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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Cypriot and Turkish Media Review, 17-07-13

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. 133/17 13.07.17

[A] TURKISH CYPRIOT / TURKISH PRESS

  • [01] Cavusoglu: "We cannot remain apathetic to Greek Cypriots' unilateral activities, we will also take steps"
  • [02] Mediterranean Sea's waters have warmed up because of Cyprus' drilling for hydrocarbons, alleges the Turkish Cypriot press
  • [03] Ozgurgun: "Bond with Turkey cannot be broken"
  • [04] CTP leader argued that the return to the Republic of Cyprus or connecting with Turkey is not their alternative solution
  • [05] Talat: "A solution outside the UN parameters is not possible"
  • [06] Reactions to the failure of the Cyprus talks in Crans-Montana
  • [07] Columnist: The UN and Akinci did not react to Cavusoglu's statement that UN parameters for a solution in Cyprus cease to exist
  • [08] Saner holds contacts in Ivory Coast
  • [09] Atalay's dismissal has been repeatedly demanded; He says that they consider him head of FETO in the occupied area of Cyprus
  • [10] 28 more persons "obtained" the "TRNC citizenship"
  • [11] Data on the occupation regime's 2016 balance of payments were announced
  • [12] Israel hopes to conclude gas pipeline deal with Turkey by end of year
  • [13] EU is wasting Turkey's time, Erdogan says
  • [14] Erdogan: Turkey could lift state of emergency 'in near future'
  • [15] Main opposition slams ruling AKP over July 15 commemoration events
  • [16] US embassy issues security message over Turkey coup attempt commemoration events
  • [17] "Towards an Erdogan-Bahceli partnership"
  • [18] Former Turkish President Gul strictly rules out any contact with Gulen

  • [A] TURKISH CYPRIOT / TURKISH PRESS

    [01] Cavusoglu: "We cannot remain apathetic to Greek Cypriots' unilateral activities, we will also take steps"

    Under the above title, Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris Postasi newspaper (13.07.17, onlinehttp://www.kibrispostasi.com/cavusoglu-rumlarin-tek-tarfli-faaliyetlerine-duyarsiz-kalama) reports that Turkish Foreign Minister, Mevlut Cavusoglu has said that Turkey will take measures against the Republic of Cyprus' explorations for natural gas. In statements after meeting his counterpart from Gambia, Cavusoglu alleged: "The TRNC has also rights on the reserves around Cyprus. The Greek Cypriot side is carrying out unilateral activities". He also alleged that the Greek Cypriots argue that the natural gas reserves belong to them, while the Turkish side expresses the view that the reserves belong to all sides.

    Referring to the Cyprus negotiations which ended unsuccessfully, Cavusoglu accused the Greek Cypriot side of being "insincere" and claimed:

    "While we were carrying out negotiations for a solution in Cyprus, we saw that the Greek Cypriot side brought a ship to the area for drillings. It is an indication that the Greek Cypriot side is insincere on the issue of the solution. Instead of focusing on the solution, it tried to unilaterally carry out drillings in a provocative manner. Obtaining a result [of the talks] was not possible because they were not sincere. We cannot remain apathetic to the Greek Cypriots' unilateral activities. We are cooperating with the Ministry of Energy on the steps to be taken. There will be steps which we will also take against these unilateral steps".

    (I/Ts.)

    [02] Mediterranean Sea's waters have warmed up because of Cyprus' drilling for hydrocarbons, alleges the Turkish Cypriot press

    Under the banner front-page title "Waters have warmed up", Turkish Cypriot daily Havadis newspaper (13.07.17) reports that right after the collapse of the negotiating process for reaching a solution to the Cyprus problem, the Republic of Cyprus' hydrocarbon explorations came onto the agenda.

    Citing information from the Greek Cypriot press, the paper notes that the West Capella drilling platform arrived at block 11 of Cyprus' Exclusive Economic Zone and adds that two French frigates and airplanes will be providing protection during the drillings. According to the paper, the information that Turkey will carry out military maneuver with "armed missiles" as of 17 July caused "serious concern" in the government-controlled area of the island and "fell like a bomb onto the agenda".

    Turkish Cypriot daily Halkin Sesi newspaper (13.07.17) refers to the issue under the banner-front page title "Maneuver against the drilling" and Turkish Cypriot daily Afrika newspaper (13.07.17) under the title "Alarm in the sea".

    (I/Ts.)

    [03] Ozgurgun: "Bond with Turkey cannot be broken"

    Illegal Bayrak television (13.07.17) broadcast that the self-styled prime minister Huseyin Ozgurgun stated that "the bond between the Turkish Cypriot people and the Turkish nation which it feels proud to being part of can never be broken".

    In a written statement on the Cyprus problem, he said that the decision adopted by the "Greek Cypriot House of Representatives" to mark ENOSIS day at schools was proof that the Greek Cypriot side's mentality will never change.

    "We repeatedly stressed that the Greek Cypriots fanatical mentality has not changed nor will it ever change, and that the Greek Cypriots do not desire a federal solution on the basis of the two peoples on the island", he alleged.

    Ozgurgun said that they had also stressed repeatedly that "the negotiations carried out under these circumstances were nothing more than a waste of time".

    He claimed that both the United Nations and the European Union had once again "observed the intransigent stance of the Greek-Greek Cypriot duo that was evident to all scenarios and strategies in Crans Montana with the dream of breaking the bond between the Turkish Cypriots and motherland Turkey".

    Referring to the latest remarks by the Greek Cypriot leader Nicos Anastasiades who expressed the view that "Turkish Cypriots should cut their umbilical cord with Turkey", Ozgurgun claimed that these remarks must most likely be the result of "sun stroke suffered by the Greek Cypriot leader".

    "Both the Greek-Greek Cypriot duo and the Greek Cypriot leader Nicos Anastasiades should know that the bond that exists between the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus, Turkey and the Turkish nation is an historical one, a source of pride which can never be broken" he alleged.

    [04] CTP leader argued that the return to the Republic of Cyprus or connecting with Turkey is not their alternative solution

    Turkish Cypriot daily Yeni Duzen newspaper (13.07.17) reports that Tufan Erhurman, the leader of the Republican Turkish Party (CTP) criticized Cyprus President Anastasiades' call on Turkish Cypriots to decide "whether they will join the Republic of Cyprus or Turkey". He added: "Anastasiades should keep a rein on his tongue. Our alternatives are neither the return to the Republic of Cyprus nor union with Turkey". He said that he felt ashamed discussing such things.

    Speaking yesterday morning to the Turkish Cypriot private channel Sim TV, Erhurman also commented on the Cyprus talks in Crans-Montana and said that issues, which had not been discussed until today, were put on the negotiating table and a historic approach was obtained. He also claimed that "Anastasiades made serious mistakes and that the Turkish side made important openings". He argued that there was very little ground to cover in order to reach the solution, but in the end, there was no a result.

    Criticizing Anastasiades for continuously promoting his "maximalist" positions, Erhurman argued that negotiations ended the same way they started and added: "His opening position was zero army and his closing position was zero guarantees". He also accused Anastasiades of not trying to persuade the Greek Cypriot community to accept the rotating presidency as they tried to persuade the Turkish Cypriot community to feel secure with only 650 Turkish soldiers instead of 30-40 thousand soldiers.

    (DPs)

    [05] Talat: "A solution outside the UN parameters is not possible"

    Under the title: "?here is no point in looking for other adventures", Turkish Cypriot daily Yeni Bakis newspaper (13.07.17) reports that the former Turkish Cypriot leader Mehmet Ali Talat stated that a solution outside the UN parameters was not possible noting that such solutions would be against Turkish Cypriot interests.

    In statements to the paper, Talat said that the Cyprus negotiations would resume after the "Greek Cypriot elections": "I have said it in the past ; negotiating during an election period would be hard", he stated.

    Referring to the gas drilling, Talat said that "this constituted a very dangerous initiative that usurped the Turkish Cypriots' right and would cause reactions from both Turkey and the Turkish Cypriots".

    He also expressed the opinion that gas drilling should have started following a solution to the Cyprus problem.

    (CS)

    [06] Reactions to the failure of the Cyprus talks in Crans-Montana

    Under the title "Don't expect to become a patch to the Greek Cypriots", Turkish Cypriot daily Gunes newspaper (13.07.17) reports that Dursun Oguz, "deputy" with the National Unity Party (UBP) said that the Turkish Cypriots should act according to the "realities" and based on the knowledge regarding what the Greek Cypriots want. He added: "The Cyprus talks have been continuing for 42 years now, we have not died. We take measures on the economic field and utilize them in order for the country to be viable".

    Speaking on the Turkish Cypriot private channel Kibris TV, Oguz stressed that as "prime minister" Ozgurgun had already said, "we would not become a patch to the Greek Cypriots". He added: "However, we are not the 82nd Turkish province. There is a state that will live in the world and the Turkish Cypriots will stand on their own feet".

    Moreover, Turkish Cypriot daily Star Kibris newspaper (13.07.17) reports that Erhan Arikli, leader of the Revival Party (YDP) (translator's note: the political party of the Turkish settlers in the occupied area of Cyprus), argued that the 50 year negotiation process ended in Crans-Montana and that the Turkish Cypriots have new alternatives and parameters before them. Arikli claimed that there were some circles in Cyprus who had not yet accepted the reality that the federation thesis had collapsed. He claimed that those persons belonged to the political and commercial circles and were the "solution artisans". He said that "nothing will be the same again in the TRNC and now they will implement plan B. Political parties, institutions and organizations should accept this reality".

    Meanwhile, Murat Kanatli, the general Secretary of the New Cyprus Party (YKP), commenting on the latest stage of the Cyprus talks, argued that it would take strength for the UN to say that they would completely withdraw from the negotiation process. Kanatli said that the document, which the UN submitted and was described as a "framework proposal", could not be ignored by those who wanted solution within the framework of the UN parameters. Kanatli further said: "We should end the unilateral intervention right and the Treaty of guarantees. We should take a new security system that all the Cypriots will feel secure with" and added that they, as YKP, thought that those who wanted the continuation of the unilateral intervention right, did not want solution.

    (DPs)

    [07] Columnist: The UN and Akinci did not react to Cavusoglu's statement that UN parameters for a solution in Cyprus cease to exist

    Writing in his column in Turkish Cypriot daily Afrika newspaper (13.07.17), Mehmet Levent reports that the UN and the Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci had not commented on Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu's statement that the UN parameters for the solution in Cyprus have ceased to exist. Levent reports, inter alia, the following:

    "The UN parameters, which have been taken for years as criteria during the efforts for a solution to the Cyprus problem, had until now been a nightmare for Turkey, which was never seeing positively a solution within these parameters. Turkey has launched a great effort to make use of the point we have reached, in order to abolish these [parameters] and erase the Cyprus problem from the UN files! As soon as Guterres announced that the Crans Montana Conference had collapsed, Cavusoglu jumped at it with enthusiasm and spilled the beans, which had in his mouth from the very beginning of the process! 'The UN parameters, which were a criterion until today in the solution of the problem, have been abolished now with this result', he said!

    Turkey wants to legalize all the illegal fait accompli, which it has created in Cyprus after the 1974 invasion! It wants a 'solution', which will protect its military and civilian presence here and register as a right any kind of unilateral intervention whenever and in the way it likes! It wants a 'solution', which will not harm its sovereignty here, its existence, and its strategic and economic interests! And finally, it wants a 'solution' with the acceptance of the demand of the four freedoms for the Turkish population of 80 million, which it threw onto the table as a hand grenade with the aim to lead the Crans Montana Conference towards collapse!

    Cavusoglu's statement that the UN parameters had been abolished was not a situation brought about by the fact that the conference ended unsuccessfully. Turkey knew this result from before and had been prepared much earlier to make the statement regarding the UN parameters instantly! Turkey does not recognize these parameters anymore! It has stated this many times at the highest level! Very well, can Turkey unilaterally declare that the UN parameters were abolished? It cannot. It should not be able to do so. Has there been a statement by the UN on this stance by Turkey? As far as I know, there has not been one! Has the UN said that 'Turkey cannot decide alone that the UN parameters have been abolished'? No it has not! [?] And now, if the information we receive is correct, they say that they are looking for showy ways to put the blame of the non-solution to the Greek Cypriot side! [?]

    Very well, what has Akinci said for Turkey's statement that 'the UN parameters have been abolished now'? It is perhaps difficult to believe, but he said nothing! As far as I know, he made absolutely no comment! Who knows, perhaps he considered this statement as very unimportant! Is it possible that for this reason he did not find it worthy of even been taken seriously into consideration? Turkey is sweeping the UN parameters away! And neither the UN nor Akinci are saying a single word on this issue! [?]"

    (I/Ts.)

    [08] Saner holds contacts in Ivory Coast

    Illegal Bayrak television (13.07.17) broadcast that the self-styled minister of labour and social security Hamza Ersan Saner held meetings as part of his contacts in the Ivory Coast.

    According to a statement released by the "ministry", Saner met with the Secretary General of the Organization for Islamic Cooperation Dr. Yousef bin Ahmad Al-Othaimeen.

    According to Bayrak "Saner briefed the OIC Secretary General on the course of the Cyprus problem, and also expressed the belief that the OIC will increase its support to the rightful cause of the Turkish Cypriot people".

    Touching upon the decision taken on Cyprus during the 44th Foreign Ministers Council of the OIC, he conveyed to the OIC Secretary General their expectations from member countries "to show more solidarity with the Turkish Cypriot people and to take concrete steps for the removal of the isolation".

    Stressing the importance for the OIC Secretary General and high level officials from the OIC member countries to visit the "Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus," he invited OIC Secretary General Dr. Yousef bin Ahmad Al-Othaimeen to an event planned to be held in the breakaway regime.

    OIC Secretary General Dr. Yousef bin Ahmad Al-Othaimeen for his part said that he was following the Cyprus negotiations process closely and stressed that their support for the Turkish Cypriots will continue increasingly.

    Meanwhile, as part of his contacts, Saner also held meetings with ministers and officials from Pakistan, Qatar, Somalia, Sudan, Central African Republic and Bosnia-Herzegovina.

    He also met with the President of the Islamic Centre for Development of Trade and Islamic Solidarity Fund and held meetings where he exchanged views on the events and projects planned to be held in the breakaway regime.

    [09] Atalay's dismissal has been repeatedly demanded; He says that they consider him head of FETO in the occupied area of Cyprus

    Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris Postasi newspaper (13.07.17) reports that Talip Atalay's dismissal from his duties as "head" of the occupation regime's "religious affairs' department" has been repeatedly demanded, but a decision has always been delayed by the regime's "presidency". Recalling that Atalay had been recently arrested and interrogated in Mersin, Turkey, within the framework of the FETO/PYD operations but was conditionally released, the paper writes that the dismissal of Atalay from his duties had been demanded more than once by the Turkish "embassy" in the occupied area of Cyprus, by the EVKAF religious foundation's administration and the current UBP-DP self-styled government. All the demands were rejected by Turkish Cypriot leader Akinci, according to the article which added that Turkey's stance against Atalay had been exhibited for the first time during Ozkan Yorgancioglu term as "prime minister" when it submitted a request for an annulment of his appointment. The same demand was sent to Akinci's office on 22 May 2015 by EVKAF with a letter signed by Ibrahim Benter, general director of the foundation. The demand was based on the opinion of EVKAF's lawyer Orun Solyali that Atalay acted contrary to the contract he had sighed and was carrying out political activities. Akinci was asked not to renew the contract, but he ignored this demand. The same demand was submitted by Huseyin Ozgurgun's current "government" more than once, but Akinci did not reply to this, because Atalay's positive dialogue with Archbishop Chrysostomos and the initiative of engaging into a dialogue among Cyprus' religious leaders was useful for the Cyprus negotiations. According to the paper, after the recent developments, Akinci's reply to the above-mentioned demand is expected with interest.

    Meanwhile, Turkish Cypriot daily Yeni Duzen newspaper (13.07.17) publishes exclusive statements by Atalay, who said that he did not want to comment on the fact that the regime's "authorities" made no statement on his arrest. "You will interpret this", he said adding that those who "were dealing with him" the most were the former "heads" of the so-called civil defense organization, Fatih Yarimbas and Firat Alakus. He noted that the "source" of the indictment prepared about him in Turkey is the occupied part of Cyprus and added:

    "In the file, reference is made to me as one of the heads of FETO in Cyprus. Such a report was submitted in February through the Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs. In March they say that an arrest warrant was issued against me. I went to Turkey and came back many times and I was not arrested. If a letter went for me from here, through whom did it go? I will not resign".

    (I/Ts.)

    [10] 28 more persons "obtained" the "TRNC citizenship"

    According to Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris newspaper (13.7.17), the "council of ministers" of the "coalition government" UBP-DP of the breakaway regime in the occupied area of the Republic of Cyprus "decided" to "grant the TRNC citizenship" to 28 more persons according to "article 9, paragraph (1), clause (c) of the citizenship law No. 25/1993".

    The names of those who "obtained" the "TRNC citizenship" were published in the paper.

    (DPs)

    [11] Data on the occupation regime's 2016 balance of payments were announced

    Turkish Cypriot daily Vatan newspaper (13.07.17) reports that the occupation regime's "state planning organization" ("DPO") announced yesterday that the net income from tourism in 2016 increased by 41,7 million US dollars comparing to 2015 and reached 739,4 million from 697,7 million dollars.

    According to "DPO's" figures regarding the regime's balance of payments in 2016, the net income from higher education reached 694,8 million dollars making an increase of 58,6 million dollars.

    Turkey's aid decreased by 33,5 million dollars in 2016 compared to 2015 dropping to 167,3 million from 200,8 million dollars. The aid provided by the EU and UNDP increased to 36,9 million dollars in 2016 from 28,1 million.

    According to foreign trade data, exports were 118,1 million dollars in 2015 and decreased to 105,5 million in 2016. Imports, on the other hand, increased from one billion 500,6 million dollars in 2015 to one billion 554,9 million dollars in 2016. Therefore, the trade deficit increased to one billion 449,4 million dollars in 2016 from one billion 382,5 million dollars in 2015. The current account balance showed a surplus of 271,6 million dollars in 2015 and 289,9 million dollars in 2016.

    Credits given by Turkey were 100 million dollars in 2015 and decreased to 72,9 million dollars in 2016.

    Finally, payments by the "Immovable Property Commission" were 19,4 million dollars in 2015 and increased to 25 million dollars in 2016.

    (I/Ts.)

    [12] Israel hopes to conclude gas pipeline deal with Turkey by end of year

    Turkish daily Sabah newspaper (13.07.17) reports that the Turkish Energy Minister Berat Albayrak is set to visit Israel by the end of this year to conclude an agreement for the building of a natural gas pipeline to Turkey, the Israeli energy minister said.

    Israeli Energy Minister Yuval Steinitz said that both countries decided to accelerate efforts to conclude by the end of this year an intergovernmental agreement that will enable the construction of a pipeline from Israel to Turkey.

    "Hopefully, Mr. Albayrak will pay a visit to Israel this year in 2017, which will help us accelerate and try to conclude this agreement," the minister said at the 22nd World Petroleum Congress in Istanbul after meeting Albayrak.

    He added that no exact date had been fixed but it would take place in the coming months.

    Steinitz said that energy is an important token in the process of developing normalization and bilateral relations between Turkey and Israel. Noting that energy-related developments in the region are changing rapidly, Steinitz said that the important natural gas reserve in the Eastern Mediterranean is an example of this.

    Emphasizing that there are scientific studies showing the presence of more natural gas reserves in Israel's exclusive economic zone, Steinitz said that there is a large amount of natural gas in the region, including off Cyprus and Egypt.

    As Western Europe meets its natural gas needs from resources in Russia and the North Sea, Steinitz said that resources in the North Sea are on the verge of running out, adding that a serious decline in natural gas production in the region is expected.

    He remarked that the importance of explorations in the Eastern Mediterranean increased in light of these developments, continuing: "We believe that the resources in the North Sea will be replaced by the resources in the Eastern Mediterranean in the coming period. Europe will receive natural gas from the Eastern Mediterranean and this region will become a reliable resource."

    "We want to build a pipeline stretching from Israel to Turkey in order to be able to export natural gas from Israel to Turkey," Steinitz said, adding that the Israeli gas could be delivered to Europe and to the Balkans through Turkey.

    Steinitz highlighted a scientific exploratory evaluation according to which the majority of the significant oil and natural gas reserves in Israeli waters have yet to be explored.

    "It was evaluated that more than other 2,200 billion cubic meters of natural gas have yet to be discovered," he said.

    [13] EU is wasting Turkey's time, Erdogan says

    Turkish daily Sabah newspaper (13.07.17) reports that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan stated that Turkey did not see the EU as indispensable, said in an interview published on Wednesday.

    Speaking to BBC, Erdogan said that Turkey would remain "loyal to its word" reiterating the country's wish to join the union.

    "If the EU bluntly says, 'we will not be able to accept Turkey into the EU' this will relax us. We will then initiate our plan B, and C. The European Union is not indispensable for us... We are comfortable," Erdogan said.

    On Tuesday, the European Parliament adopted the annual report of Turkey rapporteur Kati Piri, suggesting the suspension of accession talks with Turkey. Ankara said the vote, which is not legally binding, was an attempt to sabotage the recent positivity surrounding talks between the bloc and Turkey.

    Erdogan recalled his first term as prime minister, saying that the EU had praised Turkey for accomplishing a "silent revolution" during leaders' summits.

    "But now the same EU not only doesn't invite us to the leaders' summits any more, they also waste our time. This is the situation right now," the president said.

    According to Erdogan, most Turks no longer want to join the EU, believing that the union treats Turkey "insincerely."

    "Despite all this we will continue being sincere with the EU for a little longer. We will see what that brings for us," Erdogan added.

    Speaking about the ongoing crisis involving Qatar and four Arab nations, including Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Egypt and Bahrain, Erdogan said that Turkey was not a part of the rift and that the country wanted to promote dialogue and peace in the Gulf region.

    "We are in a hurry to find a solution here. Turkey is never in favor of Muslims killing Muslims in this region. We don't want to see Muslim fighting against Muslims. We are fed up with this," Erdogan said.

    The president added that Turkey paid a heavy price because of what happened in Yemen, Libya, Palestine, and Syria, that was why the country did not accept the blockade on Qatar.

    The Saudi-led anti-Qatar axis previously issued an ultimatum, including demands for Qatar to shut down a Turkish military base in Doha, the closure of Al Jazeera and curbing ties with Iran.

    Qatar rejected the 13-point list of demands its neighbors made for lifting their sanctions.

    [14] Erdogan: Turkey could lift state of emergency 'in near future'

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (13.07.17) reports that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Wednesday Turkey could in the future lift the state of emergency that had been imposed following last year's defeated coup.

    Speaking at an event organized for foreign capital investors in Ankara, Erdogan said: "Although we apply it to a very limited extent, it is possible to lift the state of emergency in the future, which is not very far."

    The president said nobody in Turkey had suffered due to the state of emergency.

    He also said judicial steps taken during FETO probes across the country have started to take shape. He added that Turkey had gained important ground in the fight against the PKK terror group as well.

    During his speech, he also slammed the decision of some European countries to ban Turkish officials from rallies or from addressing their expatriate citizens.

    "We wanted to hold a hall meeting in Hamburg, Germany, with our expats during the G20. We said that it was not necessary to hold it in Hamburg, we could do it in some other place but they did not allow it. What happened to freedom? Why are you not allowing it?" he asked.

    He said western countries did not even allow Turkish ministers to speak to their people.

    "They are afraid of freedom of thought," he said. "They are afraid because they do not trust their thoughts. As we trust in our thoughts, we are not afraid of freedom of thought. We are comfortable."

    In recent months, Turkey has strongly objected to European governments denying its officials permission to hold rallies or address expatriate citizens. This included Erdogan, who last week wanted to address Turkish expats in Germany when he visited for the G20 summit, and several officials who were banned from addressing citizens ahead of Turkey's April 16 constitutional referendum.

    On media freedom, the president said: "It is not be possible to have unlimited freedom in the media. If the media misuse freedom in order to destabilize the country? they will have to face justice as well," he said.

    Last month, main opposition party deputy Enis Berberoglu, who was a journalist as well, was sentenced to 25 years in prison for leaking secret information of political or military espionage.

    [15] Main opposition slams ruling AKP over July 15 commemoration events

    Turkish Hurriyet Daily News (13.07.17) reports that main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) deputy leader Bulent Tezcan has accused the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) in Turkey of dividing the country in two and excluding the opposition from July 15 commemoration events.

    "The AKP is running a marginalization campaign over the July 15 commemorations," Tezcan said following a Central Executive Board meeting on July 12.

    The presidential program for the July 15 commemoration event in parliament is set to host President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Parliament Speaker Ibrahim Kahraman, Prime Minister Binali Y?ld?r?m and opposition Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) leader Devlet Bahceli.

    Tezcan criticized the government for "dividing the parliament."

    As part of weeklong commemorations, the parliament is slated to host two events. One on July 15, where all party leaders will give speeches for 10 minutes each in a special session at the general assembly. The other will be in the early morning hours of July 16 in front of the parliament building.

    "They have organized a special program in parliament under the presidency. The AKP leader, his deputy, the MHP leader, and the parliament speaker will speak but the leaders of other parties will not. No one has the right to divide the parliament," Tezcan said. "You do not have the right to make arbitrary choices in parliament by deciding on who gets to speak," he added.

    Stressing that all parties resisted against the coup on the night of July 15, Tezcan said the resistance was not led solely by the AKP.

    "You cannot make it a veil that you use to cover up your own mistakes. We will not allow this," Tezcan added.

    Stating that the CHP did not receive any information or invitations for the event on July 16, CHP deputy group leader Ozgur Ozel said a platform in the set up parliament's garden was without informing the opposition parties. "If the AKP and the MHP want to celebrate something, that date should be the July 20 state of emergency coup.

    CHP leader Kemal K?l?cdaroglu had already instructed his party across Turkey to attend commemorations throughout this week.

    [16] US embassy issues security message over Turkey coup attempt commemoration events

    Turkish Hurriyet Daily news (13.07.17) reports that the United States Embassy has issued a security warning with regard to the over upcoming July 15 coup attempt commemorations across Turkey, advising U.S. citizens to avoid demonstrations and large gatherings.

    "The U.S. Mission to Turkey urges U.S. citizens traveling or residing in Turkey to exercise caution and avoid demonstrations and large gatherings. Even demonstrations intended to be peaceful can turn confrontational and escalate into violence," read a written statement issued by the embassy on July 12.

    The statement noted that on July 15 and the preceding days, government and non-government groups would stage large commemorations such as rallies and marches in public squares and other places throughout the country to commemorate Democracy and Freedoms Day.

    "Media sources state that the Parliament building and other government offices in Ankara, the July 15 Martyrs Bridge in Istanbul and other sites nationwide will host events. The Turkish authorities have yet to release a comprehensive list of all events, including times or locations. U.S. citizens should monitor local news reports and avoid areas where gatherings might occur, which can happen with little advance notice," it added.

    [17] "Towards an Erdogan-Bahceli partnership"

    Under the above title, Turkish Hurriyet Daily News (13.07.17) publishes the following article by Murat Yetkin:

    "The Turkish Parliament's Constitution Commission is scheduled to start debating a draft to change parliament's internal law on July 18.

    The draft was suggested by President Tayyip Erdogan following the April 16 referendum, which consolidated all executive power in the presidency and increased presidential influence in parliament by allowing the head of state to legally chair a party.

    [?]

    This is the third time in a row that Erdogan has received strategic support from Bahceli in matters of crucial importance.

    The first example was Bahceli's support in declaring a state of emergency on July 20, 2016, right after the failed coup attempt of July 15, 2016.

    The second was his support in parliament regarding the constitutional changes. This support was vital for Erdogan to take the changes to the referendum in April.

    The third is his support for making these controversial changes to the internal law of the parliament.

    These three examples give an idea about a possible partnership, such as in the next general elections. The next election is scheduled for 2019, though there is speculation in Ankara that it could be brought forward and to be held next year.

    Bahceli has in the recent period lost a number of influential members of parliament, who are now working in the establishment of a new party, possibly under Meral Aksener, a former deputy speaker of parliament. There are questions about whether such a party could exceed the 10 percent national threshold to enter parliament, which also raises the same question about the MHP.

    On the other hand, the winner of the next general election, which is likely to be held together with the presidential election, would need 50 percent plus 1 vote. Any contribution from the MHP, even if the party falls below the 10 percent threshold, could thus make Erdogan and the AK Party more comfortable.

    In this situation, a contingency may be given for MHP candidates to be included in AK Party lists in the election. These names could later split off to form their own group in parliament, thus managing to by-pass the 10 percent threshold.

    Turkish politics seems to be open for such new scenarios in the near future."

    [18] Former Turkish President Gul strictly rules out any contact with Gulen

    Turkish Hurriyet Daily news (13.07.17) reports that Former Turkish President Abdullah Gul on July 12 strictly ruled out any contact with the U.S.-based Islamic preacher Fethullah Gulen after the latter claimed in an interview that he had previously met with Gul at his residence in Pennsylvania.

    "During my term in office as prime minister, foreign minister, and president, I absolutely had no meeting with this organization leader for whom I never felt sympathy in any period of my life in terms of thought, religion, and politics. I bring this to the public attention," Gul said in a message shared by the 11th Presidential Office's official Twitter account.

    In an interview aired on July 11 by the American media organization National Public Radio (NPR), Gulen claimed that he had met with 50 members of parliament at his residence, including Gul and former Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu.

    Turkish Justice Minister Bekir Bozdag on May 8 met with U.S. Attorney General Jeff Sessions in Washington, reiterating Ankara's request for Gulen's extradition.

    During the meeting, Bozdag asked Sessions to submit to court the evidence Ankara provided U.S. authorities in support of the extradition, and place Gulen under provisional arrest, according to Turkish Justice Ministry sources.

    TURKISH AFFAIRS SECTION

    http://www.pio.gov.cy

    (CS / AA)

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