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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Cypriot Press and Other Media, 97-08-20

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 <>


No. 152/97 -- 20.8.97


  • [01] Turkey's Ecevit on Cyprus.
  • [02] Mumtaz Soysal on a two-state solution.
  • [03] Denktash says EU decision to determine future of talks.

  • [04] Turkish columnist calls for division in Cyprus.


    [01] Turkey's Ecevit on Cyprus

    HURRIYET (19.8.97 Internet version) publishes an interview with Deputy Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit by correspondent Nur Batu. Asked if he is contemplating any changes in his Cyprus policy, Ecevit said: "No. It is simply that our policy has a more resolute and open style."

    To a question whether the decision of the EU to start full membership negotiations with Cyprus will lead to the final partition of the island, Ecevit claimed:

    "Of course it will. If the Greek Cypriot administration, supposedly representing the entire island, becomes a member of the EU, an organization in which Turkey is not a member, then the Turkish Cypriot community would be pressured to break ties with Turkey. It would come under Greece's pressure. The argument that the EU provides a guarantee for Turkish Cypriots also is not at all credible".

    Asked if Turkey made a big mistake by allowing the EU to establish links with Cyprus because it signed the customs union agreement with the EU, Ecevit said:

    "That argument has been made. Those who were in office then and the Foreign Ministry have insisted that no such bargain was every struck. No such bargain has been struck on the surface, but I do not know if something was done behind the scenes. In any event, anything that was said behind the scenes is not binding for Turkey. There is nothing in official documents that proves this". ..end To a comment that there is the decision of the EU Council on Cyprus, Ecevit said: "They may have reached a decision on their own. But that is not binding either on Turkey or the TRNC. For the last three years, as a result of some important developments, the Greek Cypriots have pushed for a solution that is equivalent to a unitary state. These developments are: Greece's military buildup in south Cyprus; the EU's decision to open its gates to south Cyprus; and the establishment of the Russian Federation in south Cyprus."

    Asked if the annexation of the "TRNC" is a possibility, he said: "It is absolutely out of the question. The TRNC must remain as an independent state. The integration we envisage is a partial integration.

    The relationship we are establishing with the TRNC is similar to the one among Nordic countries in the Nordic Council.

    Some members of the Nordic Council are members of the EU, others are members of NATO, and some are not. The partnership council we envisage (with the TRNC) is not much different from the Nordic Council. None of the Nordic nations have lost their independence as a result of the Nordic Council".

    In reply to a relevant question, he claimed: "The EU virtually dynamited the New York dialogue (over Cyprus). In reality, this is an act of defiance not only against Turkey but also against the United States. I do not know how well the United States will stomach this. However, the EU knowingly and blatantly thwarted a dialogue process that was started with an initiative by the United States.

    Europe does not understand Turkey's newly acquired importance, in an era that began with the end of the bipolar world. I think the United States understands it. That is why I think the United States will act more cautiously over Cyprus.

    Although the United States has not expressed this loudly, it must also be feeling tense about Russia's efforts to turn South Cyprus into a military and economic base and to place the eastern Mediterranean in its sphere of influence."

    [02] Mumtaz Soysal on a two-state solution

    TRT (15.8.97) broadcasted an interview with Mumtaz Soysal, Denktash's adviser. In reply to a relevant question, Mumtaz Soysal talked of the possibility of a two-state solution and, inter alia, said:"In other words, a Greek Cypriot state in south Cyprus, which is recognized by some countries, and a Turkish Cypriot republic in the north, which is not recognized by any other country except Turkey, can coexist as separate states.

    This does not mean that blood will be shed and that there will be a massacre. There can very well be two states which can coexist peacefully. One of these states will be under the wing of the EU and the West, and the other will be under the firm and constant wing of Turkey. I do not think that this situation warrants a panic and the adoption of erroneous steps. Any mistaken decision taken under pressure can result in the loss of north Cyprus and the migration of our people. This could lead to taking an erroneous step similar to what happened in Crete. For this reason, we believe that there is no reason for panic."

    [03] Denktash says EU decision to determined future of talks

    According to illegal Bayrak radio (5:00 hours, 20.8.97), Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash commented on the direct Cyprus talks on the Akis program broadcast on illegal Bayrak Television last night. Pointing out that future developments depend on the decision to be adopted by the EU, Denktash said:

    "The decision to be adopted by the EU will determine the fate of the talks slated for March."

    Denktash stressed that the talks on humanitarian matters conducted under the auspices of Gustave Feissel, UN Secretary General's assistant special envoy in Cyprus, will continue.


    [04] Turkish columnist calls for division in Cyprus

    Mehmet Birand, writing in SABAH (15.8.97) under the title "Let Cyprus Be Divided in Two", says: "The West, primarily the United States, has a fixation: To preserve Cyprus as a single state within a federal framework, under Greek Cypriot control. No matter what you say, you cannot make yourself heard. It is in vain to draw their attention to the division in the former Yugoslavia and the separation in Bosnia. They reply `that place was different.'

    When you point out to the impossibility of Turks and Greek Cypriots ever living together again in Cyprus, they show a strong reaction and say: `That is incorrect. These two peoples could live together.'

    This is really unfair. Most importantly, they are making a big mistake. There is no way out, other than recognizing the thesis of two sovereign states in Cyprus, to solve Turkish-Greek problems and prevent Cyprus from poisoning relations between the United States and Turkey.

    No matter what sort of a federation you establish and no matter what measures you take for the two communities to self-administer their own domestic affairs, you will still not be able to extricate yourself from this problem.

    The Turks will never be able to deliver themselves from `minority' status as long as the Greek Cypriots represent Cyprus, run foreign affairs to their liking, and have the authority to decide where and how to distribute the money entering the island. The problems will reemerge anew after a short time.

    Whereas, the more the two communities are separate from each other and allowed the freedom to act autonomously of each other, the more the problems will be simplified.

    For example, a complicated solution will render Turkish-Greek problems far more complex. Even the slightest disagreement on the island will have the two countries at each other's throats. Whenever Athens fails in exerting pressure on Turkey, it will bring the EU into developments and activate its lobby in the United States.

    In trying to ameliorate the situation, we will in fact be making the situation even worse. We will render the problems more dangerous. In an attempt to veer away from war, we would in fact be increasing the possibility of war.

    The same effects would be seen in Turkey's relations with the United States and Europe. Even the slightest dispute would immediately cause ripples in Washington and Brussels. Even if the Greek Cypriots were unjustified one hundred percent, Turkey would still be unable to explain that to the world, with the result being that enmity towards the West will rise in Turkey.

    A clearer vision requires that you divide Cyprus in two.

    The rapprochement of the two separate states later on would be far easier and less painful.

    Let us not put our future in danger just to appear sympathetic to the West. Instead of making a bad agreement, it would be far better not to make any agreement at all. Let us not fetter Turkey to the Cyprus knot. In the next decade, we might not be able to once again find a military solution. And, even if we try, we might end up paying a hefty bill."

    From the Republic of Cyprus Press and Information Office (PIO) Server at

    Cyprus Press and Information Office: Turkish Cypriot Press Review Directory - Previous Article - Next Article
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