Prosecutor^‘ has the power to take action at his own discretion or somebody has to lodge a complaint. Could the ^”Chief Public Prosecutor^‘ institute proceedings on his own? Somebody should file a complaint. Even if Erel has the right to found a political party, he should refrain from being involved in politics. He is the chairman of an organization, which has members with different political affiliations, and he suddenly decided to establish a political party under the umbrella of the Chamber of Commerce. This is totally unacceptable. Such a move would not be permitted in any other country. They also complain shamelessly that Turkey is interfering in our affairs. What issue has Turkey meddled in? They distort the statements made in Turkey and use them against me. The European Union, however, interferes in our affairs. Meanwhile, the US Ambassador is always cooperating with them against us. The EU lends them financial support and encourages them to pursue the same policy.

    The wives of some party leaders founded non-governmental organizations. Do you think that it was pure coincidence? Funds keep flowing from the EU or Europe. The mayors of three major cities surprisingly received EU funds and it was no coincidence. When did they submit projects to the EU? After winning the local election? There are 20 to 23 other mayors, who are not from the Republican Turkish Party (RTP). Why were they not able to offer projects? The Chamber of Commerce unexpectedly received a substantial amount of funds and checks. Why?

    Question: Could there be any connection between the pro-EU stand taken by Asil Nadir's newspaper and his decision to go to London?

    Answer: I have no idea. Mehmet Ali Talat has made a comment about that issue and I do not want to say anything about it. It was an unusual development. A columnist writing for his newspaper told me that they were informed by Nadir that they had changed the newspaper's policy and therefore they started to write articles according to that new strategy. Nadir has waged a very difficult struggle. There is no point in making the things more difficult for him. If you take a look at the comments appearing in the British media, you will notice that there is a change of policy. Everybody is free to make his or her own comment. I hope that he will get rid of his problems.

    Question: Why have you raised the issue of your rights on property owned by foundations shortly before the election although you had not mentioned it for years?

    Answer: Actually, it was brought up before when the fact that the Greek Cypriots had usurped those rights was revealed. For example, it was discovered that the Greek Cypriots had used Petrovan Ranch for years during the British rule and they made no payment. A lawsuit was brought against the Greek Cypriots by Evkaf [Turkish Cypriot agency responsible for managing property owned by foundations] because of that usurpation, which was brought to light when the ranch was handed over to the Turkish Cypriot community. The court handed down a judgment in favour of Evkaf, which was upheld by the Court of Appeals. When the enforcement officer went to the Greek Cypriot side to collect the damages, they refused to make the payment, claiming that the whole island belonged to them.

    In 1955 there was a terror campaign launched after the EOKA was established. When I was a child I used the hear people complaining that Evkaf was not taking care of their property. It was controlled by the British and it was granting or seizing property arbitrarily. The area which is known as Varosha today was a silty field owned by Evkaf. During the British rule, it allegedly concluded that it had no value and thus granted it to some astute Greek Cypriots, who had proposed to use it for building schools and churches. The land was later divided into parcels and sold. A majority of those huge buildings were built after 1963. In other words, we had no information about the records kept at the land registry offices and were not able to travel to those parts of Varosha. We were then confined to Famagusta. All those facts are being revealed now after those records are examined. Of course, Evkaf has started to take steps in order to reclaim its rights.

    Question: Some groups are contemplating replacing you with a new negotiator after the election scheduled for December.

    Answer: Firstly, they should stop walking on air and come down to earth. We will see how the people will vote. They must first see the result and then talk.

    Question: What could be the result of the election?

    Answer: Everybody is in favour of joining the EU, but a majority of the public says that we should join the EU together with Turkey while maintaining our current status. They say that a solution should be found without causing any harm to their ^”state^‘. Therefore, the struggle will not be between the proponents and the opponents of EU membership, but between those who say that their ^”state^‘ must continue to exist; Turkey's effective guarantee should continue; their status should be determined and that Greek Cypriots should not be allowed to settle in the North and those who argue that we should join the EU within the framework of Annan's plan in response to the invitation extended by Simitis, Papadopoulos and Christofias. The first group responds that we should join the EU when the EU extends a joint invitation to Cyprus and Turkey. The public should take this fact into consideration. The voters will not make a choice between the opponents and the proponents of EU membership, because everybody is in favor of acceding to the EU.

    The European Union admits states to membership, but it refuses to admit the Turkish Cypriots as it regards them as a minority. Therefore, the Turkish Cypriots must demonstrate that they are not a minority and support their ^”state^‘. It is said that the EU will admit half of Cyprus in May. The EU, however, actually wants to admit the whole island to membership. If we act prudently and refuse to join the EU, they will approach us for negotiations. Thus, we would also accelerate Turkey's accession to the EU.

    Question: Do you mean that your hand will be strengthened after May?

    Answer: Not my hand, but my people's cause would be strengthened if we take a firm position. I have told the Americans and the British that they were betting on the same horse based on the assumption that RTP-CLP would win the ^”election^‘ and asked them whether they would also take an interest in our horse and praise it if it won the race? They could not respond and their faces were ashen, because they knew that they would be obliged to recognize the people's decision if that happened. These people will be more vigorous and free and defend their rights more enthusiastically. If, however, they support Annan's plan, which states that there could be no equality between 80 percent and 20 percent of the population and aims at severing our ties with Turkey, then nobody would pay attention to their problems.

    Question: The people here are faced with a great dilemma. The ruling parties are having difficulties in offering solutions to their problems while the EU is promising them a rose garden.

    Answer: The EU is not promising a rose garden. It rather tells our people that they should dispense with their ^”state^‘ and Turkey's guarantee and admit Greek Cypriot settlers, arguing that the island should remain divided. It also tells them that they should resolve their own financial problems within the limits of their own budget. In other words, our fiscal and economic situation would never be better. I want to ask again: who will pay the pensions and fund the social security system? Who will provide the necessary funds? Our resources would be drained further. It would not be a situation that we could easily handle. Some people say that we have hotels. According to Talat, even those hotels do not belong to us. They ask how we could pay the compensation for those hotels. We will employ the same method used by the Greek Cypriots in order to pay compensation to Turkish Cypriots in return for their property. We will carry out this process together with Turkey.

    Therefore, the election race will be between the Turkish Cypriots, who want to have their own state, flag and Turkey's guarantee, and those who sneer at them and prefer to look at the situation through rose-coloured spectacles due to existing problems. They will eventually see that the rosy picture they are now seeing is in fact a dark cloud. They will then approach Turkey for help, but Turkey will respond that they severed their ties with Turkey and served the Greek Cypriots' plan designed to deprive Turkey of its right to join the EU together with Cyprus, thereby legitimizing the Greek Cypriots' illegal status. Therefore, I would like to emphasize once again that we should come to our senses. Those politicians, who are enthusiastic supporters of Annan's plan and EU membership, have launched a hostile campaign against me. They are, however, making a mistake. History would not forgive us if we make that mistake.

    [02] US Ambassador to Turkey Edelman: ^”Time is getting shorter in Cyprus^‘

    Mainland SABAH newspaper (30.09.03) reports that the Ambassador of the United States to Turkey, Mr Eric Edelman, speaking yesterday during the IDEF-2003 symposium in Turkey referred to Cyprus as follows:

    ^”A historic chance is being missed in Cyprus. The people of both `countriesī want to live together. The Annan plan, which safeguards the security of the Turkish Community and Turkeyīs interests and satisfied the sides for a solution, remains the best basis for a settlement. Denktas should not be an obstacle for the developments. A solution should be found prior to south Cyprusī entry into the EU. International observers should be present at the elections in the north. A fair election should be realized, time is getting shorter^‘.

    [03] Four journalists and twenty-one unionists will be brought in front of a ^”court^‘ today

    Turkish Cypriot daily ORTAM newspaper (30.09.03) reports that four journalists and 21 unionists and leaders of trade union organizations will be brought in front of a so-called court today in occupied Nicosia.

    The journalists are Sevgul Uludag, from YENI DUZEN newspaper, Ali Osman and Kazim Denizci from AFRIKA and the freelancer Uya Gurel. The unionists are members of the Turkish Cypriot Primary Teachersī Trade Union (KTOS) and Turkish Cypriot Secondary Teachersī Trade Union (KTOEOS) along with members of other civil society organizations.

    As the papers writes the unionists and members of the civil society organizations are accused for the strike organized by KTOEOS and KTOS after the teacher Nilhun Orhon was removed from office, from the 20th of July Fen lyceum where she worked, because of the articles she wrote in AFRIKA. In addition the journalists are accused of supporting these actions. The journalists and the unionists are facing charges for ^”tresspassing property^‘.

    [04] The Solution and EU Party and the Liberal Party will co-operate for the ^”elections^‘

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (30.09.03) reports that the Solution and EU Party (SEUP) and the Liberal Party (LP) decided to make an alliance and to co-operate for the forthcoming December ^”elections^‘ of the pseudostate. This decision was announced yesterday after a visit paid by the leadership of the LP to the headquarters of SEUP.

    Speaking during the visit, Mr Unal Akifler, the leader of LP stated that his party decided to co-operate with SEUP because they act in the same direction, their sayings are common. He also added that SEUP has liberal views. Mr Akifler stressed that the general assembly of his party is open to the option of merging with SEUP.

    [05] The Chairman of a fraction of the illegal settlers will be on the list of candidates of the Talatīs party

    Local daily YENIDUZEN (30.09.03) reports that the Chairman of the group of illegal Turkish settlers, Mr Nuri Cevikel, will be on the list of candidates of the Republican Turkish Party (RTP) for next Decemberīs so-called elections.

    The paper also publishes the names of 21 of the 50 candidates who will run for RTP in the so-called elections.

    /SK


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