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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Press and Other Media, 08-10-09

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. 193/08 09.10.08

[A] NEWS ITEMS

  • [01] Nami: The Greek Cypriot leader tries to undermine the May 23rd agreement
  • [02] The General Secretary of CTP replied to the criticism made regarding Talats statement to PACE
  • [03] Avci stated that the Cyprus Report of PACE cannot be accepted
  • [04] A new unit for the electricity power plant in occupied Trapeza area arrived in the occupied areas of Cyprus
  • [05] Soyer stated that the prices in the occupied areas are as high as in the free areas of the Republic
  • [06] The self-styled municipalities union to protest against the government for not giving to them the financial aid of Turkey
  • [07] The self-styled minister of public works and transportation, Salih Usar, is going to Turkey for contacts
  • [08] Turkish and Finnish Presidents hold joint press conference; Reference to Cyprus
  • [09] Turkish and Czech companies sign energy agreement
  • [10] Erdogan and Blair met in Ankara
  • [B] COMMENTARIES, EDITORIALS AND ANALYSIS

  • [11] From the Turkish Press of 08 October 2008

  • [A] NEWS ITEMS

    [01] Nami: The Greek Cypriot leader tries to undermine the May 23rd agreement

    Illegal Bayrak television (08.10.08) broadcast the following from occupied Lefkosia:

    Evaluating the negotiations process to the BRT Newsroom, President Mehmet Ali Talats special advisor for the Cyprus negotiations process Ozdil Nami said that the comprehensive negotiations process was starting again after an intense preparatory phase.

    He said everything was going as planned.

    Responding to speculations that negotiations on power sharing and governance were not going too well and that the negotiations process was failing, Mr. Nami said circles who think that the two leaders can come to an agreement on power sharing and governance just after 3 meetings, is living in a fantasy world. They must be more realistic.

    Explaining that the issue of executive authority had only been discussed for two meetings, Mr. Nami said that a list, present in the Annan Plan, has been made.

    He said the two sides were putting forward their opinions regarding the list and changes they wanted made to the lists.

    He reminded there was no requirement or condition to finalize all issues before moving forward on the negotiations process.

    Stressing that it was not right to evaluate the whole negotiations process just based on the two meetings that have taken place, Mr. Nami said very important agreements had been reached between the two leaders during the negotiations process, something which should be kept in perspective.

    Commenting on the negative statements of the Greek Cypriot leader Dimitris Christofias, Mr. Nami said when the Greek Cypriot leader said equal founding states he was actually trying to undermine the 23rd of May agreement that was reached between the two sides.

    Referring to the issues of guarantees, he said the Turkish Cypriot people must feel protected and safe and therefore could not foresee any system absent from Turkeys effective and active guarantee.

    Explaining that it was the first time the Greek Cypriot side had questioned the issue of guarantees during the negotiations process, Mr. Nami reminded that the first thing agreed between the sides in the past were the issue of guarantees.

    Ozdil Nami concluded by saying there was a greater chance of reaching a solution than not reaching one itself during the negotiations process.

    [02] The General Secretary of CTP replied to the criticism made regarding Talats statement to PACE

    Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris newspaper (09.10.08) reports that Omer Kalyoncu, the General Secretary of the Republican Turkish Party (CTP), replied to the criticism made regarding the statement made by the Turkish Cypriot leader, Mr Mehmet Ali Talat, to the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE), and especially on the criticism that Talat supported two separate states.

    Noting that in a solution to be reached in Cyprus the Greek Cypriots will administer the one of the founding or the constituent states, and the Turkish Cypriots the other, Mr Omer Kalyoncu said that this is the A, B, C, of the solution of the Cyprus problem.

    Mr Kalyoncu stated that there are attempts both by the leftists and the rightists to reduce the value of the statement made by the Turkish Cypriot leader to the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE), and added that he too listened to Mr Talats statement and he did not understand that he put forward the two separate states and the confederation.

    Mr Kalyoncu criticized the former Turkish Cypriot leader, Rauf Denktas, who said that Mr Talat should not have accepted PACEs invitation, because he was not invited as the President of the TRNC. He also criticized the statements of the General Secretary of United Cyprus Party (BKP) Izzet Izcan that Mr Talat referred to his statement to a two-states solution in accordance with the plans of the Justice and Development Party (AKP) for a two-states solution in Cyprus.

    Referring to the terms founding and constituent, Mr Kalyoncu stated that if there is a difference in the meaning of the two words in Turkish, this a problem to be solved by linguists. Mr Kalyoncu said that the agreement will be signed in English, therefore, there is no difference if in Turkish the one or the other words are used.

    (CS)

    [03] Avci stated that the Cyprus Report of PACE cannot be accepted

    Turkish Cypriot daily Vatan newspaper (09.10.08) reports that the self-styled minister of foreign affairs, Mr Turgay Avci stated that the Cyprus Report of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE), cannot be accepted. Mr Avci, who was participating in a program of the Genc TV Channel last night, stated, inter alia, that the statement of Mr Talat to PACE was very important and that it showed one more time that the side which has never rejected the solution of the Cyprus problem was the Turkish Cypriot side. Mr Avci stated that the reaction of the Greek Cypriot side prior to Talats statement was normal and that the Greek Cypriot side was uneasy that the realities of Cyprus were to be explained.

    Mr Avci also said the Greek Cypriot side is trying to pull the solution of the Cyprus problem under the EU umbrella, but the Turkish Cypriot side sees the UN as the place for the solution of the Cyprus problem.

    Criticizing further the Cyprus Report of PACE, Mr Avci stated that the report has negative elements for the Turkish Cypriot side and added that it makes no reference to the referendum and the fact that the Turkish Cypriots expressed their will for solution. Mr Avci also criticized the report for making references to the Greek Cypriot properties in the occupied areas of Cyprus but no references to the properties of the Turkish Cypriots in the free areas of the Republic.

    (CS)

    [04] A new unit for the electricity power plant in occupied Trapeza area arrived in the occupied areas of Cyprus

    Turkish Cypriot daily Star Kibris newspaper (09.10.08) reports that the 6th unit to be established in the electricity power plant in occupied Trapeza area has arrived in the occupied port of Famagusta. The self-styled minister of finance of the breakaway regime, Ahmet Uzun stated that within the next month the production of electricity will exceed the consumption needs of the occupied areas. Mr Uzun noted that on October 17 they would complete the tender for building an electricity power plant in the capacity of 100 megawatt. The plant will be built by the private sector with the build-operate-transfer method.

    He said that their power generating capacity will be increased so much that they will be having an extra power plant of 80 megawatt and added that they will have power even if one of their electricity power plants breaks down.

    After a year, if the Greek Cypriots want, we will come to the point of being able to sell electricity to them, he noted.

    (ITs)

    [05] Soyer stated that the prices in the occupied areas are as high as in the free areas of the Republic

    Turkish Cypriot daily Halkin Sesi newspaper (09.10.08) writes that Ferdi Sabit Soyer, the self-styled prime minister of the occupation regime in statements prior to the council of ministers meeting yesterday afternoon stated that the kitchen and cleaning products in the occupied areas are definitely cheaper than the goods in the free areas of the Republic of Cyprus.

    Mr Soyer said that some circles try to make the Turkish Cypriots believe that the goods in south Cyprus, as he called the free areas of the Republic, are cheaper than in the TRNC, but this is not true. He said that shopping from south Cyprus means shopping from Europe and added that the prices in the occupied areas are high but not as high as in the free areas.

    In addition Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (09.10.08) writes that the Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Tradesman and Craftsmen stated that the occupied areas are cheaper than the free areas and added that the prices are not the reason why the Turkish Cypriots do their shopping in the south.

    (CS)

    [06] The self-styled municipalities union to protest against the government for not giving to them the financial aid of Turkey

    Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris newspaper (09.10.08) writes that Kemal Bulutoglulari, the self-styled chairman of the municipalities union and mayor of occupied Lefkosia, stated that the union decided to protest on the 16th of October against the self-styled government which did not keep the promises it gave to the municipalities. Mr Bulutoglulari stated that the municipalities face financial problems because the government did not raise its financial assistance to them and as a result the municipalities lost 52 million New Turkish Lira. Mr Bulutoglulari also said that the money which was envisaged from the Turkish embassy, for municipalities projects, were spent by the self-styled government.

    Kibris writes that replying to Bulutoglularis criticism, the self-styled Minister of Interior, Ozkan Murat, stated, inter alia, that the government helped like no other government the municipalities.

    (CS)

    [07] The self-styled minister of public works and transportation, Salih Usar, is going to Turkey for contacts

    Turkish Cypriot daily Star Kibris newspaper (09.10.08) writes that the self-styled minister of public works and transportation, Salih Usar, is going to Turkey for contacts today. Mr Usar will participate in the Informatics Summit 2008 and in the Foreign Trade Logistics Conference. In the framework of his contacts Mr Usar will meet with the Turkish State Minister, Kursat Tuzmen and the Turkish Minister of Transport, Binali Yildirim. Mr Usar will be escorted by the self-styled general director of the telecommunication department, Feridun Ustun. He will return to the occupied Cyprus on the 17th of October.

    (CS)

    [08] Turkish and Finnish Presidents hold joint press conference; Reference to Cyprus

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (08.10.08) reported the following from Helsinki:

    Turkish President Abdullah Gul said Wednesday that, if the Turkish Parliament extended by one year the Turkish Government's mandate to order military strikes against the PKK terrorist organization in northern Iraq, such an authorization would only target the terrorists.

    President Gul and his Finnish counterpart Tarja Halonen held a joint press conference following their tête-à-tête meeting in Helsinki on Wednesday.

    Reminded by a Finnish journalist about the Prime Ministry motion that will be debated at the Turkish Parliament on Wednesday to extend by one year the government's mandate to order military strikes against the PKK terrorist organization in northern Iraq and asked whether the "Kurdish issue" or the "European Union (EU) issue" was important for Turkey, Gul replied that 'if the parliament makes a favourable decision to extend the period, this would not take place to bomb the Kurds.'

    'The Kurds are a part of Turkey. Turkey embraced the Kurds in north of Iraq when they were attacked by chemical weapons. Turkey is the country that helps north of Iraq the most. 4,000 Turkish trucks carry goods to be used by the residents of north of Iraq on a daily basis,' Gul said.

    'However, there are shelters of terrorist PKK organization in mountainous areas which can not be controlled by north of Iraq. PKK has been described as a terrorist organization by NATO and the EU. We must distinguish between the Kurdish people and PKK terrorist organization. In the past few days, the terrorists crossed into Turkey and attacked on Turkish security forces. Several attacks were staged in big cities. Any authorization for future military operations in north of Iraq would only target the terrorists,' Gul said.

    'Membership in the EU and the fight against terror complement each other. EU membership is a state strategy of Turkey and the priority is to complete the membership negotiations,' Gul noted.

    'Membership in the EU will not be an obstacle in the fight against terror. On the contrary, there is solidarity in the EU in the fight against terror and this solidarity must grow further,' Gul said.

    Turkish president said Wednesday his country would continue to make necessary reforms to become a member of the European Union.

    'Turkey is willing to continue its accession negotiations with full determination. Our membership process is a process of far deep rooted reforms and it will remain to be so.

    This is the transformation process of Turkey,' Abdullah Gul told a joint press conference in Helsinki with his Finnish counterpart, Tarja Halonen.

    Halonen praised in return Turkey's reforms which he said would strengthen democracy and good governance.

    'Finland wants to see Turkey in the European Union in the shortest possible time after clearing the path of problems,' Halonen said.

    Responding to a question on the Cyprus issue, the Finnish president said the Cyprus was an issue of the United Nations.

    'This is a UN process and the EU has made contributions. It is the parties who will settle the issue, but the Cyprus issue is an issue of the UN,' Halonen said.

    [09] Turkish and Czech companies sign energy agreement

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (08.10.08) reported the following from Ankara:

    Turkeys Premier Recep Tayyip Erdogan welcomed the energy agreement signed Wednesday between Czech Cez and Turkey's Akenerji companies, expressing his hope that it would contribute to relations between the two countries.

    Following delegation and tête-à-tête meetings, Erdogan and his Czech counterpart Mirek Topalenek held a joint press conference in Ankara.

    Erdogan thanked Czech Republic for its continuing support for Turkey's EU bid and said he believed this support would continue after Czech Republic resumed the rotating EU Presidency in the first half of 2009.

    Erdogan said as of 2007 the trade volume between the two countries was 1.5 billion USD and expressed his expectancy that it would reach 2 billion USD by the end of the year.

    Erdogan invited entrepreneurs from the two countries to cooperate in the fields of energy, tourism and construction.

    Czech Cez and Turkey's Akenerji companies signed a strategic partnership agreement based on equal partnership.

    Initially, Cez will pay 303 million USD for 37.4 percent shares of Akenerji. A press release issued by Akenerji said the two companies planned an investment of 3 billion USD and increase their electricity production to 3,000mw until 2013.

    [10] Erdogan and Blair met in Ankara

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (08.10.08) reported the following from Ankara:

    Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan met with the former Prime Minister of the United Kingdom Tony Blair in Ankara on Wednesday.

    Erdogan's meeting with Blair took place at the Prime Ministry Official Residence and was closed to the press.

    Blair is a special representative of the United Nations in the Middle East. He is active in campaigns related to climate change and poverty in Africa.


    [B] COMMENTARIES, EDITORIALS AND ANALYSIS

    [11] From the Turkish Press of 08 October 2008

    Following are the summaries of reports and commentaries of selected items from the Turkish press of 08 October 2008:

    a) Kurdish Issue:

    A report by Aydin Hasan in Milliyet states that Chief of Staff Gen Basbug held a meeting with six expert academicians at the General Staff Headquarters "on the issues of terror and clashes, political psychology, and international relations." According to the report, Ercan Citlioglu, the chief consultant of the Eurasian Strategic Research Centre, ASAM; Dr. Ihsan Bal, an administrator of the International Strategic Research Institution, USAK; Ali Nihat Bal, an expert in terror and clashes from the Turkish Economic Policies Research Fund; Prof Ali Caglar, a lecturer on international relations; Prof Deniz Ulke Aribogan, an expert in international relations from the Bahcesehir University; and Prof Abdulkadir Cevik, head of the psychiatry desk at the Ankara University Medical Departments, attended the five-hour terror summit.

    Assessing the Kurdish issue in an article in Milliyet, Taha Akyol points out two trends, one being the separatist nationalist one and the other that of integration. Noting that from the 2002 elections to the elections held in 2007, the votes of pro-PKK parties declined from 20 percent to 14 percent in eastern Anatolia and from 25 percent to 18 percent in the southeast, Akyol expresses the belief that the issue of terror and the future of the country depend on whether the dynamics of separatism or integration will prove to be stronger.

    The writer goes on to note that there are millions of citizens of Kurdish origin who are not separatists but who are sensitive with regards to their ethnic identity and stresses the importance of pursuing policies that embrace these citizens, thus shrinking the grassroots of terror, a policy which Akyol praises the Justice and Development Party, AKP, for implementing. In conclusion, Akyol calls on Republican People's Party, CHP, leader Deniz Baykal and Nationalist Action Party, MHP, leader Devlet Bahceli to increase their votes in the southeast.

    Viewing the options of the government in the struggle against terror in a an article in Milliyet, Fikret Bila writes that it will either fulfil the requests expressed by the military amending the laws pertaining to the fight against terror or it will continue with the current laws. No matter which option it chooses, the government will have to pay a political price, says Bila, adding that it will either be criticized for violating human rights or it will be censured for not being effective in its fight against terror. Recalling the meeting to be headed by Prime Minister Erdogan with the participation of the commanders on 9 October, Bila states that the requests of the military as well as MHP leader Bahceli's proposal to establish a buffer zone will be discussed at that meeting. Stressing the difficulty of implementing the Bahceli proposal, Bila argues that the participation of Iraq and the United States is necessary for establishing such a zone. In conclusion, Bila recalls the hesitation expressed by General Igsiz regarding such a buffer zone, noting that one should well consider the military units and the number of vehicles and equipment to be allocated to the zone as well as the cost of establishing it.

    According to a report in Vatan, CHP leader Baykal, participating in a program moderated by Ahmet Hakan in CNNTurk, has claimed that the Turkish-Iraqi border is not a natural one, proposing that it be readjusted. Baykal is also reported to have said that it is Turkey's right to demand US support in its fight against terror.

    Commenting on the Aktutun attack in an article in Referans, Cengiz Candar writes that neither the party of Talabani nor that of Barzani control the region from where the attacks were launched, adding: "The PKK attacks were launched from 'PKK land' and not from the region under the control of the Kurdish administration in north Iraq." Warning of the futility of blaming the Iraqi Kurdish administration for the attacks, Candar criticizes Baykal for stating the obvious but not proposing an applicable solution and asks: "The Kurdish administration in Iraq and Baghdad are unable to put an end to the PKK attacks from regions that are under their authority and sovereignty as stated on paper. What should Turkey do?" Assessing the proposal that Turkey enter the region under PKK control including Kandil and stay put, Candar says: "This might be a 'formula.' However, it might be a formula of 'entering a quagmire." As a solution, Candar proposes rapprochement and closer relations between Ankara and Arbil and the implementation of the "strategic partnership" protocol signed with Baghdad in July. Stressing the importance of cooperation with the United States, Candar advises the implementation of every step that the PKK is against.

    Criticizing the excuse that the Aktutun outpost was not transferred elsewhere because of a lack of funds in an article in Vatan, Yigit Bulut questions how come the government had the funds to pay an annual $50 billion in interest, to extend a $3 billion advance to Germany for a defence contract, and to write off the income tax debts of foreign banking groups while it could not spare the funds for the transfer of the outpost that became the grave of 17 soldiers. The writer calls on the Turkish Armed Forces, TSK, to explain whether the government did not extend the funds or whether the TSK could not allocate the required amount for the transfer of the outpost from its own funds.

    According to a report in Yeni Safak entitled "NGOs Object to Partial Emergency Rule on Human Rights Grounds", several NGOs have raised objections to the General Staff's demands for expanded military powers in combating the PKK, saying that Turkey would turn into a police state if the AKP met these demands.

    In an article entitled "What Terrorism is Trying To Force", Vakit columnist Serdar Demirel asserts that the PKK attack on the Aktutun outpost is set to influence the Constitutional Court in favour of closing down the DTP in the ongoing lawsuit against this party. He cautions that the closure of the DTP would strengthen the PKK's hand, enabling it to spread the propaganda that spilling blood is the only way of solving the Kurdish issue as well as allowing it to try to incite a Kurdish-Turkish conflict.

    In a commentary entitled "Would the Government Fall Into This Trap?", Zaman writer Mehmet Yilmaz cautions the Erdogan government against making changes to the Counterterrorism Law that would undermine democracy. He claims that the latest PKK attack is aimed at misleading the Government into restricting fundamental freedoms with the result that the people of the southeast are alienated once again. He also links the terrorist attack on Aktutun to certain "strategic" and "political" plans regarding the local elections in March, 2009, the closure lawsuit against the DTP, the impending bill extending the Government's authority to order cross-border operations into northern Iraq, the AKP's investment policies in eastern and southeastern Turkey, and the ongoing "warm dialog" between Turkish government officials and northern Iraqi Kurdish leaders.

    Under the headline, "Strategist Goksel Makes Shocking Allegation," Milli Gazete carries a report which highlights remarks by "strategist" Erhan Goksel, the owner of the VERSO research company, accusing the Erdogan government of keeping on hold for the past three years bidding for a $40-50 million project for the electronic monitoring of terrorist groups.

    b) Economy:

    According to a report in Milliyet, the markets have begun to feel the pinch of the financial crisis. While sales of real estate and luxury cars have dropped drastically, the consumer confidence index that was 80.1 percent in August of 2008, dropped to 75.3 September, the report adds. Sales in shopping centres in Istanbul are reported to have dropped between 5 to 10 percent, the report notes, adding that the sale of housing units ranging between 100-350,000 Turkish Lira have come to a standstill. While sales of cars have dropped by 40 percent, the price of flats for rent has also dropped by 10-12 percent, the report concludes.

    Viewing the global economic crisis in an article in Ortadogu, Ulvi Izzet sums up the situation as follows: "Economies that have entered a deep coma are being kept alive as a result of the supervision and the constant intervention of the emergency units. Since the market has lost its capacity to function on its own, every problem is being referred to the protection of the state." Assessing the situation in Turkey, Izzet believes that the deficiency in diagnosing the problem in time has led to a lack of sound and lasting measures to counter the crisis. Those who have a difficulty in grasping that the good days are over can even claim that the crisis will provide an opportunity for the country, Izzet writes, adding that all economic indices and reports indicate an approaching chaos, one that will be exacerbated because of the indifference of the government.

    c) Freedom of the Press:

    In an article in Hurriyet, Ertugrul Ozkok asks the AKP government whether the media in Turkey will be free in line with the EU criteria or it will resemble Iraq where journalists are even murdered for publishing corruption cases such as in the case of the journalist who reported on claims that Barzani was involved in widespread corruption.

    ES/


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