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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Press and Other Media, 05-07-26

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.140/05 26.07.05

[A] NEWS ITEMS

  • [01] Azerbaijani delegation met yesterday with the so-called Prime Minister Soyer and the Turkish Cypriot leader Talat.
  • [02] ICNC submitted a petition to the British High Commission in Cyprus for Prime Minister Blair alleging that President Papadopoulos has no right to represent the whole of Cyprus and the Turkish Cypriots.
  • [03] Trabzonspor manager Senol Gunes: We came to Cyprus with good will.
  • [04] Greek Deputy Foreign Minister Stylianides stated that the Greek Government supports Turkey´s efforts to achieve its EU objective.
  • [05] Turkey's Erdogan receives Turkish Deputies in European Parliaments.
  • [06] The Turkish Prime Minister will discuss terrorism with Blair at meeting in London.
  • [07] Commando battalion fired in Istanbul wounding a soldier.
  • [08] DEHAP Chairman Bakirhan calls PKK as legitimate armed forces which defend themselves.
  • [09] A woman was elected for the first time as Constitutional Court President in Turkey.
  • [B] COMMENTARIES, EDITORIALS AND ANALYSIS

  • [10] Turkish columnist questions outcome of poll on public perception of United States.
  • [11] Paper calls for Socio-Economic package for southeastern Turkey.

  • [A] NEWS ITEMS

    [01] Azerbaijani delegation met yesterday with the so-called Prime Minister Soyer and the Turkish Cypriot leader Talat

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (26.07.05) reported that the Azerbaijani delegation met yesterday separately with the so-called Prime Minister Ferdi Sabit Soyer and the Turkish Cypriot leader Mehmet Ali Talat.

    During the meeting, Mr Soyer said that the cooperation move towards the TRNC (occupied areas of Cyprus), started by the Azerbaijani businessmen, will shed light on the TRNCs political and economic goals.

    Referring to the forthcoming direct flight from Azerbaijan, as an important step that has not been dared by any other country within the international community, Mr Soyer said the direct flight due to be carried out on Wednesday will be an economic step and not a political one.

    With this initiative, Azerbaijani people also supported the Turkish Cypriots will, displayed during the referendum process last year, Mr Soyer concluded.

    Mr Talat, during his meeting with the Azerbaijani delegation, said that the Turkish Cypriot community is a modern, peaceful community, which was held away from the world for many years. Noting that their visit is very important, Mr Talat thanked the Azerbaijani delegation.

    He also said that the economic development of the communities is important and is part of the world economy, adding that the cooperation with the Azerbaijan is important for the Turkish Cypriots as well as the Azeri.

    The deputy Minister of Economy and Development, Mr Alihuseyin Saliyer, in his turn, said that their aim was to look for opportunities for cooperation and investments, as well as to explain to the Turkish Cypriot businessmen the work opportunities in Azerbaijan.

    [02] ICNC submitted a petition to the British High Commission in Cyprus for Prime Minister Blair alleging that President Papadopoulos has no right to represent the whole of Cyprus and the Turkish Cypriots

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (26.07.05) reports that the so-called interim chairman of the International Council of North Cyprus,(ICNC) Ergun Olgun, had submitted a petition to the British High Commission in Cyprus to be delivered to the British Prime Minister Mr Tony Blair.

    According to this petition the President of the Republic of Cyprus Mr Tassos Papadopoulos has no right to represent the whole of Cyprus or the Turkish Cypriots.

    The petition was handed over to the British High Commission official Mr Andrew OHenley.

    Olgun said that Turkish Cypriot the Embargo organization in Britain which is a founding member of the ICNC will hold protest gathering during the Blair Papadopoulos meeting at the 10 Downing street.

    [03] Trabzonspor manager Senol Gunes: We came to Cyprus with good will

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (26.07.05) publishes in its front page under the banner headlines Its good that we have came here the statement made by the Trabzonspor manager Senol Gunes.

    As the paper writes Mr Gunes noted that they have come to Cyprus with good will and that their competitor reciprocates this good will as well. He expressed the hope that todays match will be a good match.

    [04] Greek Deputy Foreign Minister Stylianides stated that the Greek Government supports Turkey´s efforts to achieve its EU objective

    Ankara Anatolia News agency (25.07.05) reports from Istanbul that the Greek Deputy Foreign Minister Mr Evripides Stylianides has said that the Greek Government supports Turkey's effort to achieve its EU objective.

    Mr Stylianides visited the Fener Orthodox Patriarchate in Istanbul. He first lit a candle and visited the church in the patriarchate's courtyard. He then held talks with Patriarch Bartholomeos for 2.5 hours.

    Speaking to the Turkish and Greek journalists after his talks, Mr Stylianides said that the cooperation between the civilian communities of the two countries must be improved together with the economic and political relations.

    Noting that he stressed during his meeting that the patriarchate might play an important role in the effort that is made for Turkey's accession to the EU, Mr Stylianides asserted: "The patriarchate gives positive support for Turkey's EU perspective. The Greek Government also supports Turkey's effort to achieve its EU objective."

    On his part, Patriarch Bartholomeos said that he discussed the relations between Turkey and Greece with his guest and noted that they sincerely supported the cooperation between the two countries.

    Asserting that Mr Stylianides' talks with Turkish businessmen and politicians were a sign of the importance he attaches to the friendly relations between the two sides, Bartholomeos said that they discussed the patriarchate's work on the environment. He also said that that they exchanged views on the preparations that are made for the "6th International Symposium on Environment" in Brazil in May 2006 and discussed the visit Greek Prime Minister Karamanlis will pay to Turkey in the near future.

    Stressing that they discussed Turkey's effort to join the EU, Bartholomeos said: "Europe without Turkey and Turkey without Europe is unthinkable. That will harm everyone. Everyone must support Turkey's accession to the EU as a full member. Our patriarchate has supported Turkey's accession for many years. I am pleased to see that the Greek Government also supports the perspective. The Greek Government strongly supports the process for Turkey's accession."

    [05] Turkeys Erdogan receives Turkish Deputies in European Parliaments

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (25.07.05) reports from Ankara that the Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has received the Turkish parliamentarians in Europe.

    He held talks at the Prime Minister's Office with the Turkish deputies in the European Parliament and the national parliaments of the European countries. The meeting was closed to the press. However, the journalists were allowed to take photographs before it began.

    [06] The Turkish Prime Minister will discuss terrorism with Blair at meeting in London

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (25.07.05) reports from Ankara that the Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan will go to Britain on Wednesday.

    Sources said that Erdogan will meet the British Premier Tony Blair on July 27th.

    Two premiers will discuss terrorism issue and they will hold a joint news conference after their meeting. Erdogan will later return to Turkey.

    In addition, sources said that no dates have been set yet regarding the visits of Greek Premier Costas Karamanlis and Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to Turkey.

    Visit of Karamanlis will be official but the date is not clear, sources indicated.

    [07] Commando battalion fired in Istanbul wounding a soldier

    Istanbul NTV television (25.07.05) broadcast that the 3rd Gendarmerie Commando Battalion in Tuzla, Istanbul, came under fire from the outside during the roll call at noon.

    A military serviceman was wounded in his shoulder. He was taken to the Gulhane Military Medical School's training hospital in Haydarpasa to receive medical treatment. The Battalion's Command Headquarters has launched an investigation into the incident.

    [08] DEHAP Chairman Bakirhan calls PKK as legitimate armed forces which defend themselves

    Turkish MILLIYET newspaper (24.07.05) reports that DEHAP [Democratic People's Party] Chairman Tuncer Bakirhan, who describes the Workers Party of Kurdistan [PKK] as "armed forces" in his interviews, has claimed that "the armed forces cannot be held responsible" for those who are killed in the clashes. In a statement he made to the daily, Evrensel, Bakirhan said that they "are worried about the clashes and the death of tens of people everyday, but neither the DEHAP nor the armed forces can be held responsible for that."

    Stressing that the Justice and Development Party [JDP] tries to disband the Kurdish movement rather than solve the problem through a dialogue, Bakirhan said: "The reason behind the incidents that are similar to those that took place in Turkey before 1999 is the rejection of the armed forces' minimum democratic demands with violence and denial. That has led the forces to take a legitimate defensive position."

    Replying to a question as to whether there is a rift among the Kurds, he said: "The state pinning its hopes on the differences within the Kurdish movement is useless. Those who claimed that the Kurdish movement will weaken and split up are now embarrassed. The Kurds will make significant initiatives."

    [09] A woman was elected for the first time as Constitutional Court President in Turkey

    Turkish MILLIYET newspaper (27.07.05) reports that Mrs Tulay Tugcu was elected as the President of the Turkish Constitutional Court.

    This is the firs time that a woman is elected in such a position in Turkey.

    MILLIYET who reports about the issue under the title Pride day for Turkish woman notes that the Constitutional Court is one of the most important institutions in Turkey and writes that Mrs Tugcu will hold this position for the next two years.


    [B] COMMENTARIES, EDITORIALS AND ANALYSIS

    [10] Turkish columnist questions outcome of poll on public perception of United States

    Istanbul RADIKAL newspaper (14.07.05) publishes the following commentary by Funda Ozkan under the title: "One in three Turks believe that we are heading toward a war with the United States":

    When you first see the outcome of the survey, you would hardly conclude that it is reliable. The Turkish public's interpretation of Turkish-US relations does not reflect their conclusion that the relations between the two countries are deteriorating (in fact, the survey also addresses that issue). We are clearly speaking about a possible war.

    Thirty-five point five percent of Turkish people share the opinion that Turkey and the United States are rapidly heading towards a war. According to those 35.5 percent, we are not only headed for a war, but also moving rapidly towards such a possibility.

    The poll is entitled "The Turkish Public's Perception of the United States and Americans." It was conducted by a polling company named Infakto Research Workshop, which was hired by the Ari Movement. More importantly, it was sponsored by Koc Holding, which is the largest business conglomerate in Turkey. Mustafa Koc, Chairman of Board of Koc Holding, served as the chairman of Turkish-American Business Council, which is affiliated with the Council for Foreign Economic Relations (DEIK) and supports efforts aimed at furthering Turkish-US ties, until recently.

    Let us return to the outcome of the survey.

    According to the results of the survey conducted by interviewing a total of 1,244 people older than 18 in 15 provinces between 10 June and 19 June, 32 percent of the respondents predicted that Turkish-US relations would further deteriorate while 73.2 percent expressed the opinion that the United States had treated Turkey extremely unfairly in the past couple of years.

    Some of them expressed the opinion that a war could break out between Turkey and the United States.

    I am taking a cautious approach to the conclusions of the poll. If 35.5 percent of the respondents said that we were heading towards a war, what did the remaining 64.5 percent say? Did they respond by saying that they had no idea or that it was a very silly question?

    Guclu Atilgan, the manager of the polling company, said that they had not classified those answers given by 64.5 percent of the respondents into different categories, adding that those who predicted that there could be a war might have actually meant that there could be an armed conflict with the United States, our new neighbor in Iraq, because of the Workers Party of Kurdistan. I was not satisfied with his explanation. Emre Erdogan, one of the partners of the polling company, noted: "We checked the response to the previous question by asking them whether or not Turkey could face any attack. Those who replied that it could put the United States at the top of the list. We should also take into consideration that only five percent of young Turkish people, who constitute a small group, said in recent opinion polls that they trusted each other. The military, President's Office, and courts are among the most reliable establishments from the standpoint of Turks."

    Our fears

    According to the findings of the same survey, 65.7 percent of the people interviewed said that the Western countries are trying to divide and dismember Turkey as they dismembered the Ottoman State in the past.

    There is another interesting result. Fifty-four point four of the respondents shared the view that the reforms, which the EU urges Turkey to carry out, were similar to those recommended in the Sevres Treaty in the past.

    You might have noticed that we are talking about some unpleasant concepts such as "war" and "the Sevres Treaty." One in two people are having a "Sevres nightmare." According to the results of the same survey, 65 percent of the respondents shared the opinion that accession to the EU would be beneficial and that they would vote in favor of joining the EU. Thus, the survey has yielded two different conclusions. Either Turkish people have a different way of expressing their opinions or those who have conducted the poll or interpreted its results were somewhat affected by summer laziness.

    [11] Paper calls for Socio-Economic package for southeastern Turkey

    Istanbul SABAH newspaper (17.07.05) publishes the following commentary by Erdal Safak under the title: "Are three sentences sufficient?":

    Last Friday, General Directorate of Security Spokesman Ismail Caliskan announced that they had obtained information that a female suicide bomber from the PKK [Workers' Party of Kurdistan] was planning an attack.

    The suicide bomb that blow up a minibus yesterday in Kusadasi was very probably that PKK militant that the Security directive had learned of but had been unable to get to. Otherwise, the situation would be even worse; this would mean the danger of yet another tragedy waiting at any moment.

    Prime Minister [Recep Tayyip] Erdogan once again expressed his "classic" reaction, in just three sentences: "Terrorism has no religion, race, nation, or homeland. No matter how many preventive measures you take, it is impossible to get 100-percent results. We call upon all of those actors [i.e., individuals] involved in terrorism to act as human beings."

    It struck me as if the message in the final sentence was veiled: "All of those actors involved in terrorism..."

    Actors took off their masks

    Although Erdogan was apparently referring to people such as the Leyla Zana group, or else Diyarbakir Metropolitan Mayor Osman Baydemir, who at one time had been seen as candidates to be "people with whom one could potentially do business", they in fact chose their side a long time ago.

    For instance, Orhan Dogan, one of the founders of the Democratic Society Movement, which the Zana clique has been unable to transform into a political party (because the flow of directives from Imrali stopped when the lawyers' visits were halted), let the cat out of the bag two days ago:

    "The obstacles placed on [imprisoned PKK leader Abdullah] Ocalan's meeting with his attorneys has prepared the ground for a climate of violence that provokes both the Kurdish people and KONGRA-GEL [People's Congress of Kurdistan]."

    Before that, 21 different organizations, including DEHAP [Democratic People's Party], the Asrin Legal Bureau, and the Istanbul Kurdish Institute, had published a communiqué stating that "The Kurdish issue cannot be resolved by disregarding the role of Ocalan." Dogan stated that he shared this view, but was - regretfully - unable to sign the statement because the DTH had not yet been able to complete the process of establishment as a legal entity.

    In this way, they have made it plain that, in their view, no one apart from Ocalan can be taken as a negotiating partner in the Kurdish issue. This means that the strategy launched by the PKK last year has attained its goal among Kurdish circles.

    Atasagun had warned

    As the PKK was moving forward, for everyone to see, its strategy of raising Ocalan from his status as the killer of 37 thousand people to that of being the only authorized authority to be dealt with on the Kurdish issue, what has the government done?

    * It has, with the mentality expressed by Erdogan as "If you don't think of it, it doesn't exist", reduced the issue to the dimension of "counter-terrorism" that it had prior to 1999, and has turned it over to the military to deal with.

    * It has disregarded the warning of former MIT [National Intelligence Organization] chief Senkal Atasagun that "We are not sufficiently exploiting the post-Ocalan period. Efforts to find political and social solutions to the Kurdish issue have to be initiated. If we delay, the problems could start again."

    * It has limited its interest in the Southeast to Erdogan's electoral district of Siirt. It has [figuratively] wiped Diyarbakir, the symbolic nerve center of the issue, off the map.

    Yet it would not have been all that difficult to thwart the game of the PKK and its allies. And it still isn't.

    Since those speaking on behalf of the Kurds are unable to separate themselves from the PKK and Ocalan, despite so many warnings coming even from the EU, the government could address itself directly to the people of the region. Because the people do not want to go back to the period prior to 1999. It has demonstrated this in rallies that have also challenged the PKK. As well as by refusing to provide [the PKK with] rank-and-file support.

    Erdogan should not limit himself merely to condemning terrorism with two or three sentences in passing, but should announce a political-social-economic package in Diyarbakir. Great Britain is providing a marvelous example:

    It is making its appeal to Muslims for unity and support in the mosque, at the side of Muslim leaders.

    To take the lead in the "Alliance of Civilizations" initiative is great, but Turkey has an equal need for a "national alliance" initiative as well.

    Otherwise, bombs going off all over the country could trigger movement along the fault line of Doomsday.

    /SK


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