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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Cypriot and Turkish Media Review, 13-02-25

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. 39/13 23-25/2/13

[A] TURKISH CYPRIOT / TURKISH PRESS

  • [01] How the Turkish Cypriot press covers the presidential elections in the Republic of Cyprus
  • [02] How the Turkish press covers the presidential elections in the Republic of Cyprus
  • [03] Turkish daily Today's Zaman on Anastasiades' election to the Presidency of the Republic of Cyprus; statements by Ozgurgun
  • [04] Kucuk is re-elected chairman of the UBP
  • [05] Eroglu says his telephone is wiretapped; He will be satisfied if the "foreign minister" is accepted as negotiator in the Cyprus talks
  • [06] Turkey's MFA warns that it will response to Greece on the issue of the continental shelf in the Mediterranean
  • [07] Turkey's Deputy FM: "We will not allow south Cyprus to breach Turkey's continental shelf"
  • [08] Bagis irony continues; he expressed hopes for a more "serious leader" to be elected in the Republic of Cyprus
  • [09] Bagis calls on the Republic of Cyprus to open illegal Tymvou airport
  • [10] Merkel's visit to Turkey; She favors a new chapter on Turkey's EU bid talks
  • [11] Barbaros Hayreddin Pasa vessel was put into service
  • [12] Emrullah Turanli on the illegal Tymvou airport
  • [13] Grant program of the so-called Turkish embassy in the occupied area of Cyprus to provide 14 million TL worth funds to the occupation regime
  • [14] Imrali peace process continues; Erdogan and BDP remained silent over the context of the visit
  • [15] Davutoglu due to Genera to attend UN meeting

  • [A] TURKISH CYPRIOT / TURKISH PRESS

    [01] How the Turkish Cypriot press covers the presidential elections in the Republic of Cyprus

    The second round of the presidential elections held yesterday in the government-controlled area of the Republic of Cyprus and the victory of Nikos Anastasiades, chairman of Democratic Rally Party (DISY), is covered on the front page of almost all the Turkish Cypriot newspapers today (25.02.13). The main issue, however, is the second round of the voting in the congress of the National Unity Party (UBP) and the re-election of Irsen Kucuk.

    Kibris refers to the result of the presidential elections in the government-controlled area under the title "The 7th President" and reports that "Anastasiades, who received 57.48% of the votes, won the presidential election in the south during which 100 thousand voters out the around 543 thousand did not go to the ballot box".

    Afrika covers the issue under the title "Anastasiades could not win by the anticipated difference" and reports that "Malas worried Anastasiades". The paper notes that the newly elected President, Nikos Anastasiades increased the votes he had received in the first round of the elections by 12%, while his opponent, Stavros Malas increased his percentages by 15.6%. The paper writes that in statements after casting his vote, the newly elected President said he would "open a new era for Cyprus", but "the encouragement and the help of Turkey is also needed for this".

    Halkin Sesi covers the issue under the title "Anastasiades is the new owner of the presidential palace", and reports that no surprise was experienced during the presidential elections in the "south", as the paper describes the government-controlled area of the island. The paper writes that the chairman of DISY received 57.48% of the votes and Stavros Malas, who was supported by left-wing AKEL party, 42.52%.

    Yeni Duzen refers to the issue under the title "Anastasiades is the new President" and gives a graph with the results of the elections.

    Kibrisli writes that "Victory in the south belongs to Anastasiades" and that "things changed".

    Havadis covers the issue under the title "Anastasiades is President in the south" and refers to the increase of the percentages of the two candidates in comparison with the first round of the elections and to the statements made by the newly elected President after casting his vote. The paper reports that "Anastasiades sent a message to Turkey" by saying "we need for the Turks to serve for a solution in Cyprus and the help of Turkey".

    Haberdar writes that "The 'Presidential Palace' belongs to Anastasiades with 57%". The paper reports that the newly elected President will officially be inaugurated on 1 March and that in statements after his victory gave messages regarding the solution of the crisis and expressed the belief that the Turks and the Greeks could live together peacefully in Cyprus.

    Volkan refers to the issue under the title "The new Greek Cypriot President is Nikos Anastasiades" and recalls that the chairman of DISY had said "yes" to the Annan Plan in 2004. The paper gives details of the results on its front page.

    Star Kibris covers the issue under the title "The new owner of the presidential palace" and publishes a picture of the newly elected President of the Republic.

    Ortam refers to the results under the tit le "Nikos Anastasiades is the new owner of the Greek Cypriot Presidential Palace".

    Vatan refers to the developments under the title "Anastasiades is the new president in south Cyprus".

    Bakis covers the elections under the title "Anastasiades is the new President", but does not publish the final results noting that they had not been announced by the time the paper should close last night.

    (I/Ts.)

    [02] How the Turkish press covers the presidential elections in the Republic of Cyprus

    Zaman: "Anastasiades who has said 'yes' to the Annan Plan, the new leader of the Greek Cypriots"

    Today's Zaman (in English): "Anastasiades' priority economic crisis, not negotiation with Turks", "Greek Cypriot conservative romps to victory"

    Hurriyet Daily News (in Engilish): "Anastasiades wins election, vows for a solution accepted by Turkish Cypriots"

    Sabah: "Anastasiades, the 7th President of the Greek Cypriots"

    Cumhuriyet: "Greek Cypriots determined their 7th President"

    Aksam: "The Greek Cypriot side determined its new leader"

    Milliyet: "We need your help", "New era in Cyprus". The paper's columnist Sefa Karahasan points out that right after the newly elected President Nikos Anastasiades casted his vote in Limassol, he has sent "mild" messages to Turkey, stating that "we need Turkey's encouragement and help". Karahasan underlines that the new Greek Cypriot leader has signalled that what he wants is not to "quarrel" with Turkey, but to undertake turning steps towards solving the problems "harmonically".

    Karahasan continues in its column entitled: "new era in Cyprus" and writes that he had the opportunity to contact with a Greek Cypriot journalist, friend of him, asking him to say "How Anastasiades as a leader, will be?. Karahasan alleged that the Greek Cypriot journalist's response was striking since he said: "He is the same with Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan... Anastasiades is a decided leader, as Erdogan is. He implements the decisions undertaken, and if he wants to do something, he does it". About Anastasiades' stance on the Cyprus problem, Karahasan said that his colleague said: "It is said that he was a supporter of EOKA, still, in the past, everybody except communists, AKEL, were supporters of EOKA. It is a leader who eventually said yes to the Annan plan. He will exert efforts towards the solution".

    Ankara Anatolia news agency: "Anastasiades becomes new leader of southern Cyprus -57.48% of voters elected conservative and liberal DISI candidate Anastasiades as their 7th leader".

    (AK)

    [03] Turkish daily Today's Zaman on Anastasiades' election to the Presidency of the Republic of Cyprus; statements by Ozgurgun

    Under the title: "Anastasiades' priority economic crisis, not negotiation with Turks", Turkish daily Today's Zaman's (24.02.13) journalist Servet Yanatma reported from Limassol the following:

    "Nicos Anastasiades, the newly elected leader of Greek Cyprus, has stated that the priority of Greek Cyprus is to overcome the economic crisis before starting negotiations talks with the Turkish side.

    'We need some time to prepare ourselves, but first, the most urgent task is to face the financial crisis,' Anastasiades told Today's Zaman when asked about the Greek side's plans to start direct talks with the Turkish side.

    He also conveyed a message to Turkish Cypriots, saying it was up to Turkey to help Turkish Cypriots to restore unification on the island.

    'My message to Turkish Cypriots is that this needs courage and a lot of help from Turkey. We can turn this small island into a paradise. It is up to us, and it is especially up to Turkey to help Cypriots to restore unification on the island by withdrawing Turkish troops and restoring human rights,' said Anastasiades.

    When asked whether he was hopeful about the solution of the Cyprus dispute, Anastasiades said: "I am, indeed, but the people are going to decide."

    (?)

    Speaking to reporters immediately after he cast his vote, Anastasiades said he was absolutely confident that Greek Cyprus would have a new direction, adding that Sunday's vote marks a new era for Greek Cyprus.

    '[Greek] Cyprus is at a crossroads. The people of [Greek] Cyprus are today exercising their democratic right to determine what direction the country will take and in essence their own future,' said Anastasiades".

    Meanwhile, the so-called foreign minister Huseyin Ozgurgun told Today's Zaman that he doesn't expect "Greek Cyprus", as he called the Republic of Cyprus, to start the negotiations with the Turkish side in the upcoming days. "UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon will indeed be effective on this case. But I cannot estimate how and when he will be effective. We have made several calls to Ban Ki-moon that the TRNC is ready to start direct talks. However, there must be a 'deadline' for the start and end of the negotiations. The deadline is necessary because open-ended negotiations are always in the interests of the Greek side. These are all delaying tactics of the Greeks," Ozgurgun said.

    Stating that Anastasiades would be no different from other leaders in the Greek side in terms of delaying tactics, Ozgurgun maintained that Anastasiades would also try to delay the process or even not start the direct talks with the Turkish side until the beginning of the next year. "The Cyprus issue will turn again into an issue of the Greek side's delaying tactics and the Turkish side's willingness to negotiate. I believe we are facing a new term in which the beginning as well as the end are unpredictable. There is one thing clear: The Greek side believes that if they start the negotiations process as late as they can, this would be the best for them," said Ozgurgun.

    Reminding that Anastasiades has supported the Annan Plan proposed by the United Nations in 2004 to resolve the Cyprus dispute, Ozgurgun added that Anastasiades was not a leader who favors the solution of the Cyprus dispute.

    (?)

    "In fact there's a very fine point here. Anastasiades supported the proposal in order to be against [current President Dimitris] Christofias and [former President Tasos] Papadopoulos, as both figures rejected the plan. Anastasiades's 'yes' vote was to play to domestic politics," Ozgurgun said, adding: "Anastasiades' 'yes' vote is certainly deceptive. He will be a tough opponent to the Cyprus dispute. When he takes the office, he will certainly change his stance and I believe if the Annan proposal is presented now, he will definitely reject it," said Ozgurgun

    According to Turkish diplomatic sources, Turkey would like to see a leader in Greek politics who can deal with the Turkish side and can respond to the Turkish Cypriots' willingness to solve the Cyprus dispute. "The real addressee is the KKTC. We appreciate the efforts of the Turkish Cypriots to find a solution for the dispute. It is the real will of Turkish Cypriots," the sources told Today's Zaman.

    [04] Kucuk is re-elected chairman of the UBP

    Under the title "It ended at last", Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris newspaper (25.02.13) reports that the process of National Unity Party's (UBP) congress, which had been on the agenda in the occupied area of Cyprus for almost a year, ended yesterday with a victory for Irsen Kucuk, who was re-elected chairman of the party. The paper recalls that the process followed at the congress had been taken to "court". Irsen Kucuk was re-elected yesterday by receiving 708 votes, seven more than his opponent Ahmet Kasif, who received 701 votes.

    After the results had been announced, Kasif congratulated Kucuk and they posed together for the press rising up their hands. In his statements, Kasif said that it was out of the question for him to abandon the party and establish another party. Noting that they would participate in today's session of the "assembly" with his supporters, Kasif argued that Kucuk and his supporters might have abandoned the UBP and establish another party if they had lost the elections yesterday.

    Kucuk thanked his supporters, his wife and his family for their help in this victory. He added that the congress ended and that their aim from now on is to lead the UBP and the "country" to a better future.

    Turkish Cypriot daily Afrika newspaper (25.02.13) covers the issue under the title "AKP won" and writes that Justice and Development Party's (AKP) candidate Irsen Kucuk received 708 votes and Turkish Cypriot leader Eroglu's candidate, Ahmet Kasif received 701 votes. The paper notes that 1.412 persons out of the 1.427 delegates voted yesterday and that three votes were invalid.

    According to Afrika, in spite of AKP's big support, the hundreds of the persons that were employed before the congress, the distribution of credits and financial resources and the new delegates, Kucuk could not win Kasif with a big difference. After he had been re-elected Kucuk said for Kasif: "He lost twice. This will be questioned of course? As of tomorrow many things will change in the country".

    (I/Ts.)

    [05] Eroglu says his telephone is wiretapped; He will be satisfied if the "foreign minister" is accepted as negotiator in the Cyprus talks

    Turkish Cypriot daily Yeni Duzen newspaper (24.02.13) reported that the Turkish Cypriot leader, Dervis Eroglu has said that there were some allegations that his telephone calls are wiretapped. In statements to illegal TAK news agency, Eroglu noted that he had asked the self-styled minister of public works and communications whether it was possible for anyone to wiretap his telephone conversations. He added:

    "It is not they said, but it is also true that we have taken some measures having such a concern and that some visitors told us 'you are wiretapped, we are wiretapped, be careful'. If some of our citizens, who meet with some people, tell us afterwards 'be careful, you are wiretapped' and if they are forced to warn me as president, it means that we are living a very interesting period. It is a pity. It should not be like this. We could not know who is wiretapping... It is not only the presidency, as far as I know the speaker of the assembly and some other authorities are also concerned and try to behave cautiously".

    Eroglu was asked to comment on a statement by the so-called Turkish embassy in occupied Lefkosia denying information published recently in daily Afrika newspaper, that a meeting had been held at the self-styled embassy regarding the congress of the National Unity Party (UBP) with the participation of the Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Atalay who had called Eroglu and late Rauf Denktas "unreligious". When he was told that the "embassy's" statement tries to relate him with Afrika, Eroglu replied that he has no relations with the above-mentioned newspaper and that he is the politician whom Afrika criticizes the most. He added:

    "I also heard that some meetings are held here and in Ankara and some things are said. There is information that comes from people who love and respect us. It should be known that nothing said can remain secret. However, the embassy issued a statement on this and I believe that it is not needed to further dig up the issue".

    Asked to comment on information that he will be removed from the post of the negotiator in the Cyprus talks and replaced by someone from the "ministry of foreign affairs" of the regime and that the Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs is working on this issue, Eroglu said that the UN Secretary-General decides who will be invited to the negotiating table within the framework of his good offices mission. He noted that he is invited to the negotiations as the leader of the Turkish Cypriot community because he is the directly "elected president" and that the elected as President of the "Greek Cypriot administration", as he described the Republic of Cyprus, is invited as leader of the Greek Cypriot community. He added:

    "It does not seem much likely that this will change, but if some persons achieve the Foreign Minister to become negotiator, something which will be tantamount to the recognition, the acceptance of the TRNC, then I will be glad for this? No official told us during any of our contacts that the Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs is working in the direction of the removal of the TRNC president from the post of the negotiator. Naturally, our position is that there is no such a thing".

    (I/Ts.)

    [06] Turkey's MFA warns that it will response to Greece on the issue of the continental shelf in the Mediterranean

    Turkish daily Today's Zaman (22.02.13) reported that the Turkish Foreign Ministry announced on Friday that Ankara will take the necessary steps with the UN to respond to recent Greek claims over the continental shelf in the east Mediterranean.

    Referring to a recent verbal note by Greece to the UN over Turkey's decision to grant hydrocarbon exploration permits for parts of the Mediterranean which the Greek government considers part of its continental shelf, the Ministry added that Turkey will provide the necessary responses to Greece's claims, which raised the issue in its bilateral initiatives. "Such claims by Greece over the issue have no basis in international law. Since 2007, according to licenses granted to the Turkish Petroleum Corporation [TPAO] by Turkey, the country has sovereign rights for the exploration and removal of natural resources in the east Mediterranean. Turkey will continue to use its rights given under international law," the Foreign Ministry said in a statement.

    The statement further added that Turkey will continue to take the necessary steps for the protection of its sovereign rights while also continuing to develop its relations with Greece. "Turkey will utilize the dialogue channel established for the resolution of these problems," said the statement.

    Meanwhile, Greek Foreign Minister Dimitris Avramopoulos claimed that the areas Turkey had granted exploration permits for in the Mediterranean were deemed to fall under the Greek continental shelf. The Greek Ministry said that "directly upon learning of Turkey's granting of permits, the Greek government proceeded with the appropriate demarches with Turkey."

    [07] Turkey's Deputy FM: "We will not allow south Cyprus to breach Turkey's continental shelf"

    According to Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (22.02.13) Turkey's Deputy Foreign Minister Naci Koru said during a Twitter interview with the International Relations Council of Turkey (UIK) on February 22, that Ankara won't allow "south Cyprus", as he called the Republic of Cyprus, to breach Turkey's continental shelf for exploration of oil and gas in the Eastern Mediterranean.

    "Our country and northern Cyprus have objected to exploration activities [conducted] by south Cyprus. The unilateral stand of south Cyprus means the extortion of Turkish Cypriots' rights," Koru said, noting that Turkey had previously stated that international firms who cooperate with the Greek Cypriot government won't be allowed to join new projects in Turkey.

    By conducting the interview using the social media website Twitter, the UIK also gave Koru the occasion to comment on several aspects of the Turkish Foreign Ministry's global policies.

    Koru argued that the seat Turkey held at the UN Security Council from 2009 to 2011, enlarged the horizon of Turkish diplomacy. "Our membership at the UN Security Council has brought our connections through the world further and strengthened our 'global playmaker' status," he said.

    Koru also emphasized that the "zero problems with neighbors" policy put forward by the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP), has contributed to the advancement of political dialogue as well as economical and cultural ties with neighbors, stressing that visas have been lifted in many countries as part as this policy. "This policy is based on the fact that [we should] focus not on our differences but on areas of cooperation [with neighboring countries]," he said.

    [08] Bagis irony continues; he expressed hopes for a more "serious leader" to be elected in the Republic of Cyprus

    According to Turkish daily Today's Zaman (25.02.13) Turkey's European Union Affairs Minister Egemen Bagis has said that "Greek Cyprus' ongoing leader", as he described the President of the Republic of Cyprus, Dimitris Christofias, was "a joke," expressing hope that the weekend election will yield a "serious" leader and pave the way for a peace deal between the "Greek Cypriot government" and the "TRNC".

    "I believe Christofias was a big joke," Bagis said in an interview with the French news agency Agence France Presse (AFP), published on Friday. "I am hoping that the new President and the new leadership in Cyprus will not be another joke, but a serious counterpart for Turkish Cypriots, Greece and Turkey to deal with," he said.

    Bagis also blamed "Greek Cyprus' ongoing economic woes" on Christofias. "The economic crisis is the result of their stubborn attitude," he said.

    (?)

    Bagis said also that Turkey would back any peace plan based on political equality between the "northern" and "southern sides" of the island. "I assure you any peace plan that is accepted by both sides -- the southern Cypriots and the northern Cypriots -- will be blessed and supported by my government, as long as it is based on political equality," he said adding: "That's the only precondition we have because we don't want to end up sending our troops back to the island once we withdraw them and the only way to ensure that there will be no need for a military presence, is political equality and it is up to the Turkish and Greek Cypriots to make that deal", Bagis concluded as saying.

    [09] Bagis calls on the Republic of Cyprus to open illegal Tymvou airport

    Turkish Cypriot daily Yeni Duzen newspaper (24.02.13) reported that Egemen Bagis, Turkish Minister of EU Affairs and Chief negotiator, has reiterated his call on the Republic of Cyprus to "lift the obstacle" in front of the illegal Tymvou airport so that the latter could offer services to international flights. Bagis addressed a symposium on the Turkish maritime sector "on its way towards the EU". He wished for the newly elected government in the Republic of Cyprus to "realize" that the biggest victim from the rejection of the Annan Plan was "south Cyprus", as he described the Republic of Cyprus. He argued that Cyprus went bankrupt when it was holding the term presidency of the EU and alleged that the reason for this was that "no one wants to invest in an island the future of which is unknown".

    Noting that the fleet of Cyprus is the biggest in the world but cannot enter into Turkish ports, Bagis said that Cyprus suffers great losses from this in the field of transportation.

    Referring to the Greek Cypriots, he alleged: "If you want to be saved, if you really want peace, you should lift the obstacle you put to the EU member countries to fly to Tymvou airport and we shall open our ports to you". He said that the Turkish ports had been open to Cyprus since 1987 and that if they open them again, it would not mean that Turkey recognizes the Republic of Cyprus. He went on and argued that in the same manner, if the EU member countries fly to illegal Tymvou airport, they will not be diplomatically recognizing the breakaway regime.

    "Just like many countries in the world today trade with Taiwan without recognizing it, they could very easily trade with the TRNC as well", he argued alleging that the Cypriots could achieve great prosperity together, "if they are clever".

    (I/Ts.)

    [10] Merkel's visit to Turkey; She favors a new chapter on Turkey's EU bid talks

    Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (24.02.13) reported that the German Chancellor Angela Merkel arrived yesterday in Turkey with a hectic agenda for talks with Turkish officials that will include discussions on the Syrian crisis, EU accession talks, the anti-terror fight and commercial ties.

    Merkel met with German soldiers deployed to operate Patriot missile defense systems in the southern province of Kahramanmaras, where 300 German soldiers have been deployed along with two units of Patriot defense systems, a day after the Defense Ministers of Turkey, Germany and the Netherlands visited the systems in Adana and Kahramanmaras. Turkish Defense Minister Ismet Y?lmaz accompanied Merkel during her visit to the German Patriot units.

    After leaving Kahramanmaras, the Chancellor proceeded to the Central Anatolian province of Nevsehir for a touristic visit. She was welcomed at Nevsehir's Cappadocia airport by Culture and Tourism Minister Omer Celik.

    Merkel will tour Goreme National Park in Nevsehir and travel to Ankara to start the official leg of her trip, during which she will meet President Abdullah Gul and Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan. She will also pay her respects to Mustafa Kemal Ataturk with a visit to his mausoleum, An?tkabir.

    Among the issues to be discussed between Erdogan and Merkel are recent developments in Syria and other regional issues, all dimensions of bilateral ties, Turkey's EU process, as well as Turkey's efforts to renew its Constitution and solve the Kurdish question.

    Before her visit, Merkel said on February 23 that she favored new talks to revive Turkey's stalled EU membership bid. Yet Merkel, who favors a "privileged partnership" for Turkey in place of full EU membership, stressed the outcome of Ankara's talks with Brussels should be open, and she remained sceptical about whether Turkey should join.

    Turkey has complained about Berlin's lack of support for its EU hopes and has accused the EU of double standards in conducting negotiations without full membership in mind. French President Francois Hollande said last week he was ready to unblock talks on the "chapter" or policy area dealing with help for EU regions.

    "I think a long negotiating path lies ahead of us. Although I am sceptical, I agreed with the continuation of membership discussions. We are engaging in these with an open result," Merkel said. "In recent times, negotiations stalled somewhat and I am in favor of opening a new chapter in order to move forward", she added.

    German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle, from Merkel's Free Democrat (FDP) coalition partner, called the standstill unsatisfactory in December 2012 and urged renewed vigor in talks. Even some within Merkel's own Christian Democrat Union (CDU) back greater support for Turkey, risking the Chancellor becoming more isolated in advocating "privileged partnership."

    EU Energy Commissioner Gunther Ottinger, a CDU (Christian Democrat Union) member, told daily Bild last week that "I'd like to bet that within the next decade, a German Chancellor along with their colleagues from France will go begging on their knees to Ankara, saying, 'Friends, come to us.'"

    "It is clear to most people in my party that the idea of 'privileged partnership' is defunct," Ruprecht Polenz, head of the CDU's parliamentary foreign affairs committee, told daily Berliner Zeitung on February 23.

    Instead, people should accept that negotiations will ultimately lead to membership.

    Merkel will also hold talks with German and Turkish business representatives and take part in a German-Turkish economic forum in Ankara. The high-level business delegation accompanying the Chancellor and her participation in the Turkish-German business forum indicates that the main topic of the discussions will be corporate-related, including the recent anger of the Turkish government to German carmaker Volkswagen.

    Another corporate issue likely to be discussed by the leaders might be the possibility of a partnership between national flag carrier Turkish Airlines and German air carrier Lufthansa, which was first mentioned by Merkel.

    Merkel had suggested the establishment of joint administration of the two carriers during Erdogan's visit to Germany in November 2012, drawing approval from the Prime Minister.

    [11] Barbaros Hayreddin Pasa vessel was put into service

    Turkish Cypriot daily Haberdar newspaper (25.02.13) reports that Barbaros Hayreddin Pasa, Turkey's new vessel for conducting seismic explorations, has been put into service with a ceremony held at Karakoy Port. Addressing the ceremony, Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan said that Turkey will carry out itself its seismic explorations which had been carried out with foreign vessels in the past. He noted that soon they will add a second vessel in these efforts.

    The Turkish Energy Minister, Taner Yildiz noted that only ten vessels like Barbaros Hayreddin Pasa exist in the world and added that in case they find oil or natural gas during their explorations they will discuss building an oil drilling platform at Tuzla Shipyard.

    The general director of the Turkish Petroleum Corporation (TPAO), Mehmet Uysal said that the vessel will work in the Black Sea for three months and afterwards it will turn to the Mediterranean. Noting that they are very hopeful, Uysal recalled that they had signed an agreement with Shell Company for explorations in the Gulf of Antalya.

    (I/Ts.)

    [12] Emrullah Turanli on the illegal Tymvou airport

    Turkish daily Hurriyet (24.02.13) reported on statements by Emrullah Turanli, chairman of the "administration board" of Tas Yapi Insaat, the company which has gain the privatization tender for illegal Tymvou airport in the "TRNC".

    In his statements, Turanli has said that due to the "injustice" of the international community to the "TRNC" and because of the fact that no foreign airline company carry out flights there, the island has not created the necessary potential and added: "We should not wait everything from the state. We are carrying out contacts in order to transfer tourists to Cyprus but still, in spite of the fact that everybody say that we have right, they do not take action".

    Turanli went on and said that Tas Yapi Insaat held several separate meetings with international aviation companies in order to promote the "TRNC" and added that their aim is to attract about 10 million tourists to the "island".

    Turanli has also said that the Tas Insaat Company has signed a 350 million euro project which included the renovation and construction of a new airport and said that their aim is to earn 1 billion euro in 20 years. Turanli added that they had already launched the construction works and spoke about the new "airport" saying that it will be a brilliant place for the future of the "TRNC".

    Stating that they are investing for the future, Turanli said that the current image of the "TRNC" that is a place of casino and gambling will change. He continued and said the occupation regime has a 50.000 bed capacity and pointed out that their aim to turn Cyprus in a position of a congress island. Turanli said that they are looking for places in order to built 5 different conference places with a capacity of 1000 people, each.

    (...)

    (AK)

    [13] Grant program of the so-called Turkish embassy in the occupied area of Cyprus to provide 14 million TL worth funds to the occupation regime

    According to illegal Bayrak television (23.02.13) the second second leg of the "Partial Grant Program for the TRNC", which is prepared with contributions from the "Financial Assistance Committee of the Turkish Embassy" in occupied Lefkosia, was announced at a press conference yesterday. Industrial, agricultural and tourism sectors hold priority in projects covered within the grant program which is going to provide funds worth 14 million TL in total.

    The project aims to create a new basis for investments worth 28 million TL.

    Delivering the first speech at the press conference, the so-called minister of economy and energy Sunat Atun said that increasing the added value in production and productivity in industrial and agricultural sectors, was among their major goals.

    Zekeriya Sarbak- the Secretary General of Turkey's Cukurova Development Agency, which is responsible for the technical leg of the project, noted that reports of technical content have been prepared as part of the grant program in coordination with the "TRNC ministries".

    Also speaking, so-called minister of agriculture and natural resources, Ali Cetin Amcaoglu, pointed out that many producers benefitted from the first leg of the grant program last year and underlined the important role the program plays in the economic development of the "TRNC".

    The so-called Turkish ambassador to occupied Lefkosia, Halil Ibrahim Akca for his part, stated, that such projects aimed to serve the further development of the "TRNC economy" and noted that there are certain criteria for people who are interested in applying.

    Delivering the final speech, so-called prime minister Irsen Kucuk said that the latest economic program prepared for the "TRNC" aims to improve the "reel sector" of the "TRNC" further and pave the way for new investments.

    "Although the TRNC is a small country and is being subjected to isolations, it should still have the potential of competitive power" Kucuk stressed.

    [14] Imrali peace process continues; Erdogan and BDP remained silent over the context of the visit

    Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (25.02.13) reports that a day after a key meeting between the jailed leader of the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) and a Parliamentary delegation, politicians involved in an ongoing "peace process" chose to keep silent for the sake of the process.

    Peace and Democracy Party (BDP) Deputy parliamentary group chair Pervin Buldan, BDP Istanbul Deputy S?rr? Sureyya Onder and BDP Diyarbak?r Deputy Altan Tan on travelled February 23 (Saturday) to Imral? island, where PKK leader Abdullah Ocalan is serving a life sentence, following permission from the government for a visit conducted as part of a process involving talks with Ocalan to convince PKK militants to lay down their arms. This recent visit to the island was the second trip made as part of the ongoing peace process, following Ahmet Turk and Ayla Akat's visit on January 3.

    As of February 24, both Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan and BDP co-leader Selahattin Demirtas have refrained from making any substantial statements on details or results of the meeting, or what the promises, if any, were made during talks.

    Demirtas, speaking at a party meeting in the south-eastern province of Ad?yaman, said on February 24 that everybody should support the recent process in order for bloodshed to be stopped. "Supporting the peace process does not mean supporting the ruling party. We are backing peace, not the ruling party," Demirtas said, adding that other opposition parties should also support the process for resolution.

    Erdogan, who departed for the United Arab Emirates on February 23, said he would comment on the BDP's visit and their messages after returning to Turkey.

    With diplomats directly involved in the process moving forward with such a cautious approach, the attention has focused on the content of a message conveyed by the BDP's Buldan.

    Ocalan signalled that captives being kept by the PKK may be released soon, which would be perceived as a positive step to move the process forward. Ocalan's message was conveyed by Buldan following their meeting.

    "The state has [certain] captives in its hands. So does the PKK. The PKK has to treat its captives very well. I hope they will rejoin their families in the shortest amount of time," Ocalan was cited as having said by Buldan.

    "This meeting is a historic step. We are going through a historic process," Ocalan wrote in a letter being read to reporters by Buldan. "All parties should be very careful and sensitive throughout this process," Ocalan's letter read.

    Without responding to reporters' questions, Buldan said the BDP co-chairs would make statements and share notes from the meeting "when the time [was] adequate."

    The visit lasted around eight hours in total. Two officials from the National Intelligence Organization (MIT) accompanied lawmakers during their visit to Imral? island. One MIT official reportedly participated in the Deputies' meeting with Ocalan. The three lawmakers met with BDP co-chairs after they returned to Istanbul the night of February 23 and reportedly conveyed Ocalan's messages. One of the BDP co-chairs is expected to explain the details of the meeting to the public on tomorrow or February 27 this week.

    Ocalan's message regarding captives kept by the PKK is an issue that has recently been publicly voiced by captives' families. The PKK accelerated its abduction campaigns after July 2011. Between July 2011 and August 2012 it kidnapped more than 145 people, compared to 154 recorded between 1990 and 2010, according to statistics from the Human Rights Foundation (IHD). The targets were generally civil servants such as teachers, soldiers and bureaucrats. Many were released but dozens are still being held in captivity.

    (?)

    [15] Davutoglu due to Genera to attend UN meeting

    According to Ankara Anatolia news agency (24.02.13) the Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu will leave for Geneva to attend UN's 22nd regular session of the Human Rights Council meeting which will take place February 25-March 22.

    Turkish Foreign Ministry on Sunday has said that important incidents about human rights in the world will be discussed in the meeting.

    Davutoglu will depart from Turkey on Monday, and he will address the Council on morning session.

    Nearly 80 high-level officials of UN member states are expected to attend the meeting. TURKISH AFFAIRS SECTION

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

    /EI


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