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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Cypriot and Turkish Media Review, 13-04-12

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. 70/13 12/4/13

[A] TURKISH CYPRIOT / TURKISH PRESS

  • [01] Statements by Ertug on the Cyprus problem; Eroglu to brief political parties
  • [02] Noble Energy considers pipeline from Israel to Turkey
  • [03] Israel sees 'Med-Streams' in service of regional diplomacy
  • [04] Turkey has a long-term policy to gradually increase the population in occupied Cyprus; 28.000 settlers will be granted "citizenship"
  • [05] Initiatives by the occupation regime to implement the "touchdown system" in cooperation with the Turkish Airlines
  • [06] Regime's "central bank" warns that they might experience "the same problems as their neighbors"
  • [07] Concerns for people trafficking for organs in the occupied Cyprus
  • [08] Foreigners consider to transfer money to the occupied part of Cyprus and purchase property; Columnist: the regime turned blind eye when foreigners who had purchased property were cheated
  • [09] Elcil described the lifting of free health services to the Turkish Cypriots by the Republic of Cyprus as a racist discrimination
  • [10] Kucuk: "The allegations for cabinet reshuffle are groundless"
  • [11] Tumerkan is the new director of "BRT"
  • [12] Columnist in Turkish Cypriot daily speaks about buying off votes during the illegal by-elections which took place at the occupied Lefkosia "municipality"
  • [13] Turkey's 4th judicial package passes into law with critical last-minute amendment

  • [A] TURKISH CYPRIOT / TURKISH PRESS

    [01] Statements by Ertug on the Cyprus problem; Eroglu to brief political parties

    According to illegal Bayrak television (11.04.13), Turkish Cypriot leader Dervis Eroglu's special representative and spokesman Osman Ertug, speaking on a television channel, claimed that the Turkish Cypriot side was ready to take necessary steps towards reaching a comprehensive solution to the Cyprus problem.

    Ertug claimed that the two leaders had initially agreed to come together for dinner on the 25th of April but that the Greek Cypriot side reportedly wanted later to postpone the meeting.

    Claiming the Greek Cypriot leadership was in an inclination to run away from dialogue and to reject a solution plans, Ertug said that this view was voiced not just by them but by the former Greek Cypriot Foreign Minister Nicos Rolandis himself.

    "It is openly clear that the Greek Cypriot side does not want to share power, authority or wealth with the Turkish Cypriots. We may not talk about wealth at the moment but we can talk about potential wealth which is related as to how revenues generated from hydrocarbons will be distributed", he said.

    Reminding that the Turkish Cypriot side had made numerous proposals on the issue of hydrocarbons in 2011 and 2012, Ertug said: "We have stated time and time again the most feasible and profitable way of exporting the natural gas will be over Turkey."

    Ertug also said that they had proposed to the Greek Cypriot leader Nicos Anastasiades, who faced a serious economic crisis, as soon as he was elected to make use of the hydrocarbon opportunity together.

    Meanwhile, Turkish Cypriot daily Gunes (12.04.13) reports that the Turkish Cypriot leader Dervis Eroglu will meet with the Turkish Cypriot political parties, which are represented in the so-called assembly, on the 16th of April to brief them on the latest stage of the Cyprus problem as well as to exchange views.

    [02] Noble Energy considers pipeline from Israel to Turkey

    Turkish daily Today's Zaman (online, 11.04.13) with the above title reports that US energy firm Noble Energy has stated that the company has already started to work on possibilities to launch an energy project between Turkey and Israel, regional powers who have recently normalized their ties.

    The Texas-based Noble Energy possesses 36% share of the natural gas discovered in the Tamar field off Israel's Mediterranean shores in 2009. Company CEO Charles Davidson has said in a statement that the possibilities are being elaborated by the company to pipe the newly discovered Israeli gas to Turkey.

    "We are targeting two-fold growth in the upcoming five years. We are planning to double our production as well as our reserves and cash flow," Davidson said during his trip to Israel, while commenting on the company's outlook.

    Prior to his visit to Israel, Davidson travelled to Cyprus and said the company prefers first to liquefy the natural gas in plants on the island and then export it as liquefied natural gas (LNG).

    The Cyprus Government stated in late March that they are seeking financial support to build energy infrastructure such as the facilities to convert the gas into LNG. Israel has suggested that Cyprus build such a plant to process both Cypriot and Israeli natural gas, the latter of which has been discovered in even bigger quantities in nearby waters.

    Cyprus reported its first natural gas discovery in December, when Noble Energy said it had discovered an estimated 5 to 8 trillion cubic feet in a block south of the island. Davidson said that the discovered gas reserves go beyond the needs of both Israel and Cyprus and estimated that initial drilling, scheduled to begin in June, will last 75-90 days. He also said that economic difficulties in Cyprus have not hurts gas operations on the island, and if anything, have even accelerated them.

    Cyprus signed a deal with Noble Energy in 2008 offering the US-based firm a right to explore the offshore block. Davidson also said that the company is looking for a strategic partner for drilling for the gas and that the firm has already discussed the issue with Cyprus.

    [03] Israel sees 'Med-Streams' in service of regional diplomacy

    Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (online, 12.04.13), under the above title, reports the following:

    "Building a pipeline that will carry Israeli gas to Turkey would enhance political normalization between two countries, Israeli envoy says, contrary to Turkish efforts to separate two processes.

    Transferring Israeli gas through Turkey to the international market is profitable for both Turkey and Israel and cooperation in the energy field could pave the way for resolving regional problems, a senior diplomat from the Jewish state said, as he apparently referred to probable normalization of bilateral relations between Turkey and Israel with the help of such cooperation at a bilateral level.

    'We should start thinking at least about a set of Med-Streams, a set of pipelines and LNG that will enable us to exploit not only oil and gas, but also to create another political environment,' Ambassador Michael Lotem, Special Envoy for Energy of the Israeli Foreign Ministry, said yesterday, referring to prospects of building of a pipeline from Israel to Turkey.

    'Can we use energy; can we use gas, beyond the commercial value of it, in the service of politics, in the service of diplomacy?' Lotem asked in a speech delivered at the second and last day of the 12th Turkish International Oil and Gas Conference (TUROGE).

    'I say that we should? and if we are talking about [it], especially for Turkey, for Europe,' the Israeli ambassador said, citing the BTC project, which he describes 'a valued example of how an energy project can initiate geopolitics'.

    Lotem was among the speakers in a session on the East Mediterranean as part of a panel titled 'Potential Sources of Alternative Supplies ? Regional Developments'.

    Elaborating on different options to transport Israeli gas to international markets, Lotem cited Cyprus as 'the nearest EU-friend country of Israel'.

    There was a lot of talk about taking Israeli gas to an LNG facility in Cyprus, the diplomat said, adding that we have to remember some strongly recommended that the Israeli export facility be in Israel .

    'We have strong natural interests in the present,' he said, noting voices from Turkey that have said the country is a natural market for Israeli gas.

    The Israeli diplomat also cited other voices within Israel, those asking if the Jewish state should 'take risks that would subject them to pipeline-politics'.

    'I strongly believe that Turkey has proven a very positive record of not connecting these issues,' Lotem said, adding that the BTC pipeline is running smoothly without interruption.

    Although Israel showed its hand for energy cooperation with Turkey, Ankara has fallen behind intentionally to avoid any interpretation of connecting the issue of the apology Israel offered for the Mavi Marmara victims and the oil-gas bonanza in the region.

    Energy Minister Taner Yildiz in earlier remarks repeatedly said that discussing energy deals before the restoration of ties between Turkey and Israel had been finalized would be impossible."

    [04] Turkey has a long-term policy to gradually increase the population in occupied Cyprus; 28.000 settlers will be granted "citizenship"

    Under the title "28 citizenships on the table", Turkish Cypriot daily Kibrisli newspaper (12.04.13) reports that after the news it published yesterday on the regime's preparing to grant its so-called citizenship to 100.000 persons, it obtained new information on the issue.

    Citing "sources", the paper writes that "demands" on the issue of "citizenship" have for a long time been coming to the "interior ministry" and that Turkey's intention is to make a long-term move on this issue. The authorities of Turkey think that the population in the occupied area of Cyprus is not enough and their target is to increase the population by granting the "citizenship" to 20.000-30.000 persons at the first stage and to the same number at each of the next stages.

    It is noted that within this framework demands are continuously conveyed to the "ministry of internal affairs and local administrations" regarding the gradual granting of the "citizenship" to more persons.

    Citing "reliable sources", the paper reports that 28.000 new files on "citizenship" issues exist at the "ministry" and Turkey emphasizes that more persons should be granted the "citizenship" starting from these files.

    It is argued that these 28.000 cases have been for a long time waiting in the "ministry" because the self-styled "minister of interior", Nazim Cavusoglu has no positive look for this issue.

    The paper recalls that yesterday it reported that Turkish officials were not pleased with Cavusoglu's stance and insisted that another person should be appointed to his place in the first "reshuffle".

    Turkish Cypriot daily Afrika newspaper (12.04.13) also refers to the issue and reports that according to information published by Kibris Postasi newspaper, the so-called embassy of Turkey to occupied Lefkosia exerts pressures on Cavusoglu on this issue. Under the title "New citizenships are imposed", the paper writes that some members of the "ruling" National Unity Party (UBP) express the view that "prime minister" Irsen Kucuk is trying to implement without questioning the decisions of the "embassy" which come to him in the form of "suggestions" and that is why he is taking wrong decisions, the price of which will be paid by the Turkish Cypriots. The same officials said that Cavusoglu's removal from his "office" had come onto the agenda because he questioned these decisions.

    (I/Ts.)

    [05] Initiatives by the occupation regime to implement the "touchdown system" in cooperation with the Turkish Airlines

    Under the title: "Catching of tourist in Cyprus", Turkish daily Sabah newspaper (12.04.13-online version) reports that the Turkish Cypriot tourist agents have taken action utilizing the opportunity of the economic crisis experienced in "south Cyprus", as the paper describes the Republic of Cyprus. In the framework of this action, the "TRNC government", as the so-called government is called, is exerting efforts together with the Turkish airlines to lift the "isolation" and also to attract tourists who planned to visit the Greek Cypriot side.

    As the paper writes, the Turkish Cypriot travel agents expect the support of the Turkish Airlines since they demanded the European tourists to land to the "TRNC" with the "touchdown system".

    In statements on the issue, the chairman of the "administration board" of the Merit Tourism Group, Reha Arar, underlining that the "isolation" of the occupation regime by the European countries is the most important difficulty the aviation sector faces, said: "The European tourists are coming to north Cyprus either with scheduled flights or with charter flights. We have asked from the Turkish Airlines the developments of the 'touchdown system'. With this system, the tourists who want to come to the TRNC will land firsts to Antalya but they will directly flight here without to be necessary to wait there".

    Arar stated also that the number of tourists from Europe will be increase to 25% this year and added that they expect around 1 million tourists for this year.

    In statements also, Sami Turkay, CEO of Kaya Hotels and Resorts said that tourists from the "south", pay one-day visits to the "TRNC", however, this is not very frequent because of the political pressure which is exerted, as he said. He continued adding that if the problem of transportation is not overcome, there will not be a remarkable increase on the number of tourists from Europe.

    (AK)

    [06] Regime's "central bank" warns that they might experience "the same problems as their neighbors"

    Under the title "Central Bank: We may also experience the same problems", Turkish Cypriot daily Afrika newspaper (12.04.13) reports that the so-called central bank of the breakaway regime in the occupied area of Cyprus, has made "a not accustomed warning".

    In a statement in the "annual report" of the "bank" for 2012, its director, Bilal San said that they have to do what is necessary without delay in order for not experiencing the problems that exist in their "neighboring countries". San noted that the problems of the banking sector influence the entire community and the economy.

    According to the report, the assets of the "bank" increased by 18.2% comparing to the last year and reached 2.6 billion Turkish liras (TL) in 2012. The "bank's" equity capital increased by 11.32% in the same period and rose to 261 million TL.

    (I/Ts.)

    [07] Concerns for people trafficking for organs in the occupied Cyprus

    Under the title "Mafia for Organs", Turkish Cypriot daily Star Kibris newspaper (12.04.13) reports that days have remained for the approval of the "transplantation of organs law" by the so-called assembly of the breakaway regime in the occupied area of the Republic of Cyprus. According to the paper, this development creates a hope for sick people who are forced to travel abroad for transplantation of organs, but at the same time some people believe that this "law" is paving the way for illegal transplantations of organs and "mafia for organs".

    In statements to the paper, surgeon Dr. Mustafa Hami recalled that the occupied part of Cyprus is a "country far away from the international law and could not be controlled" and expressed the view that after the approval of the "law" by the "assembly", illegal transplantations of organs will take place.

    Dr Hami said that all the illegal practices in Turkey are implemented in the occupied area of Cyprus as well and added: "Trade of women, human trafficking exists in this country. Why it is not possible for a mafia for organs to be created?"

    Noting that illegal practices are implemented, Dr Hami said that some persons visit the occupied area of Cyprus during the weekend, undergo operations and return to their countries. He added that persons who are victimized in these secret operations return afterwards and try looking for their rights.

    He noted that a doctor of Turkish origin, who had become famous in America in the field of heart transplant, had been prohibited to exercise his profession because of violating some principles. This person, who could find a job nowhere in the world, has come to the occupied area of Cyprus and started working in a private hospital, said Dr. Hami.

    (I/Ts.)

    [08] Foreigners consider to transfer money to the occupied part of Cyprus and purchase property; Columnist: the regime turned blind eye when foreigners who had purchased property were cheated

    Writing in his daily column in Turkish Cypriot daily Afrika newspaper (12.04.13), Sener Levent reports that Russians, who have money in the banks in the government-controlled area of the Republic of Cyprus, are seriously considering of transferring their money to banks in the occupied area of the island. Citing information he obtained from Russian journalists, visiting the occupied area of Cyprus, Levent writes that there are also some Russians who plan on investing on immovable property in the occupied part of Cyprus.

    Noting that the Russian journalists had conducted a research in the streets asking Turkish Cypriot "citizens" what they though on this issue, Levent reports that one "citizen" said: "let them come, we will milk them better"!

    Levent recalls that the "officials" of the breakaway regime have a different opinion on this issue saying that their banks are safe and that the Russians and the Britons should consider that their money would be safe there.

    Meanwhile, writing in his daily column in Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris newspaper (12.04.13), Resat Akar reports that the Turkish Cypriots need plans and projects for the future in order for not returning to the "dark days of the past". Recalling how they looted the occupied Greek Cypriot properties since 1974 and how they cheated foreigners, who had purchased occupied properties, Akar writes, inter alia, the following:

    "?As of July 1974, the period of the big looting started. There is no worse thing than people in an uncontrolled country living with plunder. Some people should have stopped this madness. But they did not. The plundering has been turned into a part of politics. Plots of land or houses have been distributed to voters. One day the possibilities in hand were exhausted.

    After the rejection of the Annan Plan by the Greek Cypriots, the second big looting period started. Blacksmiths or peddlers became building contractors within few months. Some established jobs without having a permit and without being registered.

    We started selling a lot of houses to Britons, who were coming to our country as tourists and loved our sunny weather. If the state defended this event and took the constructions sector under control, such an event would have been a great opportunity not only from an economic point of view, but also for the recognition of the TRNC and the increase of the foreign support. However, this did not happen. We turned a blind eye when innocent people were cheated. A significant part of those who paid their money and purchased residence was not able to either get a title deed or be rescued from the construction problems. The municipalities, the housing and environment ministries could not control the 'illegal constructions' during the term of duty of all the governments. Or they could not take deterrent measures even though they controlled it. Even though big swindles such as the Garry Robb, Kulaksiz and Tutuska cases have been experienced, no proper questioning was conducted. While those who were powerful won, the undefended people were left out in the open. That is, it is an unjust system?"

    Akar goes on and writes that no one was punished for these scandals and notes that they could not continue their way with such a system, or ask support for the "TRNC" in case no solution to the Cyprus problem is reached.

    (I/Ts.)

    [09] Elcil described the lifting of free health services to the Turkish Cypriots by the Republic of Cyprus as a racist discrimination

    Under the title: "Elcil got angry with the Greek Cypriots", Turkish Cypriot daily Haberdar (12.04.13) reports that the general secretary of KTOS trade union, Sener Elcil issuing a written statement yesterday, opposed to the legal regulation which envisages that Turkish Cypriots will not be provided free health services from the Republic of Cyprus anymore and said that this is a racist discrimination against the Turkish Cypriots.

    Elcil stated that the Greek Cypriot authorities providing as an excuse the economic crisis in "south Cyprus have launched an initiative to lift the health services provided to the Turkish Cypriots, forgetting that the Turkish Cypriots are also citizens of the Republic of Cyprus. Elcil said that this kind of approaches aimed to the division of the island and are separatist, as he described them.

    Elcil went on and said that this approach aims to the division of the island and added that it is an approach with political dimensions. Elci criticized also the so-called minister of health, Ertugrul Hasipoglu for his latest statements.

    (AK)

    [10] Kucuk: "The allegations for cabinet reshuffle are groundless"

    Under the above title, Turkish Cypriot daily Haberdar (12.04.13) reports that the so-called prime minister Irsen Kucuk has stated yesterday that the news published yesterday in the press about a "cabinet reshuffle" in the occupied area of Cyprus, do not reflect the reality.

    Issuing a written statement on the issue, Kucuk said that he is totally happy with the member of the "cabinet", adding that that they will continue their works and their projects with the current "cabinet" until the "general elections" in 2014.

    (AK)

    [11] Tumerkan is the new director of "BRT"

    According to illegal Bayrak television (11.04.13), Mete Tumerkan, who has worked in a variety of positions at the illegal BRTK since 1991, will now serve as its director.

    The so-called council of ministers appointed Mete Tumerkan as the new director of the illegal Bayrak Radio Television Corporation after the position became vacant after his predecessor Huseyin Cobanoglu retired last month.

    Tumerkan began working at the "BRT" in 1991 and served as an assistant to the "BRT board of directors" and as a coordinator between 2001 and 2008.

    He received numerous "Journalist of Year" awards also served as the head of the Turkish Cypriot Journalists Society.

    Alongside this, Tumerkan is a newspaper columnist, programmer and educator.

    [12] Columnist in Turkish Cypriot daily speaks about buying off votes during the illegal by-elections which took place at the occupied Lefkosia "municipality"

    In a commentary entitled: "Vote, vote, vote", Gurdal Hudaoglu, columnist in Turkish Cypriot daily Haberdar (12.04.13) reports on the "by-elections" which took place at the occupied Lefkosia "municipality" and writes that a night before the "elections" a strange operation for vote bargaining-buying off votes, took place within the walls city of occupied Lefkosia and as it was said some people had also been threatened at gunpoint.

    Hudaoglu refers to a statement made two days ago by the chairman of the Association of settlers to the "TRNC" as the occupation regime is called, from Alexandretta who has stated on camera while participating to a televised program the following: "Two parties offered to me, as the chairman of the association, money, in exchange to direct votes within the walls city". Hudaoglu adds that the chairman of the above "association" said that he has evidence and documents which are considered enough to prove this, adding that he however did not mentioned the names of the two parties. He however, said, that it was one left-wing and one right-wing party, writes Hudaoglu.

    Hudaoglu goes on and writes that normally after the above allegations, the "country" had to take action; however, he points out that nobody reacted and nobody launched investigations towards the above allegations (...).

    AK

    [13] Turkey's 4th judicial package passes into law with critical last-minute amendment

    Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (online, 11.04.13) reports that those charged with committing propaganda crimes will not be additionally charged with being a member of a terror organization, according to the 4th judicial package which was passed into law April 11.

    Turkey's much-debated fourth judicial package was passed into law by Parliament April 11, with the introduction of a last-minute amendment to remove extra punishment for those convicted of "terror propaganda".

    The package is intended to eliminate rulings against Turkey in the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) for human rights violations, especially regarding the situation of convicts charged with membership in a terrorist organization.

    The legal reform package was widely debated in Parliament and sparked controversy when it arrived in Parliament on March 7, as it did not meet the high expectations that had built up over time in its original state.

    However, according to an amendment introduced to the fourth judicial package, no punishment will be inflicted for "being a member of a terrorist organization," once the defendant is charged for committing propaganda crimes.

    Charges of affiliation with a terrorist organization will no longer be held once the crimes of publishing and distributing leaflets and statements by terrorist organizations, making the propaganda of a terrorist organization and participating in illegal meetings and protest marches have been penalized.

    The amendment to the Bill on Amending Some Laws within the Context of Human Rights and Freedom of Expression, known as the fourth judicial package, was introduced by the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) late on April 10 during debates on the package at Parliament's General Assembly.

    Yet, the amendment has reservations for cases where the crime qualifies as involving coercion and violence, such as possessing explosives, damaging property, injuring intentionally, resisting with the purpose of avoiding duty and jeopardizing general safety. When those crimes are involved, the person can still be charged for being a member of a terrorist organization.

    With another amendment introduced yesterday, the article on those who committed a crime in the name of a crime gang was limited to armed gangs.

    The amendments pave the way for the dropping of charges against suspects accused of being members of unarmed criminal gangs, including Fenerbahce Chairman Aziz Yildirim, who is charged with rigging football matches, and municipal employees in Izmir and Eskisehir accused of embezzlement.

    The fourth judicial reform package aims to eliminate rulings against Turkey at the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR).

    Justice Minister Sadullah Ergin previously said the fourth judicial package was not a result of "bargaining" in the ongoing talks to solve the Kurdish issues, adding that preliminary studies for the package began in November 2011 when the talks had not yet been launched. TURKISH AFFAIRS SECTION

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

    /EI


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