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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Cypriot Press and Other Media, 99-11-25

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. 216/99 -- 25.11.99

[A] NEWS ITEMS

  • [01] Denktash receives `full support/ for New York talks.
  • [02] Demirel on Cyprus; Warns against imposed solution that will lead to clashes.
  • [03] Turkey notes aim of proximity talks, support for Denktash.
  • [04] Turkish leaders convene to discuss Ocalan trial, Cyprus.
  • [05] Ahtisaari conditions for Turkey/s EU membership viewed.
  • [06] Turkish Cypriot dentists denied permission to cross.
  • [07] New bank.
  • [08] ``Universities''.
  • [B] COMMENTS AND EDITORIALS Columnist on Turkey/s concessions in Cyprus.


    [A] NEWS ITEMS

    [01] Denktash receives `full support/ for New York talks

    Anatolia Agency (18:38 hours, 24.11.99) reports that the extraordinary session of the pseudo-assembly, which convened upon the request of Rauf Denktash, ended with the four political parties represented there extending full support to Denktash and the New York talks.

    The political party leaders, who expressed their views on the issue, said that the ``TRNC'' will display goodwill and adopt a constructive stand at the talks, stressing that they expect the same good will from the Greek Cypriot side as well.

    In a statement he issued after the meeting, which was closed to the press, Denktash said that it was a very good meeting and that he briefed the ``deputies'' prior to New York. Noting that the ``deputies'' extended support for the talks, Denktash added: ``The whole question is how the Greek Cypriots will behave. We will go to New York in goodwill''.

    Dervis Eroglu, ``prime minister'' and National Unity Party leader, said that he addressed the meeting on behalf of the ``government'' and the party leaders on behalf of their ``assembly groups''. Eroglu explained that they are participating at the indirect talks in order to prepare the grounds and that going to New York constituted a significant and meaningful step. Noting that the Cyprus ``realities'' should be taken into consideration when the grounds for direct talks are being laid, Eroglu added: ``We are in favour for talks that do not disregard the realities.''

    Eroglu continued: ``We will be the side, which will display goodwill and not create difficulties, at the negotiation table''.

    Mustafa Akinci, ``state minister, deputy prime minister'', and Communal Liberation Party leader, said that meetings were being held for the past three days to discuss and assess the New York talks. Explaining that the ``TRNC'' will display goodwill and adopt a constructive stand at the talks, Akinci expressed the hope that the Greek Cypriot side will do the same.

    Stressing that the equal status of the sides is the main issue in the Cyprus issue, Akicni added that 3 December constitutes a new beginning, even if indirect, and that every beginning is a source of hope.

    Serdar Denktash, leader of the Democratic Party which is the main opposition party, said that they trust Rauf Denktash and give him full support. Serdar Denktash continued: ``We are not raising our hopes too high. Our people should not raise their hopes too high as well''. Serdar Denktash said that the differences of opinion between the political parties had been eliminated to a great extent at this meeting and added that this is a positive development.

    Republican Turkish Party leader Mehmet Ali Talat, in turn, described the indirect talks in New York as very important and expressed belief that the New York talks will help to launch serious steps in resolving the Cyprus issue.

    [02] Demirel on Cyprus; Warns against imposed solution that will lead to clashes

    Columnist Sebahattin Onkibar, writing in Turkiye (24.11.99) says that while accompanying President Demirel in his plane on the way to Trabzon they conferred with him during the flight. They first discussed Cyprus, which is high on Turkey/s agenda, he says, and adds:

    ``President Demirel recalled his meeting with UN Secretary General Kofi Annan and explained why the Cyprus problem has not been solved during the past 25 years. Drawing attention to the de facto situation on the island, he said that the solution of the problem is linked to that state of affairs.

    According to Demirel, the Cyprus problem can be solved if that is realized and accepted.

    Well, what if pressure is exerted or a solution is imposed?

    He replied to our question as follows: `An effort to impose a solution will lead to clashes. Such an approach will create a clash between Greece and Turkey. An unworkable solution must not be imposed. The Cyprus problem does not concern Turkey, Greece, and other countries. However, that is the point it has reached. Turkey wants the problem to be solved. No one can argue the opposite. It has met the economic needs of its 180,000 kinsmen on the island for 25 years. The problem must be solved. However, a just solution must be found. But ignoring the Turkish Cypriots and agreeing to the existence of only Greek Cypriots on the island is unfair''.

    Demirel/s reply showed that Turkey/s policy on Cyprus is not aimed at imposing anything on the island.

    At this point, we would like to say that we applaud the importance Demirel attaches to the protection of our rights. However, we would also like to note that Turkey has to solve the Cyprus problem one way or another.

    Ankara has to solve the Cyprus problem, which it has confronted at all international platforms during the past 25-30 years, through a reasonable approach, not a policy based on sentiments. The problem, which has taken the form of gangrene, will draw Turkey into a dramatic adventure if the effort to solve it now fails.''

    [03] Turkey notes aim of proximity talks, support for Denktash

    According to Anatolia Agency (11:14 hours, 24.11.99) the Turkish Foreign Ministry has announced that the aim of the Cyprus proximity talks, which will begin in New York in December, is to exert efforts for a lasting solution.

    Sermet Atacanli, the deputy spokesman of the Foreign Ministry, replying to repoters/ questions on the Cyprus issue at his weekly news conference, said:

    ``As you know, earlier it was noted that the atmosphere is not yet ready on this issue. A decision was made to first hold proximity talks to prepare the ground for comprehensive discussions toward a lasting solution''.

    Recalling that UN Secretary General Kofi Annan last week invited the sides in the Cyprus issue to New York in December, Atacanli continued: ``At times a confusion in concepts pertaining to the issue is being experienced. Intercommunal talks will not be held in New York. Through a mediator, the two sides will raise the issues they view as essential in the Cyprus problem and will propose models for a solution. The aim is to exert efforts toward preparing the ground for creating an atmosphere conducive to reaching a lasting solution''.

    Atacanli added: ``We fully support Mr. Denktash on this issue. We are now waiting for the New York talks. The two sides, acting upon the call made by the UN Secretary General, will seek a common denominator to hold comprehensive negotiations directed toward a lasting solution and will, within this framework, put forth models for a solution.''

    [04] Turkish leaders convene to discuss Ocalan trial, Cyprus

    Anatolia Agency (16:17 hours, 24 11.99) reports that the leaders of coalition parties and certain other ministers in Turkey convened at the Prime Minister/s Office under Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit.

    At first, Devlet Bahceli, state minister, deputy minister, and Nationalist Action Party leader arrived at the Prime Minister/s Office for the leaders/ summit. Later, Ecevit and Motherland Party leader Mesut Yilmaz arrived.

    Husamettin Ozkan, state minister and deputy prime minister; Cumhur Ersumer, energy and natural resources minister and deputy prime minister; State Ministers Mehmet Ali Irtemcelik and Recept Onal; Justice Minister Hikmet Sami Turk; and Ahmet Kenan Tanrikulu, industry and trade minister participated at the meeting as well.

    The OSCE Summit, pipeline projects, the Ocalan trial, the EU summit in Helsinki, the Cyprus issue, and recent domestic and foreign developments were expected to be discussed at the meeting.

    [05] Ahtisaari conditions for Turkey/s EU membership viewed

    A report in Turkish daily HURRIYET (23.11.99) refers to the five conditions for Turkey/s EU candidacy included in a letter by Finnish President and Term EU Chairman Martti Ahtisaari. These conditions are:

    The EU attaches a lot of importance to human rights. Respect for human rights is an important condition of establishing dialogue with the EU. Turkey must conform to the common foreign and security policies of the EU. All financial aid will be coordinated by a single unit of the EU. National law must be readjusted to conform to the EU/s common law. Turkey must be open to common projects to be able to take part in other EU organizations.

    The report says that Martti Ahtisaari, who came to Turkey immediately after the OSCE summit in Istanbul, had given President Suleyman Demirel the letter specifying these five conditions for Turkey/s candidacy for EU membership. The letter, brought to Turkey so shortly before the Helsinki summit, has made a bombshell effect on diplomatic circles, the report says and adds:

    ``President Demirel has given the EU letter, which he received the other day, to Prime Minister Ecevit. The conditions set forth in the letter have given to rise to serious problems within the government.

    The first paragraph of the one-page letter deals with Turkey/s EU membership. The letter does not make any reference to the Copenhagen principles but to political principles. In the first paragraph it is emphasized that Turkey must fulfil the indispensable political conditions before talks on membership in the union can be started.

    The letter also touches on the candidacy process. It calls attention to the suggestions about Turkey/s candidacy made by the EU during the Luxembourg and the Cardiff summits and makes mention of an aid of 50 million Euros as a first step toward making Ankara eligible for membership.

    What do the Conditions Mean? (subhead)

    Items 1and 4

    Although no direct reference is made to the PKK (The Workers Party of Kurdistan), Abdullah Ocalan (PKK chief), and Cyprus, the first and the fourth conditions set forth in the letter are designed to allow the EU to put significant pressure on Turkey in many fields. It is considered certain, for example, that the EU will demand that the structure of the National Security Council (MGK) be changed, that the role of the Turkish Armed forces be restricted, that the Kurds be given their cultural rights, and that the death penalty be abolished.

    Items 2 and 3

    These items will force Turkey to comply with the EU/s policy on Greece and Cyprus. This means that the EU will be able to force Turkey to make concessions to Greece whenever there is a crisis in the Aegean or over Cyprus. The third item means that the EU will be able to expropriate the material benefits accruing to Turkey from the Customs Union.

    Item 5

    This item will force Turkish organizations to conform to European standards. It will enable non-governmental organizations to coordinate their activities.

    An EU diplomat has said to HURRIYET: If Turkey wants negotiations to start, it must comply with the European norms and the criteria that have been defined.''

    [06] Turkish Cypriot dentists denied permission to cross

    According to YENIDUZEN (25.11.99) the so-called foreign affairs ministry did not give permission to the Turkish Cypriot Dentists Association to participate at the International Dentist Congress, which will be held in Limassol between 27-28 November.

    (DP)

    [07] New bank

    According to KIBRIS (25.11.99) a new bank, the Tilmobank, will open tomorrow in the occupied part of Nicosia. It will operate as a branch of Tilmobank in Turkey.

    (DP)

    [08] ``Universities''

    KIBRIS (25.11.99) reports that the director of the Supreme Educational Committee (YOK) of Turkey, Prof. Kemal Guruz, who came to the occupied area to attend the laying-stone ceremony for the library of the ``Near East University'', gave yesterday an interview to KIBRIS newspaper.

    Guruz said that ``five universities are enough in the TRNC'' and ``you must raise the number of the academic staff at the existing universities''.

    Replying to a question related to the ``International American University'', Gurez stressed ``This university must be eliminated. It really harms higher education in the TRNC. Its opening is not possible. This job is finished.'' (DP)

    COMMENTS AND EDITORIALS Columnist on Turkey/s concessions in Cyprus

    Oktay Eksi writing in HURRIYET (24.11.99) under the title ``Concession, but what kind of concession'', refers to US President Bill Clinton/s statement on Cyprus that ``the status quo cannot be accepted'' and gives two kinds of interpretation to this statement.

    He says that this could mean: ``It is time to recognize the state that has been existing in the north of Cyprus for the last sixteen years''.

    However, adds Eksi, the reality could be exactly the opposite, which is tantamount to say that President Clinton is unaware of the Turkish thesis.

    Referring to the demands expected from Turkey in the Aegean and Cyprus problem, Eksi says that to say ``yes'' to Greece/s demands means, among other things, to consider null and void the declaration by the Turkish Grand National Assembly that extending the territorial waters in the Aegean to 12 miles is casus belli. He says: ``Those who want us to make these gestures appear not to know Turkey because agreeing with the 12 miles means saying yes to Turkey/s drowning in the Aegean.

    As for the sea bed issue, Turkey is not saying `no, we do not want to solve this/. Just the opposite, it says `let us negotiate. If we are unable to agree, then we could go to the court of justice/. Is there anything wrong in this?

    For this reason, Turkey will have to consider not these things but about returning Varosha, in Cyprus, to the Greek Cypriots.

    Turkey could demand this from the TRNC. In fact late Foreign Minister Turan Gunes had made such a promise. However, we should not forget this:

    Just like in Greece, there will be presidential elections in the TRNC next April. Do you know to what extend prime minister Dervish Eroglu, who will be a candidate against Denktash, will exploit the return of Varosha to the Greeks against Denktash?''.

    EF/SK


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


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