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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Press and Other Media, 05-08-25

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.161/05 25.08.05

[A] NEWS ITEMS

  • [01] The Spanish Ambassador to Lefkosia visits the "NEU".
  • [02] Soyer reiterates that they will never annul the illegal title deeds for the Greek Cypriot owned properties that they have distributed to Turkish Cypriots and settlers from Turkey.
  • [03] The preparations for the infrastructure of the DNA laboratory in the occupied areas of Cyprus.
  • [04] PM Erdogan will attend a Forum in Italy.
  • [05] "Strong words at National Security Council"
  • [06] General Ozkok called for preservation of army's "unique" place in Turkish society.
  • [07] A former Turkish Minister called for federal structure in Turkey.
  • [B] COMMENTARIES, EDITORIALS AND ANALYSIS

  • [08] A columnist evaluated NSC Meeting.
  • [09] "Why the Black Sea? Why is there Terrorism in Trabzon?"

  • [A] NEWS ITEMS

    [01] The Spanish Ambassador to Lefkosia visits the "NEU"

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (25.08.05) reports that Spanish ambassador to Lefkosia, Jose Manuel Cervera de Gongora visited yesterday the illegal Near East University ("NEU") and donated to its deputy rector Prof. Dr. Huseyin Gokcekus a book regarding "Don Quixote" and other books regarding the Spanish language and grammar.

    The Spanish Ambassador said that he found something much better than he expected and noted that the "university" was a "five-star educational and cultural centre".

    Furthermore, Mr Gocekus gave Mr de Gongora a four page text about the Cyprus problem and informed him about the development of the "NEU" and all the work carried out in its campus. He also explained the targets of the "university" and the plans made in order to fulfil them. Mr Gokcekus gave the ambassador some books as well regarding studies conducted by the "university" on the issues of the "water", the "earthquakes" and the "environment".

    [02] Soyer reiterates that they will never annul the illegal title deeds for the Greek Cypriot owned properties that they have distributed to Turkish Cypriots and settlers from Turkey

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (25.08.05) reports that the so-called Prime Minister of the occupation regime, Ferdi Sabit Soyer has reiterated that they will never annul the illegal title deeds for the Greek Cypriot owned properties which the occupation regime has distributed illegally to Turkish Cypriots and settlers from Turkey.

    In statements yesterday during a meeting with the Union of the Turkish Cypriot Construction Material Dealers, Mr Soyer noted that their approach is not and could not be having the "law" amended in this direction and added that they are unjustly accused of by the opposition, while they are looking for support in the legal struggle they have launched against the Greek Cypriots.

    Referring to the economy of the pseudostate, Mr Soyer said that their target was to turn the occupied areas of Cyprus into "the cheapest country of the region" and in this manner to bring more tourists and create a continuous economic development.

    Mr Soyer noted that after the registration of the illegal workers they have started registering the companies that are not registered. According to what they were able to find out, he added, 114 companies are not registered. The one of them belongs to a so-called "member of the parliament".

    [03] The preparations for the infrastructure of the DNA laboratory in the occupied areas of Cyprus

    Turkish Cypriot daily YENI DUZEN newspaper (25.08.05) reports that Dr Erol Baysal, a Genetics and DNA expert working in Dubai, have started the preparations regarding the infrastructure of the DNA laboratory in the occupied areas of Cyprus.

    Mr Baysal noted that according to the agreement reached between the Turkish Cypriots, the Greek Cypriots and the United Nations on the issue of the missing persons, the DNA laboratory in the occupied areas of Cyprus will be conducting the preliminary analysis and the examinations will continue at the genetics centre in the buffer zone, where the results will be known.

    Dr Baysal is a Turkish Cypriot and he is the director of the Genetics and Thalassemia Centre in Dubai where he has been working for the last ten years. He has come to Cyprus upon an invitation by the Turkish Cypriot leader, Mehmet Ali Talat to contribute to the issue of the missing persons.

    [04] PM Erdogan will attend a Forum in Italy

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (24.08.05) reported that the Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan will go to Italy between September 1st-3rd to attend the forum to be held by Italian Ambrosetti think-tank organization.

    Prime Ministry Press Centre stated on Wednesday that in the first session of the forum recent developments in geopolitical, economic and scientific aspects will be discussed. In the second session, the EU will be examined in institutional, economic and competition aspects.

    Erdogan will deliver a speech on world energy problems in the first session of the forum which will be held in Como. Italian Premier Silvio Berlusconi will also attend the forum.

    [05] "Strong words at National Security Council"

    Turkish daily RADIKAL newspaper (24.08.05), under the above title, published the following article where the military questioned Erdogan's intent behind the "Kurdish problem" comment:

    "The National Security Council, which convened after the argument that Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan kicked off when he used the concepts of "Kurdish problem" and "democratic republic", recalled that the government's prime duty as laid down in the Constitution was "to ensure the prosperity, peace and happiness of individuals and society" and said, "Terrorism must be fought first." At the meeting the military asked Erdogan what he meant when he spoke in Diyarbakir. Erdogan summed up his overall approach saying, "We have to win over the citizens." The NSC meeting, which also bade farewell to the Navy and Land Forces commanders, took place on 23 August chaired by President Ahmet Necdet Sezer. The four-and-a-half-hour long meeting was branded by the war on terrorism and the "Kurdish problem" debates sparked off by Prime Minister Erdogan.

    At the meeting, at which the General Staff and the NSC General Secretary's Office each submitted reports on terrorism, President Sezer cautioned the government that any steps it took in this matter needed to be taken within the bounds of its duties as defined in the Constitution. The military for its part asked Erdogan what he had meant by his messages in Ankara and Diyarbakir, and what steps he was planning to take in this regard.

    Erdogan's reply was a briefing on the steps to be taken to improve the socio-economic and cultural makeup of the region. Stating, "It is also our business not to give concessions when fighting terrorism" Erdogan underscored that the government recognized the need for military measures but gave the message: "We must win over the citizens. That is the purpose of the steps I was talking about." The military warned Erdogan that his phrase, "Kurdish problem" could be misconstrued, and reportedly told him, "That is why you must opt not use that phrase."

    The foreign policy part of the meeting discussed the presidential elections in Iran that were won by the radicals, and the parliamentary elections in Bulgaria that enabled Turks to share power. The part of the NSC declaration covering this said: 'Foreign political developments affecting our security, as well as the election results in neighbouring countries and their impact on Turkey and our region were evaluated.'"

    [06] General Ozkok called for preservation of army's "unique" place in Turkish society

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (24.08.05) reported that Turkish Chief of General Staff General Hilmi Ozkok, who addressed a ceremony at General Staff on Wednesday, said that the most important problem of Turkey was separatist movement which used terrorism as a means to reach its goal.

    General Ozkok said that the success in countering terrorism would only be reached if that fight was carried out as a national mission within the responsibility of full staff of the state and within mutual trust and coordination.

    Referring to the recent terrorist incidents and killing of soldiers, General Ozkok said that Turkish Armed Forces continued to fight terrorism. The aim of the Turkish Armed Forces in this fight was to make the separatist terrorist organization leave its evil political target and its acts of terrorism to reach its target and give in to the laws of the Turkish Republic and the mercy of the nation, General Ozkok indicated.

    General Ozkok stressed that cutting off the tie between the society and the army would cost the nations a lot, noting that ''some economically developed countries had great problems in army-nation relations in the past in various ways--different than Turkey's past-- and this causes those countries not to perceive fully the positive role and importance of the Turkish Armed Forces in the Turkish society particularly in a period when Turkey is in accession process to the EU.''

    General Ozkok stressed that the Turkish Armed Forces had played a very important role in social development and change which the Turkish nation went through and the army was always ranked the first among the most trusted institutions in Turkey.

    General Ozkok noted that there was a unique relationship between the army and the nation in Turkey which could be different from other countries. The army --under the leadership of Ataturk--had saved the country, then overthrew the order based on sultanate and the Caliphate and helped in transition to a new and modern system based on people's sovereignty, he said.

    General Ozkok also expressed concern over the existence of many potential regions of crisis and risks around Turkey that could threaten the security of Turkey in the future. ''The responsibilities and missions which such geography brought to the Turkish army are very different from those of the other countries (...) In this regard, the Turkish Armed Forces launches all sorts of efforts to closely perceive changes and to abide by the requirements of the modern age,'' General Ozkok said.

    Mentioning the international character of terrorism, General Ozkok also stressed that international cooperation was necessary in countering terrorism.

    [07] A former Turkish Minister called for federal structure in Turkey

    Turkish daily AKSAM newspaper (23.08.05) published an interview with former Minister of Public Works Serafettin Elci by Nagehan Alci:

    Replying to a question what he want for Kurds, Mr Elci, inter alia, said: "Equal recognition. Turkey is comprised of Kurds and Turks. In other words the Kurds are a principal constituent of this nation. We want this to be acknowledged. We want to govern ourselves."

    Question: This would mean a federal structure, constitutional amendments, and restructuring the state completely.

    Answer: Yes, but federalism does not mean partition. This is misunderstood in Turkey. Nor is amending the Constitution very hard. That is within the powers of the Assembly.

    Question: Could we say, in view of recent steps, that the Kurds are likely to achieve their aspirations in the near future?

    Answer: If Turkey is seriously contemplating to join the EU it has to find a satisfactory solution. Mr Erdogan appears to be intent on doing that but no one knows if he has the power to do it. I think that the prime minister's mistake was that he did not make a decision on a solution by discussing it with institutions that insist that they "own the destiny of the state" before he made this issue public. He should first have obtained an approval and then come out into the public.

    Question: Could that have been done?

    Answer: If it could not then he cannot do anything anyway. If he took a step without convincing those forces he has a difficult task. If you generate hopes in society and then you cannot satisfy those hopes, you will create failure. The prime minister has virtually picked up a bomb in his hands.


    [B] COMMENTARIES, EDITORIALS AND ANALYSIS

    [08] A columnist evaluated NSC Meeting

    Turkish daily AKSAM (24.08.05), under the title "NSC Said 'Active Fight", published the following commentary by Ismail Kucukkaya:

    "In the land we live in security has been the number one priority throughout history. Life has always obliged the rulers of these lands to implement policies that put the emphasis on security.

    With terrorism once again occupying the country's agenda a very important National Security Council (NSC) meeting took place yesterday.

    In the NSC declaration the definition, "active fight" was given to combating terrorism.

    There was not a single sentence in the text emphasizing the EU. Furthermore, there was not one sentence about individual rights and freedoms. The MGK said: "Our priority is our unitary state structure and our indivisibility. Everything else is secondary."

    The target in reminding the government what its duties were according to the Constitution was the prime minister's remarks in Diyarbakir.

    The fact that demands for legal arrangements, a special counter terrorism unit or for something similar to OHAL [Emergency Rule] were not voiced indicates awareness of 3 October. This is because in the end neither the government nor the military want to obstruct the EU bid.

    The phrase in the NSC declaration that read: "Foreign political developments affecting our security, as well as the election results in neighbouring countries and their impact on Turkey and our region were evaluated" was in reference to the parliamentary elections in Bulgaria that saw power being shared with the Turks, who gained 12 percent of the vote, and to election in Iran of a conservative president.

    When some government members read the declaration yesterday they called it "harsh" or "strong".

    The NSC declaration overlaps not with the prime minister's comments in Diyarbakir, but with what he said later in Ankara.

    Before midday yesterday, with over an hour before the NSC meeting and the road in front of the Presidential Mansion was filled with outside broadcast vehicles from all the TV stations. Yet, NSC meetings had recently been run of the mill news. I think that the NSC meeting held was as important as the 28 February Process or the 1 March Iraq Motion.

    The day that Ocalan was given a stay of execution.

    It was clear that tensions would be high ahead of the NSC meeting. The topic in the counter terrorism file placed on the table at one important institution of the State one day before the NSC meeting was Ocalan's capture. In the report on the table the Ocalan summit held at the Prime Ministry on 12 January 2002 was recalled. The topic that Ecevit, Yilmaz and Bahceli had discussed was the delay in the carrying out of Ocalan's death sentence. After the summit Ecevit made the following announcement: "In their decision, which they made with all respect to the law, the chairmen of the coalition parties agreed unanimously to cutting short the stay of execution and carrying out the sentence should it be considered that the terrorist organization and its sympathizers were using this to harm Turkey's nation, state and greater interests."

    No need for much comment. Ankara is making best use of all means to combat terrorism. Everybody is attempting to make their position known here. The process began with a five-hour briefing on terrorism given to the prime minister at the General Staff Headquarters. Afterwards, General Ilker Basbug made the public aware of what was going on by briefing newspaper and TV managements. After that came the prime minister's meeting with the intellectuals and his trip to Diyarbakir. All the opposition leaders formulated their policies in this vein. Baykal voiced harsh criticism of Erdogan. Bahceli wrote to the prime minister. Mumcu met with the Ankara representatives of the newspapers. Agar raised this issue at every press conference. It is planned to hold a State summit soon followed by a discussion in Parliament. Turkey is starting its "active fight" against terrorism, again."

    [09] "Why the Black Sea? Why is there Terrorism in Trabzon?"

    Turkish daily YENI SAFAK newspaper (23.08.05), under the above title, published the following commentary by Ibrahim Karagul:

    "How can the fighting in the Black Sea's Macka region be explained? Why is terrorism trying to move into the Black Sea and establish a foothold there, even spread out? Are these clashes, which we can see other examples of, ethnic or sectarian-based? Or are other scenarios at work here?

    Why is it that Trabzon and the Eastern Black Sea have begun wrestling with an escalating security problem? Why are the region's delicate structure and weaknesses being provoked? Why are the people of the region being goaded? Why are there attempts to cause anger? What power is implementing what schemes in the Black Sea and why is it using terrorism to achieve its goal? Is the terrorism that is making itself felt in the region really thriving off Turkey's problems? Or is it that in Turkey specific organizations have been awarded terrorism contracts by specific powers?

    What has the fighting in Macka got to do with the role that the Eastern Black Sea is going to play in Turkey's and the region's future? What has all this go to do with global energy projects? What has all this got to do with calculations for the Caucasus? What has all this got to do with calculations for the Black Sea environment, which is steadily becoming an American goal? What is the connection with the northern Iraq-Black Sea corridor? What has all this got to do with the arrangements that will be conducted in the region after Iraq breaks up? What is the connection between all this and the northern Iraq-Iskenderun (Black Sea) corridor? What have all these scenarios, which are centred on northern Iraq, got to do with the Kurds, and to what degree?

    In an interview he gave to RADIKAL newspaper Orhan Dogan stated that the PKK had plans to spread into Turkey and the Black Sea, and that the militants going to the Black Sea never encountered any obstacles by the time they got to the area. He said that nationalism was being incited in the Black Sea. What has the Black Sea got to do with the Kurdish problem? Is the PKK going to the Black Sea simply to stir up nationalism?

    It is not enough to explain the concentration of the PKK or another organization in Trabzon as being part of the Kurdish problem or any other ethnic or cultural problem. Explanations about the calculations and schemes of certain circles in Turkey are also inadequate. On the contrary, we are being faced with the extremely well-planned schemes of those working to assail Turkey with the Kurdish problem, with terrorism and with ethnic and sectarian strife.

    Ever since Iraq was invaded I have tried to bring attention in many columns to three topics in particular: I claimed that important developments could unfold in the region extending from northern Iraq to the Gulf of Iskenderun, to the Eastern Mediterranean Sea, as far as Mersin. That is what is happening now anyway. Those who tried to keep that same corridor under control as a buffer zone before the invasion are trying to carve out different roles for it now.

    I also claimed that these developments, which would exploit the weaknesses and weak points of a region extending from northern Iraq to the Black Sea, could take on worrying dimensions. Thirdly, I claimed that this region, where the Tigris and Euphrates rivers originate, would become destabilized in the medium term because whereas the waters of these two rivers used to be an issue between Turkey, Syria and Iraq they are now about to become an international problem between Turkey on the one side and the United States, the United Kingdom and even Israel on the other. When it is considered that water projects extending from Iraq to Israel are going to play a strategic role in the future of the Middle East one would not be exaggerating when saying that this problem is gradually going to wear Turkey down and steadily become an internal security problem.

    Throughout the 21s century there will two regions that will play a paramount role in Turkey's security: the Eastern Black Sea and the Eastern Mediterranean Sea. The Eastern Mediterranean is in effect the scene of a battle for domination. America, Europe, Russia, Israel, Turkey, all the countries of the region and even China are trying to exert influence in the Eastern Mediterranean. The power struggle between the United States and the EU is the most intense. I have always seen the Cyprus problem from this angle. Turkey's greatest project for this century is to turn its door that opens up to the centre of the Eastern Mediterranean into an energy junction, and thus become a corridor for global energy projects. From this perspective the importance to Turkey of the land between the port of Iskenderun and Mersin will grow considerably.

    Turkey also has a second Eastern Mediterranean, and that area is the Eastern Black Sea. This region is on Turkey's and the world's agenda as never before in its history. Like with the Eastern Mediterranean this region's importance for global energy projects is also increasing. The struggle for the Caucasus going on between the United States and Russia is bringing the Caspian energy fields and the Black Sea to a critical point in world politics. The United States' piling of 25,000 soldiers into Romania and Bulgaria, the regime changes in Ukraine and Georgia, the strategy of keeping Russia out of the Black Sea; all these facts are dragging the region into a war of influence on a global scale.

    Acting on this assumption three ports are going to play important roles in the fate of Turkey and the region: Iskenderun, Mersin and Trabzon. Not only are these three ports going to increase in economic value, but they are also going to take on roles in regional security strategies. While the ports at Mersin and Iskenderun as well as the Eastern Black Sea and the Eastern Mediterranean are going to play vital roles in energy corridors Trabzon will find itself at the center of regional initiatives aimed at the Black Sea, Caspian energy reserves, the future of Iran, and the game of chess in the Caucasus. The three ports are going to become heavyweights in the political, economic and security strategies of Turkey, its neighbors, and even powers attempting to muscle in on the region.

    In connection with all this the Eastern Black Sea is steadily going to gain importance in world politics. It will gradually become the battlefield for a war of influence between certain powers. The security problems that will occur are going to be the result of this war of influence, and not the region's fragile structure. The terrorism being directed at the Black Sea and Trabzon has nothing to do with the Kurdish problem, nor with any other local problem. Even if the Kurdish problem is solved this is going to continue. The region Turkey is located in is reliving the start of the 20th century. There are those who are trying to return the region to the start of the 20th century. If Syria is intervened in, if Iraq is destabilized then you will see what Turkey is going to be wrestling with."


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