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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Press and Other Media, 02-07-29

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.142/02 27-28-29.07.02

[A] NEWS ITEMS

  • [01] Statements by the Turkish Cypriot leader before and after meeting President Clerides.
  • [02] Tayyibe Gulek: Turkey's policy on Cyprus will not change after the elections.
  • [03] The Turkish Cypriot side rejects UN involvement in the Cyprus negotiations.
  • [04] Islamist Justice and Development Party leader and deputy leader against concessions in Cyprus.
  • [05] `Magic touch/ needed to salvage Cyprus talks.
  • [06] "The Security Forces General Command" will operate a radio station
  • [B] COMMENTARIES, EDITORIALS AND ANALYSIS

  • [07] Deputy Speaker of the Turkish Parliament warns that Cyprus will have the fate of Hatay if Cyprus accedes to the EU.
  • [08] Bulet Ecevit may use Cyprus and Iraq against early elections.
  • [09] Arif Hasan Tahsin: "If it is not occupation what is it then?"

  • [A] NEWS ITEMS

    [01] Statements by the Turkish Cypriot leader before and after meeting President Clerides

    Illegal Bayrak Radio (26.07.02) broadcast that the Turkish Cypriot leader, Mr Rauf Denktas and President Glafcos Clerides met again today within the framework of the direct talks being held in a bid to solve the Cyprus problem.

    In a statement to the media before the meeting, Denktas said that he will hold a meeting with Clerides today without the participation of the delegations in order to prepare the agendas of future meetings. "We can talk more comfortably and openly on those issues. Therefore, these tete-a-tete meetings were preferred for a few sessions," he said.

    Describing as good news Greek Cypriot press reports to the effect that the military exercise, which according to an earlier announcement was supposed to be held on 8 August, will be held on 7 August, Denktas said that it was first erroneously reported that the exercise was to be held on 8 August.

    In a statement after the meeting that lasted about an hour and a half, Denktas said that he will meet again with Clerides on Tuesday 30 August. He added that at today's meeting the missing persons issue and the Cyprus question in general were discussed. Upon being questioned about the content of the talks, Denktas said: "The fundamental topics were the Turkish Cypriot intention to form a new partnership with the Greek Cypriot administration as one of the sovereign parties and the Greek Cypriot insistence on a single sovereignty. At the talks we continued to discuss how to reconcile and resolve these issues. We shall continue to discuss the missing persons issue on Tuesday as well. No progress has been achieved on the issue. However, it is also good that there has been no setback."

    Upon being reminded by reporters that the sides were previously dwelling on the Belgian model, Denktas replied: "The issue might again be included on the agenda in the event the general question is discussed. However, for the time being this model is not on the agenda. The issue of when to recess the talks will be decided on Tuesday. The general view is to recess the talks for three weeks in August."

    [02] Tayyibe Gulek: Turkey/s policy on Cyprus will not change after the elections

    Illegal Bayrak Radio (26.07.02) broadcast that Tayyibe Gulek, Turkey's state minister responsible for Cyprus affairs, has said that contrary to what the Greek Cypriots say, the solution of the Cyprus problem has nothing to do with the elections in Turkey. She stressed that the Cyprus question is a national state policy for Turkey.

    Hosted on the live "Dossier" program on TRT-2 last night, Gulek asserted that Turkey's national policy on Cyprus will not change after the elections. Referring to the direct talks being conducted by the two leaders in Cyprus, she called on third parties not to intervene in the solution of the problem. She said: "The leaders must be left alone. They must be left to reach a solution between themselves, without outside interference."

    She also stated that the solution process must be kept outside the EU process, adding that the next three to four months must be put to good use.

    [03] The Turkish Cypriot side rejects UN involvement in the Cyprus negotiations

    Illegal Bayrak Radio (26.07.02) broadcast that Tahsin Ertugruloglu, so-called minister of foreign affairs and defence of the pseudostate, has said that if a conciliation is to be reached within the ongoing negotiation process, then this will be achieved by the two sides involved in these negotiations. He stressed that no third party, including the United Nations, has the authority to introduce a solution plan.

    In a statement to the illegal Turkish Cypriot News Agency, Ertugruloglu referred to Cyprus Foreign Minister Mr Ioannis Kasoulides' remarks about a UN solution plan, adding that it is common knowledge to all that the ongoing talks process cannot be continued given such a basis. He recalled the statement Alvaro de Soto, the UN Secretary-General's Cyprus representative, made prior to the direct talks process saying that his role would be that of taking notes and briefing the Secretary- General.

    Pointing out that no third party, including the United Nations, has the right and authority to introduce a solution plan to the negotiating table, Mr Ertugruloglu alleged that Mr Kasoulides is continuing to engage in Greek Cypriot propaganda based on lies and falsehood. He concluded by saying that it is evident that so long as the Cyprus Government is treated as the Cyprus Republic, it will not adapt to the realities.

    [04] Islamist Justice and Development Party leader and deputy leader against concessions in Cyprus

    Pro-Islamic Istanbul KANAL 7 Television (26.07.02) broadcast a studio interview with Justice and Development Party (JDP) leader Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

    Asked how the JDP would be affected should a court prohibit him from running in the next election as a candidate, Erdogan says that if that happens, he would tour the country to campaign for the JDP and to tell people that he was unfairly disqualified from the race. He says: "I believe that the public would notice this unjust treatment and bring the JDP to power with much greater support."

    In response to a question about how he would respond if the United States approached a government led by Erdogan to seek support for a military operation against Iraq, Erdogan says that it is too premature to talk about that possibility. He points out that they do not approve of the authoritarian regime in Iraq, but they are also against bombardment of innocent Iraqi people. He comments: "Furthermore, we have paid and are still paying a dear price for the Gulf War. It cost more than $100 billion and the campaign of terror has escalated in the south-east region especially after the Gulf War, because that region was impoverished mainly due to interruption of border trade. Therefore, people living there have been exploited by the terror organization. In addition, our expectations were not met and we have experienced an economic recession. Turkey should be prevented from going through another economic depression. The government of the day should discuss the details of the operation with the US Administration and debate whether the dispute could be settled by using another method. Such methods excluding the use of the Incirlik Base could probably be devised. Therefore, our competent authorities should first discuss the matter among themselves, and then with the United States before making a decision."

    Asked whether Turkey should intervene if a Kurdish state is established in northern Iraq. Erdogan says: "A Kurdish state has already been founded there de facto. Turkey must assess the situation in the context of conditions prevailing at that time. All those steps should be decided upon prudently."

    Responding to a question whether Turkey's relations with the United States is alternative to its ties with the EU, Erdogan says that he is against making a choice between the United States and the EU. He adds that Turkey should maintain her close relations with both sides as, he says, they are not hostile towards each other. Erdogan also points out that Turkey should improve her relations with her neighbours in order to bring illegal exports to those countries under control.

    Regarding the Cyprus question, Erdogan warns that admission of Cyprus into the EU would definitely create a serious problem. He says: "In that case we would exercise our rights arising from international law and agreements. Cyprus is a very important national issue for us and no concessions should be made there. If the EU admits South Cyprus, we should immediately make our own decision." In response to another question whether that decision would be a radical one, Erdogan hints that Turkey could annex North Cyprus in response.

    Erdogan concludes the interview by saying that they do not expect to have any dispute with the Turkish Armed Forces and pledges to display mutual solidarity and cooperation with the military.

    Meanwhile, Ankara Anatolia News Agency (27.07.02) reported that the Justice and Development Party (JDP) deputy leader Abdullah Gul has said that if so desired the EU bills and the Election Law amendment can be adopted after a decision is reached to hold early elections.

    Noting that it has become definite that a decision will be adopted to hold early elections at the TGNA [Turkish Grand National Assembly] extraordinary session to be held on 29 July, Gul said that legislative work can be conducted after that decision, adding that he does not share the view that bills cannot be passed in the Assembly after the decision to hold early elections.

    Noting that politicians and primarily the people are complaining about the Election Law, Gul continued: "When deputies are elected to the Assembly through this Election Law, they have to be fully obedient to their party leaders."

    Recalling that it was his party that first submitted a package of bills to speed up Turkey's EU membership, Gul said that JDP wants to discuss the issues when an agreement is reached as a package and take up the remaining issues one by one.

    Noting that the most important problem on the path to the EU is Cyprus, Gul continued: "We should all be much more careful with regard to the Cyprus issue. Once a concession is made on Cyprus, then it is impossible to retract it. Certain conjunctures might put us in a difficult position but sensitivity should be shown in a bid to protect our future interests."

    He also said that Cyprus can accede to the EU in line with the Belgian model, a country which is an EU member and which has a two-sector administration.

    Questioned about his opinion on whether party leader Recep Tayyip Erdogan will be a candidate in the elections and on the suits filed against Erdogan, Gul said that the legal and constitutional amendments made during the last legislative period removed the obstacles in front of the leader and added:

    "Although all these facts are clear, if certain decisions based totally on political motives in violation of the law are adopted by force and if obstacles are created, then these will cast a shadow over Turkish democracy. The Turkish people will not accept this and will show its reaction clearly in the ballot box."

    [05] `Magic touch/ needed to salvage Cyprus talks

    Under the above title, Turkish Daily News Sunday Edition "Turkish Probe" (28.07.02), invoking senior diplomatic sources, reports that Washington is considering more direct involvement in the Cyprus talks.

    The report is as follows:

    "The Greek Cypriots/ continual outright refusal to even consider sharing power with Turkish Cypriots in a new "partnership state of Cyprus" on the basis of the "equal sovereignty" of the two politics on the island on the one hand, and the domestic political situation in Ankara on the other, have clouded the prospect of a Cyprus accord, senior diplomatic sources have said.

    The United Nations and Washington are becoming more and more weary of the possible collapse of the Cyprus peace process and have begun considering more direct involvement, which could be the "magic touch" that salvages the process.

    According to well-placed diplomatic sources, fearing that the failure of the Cyprus talks, and the unilateral European Union accession of Greek Cyprus could force Turkey and the Turkish Cypriot side to declare "dead and buried" the Cyprus peace process, Washington has reportedly begun considering a "direct involvement" approach on Cyprus.

    The sources said the United States was particularly worried that if Turkey, under such conditions, were to go ahead with its threat to annex northern Cyprus, such a development could derail the country/s EU bid and push it into isolation, a development that would best serve the "extremist elements" in Turkey and which would not be a "welcome development" for Washington.

    Confining EU accession of the island to the Greek Cypriot sector, and asking the EU to use mild wording at its December summit, where a date is expected to be announced for Greek Cypriot accession, according to the United States, was one option worth considering. Washington was wondering whether an EU statement on Cyprus, which would on the one hand underline that "only the Greek Cypriot state" was being admitted into the EU and that the doors of the EU were open for Turkish Cypriots, and would on the other hand stress the "territorial integrity" of the island, could satisfy the expectations of Turkey and Turkish Cyprus, the source said.

    According to one diplomatic source, if Turkey could complete its homework in time for the EU December summit and could itself get a date for the start of accession talks, a formula for Cyprus might become more attainable.

    "The EU might say that the Turkish Cypriot side could be incorporated into the EU in tandem with Turkish accession and stress that, in the mean time, the Cyprus process was expected to continue with the EU-member Greek Cypriot entity on equal footing," a source said.

    Thus, the sources said, with the encouragement and endorsement of Washington, the United Nations could unveil in the weeks ahead a new "non-paper" that could serve as a "blueprint" for an overall framework agreement on Cyprus.

    Both the Greek Cypriot and the Turkish Cypriot sides on the eastern Mediterranean island, however, appear unreceptive to any such undertaking by the United Nations. While Turkish Cypriots stress their opposition to any "outside interference" in the talks, the Greek Cypriot side announced last week that because of Turkey/s domestic political situation, such a move was doomed to fail and was therefore untimely.

    Indeed, Sukru Sina Gurel/s replacing Ismail Cem at the Turkish Foreign Ministry and looming early elections in November have led to fears that Turkey would start following a tougher line on Cyprus.

    As the Cyprus issue and the EU reforms are expected to be key issues in the polls, the Ecevit-led government is not expected to be receptive to any substantive concession on Cyprus.

    Furthermore, once Turkey decides on a date for early elections next week, and the parties go on the campaign trail, a nationalist rhetoric on Cyprus would become unavoidable, and, even if the Ecevit government wanted an "honourable compromise" on Cyprus, it would not be able to deliver it."

    [06] "The Security Forces General Command" will operate a radio station

    According to VOLKAN (27.07.02) it has been announced that the so-called Security Forces General Command will operate a radio station with the name "Guven (security) Radio". It will start broadcasting as of the first of August 2002.

    [B] COMMENTARIES, EDITORIALS AND ANALYSIS

    [07] Deputy Speaker of the Turkish Parliament warns that Cyprus will have the fate of Hatay if Cyprus accedes to the EU

    Istanbul ORTADOGU newspaper (25.07.02) publishes the following commentary by the Deputy Speaker of the Turkish Grand National Assembly, Mr. Murat Sokmenoglu, under the title: "Cyprus on the anniversary of Hatay's joining Turkey":

    "Certain expansionist and colonialist states once tried to use their divide and rule strategy against [the Turkish province of] Hatay, yet thanks to Ataturk's diplomatic genius and the patriotism and heroism of the people of Hatay, these states' efforts came to naught. Despite all pressures and intrigues, Hatay joined Turkey as a result of a decision made by the National Assembly of the State of Hatay on June 23, 1939 after a struggle that lasted some 20 years. Just as France and the French-controlled Syria cherished hopes of annexing Hatay in the 1920s, so the EU today hankers after an arrangement in Cyprus involving its domination by the Greek Cypriots.

    Moreover, the EU is accusing a hero like Rauf Denktas, who has devoted his entire life to the cause of freedom and independence for the Turkish Cypriots, of displaying an uncompromising stance in the Cyprus negotiations. It should not be forgotten that the Turkish people, who won their War of Independence thanks to their sense of national solidarity, are powerful and adamant enough not to consent to a de facto solution in Cyprus. This has been emphasized several times in declarations issued by the Turkish Grand National Assembly, the President's Office, and the higher echelons of the Turkish military.

    There is no doubt that regardless of which government is in power, Turkey's policies on the Cyprus issue will never change. Turkey has repeatedly and clearly expressed its determination to protect its interests in Cyprus, as witness Commander of the Land Forces Hilmi Ozkok's remark at the Peace 2002 Seminar held in Cyprus recently that the Turkish army is ready to deal with possible developments concerning Cyprus notwithstanding its support for peace initiatives and efforts to introduce a solution and Former Commander of the War Academy Nahit Senogul's statement that Turkey regards Cyprus as its "windpipe" in the Mediterranean and that it will not allow anyone to "squeeze" it.

    In spite of this, the EU administration and particularly [EU Enlargement Commissioner Gunter] Verheugen are virtually trying to blackmail Turkey by continuously talking about admitting the Greek Cypriot side to EU membership. This indicates that it is not realistic to maintain that the Cyprus issue should be treated separately from our relations with the EU. Turkey is under pressure from the EU to step in to introduce a solution to the Cyprus issue, to give up the arguments and policies it has used till now, and to consent to the Greek Cypriots' demands. The EU simply does not understand that no lasting solutions can ever be achieved without an arrangement where it is recognized that there are two different communities on the island, the Turkish Cypriots are given a guarantee of security and acknowledged as politically equal to the Greek side.

    The EU is pretending not to be aware of `TRNC President/ Rauf Denktas' sincere efforts to effect a settlement. It is brazen and hypocritical enough to pretend to be unaware of the Greek Cypriot administration's uncompromising attitude and to try to create discord among the Turkish Cypriots and manipulate the Cypriot youth into believing that Denktas is obstructing the negotiations. The EU simply has to give up this attitude. Otherwise, it will have to face the possibility of developments similar to those that happened in Hatay in 1939. "

    [08] Bulent Ecevit may use Cyprus and Iraq against early elections

    Istanbul Star (25.07.02) publishes the following commentary by Zeynep Gurcanli:

    " Everyone knows now that Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit does not want the holding of elections in 2002. Ecevit is insisting on not holding elections in 2002 so much that he is introducing new arguments against elections almost every day.

    The reasons that Ecevit listed a number of arguments last weekend against holding elections in November had to do with domestic politics. Ecevit argued that JDP [Justice and Development Party] would come to power, HADEP [People's Democracy Party] would enter the parliament and, consequently, the political stability would be disrupted in Turkey if elections were held in autumn this year. Thus, Ecevit conveyed the message that certain circles would become uneasy and the democratic system would be hurt under such circumstances.

    However, politics reached such a stage and all the political parties entered into such a strong election atmosphere that no one is interested in the possibility that JDP may come to power or in the possibility that HADEP may enter the parliament if elections were held in November this year. Ecevit's initiative in this regard returned to him like an echo.

    Meanwhile, Ecevit made an assessment of the situation with his lieutenants, in general, and Sukru Sina Gurel, in particular after NAP [Nationalist Action Party] Leader Devlet Bahceli's warning that he may withdraw from the government if elections are not held in November this year. The participants in the meeting reached the conclusion that elections that may be held in November would have an unfavourable impact on foreign politics. Moreover, the participants in the meeting argued that holding early elections in autumn this year would also affect the country's foreign politics negatively.

    In short, Ecevit introduced the foreign political factors into the developments after his attempts at postponing the elections by citing domestic political factors encountered a deadlock. Looking at the issue from this perspective, it would not be wrong to say that foreign politics and election debates will be mentioned simultaneously in the coming days, for the information received from the anterooms suggest that Ecevit will use his "foreign politics trump card" in the coming days as a weapon against holding early elections in autumn this year.

    Accordingly, the Cyprus and Iraqi issues will be the two trump cards that Ecevit will use against holding early elections in autumn this year. Ecevit will convey the message that the prospects of Turkey remaining "without a government" in autumn this year and the prospects of Turkey being dragged into an atmosphere of elections would serve the interests of Greece and the Greek Cypriots most.

    Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit will also argue that the absence of a government in Turkey would facilitate the entry of the Greek Cypriots into the EU at the end of this year and will explain that Turkey's remaining outside the EU at a time when the Greek Cypriots are granted EU membership would prompt the closing of the EU doors before Turkey permanently.

    The Prime Minister will also convey a similar message about a military operation that the United States may likely launch against Iraq. Ecevit will stress that the absence of a government in Turkey during the US operation on toppling the Saddam regime would put our country in a difficult situation, that a Turkey without a government during this operation would sustain economic losses, and that the absence of a government during this operation may even lead to the establishment of a Kurdish state in northern Iraq.

    Meanwhile, there is an important point that must be underlined: Sukru Sina Gurel became the closest individual to Ecevit after Husamettin Ozkan left Ecevit's party. Gurel assumed responsibility of the duties of two names that left Ecevit, mainly, the duties of Minister of Foreign Affairs Ismail Cem and Deputy Prime Minister Husamettin Ozkan.

    As required by his career before entering politics, Gurel worked in the foreign politics field more than working in the domestic politics field. Consequently, it is not surprising at all that Ecevit entrusted the foreign negotiations to Gurel.

    There is another point to stress on, mainly, the fact that Ecevit was the most popular name in Turkey during the Cyprus Peace Operation era when he was named Karaoglan [nickname for Ecevit after a mythical hero].

    What do you think?

    Would it be a dream if we envisage that the "old wolf" may seek to revive the story of the "conqueror of Cyprus" or to add the name "the conqueror of Kirkuk" to his titles at the end of his political life? "

    [09] Arif Hasan Tahsin: ''If it is not occupation what is it then?''

    Arif Hasan Tahsin writing in AFRIKA (27.07.02) describes Turkey's presence in the occupied area as occupation.

    Replying to comments by Dogan Harman of KIBRISLI newspaper, Tahsin, inter alia, says: "Is it not a fact that Turkey has occupied all the institutions in the north of Cyprus and established a puppet regime there?'' If the creation of a situation like this in a country, in a state, which is a member of the UN, by another country, is not an occupation, what is it then? A conquest? Or?.

    Which laws gave the right to Turkey to bring in people from Turkey and give them voting rights to usurp the free will of the Turkish Cypriots?

    Is there any legal framework that deprives the Turkish Cypriots of their Cypriot citizenship in accordance with the international laws?

    From where does Turkey get the right and the authority to replace the Cyprus Pound with the Turkish Lira and cut the foreign aid to the Turkish Cypriots? Or give the right to the Turkish citizens to acquire title deeds for land belonging to Cypriots?

    As the case is this, what else can one call the people of such a country, other than slaves?"


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