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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Cypriot and Turkish Media Review, 13-01-29

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. 21/13 30.01.13

[A] TURKISH CYPRIOT / TURKISH PRESS

  • [01] Reactions to the population policy of the breakaway regime
  • [02] Kilicadorgu criticized AKP's policy on Cyprus' natural gas
  • [03] Obstacles for the reconstruction of the demolished Ayia Thekla chapel in occupied Vokolida
  • [04] Amcaoglu on the project of transferring water from Turkey
  • [05] Turkish daily refers to conflict between illegal Turkish settlers and Turkish Cypriots in occupied Karpasia peninsula
  • [06] More reactions for Erdogan's Shanghai remarks
  • [07] "The Halki Theological School and the SCO"
  • [08] Erdogan met with Samaras; Turkey offered Greece to fund Athens mosque
  • [09] Thirty-eight thousand students have graduated from the illegal Eastern Mediterranean University
  • [10] Memur-Sen trade union has launched a signature collection campaign for the removal of headscarf ban
  • [11] The 9th Youth meeting of the Union of NGO's of the Islamic World started in occupied Cyprus with the participation of 40 countries

  • [A] TURKISH CYPRIOT / TURKISH PRESS

    [01] Reactions to the population policy of the breakaway regime

    Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris newspaper (30.01.13) reports that Cemal Ozyigit, general secretary of the Social Democracy Party (TDP), has said that his party opposes to arbitrarily granting the "citizenship" of the breakaway regime in the occupied area of the Republic of Cyprus in cases except for blood relations and marriage, and to employing people for serving a party's interest.

    In a written statement issued yesterday, Ozyigit argued that the National Unity Party (UBP) has granted the "citizenship" of the regime to 5.200 persons since it came to "power" in 2009 and expressed the view that the aim in the majority of these cases was to interfere in the "elections".

    "We oppose to the further change of the demographic structure of the country by the UBP for the sake of its interest", said Ozyigit describing as unacceptable the fact that while some persons live in the occupied area of the island for 20 years without being granted the "citizenship", some others are arbitrarily granted the "citizenship" only because they will "vote" for the UBP.

    Commenting on the statement made recently by the self-styled minister of interior and local administrations Cavusoglu that they grant the "citizenship" of the regime to 3-4 persons in every meeting of the "council of ministers", Ozyigit argued that the numbers given by Cavusoglu are misleading. He said, inter alia, the following: "Given that a year has 52 weeks, if we multiply the numbers given by Mr Cavusoglu by 52 weeks, it equals to 208 per year and 624 in three years. If ten meetings more were held, according to this calculation, this number would hardly reach one thousand. However, the UBP government has granted the citizenship to 5.000 persons in three years. Cavusoglu has either confused the numbers or does not tell the realities".

    According to Ozyigit, the problems in the occupied area increase together with the increase of population. He noted that serious problems exist in the fields of criminality, health and education. Ozyigit described as "tragic-comical" the correlation made by Cavusoglu between the issues of granting the "citizenship" of the regime and the military service.

    Moreover, he described as "nonsense" the statement made by Cavusoglu that their population is not enough and for this reason they will grant the "citizenship" to more people. He noted that while thousands of young people are unemployed in the occupied area of Cyprus, this mentality of Cavusoglu and saying that this is the policy of his "government" is "a great misfortune for the country".

    Meanwhile, Ahmet Kaptan, chairman of KTAMS trade union issued a statement yesterday on behalf of the "Communal Existence Movement" noting that granting the "citizenship" is a product of the regime's assimilation and integration policy. Pointing out that the demographic structure of the occupied part of Cyprus is mortgaged by changing the population structure, Kaptan said that they will not allow these assimilation and integration policies and impositions of the UBP and the Justice and Development Party (AKP).

    Kaptan argued that the increase of criminality in the occupied area of Cyprus is a result of the "wrong population policies" and added that the UBP granted the "citizenship" to more than 5.200 persons until today. For this reason, he added, the health services in the hospitals are inadequate and lack of teachers is observed in some schools, in spite of the fact that young people migrate. "What purpose does the further increase of population serve", he wondered adding that nowhere in the modern world the citizenship is granted for military reasons. He argued that the "minister", who has given this excuse, seemed comical in the eyes of the "people" and the world.

    (I/Ts.)

    [02] Kilicadorgu criticized AKP's policy on Cyprus' natural gas

    Turkish Cypriot daily Yeni Duzen newspaper (30.01.13) reports that Kemal Kilicdaroglu, the chairman of the Republican People's Party (CHP) criticized the policy followed by the ruling in Turkey Justice and Development Party (AKP) on natural gas findings in the Republic of Cyprus.

    Speaking to his party's parliamentary committee, Kilicdaroglu said: "Cyprus, found billions cubic meters of natural gas. Supposedly we would declare a state of war. We were supposed to send Piri Reis ship, which is dated from the time of our grandfathers, but we did not manage to event do this. Because we do not have a commander. Therefore, we have to start a new process", he said.

    [03] Obstacles for the reconstruction of the demolished Ayia Thekla chapel in occupied Vokolida

    Under the title: "They win the tender, but they did not reconstructed the chapel", Turkish Cypriot daily Yeni Duzen (30.01.13) reports that the constructor Hayrullah Kurt who has won the tender for the reconstruction of the demolished Ayia Thekla chapel, in occupied Vokolida, has stated to the paper that in spite of the fact that they had made all the preparatory works for the reconstruction of the chapel, yet, the officials of the Noah Ark Hotel did not gave them any response about the land into which the chapel will be reconstructed.

    In statements on the issue, Emine Pilli, chairman of the "department of antiquities and museums" has said that in spite of the efforts exerted, still, they did not had any response from the officials of the Noah Ark Hotel and added that the "undersecretary" of the "ministry of tourism, environment and culture", will intervene on the issue. Pilli confirmed also that it is the Noah Ark Hotel which puts obstacles in the process.

    The 200-year-old Greek Orthodox Ayia Thekla Chapel at the occupied village of Vokolida, was demolished on May 2, 2011, by a bulldozer on the ground that the Noah Ark Hotel was to be built there.

    (AK)

    [04] Amcaoglu on the project of transferring water from Turkey

    According to illegal Bayrak television (29.01.13) the so-called minister of agriculture and natural resources Ali Cetin Amcaoglu has stressed that all necessary measures have been taken for the successful realization of the project which envisages the transfer of water from "motherland Turkey", as he described Turkey, to the "TRNC" via underwater pipelines by 2014.

    Amcaoglu thanked motherland Turkey for its financial support to the "TRNC" in its preparations for the implementation of the project of the century.

    Projects and investments launched by the "Water Works Department of the Ministry of Agriculture and Natural Resources" during the past year, were introduced to the public with a press conference today.

    Addressing the press conference, Amcaoglu informed that a total of 44 water projects were launched in the past year, such as the renewal of supply pipes, construction of water reservoirs and the improvement of stream beds.

    Underlining the importance of the water transfer project which is jointly being conducted with "motherland" Turkey, he said that project works concerning the placement or renewal of supply pipes needed for the transfer of water have been completed and they now await the tendering process.

    He noted that other related investments envisaged for the year 2013 will also be launched and completed within the year.

    Following the Amcaoglu's speech, the "director" of the Water Works Department Hasan Senin, provided detailed information about the projects which are aimed at providing the people of the "TRNC" with healthy potable and utility water.

    [05] Turkish daily refers to conflict between illegal Turkish settlers and Turkish Cypriots in occupied Karpasia peninsula

    Under the title "Turkish-Cypriot crisis over the environment", Turkish daily Hurriyet newspaper (30.01.13) reports that the day before yesterday, people living in occupied Karpasia peninsula prevented the effort of a group of environmentalists to protest against the works for the broadening of the road in the occupied peninsula.

    The paper writes the following:

    "While the police interfered in the tension between the demonstrators and the people, the situation was further heated up when few local newspapers gave the news as 'tension between people from Turkey and Cypriots', because the majority of the people living in the area are people that came to the island from Turkey after 1974. After 'environmentalist' activists of the New Cyprus Party (YKP) had opened a placard saying 'governor, take your hands off our peninsula', referring to the Embassy of Turkey, the peasants of Karpasia rose up and closed the road. While a group of newspapers described the incident as tension between people from Turkey and Cypriots, the right-wing media featured that the people of Karpasia want a road. The peninsula of Karpasia is one of the TRNC's sensitive areas of strategic importance. People who have come from Turkey under the name of agricultural workforce after 1974 were settled in the peninsula, which the Greek Cypriots insistently want in the negotiations for Cyprus problem showing as pretext its historical churches".

    (I/Ts.)

    [06] More reactions for Erdogan's Shanghai remarks

    According to Turkish daily Today's Zaman (29.01.13) the Turkish main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) leader, Kemal Kilicdaroglu has slammed the Prime Minister for turning his back on the European Union and declaring his bid to join an Asian cooperation body.

    Kemal K?l?cdaroglu harshly criticized Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan for his remarks in a televised interview in which he said Turkey would abandon its bid to accede to the 27-member club if the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) decides to accept Turkey as its member.

    K?l?cdaroglu lauded Turkey's decades-long determination to turn its face toward the West and Europe and warned against breaking ties with the European bloc. The CHP leader claimed that Turkey is facing deep-running problems such as a poor human rights record and lack of freedom of press and that without Brussels, Ankara won't be advised to fix its problems.

    Speaking to reporters during a televised program aired on Kanal 24 late on Friday, Erdogan said Turkey is now seeking alternative options amid eroding hopes in the EU process with regards to the adamant opposition to Turkey's membership by a number of EU member countries.

    The SCO is a mutual-security organization which was founded in 2001 in Shanghai by the leaders of China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Russia, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan. The other countries, with the exception of Uzbekistan, had been members of the Shanghai Five, founded in 1996; after the inclusion of Uzbekistan in 2001, the members renamed the organization.

    Meanwhile, according to Turkish daily Today's Zaman (29.01.13) the Secretary-General of the Council of Europe Thorbjorn Jagland, who will visit Turkey next week, said that if Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan was serious about his Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) proposal, not only the council he represents but also the European Union which Turkey has aspired to be a member of for the past 50 years, should worry.

    One of the most veteran European politicians, Jagland also chairs the Norwegian Nobel Committee and was the Prime Minister of Norway in the 1990s. Known as a strong advocate for Turkish membership in the EU, Jagland said he wanted to warn the EU about Turkey's stalled accession process during his speech at the Nobel Peace Prize given to the EU this year. He said it would be a major mistake if the EU were to lose Turkey.

    Erdogan's remarks on possible membership in the SCO have raised questions if Turkey, a candidate to join the EU since 1999, is reconsidering its strategic affiliation with the West. Turkey has also been a member of the 47-nation Council of Europe, a larger group that also includes Russia, since 1949.

    In an exclusive interview with Today's Zaman, Jagland said he strongly supported the latest initiative between the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) and the government to sort out the Kurdish problem and warned against provocations. "The process will always be open to provocations. We saw it in Palestine and Sri Lanka. Very often, extremists could kill the process. Turkey should be careful about provocations like the one in Paris and I was happy to see it did not actually influence the negotiations," he said. While noting until recently that the Republican People's Party (CHP) was "nationalist and aggressive," Jagland said he appreciated the support the CHP is giving the process with the PKK and added that he endorsed CHP leader Kemal K?l?cdaroglu's policies to make the party more pro-solution. Commenting on CHP deputy Birgul Ayman Guler's remarks, which were deemed racist, he said they were "unacceptable" and added that "there are so many crazy people around."

    On press freedom, Jagland underlined that there were serious problems with the freedom of press and expression in Turkey, but strongly disagreed with the comparisons made between Turkey and China in terms of media freedom. "Comparisons with China are totally crazy. There are clearly problems in Turkey but it is not at the level of those in China," he said.

    (?)

    [07] "The Halki Theological School and the SCO"

    In a commentary under the above title, in Turkish daily Today's Zaman (29.01.13), columnist Orhan Kemal Cengiz comments on Erdogan recent remarks about the possible participation of Turkey in the SGO, connecting this issue with his recent statements that the Turkish government will make opening for the opening of Halki Seminary School. Following is the commentary:

    "Is it not interesting that two things happened almost simultaneously? Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan had said that Turkey may consider joining the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) instead of the EU. And a day later, we learnt that Erdogan instructed his bureaucrats to find a way to reopen the Halki Theological School, which has remained closed since 1971.

    You may think that I am referring to completely different and unrelated things. Let me try to explain my point in citing these two seemingly unrelated things: While the SCO represents a clear and unmistakable sign of Turkey distancing itself from the EU and the West, talking about reopening the Halki school represents quite the opposite, namely a friendly gesture to the EU showing that Turkey is acting in line with the stated policy of trying to expend efforts to join the EU.

    Through an unsophisticated evaluation, we can say that Erdogan is simultaneously trying to show the EU a carrot and a stick. I don't think it's a coincidence that these two things followed each other. In spite of pressure from the EU and the US, Erdogan has never brought the issue of reopening the Halki School onto Turkey's agenda so seriously. Why now, then? I think he is just trying to balance his prior statement on joining the SCO and abandoning the EU. So my interpretation is this: Like the Shanghai statement, this sudden declaration of the intention to reopen the Halki School is not a calculated statement.

    These two declarations represent two ambivalent desires. When Erdogan stated that Turkey may consider joining the SCO, he was giving an interview on TV. He was asked a question on the EU and he gave this answer. The following day we found a plan to reopen the Halki School on our national agenda out of the blue.

    Erdogan and his government are really fed up with the EU process. Like so many people in Turkey, they do not believe that these negotiations will lead anywhere. On the other hand the SCO may appear to be an attractive alternative for Erdogan whose thirst for power is never satisfied. On an unconscious level, the Shanghai cooperation may represent a wonderland for Erdogan to fulfil all his desires for an authoritarian regime: no outside pressure, no restraints from the EU and so on. However, Erdogan and his colleagues also know very well that a Turkey which stays away from the EU and which loses its connection to the West, may lose all of its attractiveness in the region in which it is trying to establish its hegemony and domination.

    So, like a person who is torn by ambivalent desires, Erdogan's seemingly mutually exclusive in direction statements followed each other. Both desires are real. And which one will trump the other depends on what happens in the outside world. If the EU continues with its own ambivalent attitude towards Turkey, Erdogan and his government will progressively slide to the East. If the EU becomes more supportive and remains an attractive option, Turkey will march towards this side.

    So these recent statements on the Shanghai cooperation and on the Halki School are nothing but expressions of ambivalent desires. I really hope that Turkey never loses its perspective and the direction represented by the reopening of the Halki Theological School".

    [08] Erdogan met with Samaras; Turkey offered Greece to fund Athens mosque

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (29.01.13) reported that the Turkish Premier Recep Tayyip Erdogan has said that he had offered his Greek counterpart to cover costs of a mosque to be built in Athens - if the Greek government sanctioned the construction of the Islamic prayer house.

    "I told him that Turkey could cover the costs of a mosque in Athens if necessary permissions are granted. And Mr Samaras showed a positive attitude and said that the Greek parliament had approved such a plan. We have reached to a mutual agreement that these issues can be solved through good will," Erdogan told reporters after his meeting with Greek Prime Minister Antonis Samaras in Qatar's capital, Doha.

    Athens is one of the few European Union capitals that have no mosques for Muslims whose numbers have been estimated to stand around 300,000.

    Asked whether the issue of the Halki (Heybeliada) Seminary in Istanbul could be handled the same way, Erdogan said: "Why not, that's possible."

    Erdogan later departed from Doha after concluding his talks in Qatar.

    [09] Thirty-eight thousand students have graduated from the illegal Eastern Mediterranean University

    Turkish Cypriot daily Volkan newspaper (30.01.13) reports about last-night's graduation ceremony of the illegal Eastern Mediterranean University (DAU) and writes that 1050 students from 37 countries graduated this years from DAU and adds that 38 thousand students from 97 countries have graduated from DAY since the day of its operation.

    In statements during the ceremony, the self-styled ministry of health Ertugrul Hasipoglu, praised the illegal universities in occupied Cyprus and said that their aim is to transform the breakaway regime into an "education island". He also said that this year the number of students reached 55 thousands.

    [10] Memur-Sen trade union has launched a signature collection campaign for the removal of headscarf ban

    According to Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (30.01.13) the Confederation of Public Servants' Trade Unions (Memur-Sen) aims to collect 10 million signatures as part of the campaign: "10 Million-Signature Campaign for Free Dress Code in Public Areas."

    "Memur-Sen, which is the biggest confederation of public servants with its 650,000 members, has decided to collect 10 million signatures by also including the opinion of the public in the process, to introduce it to the Prime Ministry," the union said on its website.

    The campaigners have held various actions including a demonstration in front of Parliament on November 30, 2012, and a civil disobedience action on January 2, involving going to workplaces with dress code violations.

    On January 25, a female lawyer entered a Turkish court wearing a headscarf for the first time, following the revoking of a regulation banning the headscarf in judicial institutions by the Cabinet.

    The general ban on wearing Muslim religious headscarves in government offices and public primary schools continues, although the ban has not been enforced in universities and is often ignored in some workplaces.

    [11] The 9th Youth meeting of the Union of NGO's of the Islamic World started in occupied Cyprus with the participation of 40 countries

    Turkish Cypriot daily Vatan newspaper (30.01.13) reports about the beginning of the works of the 9th Youth meeting of the Union of NGO's of the Islamic World which is taking place in occupied Cyprus between January 29-February 2.

    More than 200 representatives of NGO's from 40 countries are participating in the meeting.

    The youth leaders will discuss issues related to regions of the Islamic work which faces different problems. TURKISH AFFAIRS SECTION

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

    /EI


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