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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Cypriot and Turkish Media Review, 14-05-28

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. 97/14 28.05.14

[A] TURKISH CYPRIOT / TURKISH PRESS

  • [01] Eroglu describes Biden's visit to the occupied area of Cyprus as "extremely important"
  • [02] Ozersay met with Pierre Lieve of the French Foreign Ministry
  • [03] Columnist: We are ashamed of Varosha being decayed
  • [04] Talat, Denktas and Ozyigit evaluate the EP elections
  • [05] Columnists assess the statements by the Turkish Cypriot political parties on the EP elections
  • [06] Proposals on "constitutional amendments" on hold due to lack of quorum
  • [07] Toros: "Direct phone calls across the divide will be possible at last"
  • [08] Davutoglu and Lavrov agreed that improving bilateral relations is key to regional stability
  • [09] Israel appeals to Interpol not to implement Turkish court's ruling

  • [A] TURKISH CYPRIOT / TURKISH PRESS

    [01] Eroglu describes Biden's visit to the occupied area of Cyprus as "extremely important"

    Illegal Bayrak television (28.05.14, online) broadcast that the Turkish Cypriot leader, Dervis Eroglu has described as "extremely important" US Vice President, Joe Biden's visit to the occupied area of Cyprus and his so-called presidency office. In statements yesterday to Bayrak, Eroglu argued: "This is not an incident to be underestimated. The statement he made when he landed at Larnaka Airport should not surprise anyone because he came as guest of the South Cyprus Greek Administration and in any case there is absolutely no one in the world who does not know that he recognizes the South Cyprus Greek Administration. While this is the reality, the fact that he came to the TRNC and visited us at the presidency is a historic event, in my view".

    Eroglu claimed that one should sit at the table with both leaders in order to be able to find out the content of the Cyprus problem and added that Biden did just that. "During the negotiations we held with Biden we discussed confidence building measures, but the issue of Varosha was not raised", he said adding that the issue of the occupied fenced off city of Varosha was raised by President Anastasiades during the dinner they had at the buffer zone and the Turkish side put "openly and clearly" onto the table its views on this issue.

    Eroglu said that they agreed on four issues during that dinner and added: "The first was the meeting of the leaders once every 15 days, the second was to exert efforts for gathering more information regarding the missing persons, the third was the technical committees. We said that we have already technical committees and they have been named. We are ready in case the Greek Cypriot side completes the naming".

    Eroglu said that Biden wrote down the agreed issues and alleged that President Anastasiades raised an objection and did not want the agreements to be announced to the press. Eroglu noted that he had expressed the view that the statement should be made and Biden "approved" the necessity of making this statement.

    Responding to the allegations that Biden had not shaken his hand, Eroglu said that "we shook hands as soon as Mr Biden came out of the car".

    (I/Ts.)

    [02] Ozersay met with Pierre Lieve of the French Foreign Ministry

    According to Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris Postasi Daily News (online, 27.05.14),

    Turkish Cypriot negotiator Kudret Ozersay who is in France as an official guest of the French Foreign Ministry, met with Chief of EU Affairs Department at the French Foreign Ministry Pierre Lievy.

    The paper reported that Ozersay is officially invited by the French Foreign Ministry making his visit the first one for Turkish Cypriots to be represented at that level in France.

    [03] Columnist: We are ashamed of Varosha being decayed

    Under the title "The buildings will one by one be falling over our head", Turkish Cypriot columnist Mert Ozdag assesses in Turkish Cypriot daily Yeni Duzen newspaper (28.05.14) the issue of confidence building measures and the occupied fenced off city of Varosha. He reports that "new dynamics" have been created from the point of view of the Turkish Cypriot side by putting onto the table a confidence building measures package in parallel to the on-going negotiations for finding a comprehensive solution. He writes that it seems that the issue, which had come onto the agenda prior to US Vice President, Joe Biden's visit to Cyprus, "will be developed and debated within the forthcoming period". He goes on and reports, inter alia, the following:

    "?For many years, the Turkish side has not been seeing Varosha as a confidence building measure. It preferred to comment on it under the chapter of the comprehensive solution. In this case, a large city we had in our hands decayed, melted. That is, in time our position at the table decayed like the buildings of Varosha. Now we are hesitating, we are ashamed. We are ashamed of this state of decay. The result of this shame is president Eroglu's view that 'there should be no Greek Cypriot in the team which will enter Varosha for preparing a feasibility study'. We are ashamed! We are ashamed because we gave such a large city to the snakes and the rats for many years?And we are ashamed because we could gain absolutely nothing by keeping such a beauty hostage ?

    Now, with the recent visit of the Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu and the Biden visit, we woke up for a new process. Varosha and Famagusta are now an issue of bargaining. This is the reality! Davutoglu's statement that 'there should be something in return' and the initiatives during Biden's visit showed us that Varosha is at the table as a confidence building measure before even the comprehensive solution.

    And during a TV program in which he had participated the day before yesterday, the second president Mehmet Ali Talat said that he is positive on this issue. Asked whether we should make Varosha an issue of bargaining, he replied: 'We are discussing it any way?When I was in office I had even proposed to give Varosha, but the other side did not accept it. I had proposed to give Varosha in return for the lifting of the isolations?'

    ?If this opportunity is not well used by our leadership and the negotiating process, which was revived with the natural gas process, fails, the decayed buildings of Varosha will start falling over our heads one by one?"

    (I/Ts.)

    [04] Talat, Denktas and Ozyigit evaluate the EP elections

    Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris Postasi Daily News (online, 28.05.14) reports that former Turkish Cypriot leader Mehmet Ali Talat, evaluating the European Parliamentary (EP) elections during a TV show, said: "Political romance is over and the truth is unveiled".

    Noting that the Turkish Cypriots didn't take part in the organization of the elections, Talat said that the Turkish Cypriots, who participated in the elections, either as a candidate or to vote, did this to contribute to peace, or to claim Turkish Cypriots' rights and send them to the EP.

    Talat did not mention his earlier comment in which he allegedly blamed Turkish Cypriot candidates for being "spineless". Talat's words, unknown where he said them, created a storm in social media and soon after Cenk Mutluyakali (Editor in Chief of the Turkish Cypriot daily Yeni Duzen) mentioned this in his column without naming Talat, but saying "I haven't seen any spinelessness in anyone that day" in defence of the Turkish Cypriots who participated in the elections.

    Talat continued his evaluation of the elections by underlying the ethnic division in Cyprus. According to Talat, there are two different ethnic communities on this island and the Cyprus problem has its roots in ethnic division. "Therefore, you didn't need to be an oracle to know that no Turkish Cypriot would get elected to the EP"

    "As we didn't go after this `dream which is not good for your mental health' (A Turkish proverb to define unattainable goals) we insisted on political equality" added Talat.

    Moreover, Turkish Cypriot daily Star Kibris (28.05.14) reports that the leader of the Democrat Party Serdar Denktas, evaluating domestic policies as well as the EP elections during a programme at ADA TV, said that the incidents that happened during the EP elections were ridiculed. He added that their proposal was to hold the same day their own elections and to elect their own EP Deputies. He went on: "Maybe they would not have been accepted, but we would have continued our pressure on the name of the people". He claimed that what has happened in the elections it is the biggest insult to them.

    On the same issue, Kibris Postasi (28.05.14) the leader of the Social Democracy Party (TDP) Cemal Ozyigit, evaluating also the EP elections during a radio programme on "BRT", said that he was really sad, and adding "I really, sincerely, didn't want to turn out to be right about my predictions before the elections. Unfortunately our predictions became reality, our fears proved to be right. I wish I was wrong."

    Noting that they discussed a lot before the elections with Deniz Birinci, who resigned from her Foreign Relations Secretary position from TDP for ethical reasons and joined the elections, Ozyigit said: "We talked about all these possible outcomes, but she was assertive and willing; I wish the result was different".

    He also said: "From the first day, we said, even in the colonial times, Turkish Cypriots elected their own representatives. After 1960, we kept electing our own representatives as it is a constitutional right defined in the 1960 constitution.

    In this last round we agreed that we can have Turkish Cypriot candidates or they can vote as part of their democratic rights, but it could only stay at the personal level. Our interest as a community was not served. We never oppose anyone running in the elections but just warned them that 'this might serve a different purpose than your real aim'.

    We told this to the officials in Brussels that it's EU's job to make sure two Turkish Cypriots are elected to the parliament. However we were told to go and tell this to Kassoulides. We have nothing to discuss with the Greek Cypriot Foreign Minister (translator's note: as he refers to the Cyprus Foreign Minister), it should have been the EU sorting things out."

    [05] Columnists assess the statements by the Turkish Cypriot political parties on the EP elections

    Under the title "They have the TRNC", Turkish Cypriot columnist Ali Osman assesses in Turkish Cypriot daily Afrika newspaper (28.05.14) the statements made by Turkish Cypriot politicians on the participation of the Turkish Cypriots in the European Parliament (EP) elections held on Sunday.

    Noting that the Turkish Cypriot leader Eroglu, the former Turkish Cypriot leader Talat and the self-styled prime minister of the breakaway regime, Ozkan Yorgancioglu started making statements saying essentially the same thing, Osman writes, inter alia, the following:

    "?The choir is magnificent. Eroglu [said]: 'The elections are elections of the south'. The reaction from Talat and Yorgancioglu are of the same kind! They had stated from before that in case one of the Turkish Cypriots was elected in these elections, this person would not be representing the Turkish Cypriots. However, if this right had been recognized to those who are holders of the TRNC identity card, they would have respected it.

    Turkey is continuously preparing plans for annihilating the Turkish Cypriots. Everyone who is a Turkish Cypriot can understand this. I think that they are clever enough to make this assessment... More correctly, is it not announced that 95 thousand Turkish Cypriots hold in their pockets identity cards of the Republic of Cyprus? Then why should these elections not interest the Turkish Cypriots? Is it because the TRNC exists? Let them return the identity cards of the Republic of Cyprus and let them live with the TRNC identity cards! No one will have anything to say about this? If we explain it a little bit more, the British identity cards are EU citizens' identity cards and belong to those who live within Britain's geographical area. The same think is valid for Cyprus. Even though the EU laws are not valid in the north because this place is under Turkish occupation, this is an EU territory. The fact that the elections were held in the other half of the island is due to the abnormal situation in the north. It is tragicomic to say that 'I will elect two parliamentarians among the TRNC citizens in the north and I am in this job if this is accepted'?"

    Meanwhile, writing also in Afrika, Mehmet Levent reports that even if half of the 58.637 registered Turkish Cypriot voters went to the ballot and used their right to vote, the Turkish Cypriots would have definitely taken one of the two seats in the EP, which they allege belongs to them. He noted that they lost this opportunity and "playthings of the official policies imposed on us by Ankara through its puppets here and the politicians".

    Alleging that the Greek Cypriots usurped the right to vote of 30 thousand Turkish Cypriots in order not to let the Turkish Cypriots take two seat in the EP, Levent admits the following: "However, we should not forget that they gave the right to vote to 58,637 Turkish Cypriots and they published it in the voters' lists which they prepared".

    Noting that only 1869 Turkish Cypriots went to vote, Levent writes that "from now on we have no right to make a fuss saying 'they usurped the two seats of ours at the EP'".

    (I/Ts.)

    [06] Proposals on "constitutional amendments" on hold due to lack of quorum

    According to Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris Postasi Daily News (online, 27.05.14), the self-styled assembly of the breakaway regime in the occupied area of the Republic of Cyprus was due to convene for an extraordinary session on Tuesday in order to discuss proposals on "constitutional amendments". However due to a lack of quorum the "assembly" is postponed to Thursday.

    The amendments which were going to be discussed foresee changes to 19 "bylaws" and 4 more "additional bylaws" which were approved by the "committee working on the amendments" on May 24th.

    The "bylaws are on fundamental rights, increasing the reliability of parliament and strengthening control and accountability mechanisms".

    "Constitutional amendments" require 34 "deputy" votes to pass. If the amendment passes from the "assembly", the breakaway regime aims to hold a referendum during the upcoming local elections.

    [07] Toros: "Direct phone calls across the divide will be possible at last"

    According to Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris Postasi Daily News (online, 27.05.14), the Chairman of the Cyprus Turkish Chamber of Commerce Fikri Toros, speaking to Al Jazeera Turkish, said that "direct calls will be possible across the divide in Cyprus with mobile phones and the substructure work is expected to be completed in May". He added that all the barriers in front of direct phone calls between the occupied area and the government controlled area of the Republic of Cyprus will be lifted very soon.

    Toros noted that both Turkish Cypriot and Greek Cypriot Chambers of Commerce have been jointly putting an effort for making direct calls through mobile phones possible.

    Speaking on the background of the latest development, Toros said "Before the last round of talks started we discussed about the issue with the Chairman of the Greek Cypriot Chamber of Commerce in Malta in 2013. In that period we couldn't make any progress. However, we haven't given up and we pushed for it."

    According to Toros most of the challenges were technical issues about where to install the base stations and the arrangement of tariffs.

    Toros underlined that this project has been approved by both leaders.

    [08] Davutoglu and Lavrov agreed that improving bilateral relations is key to regional stability

    According to Turkish daily Sabah (online, 27.05.14), Turkish Foreign Minister Davutoglu met with his Russian counterpart, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, to exchange views on the recent developments in Ukraine and Syria as well as the Iranian nuclear program along with bilateral relations.

    In a joint press conference, Davutoglu said that bilateral relations have been gradually improving after holding meetings on joint strategic planning groups despite a divergence over the regional and international developments.

    According to Ankara Anatolia news agency reports, Davutoglu underscored the importance of their evaluation on significant regional issues, adding that "We would be happy to focus on actual problems in the Middle East, North Africa, and the Black Sea region. Ukraine is our neighbour and we would also point to the ongoing problems in Ukraine."

    Lavrov also pointed out that the cooperation council, a key aspect in improving the bilateral relations, would provide a great opportunity for future relations between the two countries.

    Lavrov continued saying that the current regional issue, the mutual cooperation in Ukraine, Black Sea and North Caucasus were the major topics in the discussions.

    Regarding both leaders' opposing stance over the regional developments, it is important to note that enhancing the current bilateral relations increases the possibility of achieving a common ground and prevents the political differences from deteriorating.

    In addition, the Syrian crisis demanded considerable attention from both parties during yesterday's meeting. Experts warn that as the two countries have adopted opposing sides on the Syrian crisis, how their dispute over the Syrian crisis would impact the two countries' relation is of significant importance. Regarding Syrian war crimes, Davutoglu pointed out the significant role Russia should play in achieving regional stability in the Middle East in order to put an end to ongoing crimes against humanity. Strengthening bilateral ties are crucial for both parties as the two countries have become strategic partners planning to maintain regional stability.

    [09] Israel appeals to Interpol not to implement Turkish court's ruling

    Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (online, 27.05.14) reports that Israel has appealed to Interpol not to honour a ruling from a Turkish court that issued arrest warrants on May 26 for four former Israeli military commanders on trial in absentia over the 2010 killing of nine Turks on the Gaza-bound Mavi Marmara.

    In its appeal to Interpol, Israel suggested that the Turkish court's ruling was "tainted by political motives" and that Interpol should accordingly not carry it out, leading English-language Israeli daily The Jerusalem Post reported yesterday.

    In its report, citing Hebrew-language daily newspaper Ma'ariv, The Jerusalem Post cited Interpol statutes saying the force does not intervene in proceedings related to political or military affairs. According to The Jerusalem Post, "it is more than likely that they will not put out international arrest warrants for the four officers."

    But in Ankara, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan argued that the ruling would not have an impact on the ongoing normalization process between his country and Israel.

    Erdogan, speaking to reporters on May 27, recalled that the normalization process was an initiative by the executive body. The court cases against Israeli officials, however, were initiated by families of victims or of those who were wounded in the attack, meaning they should be assessed as a separate process, he said. TURKISH AFFAIRS SECTION

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


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