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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Press and Other Media, 02-06-11

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 PRESS AND OTHER MEDIA No.109/02 11.06.02

[A] NEWS ITEMS

  • [01] AFRIKA writes that three scenarios were considered during the recent NSC meeting.
  • [02] Statements by Rauf Denktas without any reference to the illegal Turkish invasion and occupation of Cyprus.
  • [03] Denktas: If the EU accepts Cyprus prior to a solution to its political problem, there will be no need for exerting efforts towards the unification of the island.
  • [04] The Turkish Cypriots will appeal to the ECHR for their missing persons.
  • [05] The so-called "Assembly" approved the 12 miles; Talat: The aim of the decision is to sabotage the negotiations procedure.
  • [B] COMMENTS AND EDITORIALS

  • [06] Turkish columnist supports that Cyprus is the real issue which has to be solved for Turkey/s accession to the EU.
  • [07] Turkish columnist says that there are two lines in Turkey regarding the country/s EU accession course.

  • [A] NEWS ITEMS

    [01] AFRIKA writes that three scenarios were considered during the recent NSC meeting

    AFRIKA (10.06.02) reports under banner headlines that three scenarios were considered during the recent Turkish National Security Council, (NSC), meeting which were prepared by the Turkish Foreign Ministry.

    According to the paper the tree scenarios are the following:

    1. The EU declares that it has accepted the South Cyprus into the EU alone, not the whole of Cyprus, thus the EU officially accepts the division in the island. This scenario does not bring Turkey face to face with the EU; however, this could be the start of a problematic period.

    2. The EU accepts the South Cyprus as the sole representative of Cyprus, thus Turkey becomes an occupier of an EU territory and Turkey comes face to face with the EU. This scenario will block the start of Turkey's membership negotiations with the EU. This scenario will create instability in the East Mediterranean. The key to this settlement are the countries of Italy, Spain and the Netherlands which say that first a settlement should be found, then EU membership.

    3. Insisting on finding a solution and then EU membership, will delay Cyprus 's membership to the EU. From Turkey's point of view this is the most positive scenario. In order to secure this, lobbying is going on with senior British, USA and EU diplomats, AFRIKA concludes.

    [02] Statements by Rauf Denktas without any reference to the illegal Turkish invasion and occupation of Cyprus

    Illegal Bayrak Radio (10.6.02) broadcast that the Turkish Cypriot leader, Mr Rauf Denktas replied to questions by a "BRT" correspondent with regard to Cyprus developments. Denktas was reminded about the following statement by UN special Cyprus envoy Alvaro de Soto after his meeting with UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan in Rome: The direct talks are progressing slowly. Given this situation, I do not believe that the sides will come up with a preliminary agreement by the end of June. There is no doubt that the problems can be resolved, however, political will is needed to achieve this.

    In reaction, Denktas said that do Soto is right. Pointing out that the political will of the Turkish Cypriot side is very evident, Denktas said: We have our own state, sovereignty, and self-determination right. Because we have all these, we extended a hand and proposed to the Greek Cypriot side, which has been trying to take all this away from us for the past 39 years, to establish a new partnership together. All this must be at the basis of a new partnership.

    Otherwise, Denktas stressed, there cannot be a new partnership and a new written agreement would be undone within three years, leading to a new disaster. He added: Therefore, I agree with de Soto's remarks. With these words, I am also underlining the political will on our part.

    Denktas was asked: Cyprus Government spokesman Papapetrou is saying that he is expecting important developments with regard to the Cyprus issue in the coming months, and it is even possible to reach a solution because the EU is applying on Ankara the most intense pressure in its history. What is your opinion on this subject?

    Denktas responded: The Greek Cypriots have always acted relying on the pressure to be applied on Ankara or on the support they will receive from foreigners. Each time, they realized that they were wrong.

    Pointing out that Turkey's right to join the EU cannot be overlooked and the necessary measures are being adopted for accession, Denktas stated that the Ankara government demonstrated its sincerity in this regard to the whole world. He added: No one can present the Cyprus issue as an obstacle before Ankara, nor does anyone have the right to do such a thing. This would be great ruthlessness, and if anything, it would be a ploy on the part of those who do not want to admit Turkey into the EU.

    Therefore, Denktas remarked, Papapetrou is making a big mistake by trying to solve the problem by means of pressure to be applied on Ankara. Denktas stated: The two equal and sovereign sides, the two owners of Cyprus, the Turkish Cypriots and the Greek Cypriots, can settle this issue through the assistance of their own motherlands, if they can. However, the continuation of the ploy that has been going on for 39 years, namely the ploy to claim ownership over the entire island by hiding behind the title of the legitimate government of Cyprus, will not yield any results.

    Lord David Hannay arrived in Cyprus again, will this visit constitute any pressure, Denktas was asked. He answered: If a person cannot withstand pressure, he will give everything, but he will not concede his freedom or his life, he will not mortgage his future, and he will not agree to an agreement that will cause a recurrence of the 1963-1974 incidents. Therefore, talk of pressure is empty words. Are they the ones who are feeding or protecting us, so they can apply pressure on us? Are they the ones who granted us rights for 39, so they can apply pressure on us by saying that they will revoke the rights they granted to us? Will they apply pressure on us because we refused to be the minority in the struggle launched 39 years ago to turn us into a minority among the Greek Cypriots?

    Having posed these questions, Denktas asked that everyone first look at himself. He said: Let them ask themselves what they did for the Turkish Cypriots for the past 39 years to make them yield to their pressure. Denktas remarked that in the name of their freedom, the Turkish Cypriots exerted maximum efforts, sustained martyrs, and sacrificed their economic development in order not to be separated from their motherland.

    In conclusion, Denktas stated: Consequently, pressure does not affect us. Pressure would have the contrary effect, it would make us more rigid, because, like a cat forced into a corner, a person who is alone is forced to free himself by pouncing on those who forced him into the corner. This matter cannot be resolved through pressure. The problem can be resolved through mercy and common sense, by complying with the supremacy of the law, by seeing the realities of 39 years, and by remembering the mass graves.

    [03] Denktas: If the EU accepts Cyprus prior to a solution to its political problem, there will be no need for exerting efforts towards the unification of the island

    ORTAM (11.06.02) reports that the Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktas has claimed that in case the European Union accepts the Republic of Cyprus as member, there will be no need for exerting efforts to reunite the island.

    Mr Denktas expressed the above-mentioned view commenting on a statement of the Foreign Minister of the Republic of Cyprus, Mr Ioannis Kasoulides who had said that if the historical opportunity for finding a solution to the Cyprus problem is lost, Cyprus will accede to the EU in December and the efforts for reuniting Cyprus will take a different form.

    Responding to a question, the Turkish Cypriot leader alleged the following:

    "We are seeing the substance of the 'window of opportunity', which Kasoulides has in mind during our discussions with Clerides. We are face to face with an approach based on not accepting our equal sovereignty, on recognizing the right to the Greek Cypriot refugees to return to their old places, on the existence of the 1960 Republic and on the non-existence of the TRNC. This is the window of opportunity! The EU carrot is the bait for dragging us into this trap. Come as a minority to a funeral without a state, without a status and without sovereignty. .".

    Referring to the possibility of Cyprus' acceding to the EU prior to the solution of the Cyprus problem, Mr Denktas said that in that case no efforts for reunifying the island would be needed and added:

    "If in that case the EU does not begin direct contacts with the TRNC for the unification with the EU, Northern Cyprus will proceed on its own way with Turkey. .The determination of the EU to be a Christian club would be stressed. .".

    Commenting on these statements, ORTAM notes that "the first and permanent" so-called "president" of the self-declared "TRNC", Denktas, who began his carrier with the slogan "partition or death", walks towards his target, even with slow steps.

    [04] The Turkish Cypriots will appeal to the ECHR for their missing persons

    KIBRIS (11.06.02) reports that the Association of Families of the Victims of War has appealed to the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) on the issue of finding out the fate of the Turkish Cypriot missing persons.

    The paper writes that yesterday, Ertan Ersan, chairman of the Association and other members of the administrative committee, marched to the Ledra Palace, which is on the Green Line dividing Nicosia into two parts, and handed to a United Nations officer a memorandum for President Clerides and Mr Alvaro de Soto, UN Secretary-General's Special Advisor for Cyprus. In the memorandum the Association demands the solution of the issue of the missing persons as soon as possible.

    Mr Ersan said that they appealed to the ECHR in order to ascertain the fate of Sahap Semi, Lutfi Celul and Saydam Husnu who disappeared between the years 1963 and 1974. The ECHR will deal with the appeal on 12 June. Mr Ersan said that they would appeal for a fourth missing person named Naim Huseyin, as well.

    [05] The so-called "Assembly" approved the 12 miles; Talat: The aim of the decision is to sabotage the negotiations procedure

    KIBRIS (11.06.02) reports that the so-called "Assembly" approved yesterday the "draft-law" for extending the territorial waters of the Republic of Cyprus being under the occupation of the Turkish army from three to twelve miles.

    According to the paper, the decision was not unanimous. Talking on the issue, Ferdi Sabit Soyer, General Secretary and so-called "MP" of the Republican Turkish Party (RTP), reminded that the territorial waters of the Republic of Cyprus were extended to 12 miles in 1964 and said: "We were sleeping while this issue was there for so many years and now we brought it hastily onto the agenda as if it were something new".

    Furthermore, talking on the same issue RTP leader, Mehmet Ali Talat noted:

    "We have asked where was your mind for 38 years regarding the issue of the territorial waters. .The aim is to sabotage the negotiations procedure. You began this thinking that the Greek Cypriots might get angry and the talks stop".

    Meanwhile according to KIBRIS (07.06.02), the "draft-law" for extending the territorial waters of the "TRNC" was published in the so-called Official Gazette of the pseudostate on 4th June.

    The paper reports: "Natural and legal entities can submit in writing their views and proposals on the "bill" to the `TRNC Assembly/ by the 11th of June. In justifying the drafting of this `bill/ it is stated that, contrary to the principle of reciprocity between states in the international law, and since its main neighbouring countries, the Greek Cypriot Administration of South Cyprus and the Republic of Turkey extended their territorial waters to 12 miles, the principle of reciprocity was disturbed against the `TRNC/.

    a) The Greek Cypriot Administration of South Cyprus, has extended its territorial waters, to 12 miles, with the Territorial Waters Law of 45/64 passed on 6th August 1964.

    b) The territorial waters of Turkey, according to the Territorial Waters Law 2647, of 20 May, 1982, in principle is 6 nautical miles. However, the Council of Ministers has empowered to decide the territorial waters beyond the 6 nautical miles.

    Within this framework, 12 nautical miles, is in use regarding the territorial waters of Turkey in the Black Sea and in the Mediterranean.

    Within this framework, the TRNC, taking into consideration the special conditions of the seas surrounding its shores; the practice by the other countries of the region, and the sovereignty principle has decided to extend it territorial waters to 12 nautical miles. The "draft-law" on the territorial waters consists of seven paragraphs".


    [B] COMMENTS AND EDITORIALS

    [06] Turkish Columnist supports that Cyprus is the real issue which has to be solved for Turkey's accession to the EU

    Under the title "The real issue" Burak Bekdil of Turkish Daily News (11.06.02) supports that everyone in Ankara is privately aware that all of the reform talk for EU membership is a mere waste of time, unless there is a settlement in Cyprus, and everyone is privately aware that none of the people who attended Friday's high-profile, low-content meeting really create Turkey's Cyprus policy. Mr Bekdil writes the following:

    "On the surface, the statement released after what was thought to be a most critical meeting to discuss Turkey's European Union ambitions, tells of political unity and dedication to push for EU reforms. Behind it, lie scores of intricacies involving domestic politics and far more sticky issues.

    'European Union membership is the common goal of all of the parties who attended," a communique released after last Friday's meeting said. Instead, it should have read, "European Union membership, without having to give concessions on sensitive issues, is the common goal of all of the parties who attended.'

    Apparently, President Ahmet Necdet Sezer wanted to break a deadlock in the reform process. For the president, the real issue was to convene a successful meeting. Very well. The political leaders seem to have agreed to give pace to reforms, which did not surprise anyone. However, it may mean overtime work for Turkish lawmakers in the heat of the Ankara summer. That's fine too. But that's not all there is to it.

    For traders and for Tansu Ciller, the real issue was whether Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit would have to pull out of the meeting. As expected, Mr Ecevit pulled out, and so did Mrs Ciller -- in a move she thought was terribly smart but apparently backfired. The prime minister's absence, as always, sparked fears of political paralysis. The premier's Sunday brunch with reporters, his first public appearance in more than a week, may fail to steady nervous markets this week. The markets should perhaps get used to the situation after Mr Ecevit's frail health has put off several Cabinet meetings and cost him two critical meetings since he was first admitted to hospital on May 4. This is not the entire picture either.

    Technically speaking, the real issue could be whether, with or without a recess, Parliament would produce enough votes to enact the sticky issues, like the abolition of the death penalty and easing restrictions on broadcasting and education in the Kurdish language. At the presidential summit, nationalist Deputy Premier Devlet Bahceli reiterated his party's apparent position -- to oppose both moves and a Greek-sponsored settlement in Cyprus. Mathematically speaking, the coalition's two parties, with support from the opposition seats, may pass these reforms -- not the settlement. However, Mr Bahceli warned that 'if the partners made a habit of allying with the opposition against the Nationalist Action Party (NAP), the coalition would be in danger.'

    Is the warning extremely critical? Yes and no. Yes, because what Bahceli said has raised, for the first time, the possibility that the coalition alliance could fall apart. No, because the chances of the NAP breaking apart from its allies, only because they voted for reforms in line with the opposition, are quite weak. As for Cyprus, anything the NAP would vote against, the others would do the same anyway.

    The meeting was not a breakthrough in Turkey's troubled, slow road to the EU. Nor were its contents surprising, by any criteria. The participants said they agreed on a framework. It was good that the leaders did not agree to disagree -- as they often do. On the other hand, the matters discussed at the meeting were only minor, though necessary, and "the real issue" remained out of focus.

    The political establishment keeps on debating reforms, so does the public -- but the real issue is Cyprus. A year ago, the trouble island was a slow-fuse time bomb. Today, the fuse is not so slow. Everyone in Ankara is privately aware that all of the reform talk for EU membership is a mere waste of time, unless there is a settlement in Cyprus, and everyone is privately aware that none of the people who attended Friday's high-profile, low-content meeting really create Turkey's Cyprus policy".

    [07] Turkish columnist says that there are two lines in Turkey regarding the country's EU accession course

    Under the title "Two lines", Mete Belovacikli writes the following in Turkish Daily News (11.06.02):

    "Although Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit claims the opposite, there is an obvious problem with the governance. It seems impossible to pursue either an anti-EU or a pro-EU policy at this point.

    The parties are becoming keen. There are those who say, 'We should enter the EU at all costs,' on the one hand, while there are those who say, 'We will enter the EU, but we should not ignore our priorities,' on the other.

    The fight between the two parties began with Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit's statement, that steps might be taken on the abolition of the death penalty and education and broadcasting in the mother tongue. At the time, the Nationalist Action Party (NAP) put forth a stance similar to its present one, and the debate was shelved "for the time being.'

    However, the debate began to heat up, especially while the process in Cyprus was progressing. As the prime minister did not make any detailed statement on the issue because of his illness, some circles, especially Motherland Party (MP) leader Mesut Yilmaz, started openly saying that steps should be taken on the abolition of the death penalty, and broadcasting and education in the mother tongue.

    If these demands could have been handled separately from each other, the problems would not have grown much further, but when Yilmaz said, as a deputy prime minister, that 'Denktas must be more forthcoming in the Cyprus talks,' the debate gained momentum.

    That is why the recent National Security Council (NSC) meeting focused mainly on the Cyprus issue. Moreover, the issue led to tough discussions, although not reflected in the media to a great extent. Foreign Minister Ismail Cem went to Cyprus immediately, possibly due to the atmosphere of the meeting, and announced that they were supporting Denktas' policies.

    The General Staff also attached special importance to Cyprus in its statement...

    A couple of months ago, NAP leader Devlet Bahceli did not limit the discussion topics to the abolition of the death penalty, and education and broadcasting in the mother tongue, and he attached special importance to Cyprus in his recent statement. Let us add to this the prime minister's recent press conference, held on Sunday, which included the statement: 'There is no relation between Cyprus and the EU. They are two different processes. We back our theses in Cyprus.'

    The picture becomes clear...

    Standing on the same ground on the issues, such as the abolition of the death penalty, Prime Minister Ecevit expresses similar opinions to Bahceli on the Cyprus issue. Moreover, main opposition True Path Party (TPP) leader Tansu Ciller supports these opinions.

    Let's not mix up the statements...

    Turkey is entering a fight, whose parties are slowly becoming clear... There are those who say, "We should take every step including Cyprus for the sake of the EU bid," on the one hand, while there are those who say, 'We cannot relate Cyprus to our relations with the EU, and we cannot make any concessions," on the other.

    In other words, those who say, "We should definitely enter the EU," will struggle with those who say, "Let's enter the EU in an honorable way.'

    The TPP's recent statement is meant to refer to the fact that it is trying to share the NAP's votes on the second option, because there are many parties on the other side.

    However, it is becoming inevitable that Turkey should make a choice between these two political lines, as much as this debate is becoming sharp. Moreover, these preferences may draw very strong reactions.

    It must be admitted that there is a lack of government in the middle of these discussions... Because there is no government will.

    All members of the government pursue their own policies on the above-mentioned discussion topics. The political actors in Turkey should seek other government alternatives, which would show a definite will on these issues, and make a choice regarding the early elections.

    Who knows? Maybe everything will match Heritage Foundation expert John Hulsman's theory, that the developments in Cyprus are leading to a train wreck".

    KV/SK


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