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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Cypriot and Turkish Media Review, 10-12-30

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 CYPRIOT AND TURKISH MEDIA REVIEW No. 249/10 30.12.10 C O N T E N T S

[A] TURKISH CYPRIOT PRESS

  • [01] The Turkish National Security Council discusses steps to be taken in Cyprus
  • [02] So-called prime minister censures ELAM actions
  • [03] Racism debate continues; Afrika points out to fascism and racism in the occupied areas
  • [04] CTP's women organization: An entire community should not be blamed for a handful of fanatics
  • [05] Difficulties in the establishment of the new aviation company
  • [B] TURKISH PRESS

  • [06] Davutoglu: "Our next target is to make Turkey the wise man of humanity"
  • [07] "Babacan says all UN Security Council seats should be subject to voting"
  • [08] Syrian President receives deputy chief of Turkish General Staff
  • [09] Turkish and Bosnia-Herzegovinian high-ranking officials meet in Istanbul
  • [10] Erdogan: "Turkey will end 2010 with 6.8% growth rate"
  • [11] Work on draft bill on professional army has been completed
  • [12] Turkish parliament to debate new law to end violence in sports
  • [13] Highlights

  • [A] TURKISH CYPRIOT PRESS

    Reference to Cyprus in the statement after the last meeting of the Turkish National Security Council for 2010, statements by Irsen Kucuk before the meeting of the "council of ministers", debates on the allegedly "escalating racism and fascism" in the government controlled areas of Cyprus, problems regarding the establishment of the new aviation company in the place of bankrupt "Turkish Cypriot airlines", and other internal issues are the main topics covered by the Turkish Cypriot press today. The press also refers to the economy of the breakaway regime and the situation in the market in the eve of the New Year.

    [01] The Turkish National Security Council discusses steps to be taken in Cyprus

    Under the title "Statement by the MGK on Cyprus: New steps which could be taken on the Cyprus issue were discussed", Turkish Cypriot daily Vatan (30.12.10) reports that the Turkish National Security Council (MGK) held yesterday its last meeting for year 2010 under the presidency of Abdullah Gul. In a written statement after the meeting, MGK emphasized on the unity of the state in Turkey and the use of the Turkish language. "Efforts to change this reality are unacceptable," noted the statement, adding that developments in the Cyprus problem were also discussed by MGK.

    According to the paper, the statement said the following on the Cyprus problem:

    "Steps, which could be taken in the coming period in order to reach a just, lasting and comprehensive solution on the island, were evaluated. It was emphasized that reaching a solution at present is not possible because of the delaying tactics of the Greek Cypriot side in spite of all the efforts exerted by the Turkish side to reach the target of a 'comprehensive solution by the end of 2010' which had been set by the UN Secretary-General. And the UN Secretary-General's dissatisfaction on this issue is shared [by MGK]. It was underlined that Turkey, which acts on the understanding that the necessary ground for a comprehensive solution the soonest in Cyprus exists and that this opportunity should be evaluated, will continue to give full support to the ongoing negotiating process and the constructive efforts of the TRNC president, esteemed Eroglu."

    (I/Ts.)

    [02] So-called prime minister censures ELAM actions

    According to illegal Bayrak television (online 29.12.10), the so-called prime minister Irsen Kucuk strongly criticized the Greek Cypriot extreme right-wing group, National People's Front (ELAM), for carrying out violent attacks against a Turkish basketball team during a game last week. He said that it was not possible to perceive the extreme right group which advocated that the island is Greek, as sympathizers of Turkish Cypriot existence on the island.

    Speaking before a meeting of the so-called council of ministers, Kucuk said that Demetris Christofias has yet to display the positive and constructive stance at the talks as displayed by Dervis Eroglu. Kucuk said that the alarming rise in racial attacks in "south Cyprus" and the emergence of extreme right wing groups such as ELAM, are important issues which need to be addressed. He said that such racial attacks, which came at a time when the UN Secretary-General is trying to bring the two leaders together, clearly demonstrate that the Greek Cypriot side is not sincere at the negotiating table and that it does not want a solution in Cyprus. "The world should acknowledge this message," he added.

    Also referring to his contacts in Ankara, which mainly focused on the economy, Kucuk said that Turkey welcomed the results of the latest austerity measures taken in the occupied areas of Cyprus.

    Explaining that a 4% growth has been recorded in the "TRNC" economy for 2010, Kucuk said that there has been a 15% increase in the number of tourists visiting the "TRNC" via air travel. He also noted that the occupancy rate of the hotels in the country has reached a hundred per cent due to the New Year holiday.

    [03] Racism debate continues; Afrika points out to fascism and racism in the occupied areas

    Some Turkish Cypriot newspapers today (30.12.10) continue to refer to the issues of "escalating racism in the south" part of Cyprus, as they describe the demonstration held the night before last in Larnaka by National People's Front (ELAM).

    Kibris, the only paper which covered the issue yesterday, refers to ELAM's demonstration under the banner front-page title "Night of shame" and writes that the police of the Republic of Cyprus are accused of "turning a blind eye" to the "fascist demonstration of racist ELAM organization in Larnaka".

    Gunes covers the issue under the front-page title "Racism escalates in the south, the Turkish enemy ELAM organization made a show of power".

    Under the banner front-page title "They are being organized", Halkin Sesi reports, inter alia, the following: "ELAM, which started racist attacks in the south, held an activity in Larnaka. Even the Greek Cypriot press used titles such as 'night of shame'. Members of ELAM shouted racist slogans in the streets of Larnaka and carried Greek flags".

    Yeni Volkan reports that the members of ELAM shouted slogans such as "Cyprus is Greek, Turks out of Cyprus".

    Writing in his daily column in daily Afrika, Sener Levent refers to the news published yesterday in Kibris under the title "Fascism has risen again in the south". Under the title "Why are you amazed gentlemen?" Sener Levent said he read the news published in Kibris in order to understand how fascism has come back from the dead in the government-controlled areas of Cyprus, but he could not understand it, because there was nothing extraordinary as the same things happen in the occupied areas of Cyprus as well. He points out, inter alia, the following:

    "...We have been used to these pictures for many years now in the north. If the Greek Cypriot side started these things only recently and entered into this climate only recently, it means that it lagged far behind us.

    It is said that huge Greek flags were carried during the march in Larnaka. So, if Turkish flags are carried here why should they not carry Greek flags? Do those who put a gigantic flag on the mountains that can be seen from every house in Lefkosia, have the nerve to condemn the Greek Cypriot young people because they held a demonstration with Greek flags? If a demonstration with Greek flags in the south is racism and fascism, then what should be said for those in the north who go to bed and wake up with the Turkish flag? Moreover, absolutely nothing is done in the north without the Turkish flag. There are flags of the TRNC and flags of Turkey in the offices of our ministers. Do even our most leftist parties hold rallies during the elections without waving Turkish flags? Turkish flags are hung even on preachers' lecterns. The flag is everywhere here. Except in our underpants. Even the name of our national radio and television is Bayrak [Tr. Note: Bayrak in Turkish language means flag]. Some days ago a march full of the Turkish flags was held in the streets of Lefkosia. Besides that, there were people on horsebacks. They held huge Turkish flags in their hands. Very well, why has not the newspaper, which used the headline 'fascism has come back from the dead in the south', used the same headline for the news regarding our young people as well?

    They said that the Greek Cypriot young people were dressed in black shirts. So, are the young people who are members of the National People's Movement here dressed up in white shirts? Do they not prefer the same colour? Is it ok when the Turkish young people dress in black and go out in the streets and when the Greek young people do the same they are fascists?

    It is said that in Larnaka they carried a placard saying 'Cyprus is Greek'. Why are you amazed? Does not everybody in the north shout everyday that 'Cyprus is and will remain Turkish'? And are you not amazed at this. Now, why you are amazed when the Greek Cypriot young people say that 'Cyprus is Greek'? Look at the papers. Did not the streets in the north resound with the slogan 'Cyprus is and will remain Turkish' even last week? However, for some reason you did not call them racist and fascist. You considered this to be very normal. And now you are saying that 'fascism has risen from the dead in the south'. If it has risen from the dead in the south, it means that here in the north it has never been buried...

    When the chauvinistic actions in the south are criticized, things should not be left to get out of hand. The degree of criticism should be regulated. And what is most important of all is to see our own situation as well. Do those who go to sleep and wake up with the [Turkish] flag here have the right to get angry with the Greek flags in the south? Do those who shout here that 'Cyprus is and will remain Turkish' have the right to call racists those who shout that 'Cyprus is Greek' in the south? The actual issue is to be able to oppose both of them. Neither they nor our (youth) know what they do. If you do not have enough courage to oppose both of them, at least be quiet gentlemen."

    (I/Ts.)

    [04] CTP's women organization: "An entire community should not be blamed for a handful of fanatics"

    Turkish Cypriot daily Yeni Duzen (30.12.10) reports that Sibel Sorakin, chairperson of the Republican Turkish Party ? United Forces (CTP-BG) women's organization in a statement yesterday protested against the "fascist mentality which caused the incidents" after the recent basketball game between the teams of APOEL and Karsiyaka. She also condemned statements made by Gulin Kucuk, self-styled prime minister Irsen Kucuk's spouse, on the events.

    Sorakin noted that the duty of women is to raise young people who love each other and know how to share with each other in peace, and not [raise] separatists.

    "Just like we do not accept the incidents after the game, we do not consider that it is correct to generalize [and because of] handful of fanatic racist group accuse a whole community', she noted.

    Meanwhile, Turkish Cypriot daily Gunes (30.12.10) reports that National Unity Party's (UBP) women organization in a statement yesterday accused the CTP women organization of "protecting the Greek Cypriots who engage in racist and fascist attacks". The statement argued that "the incidents cannot be underestimated".

    (I/Ts.)

    [05] Difficulties in the establishment of the new aviation company

    Turkish Cypriot daily Star Kibris (30.12.10) reports that the private sector withdrew its interest in establishing a new aviation company with the breakaway regime and the Turkish Airlines, replacing of illegal Turkish Cypriot airlines which went bankrupt. The paper writes that the partnership agreement for the new company was expected to be signed today, but this was postponed when meetings held on the issue last night ended without a result.

    Citing information obtained from reliable sources, Star Kibris reports that the shareholders of the new company who come from the private sector, and mainly Suat Gursel [Tr. Note: Founding Rector of the illegal Near East University (YDU)], withdrew from the company.

    In statements to Ada television, Ersan Saner, self-styled minister of public works and transport, said yesterday that the establishment of the new company has been postponed for next week. He stated that one businessman withdrew from the agreement on the grounds that the conditions for investment were not appropriate.

    (I/Ts.)


    [B] TURKISH PRESS

    The Turkish press today focuses on the results of a meeting of Turkey's National Security Council (MGK), which convened under the chairmanship of President Abdullah Gul, President Gul's two-day visit to the southeastern province of Diyarbakir, statements by Turkish FM Davutoglu that they aim to make Turkey the "wise man" of the world, as well as statements by Turkish PM Erdogan on the country's economy. Moreover, a meeting of the deputy chief of Turkish General Staff with the Syrian President, the decision of the Turkish government to speed up efforts to introduce a long-expected law on preventing sports hooliganism and game fixing, reports that the draft law to hire 50,000 professional soldiers has been submitted to the office of the prime minister, and other internal issues are also highlighted in the press.

    [06] Davutoglu: "Our next target is to make Turkey the wise man of humanity"

    Turkish daily Today's Zaman (30.12.10) reports on statements of the Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu who said that Turkey aspires to transform itself into a country speaking out for justice and standing up for its principles, sort of a wise man of the world.

    Describing Turkey as one of the countries that best blends values of the East and the West, Davutoglu said it has the means to provide solutions and guidance at times of conflict. "Our next target is to make Turkey the wise man, the wise country of humanity, the world, to make it a country the views of which are respected, which has principles, is the voice of human conscience and stands up for its values," Davutoglu said in an interview with state broadcaster TRT on Tuesday night. "This will be the target for 2011."

    The foreign minister noted that in May Turkey will host a UN summit of the Least Developed Countries, a group of 49 nations that exhibit the lowest indicators of socioeconomic development. He said hosting this summit is a reflection of Turkey's desire to represent the conscience of humanity in the face of global political injustices.

    [07] "Babacan says all UN Security Council seats should be subject to voting"

    Under the above title, Turkish daily Today's Zaman (30.12.10) reports on statements of the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of State for Economy Ali Babacan who said that the representational ability and the legitimacy of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) are controversial, calling for a representational change to the body.

    "There were five appointed seats on the International Monetary Fund (IMF) Executive Board. Why? Because the countries that had certain economic power had taken the seats following World War II. We made a decision at the last G-20 meeting and now everybody can have a seat through elections," Babacan said on Tuesday at a meeting of the Foreign Economic Relations Board (DEIK), referring to an IMF reform that led to developing countries having a greater say on a more representative Executive Board through a shift in voting power.

    "We want to see this also in the UN Security Council. Five countries that were the winners of World War II have permanent seats. The reputation of such a structure is always debatable in world public opinion, and its ability to represent has always been controversial. Its level of legitimacy is also questionable," Babacan said. "We believe that a change within a certain period of time, just like with international finance organizations, is important," he said, noting that Turkey will gradually intensify efforts to pave the way for such a change.

    [08] Syrian President receives deputy chief of Turkish General Staff

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (29.12.10) reported that the Syrian President Bashar al-Assad met with the Deputy Chief of the Turkish General Staff Aslan Guner in the Syrian capital Damascus on Tuesday.

    Al-Assad and Guner discussed cooperation between the Syrian and Turkish armies and the steps achieved through the cooperation in various fields. Talks dealt with expanding cooperation and coordination between the two friendly armies and the importance of strategic dialogue on the military level, stressing that this dialogue is one of the main components of the strategic relations between Syria and Turkey which constitute an example for relations among countries. In addition, the two sides discussed joint military training carried out by units from both armies and the possibility of expanding them to create common concepts in the face of various challenges.

    The meeting was also attended by Deputy Chief of General Staff of the Syrian Arab Army Gen. Munir Adanof and the Turkish ambassador in Damascus.

    Guner also met with Deputy Commander General of the Army and Armed Forces and Minister of Defence Lt. Gen. Ali Habib, and Chief of the General Staff Lt. Gen. Dawood Rajiha.

    [09] Turkish and Bosnia-Herzegovinian high-ranking officials meet in Istanbul

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (29.12.10) reported that Turkey's Transportation Minister Binali Yildirim came together with the Bosnia-Herzegovina Prime Minister Mustafa Mujezinovic and Minister of Traffic and Communications Nail Seckanovic during a working dinner in Istanbul on Tuesday.

    "Turkey and Bosnia-Herzegovina are trying to boost their relations in recent years," Yildirim told reporters after the dinner. Yildirim said Bosnia-Herzegovina's prime minister and minister of traffic expressed their will to boost cooperation between Turkish and Bosnian businessmen and investors. "2011 will be the year of giant leap forward for Bosnia-Herzegovina and Turkey," Yildirim said.

    For his part, Mujezinovic said a general frame agreement was reached on a 700-km highway and a 3,500-kw hydroelectric electric power plant to be constructed in Bosnia-Herzegovina. He said it was time for investments in Bosnia-Herzegovina, and invited everyone to invest in his country.

    [10] Erdogan: "Turkey will end 2010 with 6.8% growth rate"

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (29.12.10) reported from Ankara on statements of the Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan during his last 2010 televised address to the nation. Erdogan said that Turkey would end the year 2010 with a 6.8% growth rate, noting that international organizations had forecast Turkey's year-end growth figure around 8%. "All these figures are clear evidence of how a robust and dynamic economy Turkey has become," Erdogan said.

    He said that Turkey's economy grew 6% in the last quarter of 2009, however this rate climbed to 11.7% in Q1 of 2010 and 10.3% in Q2 of 2010. "This is a fairly striking growth performance when compared with bankruptcy news all around the world," Erdogan noted. He said with this achievement, Turkey has become the number one most-rapidly growing country in Europe, and the number four in the world. Erdogan also said international rating organizations raised Turkey's rating by two-levels.

    "Turkey also continued to increase its exports and tourism revenues, and direct investments climbed to 22 billion USD," he said, adding that Turkey's industrial production index broke all-time record in October and reached 128.9%. "Turkey's manufacturing industry was up 6.1 points to 75.9% year-on-year in November 2010," he said, noting that "this figure is the highest recorded since the global crisis, and indicates that things have started to get on the right track in industry."

    Erdogan said Turkey's inflation remained at 7.3% in November 2010 despite adverse global conditions. The Turkish prime minister also said Turkey had not taken any loans from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), but paid back a great deal of the debts of previous governments. "Turkey's debt to IMF was around 23.5 billion USD in 2002, but dropped to 6 billion USD in October 2010," he said.

    Erdogan, inter alia, said that the budget of 2011 had been prepared, taking into consideration that dynamism and determination.

    [11] Work on draft bill on professional army has been completed

    Turkish daily Today's Zaman (TZ ? 30.12.10) reports on statements of the Turkish Defence Minister Vecdi Gonul who announced that his ministry has completed work on a draft bill for partial transition to a professional army with the employment of thousands of salaried soldiers in the military. Gonul said that the bill will be discussed in the first Cabinet meeting in 2011.

    According to the bill, 50,000 soldiers will be employed in the first phase. They will be selected among applicants who are at least elementary school graduates and who have performed their 15-month compulsory service.

    TZ, inter alia, reports that military service in Turkey is compulsory for all male citizens over the age of 20. Service is deferred for students until completion of their studies. The duration of compulsory service varies --depending on the conscript's level of education-- between 6 and 15 months. There has been a growing call from the public to establish a professional army and launch a new strategy in the fight against terrorism.

    [12] Turkish parliament to debate new law to end violence in sports

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (AA ? 29.12.10) reported that a draft law submitted to Turkish Parliament last Tuesday brings legal changes to stop violence at sports events. According to AA, the parliament is expected to adopt the long-awaited draft law early next year.

    The new law was tabled following recent violence at a football game between old-time rivals Galatasaray and Fenerbahce. Turkish Football Federation urged lawmakers to pass the new law as soon as possible. The draft law on "Prevention of Violence and Disorder in Sports" brings heavy penalties for perpetrators of violence inside and outside a sports venue.

    [13] Highlights

    Following are summaries of reports and commentaries of selected items from the Turkish press of 29 December 2010:

    a) Kurdish issue / Democratic autonomy project

    Hurriyet columnist Ertugrul Ozkok views the proposal he calls the "Autonomous Democratic Kurdish Region" and argues that the idea of an autonomous region based on ethnicity in the southeast can lead to similar formations in other regions, a development which he says he does not view as a "nightmare scenario".

    According to a report in Taraf entitled "Bilingual Life in Cizre", the BDP Municipality of Sirnak's Cizre District has begun to implement bilingualism by replacing Turkish municipal signs with ones written in both Turkish and Kurdish. This was followed by a press release in both languages issued by the district official and his deputy, adds the report.

    b) Ankara's aspirations to acquire nuclear energy / Turkey's Iran policy

    In an article in Hurriyet Daily News entitled "Turkey is unaware its policies are abused by Iran" Barcin Yinanc maintains that the AKP government's aspiration to acquire nuclear energy is shaping its policy regarding Iran's nuclear programme and explains: "In Davutoglu's eyes, the restrictions imposed on Iran's efforts to acquire nuclear energy are not only motivated by the desire to stop nuclear weapon proliferation, but also by a wish to restrict any other countries' attempt to get nuclear energy for peaceful purposes." Drawing attention to the imbalance in Turkish-Iranian trade relations, Yinanc argues that Turkey's policies are being abused by Teheran.

    Referring to the meeting on Iran's nuclear problem to be held in Istanbul in January, Milliyet columnist Sami Kohen underlines: "The important aspect of the Istanbul meeting is that the negotiations are continuing and that, at the same time, the Teheran Agreement, which Turkey realized together with Brazil, is still on the agenda." The goal of these negotiations is not to deprive Iran from generating nuclear energy to meet its economic needs, but to prevent it from producing nuclear weapons, notes Kohen, concluding: "Ankara's belief is that Iran might be persuaded to reach conciliation through engagement and not through isolation. The Istanbul meetings will be a test in this regard."

    c) Turkish-Israeli relations

    In an article in Milliyet entitled "Signs of detente in Turkish-Israeli relations", Semih Idiz draws attention to the active efforts currently being exerted to improve bilateral relations, adding that Israeli Foreign Minister Lieberman's counter-efforts indicate that there are differences of views on the issue within the Israeli Foreign Ministry. Agreeing that there is no love lost between the two countries, Idiz, however, adds: "One can say that 'real politic' has overridden the personal desires of the AKP that pursues an 'idealist' foreign policy." Noting that Turkish-Israeli relations closely concern regional and global balances as well as their relations with third countries such as the United States, Idiz writes that it would not be wrong to assume that the Obama Administration, which has been exerting behind-the-scenes efforts in favour of Turkey on the Armenian genocide bill, will want a payback.

    Writing in Radikal, Erdal Guven notes that Israel has no intention of apologizing for the flotilla incident, pointing out that contrary to the expectations of the Turkish government and the claims of the Turkish media, the Israeli government is not divided on the issue. Noting that Turkey has indexed the future of bilateral relations to an apology and to the compensation of the flotilla victims, Guven concludes that the further deterioration of relations has now become inevitable

    d) Turkey's EU bid

    In an article in Star, Mensur Akgun views the foreign policy assessment Davutoglu made to a group of journalists and notes that only Turkey's EU accession process was not dwelt upon. According to the writer, Turkey's EU membership is no longer on the country's agenda. Akgun notes that the Sarkozy-Merkel duo, racism, cultural separatism, and the economic crisis in EU member countries have played a role in removing this issue from Turkey's agenda, arguing that, "however, the Greek Cypriot administration is the main culprit. The Greek Cypriots should congratulate themselves for successfully blocking Turkey's EU membership process and cutting the branch they have been sitting on", writes Akgun, explaining that if results are not achieved in the intercommunal negotiations in Cyprus then it seems as if the Greek Cypriots will have to say good bye to a federal solution. Now that the EU membership issue is no longer on Turkey's agenda, no one can tell us that we cannot become an EU member if we fail to solve the Cyprus issue, points out Akgun, concluding that such a threat no longer has any meaning for Turkey. TURKISH AFFAIRS SECTION http://www.moi.gov.cy/pio

    /EG


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