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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Cypriot and Turkish Media Review, 13-04-08

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. 66/13 6-8/4/13

[A] TURKISH CYPRIOT / TURKISH PRESS

  • [01] Davutoglu discussed the Cyprus problem with Kerry
  • [02] Davutoglu: "The economic depression in Cyprus cannot serve as a pretext for not starting talks"
  • [03] Statements by Simsek on the economic crisis in Cyprus
  • [04] Yildiz's interview to Hurriyet; Barbaros Hayrettin seismic research vessel will sail into the Mediterranean
  • [05] Kerry says Turkish-Israeli rapprochement vital for regional peace process
  • [06] Turkish Energy Minister invites oil firms to Black Sea
  • [07] Talat: The only alternative for the non-solution is the continuation of the status quo
  • [08] CTP's Fellahoglu is the new "mayor" of occupied Lefkosia; Turnout remained at 58.65%; Reactions after the "election"
  • [09] Applications to "Property Compensation Commission" are expected to exceed 5.000 by the end of the year
  • [10] The breakaway regime participated in the Saint Petersburg "International Property Show"
  • [11] Self-styled minister of tourism held contacts in Baku in the sides of the "AITF 2013 tourism fair"
  • [12] Reaction to the occupied area of Cyprus after the latest statement by the Health Minister of the Republic for the health services provided to the Turkish Cypriots
  • [13] Opinion poll on political parties in Turkey
  • [14] Turkey's defense and aerospace industry exports on the rise

  • [A] TURKISH CYPRIOT / TURKISH PRESS

    [01] Davutoglu discussed the Cyprus problem with Kerry

    According to Ankara Anatolia news agency (07.04.13), Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu had a joint press conference with US State Secretary John Kerry, who paid an official visit to Turkey on the weekend.

    Regarding Cyprus problem, Davutoglu said that a "window of opportunity" was opened following the elections in the Republic of Cyprus, and if this opportunity was assessed right, it would be the right time to take action for a permanent peace in Cyprus. He also said: "We expect the US to follow this issue closely".

    Moreover, under the title: "Cyprus on the agenda", Turkish Cypriot daily Hurriyet (17.04.13) reported that the Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu was going to carry out today a meeting with the USA Foreign Minister John Kerry, which was described as critical for the future of Cyprus and the Middle.

    (...)

    Referring to Cyprus, the paper writes that Turkey will demand the evaluation of the opportunity which was created because of the economic crisis in the Greek Cypriot side, for a viable peace in Cyprus.

    According to the paper, Davutoglu will point out also during the meeting with Kerry, that the insistence of the Greek Cypriots to unilaterally continue the oil exploration activities in the Mediterranean and to continue claiming the natural resources, will constitute the reason for a new tension in the region. The paper adds that in case that the Greek Cypriots insist in their stance, Turkey will make a warning, that the "TRNC" in its turn, will intensify its oil exploration activities in the "north", it will unilaterally use its natural resources and will also intensify the process for the official division of the two "sides" in the island.

    (AK)

    [02] Davutoglu: "The economic depression in Cyprus cannot serve as a pretext for not starting talks"

    Under the title "Turkey upset at new Cypriot President's attitude to North: Turkish FM", Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (online, 07.04.13), reports, inter alia, the following:

    "Newly elected Greek Cypriot President [Trans. Note: President of the Republic of Cyprus] Nicos Anastasiades should have met with his Turkish Cypriot counterpart [Trans. Note: Turkish Cypriot leader], Dervis Eroglu, after winning recent elections, Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said April 7 criticizing the new leader's actions in office so far.

    'The attitude [Anastasiades] adopted after the elections has created disappointment. Mr. Eroglu made a call for a meeting at the earliest [opportunity] and sent a letter. We were all expecting that both could have at least come together [by now], but the information that we have obtained lends the impression that this won't be possible in the near future,' Davutoglu said during a press conference in Istanbul with his Irish counterpart, Eamon Gilmore.

    Davutoglu said the economic depression in Greek Cyprus could not serve as a pretext for not starting talks.

    'We are facing a dilemma. When we say "Participate in the negotiations seriously", if they are strong and in a good situation, they take a distant attitude; and if they are weak, they say, "Wait until we become stronger". If there is an opportunity for a solution to a crisis that has been frozen for such a long time, you should not wait even a minute,' he said.

    The Turkish foreign minister also said the steps to be taken for a solution would ease Greek Cyprus' economic woes. 'If in 2004 the Greek Cypriots had not said no to a [U.N.-backed reunification] plan that Turkish Cypriots [agreed to], today such a crisis would not have happened.'

    Following his meeting with his counterpart from Ireland, which is the current rotating President of the European Union, Davutoglu also talked about the prospective opening of a first accession chapter in 2.5 years. If France lifts its veto on four chapters and the Cyprus issue begins proceeding toward a resolution, all chapters will be open and Turkey will be able to quickly conclude its accession talks, Davutoglu said.

    'One chapter is better than nothing, but if we want to move forward, it's not a giant step at all. It's like the blossoming of one flower in winter; it doesn't mean that spring is going to come. It's just half-opening the door,' he said. (?)"

    Moreover, Ankara Anatolia news agency (08.04.13) reports that the Turkish Minister of Foreign Affairs Ahmet Davutoglu, during a joint press conference with his Irish counterpart Eamon Gilmore after a bilateral meeting in Istanbul on Sunday, said he discussed also the Cypriot question with his Irish counterpart, adding that initiatives could be undertaken during Ireland's presidency to resolve the long-running dispute in the eastern Mediterranean island.

    The Irish Foreign Minister, on his part, said that the Cyprus government was currently focused on solving its economic problems, adding: "I hope they will be able to look at the greater political picture once they begin working out their economic issues."

    Gilmore said Ireland has been a staunch supporter of Turkey's EU accession, adding that the Irish presidency of the EU felt an obligation to move Turkey's membership process forward.

    [03] Statements by Simsek on the economic crisis in Cyprus

    According to illegal Bayrak television (06.04.13), Turkey's Finance Minister Mehmet Simsek, responding to questions on Turkey's Wall Street Journal via Twitter, said that the greatest contribution to save Cyprus from its current economic crisis would be to reach a solution to the Cyprus problem, adding that Turkey desired all its neighbours to enjoy stability and prosperity.

    "The crisis being experienced in south Cyprus [Trans. Note: as he refers to the Republic of Cyprus] does not please us in anyway. The bail-out package may have brought some relief but financial discipline in the long term is extremely crucial. South Cyprus only makes up 0.1% of the EU economy so I doubt the EU shall be feeling the impact of the crisis. However the haircut or 40% levy imposed on bank deposits greater than 100 thousand Euros could worry some EU citizens", Simsek said.

    Responding to a question as to whether Turkey can save South Cyprus, Finance Minister Simsek said that the greatest contribution to save Cyprus from its current economic crisis, would be to reach a solution to the Cyprus problem.

    [04] Yildiz's interview to Hurriyet; Barbaros Hayrettin seismic research vessel will sail into the Mediterranean

    Turkish daily Hurriyet (06.04.13), under the title "Are we Going to Sell Vegetables Together?", publishes the following interview with the Minister for Energy and Natural Resources Taner Yildiz:

    "Scolding America about nuclear energy, the Minister for Energy and Natural Resources Taner Yildiz said, 'If I am not going to make a $22 billion nuclear power station with my strategic partner America, what project am I to work on? Am I going to sell tomatoes and peppers?'

    Hosting a team from Hurriyet at the Ministry, Minister for Energy and Natural Resources Taner Yildiz gave some striking answers to many questions ranging from developments in energy to the solution process that is being debated a lot right now. Stating that talks were underway with China and Japan for a second nuclear power station, Minister Yildiz scolded 'strategic partner' America. Noting that the firm that won the second nuclear power station would also carry out studies for a third power station, Minister Yildiz continued:

    Triple Proposal for Nuclear Power

    One of the proposals we have received regarding the second nuclear power plant to be built in Sinop came from the Japanese. The Chinese proposal is of two kinds: one with them alone, the other with the French. France is a subcontractor not the main contractor and moderator. Half the nuclear plants in the world are found in America, France and Japan.

    Which One Is More Strategic?

    'We put this to the Americans. We spoke with all the high level decision makers. They were unable to fix the paradox. We are model and strategic partners with the United States. We need to do strategic work with them, do we not? If nuclear energy cannot be made as a strategic business what can we do as a strategic business? But they are telling us the project is not feasible. It may not be feasible but it is strategic. The strategic part is up to Washington.

    They Should Have Followed Through

    'If I am not going to make a nuclear power station with America, what strategic project am I going to do? Am I going to sell tomatoes and peppers? As a model partner we have a right to expect this. By not giving us a nuclear proposal they are not following through with this model partnership. I really would like to see America on board in this process. I am not faulting the model partnership. I am not faulting the fact that it is not being followed through. If we are not going to make a $22 billion nuclear power plant project with America, what project are we to do with them?'

    We Are Not Iran; We Are Open to Offers

    Taner Yildiz stated that the Russian firm Gazprom had decided not to work with southern Cyprus [Trans. Note: Republic of Cyprus]: 'This is an important decision for Turkey. They are crossing our lines in the sand. Those who say, "You are dependent on Russia" should give us alternative proposals. I cannot wait. We have things to do; we are busy. America is not filling in those headings. Turkey is a state with rule of law. This is not Iran.'

    Barbaros in its own waters within one month

    Saying that the Barbaros Hayrettin seismic research vessel purchased by Turkey from Norway for $130 million was in the Black Sea right now, Taner Yildiz said: 'From there it will sail into the Mediterranean. It will be in the Mediterranean within the month. In the Mediterranean it will go everywhere, including Cyprus. In one respect, Barbaros Heyrettin is going into those waters, its own waters.'"

    [05] Kerry says Turkish-Israeli rapprochement vital for regional peace process

    Turkish daily Today's Zaman (online, 07.04.13) with the above title reports, inter alia, the following:

    "US Secretary of State John Kerry, whose visit to Turkey came two weeks after US President Barack Obama brokered a rapprochement between Turkey and Israel, has stated that relations between Turkey and Israel are of great importance to the continuation of the peace process in the Middle East region.

    'We would like to see this [Turkish-Israeli] relationship that is important to stability in the Middle East, critical to the peace process itself, we would like to see this relationship get back on track in its full measure,' Kerry said on Sunday during a joint press conference with Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu.

    As part of his six-nation trip to Europe and East Asia, Kerry visited Turkey on Sunday -- his second visit to the country in two months -- to have talks with top Turkish officials on international and regional issues including Israel, Syria, Iraq and Cyprus.

    Kerry urged Turkish leaders to promptly restore full diplomatic relations between Israel and Turkey, the two American allies which the US sees as anchors of stability in an unstable Middle East wracked by crisis in Syria.

    Kerry stated that it was not up to Washington to set a deadline for Turkey and Israel to normalize ties, but stressed the importance of restoring a full relationship between the two countries.

    'It is not for the US to be setting conditions or terms with respect to what the Prime Minister's [Recep Tayyip Erdogan] schedule ought to be or what the requirements of Turkey are with respect to that process,' said Kerry.

    Stating that Turkish-Israeli cooperation will help to tackle challenges across the region, Kerry added that Turkey can be a key contributor to peace and that Ankara can also help with further development of the West Bank and Gaza.

    'It is imperative that the compensation component ? of the arrangement be fulfilled, that the ambassadors be returned and that full relationship be embraced but it's not up to us to discuss the timing,' added Kerry.

    Arriving after the Israeli apology to Turkey, Kerry's visit provided the first opportunity for a face-to-face meeting with his Turkish counterparts.

    (?)

    During the joint press conference in Istanbul, the first stop of Kerry's third trip to the Middle East in just two weeks in a fresh bid to unlock the long-stalled Israeli-Palestinian peace talks, Kerry stated that he appreciates the extraordinary cooperation that Turkey is offering and commended the partnership of Turkey in a range of bilateral and regional issues.

    According to Davutoglu, during his meeting with Kerry, bilateral relations, the political turmoil in Iraq, the Syrian crisis, ways to revive the Israeli-Palestinian peace talks, the Turkish-Israeli reconciliation process and the Cyprus problem were among the topics discussed.

    Later on Sunday Kerry also met with Erdogan, who is expected to visit the United States for talks with Obama on May 16.

    (?)

    The Turkish Foreign Minister stated that steps that should be taken about the Middle East peace process and the two-state solution were also discussed during his meeting with Kerry.

    'If an order is to be established in the Middle East, the birth of a Palestinian state within sustainable borders, will be an integral part of this order. The main target which we will never give up is the establishment of a Palestinian state within the 1967 borders as soon as possible. Turkey will support any step for the two-state solution and will continue to cooperate with the US on this issue,' said Davutoglu.

    Turkey would stick to its policy about the Palestinian issue, Davutoglu said, adding that Turkey would exert efforts to contribute to the solution process.

    'We hope that a new process with regards to the two-state solution based on the 1967 borders would start in the near future. And we hope that this process will turn into a diplomatic event. Turkey will continue to follow the principled policy regarding this issue,' said Davutoglu.

    Noting that he had held telephone conversations with Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas and Hamas political bureau Chief Khaled Meshaal on Saturday, Davutoglu said that Kerry would proceed from Turkey to Israel and Palestine to hold meetings.

    Meanwhile, Israeli Minister for International Affairs Yuval Steinitz stated on Sunday that Israel has rejected possible mediation by Turkey between Israel and Palestinians if the peace process aimed at achieving a two-state solution is successfully revived.

    (?)

    The issues of Syria and Iraq were also raised during Kerry's talks on Sunday with Davutoglu in Istanbul, his first stop on a 10-day trip to the Middle East, Europe and Asia.

    Kerry underlined that during the meeting with Davutoglu, war-torn Syria was specifically discussed.

    Thanking Ankara for its constant pressure on the Syrian regime, Kerry added that both of them have repeatedly said that Syria's embattled President Bashar al-Assad must go.

    Kerry also said that Turkey has been incredibly generous in taking in thousands of Syrian refugees in trying to respond to the humanitarian crisis in its southern neighbour.

    'The United States and Turkey will continue cooperating toward the shared goal of a peaceful transition in Syria,' said Kerry.

    Stating that the stance of the US with its active role in the UN was of great importance, Davutoglu stated that Turkey, as a neighbour of Syria, has a significant role.

    Davutoglu said that they agreed to hold a meeting of the Friends of Syria group as soon as possible.

    (?)

    Davutoglu stated that Iraq was the other topic discussed during the meeting. The Foreign Minister maintained that Turkey and the US have agreed that a political dialogue process based on a sharing of power and resources which will be participated by all groups within the scope of the territorial integrity of Iraq was essential.

    'Iraq's territorial integrity is of great importance to Turkey and it is a basic principle for us,' said Davutoglu.

    (?)

    US Secretary of State John Kerry has applauded the work of the Turkish government in moving forward with the settlement of the Kurdish issue.

    During a joint press conference with Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu in Istanbul on Sunday, Kerry also stated, 'I think all of us stand together in welcoming the commitment of the PKK [Kurdistan Workers' Party] to disarming,' Kerry added that the US salutes the Turkish government for its efforts to end the three-decade conflict.

    Kerry noted that no process is easy and that such efforts always take courage, determination and willingness to speak out and overcome years of mistrust. He also expressed a belief that the settlement process will have life-changing effects for the people of Turkey.

    Speaking on Turkey's efforts to draft a new constitution, Kerry said this will contribute to the efforts to end terrorism and strengthen democracy in the country. The secretary of state added that Washington hopes to see protections for universal rights and basic freedoms built into the new constitution. He said the US also wants to see laws that respect 'this country's remarkable diversity', an attribute he said is a source of strength. (?)"

    [06] Turkish Energy Minister invites oil firms to Black Sea

    Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (online, 08.04.13) with the above title reports that Turkey is inviting international oil companies to participate in oil exploration activities in the Black Sea, where it has already spent more than $2.5 billion, Energy Minister Taner Yildiz has said.

    "I'm saying we're open to working with all international companies which has an offer for the Black Sea region," Yildiz said April 6 during a visit to the Black Sea province of Gumushane.

    Recently, the government has revived efforts to seek resources through off-shore drilling operations in the northern part of the country.

    Turkey's state-run oil exploration company, TPAO, has been searching for oil in the Black Sea with Anglo-Dutch Shell, after a number of failed attempts by international energy companies, including Chevron and Exxon.

    The Minister said Turkey needed to boost its reserve discovery attempts because it must unearth underground resources to meet its energy needs.

    "Our country has a substantial size with its 780,000 square kilometres of land, but also with its 280,000 square kilometres of maritime area that we don't voice a lot. Therefore, we need to go over these areas with a fine-tooth comb," he said.

    The Minister also said Turkey was seeking to increase its gold production to 36 million tons in 2013 from last year's 24 million tons. "We believe there are [gold] reserves in Turkey enough to cover our [gold] imports, and we're paving the way to extract these reserves both with private and state companies," Yildiz said.

    [07] Talat: The only alternative for the non-solution is the continuation of the status quo

    Turkish Cypriot daily Haberdar newspaper (08.04.13) reports that the former Turkish Cypriot leader, Mehmet Ali Talat, commented on the recent statements of the Turkish Minister of Foreign Affairs Ahmet Davutoglu, that there would be either a solution or a division in Cyprus and said that the only alternative for the non-solution is the continuation of the status quo. Talat said that the recognition of the breakaway regime is not possible because of the resolutions of the UN Security Council.

    According to a statement issued by his political bureau, Talat made these statements speaking at a television program.

    Commenting on the current economic crisis of the Republic of Cyprus, Talat said that if there was a solution and the Annan Plan was accepted, then there would not have been a crisis.

    [08] CTP's Fellahoglu is the new "mayor" of occupied Lefkosia; Turnout remained at 58.65%; Reactions after the "election"

    Turkish Cypriot daily Afrika newspaper (08.04.13) reports that Kadri Fellahoglu was elected yesterday as the new "mayor" of the occupied part of Lefkosia. Fellahoglu, who ran in the "by-elections" with the Republican Turkish Party (CTP), received 7.033 votes or 34.82%.

    According to the paper, the other candidates received the following votes and percentages:

    Hasan Sertoglu (National Unity Party-UBP) ? 5.255 votes or 26.02%

    Mustafa Arabacioglu (Democratic Party-DP) ? 4.409 votes or 21.83%

    Suphi Hudaoglu (Social Democracy Party ?TDP) ? 2.852 votes or 14.12%

    Murat Kanatli (New Cyprus Party - YKP) ? 327 votes or 1.62%

    Arif Salih Kirdag (Independent) ? 164 votes or 0.81%

    Zehra Cengiz (Cyprus Socialist Party - KSP) 67 votes or 0.33%

    Yahya Eran (Independent) ? 50 votes or 0.25%

    Nurhayat Aytok (Independent) ? 39 votes or 0.19%

    Under the title "Those who believe in change with elections decreased", the paper notes that the "elections" held yesterday have been registered as the ones with the lowest turnout, as 15.335 persons of the totally 35.531 registered voters did not go to the ballot box to vote. The turnout remained at 58.65%, that is, only 20.196 persons used their right to vote, notes Afrika.

    According to the paper, this was the first success of the CTP under Ozkan Yorgancioglu's leadership and the first "serious defeat" of the UBP under Irsen Kucuk. "The winner of the congress", writes Afrika referring to the victory of Irsen Kucuk at UBP's recent congress, "was the loser of the election." According to the paper, the UBP under Kucuk's leadership has collapsed and there were signs that it would not come out as first party again in "elections".

    DP's candidate Mustafa Arabacioglu, who was considered to be the favorite for winning the "election", surprisingly came third, writes Afrika adding that with Fellahoglu's victory the CTP won again its "flagship", which it had lost for two succeeding terms.

    The paper refers also to statements by Nevvar Nolan, head of the so-called higher election council, who said that Fellahoglu should have to resign from the post of the "deputy", because he could not be both "mayor" and "member of the parliament". After Fellahoglu's resignation CTP's "seats" in the "assembly" will decrease from 15 to 14. The other parties have the following "seats": UBP 30, TDP 3 and DP 2.

    Meanwhile, in statements to Turkish Cypriot daily Havadis (08.04.13), Nolan said they would evaluate the possibility of whether "by-elections" will be held in June 2013 for the vacant post in the "assembly" after Fellahoglu's victory. He recalled that "general elections" will be normally held in 2014 and added that according to their "law", "by-elections" could not be held one year before the "elections".

    According to Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris newspaper (08.04.13) the two main reasons for the low turnout were: a) the fact that people stopped believing in the politicians and b) the "resentments" experienced within the UBP. The paper publishes the news under the title "Clear message".

    Kibris writes that in statements after his victory, Fellahoglu said that as of today they would work day and night and offer services to all inhabitants of the occupied part of the divided Cypriot capital. Fellahoglu, who is "elected" for a period of 14 months, said that 14 months are enough to be able normalize the situation in the "municipality" and offer services normally.

    Under the title "He asked for early elections", Kibris reports also that CTP's chairman, Ozkan Yorgancioglu argued that the result of the "election" was a sign for the general "elections". Noting that the "ruling party" received only 25% of the votes yesterday in Lefkosia, he claimed that this shows that the UBP cannot administrate the "country as it cannot administrate Lefkosia also" and asked for early "general elections".

    The self-styled prime minister, Irsen Kucuk congratulated Fellahoglu and added that he expects him to offer the best services to the inhabitants of occupied Lefkosia. Pointing out that the UBP delayed to start working for these "elections" because of its congress, Kucuk said that the public opinion polls, that had been held before the "elections", could not predict the result and that the race was between the UBP and the CTP.

    Serdar Denktas, chairman of the DP, said that this was not the result he was expecting and added that Arabacioglu worked successfully before the "elections". Denktas described as "important message" the fact that 42% of the "voters" have not used their right to "vote".

    TDP's candidate, Suphi Hudaoglu and the chairman of the party, Mehmet Cakici said that they were ready to share with Fellahoglu their proposals for solving the problems of the occupied municipality.

    Finally, Kibris refers also to the 15 members of occupied Lefkosia's "municipal council" who were also elected yesterday. According to "unofficial" results, CTP elected 6 members, UBP 4, DP 3 and TDP 2.

    (I/Ts.)

    [09] Applications to "Property Compensation Commission" are expected to exceed 5.000 by the end of the year

    Turkish Cypriot daily Gunes newspaper (08.04.13) reports that 399 applications have been made by Greek Cypriots during the first three months of 2013 to the so-called Property Compensation Commission established by Turkey in 2006 with the aim of allegedly solving the problems as regards the Greek Cypriot properties, which are occupied since the 1974 Turkish invasion and occupation of Cyprus.

    The paper writes that 100 persons had applied to the "commission" in 2006 and that the number of the applicants reached 4.759 for seven years. According to the paper, 119 applications have been withdrawn and 471 were concluded by the "commission", which paid 105 million 268 thousand and 533 pounds sterling as compensation to Greek Cypriot refugees.

    The chairman of the "commission", Gungor Gunkan told illegal TAK news agency that the applications had been sporadic in the beginning, but they gradually increased and this increase continues. He argued that the Greek Cypriots apply to the commission because of their needs and in spite of what he called as "propaganda" of the Cyprus government.

    Gunkan said they were expecting the number of the applications to exceed 5.000 by the end of this year and argued that this number could be further increased depending on the measures to be imposed by Troika on the Republic of Cyprus. He noted that especially the refugees' children and grandchildren, who have been born and grew up in the government-controlled area of Cyprus without knowing the occupied part of the island, are more inclined to sell their occupied properties.

    (I/Ts.)

    [10] The breakaway regime participated in the Saint Petersburg "International Property Show"

    Turkish Cypriot daily Havadis newspaper (06.04.13) reports that the breakaway regime participated in the "International Property Show", which took place in Saint Petersburg between 29-30 of March 2013.

    According to the paper, various firms and investors showed great interest for the fair. Jack Afik from Afik Group, Elizabet Ford from Myra Properties, Ramazan Karatas and Mehmet Madi Yerli from Property and Construction firm are some of the persons which participated in the fair on behalf of the breakaway regime.

    [11] Self-styled minister of tourism held contacts in Baku in the sides of the "AITF 2013 tourism fair"

    Turkish Cypriot daily Haberdar newspaper (07.04.13) reports that a delegation of the self-styled ministry of tourism, headed by the "minister of tourism" Unal Ustel participated in the "AITF 2013 tourism fair" which took place in Baku, Azerbaijan. The paper writes that Ustel held contacts on the sides of the fair in Baku.

    According to the paper, the Azeri Minister of Tourism Ebulfez Karayev visited the pavilion of the breakaway regime and held a meeting with Ustel. They talked about tourism in occupied Cyprus and exchanged views on various works and project. Alper Coskun, the Turkish ambassador of Turkey to Baku and Cafer Caferoglu, the Director of Azerbaijan Tourism Industry also visited the breakaway's regime pavilion. Ustel also held a meeting with Caferoglu, writes the paper.

    During Ustel's meetings, the improvement of various protocols signed between Azerbaijan and the breakaway regime, were discussed.

    [12] Reaction to the occupied area of Cyprus after the latest statement by the Health Minister of the Republic for the health services provided to the Turkish Cypriots

    Under the front-page title: "I trust my 'state'", Turkish Cypriot daily Star Kibris (07.04.13) reported on statements by Raziye Kocaismail, chairwoman of the "Help Those with Cancer Association", in the occupied area of Cyprus, who commented on statements made by the Health Minister Petros Petridis that the free of charge health services provided to the Turkish Cypriots in the hospitals of the Republic of Cyprus will be lifted, said that this decision will not affect those who suffer from cancer and added that they trust the "TRNC" and "motherland Turkey", as she described Turkey.

    Commenting also on the Minister's statements, Sibel Siber, so-called deputy with the Republican Turkish Party and doctor as well, said that the main reason the Turkish Cypriot cancer patients preferred "south Cyprus", as she described the Republic of Cyprus, for their treatments, was because the radiotherapy device at the occupied Lefkosia Burhan Nalbantoglu hospital, was broken. She went on and stressed the need for the "officials" to take action immediately so that the cancer patients not to be the victims.

    Also, evaluating the statement made by the Health Minister Petros Petridis, the so-called minister of health, Ertuglul Hasipoglu said: "we do not need the health services provided to us by the Greek Cypriot side".

    Issuing a written statement on the issue, so-called minister Hasipoglu recalled that the Greek Cypriot side suffers from an economic crisis and said: "Still, health services are holly services. The approach of the Greek Cypriot government that it will not support the Turkish Cypriots is an approach which is not acceptable. If the Greek Cypriots would like to be provided health services from us, we, with pleasure provide these. As the ministry of health, we can meet with a lot of health treatments in our hospitals. Our citizens can also have a small number of operations in Turkey without extra charges. Also the ministry can undertake all the expenses if necessary. In this respect, our citizens do not need the health services provided by the Greek Cypriot government", Hasipoglu said.

    (AK)

    [13] Opinion poll on political parties in Turkey

    Under the title "AKP's votes decrease as opposition rises, poll says", Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (online, 06.04.13) reports the following:

    "Popular support for the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) has decreased by 5% since the 2011 elections, while the main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) and the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) have seen increases, according to a recent survey.

    The survey, which was conducted by polling company SONAR across 26 Turkish provinces with 3,000 respondents, indicated that the AKP's voter support had decreased from 49.8% in June 2011 to 45.06% in April 2013, while the main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) maintained its position with a minor increase, with voter support falling from 26% at the June polls to 26.09%.

    The Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) has gained 4.2% in polls since the elections, climbing from 13.0% to 17.27%.

    The Peace and Democracy Party (BDP) has also increased its votes according to the survey, from 6% to 7.09%. In fact, the BDP took part in the last election with independent candidates and subsequently formed a group in Parliament due to the 10% election threshold.

    The polling company linked the AKP's decreasing vote share to the recently launched "peace process," which is backed by the BDP but harshly criticized by the MHP and observed sceptically by the CHP.

    [14] Turkey's defense and aerospace industry exports on the rise

    Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (08.04.13) reports that Turkey's defense and aerospace industry exports in the first quarter have surged by 11.5% compared to the same period last year, reaching $272.2 million, with 39% of these exports going to the United States. The chairman of the defense and aerospace industry exporters union has said the year-end target is $1.5 billion.

    According to data provided by the Turkey Exporters Assembly (TIM), despite the overall 10.2% fall in exports in March on a yearly basis, Turkish arms manufacturers managed to raise their exports by 11.5%, thanks to the 33% increase in the first two months of the year.

    The U.S. received the highest share of defense industry exports with $105.2 million, while Bahrain was second with $24.7 million and Italy followed them with $17.8 million.

    Defense and Aerospace Industry Exporters Union Chairman Latif Aral Alis said the sector had been on the rise in recent years and exports had been steadily soaring. Nevertheless, they still eye even higher rises.

    The sector's exports, which amounted to $600 million between the years 2008 and 2010, rose to $800 million in 2011 and soared to $1.3 billion in 2012.

    The target for 2013 has been set at $1.5 billion, as Turkey seeks ways to spread its success in exports of land vehicles, communication systems, as well as electro optical and light weapons.

    "After the completion of necessary infrastructure and financial systems, we plan for at least 5 percent of Turkey's overall exports to be in defense, aerospace and security products, systems, platforms and services in twelve years," Alis said.

    The share of these industries among Turkish exports was 0.8 in the first quarter of 2013.

    The defense industry's largest export items include plane and helicopter parts, turbojets, tanks and armored combat vehicles, civilian passenger planes, and rocket launchers, Alis added.

    "There are still more grounds to overcome ?The important thing is to present the essential solution in various ways and with a wide range of financial opportunities. We repeat this from time to time: the system is globally settled and even trying to challenge this requires a lot of effort," he said.

    "Turkey also aims to expand the variety of its export markets to Middle Asia and the Far East. Africa is expected to join the high-priority markets of the defense and aerospace sectors", Al?s also said.

    Turkey ranked the 24th largest arms exporter in the world in 2012, according to data recording major arms transactions worldwide collected by the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute.

    Meanwhile, the same data showed that Turkey had become the fourth-largest conventional weapons importer in the world. TURKISH AFFAIRS SECTION

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

    /EI


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