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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Cypriot and Turkish Media Review, 11-12-19
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From: The Republic of Cyprus Press and Information Office Server at <http://www.pio.gov.cy/>TURKISH CYPRIOT AND TURKISH MEDIA REVIEW No. 240/11 17-19.12.11 C O N T E N T S
[A] TURKISH CYPRIOT / TURKISH PRESSOver the weekend the Turkish Cypriot press focused on the meetings that Eroglu had with foreign ambassadors in Lefkosia, members of the "TRNC Friendship Group" of the British Parliament and a delegation from the "Cyprus Turkish Human Rights Association." Also covered were statements by Ozgurgun and Hasipoglu regarding the UN decision to extend the mandate of UNFICYP. The majority of today's press reports on the municipal elections in the Republic of Cyprus and comments on the results. Statements by PACE's head Mevlut Cavusoglu, Kemal Durust's statement regarding the theological department in occupied Mia Milia and other domestic issues are also covered by the papers today.
President Christofias' statement that the two sides will share the wealth of the natural gas even if no solution is found to the Cyprus problem, Erdogan's letter to Sarkozy to warn France over the issue of the Armenian bill, reports that a parliamentary delegation went to France to carry out contacts on the Armenian bill, statements by the leader of the opposition party (CHP), Kemal Kilicdaroglu that they should return to the previous presidential system, Bagis' proposal for the Turkish President's term to be 7 years and other internal issues are some of the main stories covered by today's Turkish dailies. About Cyprus, Turkish dailies report on statement by Alexander Downer on the negotiation process, on JCC's figures about the money the Greek Cypriots spent in the occupied area of Cyprus and on the debate of the "Military Services bill" during a meeting chaired by the Turkish Cypriot leader, Dervis Eroglu.
 Eroglu had a telephone conversation with F?leIllegal Baryak television (online, 19.12.11) reports that the Turkish Cypriot leader Dervis Eroglu briefed the EU on the latest situation in the Cyprus talks and the Turkish Cypriot sides' stance prior to the Green tree meeting.
According to illegal BRT, Eroglu had a phone conversation with EU Commissioner for Enlargement Stefan F?le, with whom they exchanged views on the Cyprus talks, and especially on issues regarding the EU.
It is also reported that Eroglu and Fule discussed some matters concerning the general course of the process.
During the phone conversation, they also evaluated the issues discussed at the meeting of the EU Cyprus Steering Group, which was held under the chair of European Commission President Jos? Manuel Barroso a few days ago.
 Eroglu held various meetings with foreign diplomatsAccording to illegal Bayrak television (online, 16.12.11), Turkish Cypriot leader Dervis Eroglu met on Friday with members of the "TRNC Friendship Group" of the British Parliament, headed by Baroness Jill Knight of Collingtree. Lord Harrisson, Lord Maginnis of Drumglass, Lady Butterworth and Baroness Meral Hussein Ece accompanied the Baroness Knight of Collingtree.
The British delegation also met with self-styled speaker of the "assembly" Hasan Bozer, as well as "officials" of the breakaway regime.
Later, Eroglu met with the Belgian Ambassador to Cyprus Guy Servin, Dutch Ambassador Brechje Schwachofer and Danish Ambassadors Kirsten Geelan.
Eroglu had also a separate meeting on Friday afternoon with Andrew James Schofer Charg? d'Affaires at US Embassy, Nicosia.
No statements were issued before or after the meetings.
 Eroglu reiterates his views on the so-called embargoesAccording to illegal Bayrak television (online, 17.12.11), speaking during a meeting with a delegation from the "Cyprus Turkish Human Rights Association" on the occasion of International Human Rights week, Turkish Cypriot leader Dervis Eroglu has once again called on the international community to rethink the "unjust embargoes imposed on the Turkish Cypriots".
Eroglu argued that it was the European Union, a block made up of modern and civilized states, which was imposing the "unjust embargoes on the Turkish Cypriots".
Eroglu claimed: "I would like to use this occasion to once again express our sensitivity and on this issue. We established a partnership state but we were forced out of that structure. Today, as we live in safety under the roof of the TRNC, the state we founded, there are attempts being made to render our state non-existent".
Eroglu claimed that although the Greek Cypriots were responsible for the collapse of the "1960 Partnership Republic" and rejected all offers for a Cyprus settlement, the Greek Cypriots are both members of the European Union and the United Nations.
Eroglu alleged that "Turkish Cypriots continued to be crushed by and punished under inhuman embargoes despite embracing and accepting all proposals put on the negotiating table over the years regarding a solution".
He argued: "We are nevertheless working hard to reach a new partnership, a settlement that will make sure that the Turkish Cypriots do not experience a repetition of the bitter experiences of the past".
 PACE's presidents stated that they have not forgotten the occupation regimeTurkish Cypriot daily Gunes (19.12.11) reports on statements by Mevlut Cavusoglu, president of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE), who addressing the "December 2011 Academic Council Meeting" of the Marmara Group Foundation in Turkey, said that during his duty term they have never neglected the citizens of the countries, they were visiting.
Referring to Azerbaijan, he said that they have prevented the implementation of double-standards against this country. As regards the occupation regime, he said that they have not forgotten the "TRNC", adding that the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) is the only foundation in Europe which embodies two Turkish Cypriot "MPs".
Cavusoglu said that during his duty term they treated the "north" with the same way they treated the "south", as he referred to the occupied area of the island and the government of the Republic of Cyprus.
 Turkish Cypriot daily argues that it is not correct to accuse Eroglu of not continuing the negotiations from the point Talat left themUnder the title "Has Talat continued from the point where Denktas left [them]?" Turkish Cypriot daily Star Kibris (19.12.11) refers to the accusations of the "opposition" parties against the Turkish Cypriot leader Dervis Eroglu that he did not continue the negotiations from the point where former Turkish Cypriot leader Talat had left them. In its column under the title "From the Editor", the paper reports that both the Turkish Cypriot opposition and the Greek Cypriots base their reactions against Eroglu on the issue of the cross voting.
The paper writes, inter alia, the following: "?It is not a correct criticism to say that Eroglu should continue from where Talat left [the negotiations]. If the Turkish Cypriot people adopted and accepted Talat being a negotiator, they would elect Talat as president. The Turkish Cypriot people did not adopt Talat's steps on the issues of cross voting and the single sovereignty. In the end Eroglu, who opposed to these, referred to two sovereignties and opposed to the cross voting, won the election. It is for this reason that people voted for Eroglu. Those who say that Eroglu should continue from the point Talat left [the negotiations], must reply to the following question: has Talat continued from the point where our founding president Denktas left [the negotiations]? No, he did not?The people did not vote for Eroglu saying accept the single sovereignty. At the squares Eroglu gave messages that he would not accept the single sovereignty and the cross voting. The Turkish Cypriot people said no to Talat, that is, no to Talat's views..."
The paper argues that it is not correct to criticize Eroglu publicly on these issues for which the Greek Cypriot side also criticizes him. It would be better if these views were expressed to Eroglu during the meetings with him and not publicly with the aim of having political gain, concludes Star Kibris.
 How the Turkish Cypriot press covers the results of the Municipal Elections in the government-controlled area of CyprusThe Turkish Cypriot press today (19.12.11) refer to the results of the Municipal Elections held yesterday in the government-controlled area of the Republic of Cyprus.
Under the front-page title "Eleni is gone", Kibris refers to the victory of Constandinos Yiorkadjis in the Municipality of Lefkosia, and reports that "the son of Polikarpos Yiorkadjis, who in 1963 struggled to unite Cyprus with Greece, became Mayor of divided Lefkosia in 2011".
Under the title "DISY is the winner of the election", Yeni Duzen reports that the Democratic Rally Party (DISY) won three out of the four major municipalities in the free area of Cyprus and points out that ruling AKEL party lost the elections in Lefkosia and Larnaka. The paper writes that DISY increased its percentage to 38% from 33.9% in 2006, while AKEL's percentage decreased by 1.1%.
Halkin Sesi refers to the issue under the title "Blow in local elections to AKEL".
Afrika publishes the results of the elections under the title "Mavru lost, Yiorkadjis won", noting that the former mayor of Lefkosia Eleni Mavrou lost the election as she could receive only 39.36% of the votes.
Haberdar refers to the issue under the title "DISY came out [as winner] from the ballot box". In its inside pages, Havadis reports that "The Greek Cypriots went to the ballot box".
 Ozgurgun criticized UN resolution on UNFICYPAccording to illegal Bayrak television (online, 17.12.11), self-styled minister of foreign affairs Huseyin Ozgurgun, in an interview to illegal BRT, criticized latest UN resolution on UNFICYP.
Ozgurgun has called on the UN Security Council to review its resolution extending the UNFICYP's mandate for a further period, ending on the 19th of July 2012.
He argued that there can't be the "end game" in Cyprus as long as members of the Security Council continued to use the island for their own military and political interests.
Ozgurgun claimed: "The UNFICYP is in Cyprus for political reasons. It is the Turkish Armed Forces which ensures peace on the island and protects the security of the Turkish Cypriots".
He accused the "UN Security Council of ignoring the realities in Cyprus while adopting its recent resolution which failed to get the approval of both sides on the island".
Ozgurgun drew attention to the fact that the next resolution to be adopted regarding the UNFICYP mandate coincides with Cyprus' term-presidency within the European Union which starts on the 1st of July. "By doing so, members of the Council implied that they don't expect a settlement to take place in Cyprus by that time anyway", Ozgurgun added.
Ozgurgun criticized "the statements in the resolution which referred to the Republic of Cyprus ruled by the Greek Cypriots as the sole authority on the island".
He laid emphasis on the fact that the extension of the UNFICYP mandate is parallel to political purposes of Russia, Britain, the United States and the EU over Cyprus. Claiming that the existence of foreign military bases in Cyprus will be put into question once a partnership state is established on the island in the event of a settlement, Ozgurgun said members of the Security Council wouldn't be happy with such a development.
 Hasipoglu said UBP is satisfied with latest UNFICYP reportAccording to illegal Bayrak television (online, 17.12.11), the general secretary of the ruling National Unity Party (UBP) Ertugrul Hasipoglu evaluated the latest developments on the Cyprus Problem.
Hasipoglu said that the time had come for the United Nations and the European Union to bring the current negotiations process to a conclusion.
Hasipoglu, in a press release, said that his party was satisfied with the UN Security Council's latest UNFICYP report and the UN Secretary General's follow up statements.
Underlining the need to put an end to the uncertainty caused by the Cyprus problem, Hasipoglu said that it was important to hold productive talks and prevent the Greek Cypriot side's attempts to delay the process.
"It is crucial that a more comprehensive summit is held at Greentree next month and that the endgame in the process is launched as stated by the UN Chief. It is also essential that an international conference is held", he added.
Claiming that a new mistake will be added to the existing tower of mistakes made on the Cyprus problem by allowing the Greek Cypriot side to take on the EU term Presidency, Hasipoglu argued that this will only lead to a further loss of trust and confidence towards the international community.
 Davutoglu on Cyprus' EU term-presidencyUnder the title "Government firm on reform drive", Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (online, 19.12.11) reports the following:
"Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu chaired talks yesterday in Konya on reforms sought by the European Union despite the standstill in accession talks, with EU pressure over jailed journalists high on the agenda.
Justice Minister Sadullah Ergin, Interior Minister Idris Naim Sahin and EU Minister Egemen Bagis participated in the meeting of the Reform Monitoring Group (RMG) in the Central Anatolian province, Davutoglu's hometown.
'The issue of basic rights and freedoms was on the agenda in the context of EU pressure over lengthy detention periods and jailed journalists,' a source said while the meeting was still under way.
Speaking after the meeting, Davutoglu said Ergin had briefed the group on preparations for an 'action plan on freedom of expression' and other work under way on the problem of lengthy pre-trial detentions.
The ministers also analysed ways to effectuate what EU Commissioner Stefan F?le called 'the positive agenda' which builds on the solid fundamentals of Turkey-EU relations. To this end, the ministers reviewed efforts to facilitate visa procedures for Turkish citizens.
'The 'positive agenda' should not replace our EU accession talks. If the EU wants to apply a 'positive agenda,' then it should [allow Turks to travel visa-free]. We are waiting for this step immediately,' Davutoglu said at the press conference.
It was the first time that the RMG had convened since the June 12 elections. The meeting came amid mounting criticism that the government has lost its appetite for reform, as well as growing concern over lengthy pre-trial detentions including those of journalists critical of the government.
The ministers also discussed the parliamentary drive to draw up a new charter for Turkey and how the process could serve to embrace EU norms.
'The reform efforts should be stronger than ever even under the current circumstance,' Davutoglu said in reference to the virtual halt in Turkey's EU accession talks that could be exacerbated by a fresh crisis when Greek Cyprus [editor's note: Republic of Cyprus] takes over the EU presidency in July.
'The aim of Greek Cyprus is to postpone the EU accession talks as it will take the EU term presidency in 2012. We will not be blindfolded to these manoeuvres,' said Davutoglu.
He also called for the speedy implementation of an action plan of reforms that the Cabinet had adopted in September 2010. (?)"
 Illegal continental shelf agreement extends in the whole sea around CyprusUnder the title "KKTC continental shelf agreement extends to Greek Cyprus areas", Turkish daily Today's Zaman (online, 16.12.11) reports the following:
"A continental shelf agreement was signed between Turkey and the TRNC [editor's note: the breakaway regime in the occupied area of the Republic of Cyprus] in September, but the content was not released to the media. However, information came out on Friday that identified some areas claimed by Greek Cyprus [editor's note: Republic of Cyprus] as part of the TRNC's continental shelf in the eastern Mediterranean.
The agreement on the division of the continental shelf between the two countries in the eastern Mediterranean signed on Sept. 21 in New York includes the coordinates of the northwest part of the island which is under the control of Greek Cyprus. In addition, the agreement grants equal rights to the TRNC, allowing the exploration and management of natural resources in the whole sea around the island, and not being limited to the TRNC's continental shelf.
(...)The agreement text, which Turkish officials said would not be disclosed before being approved, got its first approval by the Turkish Parliament's Foreign Affairs Committee on Thursday and was submitted to the General Assembly the same day."
 Durust says that they have no intention to open religious department in any other school in the occupied areaTurkish Cypriot daily Gunes (19.12.11) reports that the so-called minister of education, Kemal Durust stated that the religious department at the vocational high school in occupied Mia Milia village will open as one classroom adding that there is not any thought for such departments to be established in other schools. Durust was answering to the statements made by Tahir Gokcebel, chairman of the Turkish Cypriot Secondary School Teachers' Trade Union (KTOEOS), who has said that the "religious department at the vocational high school will be spread to other schools as well".
Issuing a written statement, Durust said that neither he nor the "government" have taken any decision towards this matter. Referring to the religious books which were allegedly brought to the occupation regime from Turkey, Durust said that the "ministry" was not informed about those books.
Durust reiterated also that they will not close the "Ataturk Educational Academy".
 "Controversy deepens on presidential term"Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (online, 19.12.11) with the above title reports the following:
"The ongoing debate over President Abdullah Gul's term length has deepened with the main opposition reiterating its support for a five-year term but also calling for a return to the head of state's election by Parliament.
Turkey should return to the old system under which Parliament elected the head of state because the Presidency is a largely ceremonial office, meaning candidates would have little to offer voters during campaigning, Republican People's Party (CHP) leader Kemal Kilicdaroglu said yesterday.
'What will a presidential candidate promise to the people? That he can appoint university rectors better than other candidates?' he said.
Kilicdaroglu made the comments after Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan came out a day earlier in support of fixing Gul's term at seven years amid the continuing debate about how long the term should be.
'Our position is the president's term should be seven years. There is a developing view that the issue should be handled in Parliament. It will come to the agenda of the Constitution [Conciliation] Commission in the new year,' Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan said in Istanbul on Dec. 17.
The ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) is planning to end the controversy by adding a provision to a draft law on the procedural rules for the presidential elections that will be discussed at the commission in January, party sources said.
The provision would indicate presidential candidates would start submitting their applications on a date in 2014, effectively fixing Gul's term at seven years, the tenure laid out by the Constitution at the time he was elected.
But the CHP slammed the plan, arguing that a law could not stipulate provisions countering the Constitution, which currently allows for a five-year, once-renewable term for the president under amendments approved by referendum in 2007 shortly after Parliament elected Gul as president.
The AKP is manipulating the law to pave the way for Erdogan to ascend to the presidency after completing his term as prime minister, he added.
'The law cannot be tailor-made for a certain person. If you do that, you betray democratic traditions and the supremacy of law', Kilicdaroglu said.
'The issue requires a constitutional amendment. You cannot do this with a law if this is still a state based on the rule of law,' the CHP's deputy group chairwoman, Emine Ulker Tarhan, told the Hurriyet Daily News yesterday.
Asked whether the CHP might go to the Constitutional Court to seek the abolition of any such legislation, she said: 'We will consider the issue if the AKP goes ahead. We will consider every option if they attempt to do this through a law.'
Turkey's next head of state is set to be elected by a popular vote for the first time under the 2007 amendments. Until now, the ongoing controversy has centred on whether the amendments should be considered retroactive to affect Gul's mandate.
The opposition argues Gul should serve five years on grounds that constitutional amendments reducing parliamentary terms from five to four years, which were approved as part of the same package in 2007, were considered retroactive for the previous legislature.
The Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) also insisted that Gul was entitled to a five-year, once-renewable term. 'The prime minister may choose any course of action relying on his parliamentary majority but we preserve our view that the '5+5' formula is the legally valid one,' MHP leader Devlet Bahceli said, expressing his support for a system in which a president would be able to stand for two five-year terms.
Deputy Prime Minister Besir Atalay, meanwhile, voiced confidence that the AKP would sort out the controversy, saying the party had not yet begun discussions as to who would be its candidate for the next head of state.
'I am not sure whether [Gul's] term could be fixed with a law. There is some hesitation there. Our basic position is Parliament should have the final say; therefore, we may already consider this problem resolved,' he told the private Kanal 7 channel."
 Turkey signed visa exemption agreement with Ethiopia and NigeriaAccording to Ankara Anatolia news agency (17.12.11), Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu and Ethiopian Deputy Premier and Foreign Minister Hailemariam Desalegn signed the visa exemption agreement on the side-lines of the Turkey-Africa Partnership Ministerial Review Conference in Istanbul.
Turkey and Ethiopia signed a visa exemption agreement for holders of diplomatic passports in Istanbul on Friday.
Moreover, A.A. (16.12.11) reports that Nigerian Foreign Minister Olugbenga Ashiru, who is currently in Istanbul to attend Turkey-Africa Partnership Ministerial Review Conference, and Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu signed the visa exemption agreement in Istanbul on Friday.
Under the agreement, visa exemption will be valid for people who own diplomatic passport.
 Ghana awaiting Turkish investorsAccording to Ankara Anatolia news agency (18.12.11), Ghana's Foreign Minister invited Turkish investors to his country, saying Ghana had speeded up efforts to become an attraction centre for foreign capital.
"We want more foreign direct investments in our country and we are paying special efforts to draw Turkish businesspeople to Ghana," Alhaji Muhammad Mumuni told the Anadolu Agency in Istanbul where he participated in the First Ministerial Review Conference of the Africa - Turkey Partnership.
Mumuni said trade volume between the two countries had been 400 million USD in the first eight months of 2011, adding the figure was expected to reach one billion USD in the next couple of years.
Mumuni said Turkey had opened its embassy in capital Accra last March when Turkish President Abdullah Gul visited Ghana, adding that the Ghana was set to open its embassy in Ankara soon.
The foreign minister said Ghana had a great potential in oil and natural gas with newly-explored fields, adding that his country offered vast opportunities for investment in energy, construction, and railways. TURKISH AFFAIRS SECTION http://www.moi.gov.cy/pio