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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Cypriot Press and Other Media, 97-10-17

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 PRESS AND OTHER MEDIA

No. 193/97 -- 17/10/97

[A] NEWS ITEMS

  • [01] TURKEY'S SEZGIN: POSTPONING TOROS EXERCISES OUT OF QUESTION
  • [02] ANAP WARNS GREECE, TURKEY WILL NOT TOLERATE SLIGHTEST CONCESSION ON CYPRUS
  • [03] CETIN ELECTED TURKISH ASSEMBLY SPEAKER
  • [04] CTP OFFICIALS LEAVE FOR TALKS IN ANKARA
  • [05] DENKTASH REPORTED IN GOOD HEALTH; TO UNDERGO ANGIOGRAPHY
  • [06] NATIONAL UNITY PARTY DETERMINED TO PERPETUATE THE PSEUDOSTATE ``TO ETERNITY''
  • [07] ACINCI CLAIMS PAPHOS BASE INAUGURATION IS GRAVE MISTAKE
  • [08] PSEUDO - ASSEMBLY MEETING POSTPONED
  • [09] TURKEY TO BUY 70 POPEYE MISSILES FROM ISRAEL
  • [10] TURKEY' S MILITARY EXERCISES NOT POSTPONED
  • [11] TURKEY PREPARING FOR TOROS EXERCISES
  • [12] DEMIREL: DIPLOMACY SHOULD BE USED BEFORE ENTERING A WAR B.
  • [B] COMMENTS AND EDITORIALS

  • [13] TURKISH COLUMNIST VIEWS HOLBROOKE'S VISIT TO ANKARA

  • [A] NEWS ITEMS

    [01] TURKEY'S SEZGIN: POSTPONING TOROS EXERCISES OUT OF QUESTION

    According to illegal Bayrak Radio (1530 hours 16/10/07), Ismet Sezgin, Turkish deputy prime minister and national defence minister, has announced that postponing the Toros exercises is out of the question. In a statement he made yesterday, Sezgin said that the statement issued by the United States following the tension created by the Nikiforos exercises, asking that the flight moratorium be observed after the exercise was concluded, came late. He stressed that postponing the Toros exercises, which will be conducted in the beginning of next month, is out of the question. Noting that he will be participating in the exercises as well, Sezgin said: ``I will participate because it is necessary, not because the Greek foreign minister participated.'' He concluded by claiming that not abiding by the flight moratorium is not a matter of courage but of disrespect.

    [02] ANAP WARNS GREECE, TURKEY WILL NOT TOLERATE SLIGHTEST CONCESSION ON CYPRUS

    According TRT (17.00 hours, 16/10/97), the Motherland Party [ANAP] has threatened Greece not to play with fire. ANAP deputy Agah Oktay Guner, in a statement after the expanded leadership council meeting, said that Turkey will not tolerate even the slightest concession on the Cyprus issue.

    ``The policy Greece has been pursuing from the very beginning though faits accomplis has reached the Turkish state's limits of tolerance. It is very wrong to push these limits. When necessary, Greece will clearly realize that it has hit a rock'' he said.

    [03] CETIN ELECTED TURKISH ASSEMBLY SPEAKER

    According to TRT (1700 hours, 16/10/97), following the results of the fourth round of voting, CHP [Republican Peoples's Party ] deputy from Gaziantep Hikmet Cetin, who received the highest number of votes, has been elected Assembly speaker with 373.

    [04] CTP OFFICIALS LEAVE FOR TALKS IN ANKARA

    According to illegal Bayrak Radio (1030 hours, 16/10/97) Republican Turkish Party [CTP] leader Mehment Ali Talat and foreign relations secretary Feridum Onsal have left for Turkey where they will be holding contacts. CTP officials will meet with Turkish Foreign Minister Ismail Cem and discuss the recent developments on the Cyprus issue and Cypriot-EU and Turkish -EU relations. The meeting was expected to be held at the Turkish Foreign Ministry yesterday.

    [05] DENKTASH REPORTED IN GOOD HEALTH; TO UNDERGO ANGIOGRAPHY

    According to illegal Bayrak Radio (1030 hours, 16/10/97) it has been reported that Rauf Denktash is in good health and that he is not suffering from cardiac arrhythmia. Dr. Sait Kenan, Denktash's physician, said that Denktash is in very good health. He added that despite his good health Denktash, who has been overworking recently and who is fatigued, should rest.

    Dr. Kenan noted that changes have been observed in Denktash's electrocardiograms during his routine check ups and that as a preventive measure, Dr. Dervis Oral, head of the cardiology department of the Ibni Sina Hospital in Ankara, was invited to Cyprus for a consultation. Dr. Kenan said that at the consultation, a decision was reached to perform an angiography on Denktash, a procedure that has never been preformed on Denktash since his cardiac vein was dilated. He added, however, that there is no urgency and that the angiography in question might he performed at a future date. In reply to a question on whether Denktash can handle a long trip in his current condition, such as the one being planned to the United States in the coming days, Dr. Kenan said: ``Our president is in very good health. He can even travel to the moon.''

    [06] NATIONAL UNITY PARTY DETERMINED TO PERPETUATE THE PSEUDOSTATE ``TO ETERNITY''

    According to illegal Bayrak Radio (15.30 hours, 16/10/97) the National Unity Party [UBP] has declared its determination ``to perpetuate the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus [TRNC] to eternity against the Greek Cypriot Administration's efforts to merge with Greece by means of attacks and war preparations, and via the EU,'' as it claims.

    In a statement he issued, UBP Secretary General Vehpi Zeki Serter announced that the UBP is determined to perpetuate the ``TRNC'' to eternity, and it is opposed to any agreement that will undermine the rights of the Turkish Cypriots, or one that is not based on the political equality of the two sides, on two ``states'', on separate sovereignty, or on the guarantee system.

    [07] ACINCI CLAIMS PAPHOS BASE INAUGURATION IS GRAVE MISTAKE

    According to illegal Bayrak Radio (15.30 hours, 15/10/97) Communal Liberation Party [TKP] leader Mustafa Akinci has claimed that with the opening of the Paphos airport ``the Greek Cypriots have added a new error to the series of grave ones they have been committing up to now.''

    In a statement to illegal BRT [Bayrak Radio and television], Akinci said that Cyprus does to need such incidents, adding that nothing can be achieved in Cyprus throughout armament, the deployment of S-300 missiles, military exercises, and the transportation of Greek bases to Cyprus, as he put it.

    He remarked that rather than engaging in ``escalations'' the Greek Cypriot side should accept the deconfrontation measures as soon as possible. Akinci said that the Turkish military officials have accepted these measures and if the Greek Cypriot side also accepts them, the deconfrontation measures can be implemented immediately. Akinci added: ``Both sides have observed the benefits of the deconfrontation measures, which were partially implemented in 1989. This can be further expanded.''

    [08] PSEUDO - ASSEMBLY MEETING POSTPONED

    According to Kibris (16/10/07), Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash, CTP [Republican Turkish Party] leader Mehmet ali Talat, and TKP [Communal Liberation Party] leader Mustafa Akinci exchanged sharp words. The duel of words, provoked by Denktash's strong criticism of the opposition parties the other night, continued unabated. The opposition parties accused Denktash, who had charged the opposition leaders with ``lying,'' of ``turning attacks on the opposition into a habit.''

    As the tension between Denktash and the opposition rose, the pseudo- assembly's session on the Cyprus problem, scheduled for yesterday, was postponed indefinitely ``without any reason being provided.''

    A written statement by ``assembly speaker'' Hakki Atun said: ``The Republican Assembly's first extraordinary plenary session on the Cyprus problem that was to be held at 1000 on Thursday, 16 October 1997, has been postponed. The date of the next session will be announced separately.''

    It was upon Denktash's request that Atun had called the so-called assembly into session in the first place.

    [09] TURKEY TO BUY 70 POPEYE MISSILES FROM ISRAEL

    According to daily Cumhuriyet (14/10/97), the Turkish government has established the strategy it will adopt to counter the reaction the Turkish Armed Forces created in the Arab world by strengthening their cooperation with Israel, particularly when the REFAHYOL [Welfare Party-True Path Party] administration was in power.

    However, Turkey is determined to maintain the close relations it established with Israel white it moves to put this strategy into effect. In view of that, it has decided to urgently buy missiles from that country to use against the S-300 missiles the Greek Cypriot side will acquire from Russia.

    Turkey has decided to buy Israel's Popeye missiles. The missiles, which have a range of more than 100 km, can be launched from aircraft against missile targets on the ground. Turkey has held talks with the Israeli officials on the joint production of the missiles. It decided to urgently buy 70 of the missiles now. The missiles will be mounted on the F-4 planes, which will be modernised by Israel.

    Lieutenant Annon Lipkin Shahak, Chief of Israel's General Staff, arrived in Ankara recently . He held talks with the Turkish officials on the sale of the missiles.

    Political sources have said that the publicity that was given to military relations between Turkey and Israel in the past urged Syria, Iran, and Iraq to reconcile their differences and noted that the way the cooperation between Turkey and Israel has been publicized has made Ankara very uneasy, because it has created an opportunity for Arab countries to join forces against Turkey.

    However, they also noted that Turkey will maintain its cooperation with Israel, regardless of the reaction of Iran and Syria.

    Turkey has informed Tel Aviv and the Arab countries that it is determined to maintain a multisided policy on the middle East peace process and its relations with Israel and the Arab world.

    In view of that, it has been reported that the decision on the date of the military exercises between Turkey, the United States, and Israel may be further postponed.

    [10] TURKEY' S MILITARY EXERCISES NOT POSTPONED

    According to daily SABAH (16/10/97) Ankara has adopted a chilled approach on US State Department spokesman James Rubin's statement some days ago that ``the military exercises organized by Greece and Turkey should be suspended'' and that ``the moratorium on [military flights] over Cyprus should be heeded.'' Replying to a question by the journalists after the Defence Industry Executive Council's meeting yesterday, Minister of National Defence Ismet Sezgin assessed the US call by saying ``we have military exercises planned for November. They have not been postponed. Plans have been made for military exercises early in November. They will be held.''

    Asked whether or not Turkey's F-16 planes will land in the occupied area during the exercises, he said: ``Whatever will be necessary at the time will be done.''

    The military exercises codenamed Determination-97 will be held in the Aegean Sea's international waters, the so-called TRNC territorial waters, and the Eastern Mediterranean.

    The military exercises codenamed Toros 97-2 will be held in the pseudostate and its so-called territorial waters and in the Eastern Mediterranean's international waters form 3 to 5 November.

    Minister of State Sucker Sinn Gurel has claimed that Turkey has neither drawn up a war game nor made an initiative against Greece to escalate the tension between the two countries. He alleged: ``If such an effort has been made by others, then we believe it is dangerous.''

    A journalist asked Gurel to comment on the Toros 97-2 exercises. He said Turkey's military exercises have been planned a long time ago and noted that the Toros 97-2 is one of them. Recalling that serious problems exist between Turkey and Greece, Gurel said that are not insolvable. He also noted that Turkey has informed Greece and all the other foreign countries that it wants to have the Aegean problems solved through talks.

    [11] TURKEY PREPARING FOR TOROS EXERCISES

    According to turkish daily Cumhuriyet (15/10/97) while it has been indicated that the date of the Toros exercises, originally planned for 1-8 November, may by advanced, attention has been drawn to the fact that Turkish warplanes will also land in the ``TRNC'' during the land, marine, and air exercises.

    A reply based on the ``eye for an eye'' approach will be made by Ankara to ``the Greek and Greek Cypriot policy of escalating the tension'' in Cyprus by holding the Nikiforos exercises, the paper claims.

    It has been learned that ships, frigates and landing craft belonging to the marine forces will visit the occupied ports of Cyprus and that Turkish warplanes will fly in the Cyprus air space and land in the occupied area. The Turkish occupation forces stationed in the pseudostate will also reportedly participate in the exercises.

    The paper also claims that 400 Russian and 40 Syrian soldiers have also participated in the Nikiforos exercises.

    [12] DEMIREL: DIPLOMACY SHOULD BE USED BEFORE ENTERING A WAR

    According to Turkish Daily News (16/10/97) Turkish President Suleyman Demirel said on Wednesday that the use of force was high on the list of options in protecting the national interest. Demirel who was speaking at the symposium of Contemporary Turkish Diplomacy: A process of 200 years, organized by the Foreign Ministry Strategic Research Centre, made this remark against the backdrop of tension between Turkey and Greece over Cyprus.

    Demirel, speaking at the symposium, said that before entering a war, the art of diplomacy should first be used. He said that patience was vital.

    He stated that within this concept they had decided in 1967 to intervene in Cyprus. The former U.S Secretary of State Cyrus Vance at that time asked Demirel what they hoped to achieve by this intervention. Vance gave him a promise that the desired results could be achieved by diplomacy and Demirel said that after that they gave up the idea of intervention but later failed to achieve results.

    Meanwhile Turkey's powerful military chief said concern about a possible clash was unfounded. ``We are dealing with the problem responsibly and in a coldblooded manner. There is no cause for concern,'' the SABAH daily quoted Turkey's top general Ismail Hakki Karadyi as saying.

    He claimed Turkey did not need to pick a fight with Greece because Ankara's numerical military superiority would make the result of any conflict a foregone conclusion.


    [B] COMMENTS AND EDITORIALS

    [13] TURKISH COLUMNIST VIEWS HOLBROOKE'S VISIT TO ANKARA

    Sami Kohen, writing Milliyet (15/10/97), views Holbrooke's visit to Ankara and says: ``When I asked Richard Holbrooke ` your visit came just in the heat of the crisis, is this a concidence?' , America's `super' special representative reacted thus: `Everybody is talking about a crisis. But I do not call it a crisis . Crises come and go in Cyprus. They come and go again and again. For that reason, it should not be dwelled on too much.'

    Before his departure from our country yesterday morning, we conversed with the famous diplomat, who just four months ago was given the mission by President Clinton to search for a Cyprus solution.

    Holbrooke's arrival in Ankara is interesting as far as timing goes. Asked `to what shall I attribute this visit?', the special representative replied:

    ` I had not yet made the acquaintance of Prime Minister Yilmaz and Deputy Prime Minister Ecevit. During our meeting in New York, Foreign Minister Cem advised me to visit Ankara. and I came mostly and truly to establish contact with and listen to the new administration. I believe that it is still too early for negotiations. I would not want to face a failure. That is why I did not come to Ankara to submit a plan or hold negotiations.'

    But it is difficult to believe that Holbrooke confined himself to merely `listening' during the single day 11-hour marathon talks, or that the timing of the visit was a mere coincidence with the present developments (considering that he was accompanied by such regional experts as Thomas Miller).

    During our conversation, the experienced diplomat made it felt through his sentences that he has indeed brought some views and messages to Ankara.

    One of the messages was a call to all sides to refrain from fomenting a crisis at this particular time, that is , to stop provoking each other. The things said in this direction by Holbrooke in Ankara will be repeated to the Greek leaders by Miller, who left for Athens yesterday''. And Kohen continues: ``Holbrooke actually tried to learn the Turkish leadership's thinking on the essence of the [Cyprus] problem. And, it appears that he was not very pleased with what he has learned, for the following is the view that the Turkish side has been trying to convey to him: There are two sovereign states in Cyprus. A solution should be based on that foundation. Besides, if the EU commences talks on Cyprus' membership, not only the Cyprus negotiations cannot continue but also the integration process between Turkey and the TRNC [Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus] will be speeded up. And, that would mean the dropping of a federal solution form the agenda.

    Whereas Holbrooke believes that the chances for a federal solution should be kept alive. Otherwise, there will be no need for the mission he has assumed. That is why, at this stage, he does not venture to go into an offensive and end up in failure. He prefers to wait. So much so that he is not even thinking of going to Cyprus at this stage.

    When TRNC Foreign and Defence Minister Taner Etkin came across him by chance at the airport and asked `when are you coming to our island?', Holbrooke confined himself to only saying: 'I am not thinking of coming for the time being. Denktash will be coming to Washington in two weeks, and I will meet him there.'

    Noting that `a full eight weeks remain before the EU summit,' Holbrooke is indicating that for the EU to commence membership talks with Cyprus `is inevitable.' The American diplomat told this to the Turkish officials in Ankara. He was, in his words, `disillusioned' with the reaction he got when he said: `It would be a mistake for the Turkish side to withdraw from the talks in such an eventuality. I cannot find a reason in it. Instead of preventing Cyprus' accession to the EU, it would be better for Turkey to undertake adjustments that would guarantee its own membership.'

    Describing himself as the closest friend of Turkey in the United states and stressing that the intensive efforts on his part played a role in Germany's recent change in policy towards Turkey regarding the EU, Hoobrooke went on to say that `I cannot understand why the Turkish leaders always carp about being misunderstood and isolated,' adding: `Turkey is an important country. That is how the United states sees it. It is wrong for the Turks to belittle their own strength.'

    Yet another message that Holbrooke gave in Ankara and repeated during our conversation is the folowing: `Advantage should be taken of the fact that Simitis is in power in Greece. Attention should be turned to the future, not to the past. The Turks and Greeks, even if they dislike each other, have to realise that they are obliged to live in peace. They should leave the present tensions behind and prepare themselves for the 21st century. That is what Dr. Adenauer and De Gaulle did after the war'.

    Yes, for now Holbrooke is not giving much importance to the present tension between Ankara and Athens, but how effective can such a message be under the present circumstances?'', Kohen concludes.


    From the Republic of Cyprus Press and Information Office (PIO) Server at http://www.pio.gov.cy/


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