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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Cypriot Press and Other Media, 99-05-17

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. 82/99 -- 15-16-17

/5/99

[A] NEWS ITEMS

  • [01] Gurel explains Turkish stand on ``TRNC'' security.
  • [02] Turkey´s Religious Affairs Director visiting pseudostate.
  • [03] Human rights in Turkey.
  • [04] Erbakan´s recorded statement said to attack Ataturk.
  • [05] Pseudo-minister visits London, attends dinner at British Parliament.
  • [06] Akinci rejects participation in EU accession talks prior to settlement.
  • [07] Alevites celebrate ``Asure Day''.
  • [08] Citrus production declining.
  • [09] Foreign journalists to visit occupied area.
  • [B] COMMENTS AND EDITORIALS

  • [10] Turkish writer on Greek motives over Platia Islet.

  • [A] NEWS ITEMS

    [01] Gurel explains Turkish stand on ``TRNC'' security

    Anatolia Agency (11:47 hours, 15.5.99) reports that Sukru Sina Gurel, the Turkish State Minister, said on Saturday that any solution formula which does not take Turkish Cypriot´s security and welfare under guarantee is unacceptable for Turkey.

    Gurel responded the questions of journalists at the opening ceremony of the ``First Turkish Cypriot Fair'' which was organized by the Turkish Cypriot Development Platform in Ankara.

    When reminded the news reports claiming that the Cyprus question was taken into agenda of the G-8, Gurel noted, ``creating new so-called sides except for the concerned ones and making the problem more complicated, will not ease efforts aiming at finding a solution to the question. To this end, such a development will not be welcomed by Turkey.''

    Responding to a question about allegations claiming that Britain prepares a constitution for Cyprus, Gurel stressed, ``third sides launched initiatives many times to prepare several texts and to impose these models on concerned sides. A reminiscent initiative will also be fruitless. Because those who will decide about the future of Cyprus, are the Turkish Cypriots, the Greek Cypriots, Turkey and other concerned sides. Such initiatives, therefore, are useless''.

    [02] Turkey´s Religious Affairs Director visiting pseudostate

    According to Anatolia Agency (17:14 hours, 13.5.99) Mehmet Nuri Yilmaz, the Chairman of Turkey´s Religious Affairs Department, arrived on Thursday in the occupied area.

    Yilmaz, who came to the occupied area to open the new mosque in occupied Kyrenia, had separate meetings with Ertugrul Hasipoglu, the ``speaker'' of the pseudo-assembly and Dervis Eroglu, the so-called prime minister.

    Noting that there are many churches on Cyprus, Yilmaz said ``there is no need for that much churches, we have to increase the number of mosques.''

    Hasipoglu, said in his part that Turkish Cypriots have been loyal to spiritual values and maintained their Turkish and muslim identity since 1571.

    Noting that there is a movement against moslems in the world like in Bosnia and Kosovo, Hasipoglu said that they were sorry about the invitation of Cyprus President Glafcos Clerides by Iran for a meeting.

    [03] Human rights in Turkey

    Turkish Daily News (12.5.99) says that the Organization of Human Rights and Solidarity for Oppressed People (MAZLUM-DER) issued a report evaluating human rights in Turkey for the month of April.

    According to MAZLUM-DER, Turkey´s agenda in April was determined by the general and local elections held on April 18.

    Those in power expressed their satisfaction with the high participation in the eagerly awaited elections and the peaceful atmosphere in which they were held.

    However, according to MAZLUM-DER, the April 18 elections were not held in peace.

    MAZLUM-DER asserted that in some parts of Turkey, the election campaign proceeded under an atmosphere of oppression and massive human rights violations. In the run-up to the elections, a suit was filed for the closure of the Virtue Party (FP) and several suits were filed against party administrators. This alone was enough to generate controversy in the April 18 elections, showing that parties and voters alike were participating in elections under pressure. Moreover, there were claims of several instances of elections fraud.

    The pressure experienced by voters living in villages and towns in the Southeast explains everything. These pressures increased towards the elections when a majority of voters were threatened not to vote for HADEP (Pro-Kurdish Democracy Party). In addition, those areas that supported HADEP in the elections were later punished by having illegal fines levied against them.

    A majority of the 7,762 people who were taken under custody in March were members of HADEP and a large majority of the 4,757 taken into custody in April were members of HADEP, according to a MAZLUM-DER statement.

    During the first two weeks in April, when election campaigns intensified, 20 attacks were carried out on several election offices in which one person was killed, 25 injured and 758 people taken into custody. A majority of these attacks occurred on political party headquarters who were ``unwanted.''

    ``As a result of all these attacks, which managed to exclude through scare tactics many such parties, the new parliament was formed'', the report read. ``The new parliament in their first assembly meeting was a disgraceful example in terms of human rights and freedoms. The party chairman and prime minister (Bulent Ecevit) called Parliament the `state´s nobel institution´ at the first General Assembly meeting, which clearly proves that Turkey´s deputies do not want to be seen as representatives of the public but as state bureaucrats''.

    Moreover, it stated that April experienced a decrease in attacks aimed at civilians. ``For example, in the 119 events which occurred in March, 22 people lost their lives and 284 were injured, whereas in April, only 24 incidents occurred in which 13 people died and 53 were injured. A similar decrease can also be observed in freedom of the press. In March, 299 press organizations were closed and their publications prohibited, whereas in April this number dropped to 27.

    However, in April, 46 journalists were dismissed. It is easy to come to the conclusion that this crucial and surprising violation arose due to unsavoury relations between the Turkish press and the power circles''.

    [04] Erbakan´s recorded statement said to attack Ataturk

    Turkish daily RADIKAL (11.5.99) reports that the videotape that the now defunct Welfare Party (RP) prepared for distribution in the Islamic countries in 1995 gives an indication of the policies that the party rejected when it was in power. The videotape, named the ``Crescent of Istanbul'', quotes RP Leader Necmettin Erbakan as saying that ``The republic and Ataturk have alienated Turkey from Islam. The RP´s objective is to draw Turkey closer to the Islamic world''.

    Journalist Steve Emerson has said that the videotape, which was prepared by the Islamic Media Service, was aimed at furthering the propaganda activities of the RP. Its main theme is that a ``state of war'' exists between the Islamic and non-Islamic peoples in Turkey and the Middle East.

    The recording starts with clips of a meeting among Necmettin Erbakan, the former Mayor of Istanbul Tayyip Erdogan, and Channouchi, an Islamic thinker. The tape shows several scenes from the assassination of (Egyptian) President Anwar al-Sadat by the fundamentalist Islamic Jihad organization in 1981.

    Half of the videotape, which often carries scenes from the Palestinian Indifadah, is in Arabic, but Erbakan´s interview is in Turkish. He frequently claims that international Zionism and Imperialism have tried to alienate the Turks from Islam during the past 200 years and argues that the objective of the RP is to reverse that trend.

    RADIKAL obtained the videotape from Steve Emerson, who focuses on the Islamic groups in the United States and the RP links there. The recording quotes Erbakan as saying that ``Our party attaches particular importance to the problem of Palestine. The problem can be solved in two stages''. He explains them as follows:

    ``1. Withdrawal of the Jews from the occupied lands.

    [02] Eviction of the State of Israel from the Islamic land''.

    Although Erbakan described Israel as the representative of international Zionism, he did not refrain from signing a trade agreement with it shortly after he came to power. The videotape quotes him as saying that the 1974 invasion operation in Cyprus was realized as a result of his party´s initiatives, claiming that their objective is to establish economic and military alliances and an organization similar to the IMF to unite the Islamic countries.

    Commenting on the videotape, Emerson said that it might be a message to the Turkish Armed Forces, which defend secularism against the strengthening of the Islamic trend.

    [05] Pseudo-minister visits London, attends dinner at British Parliament

    KIBRIS (15.5.99) reports that the so-called health and environment minister of the pseudostate, Gulsen Bozkurt, left the occupied area yesterday for London to take part in various activities.

    After London Bozkurt will visit Hungary.

    In the meantime, KIBRIS´s (17.5.99) London correspondent Serhat Incirli reports that the so-called health and environment minister, Gulsen Bozkurt, has attended a dinner at the British Parliament under her ``official'' title.

    Incirli claims that this was the first time that a ``TRNC official'' attended a dinner at the British Parliament under her ``official title''.

    The dinner was organized by the British Conservative MP David Amers and the deputy chairman of the Turkish Association in the same party, businessman Mehmet Ali Salih.

    (MY)

    [06] Akinci rejects participation in EU accession talks prior to settlement

    According to ORTAM (17.5.99) the so-called state minister and deputy prime minister of the pseudostate, Communal Liberation Party leader Mustafa Akinci, speaking during his party´s regional congress and in reply to Greek alternate Foreign Minister Yiannos Kranidiotis´s call to Turkish Cypriots to attend the EU accession talks, said: `Not only the Greek Cypriots but Turkish Cypriots as well have the right of say in Cyprus. It is out of question for us to attend the accession talks under the Cyprus government umbrella, prior to reaching a political settlement in Cyprus.''

    [07] Alevites celebrate ``Asure Day''

    KIBRIS (17.5.99) reports that Alevites living in the occupied area have celebrated the ``Asure Day''.

    The celebrations were organised by ``The Association for Promoting and Research of the Culture of Haci Bektash - i Veli''.

    KIBRIS says that thousands of people attended the ``Asure Day'' celebrations. Among the guests was Dervish Eroglu.

    The guest of honour was former Republican People´s Party deputy Arif Sag who is an Alevite.

    The association was established in 1993 in the occupied area. (MY)

    [08] Citrus production declining

    AVRUPA (16.5.99) publishes a report by a member of the ``CYPFRUVEX'' executive committee, Onder Guzen, about the citrus groves in the occupied area.

    Guzen says that in the past 180 thousand tons of citrus were produced in the occupied area, while today this figure is down to 80 thousand.

    Moreover, in the past the total area of citrus groves were 70 thousand donums, while today only 30 thousand donums of citrus groves have been left.

    The AVRUPA report appears under the banner headlines ``we have destroyed the Yellow Gold of North Cyprus''.

    (MY)

    [09] Foreign journalists to visit occupied area

    KIBRIS (15:5.99) reports that Romanian and Mongolian journalists are to arrive in the occupied area tomorrow.

    The visiting journalists will stay in the occupied area until 23 May. During their stay they will have contacts and visit various places. (MY)


    [B] COMMENTS AND EDITORIALS

    [10] Turkish writer on Greek motives over Platia Islet

    Columnist Ferai Tinc, writing in HURRIYET (Internet version, 16.5.99), claims: ``Waters have once again been muddied because of an islet. Although Turkey has not said anything explicit about whether Plantia is part of the region with disputed sovereignty, the opening of this island, whose ownership is uncertain, to settlement has created much unease.

    Turkey has never named the Aegean island, islets, and rocks whose sovereignty is disputed. In contrast, the Athens government always knew which ones they were and in recent years declared `the Aegean as a Greek domain´.

    We saw in the Kardak affair that efforts to take possession of such territories not just by Greece but also by Turkey may lead to problems.

    This was seen not only by Turkey and Greece but also by Washington. As a result, Washington assumed a very critical responsibility at that time. It pledged to guarantee that the status quo in the Aegean will not change.

    That means that Washington is obligated to intervene in the event of any attempt to change that status quo.

    So why now?

    Greece´s decision to open Platia to settlement at this critical time for stability in the Balkans brings to mind the question: `Why now?´

    To see the answer we need to examine Greece´s current situation and the agenda of the region in the coming days.''

    Referring to the Abdullah Ocalan affair and Greece´s posture in the Kosovo war, Tinc continues:

    ``Although no one has pursued this matter for some time, the results of Washington´s inquiry in Greece with regard to allegations that Greek officials leaked NATO secrets to Russia have not yet been made public.

    Thus far no consensus has been reached in Washington about the results of this investigation, but this scandal hangs over Athens like Damocles´s sword.

    Further, Greece´s recent outbursts have shown that it has a greater potential to oppose NATO than to act as a NATO member.

    Against this troubled background Greece faces a very intense foreign policy agenda in the coming days.

    The Kosovo war is intensifying, and allies are being asked to increase their contributions. In contrast, Greece has not even opened its air space to NATO aeroplanes.

    Washington wants to put the Cyprus problem on the table under the aegis of the G-8. It is clear that not only Turkey but also Greece will come under pressure.

    It is evident that both Turkey and Cyprus will be on the agenda of the EU and that Greece will be asked to make concessions.

    When all these are taken into account, is it not obvious why the issue of sovereignty in the Aegean is being escalated now?''


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


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