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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Cypriot and Turkish Media Review, 13-01-08

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. 5/13 08.01.13

[A] TURKISH CYPRIOT / TURKISH PRESS

  • [01] Davutoglu: "Turkey will take counter action if Greeks search for petrol"
  • [02] Eroglu's special representative Ertug: There is a need for consensus over Cyprus negotiation procedure
  • [03] Halloumi case on the EU track
  • [04] Tip-Is trade union has launched a protest; It announced that it has stopped provide health services to the "patients" who are visiting "hospitals" in order to take the occupation regime's citizenship
  • [05] Turkish Ministry is accused of distorting EU's Progress Report for Turkey
  • [06] Erdogan: "Turkey only saw brotherhood in Africa on the contrary to other countries which saw diamonds"
  • [07] Turkey to seek larger share in Libyan, Qatari energy production ?Yildiz said that Cyprus economic crisis will affect the oil exploration
  • [08] Turkey's Foreign Ministry: "Turkish military officials following each phase of deployment of Patriots"; The Netherlands began shipment of air-defense batteries to Turkey
  • [09] Turkish Commander Dogan's role as junta leader was confirmed in Sledgehammer opinion
  • [10] Turkey, US to hold intensified Iraq talks ?Erdogan may visit Washington in the coming months
  • [11] The occupied Lefkosia "court" rejected Kucuk's appeal; Kucuk's lawyer to appeal to the "supreme court" today
  • [12] Agreement is reached in occupied Lefkosia's "municipality"; The employees returned to work
  • [13] Turkish businessman calls on THY to "rear up" the occupied area of Cyprus
  • [14] Turkish columnist says that many Turkish Cypriots feel they have been colonized by Turkey and are openly saying so

  • [A] TURKISH CYPRIOT / TURKISH PRESS

    [01] Davutoglu: "Turkey will take counter action if Greeks search for petrol"

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (07.01.13) reports that the Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu commenting on news regarding Greece's petroleum exploration works in the Aegean Sea, stated: "In such a situation Turkey takes counter action".

    Davutoglu, during his visit of Governor of Izmir Cahit Kirac, within scope of the Fifth Ambassadors Conference, stated that they were following the issue. The two countries he said, had positive relations and in such time it is better to abstaining unilateral steps.

    Davutoglu also said that they have made progress in determining the date for the high-level strategic cooperation council with Greece and added, "Therefore, while Turkey-Greece relations have gained acceleration, it carries great importance to move together in this process."

    [02] Eroglu's special representative Ertug: There is a need for consensus over Cyprus negotiation procedure

    Illegal Bayrak television (07.01.13) broadcast that Osman Ertug Special Representative of the Turkish Cypriot leader Dervis Eroglu, spoke to Bayrak about the latest developments of the Cyprus problem in 2012 and stated that there is a need for a consensus over the procedure that will be followed before the re-launch of the Cyprus negotiations process.

    Referring to the presidential elections in the Republic of Cyprus, Ertug alleged that they will be an obstacle in the way of the Cyprus negotiations process, but he said that he hoped 2013 would be the year a solution is found to the Cyprus problem.

    He said that a new term in the Cyprus talks will begin once the presidential elections are over and added that the United Nations has already been preparing for this new term.

    He went on and alleged that the Turkish Cypriot side was continuing to harvest its good will and were determined to find a solution to the Cyprus problem as soon as possible, and added that as the UN has also stated these talks cannot continue open ended therefore a new procedure as to how the talks will proceed must be agreed upon.

    [03] Halloumi case on the EU track

    Under the title "Hellim (halloumi cheese) case on the EU track", Turkish Cypriot daily Havadis (08.01.13) reports that the dispute between "south Cyprus" as the Republic of Cyprus is called, and "north Cyprus" about the geographical registration of halloumi product continues.

    As the paper writes, the Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Industry (KTSO), and the union of producers of dairy products (SUIB), objected to the application submitted to the EU by the Ministry of Agriculture of the Republic of Cyprus in order to make the geographical registration of halloumi cheese.

    The Turkish Cypriot organizations submitted to the Republic of Cyprus' Ministry of Agriculture their objections as regards the contents and the control and they wait an answer by the end of the month on the issue, writes the paper.

    According to the paper, the application made to the EU by the Ministry of Agriculture of "south Cyprus" as the Republic of Cyprus is called, for the registration of the geographical origin of halloumi, foresees that the authority for the control and the inspections both in the free areas of the Republic of Cyprus and in the occupied area of Cyprus, should be in their hands. It however, pointed out to the fact that it is a problem how it will carry out these inspections, since the Republic of Cyprus does not recognizes the "TRNC".

    Meanwhile, as the paper writes, the KTSO and SUIB announced that they decided to transfer the EU of halloumi to the EU, in case that their objection will not be accepted by the Ministry of the Republic of Cyprus.

    Commenting on the issue, Ali Cirali, chairman of the Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Industry, has stated that they had submitted their objections to the Ministry of Agriculture as regards the halloumi issue, and added that they expect their response. Cirali added the following: "As Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Industry, we submitted our objections to the issue of halloumi concerning the control of the dairy products to be conducted by the Greek Cypriot side both in the south and in the north. The controls-inspections in the north should be conducted by the Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Industry. We have filed a lawsuit to the courts in the south on this issue. We do not have a response yet. If we take a negative response, we will transfer the issue to the EU", Cirali, underlined:

    (...).

    [04] Tip-Is trade union has launched a protest; It announced that it has stopped provide health services to the "patients" who are visiting "hospitals" in order to take the occupation regime's citizenship

    Turkish daily Afrika newspaper (08.01.13) reports that the Turkish Cypriot Physicians' Trade Union (TIP-IS) announced that it has decided as of yesterday to not provide health services to those who are visiting the occupation regime's hospitals in order to have "physical examinations" so that to be able to take the "TRNC's citizenship", and also announced that they would not provide health services to more than 25 patients per day.

    Speaking to a correspondent of illegal TAK, the chairman of TIP-IS trade Union, Erol Seherlioglu said that they have launched an action as of yesterday morning. He said that they decided not to provide services to those who want to be examined with the purpose to take the "TRNC's citizenship".

    Seherlioglu stated that during the recent year, two out of the three "patients" who were visiting the "state hospitals", were aimed to gain the "citizenship". Seherlioglu stressed the need for the so-called ministry of health to take the necessary measures in order to find a solution to this issue.

    Meanwhile, Turkish Cypriot daily Yeni Duzen (08.01.13) reports in its front page on the same issue under the title: "1500 citizens in one year".

    The paper reports on statements by Seherlioglu and writes that he has said that an average of 1500 "citizens" who went to the "hospital" in order to have "health examinations" between January 2012-October 2012, were aimed to take the necessary "health report" in order to be able to take the occupation regime's citizenship.

    He added that the occupation regime's citizenship is "granted" even to those who do not have an "appropriate health report".

    He stated also that during the last two years a total of 4250 disable people were examined by the "doctors". According to Seherlioglu, only 250 out of this number were Turkish Cypriot citizens, given birth, or the place of birth place, of their father/mother.

    The action of TIP-IS trade union has been also supported by the Turkish Cypriot Medical Association (KTTB).

    (AK)

    [05] Turkish Ministry is accused of distorting EU's Progress Report for Turkey

    Turkish daily Cumhuriyet newspaper (08.01.13) reports that Hasip Kaplan, member of the Turkish Grand National Assembly (TGNA) with the Peace and Democracy Party (BDP), has said that the Turkish Ministry for European Affairs has "made distortions" in the translation into the Turkish language of the last Progress Report announced by the European Union for Turkey.

    Kaplan argued that "very important distortions have been made" in the translation of the parts of the progress regarding the 34 civilians killed by the Turkish Armed Forces in Uludere area, as well as in the parts about the Cyprus and the Armenian problems. Kaplan expressed the view that the distortions have been made to deceive the members of the parliament (MPs).

    Kaplan said that while in the English text reference is made to "34 civilians killed by Turkish Armed Forces", the text in Turkish refers to "those who lost their lives in Uludere". He also noted that while the European Commission's text in English refers to the "Republic of Cyprus" and the "Ecumenical Patriarchate", the text of the Turkish Ministry referred to "Greek Cypriot Sector" and "Greek Patriarchate". Kaplan went on and said also, that the word "so-called" was added in the Turkish text in front of the expression "Armenian issue".

    (I/Ts.)

    [06] Erdogan: "Turkey only saw brotherhood in Africa on the contrary to other countries which saw diamonds"

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (07.01.13) reports that the Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan said that Turkey was supporting Africa in all areas.

    Speaking at Gabon's Parliament on Monday, Erdogan said that Turkey only saw common history, friendship and brotherhood in Africa, contrary to other countries which saw diamonds, gold, mines and underground richness in the continent.

    Erdogan noted that Gabon and Africa had a rooted and old history, and said that Africa could make contributions in shaping up the future like it shaped up the history.

    Erdogan said that besides Gabon, he would also pay visits to Niger and Senegal.

    Turkey is never distant to Gabon and African continent, said Erdogan, adding that Turkey was close to Africa in cultural aspect too. He alleged that Ottoman Empire had been a symbol of respect in Africa for centuries.

    In addition, Ankara Anatolia news agency (07.01.13) also reports that Erdogan stated that Turkey aims to increase Turkey's trade volume with Africa to $50 billion by the year of 2015.

    Turkish PM Erdogan addressed Turkish and Gabonese businessmen at a forum held in Cite de la Democratie, a neighborhood in Libreville, Gabon on Sunday.

    Erdogan said that he held his first trip abroad to Gabon in 2013 and added, "This marks that our relations will be carried a step forward." He underlined that as a government, their aim was to form a legal infrastructure for entrepreneurs and encourage investments. He added that for that purpose, they pay attention for economic agreements to be signed and become applicable as soon as possible.

    He stressed that the global economic recession during 2007-2010 influenced the trade between Turkey and Gabon and decreased figures. However, he noted that in 2011, trade between Turkey and Gabon started to develop and said, "In the first 11 months of 2012, the trade volume was $41 million. When December's figures come in, we can say that 2012's figures will be over 2007's."

    He underlined that they do not consider those figures enough and said, "We all know that the potentials of both countries are way more. In this new period, we will work harder and improve our cooperation in every field of work. Hopefully, we will increase these figures soon."

    Finally, he added that after his visit, a business council will be set up between Turkey and Gabon and said, "We attach importance to the formation of business council. In Africa, we have set up 16 business councils."

    Alongside Erdogan, Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Bekir Bozdag and Turkish Economy Minister Zafer Caglayan attended the meeting as well.

    [07] Turkey to seek larger share in Libyan, Qatari energy production ?Yildiz said that Cyprus economic crisis will affect the oil exploration

    Turkish daily Today's Zaman newspaper (08.01.13) reports that Turkey's Energy Minister Taner Yildiz said that Turkey is looking to dramatically step up its oil and gas imports from Libya and Qatar.

    He also said that Cyprus economic crisis will affect the oil exploration.

    In a joint press conference with Qatari Energy Minister Mohammed Saleh al-Sada, Y1ld1z said that Turkey "hopes to conclude a long-term contract" with Qatar, the world's largest supplier of liquefied natural gas (LNG). Turkey currently does not import energy from the tiny but energy-rich Gulf nation.

    Al-Sada stated that Qatar is considering a Turkish contract in conjunction with the bilateral development of an LNG terminal in Turkey. Y1ld1z was quoted earlier this week as saying that this terminal may have an annual capacity of 5-6 million cubic meters of natural gas, which would boost Turkey's capacity for LNG imports from Africa and the Middle East.

    Yildiz's Qatari visit came after he met with Libyan officials on Sunday over expanding gas imports from the war-torn country, telling the press that Turkey's stake in Libya's Fezzan fields includes "exploration and production efforts, but it isn't enough. We've applied for new fields."

    According to Y1ld1z's estimate, Turkey is looking to boost oil imports from Libya from 7 million barrels of oil annually, to 10 million by the end of 2013. Libya currently produces around 1.6 million barrels per day (bpd), a number which Libyan Oil Minister Abdelbari al-Arusi said in December would grow to 2 million bpd by 2015. Libya's oil infrastructure was severely damaged during the overthrow of Muammar Gaddafi in 2011. In 2010, Libyan oil production was 3 million bpd.

    The state-owned oil firm Turkish Petroleum Corporation (TPAO) and Turkish private oil firms will play an increasingly large role in the recovery of Libya's oil industry, said Y1ld1z. He confirmed that TPAO applied for additional contracts in Libya's fields in December. Turkey currently commands a 9.75 percent stake in the output of Libya's Fezzan field, the North African country's largest field.

    Yildiz also told reporters he expects that "Greek energy exploration in the disputed waters off Cyprus will not resume this year", saying that "the crisis will likely prevent any rise in tensions".

    Y1ld1z also signaled that Turkish firms will be heavily involved in redeveloping Libya's defunct power grid. "There will be $2.5 billion in investments in electricity infrastructure. Turkish firms will be doing about a fourth of that," he said.

    Speaking on Turkey's oil imports from Iran, the minister also told reporters he expects little drama in a coming round of negotiations with Tehran. Y1ld1z said Ankara is "evaluating" how much petrol it will request from sanctions-squeezed Iran in the August contract. Ankara is under pressure from the EU and US to reduce energy imports from Iran due to its nuclear program.

    [08] Turkey's Foreign Ministry: "Turkish military officials following each phase of deployment of Patriots"; The Netherlands began shipment of air-defense batteries to Turkey

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (07.01.13) reported that the Turkish Foreign Ministry stated on Monday that military officials were following and controlling each phase of the deployment of NATO's Patriot air defense system in the country.

    The Ministry recalled that NATO Foreign Ministers, during a meeting on December 4, 2012, agreed to send Patriots from the U.S., Germany and the Netherlands to Turkey, within the scope of alleviating the crisis along Turkish-Syrian border and defending Turkish people and soil.

    The Ministry stressed that the Patriots were completely for defensive means.

    Patriots from Germany will be installed in Kahramanmaras, from Netherlands in Adana and from U.S. in Gaziantep city, the Ministry added.

    Meanwhile, Ankara Anatolia news agency (07.01.13) reported from Vredepeel that the Netherlands began on Monday the shipment of Patriot batteries to Turkey as part a NATO request to help the country bolster its air-defense capabilities against possible missile threat from across the border with Syria.

    The two Patriot batteries are expected to arrive in the Turkish port of Iskenderun in approximately two weeks with nearly 260 troops under the NATO deployment that also includes German and US contributions, with each sending two Patriot systems.

    Speaking in a ceremony at a military compound in Vredepeel, the Netherland's Chief of Defense Tom Middendorp said that the deployment of Patriot batteries were purely a defensive measure against "risk of Scud missiles from Syria. And they won't be used to help impose a no-flight zone or to strike targets in Syria."

    Thirty Dutch and 20 German military personnel will depart on Tuesday for Turkey to make the necessary preparations at the deployment site in Turkey's southern Adana province.

    During the Iraq wars of 1991 and 2003, NATO deployed Patriot missiles in Turkey but they were never used.

    Cost of Dutch Patriot deployment is estimated around 42 million euro and it is covered by the Dutch government.

    The deployment mandate is limited to one year. Turkey has fiercely criticized the Assad regime and it hosts Syrian opposition groups as well as sheltering more than 150,000 Syrians in refugees' camps.

    [09] Turkish Commander Dogan's role as junta leader was confirmed in Sledgehammer opinion

    Turkish daily Today's Zaman newspaper (08.01.12) reports that a high criminal court in 0stanbul which in September of last year handed down lengthy prison terms to dozens of retired military officers on charges of plotting a coup has announced its reasoned opinion and confirmed the role of former 1st Army commander retired Gen. ?etin Dogan as the "leader of a pro-coup junta" nested within the Turkish military.

    According to the court, the General Staff and the Land Forces Command had knowledge of the Balyoz (Sledgehammer) coup plan and the pro-coup junta was unable to stage a coup d'?tat against the civilian government due to "circumstances beyond their control."

    On Monday, the 0stanbul 10th High Criminal Court announced its reasoned opinion concerning prison sentences handed down to suspects in the case and issued an international arrest warrant for one person and detention warrants for 14 others. The names of those people were not immediately available to the press.

    Sledgehammer is a suspected coup plot believed to have been devised in 2003 by a group of military generals with the aim of unseating the Justice and Development Party (AK Party) government through violent acts. Among the plans of the generals were the bombing of one of 0stanbul's biggest mosques, the Fatih Mosque, during the busy Friday prayer and crashing Turkish jets as well as causing other tragedies to shake the public's confidence in the government. The military, which has overthrown three governments since 1960 and pressured a conservative government to step down in 1997, has denied the existence of such a plan.

    A total of 365 suspects, all retired and active duty members of the Turkish military, stood trial in the case, and the court on Sept. 21, 2012, handed down 20-year prison sentences to three retired generals -- former 1st Army commander Gen. ?etin Dogan, former Air Forces commander Gen. Halil 0brahim F1rt1na and former Naval Forces commander Adm. ?zden ?rnek -- over charges of plotting a coup d'?tat.

    The court acquitted 36 suspects and sentenced the other suspects to 16-18 years in prison.

    The court said the pro-coup formation, led by retired Gen. Dogan, was unable to carry out its operations for a coup d'?tat due to circumstances "beyond their control," such as a heart operation Dogan underwent in May 2003 and then his forced retirement in August of the same year. "It has been ascertained that the pro-coup formation began discussing [members] of a government, to be called the National Agreement government, to take to office after the coup," read the reasoned decision. The court's decision also declared that the General Staff and the Land Forces Command both had knowledge about the Sledgehammer coup plan, and the latter had warned Dogan not to put the plan into action.

    Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan also spoke about the court's opinion on Monday and said he expects the case to reach a conclusion as soon as possible.

    According to the court, the General Staff confirmed that original copies of the Sledgehammer documents were at the offices of the staff, refuting allegations by the suspects that the documents had been fabricated by third parties with the motive of discrediting the Turkish military in the eyes of the people.

    The court also stated in its reasoned decision that all of the suspects sentenced to prison terms by the court had been implicated in the coup plot, and they were aware of covert preparations by the pro-coup junta to overthrow the government.

    [10] Turkey, US to hold intensified Iraq talks ?Erdogan may visit Washington in the coming months

    Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (08.01.13) reports that Turkey and the United States are to hold intensified talks on Turkish energy companies' involvement in northern Iraq, which has drawn Washington's annoyance and concerns that the rapprochement between Ankara and Arbil could further push Baghdad toward Tehran.

    Undersecretary of the Foreign Ministry Feridun Sinirlioglu is scheduled to visit Washington late next week to hold talks with his counterpart, Deputy Secretary William Burns, and other senior diplomats. Although Sinirlioglu's talks will include a number of serious issues varying from Syria to Iran, ongoing disagreement with Washington on Turkey's growing energy ties with northern Iraq, will be among the top agenda issues.

    Turkey's top diplomat is also planned to include bureaucrats from the Energy Ministry and other relevant ministries to hold detailed talks about Turkey's ongoing activities in northern Iraq.

    In an interview with daily Hurriyet, the Turkish envoy to Washington, Nam1k Tan, explained the fault lines of the disagreement between Ankara and Washington over northern Iraq. Turkey and the U.S. do not see eye to eye on resource extraction in northern Iraq, he said, while declaring that U.S. companies are not even following their own country's directives.

    "It seems like Turkey's acceleration of new projects with Iraqi Kurds in the north of the country has not pleased Baghdad and Washington," Tan said. Tan also said there were more than 40 U.S. companies in northern Iraq ? a fact that contradicts the U.S.' own arguments.

    Sinirlioglu is also expected to meet with the next U.S. Secretary of State, John Kerry, if an appointment can be made.

    Apart from its heavy agenda, the visit will also serve as a preparatory one for Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan's likely visit to Washington in the coming months. Sinirlioglu is also scheduled to visit Moscow by the end of this month to discuss developments in Syria.

    [11] The occupied Lefkosia "court" rejected Kucuk's appeal; Kucuk's lawyer to appeal to the "supreme court" today

    According to illegal Bayrak television (07.01.13) National Unity Party's (UBP) general secretary Fuat Namsoy and "prime minister" Irsen Kucuk lawyer Ergin Ulunay, filed an appeal against the "Lefkosia district court's ruling" regarding the UBP congress.

    Namsoy and Kucuk's lawyer Ergin Ulunay filed an appeal this morning against the "Lefkosia District Court's ruling" regarding the UBP congress at the "Civil Lawsuit Registry" today.

    Ulunay then went to the head of the "Lefkosia district court judge" Emine Dizdarl1 and petitioned for the decision handed down on the 3rd of January to be halted.

    After a twenty minute break the head of the "Lefkosia District court judge" Emine Dizdarl1 rejected the petition filed by lawyer Ergin Ulunay, noting that the ten day period handed down, was a condition and that this decision could not be changed.

    Making a brief statement on the issue, Ulunay said that their petition had been rejected but he would be filing a similar petition at a higher court tomorrow.

    Turkish Cypriot dailies reports on the issue in their front page under the following titles:

    Kibris: "It is not fair". The paper writes that the head of the "district court" rejected Kucuk's appeal who was asking for the UBP's congress to take place in ten days, providing as an excuse that the period of ten days is presented as a precondition, and thus, it finds Kucuk's appeal not fair.

    Afrika: "One more blow from the judiciary".

    Vatan: "Rejection to the appeal"

    Haberdar: "On Sunday in any case!" The paper writes that the occupied Lefkosia district court insist on the preliminary decision of the "lower court" for UBP's congress to take place the forthcoming Sunday.

    Kibrisli: "One more rejection to Kucuk".

    (AK)

    [12] Agreement is reached in occupied Lefkosia's "municipality"; The employees returned to work

    Turkish Cypriot daily Afrika newspaper (08.01.13) reports that an agreement was signed yesterday between the occupied Lefkosia's "municipality" and the trade union of the "municipal employees" (BES). The self-styled prime minister, Irsen Kucuk attended the signing of the agreement, as a result of which the employees, who had been on strike for a long period of time, returned to work.

    According to the agreement, the employees will be paid salaries for three months and their social insurance rights will be deposited with a credit which will be secured from the Turkish Agricultural (Ziraat) Bank.

    Kucuk said that they give to the "mayor" and the "municipal council" a deadline until the 29th of January to take the necessary measures for the solution of the problems of the "municipality". Otherwise, he added, we will ask their resignation.

    Kucuk argued that it would not be fair to relate the solution of the problem to the date on which BES would have paid a visit to President Christofias and added that it was not possible to search for the solution of their problems in the "south", as he described the government-controlled area of the Republic of Cyprus.

    Kucuk said that for paying the salaries of three months they will use six million Turkish liras as an advance of the payment they would make to the "municipality" in 2013.

    (I/Ts.)

    [13] Turkish businessman calls on THY to "rear up" the occupied area of Cyprus

    Turkish daily Milliyet newspaper (08.01.13) reports that Reha Arar, chairman of the Administrative Council of Merit Hotels, has said that the Turkish Airlines (THY) could contribute in the development of tourism in the occupied area of Cyprus. In statements to Milliyet's correspondent in the occupied area of Cyprus, Arar argued that the occupied part of the island "has a high potential in tourism" and expressed the view that "new windows of opportunity should be opened".

    Alleging that because of the "unjust isolations", no foreign airlines fly to the occupied area of Cyprus, Arar wished for the THY to help lifting occupied Cyprus's tourism to a certain point at least by holding touch-down flights without the passengers to get out of the plane from destinations such as Moscow, Tehran, Beirut, bake, Tel Aviv and Rome.

    He claimed that this would "rear up" not only tourism, but the real sector of the economy as well.

    (I/Ts.)

    [14] Turkish columnist says that many Turkish Cypriots feel they have been colonized by Turkey and are openly saying so

    Under the title "Both sides are losers in Cyprus", columnist Semih Idiz in Hurriyet Daily News (08.01.13) writes that the possibilities for the solution of the Cyprus problem are low and notes that many Turkish Cypriots feel they have been colonized by Turkey and are openly saying so, much to the chagrin of nationalist Turks on the Island and the mainland.

    "Expecting to preserve their own cultural identity against Greek Cypriots, Turkish Cypriots feel they are losing their identity to Turkey, whose province they clearly do not want to become", writes Idiz.

    He goes on and writes the following:

    "Had rationality been part of the equation, this problem, with half a century behind it, would have been long resolved. The fact is that the sides, even when appearing close to an agreement - as was the case with the negotiations leading up to the failed Annan Plan of 2003 ? have always talked at cross purposes.

    Greek Cypriots, in the final analysis, never had a genuine intention to share power on an equal footing with their Turkish counterparts as admitted to in so many words by the late President Tassos Papadopoulos in a teary eyed television address just prior to the 2004 referendum on the Annan Plan.

    On the Turkish side, it was clear all along from the intransigence of the late President Rauf Denkta who also had his teary eyed moment prior to the 2004 referendum on the Annan Plan that what was being aimed at was independence for the North under Turkey's protection ? or a settlement with the South that would amount to that.

    Meanwhile, having scuttled the Annan Plan in the April 2004 referendum, Greek Cyprus was still awarded with EU membership, which clearly took away any incentive to solve the problem, and which many in Europe are overtly or covertly admitting today was a big mistake. [?]

    This has clearly pushed the Cyprus problem onto the back burner for the average Greek Cypriot, who has more immediate matters to consider nowadays. Meanwhile, while trying to reinstate their sovereignty over the whole Island, Greek Cypriots will now discover what loss of economic, and hence political, sovereignty to international organizations will mean - the way Greece has.

    The situation for Turkish Cypriots, however, is not much brighter. Turkish Cyprus is today totally dependent on handouts from Turkey due to international embargoes on it prompted by the Greek Cypriot side. It is also in a state of economic turmoil, with unions up in arms and the average person on the street complaining about his or her worsening lot.

    Turkey's current economic strength will, of course, act as a buffer against total collapse in the North of Cyprus. The corollary, however, is that Northern Cyprus is becoming less independent and more dependent on Turkey as time goes by. Tellingly, the number of mainland Turks in the North today outnumbers the number of Turkish Cypriots, and there is little love lost between the sides.

    In the final analysis, it is clear that it will be the Turkish Cypriots who are the real losers in this whole equation. Whether Greek Cypriots will be able to argue that they are the winners, however, is a wide open question." TURKISH AFFAIRS SECTION

    http://www.moi.gov.cy/pio

    /EI


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