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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Press and Other Media, 10-06-09

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. 106/10 09.06.10

[A] NEWS ITEMS

  • [01] Eroglu welcomed UNSGs draft report on the UNFICYP
  • [02] Atlasjets proposal for the illegal Turkish Cypriot airlines was stolen; The DPs lawsuit was rejected; Serdar Denktas said DP will reconsider its support to the UBP self-styled minority government
  • [03] A delegation of the Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Commerce and the Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Industry are holding contacts in Ankara
  • [04] Illegal GAU to open a campus in occupied Rizokarpaso
  • [05] Fashion TV channel to promote the occupied areas of the Republic of Cyprus
  • [06] Two deputies joined CHP
  • [07] Turkey and Russia signed a nuclear cooperation deal
  • [B] COMMENTARIES, EDITORIALS AND ANALYSIS

  • [08] From the Turkish Press of 8 June 2010

  • [A] NEWS ITEMS

    [01] Eroglu welcomed UNSGs draft report on the UNFICYP

    Illegal Bayrak television (08.06.10) broadcast the following:

    The TRNC President Dervis Eroglu has repeated that the Turkish sides goal is to conclude the Cyprus negotiations by the end of this year. Criticizing the Greek Cypriot leader Demetris Christofias for postponing last weeks face-to-face meeting, President Eroglu said: 'It will not be possible to reach a settlement by the end of the year if Christofias does not attend the talks by setting a statement I issued as an excuse'.

    Speaking during a visit paid to him today, the President said that despite the Greek Cypriot sides tricks, the Turkish side had no intention of abandoning the negotiation table.

    'We are sitting at the table to reach a solution. Only time will tell if we shall be able to solve the problem. Im saying its wrong to abandon the negotiation table just because you are disturbed by a sentence included in a statement', he added.

    Referring to the UN Secretary Generals draft report recommending the extension of the UNFICYPs mandate, the President welcomed the reference made in the report to an end of year deadline for the talks.

    He complained that the Greek Cypriot side is against timetables and arbitration, but warned that the talks cannot be continued forever.

    [02] Atlasjets proposal for the illegal Turkish Cypriot airlines was stolen; The DPs lawsuit was rejected; Serdar Denktas said DP will reconsider its support to the UBP self-styled minority government

    Turkish Cypriot midweek Cyprus Today newspaper (09.06.10) reports the following:

    A legal challenge to a tender paving the way for Atlasjet to take control of Cyprus Turkish Airlines failed yesterday amid claims hundreds of workers face the axe.

    The Democrat Party (DP) had tried to stop the partnership contract being handed to the Turkish firm on Monday with leader Serdar Denktas claiming the tender was illegal and that CTA was 'being sold on the cheap'.

    Yesterday, Lefkosia District Court rejected the bid to stop the contract. The CTA board was due to meet last night to discuss the Atlasjet offer, with a planned protest outside the Lefkosia headquarters of the airline.

    Mr Denktas accused the National Unity Party (UBP) government of failing to do enough to save CTA, which is reportedly more than $100 million in debt. He also said that his party would now reconsider its support for the minority UBP government.

    Last month, the CTA board had explored the potential for bankruptcy before the government stepped in. It invited eight Turkish companies to bid to become a partner in the airline, but it was reported only Atlasjet had responded.

    Formed in March 2001 and based at Istanbuls Ataturk International Airport, it boasts 11 aircraft and flies to 17 destinations, including Ercan [occupied Tymvou], Croatia, Egypt, Greece, Iraq and Moldova and five other Turkish cities. It was due to be handed a five-year contract to turn around the fortunes of CTA.

    It is unclear whether the government will write off the $60 million-plus debt CTA owes to banks and leave Atlasjet to come up with a plan to tackle the estimated $40 million operational debts.

    Public Works and Transport Minister Hamza Ersan Saner stressed the government had no plan to sell off CTA, but admitted that it could not afford to pay for the lease of an aircraft in the airlines six-strong fleet.

    The deadline for the payment passed on Monday night and this was one of the reasons why the tender happened so quickly, he said.

    Buran Atakan, chairman of the airline workers union Hava-Sen, said any management partnership taking control of CTA overseas would deal a fatal blow to the TRNC economy.

    The controversial tender could see the minority government face a vote of no confidence, with DP and the Freedom and Reform Party (ORP), which had offered full support to UBP, both critical of the way the tender has been handled.

    A vote on the tender can be held and it can be potentially reversed, but this cannot happen within 90 days and UBP are expected to win the June 27 by-election created by the move of former prime minister Dervis Eroglu into the presidential palace. This would give UBP a 50-50 split of seats in Parliament, enough to stave off any vote of no confidence. Ferdi Sabit Soyer, leader of the main opposition Republican Turkish Party (CTP), described the two-day tender as 'unacceptable' and 'tantamount to declaring the TRNC a fifth class country'.

    ORP leader Turgay Avci said he was very concerned by the speed of the tender and the lack of information being made public.

    Meanwhile, under the title Atlasjets proposal was stolen, Turkish Cypriot Afrika newspaper (09.06.10) reports that the envelop with the proposal of Atlasjet Company for establishing a partnership with the illegal Turkish Cypriot airlines (CTA) was stolen yesterday from the premises of the company. The administrative council of the illegal CTA met yesterday at 17.00 hours in order to evaluate the proposal of Atlasjet. According to the paper, after long-lasting debates, Fikret Cavusoglu, chairman of the council, and one other member of the council went to take the envelop with the proposal of Atlasjet, but found nothing in the tenders box.

    Moreover, Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris newspaper (09.06.10) refers to the same issue and reports that the administrative council of the company could not take any decision after the disappearance of the proposal of Atlasjet. Under the title The employees are resisting, the paper writes that everybody waited for the decision of the court yesterday regarding the lawsuit filed by the Democratic Party (DP).

    After the stealing of the proposal, the police interrogated the three guards of the building of CTA.

    The self-styled council of ministers convened extraordinarily last night after the disappearance of Atlasjets proposal, reports Kibris. The self-styled prime minister, Irsen Kucuk stated that during the meeting, they decided to continue their contacts with Atlasjet.

    After the meeting, Yakup Latifoglu, chairman of HUR-IS trade union said they would evaluate the issue of going on a general strike in the public sector. Furthermore, KAMU-IS trade union is expected to hold a meeting today on the issue of the CTA.

    Arslan Bicakli, chairman of the Cyprus Turkish Laborers Trade Unions Federation (TURK-SEN), accused the self-styled government of trying to give away their national carrier showing as pretext that the company is making losses. He asked from the government to solve the issue in an objective and transparent manner and in dialogue with the trade unions.

    Under the title A dizzying day, Kibris reports also that the protests of the employees lasted for hours yesterday in front of the building to the CTA while the administrative council of the company was meeting. The Republican Turkish Party (CTP), the Democratic Party (DP), the Freedom and Reform Party (ORP), the Social Democracy Party (TDP) and Ejder Aslanbaba, independent self-styled MP expressed their support to the employees.

    In his statements, Serdar Denktas, leader of the DP, said that even if the way of the court has been closed, they will continue their struggle using all democratic means. He noted that the CTA is a company which belongs to the Turkish Cypriot people and argued that when the tender is completed and the agreement is signed, the company will stop being the national carrier of the Turkish Cypriots.

    Ferdi Sabit Soyer, chairman of the CTP, called on the breakaway regime to follow the example of the Republic of Cyprus and the United Kingdom. He noted that the two national airlines of the Republic of Cyprus will be merged because they are making losses and their losses will be paid by the state, while the UK is not considering of closing down the British Airways in spite of the fact that the company is making losses.

    Mehmet Cakici, chairman of the TDP, said that somebody is responsible for the situation today, as a company which had no debts five years ago, now is being given away because it owes 100 million US dollars.

    Meanwhile, Murat Ersoy, chairman of Atlasjet Airlines administrative council said they have been interested in the CTA for a long time and that they have been holding discussions for three years. In statements to Kibris, Mr Ersoy noted that they have submitted a proposal for the CTA, that the politicians will evaluate it and decide and that every day that this decision delays the company loses at least one million US dollars.

    Mr Ersoy rejected the allegations that the conditions of the tender regarding the CTA were prepared according to Atlasject and added that when their proposal is opened everybody will see that they suggested cooperation with the CTA because they believe that the necessary conditions for the continuation of the current operation of the company could be met. He noted that some circles secure profit from the CTA because they buy tickets in prices lower than the cost and sell them at a price four or five times higher. He said that the company made also some agreements which are not profitable. Otherwise, is it possible for an airline with five airplanes to suffer 50 million-dollar losses in one year? he wondered.

    He noted that they have been discussing the issue for three years, that they prepared their proposal as a result of long-lasting discussions with a delegation consisting of five ministers and that they informed the Turkish government of their intention to participate in the tender. He noted that the CTA will not be sold and that their project is to strengthen the company and return it after five years.

    (I/Ts.)

    [03] A delegation of the Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Commerce and the Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Industry are holding contacts in Ankara

    Turkish Cypriot daily Star Kibris newspaper (09.06.10) reports that a delegation under the chairman of the Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Commerce (KTTO), Gunay Cerkez, and the chairman of the Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Industry (KTSO), Ali Cirali is paying a two-day visit to Ankara for contacts.

    According to the paper, the delegation met with the chairman of the Union of Chambers and Commodity Exchanges of Turkey (TOBB), Rifat Hisarciklioglu and the Turkish State Ministers, Mehmet Zafer Caglayan and Cemil Cicek.

    The development of the trade between Turkey and the occupation regime and the cooperation between businessmen, prior to the solution of the Cyprus problem and in case a solution is reached, were discussed during the meeting.

    (CS)

    [04] Illegal GAU to open a campus in occupied Rizokarpaso

    Turkish Cypriot daily Gunes newspaper (09.06.10) reports that the illegal American University of Keryneia (GAU) is to open a new campus in occupied Rizokarpaso, where an eco-village and a research institute will be established through the investment of CAU.

    The above statements were made by the rector of the illegal GAU, Prof. Dr. Yildirim Oner during a meeting held on Tuesday between a delegation headed by the chairman of the illegal GAU board, Serhat Akpinar, and the self-styled minister of national education, youth and sport, Nazim Cavusoglu.

    Noting that within the framework of the project, a preparatory school is to launch its operation in September 2010, Mr. Akpinar stated that June 17th is set as the date for the beginning of the GAU Rizokarpaso Campus project. He, further, added that after the necessary permissions are received, eco-friendly buildings will be constructed in the region and will be operated by the use of renewable energy resources.

    (ML)

    [05] Fashion TV channel to promote the occupied areas of the Republic of Cyprus

    Turkish daily Sabah newspaper (09.06.10), in its insert under the title, Gunaydin, reports that the Fashion TV channel, which broadcasts in 197 countries and reaches to 350 million houses, is preparing to promote the occupied areas of the Republic of Cyprus.

    According to the paper, the Fashion TV will cooperate with Rocks Otel, which is located in occupied Cyprus, and on June 13th, a fashion party will be organised. With this party, the TRNC will be promoted to 197 countries. In this way, the voice of the TRNC, which faces problems in global promotion due to the international political obstacles, will be heard, the paper writes.

    (EA)

    [06] Two deputies joined CHP

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (08.06.10) reports the following from Ankara:

    Two independent parliamentarians joined the main opposition party on Tuesday.Independent MPs Harun Ozturk and Huseyin Pazarci became members of the Republican People's Party (CHP) in the party's gathering at the parliament.

    Thus, the number of CHP MPs reached 101 whereas the number of independent MPs dropped to 8.

    On June 1, Emrehan Halici and Kamer Genc joined the CHP in the first parliament gathering of the party after Kemal Kilicdaroglu was elected the new chairman on May 22.

    Below is the most recent distribution of seats in the parliament:AK Party 336

    CHP 101MHP 69BDP 20Independent 8DSP 6DP 1TP 1Vacant 8TOTAL 550(AK Party stands for the ruling Justice & Development Party, MHP for the Nationalist Movement Party, BDP for the Peace and Democracy Party, DSP for the Democratic Left Party, DP for the Democrat Party, TP for the Turkey Party).

    [07] Turkey and Russia signed a nuclear cooperation deal

    Turkish daily Todays Zaman newspaper (online, 09.06.10), under the title Turkey cements regional cooperation with Russian energy deal, reports the following:

    Only one day after the signing of three critical natural gas supply deals with Azerbaijan, Turkey has taken yet another step to intensify efforts to emerge as an energy hub in the region.

    Turkey and Russia signed a nuclear cooperation deal in Istanbul on Tuesday during the third summit of the Conference on Interaction and Confidence-Building Measures in Asia (CICA). The Turkish Atomic Energy Agency (TAEK) and Russias Federal Service for Ecological, Technological and Nuclear Supervision (ROSTECHNADZOR) signed the deal. Turkish Energy Minister Taner Y1ld1z and Russian Deputy Premier Igor Sechin signed the agreement at a ceremony held at Istanbul s C1ragan Palace.

    Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his Russian counterpart, Vladimir Putin, also attended the ceremony. The agreement foresees information and know-how exchange on the licensing of nuclear facilities and activities. Under the agreement, TAEK and ROSTECHNADZOR will cooperate in the areas of regulations for licensing and supervision, protection from radiation, management of the quality of nuclear facilities, radioactive fuels and fuel waste management, safety regulations for nuclear/radioactive materials and radioactive wastes, emergency reaction and readiness and training for supervisory personnel.

    Erdogan stated at a joint press conference with Putin in Istanbul that the government would make multidimensional relations with Russia a priority in foreign policy and that 'we aim to raise our trade volume to $100 billion in the next five years'. Erdogan said Turkey receives a great deal of its natural gas from Russia and that Turkey would take new steps towards the using more natural gas in industry. Putin stated that natural gas from the Shah Deniz field 'is not enough to meet the planned Nabucco pipelines needs'. Mondays deal with Azerbaijan will allow Baku to export gas to Europe via Turkey.

    Underlining that Russia respects the Turkish sides right to diversify energy routes, Putin said they concentrated particularly on some previously outlined projects that will increase Russian natural gas exports to third countries via Turkey. Turkey and Russia are currently discussing building an oil pipeline from Samsun on the Black Sea coast to the Mediterranean port of Ceyhan and a gas pipeline that will run underneath the Black Sea, called Blue Stream 2. Cyprus, Israel and other countries in the Middle East are expecting natural gas from this project as well.

    Turkeys relations with Israel are in tatters after Israel killed nine Turkish peace activists on board an aid vessel en route to the blockaded Gaza Strip. Putin said the projected pipeline would not be extended to Israel 'due to extra financial burdens'.

    Meanwhile the two countries yesterday also signed a joint declaration on tourism in Istanbul.

    Meanwhile, Turkish Energy and Natural Resources Minister Taner Y1ld1z said on Tuesday in Istanbul that Parliament would vote within a few weeks on a deal with Russia to build Turkey s first nuclear power plant. 'The agreement we signed on the construction of the nuclear plant will be submitted to Parliament for approval within the next two to three weeks', he told reporters.

    On the same issue, Hurriyet Daily News newspaper (online, 08.06.10), under the title Israeli pipeline deal could be scrapped, Putin says, reports, inter alia, the following by Fulya Ozerkan:

    Turkey and Russia say the Blue Stream II gas project may not be extended to Israel, but for different reasons. While Russian Prime Minister Putin cites decreased Israeli demand for the energy, Ankara was already threatening to suspend energy cooperation in the wake of Israel's raid on an aid flotilla last week

    The proposed Blue Stream II natural-gas pipeline may no longer extend to Israel -- originally envisioned as a key customer -- Russia's prime minister said Tuesday, citing economic rather than political concerns.

    Vladimir Putin's remarks came after Turkey said it would shelve all energy-cooperation deals with Israel unless the country apologizes for the attack on a Gaza-bound aid ship that killed eight Turks and one American of Turkish descent.

    'The problem is different', Putin told a joint news conference with his Turkish counterpart, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, on the sidelines of a regional security summit in Istanbul. 'Israel, according to the data available, has found natural gas on its own continental shelf. Therefore I think Blue Stream II may not be extended to Israel because of economic concerns'.

    Seemingly contradicting Ankara's position, the Russian prime minister made clear Israel's exclusion from the project would be unrelated to what he called 'the tragic incidents' sparked by the deadly Israeli raid last week.

    Putin, however, declined to speculate further on the issue, saying only, 'The basic issue is Israel may not need this gas that much'.

    'This issue is not on our agenda', said Erdogan, in response to the same request for additional information.

    A senior Russian diplomat told the Hurriyet Daily News & Economic Review that Israel had been anticipated as a major recipient of the natural gas to be shipped from Blue Stream II.

    'Under the current circumstances, it would not be rational to implement the project because there would be no big market for the gas supplies', said the diplomat, who wished to remain anonymous.

    In March 2009, Turkey and Russia agreed to establish a working group for the realization of the Blue Stream II project, which aims to transport Russian gas to the Middle East, including Israel, via Turkey. The project foresees the construction of a new pipeline in parallel to the current Black Sea route Blue Stream, through which Russian gas supplies are transported to Turkey.


    [B] COMMENTARIES, EDITORIALS AND ANALYSIS

    [08] From the Turkish Press of 8 June 2010

    Following are the summaries of reports and commentaries of selected items from the Turkish Press of 8 June 2010:

    Turkish-Israeli Crisis

    A column by Rasim Ozan Kutahyali of Taraf focuses on Fethullah Gulen's remarks criticizing the organizers of the aid campaign for failing to receive the permission of Israel before sending the flotilla to Gaza. Noting that the issue was extensively discussed by the guests at a dinner party given by columnist Fehmi Koru and his spouse, Kutahyali argues that the "pro-Israeli" daily Wall Street Journal, which published the controversial Gulen interview, might have distorted his remarks in an effort to create a rift between the Justice and Development Party, AKP, Government, and the Gulen Movement. Noting his disagreement with Gulen's warning that the Humanitarian Aid Foundation, IHH, should have asked for the approval of the Israeli Administration before it sent the flotilla to Gaza, the columnist describes the aid campaign as an initiative launched in the name of "conscience and justice" and says that "Fethullah Gulen should support this initiative and movement." The columnist welcomes the pro-Gulen media's moderate editorial policy in the aftermath of the incident and notes: "Fethullah Gulen and Tayyip Erdogan are the best role models for the future, peace, freedom, and welfare of the Islamic world... Our country is passing through a critical process and certain circles are looking forward to a rift between the Gulen Movement and the AKP during this process... The deep state in Israel and the Ergenekon organization are eagerly waiting for such a development... The conscientious alliance in Turkey should not fall for that ploy."

    According to Radikal columnist Oral Calislar, Fethullah Gulen's remarks show that he is "against the escalating tension between Turkey and Israel" and he believes "this tension might harm the developments in the region." His remarks can also be seen as a "warning to the government," Calislar says in his article. Describing Gulen as a cautious leader who is aware of the consequences of his statements, the columnist asserts that he may also be concerned over the impact of Turkey's Iran and Israel policy on the relations between Ankara and Washington.

    In the second part of his article in Milliyet, Taha Akyol focuses on the question as to whether a pro-HAMAS policy will strengthen Turkey's image in the world. Recalling that the West supports Turkey only if it condemns the Gaza embargo and the Israeli violence, the columnist says that "Ankara should build its policy on these two issues in order to be able to achieve positive results." He warns that the discussion as to whether HAMAS is a terrorist organization or not will reduce the global support for Turkey's thesis as this is a matter of discussion even in the Arab world. Akyol adds that Turkey's position will strengthen in the international arena if it manages to show that it makes every effort to have HAMAS quit its violent policies.

    Hurriyet Daily News carries an article by Semih Idiz who criticizes the AKP Government for supporting the IHH action behind the scenes. He asks: "How can such a large country as Turkey with interests in four continents, and with an export and investment driven economy requiring extra caution all around the globe be dragged to the brink of war by a nongovernmental organization?" Idiz also opposes the government's use of Islamic slogans while accusing the Israeli Administration.

    According to a report in Taraf, sources from the Office of the Prime Minister confirmed a report in Jerusalem Post that Prime Minister Erdogan has taken action to mediate for the release of Israeli soldier Gilat Shalit who was kidnapped by HAMAS in 2006. Taraf quotes the unnamed sources as saying that the steps taken for the release of the soldier is a "humanitarian initiative" and the outcome of the mediation efforts is expected to be seen in a few days.

    In an article entitled "There, I wrote it", Yeni Safak columnist Fehmi Koru, writing under the pseudonym Taha Kivanc, highlights the warnings of an unidentified source about the implications of the latest tension between Turkey and Israel for Turkish-US relations. Koru quotes his "alarmed" source as having told him that the search for a new government in Turkey has intensified as a result of what is perceived as a major shift in Ankara's foreign policy under the ruling AKP.

    In an article entitled "End this ignominy", Yeni Safak columnist Ibrahim Karagul calls for the cancellation of military agreements between Turkey and Israel that allow Israeli pilots trained in Turkey to use Turkish airspace in conducting air strikes against countries like Syria or enable Israel to carry out intelligence operations in Turkey, set up surveillance stations along Turkey's border with neighbours like Iran, etc. He asks what sort of "joint interests" could be cited as justification for such "dishonourable" agreements and urges the Government to bring the architects of the 28 February process to account for "sharing Turkish taxpayers' money with Israel" and "making Turkey dependent on Israel."

    In an article entitled "Can Turkey not cancel all agreements signed with Israel?", Vakit Editor-in-Chief Hasan Karakaya criticizes the Erdogan government's decision to suspend all military and commercial agreements with Israel as an "inadequate" response to the Israeli military operation against the Gaza flotilla and statements by Israeli officials warning that any ships attempting to deliver relief supplies to Gaza without authorization will be sunk. Karakaya calls on the Government to "ditch" or "even burn" all agreements with Israel and announce that relations will not return to normal until Israel has lifted its blockade of Gaza and made a pledge to maintain peaceful ties with regional countries including "Palestine." He also warns the Government about the possible effects of new CHP leader Kemal Kilicdaroglu's latest "propaganda" campaign aimed at representing Deputy Prime Minister Bulent Arinc's remarks about a recent statement by Fethullah Gulen as evidence of the ruling AKP's pro-Israeli stance.

    In an article entitled "Could Israel topple the AKP?", Zaman columnist Ihsan Dagi asserts that war with Israel is a scenario Turkey should definitely avoid and that success in any confrontation with Israel requires not using Israel's methods. He claims that the Israeli state, the radical wing of the Jewish lobby, and the neo-cons in Washington appear determined to go out of their way to start a process that will lead to the AKP's removal from power by representing it as an anti-secular administration pursuing neo-Ottoman policies. He also advises the Erdogan government to keep using Turkey's "soft power" as a builder of regional peace and cooperation in response to these efforts.

    In an article entitled "TSK's perspective on PKK-Israel relations", Today's Zaman columnist Emre Uslu calls attention to "rumors" that Deputy Chief of the Turkish General Staff Aslan Guner held a meeting with a group of journalists some time ago to "inform" them of a "link" between Israel and the PKK's terrorist attacks in Turkey. Uslu claims that it is because the military holds Israel responsible for some of the PKK's attacks that Prime Minister Erdogan is "raising his voice in criticizing Israel."

    (b) Kurdish Issue

    An article by Milliyet columnist Can Dundar draws attention to the messages sent by Abdullah Ocalan through his lawyers from the Imrali prison, saying that Ocalan warned Prime Minister Erdogan by stressing that as he quit his mediation efforts, the "war lobby" might resume its activities as it did in the past when some of the former leaders tried to take solid steps toward the solution of the Kurdish issue. Recalling his remarks that the prime minister either refrains from challenging the "war lobby" or plans to reconcile with it, the columnist asserts that Ocalan believes "Erdogan has taken action to establish his own deep state when he realized that efforts are underway to remove him from power." According to Ocalan, Dundar notes, his elimination might have three consequences: 1. The Turkish state might suffer serious casualties because of the PKK attacks. 2. Karayilan might declare an autonomous state similar to that of Chechnya, Kosovo, and even the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus. 3. Uncontrolled groups might carry out terrorist attacks independently of the PKK. Drawing attention to the increasing PKK attacks, the columnist urges the government to take a lesson from the events of the past and prepare for the possible developments.

    /ES


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