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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Cypriot Press and Other Media, 99-01-26

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. 13/99 -- 26.1.1999

[A] NEWS ITEMS

  • [01] ECEVIT AND GEM TO PAY ILLEGAL VISIT TO THE OCCUPIED AREA
  • [02] DEMIREL INSISTS ON CONFEDERATION, SAYS "NO TURNING BACK"
  • [03] CHANGES IN TURKEY'S POLICY ON NATIONAL SECURITY INCLUDE CYPRUS
  • [04] HOLBROOKE'S CONFIDENCE - BUILDING MEASURES
  • [05] DENKTASH: "WE HAVE WATERED DOWN TURKEY'S EU MEMBERSHIP PRECONDITION"

  • [A] NEWS ITEMS

    [01] ECEVIT AND CEM TO PAY ILLEGAL VISIT TO THE OCCUPIED AREA

    According to KIBRIS (26.1.99) Turkish Prime Minister, Bulent Ecevit, who ordered the invasion of part of Cyprus in June 1974, is to pay an illegal visit to the occupied area at the head of a large delegation which will include Foreign Minister Ismail Cem.

    The programme of the visit, says the paper, is jointly prepared by Ankara and the occupied area.

    After Ecevit's visit to the occupied area, Eroglu, Akinci and Ertugruloglu will pay a visit to Ankara.

    KIBRIS reports that some "senior bureaucrats" will take part in Eroglu's visit to Ankara, during which the economic bottleneck in the occupied area's economy and the latest developments in the Cyprus problem will be discussed.

    Quoting reliable sources in the occupied area, KIBRIS says that during these contacts the confederation thesis will be discussed. (MY)

    [02] DEMIREL INSISTS ON CONFEDERATION, SAYS "NO TURNING BACK"

    TRT Television Network (19:30 hours, 24.1.99) broadcast a live interview with Turkish President Suleyman Demirel by Kurtul Altug on the 'Political Pulse' program. Referring to foreign policy issues, Demirel also mentioned Cyprus and said:

    "Another foreign issue is, naturally, Cyprus. On the Cyprus issue, Turkey has well presented its policy. Everyone should know that there is no turning back in the Cyprus issue. The Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) exists. Its recognition and the terms in which it might coexist with the south Greek Cypriot state in another issue".

    Asked to clarify if this means a confederation, Demirel replied:

    "This concept has to be defined".

    And to the presenter's comment "as two separate states", Demirel said:

    "This is what the honourable Denktash has said. This is what our 55th and 56th governments have endorsed. This is the policy adopted by the Turkish state. This policy will continue".

    [03] CHANGES IN TURKEY'S POLICY ON NATIONAL SECURITY INCLUDE CYPRUS

    According to daily Hurriyet (14.1.99), parallel to the recent domestic and foreign developments, Turkey is reassessing its priorities and developments that pose a threat to it.

    According to a recent research, which will be added to the Special and Main Policy Document on National Security, combating the economic crisis and organized crime and the problem of improving Turkey's image abroad will, alongside terrorism and reactionism, be included among the country's vital priorities.

    A research under the heading "Priorities and Threats That Must Be Carefully Handled" by various military and diplomatic centres outlined five issues as Turkey's main problems. They are the economic crisis, organized crime, Turkey's image abroad, reactionism, and terrorism.

    Reliable sources have informed Hurriyet that they will be on the National Security Council's agenda in January. In addition to reactionism and terrorism, the three new issues will be added to the Special and Main Policy Document on National Security.

    A consensus was reached at the meeting that was held at the General Staff last month to the effect that the economic crisis is the most important of the five problems that need to be quickly solved. The military commanders said the reasons for the crisis must be studied.

    The commanders urged all the State cadres to maintain a sensitive approach in the struggle against the economic crisis, and noted that the government must make a strenuous effort to draw up the new budget and have the parliament enact the Law on Banking Procedures.

    Meanwhile, an agreement was reached to restructure the Group for Combating High Inflation, which has existed within the General Staff's framework for two years. It will then be known as the Economic Working Group.

    Meanwhile, Turkey's strategy on the Cyprus problem, as outlined in the Special and Main Policy Document on National Security, has been changed. The document now stresses that the Cyprus problem can be solved through the establishment of a confederation and notes that the new approach must be completely supported.

    The assessment made at the meeting indicated that the police have waged a successful struggle against the illegal gangs.

    The meeting reiterated that the military forces will not make concessions in their struggle against reactionism and that the Workers Party of Kurdistan's armed operations are coming to an end. The need to be alert to the initiatives made by the European countries to place the Kurdish problem on international platforms was emphasized.

    [04] HOLBROOKE'S CONFIDENCE - BUILDING MEASURES

    According to daily Sabah (25.1.99), US diplomat Richard Holbrooke has reportedly made an initiative to have Turkey and Greece hold a summit to defuse the tension in the Aegean.

    Turkish, Turkish Cypriot, Greek, and Greek Cypriot officials will reportedly participate in the meeting that will be held in Athens in February. The participants will focus on confidence-building measures during their talks. Reports said that Holbrooke's package of confidence- building measures includes many proposals that conflict with Greek interests.

    The Greek media organs have described the package as a "strange" initiative. It called for the teaching of Turkish in the Greek Cypriot schools and the revision of the Greek Cypriot history books.

    The package also called for initiatives to settle the problems related to the island's infrastructure, such as the supply of water, the signing of an agreement to establish communications between the two sides through the cellular telephone networks, and the sale of dairy products.

    [05] DENKTASH: "WE HAVE WATERED DOWN TURKEY'S EU MEMBERSHIP PRECONDITION"

    Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktash in a two-instalment exclusive interview to MILLIYET'S (25 and 26.1.99) correspondent Sahin Alpay reiterated his known views on the Cyprus problem and on recognition of his pseudostate.

    Following are some excerpts of the interview:

    "Question: Let us suppose that the European Union really wants to solve the Cyprus problem. And let us suppose that Brussels has decided to carry put parallel talks that it is now carrying out with the Greek Cypriot Administration, regarding simultaneous accession to the European Union, within the process of unification of the north and south Cyprus under a confederation. How would you view such an initiative?

    Denktash: We will think, discuss, argue and negotiate. When Brussels says we are ready to hold parallel talks with you, what does it want to say from the point of view of status? We will ask that. They are of the opinion that they are negotiating with the whole of Cyprus. Will they give up that attitude? Will they say, we will start separate negotiations with the Greek and Turkish Cypriot sides?

    Question: I suppose so. In that case will you consider this an overture leading to settlement?

    Denktash: This is an overture. But, if Turkey does not enter into the EU, we will not enter, because against the Greek-Greek Cypriot union, we will be alone as a Turkish community.

    Question: On 31 August, 1998 together with the Turkish Foreign Minister Ismail Cem you made the confederation proposal. Together with this proposal, will it be a wrong comment (to say) that you do not any more consider Turkey's EU membership as a condition for the TRNC's EU membership?

    Denktash: No, may be it is true. However, there is this condition. Turkey's rights under the 1960 Treaties will continue to be valid, because the reason behind the Greek Cypriot application for EU membership is to render null and void the rights given to Turkey and Greece under the 1960 Treaties. They will be united with Greece through the EU. Turkey will remain completely outside. For this reason we have put forward the condition that the rights given to Turkey under the 1960 Treaties will continue to be valid. And in the meantime we have said that Turkey should be able to benefit from the same rights that are given to Greece under the EU membership.

    Question: But this does not require Turkey's membership to the EU, for your EU membership?

    Denktash: No, in this way we have watered down that condition.

    Question: You say that with these conditions we can negotiate EU membership...

    Denktash: Our entry will be accepted as confederation and they will consider it as equal to that of the Greek Cypriots.

    Question: Well, in order to start negotiations, will you put forward a condition that first they must necognize you?

    Denktash: At least they have to accept that the Greek Cypriots do not represent the whole of Cyprus. In the resolution it is said: 'The sole negotiator is the Government of Cyprus'. They say: 'Let us talk to you, within the Cyprus government, as a community leader', and in their resolutions they have underlined the aim of their talking with us. They will talk to us to discuss the benefits the Turkish Cypriot community will get by entering the EU... We say that, first accept that the application made by the Greek Cypriots is for the Greek Cypriots, and not for the whole of Cyprus. Then a giant step will have been taken.

    Question: That is, you are not putting forward TRNC's official recognition by the EU as a state?

    Denktash: What we want is, when they say Cyprus Republic, not to include us. So we want them to concede that we are a separate entity in the north. We have to be treated under equal conditions. And at the end the establishment of confederation and not federation should be put on sound grounds.

    (Question and answer on why the confederation proposal was not included in the so-called coalition "government's" programme omitted).

    Denktash: Esteemed Eroglu says that "the Greek Cypriot side has rejected confederation, therefore it is not necessary to keep it on the agenda, and it has been proposed for a temporary period". It is those who put forward this confederation idea that should have to decide jointly whether this period has run out or not. In a protocol concluded with a party, the Communal Liberation Party, which does not want confederation at all, it should not have been said: 'Time is out, so we will talk something else'.

    As a negotiator, I have to answer the following question put by diplomats:

    'How could you impose on us or on the Greek Cypriots a formula which you are unable to make your government accept, or mention?' When they say this I have no answer to give them. For this reason we have to solve this problem between us.

    (Passage omitted).

    Question: Are you going to be a presidential candidate?

    Denktash: (Rather) early made statements either become an obstacle or choke one's throat. Prior to the last elections I said I would not be a candidate. But following the demands from my people and Turkey, I was forced to put forward my candidacy. Against the six candidates I won the elections. This time as well, if there is a message to be given to my people and there is no other person than me to convey this message, then I will consider. However, if there is no message to be conveyed or there is a candidate that I can support, then it is my right as well to have a rest.

    Question: In that case you have yet to decide, but you may be a candidate?

    Denktash: No, I haven't decided yet but I might be. I have said: 'Until I decide otherwise you should consider me a candidate'.

    Question: If you decide to be a candidate for which mission will you do it?

    Denktash: I will do it if I see that a condition exists for the settlement of the Cyprus problem in line with the way I believe and the way Turkey supports. Otherwise, if this situation continues forever, then anybody can take my place and perform his national duty.

    (Paragraph on Richard Holbrooke's effort to bring together Turkish and Greek Cypriot businessmen is omitted. Denktash considers this not a useful method to solve the Cyprus problem).

    Question: How do you consider the latest UN Security Council resolution on Cyprus regarding the demilitarization of the island?

    Denktash: Together with Turkey we have said 'The missiles can not be a bargaining chip' and we stick to that. It seems that the Greek Cypriots have bargained the missiles with the Americans, the British and the UN and they secured this resolution from the UN. We say that this resolution is the result of a bargain carried out in our absence. If the purchasing of arms continues in Cyprus, this is done by the Greek Cypriot side. Let them start reducing their unnecessary and, for whatever amount they buy, useless weapons and let us see their good will and then we can think about it". (MY)


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


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