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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Cypriot Press and Other Media, 97-10-20

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 <http://www.pio.gov.cy/>


TURKISH CYPRIOT PRESS AND OTHER MEDIA

No. 194/97 18-19-20/10/97

[A] NEWS ITEMS

  • [01] DENKTASH ``SICK'' OF WORLD'S ``IMMORAL STAND'' ON CYPRUS ISSUE
  • [02] TALAT RETURNS FORM TURKEY, ISSUES STATEMENT ON TALKS
  • [03] ETKIN SAYS WAITING PERIOD UNDER WAY, INTEGRATION POSSIBLE
  • [04] DENKTASH CALLS FOR RECOGNITION OF TURKEY'S RIGHTS IN CYPRUS
  • [05] RP THREATENS AGAINST TESTING TURKEY'S TOLERANCE ON CYPRUS ISSUE
  • [06] ``ASSEMBLY'' SESSION PUT OFF UNTIL DENKTASH RETURNS FROM U.S
  • [07] OYMEN ON CYPRUS, EU, RUSSIA
  • [08] TURKISH CYPRIOTS INSIST ON CLAIM OF OCCUPIED VAROSHA LAND OWNERSHIP
  • [B] COMMENTS AND EDITORIALS

  • [09] DAILY URGES TURKEY TO REVIEW CYPRUS POSITION
  • [10] CONFLICT ON TURKEY'S CYPRUS POLICY VIEWED

  • [A] NEWS ITEMS

    [01] DENKTASH ``SICK'' OF WORLD'S ``IMMORAL STAND'' ON CYPRUS ISSUE

    According to (2100 hours, 17/10/97) Rauf Denktash has expressed his anger claiming: ``The immoral stand adopted by the world with regard to the Cyprus issue is making me sick.''

    During a meeting with a delegation of businessmen from the Trabzon Chamber of Commerce and Trade, Dentkash claimed that the Greek Cypriots are opposed to the principles of sovereignty and equality as a result of the support they are receiving from the world. Alleging that the world has never adopted ``such an immoral and unfair stand toward such a just cause'', Denktash added: ``I am repelled by this situation.''

    In reply to a question with regard to his health, Denktash said: ``According to what the doctors say, I have dropped down from 100 horsepower to 70 horsepower; however, I am still expending energy equal to 100 horsepower.''

    [02] TALAT RETURNS FORM TURKEY, ISSUES STATEMENT ON TALKS

    According to illegal Bayrak (1530 hours, 17/10/97) Republican Turkish Party [CTP] leader Mehmet Ali Talat has returned to the occupied area after concluding his contacts in Ankara. Within the framework of his contacts, Talat met with Turkish Foreign Minister Ismail Cem and Republican People's Party leader Deniz Baykal.

    According to a statement issued by the CTP press bureau, the Cyprus issue and the CTP's European visit were discussed at the meetings.

    Stressing to Cem and Baykal the importance of having the Turkish Cypriot community participate in the EU membership talks as an equal political partner, Talat added that a suitable procedure should be adopted. Proposing that this procedure be adopted through negotiations between the leaders, Talat added: ``The federal republic that will be established must clearly grant the Turkish Cypriots political equality, and this should be reflected in the EU membership talks. This is imperative if favourable results are to be obtained.''

    [03] ETKIN SAYS WAITING PERIOD UNDER WAY, INTEGRATION POSSIBLE

    According to illegal Bayrak Radio (1530 hours, 19/10/97) Taner Etkin, ``foreign affairs and defence minister,'' has said that Turkey is the Turkish Cypriots' only guarantee. Etkin, who is in Antalya to participate in a special program on Antalya ETV, assessed the latest developments on the Cyprus issue during a news conference.

    Explaining that a waiting period has begun, Etkin added: ``We are waiting for the final decision of the EU Council of Ministers in December. The Turkish Cypriot side will have to take the necessary steps in the event that the Greek Cypriot proposals are accepted.'' He added: "We can integrate with Turkey should this be considered a possible solution. Integration in the economic and political area may be a possibility.''

    [04] DENKTASH CALLS FOR RECOGNITION OF TURKEY'S RIGHTS IN CYPRUS

    According to illegal Bayrak Radio (0500 hours, 19/10/97), Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash inaugurated a store in occupied Kyrenia last Saturday evening and replied to reporters questions. He said that for an agreement to be reached in Cyprus, the world must understand that Turkey cannot renounce its contractual rights on the island. Pointing out that the framework that granted rights to Turkey and Greece over the island was drawn with the 1960 agreements, Denktash said that ``under no circumstances will Turkey renounce these geopolitical rights.''

    Calling on Britain and the United States to see the realities, Denktash alleged that the problem cannot be solved by joining the EU. He claimed that if a solution is to be reached in Cyprus, one must accept that Turkey cannot renounce the 1960 agreements.

    [05] RP THREATENS AGAINST TESTING TURKEY'S TOLERANCE ON CYPRUS ISSUE

    According to TRT (1700 hours, 17/10/97) Turkey's Welfare Party [RP] issued a threat with regard to the Cyprus issue: ``Let no one test or exploit Turkey's patience and tolerance. They will be defeated by our fury.''

    In a news conference at Turkish parliament, RP deputy leader Abdulkadir Aksu said claimed ``the moves undertaken by the Greeks and the Greek Cypriots, at a time when Turkey's sensitivity in this regard is crystal- clear, constitute total madness.''

    ``The whole world knows that we are a powerful country, including our state, our nation, and our army. If anyone has any doubt with regard to the greatness of this power, if anyone has failed to comprehend this power until now, Turkey is ready to explain this, in a way that will never be forgotten again'', Aksu said.

    [06] ``ASSEMBLY'' SESSION PUT OFF UNTIL DENKTASH RETURNS FROM U.S

    According to illegal Bayrak Radio (1030 hours, 17/10/97) the session of the so-called assembly at which the Cyprus issue will be assessed has been postponed until after Rauf Denktash's visit to the United States.

    In a statement issued to illegal BRT [Bayrak Radio and Television] ``assembly speaker'' Hakki Atun said that Denktash has intense work awaiting him prior to his visit to the United States and that, for this reason the session has been postponed until after visit so that he will not be override.

    Denktash will go to Washington on 23 October as the guest of the Turkish associations in the United States.

    [07] OYMEN ON CYPRUS, EU, RUSSIA

    Kanal 7 Television (19.30 hours, 16/10/97) broadcast a recorded interview with Onur Oymen, Turkey's permanent representative to NATO, by Ilnur Cevik on the ``Reflections From the World'' program.

    To a question on Turkey's EU membership, Oymen, inder alia, said:

    `` The EU was not our ultimate goal. We used to refer to it as a bus stop, as an intermediary station. Turkey's goal was to advance toward full EU membership. If you will recall, while our membership was not even mentioned about a year or two ago, it has now become one of the most important items of the European agenda. Following the recent visit our prime minister made to Germany, I believe that the impression that Germany is against Turkey's membership has been effaced. The public was informed that this impression was erroneous. We can say that the political obstacles to the Turkish goal of full membership have been removed. What will happen from now on? We are now expecting an agreement for Turkey to become the 12 th candidate country. Then there are internal and external balances regarding Cyprus. I will not go into the details. Turkey is, however, showing great sensitivity with regards to all these issues. This desire for full membership should not be presented as an obsession to the public. This is a goal that Turkey kept on its agenda for over 30 years now. Every effort has been, is being, and will be exerted to attain that goal.''

    To a question on the Cyprus problem and Greek - Turkish relations, Oymen, inter alia, claimed: ``I believe we must regard these matters with a level- headed attitude. Our Western European friends occasionally announce to the public that there are certain difficulties and obstacles with regard to our full membership in the EU. There are three elements in question here. One of them is human rights, the other Turkish-Greek relations, and the third is Cyprus.

    If we analyze this carefully, we realize that the human rights issue is a rule that is valid for all the European countries.

    If Turkey has a shortcoming in this regard, it is our problem to resolve it. This is in our hands. It is within the powers of the Turkish parliament, the Turkish government, the Turkish people, and all of Turkey's other organizations. Moreover, Turkey has displayed a will in this regard. Turkey has unequivocally displayed the will to promote human rights.

    The other two matters, however, are different in nature. Neither of these issues are ones that can be solved through Turkey's efforts alone. This matter cannot be solved on the basis of Turkey's efforts alone, unless the other sides exert sufficient efforts as well. On several occasions, our Foreign Ministry declared that it is not possible to set Cyprus and Turkish -Greek relations as a precondition for EU membership.

    It is difficult to conceive that Turkey is unable to start membership negotiations, but the Greek Cypriot sector is able to engage in such negotiations although the Cyprus problem has not been solved. As you know, we have objections in this regard based on agreements, but this is their view. In other words, Cyprus is an obstacle for Turkey, but not for the Greek Cypriots. It is very difficult to accept this.''

    In reply to question on the S-300 missiles and Russia, Oymen said: ``Our statesmen announced our views on this subject sufficiently clearly to the public. I do not want to repeat them. I would only like to mention that Cyprus' geographic position is included in many countries' sphere of interest. Many countries take an interest in Cyprus because of its strategic location in the eastern Mediterranean. First and foremost, it concerns Turkey's security. We are naturally interested in Cyprus in terms of protecting the lives of our kinsmen there and in terms of our rights and commitments deriving from agreements. However, we are also interested in Cyprus in terms of Turkey's fundamental security interests.

    When we take a look at the picture, we see that the 1960 agreements which created the Cyprus state established a balance between Turkey and Greece in connection with Cyprus. We do not want this balance to be upset. The interest displayed by other countries in Cyprus is clear. Turning Cyprus into an unsinkable missile carrying ship runs counter to the basic interests of not only Turkey, but of many other countries as well: and everyone is aware of this. Therefore, not only Turkey, but also other countries, all the Western countries, opposed the deployment of these missiles. They stated that this is a wrong approach.

    The public has been sufficiently informed on the issue of what measures Turkey will adopt in the event that the missiles are deployed. How will this issue affect Turkish- Russian relations? Turkish -Russian relations have already been tested by history. These two countries were at war with each other 13 times in the past. For this reason, both countries learned form their past experiences and realized over the past 70 years that living in peace will contribute to their mutual interests. Consequently, both Russia and Turkey have displayed extreme care in their relations. This policy was adopted during the period of Ataturk and has been carefully pursued ever since. Thus, we expect the current Russian Administration to display the same extreme care shown by Turkey and former Russian Administrations in the past. Moreover, we believe that having good relations with Turkey will serve Russia's interests as well.''

    [08] TURKISH CYPRIOTS INSIST ON CLAIM OF OCCUPIED VAROSHA LAND OWNERSHIP

    According to HALKIN SESI (20.10.97), so-called documents that claim that nearly 70% of the occupied Varosha is Turkish-owned land and property will be submitted to the so-called Supreme Administrative Court of the pseudostate today.

    HALKIN SESI alleges that according to the recovered historic documents there is clear evidence that 68% of the land in Varosha belongs to Turkish Cypriots.

    The Director General of the Vakif Administration Taner Dervish and the group of lawyers who prepared the file which is made up of thousands of documents and is collected in 16 box - files, will submit it today.


    [B] COMMENTS AND EDITORIALS

    [09] DAILY URGES TURKEY TO REVIEW CYPRUS POSITION

    Columnist Sami Kohen writing in Milliyet (18/10/97) under the title ``The other side of the coin'', says: ``The positions are explicit and final: The EU will begin full membership talks with South Cyprus next year; Turkey and the TRNC [Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus] will take a series of measures in response.

    As we pointed out yesterday, this situation may lead to a contentious and tense period in Cyprus, the Aegean and Turkey's relations with the EU.

    It is highly unlikely that the EU will retreat from its position. It committed itself to these talks a long time ago. Moreover, if there is any suggestion to `keep Cyprus out of the EU's enlargement process' during the EU's summit in December when the `enlargement' policy will be finalized, Greece would veto the start of membership talks with the other candidates (central and East European countries). Then the EU would face a serious crisis within itself. That is why the EU would face a serious crisis within itself. That is why the EU will evidently have to give the green light to South Cyprus.

    As for Turkey, the current Government is determined to put into effect the countermeasures that earlier were said would be taken if the EU starts talks with the Clerides administration. The TRNC leadership has taken a similarly determined position.

    Of course Government circles and the Foreign Ministry are evaluating the possible consequences of such a policy (unless there is a change of mind in the future about being more `flexible'). Those who support the current policy believe it would be best to implement the planned measures as soon as the EU sits at the negotiating table with South Cyprus. According to this view, the EU would commit a big mistake and injustice by discussing membership for Cyprus without waiting for a solution. If that happens, the climate for a federal solution would vanish, and the de facto `partition' would be consolidated. Since Turkey cannot leave the TRNC to its own means, it has to move toward integration. Such a move is also necessary for Turkey's own security. Consequently, the `Cyprus problem' would be solved by consolidating the existence of two separate states on the island and by Turkey's integration with the TRNC. Let South Cyprus enter the EU or merge with Greece.

    If matters reach that stage, there would indeed be `partition' in Cyprus, perhaps not officially but in practice. The dialogue between Turkish and Greek Cypriots would cease. The Green Line would become the `border' between the two `states'. Everyone would go his own way.

    At first glance, this picture may look attractive. It may be thought that this would solve the problem and would allow both Turkey and the TRNC to live in peace.

    However, it is useful to look at the other side of the coin. Such a `solution' would have certain serious drawbacks and would carry the seemingly solved Cyprus problem into a different and more dangerous domain.

    One of these drawbacks is the possibility that Turkey would suddenly confront Greece on a `Mediterranean front' (in addition to the Aegean and the Thrace). If Turkey integrates with the TRNC, Greece would want to establish itself in South Cyprus and consolidate its military presence there. The strategic and military drawbacks of this situation must be well calculated.

    It may be argued that the Greeks are already working on establishing a base in South Cyprus. True, but what is required is to stop that and prevent Turkey and Greece forming a new front on the island. In this analysis the `cause and effect' relationship must be identified correctly-- of course, without forgetting that the right course is to reduce tensions and not to escalate them.

    Let us also enumerate the other prospective drawbacks: Integration with the TRNC would make the Turkish Cypriot sector, whose demographics have already changed, more dependent on Ankara than it is now. If South Cyprus joins the EU on its own, the Union would have two instead of one Hellenic elements within its structure. The EU would not want to include Turkey in its `enlargement process' if Ankara pursues this policy. There would be continuous tension between Ankara and Athens, and the risk of a conflict would remain permanently high.

    All these possibilities suggest that the pros and cons of the formula ` if the EU negotiates with Clerides we cut off talks and implement integration' must be debated thoroughly.''

    [10] CONFLICT ON TURKEY'S CYPRUS POLICY VIEWED

    Mehmet Ali Birand, writing in Sabah (8/10/97) under the title ``There are differences of opinion on Cyprus policy'', inter alia says: ``There is some wavering on Turkey's Cyprus policy; there are some differences of opinion on the general approach.

    Questions have been raised about steps that need to be taken on the Cyprus issue without geopardizing the country's vital interests. These questions, whose scope does not extend to fundamentals and would not raise a crisis, are surfacing slowly.

    Bulent Ecevit controls the Cyprus policy.

    The Deputy Prime Minister formulates all policies and oversees their implementation.

    Ecevit has adopted a tough and rigid approach. Inparticular, he wants the TRNC [Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus] to withdraw from any settlement talks and step up its integration with Turkey if the Greek Cypriot administration and the EU start ` full membership negotiations.'

    The United states and Europe have argued that this approach `would hurt Turkey's fundamental interests.'

    They have pointed out that the EU took this decision early on and with Turkey's knowledge. They have said: ` You did not object then. Why are you reacting so sharply now?' EU Commissioner for Foreign Relations Hans Van Den Brook has said: ` You cannot prevent the negotiations from starting. Turkey cannot veto the EU's decisions.' When I talked to Van Den Brook last week he said that this posture by Ecevit has unnecessarily hardened the EU's position on both Turkey and Cyprus.

    He said: ` What are you trying to do? Do you want to eat grapes or do you want to beat up the vineyard keeper? If your goal is to destroy all prospects for a solution in Cyprus and merge with the TRNC and you are using the Cyprus-EU talks for this purpose, you are making a big mistake. You are entering into a quarrel with the EU when you have the opportunity to influence the solution in Cyprus in the direction you want.'

    The US negotiator on Cyprus, Richard Holbrooke, also shares this view. During his talks in Ankara he told all officials he met, including Ecevit, the following:

    `Tell us what you want, and we will try to help. You are not saying what you want exactly, and you are employing highly erroneous tactics. Instead of pulling the EU to your side you are confronting it. You are driving it to the side of the Greeks. You are not aware that Athens has anchored itself solidly to the EU.'

    Some Foreign Ministry officials also find Ecevit's approach `a little extreme.' For the moment, the other partners of the coalition are watching this policy, which has won the full support of Rauf Denktash, uneasily.

    President Suleyman Demirel has expressed his unease most explicitly. There has been a growing number of veiled messages on this issue from him.

    The President has conveyed frequent messages in his public and private statements. According to many people with close ties to Demirel, the President has criticized, though not openly, Ecevit's Cyprus policy as follows:

    1. Do not try to win everything without giving up anything.
    2. Do not create antagonism against the United states and do not insist on confronting it. Washington is the only capital that will support you if you are left on your own.
    3. Do not get into circumstances whereby you may go to war with Greece. Even if you defeat Greece, the consequences of such a war would ruin Turkey. We may even fall in the loser's position.
    4. Cyprus is the key to Turkey's relations with the EU. An erroneous policy may lead to the complete closure of the EU's gates.
    5. Do not stray form the federation thesis [in Cyprus].
    In Ankara, there is Ecevit's Cyprus policy. There are also the policies of Cankaya and the other coalition partners. I hope all these disparate approaches will meet at a common point in 1998.

    At this time everyone is viewing Cyprus in a different way.''


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


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