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Turkish Cypriot Press and Other Media 96-08-20

From: "HR-Net News Distribution Manager" <dist@hri.org>

Republic of Cyprus Press and Information Office Directory

TURKISH CYPRIOT PRESS AND OTHER MEDIA

No.148/96 20.8.96


CONTENTS

[A] NEWS ITEMS

  • [01] Washington's apology for Spokesman Burns' remarks reported.

  • [02] Denktash accepts the idea of a joint declaration.

  • [03] Ecevit says Turkey should control occupied area's affairs.

  • [04] New "government" assumes duties.

  • [05] Denktash meets British High Commissioner.

  • [06] Erbakan: Greeks will lose more in confrontation.


  • [A] NEWS ITEMS

    [01] Washington's apology for Spokesman Burns' remarks reported

    According to HURRIYET (18.8.96) Washington apologized for State Department Spokesman Nicholas Burns' statement which described the Turkish flag as a piece of cloth. Burns condemned the shooting of the Greek Cypriot youth Solomos Solomou who tried to lower the Turkish flag in Cyprus. He said: "Human life is more important than protecting a piece of cloth."

    According to the paper, in view of the serious reaction his statement drew from the Turkish people, Washington apologized to Ankara through the diplomatic channels. Reliable sources have informed HURRIYET that US officials deeply regretted Burns' statement, saying: "Burns has exceeded his official authority with his remarks."

    It has been reported that Burns' statement may have adverse effects on the success of his career or the US Administration may seriously warn him.

    [02] Denktash accepts the idea of a joint declaration

    According to illegal Bayrak (8:00 hours 20.8.96) Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash has stated that he has accepted the proposal made a few days ago by the UN Secretary-General's deputy special representative in Cyprus, Gustave Feissel, for the issuing of a joint declaration with President Clerides after meeting at Feissel's residence.

    Denktash said that the idea is not to issue separate messages. He added that President Clerides has yet to reply to Feissel's proposal. (MY)

    [03] Ecevit says Turkey should control occupied area's affairs

    According to Turkish Daily News (17.8.96), opposition Democratic Left Party (DSP) leader Bulent Ecevit suggested that Turkey evolve what he called "an autonomous relationship" with the pseudostate. He claimed that it was important for the security and tranquility of the Turkish Cypriots that Turkey undertake the responsibility for the external security and foreign affairs of "the independent state of the TRNC."

    Ecevit held a press conference at Parliament to claim that Greek Cypriots had severed the dialogue with Turkish Cypriots since the start of Cyprus's process of becoming a full member of the European Union (EU).

    "The recent incidents have shown what a disaster EU membership would be for the Turkish Cypriots", Ecevit claimed. He added that though the time had come for Turkey to determine a new Cyprus policy hand-in-hand with the "TRNC", Turkey was being "timid and passive" on this issue.

    He said: "The continued presence of the Turkish troops in Cyprus is needed for the security of not only the Turkish Cypriots but also for the security of Turkey itself. This is because Cyprus is vitally important for the security of the Iskenderun and Mersin ports, the Yumurtalik (Iraqi-Turkish) oil pipeline, and our Mediterranean region as a whole. Cyprus has a far greater strategic importance for Turkey than for Britain, which has military bases on the island."

    [04] New "government" assumes duties

    According to illegal Bayrak radio (10:30 hours, 19.8.96), the so-called ministers serving in the National Unity Party (NUP)- Democratic Party (DP) "coalition government", which was formed by Dervis Eroglu, assumed their new duties yesterday. Dervis Eroglu, who is the new "prime minister", has assumed the duties from Hakki Atun.

    "It is inevitable that we will try to eliminate the pressure put on our foreign policy and adopt a new strategy in a bid to give certain messages to the outside world", Eroglu said.

    Further stating that the relations with motherland Turkey will increase even further, Eroglu added that these relations will develop by adopting a warmer approach.

    [05] Denktash meets British High Commissioner

    According to YENIDUZEN (20.8.96), Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash had a meeting yesterday with the British High Commissioner to Cyprus, David Madden.

    There was no statement after the meeting.(MY)

    [06] Erbakan: Greeks will lose more in confrontation

    According to Turkish Daily News (19.8.96), Turkish Prime Minister, Necmettin Erbakan, apportioning "half the blame" to the West for last weeks events in Cyprus, alleged that if anything happens as a result of these incidents the Greek side would emerge with much greater losses than the Turks.

    "Turkey's population is 65 million. Greece's population on the other hand is only 15 million. We have as many students in school as Greece's population. They know that we are superior by folds in every field, in the air, in the sea and on land. What they are doing is not something that a clever person would ever do," Erbakan was quoted by the Anatolia news agency as saying. The Turkish prime minister issued these warning remarks during a press conference last Saturday in Malaysia, on the fourth leg of his tour of five nations.

    Referring to last week's demonstrations in Cyprus, Erbakan said: "If only they had come with flowers instead of anarchic incidents, with the PKK and with terrorism, because if anything happens at the end of these incidents they will come out with much greater losses, this is apparent." Maintaining that there was "encouragement" of Western countries for the incidents in Cyprus, Erbakan said that Western countries had to "come to their senses (and) caution Greece." "When Turkey is strong these injustices will decrease. I see days ahead of Turkey when it will be very strong," Erbakan said. EF/SK

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