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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Press and Other Media, 02-09-02

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.166/02 31.08.02-1-2.09.02


  • [01] Statements by the Turkish Cypriot leader before and after meeting President Clerides under the UN auspices.
  • [02] Mehmet Ali Talat calls on Denktas to move towards a solution in Cyprus.
  • [03] Tansu Ciller accuses the Turkish government for its Cyprus policy. Reaction by Bulent Ecevit.
  • [04] The Turkish Cypriots are being prepared to emigrate in case Turkey annexes the occupied part of Cyprus; more settlers are to be brought to the island.
  • [05] Denktas says pressure is starting in the Cyprus talks.
  • [06] The majority of the Turkish Cypriots are pessimistic regarding the solution of the Cyprus problem.
  • [07] To Common Vision of the 90 civilian organizations to be explained in Turkey.

  • [08] Columnist in RADIKAL newspaper assesses the latest developments in the Cyprus problem in the light of Ugur Ziyal/s visit to Washington.
  • [09] Ilter Turkmen focuses on the ideologies of Turkish political parties and their stand towards Cyprus.


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

    Ankara Anatolia News Agency (30.08.02) reported that the Turkish Cypriot leader, Mr Rauf Denktas and President Glafcos Clerides came together in the buffer zone in Cyprus on Friday in the framework of the sixth round of direct talks, under the UN auspices.

    Speaking to reporters before the meeting, Denktas said that they would discuss the issue of ``citizenship`` upon request of Clerides, adding: ``We don`t have any complaint about our citizenship.``

    Recalling the citizenship rights of cantons in Switzerland, Denktas said that a person who is granted canton citizenship also becomes a citizen of Switzerland.

    ``We can discuss what new principles would be for citizenship, of course. However, our citizenship and citizenship rights can`t be a matter of discussion,`` Denktas added.

    KIBRIS (31.08.02) reports that in statements after the meeting Mr Denktas said that the next meeting will take place on Tuesday September 3 during which discussion on the issue of citizenship will continue.

    [02] Mehmet Ali Talat calls on Denktas to move towards a solution in Cyprus

    Illegal Bayrak Radio (31.08.02) broadcast that Mehmet Ali Talat, leader of the Republican Turkish Party [RTP] has stated that the pseudostate officials are not solving the economic problems, that they are making false promises, and pursuing policies that lead nowhere.

    In a statement he issued today, Talat pointed out that all the sectors are suffering economically while the pseudo-government cannot come up with any solutions.

    Talat added that it is Rauf Denktas who is responsible for the current economic structure, which, he claimed, cannot be defended in any way. This is where our joint economic policy with Turkey led us to, he said, stressing that the joint policy will not lead to economic development.

    Talat also stated that if Rauf Denktas wants to solve the economic problems, then he must move toward a solution in Cyprus and toward membership in the EU.

    Meanwhile, the RTP occupied Kyrenia District organization staged a demonstration today, protesting the economic crisis, the high prices, and the economic package being implemented. Participating in the protest march were Omer Kalyoncu, RTP Kyrenia branch leader, and other party members.

    The march began in front of the Kyrenia Municipality and ended in front of Dorana Hotel. The demonstrators carried placards faulting the "government" and the economic package, and calling for a solution in Cyprus as well as membership in the EU.

    In a speech at the end of the march, Kalyoncu criticized the economic crisis and the economic package, and stressed that the Turkish Cypriots can no longer bear all this. Kalyoncu accused the "government" of indifference toward the developments and of incompetence. He warned that unless there are changes in policy, the protests and reactions will grow in the coming days.

    Kalyoncu stressed the importance of the Cyprus meeting to be held in Paris on 6 September, and called on all citizens to participate in the peace rally to be held on 5 September.

    [03] Tansu Ciller accuses the Turkish government for its Cyprus policy. Reaction by Bulent Ecevit

    Istanbul NTV television (30.08.02) broadcast that True Path Party (TPP) leader Tansu Ciller said that the formulas to change the government turned into scenarios to postpone the elections, and added: "The TPP will not take part in this game. Ciller also reacted to the Cyprus discussion, which began with Devlet Bahceli's remarks." She stated: "Unfortunately, this government is handing Cyprus over. We are not doing so. Cyprus is being sacrificed."

    Replying to Murat Akgun's questions on a live program on NTV, Ciller made a concluding remark regarding the recent discussion in the political corridors on the efforts to overthrow the government and postpone the elections.

    She said: "The elections will be held on 3 November. If necessary, let us proceed to the elections with the current government, but let us not change the date. If this nation can rid itself of this government, well and good, but if the efforts to this end are to include scenarios to postpone the elections, we will not be a part of this."

    Ciller stressed that especially in this critical period, the government should be changed, and added:

    "Turkey should not proceed to the elections with this government. There are very critical periods ahead -- there is Cyprus. Unfortunately, it is this government that is handing over Cyprus. We are not giving it away. It is our concern that Cyprus is being sacrificed."

    In response to Deputy Prime Minister Bahceli's accusations that certain parties want to establish a government in order to sell Cyprus down the river, Ciller stated: "It is the very people who are in government now who are letting Cyprus slip through their fingers."

    Ciller issued a three-tier election alliance call on behalf of the TPP, She said: "We are calling on the nation. Come and find stability in the ballot box. Moreover, we have a call at another level. It is directed at the disgruntled, at those who detached themselves from us for one reason or another. Come let us unite, let us march again together. This is integration on an individual level. We want another kind of integration at a third level. If parties that are very close to one another and that come from the same roots can come together under the same roof, this would be something that the people are seeking. We have claims to this, too."

    Replying by telephone to the questions of NTV Ankara representative Murat Akgun, the same day, the Turkish Prime Minister Mr Bulent Ecevit, harshly criticized Ciller's remarks.

    Ecevit said: "Mrs Ciller harped on the theme that Cyprus is being handed over. This has nothing whatsoever to do with the reality. A government headed by me would most probably not attempt to sacrifice Cyprus. If Mrs Ciller insists on these claims, the morale of the Turkish Cypriots could be affected. The morale of our citizens here could also be affected. Moreover, the EU leadership could get its hopes high. Mrs Ciller does not have the right to raise such an issue that is not related to the reality. I take great issue with her attitude."

    The prime minister also reacted against Nationalist Action Party (NAP) leader Devlet Bahceli's statement on Cyprus.

    Ecevit noted: "There is no need to harp on this theme unnecessarily. In actual fact, there are good developments pertaining to Cyprus. The number of circles that are coming to accept the reality that there are two separate states in Cyprus -- even if they do not pronounce it -- is increasing all the time. This situation can be felt in the talks."

    Ecevit also commented on Ciller's arriving at the point that the present government will lead the country to the elections.

    He stated: "This is not the time for a government change. There is confusion. As was the case in the previous government, parties that were unable to agree among themselves had entrusted the government in us even though we were a minority government. Once again now, none of them are able to do anything. Anyway, it is not as though anything can be done, only two months before the elections."

    [04] The Turkish Cypriots are being prepared to emigrate in case Turkey annexes the occupied part of Cyprus; more settlers are to be brought to the island

    AFRIKA (02.09.02) reports that "deep indignation" has been aroused within the Turkish Cypriot community because of Turkey's plan to annex the occupied areas of Cyprus and adds that the Turkish Cypriots are being prepared to emigrate form the island.

    The paper accuses Turkey of blocking the way of the Turkish Cypriots towards a solution and joining the EU and wonders, "for how long will the United Nations and the EU ignore the fact that Turkey keeps the Turkish Cypriots as hostage for the sake of its own strategic interests". Noting that Turkey intents to bring into Cyprus more settlers to replace the Turkish Cypriots who will be emigrating, AFRIKA "warns" the UN Secretary-General about the following, only a few days before the 6 September meeting in Paris:

    "The preconditions which Denktas lays on the table are not the views of the Turkish Cypriots. They are the preconditions of Ankara. The sovereignty demanded, is not the sovereignty of the Turkish Cypriots. The intention is to represent the sovereignty of Turkey here.

    The overwhelming majority of our people, the voice of whom is being silenced by exerting oppression and violence, is in favour of a federal solution and accession to the EU. No one wants unification with Turkey, except Denktas and his circles, who looted Cyprus!

    In case Turkey makes steps towards annexing northern Cyprus, the emigration from the island will be intensified. The citizens became more hopeless after Denktas' statement that in case Cyprus is accepted into the EU, the `Foreign Affairs and Defense Ministry/ of the `TRNC/ and its finance affairs will be tuned over to Ankara. They began preparing their luggage saying that 'there is no life for us in this stockyard.

    Turkey, which estimates that the Turkish Cypriots will abandon the island, continues to bring in population in the island in large numbers in order to replace those who will go. .".

    [05] Denktas says pressure is starting in the Cyprus talks

    Under the front - page banner title "Pressure is starting", KIBRIS (01.09.02) publishes an interview with Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktas who expressed his views and expectations regarding the 6 September Paris meeting of the two leaders of the communities in Cyprus with the UN Secretary - General Kofi Annan. Noting that the foreign diplomats, who will separately meet the two leaders, came to the island in order to exert pressure, Mr Denktas alleges, inter alia, the following:

    ".The pressure is starting. There is something I cannot understand. We speak in such a clear way. The worth of what is given to us on the paper, is equal to the worth of the paper, they are written on. We have tried this and for 39 years we have been in pain for this. .What will happen in Paris? They will put side by side the things they think we have adopted and say: 'there is agreement on these issues. It is time to move forward'. I will repeat to those who will come as well. Everything we seem to have agreed upon is not agreed if it is not based on the equal sovereignty. We discuss on the basis of the equal sovereignty. .".

    Responding to those who oppose the annexation of the occupied areas in case the Republic of Cyprus becomes a full member of the EU without a solution to its political problem, Mr Denktas said that he does not refer to annexation but to an integration, which means further cooperation and added:

    "What harm could it make to you and why do you oppose to our making the same cooperation with the Mother Land which has accepted our sovereignty and defends it until today? I cannot understand this. The years will pass and you too will enter the EU when Turkey does. The unification will happen then. However, by that time it is a trick to have direct contacts with the EU on economic issues, to disrupt and grant us aid. .The authorities, to which we say these things from now, show understanding. .". In reply to a question, Mr Denktas said: "Turkey has rights. All the rights given to Turkey in the 1960 agreements are permanent. These cannot be ignored. .From the beginning of the talks we said no to the use of words to which the sides have a kind of allergy. We said we would use neutral words. We said common state, component states instead of constituent states. .However, we registered that when we say component states we want to say constituent states. .We have to talk openly. A partnership will be created, a partnership between the two equally sovereign sides. Do you accept this or not? If you do, then let us talk. The rest are details and can be solved easily. .".

    Commenting on some articles in the Turkish Press that Turkey "is losing Cyprus" and the answers given to them that "Turkey will not give up Cyprus," Mr Denktas argued that one will not win the elections in Turkey by saying that he will give up Cyprus and added: ".Cyprus is a vital issue for Turkey, from the geopolitical point of view. Even two days ago in his speech, general Kivrikoglu reminded and stressed the importance of the Cyprus issue for Turkey. Mr Ecevit repeats his views on Cyprus and, as I said, I do not see a party, which will go to the elections saying 'let us give Cyprus away' . This is a great power for us, a great source of power".

    [06] The majority of the Turkish Cypriots are pessimistic regarding the solution of the Cyprus problem

    KIBRIS (02.09. 02) reports that, according to the results of a poll conducted by the Foreign Press Union in the occupied areas, the majority of the Turkish Cypriots are pessimistic regarding the issue of finding a solution to the Cyprus problem. The poll began on 1 August on the Internet website of the Union. 52 % of the 238 participants in the poll answered "no" to the question "are you optimistic regarding the face-to-face talks in Cyprus?". 48 % answered positively to this question.

    Meanwhile, Turkish Cypriot leader, Rauf Denktas refused to participate in the poll and said that the "question is insufficient". "If I voted I would say 'no' under the circumstances which exist today", he continued.

    [07] To Common Vision of the 90 civilian organizations to be explained in Turkey

    KIBRIS (01.09.02) reports that the Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Commerce will visit Turkey in order to explain the Common Vision of the 90 Turkish Cypriot civilian organizations regarding the solution of the Cyprus problem and Cyprus' accession to the EU.


    [08] Columnist in RADIKAL newspaper assesses the latest developments in the Cyprus problem in the light of Ugur Ziyal/s visit to Washington

    Istanbul RADIKAL newspaper (30.08.02) publishes the following commentary by Murat Yetkin under the title: "Ankara: 'No guarantees have been given concerning Iraq'":

    " Iraqi Kurdish leader [Jalal] Talabani's remark that the United States has given a guarantee that Turkey will not enter Iraq has been denied. Turkish Foreign Minister Sukru Sina Gurel has said that such a guarantee has been given neither to the United States nor to anyone else.

    Gurel said the following about Talabani's controversial statement at our meeting yesterday: "No guarantees have been given to either the United States or to anyone else. It is not as if we wanted this country to occupy Iraq and that country not to occupy it. We are saying that no country's troops should enter Iraq. We are trying to make sure that the problem is solved without a military intervention."

    Gurel made this remark following the meetings that Foreign Ministry officials held with Iraqi Kurdistan Democratic Party [KDP] representative Hoshyar Zebari. The Turkish Foreign Minister said that they found the KDP's policies more compatible with what Turkey wants than those of the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan [PUK], which is led by Talabani. What Turkey wants is a solution that does not have any implications for Iraq's territorial integrity. In other words, Turkey does not approve a Kurdish state in northern Iraq.

    Turkey repeatedly announced before that it would use all means at its disposal including a military option to prevent such a possibility from actualizing.

    According to information provided by Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Gurel, Undersecretary of the Foreign Ministry Ugur Ziyal has been getting across this message to the United States for some time. Ziyal has been holding meetings with high level officials in the United States for days. Among those whom he has met so far are US Vice President Dick Cheney, the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff [Richard] Myers, and Deputy Secretary of State [Marc] Grossman.

    Interestingly enough, Ziyal is not only discussing the Iraq issue with US government officials but also the Cyprus issue.

    Subtitle: Is the Iraq-Cyprus bargaining going on?

    In a statement published in the July 21 edition of RADIKAL, Gurel said that at Turkey's instigation the Cyprus issue had been included in the negotiations between Ankara and Washington over a possible US military operation against Iraq. Gurel explained the new situation that had emerged in the wake of Grossman and Deputy Defense Secretary [Paul] Wolfowitz' visits to Ankara, thus: "Since we are strategic partners with the United States, we should openly discuss our interests and intentions regarding northern Iraq. Strategic partnership includes all issues. Just in the same way as the United States defends its national interests so we believe our national interests particularly in relation with the Cyprus issue to be of paramount importance for the happiness of the Turkish people."

    I asked Gurel yesterday whether this formula was still valid, namely the understanding "we will support you in Iraq and you will support us in Cyprus." Gurel said, "Let us not call it a formula. Let us say that this approach is still valid. We do not want to be the obedient party anymore. We want what we are saying to be heeded. For example, we want what we are saying concerning Cyprus to be heeded. If there is a strategic partnership between us and the United States, this should include everything."

    All this explains why the Cyprus issue has been high on Ankara's agenda for days. Pointed statements are being issued ahead of the Denktas-Clerides meeting that will take place at the invitation of UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan in Paris on September 6. General Huseyin Kivrikoglu said at the ceremony on August 28 marking his replacement as Chief of the General Staff that for the Turkish Cypriots not to be treated as equals was unacceptable. [Turkish Cypriot Leader Rauf] Denktas, `TRNC Prime Minister/ Dervis Eroglu and Turkish Foreign Minister Sukru Sina Gurel, who were all at the ceremony, held a meeting with Prime Minister Ecevit in the evening the same day. After the meeting, Denktas issued statements to the following effect: ""If there is no solution, we will let Turkey take over the `TRNC's Foreign Ministry, Defence Ministry, and the Ministry of Finance/." Yesterday morning, Nationalist Action Party [NAP] Leader Devlet] Bahceli accused True Path Party (TPP) Leader Tansu Ciller Motherland Party (MP) Leader Mesut Yilmaz and the New Turkey Party [NTP] and the Felicity Party [FP] of trying to overthrow the Government in a bid to cede Cyprus to Greece.

    One development amidst all this has failed to receive the attention it deserves: While Ziyal was continuing to hold meetings in the United States and official statements were being made, Greek Foreign Minister George Papandreou called Gurel at about 14:30 on August 28 to say: "We have been observing very favourable changes in Turkey and we will support the commencement of full membership negotiations between Turkey and the EU if Turkey fulfils the requirements of the Copenhagen Criteria." What Papandreou said amounted to stating that Athens did not regard the solution of the Cyprus issue as a prerequisite for the commencement of full membership negotiations between Turkey and the EU.

    Gurel said: "I must say this is a pleasing development." However, it is too early to make conclusive assessments. New developments are in the offing."

    [02] Ilter Turkmen focuses on the ideologies of Turkish political parties and their stand towards Cyprus

    Istanbul HURRIYET newspaper (31.08.02) publishes the following commentary by Ilter Turkmen under the title: "According to what shall we vote?": "Under normal conditions, when making their preferences, electors assess the ideologies, the leaders, the cadres, and the programs of the parties.

    When we look at the parties in Turkey from the ideological standpoint, we see that this characteristic is very influential in parties that define themselves as leftist. After Kemal Dervis, whose love for the left wing is rather platonic, joined the RPP [Republican People's Party], other parties that adopt different lines initiated the race of "who is more leftist." Prime Minister Ecevit pushed away certain people and called upon the "national left" to unite under the roof of the DLP [Democratic Left Party]. Sukru Sina Gurel, who in addition to assuming the roles of foreign minister and state minister, also assumed the role of the DLP's theoretician, firmly rejected the liberal left concept and accused those who adopt this view of lacking a "national understanding." This means that the DLP intends to abandon the policies that it has pursued in the coalition so far.

    Furthermore, it means that the DLP will adopt a more radical identity and that it will go back to its 1987 theses. After Dervis changed camps, the NTP [New Turkey Party] has adopted a more intensive leftist image. It has been careful, however, to maintain its liberal openings.

    The leftist parties have always been after new labels. In her book entitled "The State Art," former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher said the following: "The socialists have always looked for new names to define their beliefs." In the past, social democracy was a part of Marxism. Later, it became "democratic socialism." When socialism was no longer popular, on the other hand, "social democracy" once again became respectable. Everyone believed that Blair's "third way" was the middle way between socialism and capitalism. Blair did not agree with this, however. He claimed that the "third way" is "renewed social democracy." Never being adopted by Schroeder, this definition is no longer popular. Instead, a new term is being used: "Progressive governance." Despite the fact that Thatcher was a capitalist, her remarks are more interesting and more enlightening.

    Despite the fact that it is not a leftist party, the NAP [Nationalist Action Party] has wide ideological grass roots. The NAP has let itself get deeply involved with a reactionary and nostalgic nationalism that is based on seclusion. Despite all the claims of the JDP [Justice and Development Party] leader, on the other hand, only time will show if this party has truly changed its political philosophy. Currently, it is very difficult for us to forget the JDP leader's former remarks.

    In general, the image reflected by the party leaders has a great impact on the preferences of the voters. In the television era, it is no longer adequate to be skilful. Charisma is also necessary. These leaders' appearances are of utmost importance in the debates and discussions broadcast on television channels. Unfortunately however, charisma can sometimes camouflage lack of skill. The cadres are as important as the leaders. When you look at them from this standpoint, it is possible to say that compared with other parties, certain parties are more satisfactory. Regarding the programs, except for the TPP's [True Path Party] quite comprehensive economic program, the parties have not yet presented their programs to the public. They all make a great number of promises however. No one knows how they intend to fulfil these promises.

    It is noteworthy that very few politicians are talking about foreign politics on the eve of the elections. Yes, everyone is referring to the EU in one way or another, but no one wants to refer to the Cyprus issue, which constitutes a key factor in the EU process. If the elections will really be held on 3 November and if a solution is not found in Cyprus by then, the new government might have to face the accomplished fact of the Greek Cypriot Administration's EU membership. It is obvious that this will create many problems in terms of Turkey's relations with the EU. The current government is not able to understand that none of the solution proposals will fully satisfy Turkey and the `TRNC/ and that there is no choice, other than choosing the least evil option. If we do not abandon this mind blockage without any delay, Turkey will have to pay a heavy price for many years. There is an additional side to this story. There are rumours to the effect that prior to the elections, the government will try to impose pressure on the EU by accelerating the integration process between Turkey and the `TRNC /. Such a leap will refute the `TRNC's/ sovereignty argument and will create difficulties in the EU process. Furthermore, it will paralyze the new government. Within the framework of their election enthusiasm, our political parties should also pay attention to Cyprus. It is not enough to win in the elections. It is also necessary to deal with the problems in the aftermath of the elections".

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