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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Press and Other Media, 07-04-24
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From: The Republic of Cyprus Press and Information Office Server at <http://www.pio.gov.cy/>TURKISH PRESS AND OTHER MEDIA No.78/07 24.04.07
[A] NEWS ITEMS
[B] COMMENTARIES EDITORIALS AND ANALYSIS
[A] NEWS ITEMS
 Abdullah Gül is the AKPs candidate for the forthcoming presidential elections in Turkey - The first round of voting to be held on the 27th of AprilCNN Turk television (24.04.07, at 12.00 noon) broadcast that the Foreign Minister and Deputy Prime Minister Abdullah Gul will be the candidate of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) for the forthcoming presidential elections in Turkey. Guls candidacy was announced by the Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan during a speech he delivered at his partys Parliamentary group today.
Mr Erdogan stated, inter alia, that Mr Gul fulfils all the criteria and possesses all the qualities of the President and he will be accepted by the public and the Turkish Assembly. He also stated that Guls name will strengthen the Turkish Republic and the Democracy in Turkey.
In addition, CNN Turk also broadcast that the first round of the presidential election in Turkey will take place on the 27th of April. As regards the following rounds, if Gul is not elected in the first round, they will take place as follows: The second voting will take place on the 2nd of May, the third voting on the 9th of May and the fourth voting on the 15th of May.
 The Turkish Football Federation is applying to FIFA for carrying out a project in the occupied part of NicosiaTurkish Cypriot daily YENIDUZEN newspaper (24.04.07) reports that the Turkish Football Federation is applying to FIFA and UEFA in order to carry out a so-called Village of Hope Project in the area where the Taksim Stadium is in the occupied part of Nicosia. The stadium is used by the Turkish Cypriot Cetinkaya football team for training.
According to the paper, the Turkish Federation has the support of the so-called Turkish Cypriot Federation for this project, the aim of which is to create a place where Turkish Cypriot, Greek Cypriot, Turkish and Greek children will be able to train together.
Gunduz Tekin Onay, general coordinator and chief advisor of the Turkish Football Federations Research, Planning, Education and Development, said that they are planning to create in Cyprus the project they intended to implement in Israel and Palestine in order to contribute to world peace, but they were not able to carry it out.
The paper reports also that the aim is for the project to be submitted to FIFA shortly and be materialized with the support of UNESCO. Mr Onay noted that the project will be materialized in case the Greek Cypriots see positively this proposal. He expressed the belief that the Greek Cypriots will see positively the village of hope project and added that he thinks that Greece too will support it.
On his part, the chairman of the so-called Turkish Cypriot Football Federation Mr Okutan said that they will give every support to the project which will be contributing to peace in Cyprus. This project will contribute to the progress of the football on the island. We expect the Cyprus Football Association (CFA) officials to approach positively the issue, he noted.
 The land and survey system in the occupied areas of Cyprus has been computerizedTurkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (24.04.07) reports that the land survey system in the occupied areas of Cyprus is being reformed in a planned manner with laws adopted within the past one and a half year. The paper notes that transferring all the data into computers is the most important step of the reform. With the contribution of the universities in the occupied areas, all the title deeds given since the year of 1900 have been transferred into computers within the past one and a half year.
Hasan Findik, undersecretary responsible for housing and land survey issues at the self-styled ministry of internal affairs, told illegal TAK news agency that within the framework of the project one million and 200 thousand title deeds were transferred into computers.
Findik said that there is a charter which shows that the plots of land are about 600 thousands. He noted that approximately three thousand properties which are in the free areas of the island and no one filed an application for them were not transferred into the computer.
He noted that they have launched a work for renewing the charters with pictures taken from a satellite and added that they held meetings during the past few days with Turkeys Land and Survey Department. He explained that with the pictures acquired from the satellite all the information on the land and housing will be clarified in detail.
 The occupation regime celebrated yesterday the National Sovereignty and the Childrens DayTurkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (24.04.07) reports that the Turkish Cypriots celebrated yesterday the 87th anniversary of the establishment of the Turkish Grand National Assembly and the day dedicated to the children by Ataturk. Addressing the ceremony, Canan Oztoprak, self-styled minister of education, said that the new generations will take over the struggle which the Turkish Cypriots give for years for their existence on this land and for being integrated to the world. Therefore, the future generations have a great duty, she said and added: We trust the children who are the guarantee for our future and our existence on this island.
The Turkish Cypriot leader Talat, the speaker of the assembly, Fatma Ekenoglu, the so-called prime minister Soyer, the illegal ambassador of Turkey Turkekul Kurtekin, the commander of the Turkish occupation army general Hayri Kivrikoglu and the leader of the National Unity Party (UBP), Tahsin Ertugruloglu were among the participants in the celebrations in the occupied part of Nicosia. Meanwhile, the so-called Turkish Cypriot Platform organized a protest act yesterday in Nicosia, alleging that the necessary importance was not attached to the 23rd of April. Furthermore, celebrations were carried out in London also by TRNCs press attaché and the education and cultural consultant of the Turkish embassy.
Under the title 23 April crisis in the TRNC, Turkish MILLIYET newspaper (24.04.07) publishes a report by Sefa Karahasan, the papers correspondent in occupied Cyprus who writes that the issue of the celebrations marking the 23rd of April, the National Sovereignty and the Childrens Day, created tension in occupied Cyprus, between the army and the civilian authorities. According to MILLIYET, the people found the official celebrations organised by the state to be very poor and it preferred to celebrate the day at the events prepared by the occupation army.
 Ertugruloglu reiterates the view of defending the TRNCTurkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (24.04.07) reports that the leader of the National Unity Party (UBP), Tahsin Ertugruloglu has argued that the Turkish Cypriot leader Talat should defend their state. In a written statement he issued yesterday on the occasion of the 3rd anniversary of the 24 April referendum on the Annan Plan, Mr Ertugruloglu evaluated the situation within the last three years and alleged that the promises given to the Turkish Cypriots were not fulfilled.
Mr Ertugruloglu criticized Mr Talat for his stance and statements. He claimed that President Papadopoulos will use the regulations of the EU, the 8 July Agreement and Turkeys relations with the EU for the Osmosis policy. He noted: Very well. What is the way out? It is very simple. We will defend the TRNC, that is, our sovereign state and we will do what is necessary.
 Sun Express is starting flights between illegal Tymbou airport and LondonTurkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (24.04.07) reports that Sun Express has announced that it is starting flights between illegal Tymbou airport and London through Izmir. The flights will be carried out twice a week, on Tuesdays and Saturdays, according to a statement issued yesterday by the company.
 TUSIAD calls for target date on Turkey's accession to EUIstanbul HURRIYET newspaper (23.04.07) reports that TUSIADs Chairwoman Arzuhan Dogan Yalcindag called for a date to be established for Turkey's accession to the EU, saying that an appropriate target date would be 1 January 2014.
The report says that Yalcindag condemned the murder of journalist Hrant Dink and the three personnel of a printing house in Malatya and noted that "the economic program, which is being resolutely realized, will help Turkey's economy to become one of the strongest in the EU by 2014.
Asserting that Yalcindag supported the government's adaptation program, the report says that she urged the officials to strictly supervise the realization of the legal measures called for by the program. On economic growth, it quotes her as saying: The deadly attacks are gradually causing serious damage to Turkey's image in the world, which we believe is improving. Economic growth in stability will strengthen our self-confidence and decrease the tension between the communal and cultural sectors.
[B] COMMENTARIES EDITORIALS AND ANALYSIS
 How the Turkish press covers the presidential elections before the list of candidates is finalisedOn April 23, 2007 the Turkish press continued to deal with the presidential elections as follows, as the time (25.04.07) for the list of candidates being finalised is approaching:
In an analysis in MILLIYET, Yaman Toruner describes the ruling AKP as the first religious party in Turkey since the republic was established and views the tactics employed by the religious forces to achieve their objectives. In his analysis, he outlines their road map by saying: All state cadres will be replaced, the media organs, judiciary, and universities will be placed under control, the military forces will be weakened and converted into an institution subordinate to the political administration, and Ataturk's achievements will be undermined. Toruner argues that the presidential palace is now the final obstacle against the fundamentalists and notes: Let us wait and see whether they will have the courage to take the final step.
Derya Sazak also in MILLIYET reacts to the claims that the media organs failed to appropriately cover the meeting that was held to support the secular republic in Ankara on 14 April. He stresses that the Dogan Media Group supports the democratic, secular, and lawful state in Turkey and outlines the principles upheld by the group and the statistics on the time and space the newspapers and television networks allocated to meeting. Under the subtitle "Ombudsman's viewpoint," Sazak asserts: I disagree with the claims that a sensitive approach was not adopted on the meeting. On 16 April, MILLIYET outlined the importance it attached to the meeting by publishing an editorial entitled 'Democracy and Republic Hand in Hand' in addition to the reports and columns that were published on that day. However, trying to describe the newspaper and the Dogan Group as a political side in the clashes between the government and the opposition in excessive criticisms and threatening them with calls for a boycott is an unfair approach. MILLIYET will maintain its independence without yielding to the powerful centres.
Under the headline, "Ingenious ideas to save the regime," YENI SAFAK publishes a front-page report which details some of the "terrific" ideas developed by a committee including academics and jurists to obstruct the presidential election and "save the [secular] regime." The report quotes lawyer Ceyhan Mumcu, a member of the said committee, as saying that the military and the people should join forces as they did in the 27 May 1960 coup and that President Sezer should put pressure on Prime Minister Erdogan to resign. According to the report, the committee is planning to organize a rally in Istanbul similar to the protest rally in Ankara on 14 April.
In an article entitled "Collective Wisdom" on page 7, YENI SAFAK columnist Taha Kivanc (pseudonym for Fehmi Koru) expresses his belief that it is Erdogan's "right" to be elected as Turkey's next president and argues that the process that will be launched by his presidency will enable Turkey to attain true democracy. He claims that this process will cause some tension but that "our expectation for normalization" will be fulfilled in this period. He also asserts that the developments that will follow Erdogan's election will invalidate concerns that under an AKP presidency and AKP government, the foundation stones of the regime will be upset, that bureaucratic positions will be filled by ideologically obsessed people, and that the Constitution will be violated.
In an article entitled "From Tandogan to Malatya", YENI SAFAK columnist Koray Duzgoren links the recent attack on a Christian publishing house in Malatya to the 14 April protest rally in Ankara against Erdogan's possible nomination as president and claims that the carnage in Malatya must have placed those "well-meaning" columnists who refer to the rally as a democratic public event that had nothing to do with militarism in a very embarrassing situation. He asserts that most groups that attended the rally in Ankara consisted of people who see missionary activities and non-Muslim minorities as a threat to Turkey and that the planners of the killing of Catholic priest Santaro in Trabzon, Armenian Turkish journalist Hrant Dink in Istanbul, and the three Protestant missionaries in Malatya are "probably" the same people who organized the rally.
In an article entitled "Letter From Milli Gazete," MILLI GAZETE columnist Necdet Kutsal criticizes the fact that with only two days remaining before the presidential election, it is still unclear who will be elected as president and asks whether there could have been any valid objection to aspirants to the presidency announcing their candidacy months before the election and explaining to the public what kind of a Turkey they envision. He goes on to claim that the procedure Erdogan is following in determining who the next president will be is more typical of a kingdom than a true democracy.
 Press comments on the closure of Nokta magazineIn a column in MILLIYET (23.04.07) Can Dundar laments the closure of weekly Nokta as a result of the pressure it was subjected to. He regrets the failure of politicians to support the freedom of press and asserts: Obviously, censorship is not limited to the collection of publications from the stalls. It can be applied in the form of raiding printing houses, economic pressures, and political threats.
Dundar concludes by expressing the hope that the publication of Nokta will be resumed sometime in the future.
In an article under the title: "A Coup d'état against Nokta," TODAYS ZAMAN (23.04.07) publishes a commentary by columnist Ihsan Dagi who poses the question how a legal system can be possible "where civilian prosecutors can order [a police raid on] a news magazine [Nokta] and [the confiscation of] its documents, including private correspondence, but where civilian prosecutors cannot question and open a case against ... alleged coup plotters."
Ihsan Dagi goes on:
A country that cannot try coup plotters is obviously doomed to be ruled by the oligarchs under a pseudo-democracy.
The government against which these campaigns are alleged to have been directed continues to fail to understand the gravity of the situation. They have kept their silence after each revelation of the Nokta newsweekly: the memorandum about the journalists, the coup diaries and civil society mobilization scheme, all concern activities emerging from within the military that are not tolerable in a normal democracy. How come the government still sits comfortably without saying or doing anything? Isnt it this government that has been trying to bring the civil-military relations to the standard of normal democracies? Isnt it this government that was proud to meeting the Copenhagen political criteria two years ago? By remaining silent, the government and the Parliament encourage future coup plotters and endanger the prospect for democracy and Turkeys place in the EU.
I will repeat myself for the third time: a parliamentary committee should be set up to investigate these allegations. Nothing will come out of judicial proceedings simply because no public prosecutor or judge will dare to take up the issue, as if this is a republic of fear. If not a republic of fear, this is certainly a funny country; permission to investigate a coup plot is asked from the General Staff headquarters. Everyone knows the outcome. Remember what happened when Gen. Buyukanit said the other day that they could not find any official documents confirming the coup attempts. How curious, to look for official documentation of a failed coup? Yet we also know that retired Chief of General Staff Gen. Hilmi Ozkok did not outright deny the claims. Abdullah Gul, deputy prime minister, announced at one stage that they knew all about the plot. Will he and the others within the state informed about these plots not come forward and talk?
Two things are at stake. First, the freedom of expression, without which we cannot get truth and have an open society. I can not imagine a practice that is so recklessly and openly oppressing freedom of expression as if it is staged to discredit Turkeys international democratic credentials.
Second, the ugly reality of coup plots, which have been the greatest obstacle to the consolidation of Turkish democracy for the last 50 years. Unless the coup allegations are properly investigated, some people will continue to think that they can do anything they like against the law, the principles of human rights and the rule of law, and that they can get away with it.
The Nokta affair will, I think, turn into a case through which Turkey and its democratic forces display their determination to eliminate authoritarian elements within the state apparatus and consolidate democratic rule.