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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Cypriot and Turkish Media Review, 11-02-04

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. 24/11 04.02.11 C O N T E N T S

[A] TURKISH CYPRIOT PRESS

  • [01] Tacoy alleges that 2011 is the "last window of opportunity" for a solution in Cyprus
  • [02] Baraka Cultural Association protest outside UBP headquarters
  • [03] Serdar Denktas comments on the rally and the "new alternatives" to establishing a "coalition government"
  • [04] Soyer comments "Communal Existence Rally" and subsequent demonstrations
  • [05] Trade Unions Platform extends strikes
  • [06] TUSIAD is reportedly preparing the Turkish Cypriot economy for a possible solution to the Cyprus problem
  • [07] New promotional material for "TRNC" tourism
  • [B] TURKISH PRESS

  • [08] Erdogan harshly criticises the demonstration in occupied Cyprus
  • [09] "Bagis says remedy for racism in EU is Turkey's accession"
  • [10] Workers protest sack laws in Ankara
  • [11] "Kurds criticize Turkish government's silence on mass graves"
  • [12] "US ban on Turkish firms 'opens way for EU competitors in Iran'"
  • [13] Highlights

  • [A] TURKISH CYPRIOT PRESS

    The main stories in today's Turkish Cypriot press are statements by Hasan Tacoy, "MP" with UBP, the march organized yesterday by Baraka Cultural Association, statements by Serdar Denktas that the "UBP government" should resign, statements by Ferdi Sabit Soyer on the "communal existence rally" and reports that the so-called ministry of tourism is to launch a promotion campaign. Moreover, the papers report on the announcement by the Trade Union Platform that strikes will extend to occupied Keryneia and Famagusta.

    [01] Tacoy alleges that 2011 is the "last window of opportunity" for a solution in Cyprus

    Turkish Cypriot daily Star Kibris (04.02.11) reports that Hasan Tacoy, self-styled MP with the National Unity Party (UBP) had contacts in Brussels representing the "assembly" of the breakaway regime. Tacoy met with representatives of EU institutions and mainly with the political groups represented in the European Parliament (EP). The paper writes that Tacoy discussed the report of the EP on Turkey.

    In statements to ABhaber webpage, Tacoy said the message he conveyed during his contacts is that through the report [EU progress report on Turkey] efforts are exerted to prevent the solution in Cyprus, despite the "good will" exhibited by Turkey and the Turkish Cypriot side. He reiterated the Turkish allegation that the Greek Cypriot side uses the advantages deriving from the accession of Cyprus to the EU and tries to prevent Turkey's accession talks by forcing Ankara to abandon its EU bid.

    He added: "2011 is the last window of opportunity for the solution of the Cyprus problem. I said this very clearly to the EU officials. As of 2012 the term presidency of the EU will pass to the Greek Cypriots. The term presidency of the troika (where three EU member states including the Greek Cypriots will participate) will be 18 months. During their EU term presidency, the Greek Cypriots' wish to solve the Cyprus problem will cease to exist".

    Tacoy claimed that the Cyprus problem is used by some EU countries which want to prevent Turkey from joining the Union. He reiterated the Turkish allegation that the EU did not fulfil the promises given to the Turkish Cypriots in 2004 and wondered whether this is in harmony with the European values.

    (I/Ts.)

    [02] Baraka Cultural Association protest outside UBP headquarters

    Turkish Cypriot daily Afrika (04.02.11), under the front page title "Their mothers marched as well", reports on the protest and march organized yesterday outside UBP Headquarters by Baraka Cultural Centre, in order to protest against fanatism and fascism and as a counter protest to the activity organized in the previous days by "Young Fighters Association" .

    As the paper writes, the protesters carried placards with the following slogan: "Ankara take your hands off Cyprus", "Independent Cyprus", "Side by side against fascism", "All nations are brothers".

    The paper reports that members of the UBP Youth Branch gathered outside UBP Headquarters carrying Turkish and "TRNC" flags. The protesters also carried placards with slogans such as "the TRNC is our future", "Cyprus is Turkish and will remain Turkish". The paper adds that the so-called police took the necessary measures during the protest to prevent incidents.

    Support to the protest of Baraka Cultural Centre was expressed by KTOS (Turkish Cypriot Primary School Teachers' Trade Union), YKP (New Cyprus Party), KSP (Cyprus Socialist Party), BKP (United Cyprus Party), "Cypriots Youth Platform", CTP Youth Branch and Barikat newspaper.

    A declaration of the Baraka Cultural Association, read out during the protest, condemned strongly the activity organized by "Young Fighters Association" the previous days and underlined, inter alia, that the association is determined, despite all the pressure, insults and violence, to continue and escalate its struggle for peace, democracy and independence.

    Another declaration was also distributed during the protest by the Youth Branch of UBP. The declaration underlined that the UBP Youth Branch did not understand why the Baraka Cultural Association targets them, and denied any connection with the "Young Fighters Association".

    (AK)

    [03] Serdar Denktas comments on the rally and the "new alternatives" to establishing a "coalition government"

    Turkish Cypriot daily Star Kibris (04.02.11) reports that Serdar Denktas, leader of the Democratic Party (DP), said that the "lack of sensitivity" shown by the self-styled government forced people to participate in the rally on 28 January. In statements to a TV station, Denktas noted that his party has been warning the "government" from the very first day that it is not possible for this package of economic measures to achieve its target in this "country". He said the UBP acted thinking that it could do whatever it wanted because it had 27 "MPs".

    Denktas claimed that some "agents-provocateurs" took advantage of the crowd and opened a banner which was not showing the sensitivity of the crowd and caused a quarrel in the rally. He argued that the "government officials" used this incident and tried to distort the aim of the rally, to underestimate the people who swamped the square, and to seek ways to save themselves by accusing the whole population as "opponent of Turkey".

    Denktas argued that the UBP "government" lost the trust of the "people" and should resign. He added that "new alternatives for governmental models" exist today in the "assembly". He said the UBP could establish a strong "government' with the Republican Turkish Party (CTP) without holding "elections" or a "government of national consensus" could be formed with the participation of all the parties. He noted that if none of these happens, "elections" should be held.

    (I/Ts.)

    [04] Soyer comments "Communal Existence Rally" and subsequent demonstrations

    According to Turkish Cypriot daily Havadis (04.02.11), speaking on a TV programme yesterday, the general chairman of the Republican Turkish Party (CTP-BG), Ferdi Sabit Soyer, said that "an important truth that all of us must consider" became apparent with the rally. This was that Turkish Cypriots do not support the economic model, the way it is implemented, the opportunist mentality that lies behind it and all the manipulations which deprive those who live here of their humanity and identity. Soyer also said that this meeting did not give a message just to the "government, but to south Cyprus, Ankara, Athens, Brussels and New York".

    Commenting on the placard that the "Young Fighters Association" used against Baraka Cultural Centre, which was insulting the mothers of the Baraka members, Soyer condemned the slogan and said that such slogans are unacceptable. Moreover he criticized the members of the "Young Fighters Association" saying that they have no right to be called young fighters and that they cannot turn against persons but an idea.

    [05] Trade Unions Platform extends strikes

    Turkish Cypriot daily Yeni Duzen (04.02.11) reports that the Trade Unions' Platform announced yesterday that the "courts" in Keryneia and Famagusta will be on strike from Monday. The Platform which continues the strikes against the economic measures implemented by the "government" in the occupied Lefkosia courts, the Land Registry and the Population Registry "departments", commented also on last week's "Communal Existence Rally."

    In a press conference yesterday, the Platform described 2011 as the "year of action for communal existence" and announced that reaction will continue with strikes and demonstrations against the UBP "government," which surrenders their social will to AKP. The Platform also said that the demonstrations have sent a clear message to UBP "government" and to AKP government in Ankara. Moreover, the Platform reiterated its statement that since Eroglu lies to society, signs economic measures and false documents, and has surrendered their political will, neither he nor UBP represent the Turkish Cypriots.

    [06] TUSIAD is reportedly preparing the Turkish Cypriot economy for a possible solution to the Cyprus problem

    Turkish Cypriot daily Star Kibris (04.02.11) reports that Mustafa Fethi Gurbuz, chairman of the "Cyprus Working Group" of the Turkish Industrialists' and Businessmen's Association (TUSIAD) and co-chairman of the Business Council between Turkey and the breakaway regime, explained the aim of the activities of the above-mentioned group which started its function recently. In statements to Ada television, Gurbuz said their primary aim is to prepare the Turkish Cypriot economy for a possible solution to the Cyprus problem. He noted that the participation of the business people in the solution process in Cyprus is among their aims.

    Gurbuz said a competitive environment needs to be created for the development of the economy and underlined that this necessitates increase in the investments of the private sector. He said they are working to improve the environment for investments and attract investors to the occupied part of the island. He noted that the Working Group is involved both in determining economic policies and developing strategies for the political process in Cyprus. Gurbuz added that all the work is based on scenarios for a possible solution and that they determine economic policies according to these scenarios.

    Gurbuz said the decisions and the economic measures to be taken might be painful and described as "normal" any reaction against these reforms. He recalled that a similar situation was experienced in Turkey and added that a price will be paid for the reforms in the occupied part of Cyprus just like in Turkey.

    (I/Ts.)

    [07] New promotional material for "TRNC" tourism

    According to Turkish Cypriot daily Havadis (04.02.11), tourism promotional material was presented yesterday at a press conference, organized by the "ministry of Tourism, Environment and Culture".

    Speaking at the conference Dervis Gezer, director of the "promotion and marketing department" said that the new material has been prepared in order to promote tourism in the "TRNC" more effectively, in view of the declaration of 2011 "North Cyprus year" in Turkey. The videos, prepared in collaboration with Bayrak Radio Television Foundation, and the brochures published will be the main means for the promotion of the "TRNC" along with their participation in international tourism fairs, Gezer said.

    The so-called minister Kemal Durust, said that initially the videos will be broadcast in Turkey and that along with Turkish Radio Television the support of 15 television channels has been obtained. Moreover, he said the "ministerial council" will decide today regarding broadcasting the videos in England and other European countries.


    [B] TURKISH PRESS

    Great coverage in today's Turkish newspapers is given to two powerful explosions, just hours apart, at an industrial zone in Ankara, killing at least 14 people. In addition, statements by Prime Minister Erdogan criticising the demonstrations in occupied Cyprus, the ongoing developments in Egypt and statements by Foreign Minister Davutoglu on the issue during his flight to Qatar, data by Turkey's statistics authority (TurkStat), showing a 4.9% annual inflation rate, the lowest Turkey has seen since 1969, and other internal issues are also covered by the press.

    [08] Erdogan harshly criticises the demonstration in occupied Cyprus

    Turkish daily Sabah (04.02.11), under the title, "Erdogan to pull TRNC's ear", publishes a commentary by Emre Akoz who writes that the Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan harshly criticized the anti-Turkey slogans chanted at the demonstrations held in the occupied areas of Cyprus to protest the "government's" recent economic measures.

    Speaking to reporters during a visit to Kirgizstan, Erdogan was asked to comment on the issue of the demonstrations in occupied Cyprus and "the expression of his face changed immediately", as the reporter says. The columnist expresses the view that Erdogan felt betrayed as "Turkish Prime Minister". "I would not be surprised if he called them 'ungrateful'," Akoz writes.

    Akoz writes that Erdogan described the demonstrations in occupied Cyprus as provocative actions and stated: "They are doing this job together with south (Cyprus). The last one [activity] took place on January 28. They are saying to us, 'Get out'. There is indifference on the part of the administration. The administration, from the president to the prime minister, should articulate their stance openly and clearly. They have no right to hold such activities against Turkey. Their lowest-paid employee receives around 10 thousand liras. My councillor at the prime ministry receives a little over five thousand liras. This gentleman earns ten thousand liras and holds this activity, without shame. In addition, he takes a 13th salary each year. And then he says 'Turkey get out, leave'. Who are you to say 'take your hands off '? I have martyrs, I have war veterans... I am interested strategically... Whatever Greece's job is in Cyprus, Turkey has the same job, strategically.

    It is significant that those who are nourished by our country begin to act in this way. We support [them]... Should there not be something in exchange for this? Preparing the ground for activities against Turkey is unacceptable. Now I see that (prime minister Irsen Kucuk) wants an appointment with me, I will invite him and have a discussion with him. We will ask..."

    [09] "Bagis says remedy for racism in EU is Turkey's accession"

    In an interview to the Turkish daily Today's Zaman (04.02.11) published with the above title the Turkish State Minister and Chief Negotiator for EU talks Egemen Bagis warned that Europe faces a growing threat from spreading racism, arguing that Turkey's accession to the EU is the only remedy. He also said: "Today, the EU is facing the danger of being besieged by racist minds who look up to the fascist regimes of the 1930s as a model to emulate and who fail to accept EU values."

    Noting that Anatolia is a cradle of civilizations and faiths and that the region is rich in culture with motifs from different civilizations and faiths, Bagis said temples of Islam, Christianity and Judaism are located on the same avenue in Istanbul and have coexisted without violating each other's rights for centuries. "For this reason, Turkey's EU membership is an opportunity and will be one of the historical turning points for world history, Bagis stated.

    Bagis also slammed Republican People s Party (CHP) leader Kemal K1l1cdaroglu for underestimating Turkey s efforts in its EU membership bid, as a response to the CHP leader's earlier criticism claiming the Turkish government has made no effort in the EU process. Bagis dismissed a claim by senior CHP officials that the majority of Turkish people are against EU accession, and added that the latest surveys show 65%" support to EU membership. He said a report will be submitted on the government's effort in EU membership talks over the past two years.

    [10] Workers protest sack laws in Ankara

    Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (online, 03.02.11), under the title "Walking like an Egyptian, responding like Turkey", reports that nearly 10,000 workers, including 30 opposition deputies, protesting in Ankara on Thursday were pushed back with water cannons and pepper spray, a move the opposition said ran counter to the government's call for a peaceful response to demonstrators in Egypt.

    Workers throughout the country descended on the capital to protest a bill they say reduces their rights, as part of a mass demonstration organized by various Turkish unions. Their goal was to create a human chain around the Parliament building to show their opposition to new employment legislation currently being debated at the General Assembly.

    Interior Minister Besir Atalay and Ankara Gov. Alaatin Yuksel had warned protesters not to initiate the rally, as they did not have legal permission to gather. If they insisted on doing so, the officials said, security forces would intervene.

    Police blocked Ataturk Boulevard, the main road leading to Parliament, and warned protesters not to try to proceed further. At this point, deputies with the main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP), led by Istanbul deputy Cetin Soysal, began negotiating with the police chiefs and then with Atalay, who agreed the group could march only another 500 meters further. When the protesters insisted on proceeding, police responded using water cannons and pepper spray. Workers responded to the security forces by hurling sticks, stones and eggs.

    Members of the CHP criticized the use of police force against the demonstrators, saying it contradicted with the Turkish government's call to Egyptian President Hosni Mubarak to heed the demand of protesters in his country and step down without violence. To make his advice admissible, he should practice it himself within Turkey, CHP leader Kemal K1l1cdaroglu wrote Wednesday in a message on the social-networking website Twitter.

    If the controversial legislation, known as the  sack law, is adopted, it would allow employers to relocate workers against their will, make workers and not employers financially responsible for health-benefit premiums, and allow employers to hire interns and apprentices for four months without pay. Trade unions say the changes would also give the government leeway to use a special fund designed to fight unemployment for other purposes. Thursday s protest was organized by the Confederation of Progressive Workers Unions (D0SK), the Confederation of Public Sector Trade Unions (KESK), the Turkish Union of Engineers and Architects Chambers (TMMOB), and the Turkish Medical Association (TTB).

    [11] "Kurds criticize Turkish government's silence on mass graves"

    Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (online, 03.02.11), with the above title, reports that thousands of people marched Wednesday in eastern Turkey to protest what they described as the government's silence on mass graves uncovered in the area last month. The march was organized by the pro-Kurdish Peace and Democracy Party (BDP), the Mesopotamia Association for Assistance to Families with Lost Relatives (MEYA-DER) and various nongovernmental organizations.

    The crowd, numbering in the thousands, marched to Mutki, where 12 skeletons were uncovered on January 5, and eight more on January 20, all near a dump site used by the local gendarmerie station.

    The discovery of the mass graves would be on the top of the agenda had it occurred in any other country in the world, said BDP co-leader Gulten K1sanak. She added that no one should expect Kurds to trust the state unless light is shed on the mass graves and unsolved murders in Turkey.

    The deputy leader of the main opposition Republican People s Party (CHP) Sezgin Tanr1kulu, in a press release on Wednesday, claimed that the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) has blocked efforts to uncover the truth about unsolved murders.

    [12] "US ban on Turkish firms 'opens way for EU competitors in Iran'"

    Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (online, 03.02.11), with the above title reports that Turkish businessmen have reacted against the US Treasury's decision on Tuesday to put three Turkish companies ? Macpar, Multimat and Step ? on a blacklist, claiming that the companies were cooperating in a multi-million-dollar procurement network for Iran's missile industries. European firms are replacing Turkish firms banned from trading in Iran, they said.

    The "blacklist" practice of the U.S. is troubling not only for the defence industry but many sectors, according to Abdullah Cinar, a board member at the Istanbul Chamber of Commerce (ICOC).

    [13] Highlights

    Following are summaries of reports and commentaries of selected items from the Turkish press of 03 February 2011:

    Developments in the Middle East, North Africa

    In an article in Hurriyet, entitled "Where is proactive Davutoglu?", Cuneyt Ulsever criticizes Foreign Minister Davutoglu for his silence over the developments in the Middle East and North Africa. Cuneyt Ulsever writes: "It is definite that the foreign minister is hyperactive, but one needs a thousand witnesses to prove that he is proactive." The minister has taken a post-active stand, argues Ulsever and maintains that. Turkey was unable to expresses a view on the developments because it lacked the analysis or the intelligence regarding these countries.

    In an article entitled in Taraf entitled, "A ceasefire will benefit the AKP during the elections", Yildiray Ogur draws the profile of Muslim Brotherhood and claims that this organization, which has at times been violent, is renewing itself and is adapting to democracy and to cooperation with different groups. Noting that Muslims Brotherhood is Egypt's most powerful organization after its army, Ogur draws attention to the fact that it has refrained from coming to the foreground since the beginning of the uprising. Many organizations in the Middle East have understood that a new era has been initiated in the region and that acts of civil disobedience and not weapons are methods that muster respect, argues Ogur, adding that the PKK is one of the very few organizations that has not been able to understand this reality. Referring to the note sent by Qandil to Imrali last month to the effect that entering the 2011 election period in a ceasefire atmosphere can only benefit the Justice and Development Party, (AKP), the writer says that Ocalan does not value this "erroneous analysis."

    Presidential System

    Writing in Milliyet, Mehmet Tezkan questions whether the developments in Egypt have adversely affected Prime Minister Erdogan's plans for a presidential system. Tezkan argues that the examples of Tunisia and Egypt and the presidency of Chavez in Venezuela show that what Erdogan is proposing is not in the interests of the country. Referring to the assessments that the democratic regime in Turkey has set an example to the Egyptian people, Tezkan argues that if that is the case and Turkey happens to have an exemplary system, then there is no reason to change it. While Egypt, Tunisia, Jordan, and Syria are making a transition to a parliamentary democracy, our transition to a presidential system which they are trying to abandon, would be a tragicomedy, concludes Tezkan.

    AKP Rhetoric on Alcohol Regulation

    Writing in Hurriyet Daily News, Barcin Yinanc views the speed with which the new regulation on alcohol has been put to implementation. Noting that fear of the consequences has led to this speedy implementation, Barcin adds: "The implementation of laws for gender equality is slow because the head of the government said openly he did not believe in gender equality. Unfortunately effective implementation of certain laws in Turkey depends on the attitude of the head of the government." Referring to the prime minister's statement that the AKP does not intend to impose a way of life, Barcin concludes that "it is empty rhetoric and the implementation proves otherwise."

    Demonstrations Against Omnibus Bill

    In an article in Hurriyet entitled "Those in Egypt are the people, at home they are 'Illegal organizations'", Yalcin Dogan views the decision of the Ankara Governor's Office not to grant permission to the various labour confederations to stage a demonstration against the omnibus bill being discussed in parliament. Erdogan, who is sensitive to the demands of the people in Egypt, will find it very difficult to describe as "illegal organizations" to the various labour confederations that are planning to stage a demonstration against the omnibus bill. TURKISH AFFAIRS SECTION ttp://www.moi.gov.cy/pio

    /EG


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