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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Cypriot Press and Other Media, 00-10-23

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. 203/00 21-22-23.10 2000

[A] NEWS ITEMS

  • [01] Denktash protests Nikiforos exercise.
  • [02] Ecevit: No concessions on Cyprus.
  • [03] Cem says Papandreou - Ozal agreement is "just rumours".
  • [04] Yilmaz on EU membership, Cyprus.
  • [05] Denktash, others stress loyalty to Turkey.
  • [06] Turkey/s Yilmaz, EU/s Verheugen view membership.
  • [07] Hasuoigky describes Jakarta contacts as beneficial.
  • [08] Reactionary activities in pseudostate.
  • [09] Ozgurgun resigns from DP, joins UBP.
  • [10] Denktash pleased over withdrawal of Armenian Bill.
  • [11] DP decides to support reaction against package if Turkey not targeted.
  • [12] Desalination plant at "EMU".

  • [A] NEWS ITEMS

    [01] Denktash protests Nikiforos exercise According to illegal BRTK (20:00 hours, 20.10.00), Turkish Cypriot leader

    Rauf Denktash has protested the Nikiforos exercise claiming that "by arming themselves the Greek Cypriots are making a very great mistake that will lead to grave results."

    Denktash held a meeting with the leaders of the political parties on the eve of the fifth round of the proximity talks. It was attended by Dervis Eroglu, leader of the National Unity Party and "prime minister"; Mustafa Akinci, leader of the Communal Liberation Party, "state minister, and deputy prime minister"; Serdar Denktash, leader of the main opposition Democratic Party (DP); Mehmet Ali Talat, leader of the Republican Turkish Party; Tahsin Ertugruloglu, "minister of foreign affairs and defense"; Zorlu Tore, leader of the Nationalist Justice Party; Okyay Sadikoglu, leader of Our Party; Mehmet Barut on behalf of the National Revival Party; other officials from these parties; Ergun Olgun, "presidential undersecretary", and political advisers.

    In a statement before the meeting, Rauf Denktash recalled that he meets with party officials before every round of the proximity talks. He said that he would brief them on what expects the Turkish Cypriot side at the talks to be held in Geneva next week and on the work the Turkish Cypriot side is conducting in this regard. Denktash said that he would also listen to the views of the party officials.

    Recalling that Alvaro de Soto, the UN Secretary General/s special Cyprus envoy, would be coming to Cyprus, Denktash said he believes that de Soto will hold beneficial talks before the fifth round of talks.

    Referring to the Nikiforos exercise, Denktash claimed that Greek planes flew over Cyprus "in an unprecedented show of force". "We do not know if the planes will spend the night at Paphos Airport, but if they do that means that the airport has been reopened. That would be a very important development. I would like to recall once again. The Greek Cypriot side and Greece are following a very wrong path in this arms race and in their threatening behaviour. They can never win the arms race. A 65-million strong Turkey is 40 miles away. It is not very wise to constantly provoke Turkey or to threaten us," Denktash said. He added that the Turkish people can respond to that, adding:

    "This is leading us to an escalation and an escalation can lead to dangerous situations."

    He said that he heard that foreign diplomats took steps during the week to prevent the exercise but that the Greek Cypriots did not listen to them either. Denktash said that he does not know what the UN Secretariat General was doing but that he would convey the Turkish Cypriots/ protest to the UN Secretariat General.

    At the end of the meeting, the officials of the various parties commented. Dervis Eroglu said that they assessed the situation on the eve of de Soto/s visit and of the fifth round of talks. Eroglu said that they worked on a strategy.

    Mustafa Akinci said that the meeting was useful on the eve of de Soto/s visit and of the fifth round of talks. He stressed that this was the first such meeting after the fourth round of talks.

    Zorlu Tore said that the Greek Cypriots aim at joining the EU on their own and eliminate the pseudostate. Tore stated that Cyprus is approaching the end of the process and that de Soto is trying to please the Cyprus Government.

    Mehmet Barut said that "an agreement should be reached on the basis of the Turkish Cypriots/ sovereign equality and a confederation."

    Mehmet Ali Talat asserted that the proximity talks should be assessed in parallel with the process of Turkey/s and Cyprus/ EU membership. He stated that the outside conditions are suitable for a solution on the island. Talat charged that an important stage is starting in the Cyprus negotiations, and that during the fifth round of talks the sides will discuss non documents for the first time (as heard).

    Atay Ahmet Rasit, the DP/s foreign policy official, said that there have been no changes in the position of the Turkish Cypriot side which, during the fifth round, will defend the view that cooperation and a confederal solution between the two sides will bring lasting peace to the island.

    [02] Ecevit: No concessions on Cyprus TGRT Television (19:10 hours, 19.10.00) aired a recorded studio interview

    with Turkish Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit. During the interview, Ecevit referred to the recent EU resolution on Cyprus and said: "When were taking steps toward candidate country status, we clearly stated that we shall make no concessions on Cyprus. It is out of the question for us to make any concessions on Cyprus. There are two independent states there. There is a political unit whose state status has been confirmed under the most difficult conditions. So long as that unit/s independent state identity is not accepted there can be no solution between the two sides. We did not conceal our views on the issue. We clearly expressed them. They are aware of our views on the issue".

    [03] Cem says Papandreou - Ozal agreement is "just rumours" Anatolia Agency (14:00 hours, 20.10.00) reports that Turkish Foreign

    Minister Ismail Cem, speaking at a news conference he held at the Foreign Ministry, inter alia, referred to the statement made by Papoulias, chairman of the Greek Parliament Foreign Affairs and Defense Council to the effect that former Greek Prime Minister Papandreou and Turgut Ozal, the eighth Turkish president, "had reached an agreement on the withdrawal of Turkish troops from Cyprus", and said: "These claims are not serious, they are rumours".

    [04] Yilmaz on EU membership, Cyprus Anatolia Agency (20:33 hours, 19.10.00) reports that Mesut Yilmaz, the

    Turkish State Minister and Deputy Prime Minister, said on Thursday that Turkey gets prepared for the European Union (EU) rapidly and seriously.

    Addressing a lunch hosted by the Union of Industrial and Employers/ Confederations of Europe (UNICE), Yilmaz said that Turkey perceived Helsinki messages well, and claimed that it was known that there were wrong views and problems in the EU public regarding Turkey/s candidacy and accession. Yilmaz also said Turkey will give priority to promotion in the near future to overcome these.

    In the meantime, Javier Solana, the foreign policy and security chief of the European Union (EU) said on Thursday that they search for a formula which will satisfy Turkey about the European Security and Defense Identity (ESDI).

    Solana said that the ESDI, Turkey/s accession and its possible contributions have been taken up in his meeting with the State Minister and Deputy Premier Mesut Yilmaz.

    Solana also noted that he stressed the importance of the Accession Partnership Document which the EU Commission will announce in the beginning of November in his meeting with Yilmaz.

    Furthermore, speaking at a seminar on Turkey-EU relations held by the German Hanns Seidel Foundation, Yilmaz said that the Accession Partnership Document, which will be announced by the EU Commission in November, will start a new stage in Turkey-EU relations.

    Candidacy to the EU is a beginning and obligations should be fulfilled reciprocally, said Yilmaz, adding that Turkey/s accession process to the EU continues with intense preparations and Turkey/s first target is to start full membership negotiations as soon as possible.

    Mesut Yilmaz stressed that Turkey has speeded up its reforms, adding legal reforms in the fields of human rights and democratization will continue. The problems in the financial cooperation should be overcome between Turkey and EU, he said, noting that isolating a country only by religious and cultural excuses is against the EU values.

    When Michel Gloes, the deputy leader of the parliamentary group of the Christian Democrat Union and Christian Social Union (CDU/CSU) parties said that Turkey can/t have a future in the EU, as Turks are different, Yilmaz said "if you are against Turkey/s full membership, don/t seek for artificial reasons. There is only one reason, tell us that. In fact you are telling, this reason is the fact that Turkey is not Christian".

    "Don/t talk about such criteria as human rights as Christian Democrats have never been interested in them. Don/t also talk about economic criteria, because we are the only country which abides by Maastricht criteria among the other candidates. We want to be a full member of the EU, but if you want us to change our religion, this can/t happen", Yilmaz added.

    In addition, staging a press briefing in Brussles, Yilmaz said that he didn/t think that there would be any return back to the period following the Luxembourg Summit, as positive developments have been recorded since that summit.

    "Verheugen who prepares the Accession Partnership Document acts very carefully and he knows the documents which we won/t accept. The aim of our contacts in fact is not to face such a situation. The impression I got says that Turkey won/t face any negative development. I can speak more clearly about this issue after meeting with Verheugen tomorrow", said Yilmaz.

    Yilmaz stressed that the Helsinki Summit showed that Germans have been very influential in the decisions about Turkey, adding that Turkey knows the things that must be done by itself in the fields of human rights, democratization and economic adjustment.

    "Turkey pursues a resolved programme. The German Christians can/t express cultural and religious differences of Turkey, but they mean it. But these differences can/t be defended in front of the public opinion in Europe", said Yilmaz.

    "The abolishment of death penalty has not been taken as an important problem in our meetings with the EU Commission, as Turkey does not execute death penalty for more than 15 years", said Yilmaz, adding that they don/t want the Cyprus issue to be covered by the Accession Partnership Document.

    "They should know the fact that the parameters of the Cyprus question are known. Compulsions other than these parameters will make the solution in Cyprus more difficult", said Yilmaz, adding that he believes the coming period is the most critical period in the relations with the EU.

    "EU evaluated the factor of Turkey in all aspects when Turkey assumed a resolved attitude following the Luxembourg summit and it finally granted a perspective to Turkey. The realization of this perspective depends on the steps which Turkey will take. Turkey knows that", he added.

    [05] Denktash, others stress loyalty to Turkey According to illegal Bayrak Radio 1 (10:30 hours, 21.10.00), The Nationalist

    Justice Party (MAP) is continuing to organize festivities throughout the occupied area under the banner of "Loyalty to the Motherland and Gratitude to the Turkish Armed Forces". The eighth such festivity was held in occupied Famagusta on 20 October.

    MAP leader Zorlu Tore speaking at the festivity stressed that Turkey and the "TRNC" act as one fist. "Our flag will never be pulled down as long as we are loyal to Turkey", he said. Tore stressed the importance of the diplomatic struggle Rauf Denktash has been waging, and said this struggle should never be underestimated. The MAP leader asserted that it is the duty of the "government" to establish domestic order. He then said that it is the duty of the Turkish Cypriots to live with the reality that they are Turks. Tore said that "the land won at the cost of lives and bloodshed will never be given to anyone else".

    Democratic Party "deputy" Kenan Akin claimed that "the Turkish Cypriots have been living in their land thanks to the security provided by their brothers, and the peace and tranquillity the Turkish army has bestowed on them". Strongly condemning those who have been criticizing Turkey lately, Akin said: "We must all be united as one fist against those who slander the flag the soldiers, or our motherland".

    In his speech, Turkish Cypriot leader Denktash noted that "it is impossible to give back the land acquired at the cost of martyrs in 1955, 1958, and the 1960/s".

    Denktash said that the Greek Cypriots will achieve nothing by arming themselves "to the teeth". The most sensible thing they can do, he alleged, is to negotiate neighbourhood conditions and fall into step with the Turkish Cypriots.

    Denktash said that he is ready to hold all kinds of talks with the Greek Cypriots but that "he will never give up the flag or sovereignty". He pointed out that the Turkish Cypriots have the support of Anatolia which sees Cyprus as a cause of honour, adding: "As long as Anatolia sees Cyprus like that, we can never be destroyed".

    [06] Turkey/s Yilmaz, EU/s Verheugen view membership Anatolia Agency (20:06 hours, 20.10.00) reports that Turkish Deputy Prime

    Minister Mesut Yilmaz told EU commissioner Responsible for Enlargement Guenter Verheugen that Turkey had no intention of veering from the course that it embarked upon following last year/s Helsinki Summit, when he met him in Brussels on Friday.

    During a joint press conference, Verheugen said that they had evaluated the latest situation regarding Turkey-EU relations during their meeting. He said the Accession Partnership Accord which will be announced on November 8 is very important for both sides. Noting that he was pleased about the positive developments in Turkish-Greek relations, Verheugen said that Ankara/s support was very important for reaching a solution in Cyprus.

    Yilmaz said at the meeting he focused on the financial cooperation and remarked that the EU should provide financial assistance to Turkey as it does to other EU candidates and fulfil its commitments in this area. Yilmaz told reporters that Verheugen had assured him that he would work to overcome certain technical problems.

    Responding to a question, Verheugen said that expecting Turkey to start membership negotiations with the EU by the end of 2001 would not be realistic since Turkey would not be ready by this time. He also said that Turkey had not yet met the Copenhagen criteria, which is a fact recognized by both sides.

    Although it is not a pre-condition, Verheugen said, the abolition of capital punishment would be an important positive factor for Turkey/s membership.

    Yilmaz also met with EU Commissioner for Labour and Social Conditions Anna Diamantopoulou on Friday morning. Diamantopoulou, after the meeting, told reporters that she and Yilmaz had discussed social conditions in Turkey. She added that there were problems in Turkey regarding limitations of labour unions/ activities.

    Yilmaz said he was very happy about his contacts in Brussels during which he had the chance to assess Turkish-EU relations from many aspects.

    "We always said that our path to the EU was going to be tough and full of obstacles. There are some ongoing problems but we will overcome them through our government/s determination," Yilmaz told reporters at a press conference.

    Noting that EU Commissioner for Enlargement Guenter Verheugen had contacts in Athens, Yilmaz said that the Greeks had some familiar demands regarding the Accession Partnership Accord. Despite this, Yilmaz remarked, the accord would not include very negative statements against Turkey. He said some details in the accord might be disturbing and the document might express some expectations from Turkey on the issue of Cyprus.

    Declining to pronounce a solid date for the beginning of membership negotiations with the EU, Yilmaz said, "This mostly depends on Turkey/s performance".

    Noting that Greece has always had a number of demands from Turkey, Yilmaz said he believed the problems would be overcome if the current rapprochement between the two countries continues.

    Yilmaz told reporters that he focused mostly on the EU/s financial aid for Turkey during his meeting with Verheugen.

    During his meeting with Verheugen, Yilmaz said, they also exchanged views on the lifting of the death penalty in Turkey. He said, "Turkey is not expected to take a very radical step very soon on this point... We admit that Turkey has to abolish the death penalty within a reasonable point in the future in order to join the EU".

    [07] Hasipoglu describes Jakarta contacts as beneficial According to illegal Bayrak Radio 1 (15:30 hours, 21.10.00) the world

    Interparliamentary Union meeting has ended in Jakarta. A delegation from the pseudo-assembly participated in the meeting as well. Headed by "assembly speaker" Ertugrul Hasipoglu, the "delegation" held important contacts in Indonesia and attended various meetings.

    Assessing his contacts in Jakarta in a statement to illegal BRT, Hasipoglu said that at the meetings he held he explained "the justified views of the Turkish Cypriot side and the Cyprus realities". He noted that the Interparliamentary Union meetings were beneficial for the pseudostate. Noting that the most important development was the meeting he held with the president and deputy president of the Interparliamentary Union of the Organization of Islamic Conference, Hasipoglu said that as a result of the meeting the Turkish Cypriots were invited to attend as an observer the newly established organization/s meeting to be held in Morocco. He continued:

    "Today was the closing session. Resolutions were read. We were referred to as the two sides in line with the principle of equality. This made us very happy".

    Noting that extensive contacts were held in Jakarta and that meetings were held with the delegations of many countries, Hasipooglu said that these meetings gave the opportunity to present the Turkish Cypriot point of view with regards to the problem.

    Noting that they would leave Jakarta for Australia on the same night, Hasipoglu added that they will continue their contacts there as well in line with their problem.

    [08] Reactionary activities in pseudostate A report in KIBRIS (Internet Version 19.10.00) says that Turkey has begun to

    scrutinise the reactionary activities in the occupied area. According to a report titled "Reactionary Activities in Cyprus" that has been submitted to Turkey/s National Security Council (MGK), a number of religious extremist organizations that have found shelter in Turkey have begun to infiltrate into the pseudostate. It has been learned that Turkey is preparing to warn the pseudostate in this regard.

    According to the Turkish private television NTV, a report prepared on the reactionary and extreme leftist groups in "TRNC" since 1994 has been submitted to MGK.

    The report presented by NTV correspondent Ugur Sefkat makes the following claims regarding reactionary activities in "TRNC": "The reactionary activities are carried out especially by the Baksibendi, Suleymanci, and Nurcu groups. The organizational activities of these groups have intensified after 1994. These groups have entered the political field after organizing themselves in BP (Our Party). The efforts of these groups to attract sympathizers, to organize, and to widen their area of influence are being exerted in parallel with their efforts to establish foundations and to set up hostels and association centers in coordination with their activities in Turkey. The propaganda campaign of these groups is aimed at university students".

    Touching on Naksibendi sect Leader Sheikh Nazim Adil Kibrisi, the NTV report says: "Sheikh Kibrisi is the most influential individual... Kibrisi is unable to leave the country due to his affliction with a heart disease. Consequently, a large number of disciples have come to Cyprus to follow him. Nazim Adil has attracted attention with his endeavour to purchase plots of land in the vicinity of Lefke Avrupa University. Adil/s disciples have recently started stocking up natural gas tubes and food supplies".

    NTV correspondent Ugur Sefkat has said the following regarding the Nurcu and Suleymanci sects in the pseudostate: "Nurcu sect: The Fethullah Gulen group has three student hostels and a classroom in north Cyprus. The group also follows a long-term organization strategy aimed at university students. There are at least 70 subscribers to the group/s periodical Sizinti (infiltration) among the students of Dogu Akdeniz Universite (East Mediterranean University).

    The Suleymanci group: This group is maintaining its activities in an organized manner through Tunahan Company Limited, which has been established in 1990. The group/s followers residing in Guzelyurt (Morphou), Yesilyurt (Pendayia), Mevlevi (Kyra), and Gayretkoy (Avlona) carry out their activities through Tahsil Cagindaki Talebelere Yardim Dernegi (Association for Extending Support to Students in the Age of Learning)".

    The report notes that reactionary organizations that have found refuge in Turkey are giving importance to holding their activities in the pseudostate and that students wearing headscarves, in particular, are heading toward universities there. The report stresses that a number of associations in Turkey have dispatched 300 graduates of imam hatip schools in Turkey who wear headscarves. Finally, the report notes that at the conclusion of the investigations regarding the matter, Turkey is preparing to issue a warning to the "TRNC government" regarding reactionary activities in the pseudostate.

    [09] Ozgurgun resigns from DP, joins UBP According to illegal BRTK (20:00 hours, 20.10.00), "deputy" Huseyin Ozgurgun

    has resigned from the Democratic Party (DP) and has joined the National Unity Party (UBP).

    The current distribution of "seats" in the "assembly" is as follows: UBP has 23 "seats", DP 12, Communal Liberation Party 7, Republican Turkish Party 6, and independents 2.

    [10] Denktash pleased over withdrawal of Armenian Bill Anatolia Agency (14:44 hours, 20.10.00) reports that Turkish Cypriot leader

    Rauf Denktash said on Friday that the withdrawal of the resolution on the genocide on Armenians from the US House of Representatives was expected.

    Speaking to the press, Denktash said that he is pleased because "common sense prevailed in the US".

    "Upsetting a friendly country like Turkey was not a right action in respect of the interests of the US for peace and the safety of the region. I hope this fact will be understood at last", he added.

    [11] DP decides to support reaction against package if Turkey not targeted Illegal Bayrak Radio 1 (10:30 hours, 20.10.00) reports that the Democratic

    Party (DP) "assembly group", which assessed the recent political developments, has decided to support the reactions to be shown by the various sectors of the community against the socioeconomic package provided they remain within a democratic framework and provided they are directed against the "government".

    The DP headquarters issued a written statement announcing the assessment of the party group and noting that Ahmet Elbasan recently resigned from the party as a result of a misunderstanding and lack of information. The statement added that the "deputy" in question later returned to the party.

    In its assessment of the general strike and the rally, the statement said that the DP participated in the rally in a bid not to undermine a decision jointly made and not to cause a division in the reaction against the economic package. The statement added that the "government" is trying to direct the reaction shown against the package toward Turkey but that this stand was not reflected in the rally. Assessing as a positive development the absence of anti-Turkey slogans during the rally, the statement added that the DP, as the main opposition party, decided to continue its support for the reactions to be shown by the various sectors of the community against the package provided they remain within a democratic framework and provided they are directed toward the right target, namely the "government".

    [12] Desalination plant at "EMU" KIBRIS (23.10.00) reports that the so- called East Mediterranean University

    in the occupied area has decided to establish a desalination plant. The plant will use the reverse osmosis system and will provide for all the potable water and other water needs of the so-called university.

    The plant will produce one thousand tons of water daily. This capacity will later on rise to 3-4 thousand tons.


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


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