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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Press and Other Media, 06-10-17

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.200/06 17.10.06

[A] NEWS ITEMS

  • [01] The EU Troika met with Gul in Luxembourg. Turkey´s refusal to abide by its EU obligations top on the agenda.
  • [02] Talat briefed political party leaders on his contacts in Brussels.
  • [03] The leader of UBP assessed the latest political developments.
  • [04] New regulations by-pass the problems created by the UBP-DP boycott of the assembly.
  • [05] Turgay Avci to visit Ankara tomorrow.
  • [06] General Buyukanit to visit Greece 1- 4 November.
  • [07] Turkeys exports of automotive products mainly go to EU countries.
  • [08] The 7th Pediatric Congress of Turkic World to be organised in occupied Cyprus.
  • [09] Foreigns who arrived in the occupied areas admitted that they intended to cross to the free areas of the Republic.
  • [10] European Court of Human Rights ruling upholds headscarf ban.
  • [11] The European Investment Bank to open an office in Turkey.
  • [12] Turkey ranks 22nd among investment destinations in 2005.

  • [A] NEWS ITEMS

    [01] The EU Troika met with Gul in Luxembourg. Turkey´s refusal to abide by its EU obligations top on the agenda

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (16.10.06) reported the following from Luxembourg:

    Turkish Foreign Minister and Deputy Prime Minister Abdullah Gul, who is currently in Luxembourg to attend the Turkey-EU Troika meeting, met Finnish Foreign Minister Erkki Tuomioja on Monday.

    Sources said that Gul and Tuomioja discussed the Cyprus issue, Turkey's reform process and other matters regarding Turkey's EU accession process in their meeting that lasted for nearly 35 minutes.

    Gul also attended a luncheon hosted in honor of EU foreign ministers.

    Later the same day Ankara Anatolia news agency (16.10.06) reported the following from Brussels:

    "Before expressing my pleasure that French President (Jacques) Chirac called our Prime Minister (Recep Tayyip Erdogan), I would like to express the regret I feel over the decision the French parliament has made," said Turkish Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul.

    Gul, Finnish FM Erkki Tuomioja and German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier and European Commissioner for enlargement Olli Rehn held a joint press conference after the Turkey-EU Troika meeting.

    Mr. Gul qualified their meeting as fruitful, and noted that international developments and Turkey's reforms on the road to EU were debated in the meeting.

    Gul stated that Turkey is determined to eliminate its shortcomings.

    "I hope France will not maintain this wrong attitude," he said, while he appreciated EU authorities and French historians who made "responsible" remarks.

    On the Cyprus problem, Gul said that Turkey is supporting the proposal laid down by Acting EU President Finland as it is "constructive".

    "Discussions (on Turkish novelist Orhan Pamuk, who won the 2006 Nobel Prize for literature) will end, but a Turk has won this prize and this will be recorded in history. And this is important for promotion of Turkey and Turks," he also commented.

    On the other hand, European Commissioner for enlargement Olli Rehn qualified Finland's proposal about Cyprus as "realistic and balanced". "As the European Commission, we support it and call on member states to support it," he stated.

    Praising the Turkish negotiation team, Rehn emphasized that the negotiation process is not only a technical but also a political one and underlined the importance of ombudsman and foundation bills.

    Rehn expressed expectation that Turkey should implement the additional protocol to the Customs Union.

    Meanwhile, Finnish Foreign Minister Tuomioja said that they will make public the Cyprus proposal after the parties accept it.

    Tuomioja conditioned conclusion of negotiations with Turkey on some chapter headings during Finland's Presidency on acceptance of Cyprus proposals. "If this (initiative) is successful, it will be possible to open negotiations on more chapters," he stated.

    Steinmeier also supported Finland's initiatives, and said that there will be no problems in Turkey's EU membership process if these initiatives bear fruit.

    On the same issue, Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (17.10.06) reports that in statements after his meeting with EU officials yesterday in Luxembourg, the Turkish Minister of Foreign Affairs Abdullah Gul said that their discussions were very productive. Referring to the Finnish proposals, Mr Gul noted that in spite of the fact that there is nothing on paper, they are constructively supporting the initiative of Finland regarding Cyprus. The paper points out that the meeting in Luxembourg was the last overall evaluation between Ankara and Brussels before the announcement of the progress report for Turkeys EU accession negotiations which began a year ago. KIBRIS reports also that the Commissioner responsible for the Enlargement, Olli Rehn reiterated yesterday that the European Commission fully supports the Finnish initiative regarding the Cyprus problem and said that this is the best and only serious chance before us. Mr Rehn noted that Turkey must fulfill its obligations and all the energy must be concentrated on the Finnish plan.

    Turkish Cypriot daily AFR0KA newspaper (17.10.06) refers to Mr Gul s statements in Luxemburg and reports that the cautious approach of Ankara regarding the Finnish proposals is attracting the attention, while Mr Talat is putting forth his rejective stance on the proposals. The paper writes that Mr Gul noted that they will not say yes to something to which the Turkish Cypriots will not say yes and added that there are some ideas which are part of the comprehensive solution of the Cyprus problem and issues with which the UN Secretary General will deal.

    Turkish Cypriot daily HALKIN SESI newspaper (17.10.06) also refers to Mr Guls meeting in Luxemburg and writes that when the EU brought the Finnish proposals onto the table and told him that this might be the last chance, the Turkish Foreign Minister replied: Our priority is the comprehensive solution, but these proposals could really be used as the last chance.

    Turkish Cypriot daily VATAN newspaper (17.10.06) covers Mr Guls statements under the title The train accident will injure everybody.

    Moreover, under the banner headline The message to the EU, If you want to win, dont commit injustice, Turkish daily AKSAM newspapers (17.10.06) correspondent in Brussels Ismail Kucukkaya writes that the Turkish Minister of Foreign Affairs Abdullah Gul - fearing a Turkey-EU collision over Cyprus - attended the Troika meeting in Luxemburg. Mr Gul reminded France that (Turkish) sympathy for the EU has diminished. He also said to EU officials: You have to win over Turkey and gave an interesting example: The Pope; which Islamic country can he visit except Turkey? We are the only country which will be a bridge between East and West.

    On the same issue, under the title Gul complained to France at the EU Troika, meeting, Turkish daily SABAH newspapers (17.10.06) correspondent in Luxemburg Fikret Aydemir reports that Turkish Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul said that the decision of the French parliament to adopt the bill, which penalizes those who deny the Armenian genocide, stirred up great anxiety among the Turkish population and while Turkey has taken steps forward on the matter of basic freedoms, EU countries have taken a step backwards.

    Also attending the meeting were Finnish Foreign Minister Erkki Tuomioja. German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier, European Commissioner for Enlargement Olli Rehn and the EU Councils Common Foreign and Security Policy Secretary-General Javier Solana.

    The paper reports that the draft Finnish proposal aims to prevent an EU-Turkey train crash over the Cyprus problem. Also discussed were the Finnish proposals key provisions: the transfer of the fenced-off area of Varosha to the administration of the United Nations for two years, the opening of Famagusta port to facilitate Turkish Cypriot exports under the supervision of the U.N. and the opening of Turkish ports and airports to Republic of Cyprus ships and aircraft. Gul said that Turkey looks positively on any kind of proposal for solution. He also noted that Turkey had said the Finnish proposal must be discussed and asked EU officials to keep their promise of lifting the isolation of the Turkish-occupied areas of the Cyprus Republic.

    Moreover, European Commissioner for enlargement Olli Rehn, in a statement prior to the luncheon with the EU Foreign Ministers, said: The Finnish proposals on Cyprus could be the last window of opportunity for a long time to come.

    Gul and Tuomioja, in their meeting which lasted for nearly 35 minutes, discussed the Finnish initiative on the partial lifting the occupied norths isolation in exchange for opening Turkish ports to Cypriot vessels, Turkey's reform process and other matters regarding Turkey's EU accession process.

    The paper also reports that the President of the EU Commission Manuel Barosso said that it will take more than 20 years for Turkey to become a full EU member.

    (I.Ts.-D.Ps.)

    [02] Talat briefed political party leaders on his contacts in Brussels

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (17.10.06) reports that the Turkish Cypriot leader, Mr Mehmet Ali Talat, met yesterday with representatives of the Republican Turkish Party (CTP) and the Freedom and Reform Party (ORP). The chairman of the CTP, Ferdi Sabit Soyer said that Mr Talat briefed them on his contacts in Brussels and added that during the meeting they reiterated their views that they support the overall solution of the Cyprus problem and that the lifting of the isolations is a just and legitimate demand while heading towards the overall solution. The chairman of ORP, Turgay Avci said that they mainly discussed with Mr Talat the oral proposals of Finland. He noted that they told Mr Talat that the Finnish proposals which are not in writing are outside the comprehensive solution and that the Turkish Cypriots could say yes to an overall, just and bi-zonal solution based on the political equality. He argued that it is not politically right to give a definite reply to the proposals as long as they are not submitted officially and in a definite manner.

    The paper also reports that after his meeting with Mr Talat yesterday, Mehmet Cakici, General Secretary of the Peace and Democracy Movement (BDH), said that the Turkish Cypriots were not at the table when evaluations were made and decisions were taken which concerned them and added that they should find ways to change this. He said that one day Turkey will open its ports to Cyprus and it will be present in the EU. Thus the conditions of the Turkish Cypriots being minority will be created, he argued expressing the opinion that for this reason they must defend their rights deriving from the 1960 agreements.

    On the same issue, Turkish Cypriot daily CUMHURIYET newspaper (17.10.06) reports that the leader of the DP, Serdar Denktas said after meeting yesterday with Mr Mehmet Ali Talat that the Finnish proposals must be rejected. In case they are discussed, different approaches must be set forth during the discussions, he argued.

    (I.Ts.)

    [03] The leader of UBP assessed the latest political developments

    Illegal Bayrak television (16.10.06) broadcast the following:

    National Unity Party (UBP) leader Huseyin Ozgurgun held a press conference in the party's blue conference hall today. He was accompanied by the members of his party assembly group. Ozgurgun assessed the political developments that took place during the past month, describing the fall of the Democratic Party-Republican Turkish Party--United Forces coalition because of external interference and the Turkish Cypriot mufti's activities as an unethical development in politics and a dark stain on democracy. Stressing that first the new government was formed and then a party was established, Ozgurgun asserted: The people's will has been distorted. A party, which, according to our laws, cannot even be represented in the Republican Assembly, has become a partner in the coalition. The political party in power had a satellite party established through external support. It interfered in our internal affairs and tried to establish the policies we should adopt.

    Ozgurgun described the government as a freak and said that they will neither recognize nor address it. He asserted that they will take every action to force the administration to hold early elections.

    Referring to Finland's proposals on Cyprus, Ozgurgun said that agreeing to them is impossible. He noted that that adopting a milder approach or retreating on the matter will contribute to the [Greek Cypriot] policy of osmosis and asserted: We wish to clearly say that the Cyprus problem cannot be a part of the Turkey-EU talks.

    Ozgurgun reacted to the criticism that has been leveled against him. He said: Those, who are not able to internalize our boycott, claim that we received 102 billion Turkish lira without participating in the work of the Republican Assembly. That is an effort to distort the developments.

    Ozgurgun asserted that the UBP is the only party which does not have links with the insolvent banks. He argued that Prime Minister Ferdi Sabit Soyer issued instructions to have his party linked with the insolvent banks and said: Mr Soyer is reported to have issued instructions to have our name included in the lawsuit on the Cyprus Credit Bank. As I mentioned in my note to daily Yeni Duzen, I did not have authority to sign documents when I worked with the Cyprus Credit Bank. I severed my links with the bank when I was elected as a deputy in 1998.

    On Mr Ozgurgun´s statements, Turkish Cypriot daily AFRIKA newspaper (17.10.06) reports that the leader of the UBP, Huseyin Ozgurgun has stated that the self-styled Prime Minister Soyer had given an instruction for his name to be included into the list of those against whom lawsuits were filed regarding the banks that went bankrupt. He said that after 1998 when he became MP he stopped his relations with Kredi Bankasi, which went bankrupt. He noted that as it is said some MPs of the Republican Turkish Party had relations with Everest bank and they are trying to involve the UBP in the scandal with the banks so that their party is not affected from this issue. Mr Ozgurgun called on Mr Soyer to make a statement on the issue of the re-entry of persons wanted by Interpol into the occupied areas and his relations with a person who had been the victim of a crime of a mafia affair.

    (I.Ts.)

    [04] New regulations by-pass the problems created by the UBP-DP boycott of the assembly

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (17.10.06) reports that the self-styled assembly of the breakaway regime has changed the internal regulations of the body and thus found a way out of the impasse created from the boycott applied by the National Unity Party (UBP) and the Democratic Party (DP). According to the amendment, in case the Presidential Council of the Assembly cannot be convened in spite of the fact that an invitation is made, the issue will be discussed at the general assembly. Thus, if the MPs who boycott the work of the parliament do not participate in the meetings, the issues will be discussed at the general assembly. The number of the members of the committees has been reduced from 8 to 7, according to the new power of the parties in the assembly. In this manner the Republican Turkish Party, which will be represented by 4 MPs in the committees, will have the majority as the UBP will be represented by 2 and the DP by one MP. The government will be discussing the draft laws at the committees even in case the UBP and the DP do not participate in them.

    [05] Turgay Avci to visit Ankara tomorrow

    Illegal Bayrak television (16.10.06) broadcast the following:

    Deputy Prime Minister Foreign Minister Turgay Avci will be going to Ankara on Wednesday for an official visit.

    Within the framework of his contacts, Mr Avci will meet with Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayip Erdogan, his Turkish counterpart Abdullah Gul and the Minister of State who is also in charge of Cyprus Affairs Abdullatif Sener on Thursday.

    [06] General Buyukanit to visit Greece 1- 4 November

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (16.10.06) reported the following from Ankara:

    Turkish Chief of General Staff Gen. Yasar Buyukanit will pay a visit to Greece in November.

    Buyukanit will be in Greece between November 1st and 4th, 2006 at an invitation from his Greek counterpart Admiral Panayiotis Chinofotis.

    Buyukanit and Chinofotis will exchange views on issues that concern mutual interests and try to find new ways to generate confidence building between Turkey and Greece.

    [07] Turkey´s exports of automotive products mainly go to EU countries

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (16.10.06) reported the following from Bursa:

    Turkish automotive sector has made 71.7 percent of its total exports to the EU-member countries.

    The Uludag Exporters' Association told the A.A on Monday that the automotive sector exported its products to 165 countries and 13 free zones in the five continents in the January-September period of 2006.

    Total exports from the automotive sector reached 10.6 billion USD while exports to the EU-member countries amounted to 7.5 billion USD.

    Meanwhile, exports to Italy, Germany, France and Britain increased to 5.2 billion USD in the same period.

    [08] The 7th Pediatric Congress of Turkic World to be organised in occupied Cyprus

    Turkish Cypriot daily YENI DUZEN newspaper (17.10.06) reports that a delegation of six persons from the TRNC (breakaway regime in the occupied areas of the Republic of Cyprus) participated in the 6th Pediatric Congress of Turkic World which took place in Azerbaijans capital Baku.

    The Congress was under the auspices of Azerbaijans President Ilham Aliyev. As the paper writes it was decided for the 7th Pediatric Congress of Turkic World to be organised in November 2007 in occupied Cyprus.

    The following countries participated in the Congress: Azerbaijan, Turkey, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, Afghanistan, Tajikistan, Tatarstan and Bashkortostan (republics within the Russian Federation) and Turcoman from Iraq

    (C/S)

    [09] Foreigns who arrived in the occupied areas admitted that they intended to cross to the free areas of the Republic

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (17.10.06) reports that eleven illegal immigrants, who had been arrested the day before yesterday by the police at the occupied Kyrenia coast, stated during the hearing at the court yesterday that they came to the island in order to cross over from the occupied to the free areas of Cyprus.

    (I.Ts.)

    [10] European Court of Human Rights ruling upholds headscarf ban

    Turkish Daily News newspaper (17.10.06) reports that the top European Court of Human Rights has ruled that a complaint filed by a university student in Turkey is not admissible, thereby once again upholding the ban on wearing headscarves in the country's schools and state buildings.

    In 1998, complainant Emine Arac wanted to use a photograph showing her with a headscarf during procedures for registration at Istanbul's Marmara University Faculty of Theology. After being refused by the university, Arac took her case to the administrative courts and the Council of State, where it was rejected. She then appealed those verdicts at the European Court of Human Rights

    The Strasbourg based-court has declared Arac's file inadmissible, NTV news channel reported on Monday.

    The statutory obligation to register at university with a photograph in which a headscarf is not worn does not constitute any obstacle to perform one's religious duties, the court said in its legal basis for finding the file inadmissible, NTV said. The court ruled that the headscarf ban in Turkey did not contradict the European Convention on Human Rights.

    In February this year, the court had refused to hear two headscarf cases from Turkey. Then the court reiterated that the headscarf ban in Turkey did not contradict the European Convention on Human Rights.

    The court based its ruling on a previous headscarf decision against Leyla Sahin. Analysts have said that the court's 2005 judgment on Sahin will set a precedent in similar headscarf-related cases.

    Sahin had to leave university in 1998 because the school declined to admit her after she refused to stop wearing a headscarf. The court's Grand Chamber ruled in 2005 that the ban did not violate the right to freedom of thought, conscience or religion guaranteed by an international human rights treaty.

    The ruling was in response to an appeal by Sahin against an earlier ruling from a lower chamber of the court, which found the headscarf ban was in place to protect the rights and freedoms of all students and safeguard public order.

    In its rulings the European court also referred to the headscarf decisions made by the Constitutional Court and the Council of State in Turkey, and analysts say that decisions on the headscarf made by the Turkish courts were adopted by the Strasbourg court.

    [11] The European Investment Bank to open an office in Turkey

    Turkish daily The New Anatolian newspaper (17.10.06) reports that the European Investment Bank (EIB) is planning to open an office in Turkey owing to the rising significance of Turkey in the EU accession process.

    It is reported that the EIB took the decision to intensify its operations in Turkey due to the fact that Turkey is a candidate country for EU membership and that it is among the top European countries in terms of its portfolio of infrastructure projects.

    Hence Turkey will become a Core Country for the EIB among regional economies. The office in Turkey will help organize EIB operations across other countries in the region. Authorities say that the EIB will support Turkeys adaptation process to the EU through the credits it provides. Another goal is to boost employment in Turkey via enhanced resources to be transferred to small and medium scale enterprises.

    The EIB also aims to expand the volume of credits to Turkey by increasing its operations in Turkey. It is stated that the amount of credit extended to Turkey will be expanded depending on the rise of the infrastructure and other projects that it can offer. Turkey is expected to be among the countries that receive the highest amounts of credit from the EIB.

    Two primary methods are visible in the recent usage of EIB credits in Turkey. The most significant field where credits are extended is infrastructural investments, while credits termed by the EIB as individual credits (with more than 25 million Euros of investments) are provided to public institutions and municipalities under guarantees offered by the Treasury.

    The credit applications by public institutions are conducted through the Treasury Undersecretariat, which submits public projects it receives and approves to the European Investment Bank. The Treasury provides guarantees to credits received by public institutions. The EIB had promised to provide 3 billion Euros worth of credits to Turkey in 2006, with a significant portion of the figure going to the Marmaray Project.

    [12] Turkey ranks 22nd among investment destinations in 2005

    Turkish daily The New Anatolian newspaper (17.10.06) reports that the International Investors Association (YASED) Chair Saban Erdikler said that Turkey ranked 22nd in 2005 among countries attracting foreign investments by 9.7 billion dollars. Erdikler organized a press meeting to announce the 2006 World Investment Report by the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD). The report indicates that the UK ranks first by 164.5 billion dollars, the USA is second by 99.4 billion dollars and China third by 72.4 billion dollars. Erdikler stressed that Turkey has a foreign direct investment (FDI) potential of some 20 billion dollars and that that potential was expected to be fulfilled this year, bringing Turkey up among the top 20 FDI attractors at the end of 2006.

    Erdikler underlined that the UNCTAD report assesses Turkey as a country that failed to reach its FDI potential in 2005 but added that considering the 12.4 billion dollars of investment in the first eight months of the year, the 20 billion dollars potential could be fulfilled by the end of the year in 2006. According to the UNCTAD report, with the impact of rising mergers and acquisitions across the world, 916 billion dollars of foreign direct investments were made by the end of 2005, indicating a 29 percent rise compared to the previous year, of which 542 billion dollars were destined towards the developed world and 334 billion dollars were directed to developing countries.

    /SK


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