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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Press and Other Media, 08-09-10
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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. 173/08 10.09.08
[A] NEWS ITEMS
[B] COMMENTARIES, EDITORIALS AND ANALYSIS
[A] NEWS ITEMS
 Babacan said that Turkeys guarantorship rights are not negotiableTurkish Foreign Minister and Chief EU accession negotiator Ali Babacan gave today (10.09.08) an interview to Murat Akgun in the Turkish private television channel NTV, analyzing current Turkish foreign policy issues among them the Cyprus problem.
When asked to commend on Turkeys guarantorship rights in the light of recent statements made by the Greek Foreign Minister Bakoyiannis and President Christofias that guarantorship is no more needed, it is obsolete and outdated and whether EU guarantorship is accepted by Turkey, Babacan said:
The Guarantee and Alliance Treaties are not subject for this negotiation. The Turkish Cypriots and Greek Cypriots have no authority to discuss between them the Guarantee and Alliance Treaties. Although the Cyprus problem could be considered an issue which will be settled through peace and reconciliation by two communities by way of a partnership state, at the same time the Cyprus issue is related to the security, peace and stability in the east Mediterranean. So Turkeys guarantorship function on the island is indispensable for the security and stability of the East Mediterranean. We are not opening it for negotiations. The safeguarding of this is considered extremely important. As a matter of fact, in the beginning of these negotiations, the British and the Greek Cypriots hastily concluded an agreement regarding the British bases on the island. Just consider a country thousand miles away in order to defend its interests there had to conclude such an agreement with the Greek Cypriots. If this is not a current issue, if we say guarantees are outdated and obsolete, why did you then conclude hastily such an agreement with British? Why did you sign such an agreement? So our position is very clear on this. We do not open this subject for a debate. This is not an issue the two leaders can negotiate. It concerns the Republic of Turkey and it is within the will of the Turkish Republic. This issue is not part of the full-fledged negotiations currently in progress.
 A day before the launch of the full pledged negotiations, the Turkish Cypriot side continues to consider Turkeys guarantorship an inalienable principleTurkish Cypriot Kibris newspaper (10.09.08) reports that the self-styled presidential spokesman Hasan Ercakica, speaking during his regular press briefing referred to the comprehensive direct negotiations to be held between President Demetris Christofias and the Turkish Cypriot leader Mehmet Ali Talat tomorrow and said that tomorrow the leaders will start with governance and power sharing issues. The meeting will start at 10:00 oclock.
Mr. Ercakica said that taking up of the essentials of the Cyprus problem is a historic development and added that the Turkish side will work with full capacity and with constructiveness. He went on and said that the Cyprus problem was created because, as he put it, the Turkish Cypriot people have refused and opted to resist being under the Greek Cypriot rule. The solution of the problem will be possible only by accepting this basic reality and that the settlement efforts should be built on this basis. Therefore, the settlement that will be reached will take as basis the political equality of the two peoples and the equal status of the two founding states.
Referring to the guarantees, Mr. Ercakica said that the new order that will be established should be guaranteed by Turkey. Continuation of Turkeys guarantorship is an inalienable principle and this must be accepted by the Greek Cypriot side, Mr. Ercakica claimed.
Referring to the Orams Case which will be taken up by the European Union Court of Justice, Ercakica said the Court while taking its decision should take into consideration the fact that the Cyprus problem is a political issue and its verdict should not affect negatively this political problem. He went on and said that the Court will consider the issue on 16th September and that the breakaway regime is closely following the case.
 Details on Mehmet Ali Talats contacts in BrusselsTurkish Cypriot Kibris newspaper (10.09.08) reports that the Turkish Cypriot leader, Mr. Mehmet Ali Talat, who arrived in Brussels yesterday for a number of contacts, had separate meetings yesterday with the Turkish, British and Swedish permanent representatives to the EU. During these meetings the new negotiation process and the latest developments in the Cyprus problem were evaluated.
The Turkish Cypriot leader also had a working dinner last night with the EU Enlargement Commissioner Olli Rehn.
The paper further reports that Mr. Talat will give a conference today at the European Policy Centre and after that he will be meeting with the EU Term President Frances permanent representative to the EU Pierre Sellal.
 Turgay Avci accuses the government of the Republic of Cyprus of being provocative and claims that no one has the right to make speculations on the illegal citizenshipsIllegal Bayrak television (09.09.08) broadcast the following:
Deputy Prime Minister Foreign Minister Turgay Avci has accused the Greek Cypriot Government Spokesman Stefanos Stefanou of fait accomplis by talking about settlers and colonization.
In a written statement, Mr. Avci pointed out that despite the launch of negotiations on the 3rd of September towards the solution of the Cyprus problem, Greek Cypriot officials continue their provocative statements through the press.
It is unacceptable that the Greek Cypriot Government Spokesman Stefanos Stefanou who earlier said that the Annan Plan is dead and buried now attempts to limit the number of Turkish origin citizens who will continue to stay on the island by referring to that very Plan, Mr. Avci said.
If a solution is found to the Cyprus problem and a new partnership state emerges, no one has the right to make speculations on the citizenships that were given by the TRNC government within the framework of its laws and international rules, he added.
Mr. Avci said that the Greek Cypriot side is continuing to create artificial and unacceptable agendas instead of focusing on a solution on the island which will be based on the equality of the two founding states, bi-zonality, Turkeys effective guarantee and the political equality of the two peoples.
Meanwhile in a separate statement today, Deputy Prime Minister Foreign Minister Turgay Avci also accused the Greek Cypriot authorities of deliberately issuing wrong statements about the Greek Cypriot schools in the Karpass (occupied Rizokarpasso) region.
Mr. Avci denied the claims by Greek Cypriot side that his Ministry is purposely delaying the issuing of permits to teachers who are to be employed at Greek Cypriot schools in the Karpass region.
He complained that the list of the teachers names which is needed for security reasons- was gradually given to his Ministry and that the delay was the result of Greek Cypriot authorities move.
Mr Avci reminded that the Turkish Cypriot side had adopted a humane approach and allowed the opening of Greek Cypriot schools in Karpass in spite of the Greek Cypriot administrations failure to take any steps towards opening a Turkish school in Limassol.
The Minister also noted that the Greek Cypriot schools in the Karpass region has very high teacher-student ratio, which he said, could be highest in the world.
 Turkish Cypriot daily reveals that an international human trafficking ring acts in occupied CyprusTurkish Cypriot Kibris newspaper (10.09.08) reports that there is an international ring behind the human trafficking recently uncovered in the breakaway regime following the arrest of two so-called policemen on duty in the occupied Tymbou airport.
The paper reports that the two so-called policemen who were arrested the other day were not employed at the immigration department, but at the security unit of the occupied Tymbou airport.
The paper goes on and reports that the so-called police department of the breakaway regime is carrying out the investigation in great secrecy and it had uncovered that there is an international ring behind this human trafficking. The paper further reports that the ring were sending people coming from Turkey and from the Asian countries to the occupied Tymbou airport, from there, these two so-called policemen were taking over and without any passport entry formalities, were whisking away the passengers and helping them to enter the occupied area.
The paper reports that those who are carrying out the investigation, are considering the possibility that other so-called policemen could be involved in this organized international crime ring. The so-called court gave three days remand order pending further investigation for the two suspected so-called policemen.
 The breakaway regime is issuing White Identity Cards to foreignersTurkish Cypriot daily Star Kibris newspaper (10.09.08) reports that the breakaway regime is issuing White Identity Cards to the foreigners who live in the occupied areas of Cyprus and have acquired permanent residence permit. The paper notes that TRNC Identity Card is deceiving everybody and adds that this document facilitates the entrance and exit of the foreigners (mainly coming from Turkey) from the occupied areas. The foreigners take this document hoping that they will acquire all the rights of a citizen except the right to vote, but they cannot carry out any transaction at the state departments.
Foreigners told Star Kibris that until the current government came to power, the foreigners who have work permit for ten years could acquire the citizenship, but now instead of the citizenship they are given White Identity Card.
The director of the so-called population registry department, Yusuf Polili said that the White Identity Card is an identity card given to the foreigners who live in the occupied areas of Cyprus for a long period of time and have acquired permanent residence permit. He noted that the foreigners have no right to vote and added that this identity card gives them the possibility to stay in the occupied areas as long as they want without any additional residence permit and travel freely inside or outside the country.
 Turkeys YOK to support the illegal universities in occupied Cyprus to prepare for the Bologna ProcessIllegal Bayrak television (09.09.08) broadcast the following:
The Minister of National Education and Culture Canan Oztoprak is continuing her contacts in Ankara.
The Minister met with the President of the Turkish Council of Higher Education (YOK) Professor Yusuf Ziya Ozcan.
During the meeting, Mrs Oztoprak and Professor Ozcan exchanged views on ways of increasing cooperation between the YOK and the TRNC universities.
A statement issued from the Ministry said that Mrs Oztoprak welcomed the increase in the quota set for Turkish Cypriot students and in the number of students studying at TRNC universities.
She also stressed the need for the YOK to make it possible for students studying at universities in the Republic to benefit from the amnesty announced by the Council.
She called the Professors support on the issue.
For his part, Professor Ozcan said that existing cooperation between the YOK and the TRNC universities will be strengthened further.
The Professor expressed the Councils readiness to help the universities in the TRNC to improve their educational standards and to make the necessary preparations for the Bologna Process.
 The Chairman of the Turkish Cypriot football federation claims that former board members have accepted to become members of KOPTurkish Cypriot Halkin Sesi newspaper (10.09.08) reports that the self-styled football federation of the breakaway regime convened yesterday. The extraordinary meeting was attended by club representatives that are members to the so-called federation.
The paper further reports that during the meeting, members supported the draft answers that will be given to the FIFA proposals and the club representatives have authorized the so-called federation to make any changes that will be deemed necessary to the proposals. The Chairman of the so-called federation Omer Adal claimed that former board members of the so-called federation had accepted to become members of the Cyprus Football Association (KOP).
 The Saint Anna Church in occupied Famagusta has been destroyedTurkish Cypriot daily Star Kibris newspaper (10.09.08) reports that the Saint Anna Church, which is located in the area within the walls of occupied Famagusta, and an ancient tannery which is one of six not known buildings have lost their historic structure as a result of senseless interventions. Unknown persons built up the doors of the Church with red bricks, not compatible with the building materials of the church.
 Joost Lagendijk calls on Turkish premier not to threaten the mediaTurkish daily Hurriyet newspaper (09.09.08) reported the following:
Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan should not threaten the media who write negative stories about him, Turkey-EU Joint Parliamentary Commission Co-Chairman Joost Lagendijk said Tuesday, assessing the statements of the prime minister who targeted the Dogan Media Group.
The style adopted by the leaders in such problems should not reach the level of threats, Lagendijk told Turkey's Milliyet on Tuesday.
Erdogan's fierce criticism of the Dogan Media organs that have been publishing reports about an ongoing government-linked fraud case has heightened tension in Turkey recently.
A prime minister should not opt for blackmail or suppression of the media, Lagendijk was quoted by Milliyet as saying.
'Media criticism over politicians is a part of political life. Especially if you are a prime minister, you must become accustomed to this,' he said.
'If you think that media published false news about you, the way to solve this is clear. You go to the court,' he added.
Non-governmental organizations (NGOs), including the Turkish Journalists Association (TGC) and the Confederation of Revolutionary Workers Unions (DISK), also backed the Dogan Media Group on Monday, saying Erdogan's remarks brought to the agenda the risks to democracy in the country.
 Turkish Justice Minister approves trial of writer under Article 301Istanbul NTV television (09.09.08) broadcast from Ankara that Justice Minister Mehmet Ali Sahin has conveyed a positive response to the request for permission sent by the Ankara Second Court of First Instance regarding the prosecution case opened against writer Temel Demirer calling for him to be tried for the offence of "publicly denigrating the state of the Republic of Turkey" as set forth in Article 301 of the Turkish Criminal Code (TCK). Accordingly, the trial will continue from the point that had been reached.
The court, in its session of 15 May 2008, had decided that the trial be halted due to the amendment made to Article 301 of the TCK.
The case had been brought against Demirer in accord with TCK Articles 216/1 and 301/1, regarding the crimes of "inciting the public to enmity or hostility, or denigration" and "denigration of Turkishness, the Republic, or the institutions or organs of the state" in his press statement on Yuksel Caddesi in Ankara the day after the killing of Hrant Dink.
Due to the amendment in Article 301 of the TCK, Demirer will be tried with a sentence of from 18 months to five years being sought.
 Turkey plans to launch two new satellitesAnkara Anatolia news agency (10.09.08) reports from Ankara that Turkey plans to launch two new satellites, Turksat 4A and Turksat 5A, in the next six years, Turkey's satellite operator Turksat said on Wednesday.
Turkey's new generation communication satellite "Turksat 3A" was launched in June from French Guiana.
Turksat Director-General Ozkan Dalbay said that former satellite Turksat 1C was replaced by the new Turksat 3A. Dalbay said several national and international TV channels and technology companies had asked Turksat to use Turkey's recent satellite.
"Four TV channels from Kazakhstan are eager to broadcast through Turksat 3A, and a Kazakh data transfer company made a demand too. We are still holding talks with them. But they requested a 10 percent of the capacity. It is impossible. We can only allocate a 4 percent for them because 75 percent capacity of Turksat 3A is full. This rate would reach 95 percent in October," Dalbay said.
Dalbay also said that Turksat started works for a new satellite, Turksat 4A, which is planned to cover north and central Africa.
"So, the coverage area of Turkish satellites will stretch out from eastern coast of the United States to China, and also from Arabian Peninsula to central Africa," he said.
Dalbay said Turksat plans to invite bids for Turksat 4A at the end of 2008 and launch the satellite in 2011.
Turksat also projects to build one more satellite within six years with 100 percent national software. Dalbay said Turksat 5A would be built at facilities of the Turkish Aerospace Industries in 2012 and was planned to be launched in 2014.
[B] COMMENTARIES, EDITORIALS AND ANALYSIS
 EU impressed with Turkish diplomacyUnder the above title, Turkish daily Todays Zaman newspaper (10.09.08) publishes the following commentary by Amanda Akcakoca:
Foreign Minister Ali Babacan will visit Brussels at the beginning of next week for a meeting with the EU Troika (past, present and future EU presidencies plus Foreign Policy Chief Javier Solana).
The Troika meeting offers an opportunity to discuss many foreign policy issues, including the situation in the south Caucasus and the Middle East and the role Turkey is playing in these regions as well as discussing progress being made in Turkey's EU accession talks. Troika meetings do not allow for the opportunity to open negotiating chapters; this will have to wait until the intergovernmental conference planned for December. At that time Turkey is expected to open two chapters -- information society and media and free movement of capital. Turkey clearly has the capacity to do more, but some chapters which are ready to be opened are being blocked. Energy is being blocked by the Greek Cypriots and economic and monetary policy by the French while education and culture is being linked to the chapter on political criteria, which is far from ready to be opened.
There is concern in the EU that Ankara is still failing to turn words into deeds as far as EU reforms are concerned, and the commission would like to see some rapid action before the publication of its annual progress report in November. However, there is no doubt that Brussels has been impressed by Turkish foreign policy recently -- even French President Nicolas Sarkozy seems to be loosening up a bit, which may give a boost to a relationship that has become rather beleaguered.
The historic day-trip of President Abdullah Gul to Yerevan has given Ankara several hundred brownie points. The EU has viewed Turkey's efforts in the region following Russia's war with Georgia as very positive. Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan's shuttle diplomacy between Moscow and Tbilisi and his proposal for a Caucasus stability forum were greatly welcomed, as were the efforts that Ankara put into maintaining calm in the Black Sea, given that Turkey finds itself somewhat caught between the West and Russia. Events in Georgia have acted as a wake-up call to Turkey that it cannot be complacent and needs to play a far greater role in efforts to achieve stability in the southern Caucasus -- not least because of the vital energy corridors which Turkey's needs to ensure if its future as an energy hub is going to materialize. To this end, a top priority of Ankara should be to take a more proactive position vis-à-vis the resolution of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict between Armenia and Azerbaijan in order that it does not lapse into renewed warfare.
Without the tragic events in Georgia it is unlikely that Gul would have made the trip, but now that the door has been opened, momentum needs to be maintained. Normalizing relations will not be an easy task -- demands for Turkey to recognize the Armenian genocide are not going to disappear -- but as the saying goes, great journeys begin with small steps and Gul has now taken that step. The visit will be reciprocated when Armenian President Serzh Sarksyan travels to Turkey on October 14. There will also be meetings on the sidelines of the forthcoming UN Plenary in New York in October with the foreign ministers of Azerbaijan, Armenia and Turkey. In the meantime, President Gul will visit Baku today to discuss developments with Armenia and Turkey's plans for the future.
The EU also has a lot of enthusiasm for the role that Turkey is playing in the Middle East. The US's foreign policy calamities in the region left the door wide open for a new interlocutor, and Turkey has stepped easily into that role, having a greater level of success than had been expected. Turkey's role in the Middle East, like the recent visit of Prime Minister Erdogan to Damascus together with French President Sarkozy and Emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al Thani of Qatar has started to reap some rewards in EU circles, and eyes are beginning to be opened to the key role Turkey can play in this region.
Of course the EU is always looking for more, and Brussels expects Turkey to play a constructive role in the talks on the reunification of Cyprus. Until now Prime Minister Erdogan has supported Turkish Cypriot leader Mehmet Ali Talat, but now that direct talks have begun between Talat and Greek Cypriot leader Demetris Christofias, things will heat up as difficult issues such as governance, power-sharing, security, guarantors and settlers come to the table. With midterm elections in March, a sceptical military and an opposition dead set on not giving 'one stone' of Cyprus away, Erdogan may have to make some difficult choices. However, success is crucial to Turkey's relations with the EU.
 From the Turkish Press of 09 September 2008Following are the summaries of reports and commentaries of selected items from the Turkish press of 9 September:
a) Reactions to Erdogans stand regarding scandals:
A report in Hurriyet details the scandals related to the Justice and Development Party (AKP). According to the report, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan is under pressure because of the land re-zoning deal involving AKP's Saban Disli, the Lighthouse charity fraud case, two re-zoning scandals in Gaziantep, and the arrest of AKP Batman provincial leader for tender corruption deals.
Hurriyet reports on a written statement issued by Press Council President Oktay Eksi on the accusations that have been levelled against the Dogan Media Group. The statement notes that these accusations are viewed as an "indication of new and restrictive policies aimed against the media." The report adds that the Turkish Journalists Association, in a statement on the issue, has called on the prime minister to change his stand aimed at curbing the freedom of expression.
Commenting on the Turkish Prime Minister's reaction to the Lighthouse charity fraud case in an article in Milliyet, Fikret Bila asks whether Erdogan is trying to silence the media and to cover up the incident. Given the gravity of the accusations, the prime minister should have referred the issue to the Inspection Council of the Prime Minister's Office and to the Turkish judicial authorities, Bila says, adding that it is very easy for the inspectors of the Prime Minister's Office to find out whether the alleged money have been transferred to the accounts of the Prime Ministry and whether anyone has taken possession of the said monies on behalf of the Office. Criticizing the fact that the prime minister chose to react to the allegations by accusing Aydin Dogan of the Dogan Media Group who is not the source of the reports concerning the case, Bila reminds the prime minister that the source of the allegations is the German judicial authorities and the person who brought these allegations to the attention of the Turkish public is the leader of the main opposition party, adding: "Nowhere within this process does Aydin Dogan appear." Referring to Erdogan's blackmail threats, Bila urges the prime minister to disclose any information he might have on Dogan's wrongdoings if he possesses such information. Noting that Dogan has also urged the prime minister to disclose any such information, Bila concludes by saying: "However, the method used by the prime minister is problematic from the viewpoint of democracy and the freedom of the press."
Under the banner headline, "Dogan Sold Out," Yeni Safak publishes a front-page report which asserts that the Dogan media group shares on the stock market have dropped rapidly in the wake of Prime Minister Erdogan's "sharp response" to businessman Aydin Dogan in connection with reports in the Dogan news media linking Erdogan to a corruption case in Germany involving a charity called Deniz Feneri (Lighthouse). According to the report, Dogan shares fell by eight percent on a single day despite a general increase in domestic and global stocks, a situation which has been attributed to Erdogan's remark that he will make disclosures about the Dogan group in a week.
In an article entitled "A Sad Situation", Yeni Safak columnist Fehmi Koru asserts that nobody supports Aydin Dogan in his latest row with the Erdogan government except his own family and "those who earn their bread by working for him." He claims that while columnists for the Dogan dailies are confident that they will win again as they did in confrontations with earlier governments, there are major differences between the latest dispute and former disagreements between governments and news media tycoons that should cause a lot of alarm to Aydin Dogan. "I do not mean only the fact that Tayyip Erdogan is distinguished from former politicians by his combative personality. I also mean the fact that the ruling AKP is unlike any former governments in terms of the amount of public support it enjoys. And it is quite obvious that we are going through a period when politics and politicians have become more powerful."
In an article entitled "If Hurriyet Says It", Vakit columnist Abdurrahman Dilipak asserts that Aydin Dogan has "zero chances" of winning the latest "war" between his news media group and the Erdogan government and that while the Hurriyet daily's allegations of corruption against Prime Minister Erdogan are inconsequential and designed to "distort" the truth, Erdogan has a serious case against Aydin Dogan and could put him in a tight spot if he orders audits against Dogan concerns and submits the dossiers at his disposal about the financial activities of the Dogan Group to prosecutors. He also cites Dogan's alleged involvement in oil smuggling as his "weakest spot."
In an article entitled "Government and Media wash their linen", Today's Zaman columnist Andrew Finkel asserts that "to those watching from the sidelines," the latest row between Prime Minister Erdogan and the Dogan media group is "not a dispute from which one side or the other will emerge the victor but a form of attrition that will harm both parties, the sort of thing that happens when thieves fall out."
b) Kurdish Issue:
In an article in Vatan, Rusen Cakir views the reasons why the PKK continues to launch its attacks despite the assessment being made to the effect that it is on the verge of collapsing. If the organization continues to be effective despite the crises within the PKK, this means that it receives the support of the people, Cakir assesses.
Ortadogu columnist Yildiray Cicek, in an article, welcomes the visit paid by General Basbug to the southeast as a good beginning toward unifying the army and the people. Accusing the government of making plans aimed at separating the Kurds from the Turks, Cicek draws attention to government statements that Diyarbakir will be turned into the centre of the Greater Middle East Project and to "plots being hatched through the alliance of the United States, the AKP, Barzani, and Talabani in the region." Noting that great duties befall the Turkish Armed Forces, (TSK), in safeguarding the regional people against these plots, Cicek advises that the adamant struggle against terror be accompanied by concrete projects regarding the social structure in the region. Arguing that a strong educational and economic structure in the region can deal a heavy blow on terror, Cicek believes that "the warm heart and hand extended by the TSK can strengthen the investments to be made in the region."