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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Cypriot and Turkish Media Review, 15-12-09

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. 234/15 09.12.2015

[A] TURKISH CYPRIOT / TURKISH PRESS

  • [01] Akinci: "It is out of question a situation where the original owner will have the first say"
  • [02] Bilgic commented on the Cyprus talks
  • [03] Colak addressed the 6th Bosphorus Summit in Istanbul
  • [04] Davutoglu: Our Turkish Cypriot brothers are always in our heart
  • [05] Statements by Turkish Cypriot politicians on the Cyprus problem
  • [06] United Cyprus Party and Social Democrat Party's position on Turkey's guarantees
  • [07] Applications to the "Compensation Property Committee" reduced over the last five years
  • [08] Turkish Parliament Speaker is paying an illegal visit in the occupied area of Cyprus
  • [09] General strike and protest by the "Trade Union Platform" 10 The Green Crescent Association of the breakaway regime participated in UNGASS 2016
  • [11] EP Turkey Rapporteur: Ankara did its part in tackling the refugee problem
  • [12] Cavusoglu and Kerry discussed the Iraqi issue
  • [13] Demirtas blasts EU and US for relations with Turkish government
  • [14] Turkey not planning to revise Montreux Convention on Bosphorus rights

  • [A] TURKISH CYPRIOT / TURKISH PRESS

    [01] Akinci: "It is out of question a situation where the original owner will have the first say"

    Turkish Cypriot daily Demokrat Bakis (09.12.15) with the above title reports that Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci, in a meeting with a delegation of business from Transnistria, an area between Moldova and Russia which is not internationally recognized, referring to reports in the newspapers regarding the property issue, said: "Our people should not be confused? They should pay attention to what we say as we are the ones at the negotiating table".

    With reference to other news in another Turkish Cypriot newspaper about affected properties implying that "the first say on property will belong to the original owner", Akinci said: "The right to apply first is something else and the right to decide first is something else. I would like to underline this. Being a right holder will be pursuant to criteria which are not yet agreed and still under development. Therefore, such a situation, where the original owner will have the first say, is certainly out of question".

    Akinci argued that "it is natural for pre-1974 land owners to apply for and to specify their demands for their affected properties". He explained that their prediction is that a great majority of those people is expected to ask for compensation. "However, when a pre-1974 owner asks for their property back, their property will not be automatically returned to them. This is not the case. This issue will be entirely resolved according to the criteria", he added.

    Claiming that under a federal structure, the majority in the ownership of properties in the Turkish Cypriot constituent state must belong to the Turkish Cypriots as required by the UN parameters and the established principle of bi-zonality since 1990s, Akinci said that "in the north, Turkish Cypriots shall maintain the majority both in terms of population and ownership, as this is the basis for bi-zonality and a UN parameter since the beginning of 1990s".

    Akinci noted that regarding the 22 determined categories of affected properties, they are in consensus with the Greek Cypriot side and underlined that works are still continuing on the criteria and that there is not yet a clear table.

    Noting that he does not want to say that this is the last opportunity for a Cyprus settlement, Akinci said that he believes, however, that this will be the last trying for this generation for a solution based on a federal structure. He desires that a new referendum to be placed in spring and both sides will vote for yes. Akinci said that in case that a solution is not found, then the new generation of Turkish and Greek Cypriots may want their people to live in separate countries.

    Commenting on the discovery of natural gas resources in Cyprus' EEZ, Akinci reiterated that the Turkish Cypriots have rights on these resources and in order to be able to benefit from these sources, the Cyprus problem should be solved.

    (DPs)

    [02] Bilgic commented on the Cyprus talks

    Illegal Bayrak television (online, 09.12.15) broadcast that according to the 1960 Treaty of Guarantees and Alliance no country other than a guarantor power can station troops in Cyprus, the Turkish Foreign Ministry Spokesman Tanju Bilgic told a press conference yesterday.

    Asked to comment on a report that an agreement has been reached by the two sides in Cyprus regarding citizenship, the Turkish Foreign Ministry Spokesman said that Turkey is contributing to the ongoing negotiations process as a guarantor state and that its priority is for a settlement to be reached on the island as soon as possible.

    Reminding that intensified talks are continuing on the substantive issues but that he has no information regarding any agreement reached on the issue of citizenship, Bilgic said: "The negotiations process is a very sensitive process and these are manipulative reports. We need to avoid paying attention to such false press reports so that the process cannot be sabotaged".

    Also commenting on reports that talks were being held between Russia and the Greek Cypriot Administration (editor's note: as he refers to the Republic of Cyprus) to grant the Russians a military facility on the island, Bilgic said that according to the 1960 Treaty of Guarantees and Alliance no country other than a guarantor power can station troops in Cyprus.

    "The Greek Cypriot Administration has signed a number of military agreements with several countries which are not guarantor powers. Our position on the matter is well known not only by the Greek Cypriot Administration and those countries but by Russia as well", he said.

    Asked whether Turkey is working on setting up a joint fund to finance property cases in Cyprus, Bilgic said that the property issue is one of the important problems in the negotiations process but that there is no such effort at this current time.

    Meanwhile, the UN Secretary General's Special Adviser Espen Barth Eide who is in Ankara met with the Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu. The two met at the Cankaya Palace for almost an hour and half.

    The UN Special Adviser in a tweet after the meeting said that he had held a rich substantive meeting with the Turkish Prime Minister during which they discussed the region and security.

    [03] Colak addressed the 6th Bosphorus Summit in Istanbul

    According to illegal Bayrak television (online, 09.12.15), self-styled foreign minister Emine Colak, who attended the 6th Bosphorus Summit in Istanbul, has drawn attention to the challenges faced by the "TRNC" (editor's note: the breakaway regime in the occupied area of the Republic of Cyprus) in achieving sustainable development goals.

    Delivering a speech at the summit held under the main theme of "Eradicating Poverty and Growing Prosperity at the Grassroots Level", Colak argued that under the current conditions it is not easy to be fully engaged in achieving the sustainable development goals given that the Turkish Cypriots are not part of the international community and are thus experiencing various economic and social difficulties.

    "In my country, trying to achieve development, whether in the field of economy or human rights or environment, is a huge challenge if you are denied any status within the international community and therefore deprived of the kind of assistance, monitoring or incentives that is shared in global cooperation for such aims", she said.

    Pointing out that Cyprus is in the midst of an extremely intense negotiation process aimed at trying to resolve the long standing dispute on the island, Colak said that the Turkish Cypriot side is 'cautiously optimistic'.

    Explaining that the two leaders on the island and their respective teams are negotiating on the basis of agreed parameters to create a bi-communal, bi-zonal federal Cyprus, Colak said that the leaders met frequently for result oriented talks supported by confidence building measures to build trust between the parties and create a climate of cooperation. "That is to create a climate that foresees the potentials of a unified future ? rather than the burden of a painful past which created the division", she added.

    Colak, however, added that despite the disadvantages of being left out of the international community, the "TRNC" is fortunate not to have issues of severe poverty or hunger. She further claimed: "We have an established state, education and health system, however imperfect. We have succeeded in establishing a rule of law based on constitutional principles and are trying to prepare for EU membership and the reforms required creating EU mechanisms and standards".

    Meanwhile, Colak will be moving onto Brussels to attend an event marking the 10th anniversary of the Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Commerce's Office in Brussels.

    [04] Davutoglu: Our Turkish Cypriot brothers are always in our heart

    Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris newspaper (09.12.15) reports that the Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu speaking at the Parliamentary Group of the Justice and Development Party (AKP), referred to the Turkish Cypriots and stated: "Our Turkish Cypriot brothers are by all means always in our heart and will remain there forever".

    He also stated that as soon as the new Turkish government received a vote of confidence he paid his first official visit to the "little country" as he called the breakaway regime, adding that he brings his regards from the "TRNC" to Turkey. He also said that he paid his second visit to Azerbaijan adding that this is a beautiful tradition that he follows.

    (CS)

    [05] Statements by Turkish Cypriot politicians on the Cyprus problem

    Turkish Cypriot daily Vatan newspaper (09.12.15) reports that during the discussion yesterday in the "assembly" for the "TRNC's 2016 budget", several "deputies" referred in their speeches to the Cyprus problem and evaluated the latest developments.

    In his speech, Serdar Denktas, chairman of the Democratic Party (DP) referred to the statements made recently by Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci as regards the issue of guarantees and said that the Turkish Cypriots have seen and experienced their rights deriving from the Treaty of Guarantees.

    Stressing the need for the "guarantees" not to be diluted, Denktas said that Turkey should take this issue into account very well and added that in case Turkey withdraws from Cyprus it will not have any advantage in the Mediterranean.

    Evaluating the developments that might occur after a referendum and a possible solution on the Cyprus problem, Denktas said that the solution to be found should not be a solution which would create new problems.

    Referring to the issue of the "administration and power sharing", Denktas said that they want equality and added that they would not accept any other regulation towards this issue rather than the rotating presidency, which envisages for a Turkish Cypriot to be a President for 1 year and a Greek Cypriot to be a President for the other year. He added that similarly they want equality and equal power sharing at the High Court, the Central Bank e.t.c.

    Stressing the need to defend all the rights of the Turkish Cypriots at the negotiating table, Denktas said that the issue of the "special areas" is extremely dangerous and called for this issue to be removed from the plans.

    Also speaking, Huseyin Ozgurgun, chairman of the National Unity Party (UBP) accused Akinci for not informing the Turkish Cypriot political parties towards the developments at the negotiation talks and stressed the need for establishing a bridge of dialogue.

    Referring to the progress of the negotiations, he stressed the need for the territory and property issue which were not yet discussed at the talks, to be discussed together.

    "The territory and the property issues are related with the issue of bi-zonality", Ozgurgun said and added that they should not be diluted.

    Concerning the issue of the "administration and power sharing", Ozgurgun stressed the need not to make concessions towards their equality and added that the essence of the Cyprus problem is not the property issue but the "administration and power sharing" issue.

    Ozgurgun concluded and stated that in order for the solution to be viable, a clear structure should be formed, otherwise, problems will arise again.

    Moreover, Tufan Erhurman, "deputy" with the Republican Turkish Party-United Forces (CTP-BG) in the occupied part of Lefkosia, referred, inter alia, to the Cyprus problem and said that yet no agreement has been reached on all issues at the negotiation table and thus it is not right to behave as if all issues were agreed and are against the Turkish Cypriots.

    Stating that the recent reports published in the press concerning the negotiation process constitute proposals of the Greek Cypriot side, Erhurman said that both sides submitted proposals at the table and added that those proposals are not final but are positions for bargaining and discussion.

    Pointing out that the CTP does not support the position that the "the first right of say belongs to the former owner of a property", Erhurman stressed the importance for a balance to be established between the former owner and the user of a property.

    Concerning the issue of guarantees, Erhurman said that this issue is a sensitive one and added that it will be discussed by the guarantor countries.

    Erhurman concluded saying that the CTP supports totally all the efforts exerted towards reaching to a solution on the Cyprus problem and wished Akinci every success.

    (AK)

    [06] United Cyprus Party and Social Democrat Party's position on Turkey's guarantees

    Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris newspaper (09.12.15) reports that the chairman of the United Cyprus Party (BKP) Izzet Izcan stated that safety is very important for the Turkish Cypriots and in case of a solution, this issue must be definitely taken into consideration. However, he said, the current system of guarantees is protecting neither the Turkish Cypriots nor the whole of Cyprus.

    Izcan who issued a written statement noted that a Federal Cyprus must be free and independent and added that in the framework of the new constitution of the Federal state efforts must be exerted so that the foundation of trust to be established between the two communities of the island.

    In addition, the paper reports that the Social Democrat Party (SDP) also issued a written statement noting that while it supports a permanent and just solution in Cyprus, is against the lifting of Turkish guarantees from the island.

    (CS)

    [07] Applications to the "Compensation Property Committee" reduced over the last five years

    Turkish Cypriot daily Havadis newspaper (09.12.15) reports that applications to the "Compensation Property Committee" of the breakaway regime by the Greek Cypriots have reduced over the last five years.

    In 2013, 1,337 applications were made while in 2014 the applications were reduced to 375. Fewer applications were made in 2015 since only 161 persons applied to the "Committee" during the last 11 months. In addition the "Committee" ruled for 189 applications in 2013, 150 applications in 2014 and 108 applications for 2015.

    The number of the application per year is as follows:

    Year Applications filed Applications finalized

    2006 100 13

    2007 197 26

    2008 76 30

    2009 70 68

    2010 397 64

    2011 1926 87

    2012 1601 132

    2013 1337 189

    2014 158 150

    2015 161 108

    Total 6240 876

    According the paper, the "Committee" has paid one billion Turkish Lira ( 213 million Sterling Lira) to Greek Cypriots who applied to the "Committee" since 2006, the year that it has started operated, until today. The highest amount (49,280, 000 Turkish Lira) was paid in 2014.

    The amount of Compensations paid from 2006-2015 is as follows:

    Year Amount

    2006 2,221,000

    2007 3,147,000

    2008 1,646,000

    2009 31,047,000

    2010 12,724,900

    2011 12,980,440

    2012 33,952,775

    2013 46,277,406

    2014 49,280,612

    2015 19,916,160

    Total 213,193,883

    (CS)

    [08] Turkish Parliament Speaker is paying an illegal visit in the occupied area of Cyprus

    According to illegal Bayrak television (online, 09.12.15), the newly elected Speaker of the Turkish Grand National Assembly Ismail Kahraman is illegaly in the occupied area of the Republic Cyprus for his first "official visit abroad" since taking office.

    Kahraman is being accompanied by the Turkish Deputy Prime Minister in Charge of Cyprus Affairs Tugrul Turkes.

    The two top Turkish officials embarked on their contacts with visits to the tombs of the late Turkish Cypriot leaders Dr Fazil Kucuk, Rauf Denktas and the Bogaz Martyrs cemetery. Kahraman and his accompanying delegation then visited the headquarters of the Turkish occupation forces in Cyprus where he met with Lieutenant General Serdar Savas.

    Following this visit, Kahraman met with the Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci and the self-styled assembly speaker of the breakaway regime Sibel Siber before attending a lunch hosted in his honour by the "TRNC parliamentary speaker".

    In the afternoon he will be meeting with self-styled prime minister Omer Kalyoncu. Later in the evening he will be touring historical and cultural sites in the occupied part of Lefkosia before his departure to Turkey.

    [09] General strike and protest by the "Trade Union Platform"

    Turkish Cypriot daily Halkin Sesi newspaper (09.12.15) reports that the "Trade Union Platform", composed by several trade unions in the occupied area of Cyprus, held yesterday a general strike in the "country" and a mass protest in front of the so-called assembly.

    The "Trade Union Platform" demanded from the so-called government to find solutions to the worker's problems and the bad economic and social conditions that prevail in the "TRNC".

    (AK)

    [10] The Green Crescent Association of the breakaway regime participated in UNGASS 2016

    Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris newspaper (09.12.15) reports that the breakaway regime participated in the UN General Assembly's Special Session (UNGASS) 2016 on drugs which took place in Istanbul.

    The paper writes that the Green Crescent Association of the breakaway regime attended the meeting which was held with the participation of European and Middle Eastern countries and notes that 50 civil society organizations from 20 countries participated in the meeting.

    Kibris also reports that the next meeting will be held in New York next April.

    (TR. Note: Green Crescent (Turkish: Yesilay), is a non-profit organization that fights smoking, alcohol, and other addictions such as drug use, and provides services and protection methods to all citizens).

    (CS)

    [11] EP Turkey Rapporteur: Ankara did its part in tackling the refugee problem

    Turkish daily Sabah (online, 09.12.15) reports that the European Parliament's (EP) Turkey Rapporteur, Kati Piri, said that, in many ways, Turkey did what it could to tackle the refugee problem, stressing that Europe was too late in its response and offers for assistance. Speaking to Daily Sabah during an official five-day visit to Ankara, the Dutch parliamentarian said that it's not realistic to expect the flow of illegal immigrants into Turkey to be completely halted ? even after the historic Refugee Action Plan was sealed between Turkey and the EU on Nov. 29. "I think in many ways Turkey did what it could and I have always commended the government for doing so. And Europe was too late in its response and offers, which perhaps were not always the most genuine", she added.

    Turkey's new government is expected to announce a road map for EU reforms on Friday. When asked whether she is convinced by the new government's determination to implement the EU reforms, Piri said that it is good to see new ambition within the new government but stressed that they need to wait and see the reform as it is implemented. "My hope is really that, under these terms where the European Commission is concerned, the European Parliament will be able to say that we see things heading in the right direction with the new government, in the coming months. Thus, this is my hope, this is why I'm here and this is why I am engaging in dialogue with the concerned Ministers." Underlining that the visa liberalization is a key issue for Turkey, Piri also drew attention to potential delays which depend on Turkey's performance ability to achieve the desired 72 requests for visa free travel in Europe for Turkish citizens. ''I really want to make sure that we can get to that phase by October. But we must also be frank in that there are 72 requirements to be met", she added

    The EU will open Chapter 17 for negotiations on Dec. 14 after a two-year hiatus. Beside this, Turkey is expecting to open five more chapters in the first half of 2016. Commenting on this issue, Piri reminded Turkey that these chapters have been blocked due to the Cyprus issue and it might be possible to open these chapters if Turkish and Greek sides will reach a compromise on the reunification of the island. "I am very positive regarding this issue. Perhaps now is the biggest opportunity ever to solve it. If a positive conclusion comes, many chapters could be opened. And these chapters are, of course, very logical when you look at their relationship, these are very strategic chapters to open. This is an Energy and Foreign Affairs issue but it is also at the core of the accession process, rule of law and the freedom of expression, which were also some concerns voiced by the EU," she said.

    On the same issue, Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (online, 08.12.15) reported that a "reform action group" will be convened on Dec. 11 in a bid to coordinate future moves to harmonize Turkey's legislation with EU standards, amid the recent energization of Ankara's EU accession process.

    Turkish EU Minister Volkan Bozkir announced on Dec. 8 that the group will meet under the leadership of Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu and with the participation of the Foreign, Interior and Justice Ministers.

    Stating that there is an "important paradigm change" in the relationship between Ankara and Brussels, Bozkir said the government is working to coordinate the steps to be taken in the upcoming period.

    God willing, we will open accession chapter 17 next Monday [Dec. 14]," Bozkir said, speaking to reporters at a meeting with Kati Piri, the Turkey Rapporteur of the European Parliament.

    Regarding the letter recently sent by European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker to Prime Minister Davutoglu, Bozkir said the letter was an "appendix" to the Turkey-EU joint statement made after the recent joint summit, and named the five chapters that the Commission will work to open.

    [12] Cavusoglu and Kerry discussed the Iraqi issue

    Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (online, 09.12.15) reports that Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu conducted phone conversations with U.S. Secretary State John Kerry and Qatari Foreign Minister Mohammed al-Attiyah late Dec. 8 to discuss regional developments, particularly Iraq, according to official sources.

    The phone conversations of Cavusoglu with Turkey's two best allies in the region occurred amid reports of preparations for a massive military operation to liberate the strategic Iraqi city of Mosul from the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL).

    Diplomatic sources said Cavusoglu was in Pakistan to attend a regional conference when he spoke with his counterparts over the phone.

    [13] Demirtas blasts EU and US for relations with Turkish government

    Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (online, 09.12.15) reports that the co-chair of the Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP) Selahattin Demirtas has chastised both the European Union and the U.S. administration for their approach to the ruling Justice and Development Party's (AKP) style of governance, accusing the EU of covering up the Turkish government's crimes and U.S. President Barack Obama of recognizing President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's de facto change of the country's regime.

    "The EU has marketed its own principles. The EU is now in a position to be questioned about human rights and the Copenhagen Criteria", Demirtas told a group of journalists on Dec. 8, referring to developing relations between the EU and Ankara after the EU agreed at a summit on Nov. 29 to a three-billion-euro ($3.2 billion) aid deal to stem the flow of migrants from Turkey, which is hosting over two million Syrian refugees.

    In the first days of December, it was revealed in a statement signed by EU Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker that the EU had provided a commitment to Ankara to launch necessary procedures on five accession chapters currently under veto by Cyprus.

    Demirtas' remarks came when he was asked whether recent progress in Turkey-EU relations would serve as leverage for addressing the deterioration of human rights and freedoms in Turkey. "Just to have the refugee problem resolved, the EU has covered up all crimes of the AKP government by turning a blind eye to all violations of human rights. It has made human rights an issue for bargaining in international relations," he said. "Even if the negotiations are opened, no move such as pressing the AKP should be expected from the EU. The EU is powerless; it can't even find a remedy for its own problem," he added.

    [14] Turkey not planning to revise Montreux Convention on Bosphorus rights

    According to Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (online, 08.12.15), Turkey is not involved in any plans to revise the Montreux Convention that regulates international access to the Bosphorus and the Dardanelles Straits, Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Tanju Bilgic said on Dec. 8, refuting reports that the convention could be renewed amid ongoing tension between Ankara and Moscow. "We don't currently have any preparation to that end. But anything could be subject to assessment due to developments", Bilgic said, referring to a part of an article in the Convention that allows the accord to be revised every 20 years. TURKISH AFFAIRS SECTION

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

    (DPs / AM)


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