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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Press and Other Media, 02-10-25

Cyprus Press and Information Office: Turkish Cypriot Press Review Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Republic of Cyprus Press and Information Office Server at <http://www.pio.gov.cy/>

TURKISH PRESS AND OTHER MEIA No.204/02 25.10.02

[A] NEWS ITEMS

  • [01] The Turkish Cypriot leader has started to be briefed on developments in the Cyprus problem.
  • [02] The Turkish Foreign Ministry assures that Rauf Denktas/ health will not cause problems in the search for a solution in Cyprus.
  • [03] Opposing views between the pseudogovernment and the Communal Liberation Party on the issue of illegal workers in the occupied areas.
  • [04] UN Secretary-General's Special Advisor for Cyprus says bridging the differences between the sides is possible.
  • [05] The United Cyprus Party held a meeting with the Republican Turkish Party.
  • [06] US Greek Orthodox delegation lambastes Turkish government for not reopening seminary
  • [07] German foundations in Turkey charged with clandestine activities.
  • [08] Copies of daily HURRIYET seized by the authorities.
  • [B] COMMENTARIES, EDITORIALS AND ANALYSIS

  • [09] Columnist in CUMHURIYET says Greece is following a wise policy vis-a-vis Turkey/s EU membership.

  • [A] NEWS ITEMS

    [01] The Turkish Cypriot leader has started to be briefed on developments in the Cyprus problem

    Illegal Bayrak Radio (24.10.02) broadcast that the Turkish Cypriot leader, Mr Rauf Denktas, who underwent a heart surgery in New York, is reported to be in good condition and is being briefed on the Cyprus developments. In a statement to the illegal BRT, his adviser Ergun Olgun said that Denktas is doing much better today compared with yesterday, adding: "We have begun to brief him on the developments concerning the Cyprus issue to enable him to continue his duties as negotiator."

    Denktas' health is steadily improving. Olgun said: "He is doing well. He is much better today. At the moment, the issue of when he will be discharged from the hospital is being discussed. He might be discharged on the weekend or at the beginning of next week." Olgun added that they have begun to brief Denktas on the Cyprus developments to enable him to continue his duties as negotiator.

    In reply to a question, Olgun said that Denktas will remain in New York some ten days after he is discharged from hospital so that he is ready to endure a long flight. Olgun continued: "The necessary effort is being shown to speedily revive the negotiation process. The honourable Mumtaz Soysal and I are planning to be in Cyprus next week to initiate the activities of the committees in line with the instructions of the `president/".

    On the other hand, Istanbul CNN TURK Television (24.10.02) broadcast that Ergun Olgun has said that Rauf Denktas' health is improving with each passing day. Replying to CNN TURK correspondent's questions in New York, Olgun stressed that the Cyprus talks cannot resume before eight weeks.

    Ergun Olgun pointed out that Denktas/ recovery following the 7 October surgery continues normally, and added:

    "If the recuperation progresses slowly, that is, if the process of the body's recovery goes a little more slowly, then this might make a difference of a few days. Such a margin does exist. We can expect the `president/ to leave the hospital for the hotel next week. This is not a definite date. We do not know what day exactly. After he leaves the hospital, we shall wait for him to reach a stage where he can take a plane. That will probably take about one week or ten days."

    According to Ergun Olgun, Rauf Denktas will be able to resume the Cyprus talks only after a few weeks.

    "After a period of eight weeks, we can have a date for the start of the Cyprus talks with the participation of Denktas. The venue of the talks will be determined later. Due to Denktas' health, the talks are more likely to be held in Europe, and not in the United States", Olgun said.

    [02] The Turkish Foreign Ministry assures that Rauf Denktas/ health will not cause problems in the search for a solution in Cyprus

    Ankara Anatolia News Agency (24.10.02) reported from Ankara that the Turkish Foreign Ministry said on Wednesday that Rauf Denktas is getting better, adding that Denktas` absence in this period won`t cause any problem in finding a solution for the Cyprus problem.

    Foreign Ministry Spokesman Yusuf Buluc said in a weekly press briefing that they closely monitor the developments about the medical condition of Denktas, adding: ``Even if Denktas is not at the negotiation table, he still has the power and will to give a direction to the negotiations. There should not be any hesitation about it.``

    Buluc said that the periods in which Denktas will not actively participate in the negotiations actively due to health reasons, will be assessed by the studies of the two technical subcommittees decided to be founded during the talks in New York.

    ``The process advances on its own dynamics. The possibility of the Greek Cypriot side`s accession to the EU is still a possibility. Certain circles set up a connection between the decision to be taken by the EU in this issue and the negotiation programme. Our approach is that a lasting and comprehensive solution has to be reached without time pressure. If there is such a time schedule, this is not the time schedule of us. Therefore, Turkey does not feel under pressure by that,`` he said.

    [03] Opposing views between the pseudogovernment and the Communal Liberation Party on the issue of illegal workers in the occupied areas

    Under the title "The riddle of illegal workers", KIBRIS newspaper (19.10.02) publishes a report on the discussions held in the pseudo-assembly the previous day on the issue of the illegal workers, who arrive in the occupied areas from mainland Turkey.

    The discussion took place between the so-called Assembly member of the Communal Liberation Party (CLP), Mr Tashin Mertekci and the so-called Minister of Interior, Village Affairs and Housing, Mr Mehmet Albayrak.

    Mr Mertekci raised the issue off the agenda because as he said, efforts are under way to legitimize the illegal workers when the young Turkish Cypriots emigrate because of unemployment.

    He also accused the pseudogovernment of not following a comprehensive policy and of giving out false data on their number.

    "Although official sources say their number is 18 thousand in my view they are between 30-40 thousand," he said.

    Responding to Mr Mertekci the so-called Minister of Interior, Village Affairs and Housing said: "The registered number of foreign workers are estimated at about seven thousand while the number of illegal workers is about 18-20 thousand".

    He also said that the number of illegal workers can be established by the difference between arrivals and departures. Furthermore, he said that these people, who do not have any social security and who have poor working conditions, are a burden on the medical system.

    Albayrak added that the employment opportunities of the Turkish Cypriots are restricted by the illegal workers who are cheap labour and who are also a burden on the economy.

    [04] UN Secretary-General's Special Advisor for Cyprus says bridging the differences between the sides is possible

    KIBRIS (25.10.02) reports that Mr Alvaro de Soto, UN Secretary-General's Special Advisor for Cyprus, has said that there is a deep gap between the positions of the Greek Cypriot and the Turkish Cypriot sides regarding the solution to the Cyprus problem, but at the same time he added that the differences could be bridged.

    Talking last night on the "Platform" programme of KIBRIS TV, Mr de Soto noted that he could say that there is a difference between what is said behind closed doors at the talks and the statements made publicly. I think this is good, he argued.

    "My optimism is based on a serious assessment of the basic interests, fears and anxieties of all the sides concerned", said Mr de Soto expressing the opinion that a solution could be reached within the next couple of months.

    Replying to questions Mr de Soto repeated that the UN have not submitted any solution plan to the sides and noted that he had discussed every issue of the Cyprus problem "in a systematic way" during his visits to Athens and Ankara. Mr de Soto described as "very important" Turkey's and Greece's role in the process of finding a solution to the Cyprus problem. Therefore, these contacts had really been very useful, he added, expressing his satisfaction about the distance covered during his meetings in Athens and Ankara.

    Commenting on the opinion that there was no concrete result from the Paris and New York meetings of the UN Secretary-General with the two leaders, Mr de Soto said: "I think that it would not be right for me to say that there was not much progress. The fact that the two leaders agreed on the creation of two technical committees is a sign that they understand that the solution of the Cyprus problem is not simple, that a series of more complex agreements and a number of detailed work are needed and that the new situation after the solution, the new administrative institution should be able to function right after a solution is reached and approved through the referenda".

    Mr de Soto said also that the non-existence of legal vacuities and ambiquities and the immediate implementation of the solution was important. Therefore, the UN are not feeling good with the fact that the technical committees have not been yet established and begun to work.

    Mr de Soto said that he could not describe the EU Summit in Copenhagen as a deadline for the solution to the Cyprus problem, but he repeated that there is a good chance for reaching a solution within the next couple of months.

    [05] The United Cyprus Party held a meeting with the Republican Turkish Party

    YENIDUZEN (25.10.02) reports that the newly established United Cyprus Party (UCP) held a meeting yesterday with the Republican Turkish Party (RTP), in the framework of contacts with the other political parties of the pseudostate. In the meeting the General Secretary of UCP, Izzet Izcan, had a discussion with the chairman of the RTP, Mehmet Ali Talat, regarding the Cyprus problem and the economic and social problems of the pseudostate.

    On his part Mr Talat noted that due to Mr Rauf Denktas/ illness, it is reasonable for the appointment of a new negotiator for the Cyprus talks to be considered. He also added that this issue would be discussed in meetings with political parties of the pseudostate in the next days, in order to see what can be done.

    Mr Talat also stressed that time is running short regarding the Cyprus problem.

    [06] US Greek Orthodox delegation lambastes Turkish government for not reopening seminary

    Turkish Daily News (24.10.02) publishes the following report by Esra Aygin: The head of a U.S. Greek Orthodox delegation on Tuesday accused Turkey of treating Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew I, the leader of the world's Orthodox Christians, as a "second-class" citizen. Anthony Limberakis, the national commander of the Order of St. Andrew, also said Turkey must open the Halki Greek Orthodox Theological School, which was closed in 1971 by the Turkish government.

    "It is an infringement of our rights as American citizens to worship in America when our own spiritual father cannot freely ... conduct his ministry ... and when we cannot educate our clergy at the Halki school," Limberakis said while visiting Halki.

    "Quite frankly, we are tired of the Turkish government treating the spiritual father of 300 million Orthodox faithful as a second-class citizen," said Limberakis.

    "There is great diversity and religious freedom in the U.S.," he said. "And we expect no less from the Turkish government."

    Turkey refuses to recognize Bartholomew as the leader of Orthodox Christianity. It considers him only the head of the Turkey's tiny Greek Orthodox community.

    The Turkish government, Limberakis said, has asked him not to call himself the Ecumenical Patriarch.

    Limberakis also expressed anger that Turkey has different laws for property owned by Muslims and religious minorities.

    Many of today's Greek Orthodox leaders, including Bartholomew, were trained at the school, which was closed under a law that put military and religious education under state control.

    Bartholomew said that he "would like only to be remembered as the patriarch who was able to reopen Halki." The U.S ambassador to Turkey, Robert Pearson, who accompanied the delegation to the seminary, said that Washington supported the reopening of Halki. "The U.S. continues to encourage Turkey ... to let the light shine forth once again here from Halki," Pearson said. The European Union, which Turkey aspires to join, has also called on Turkey to reopen the seminary.

    The Ecumenical Patriarchate in Istanbul dates from the Orthodox Greek Byzantine Empire, which collapsed when the Muslim Ottoman Turks conquered the city in 1453. Istanbul, then called Constantinople, was the capital of the Byzantine empire, and thus the heart of Greek culture for more than 1,000 years.

    Although few Greek Orthodox Christians remain in overwhelmingly Muslim Turkey today, Bartholomew's patriarchate is still based in Istanbul and directly controls several Greek Orthodox churches around the world.

    [07] German foundations in Turkey charged with clandestine activities

    Under the above title Turkish Daily News (25.10.02) reports that according to an Ankara State Security Court indictment, there is serious evidence showing that activities of German foundations in Turkey are tantamount to an activity of "legal espionage".

    The paper reports that the State Security Court (DGM) in Ankara indictment charged German foundations in Turkey with "clandestine activities against security of the Turkish state", seeking up to 15 years in jail for executives of these foundations and some Turkish nationals allegedly cooperating with them in undercover activities.

    Konrad Adaneur Foundation Turkey Representative Wulf Schonbohm, Heinrich Boell Foundation Turkey Representative Figen Fatma Ugur, Frederich Ebert Foundation Chairman Hans Schumaher, Frederich Noumann Foundation Turkey Representative Wolfgang Sachsenroeder are accused in the indictment of "secret alliance against the security of state", under Article 171 of the Turkish Penal Code (TPC).

    The 72-page indictment has been prepared by former Ankara DGM Chief Prosecutor (CP) Nuh Mete Yuksel, who was sacked from this post earlier this week after exposure to the public of a sex scandal. A higher panel of judges confirmed that a videotape showing him together with a woman was not fake.

    In addition to foundations' executives, Oktay Konyar, a representative for a group of residents from the Aegean town of Bergama protesting a transnational company that attempted to use cyanide while extracting gold in the hills of the town, former Mayor of Bergama Safa Taskin and former Istanbul Bar/s Association Chairman Yucel Sayman are also implicated in the indictment.

    "German political foundations have been assigned to carry out activities against the integrity of our country and the secular republic and have formed an alliance with their Turkish partners," said Yuksel's indictment.

    It said these foundations were professing to be nongovernmental organizations, but they were indeed "an effective tool of German foreign policy", sponsored by the German state.

    "These foundations will help Germany attain its long-term political goals in developing countries but they will not have to abide by set methods for official foreign policy activities," it said and added that foundations intervened in internal affairs of countries they are operating in.

    "For instance, supporting a certain political party or opposition groups is not something that diplomatic representatives can do. State-foundation mechanism is introduced precisely for this purpose. The objective is to forge ties with regime opponents and political risk will be kept low in this way."

    It went on to say: "It is clear that German party foundations, despite the fact that they are attached to different political parties, are state NGOs carrying out political activities under supervision of German ambassadors. That their activities are meant to intervene in domestic affairs of a country and even to gain influence over the administration of the country they operate has been admitted by these foundations' executives."

    According to the CP indictment, there is serious evidence showing that these activities are tantamount to an activity of "legal espionage." It said a German organization called FIAN worked effectively to organize a protest of Bergama's residents against gold mining in the town and argued that these efforts of FIAN, backed by the German state, could not be explained on environmental grounds.

    "German foundations focus on ethnic, religious and sectarian differences in Turkey and attempt to deepen them in an effort to weaken the nation-state," it claimed and went on that their ultimate aim was the establishment of a federal regime in Turkey in the place of the centralized administration.

    [08] Copies of daily HURRIYET seized by the authorities

    Turkish Daily News (25.10.02) reports that copies of mass-circulation daily HURRIYET were seized yesterday upon the verdict by Ankara State Security Court (SSC) No. 1 on the grounds that the paper included news stories about prosecutor Nuh Mete Yuksel because the same court banned the publications of reports about him.

    SSC Prosecutor's Office filed a complaint to the court about HURRIYET since the latter included news stories about former Ankara SSC chief prosecutor Yuksel, who was sacked from this post earlier this week after exposure to the public of a sex scandal. Upon the application of the prosecutor, SSC Alternate Judge Rustem Ciloglu ordered the Police to seize the copies of daily HURRIYET.

    Due to the sex cassette in question, which showed him together with a woman, Yuksel has been reprimanded by the Supreme Board of Judges and Prosecutors and has been relegated to the position of Ankara's chief prosecutor. Ankara's SSC No. 1 banned publication of reports about Yuksel, stressing that he has been turned into a target for the terrorist organizations


    [B] COMMENTARIES, EDITORIALS AND ANALYSIS

    [09] Columnist in CUMHURIYET says Greece is following a wise policy vis-a-vis Turkey/s EU membership

    Istanbul CUMHURIYET newspaper (22.10.02) publishes the following commentary by Ozgen Acar under the title: "The countdown began for determining Turkey's fate":

    The countdown began for determining Turkey's fate. One does not need to be a soothsayer to understand that Turkey's fate has been written in the spirals of a vicious circle. The coming two weeks will witness important events that will determine Turkey's fate.

    The five-star hotel rooms in Ankara and Istanbul used to be full during times when Turkey was strong, in other words, when the country's economic indicators were in good shape. However, not only the five-star hotel rooms are empty during these days when the country's economic indicators are in bad shape, but the pressure applied by Brussels and Washington on Turkey is also gradually growing.

    None of the countries that have been promised EU membership other than Turkey have signed the Customs Union Agreement with the EU. Yet, the EU has not only failed to accept Turkey's EU membership, but has also failed to recognize our country as an EU candidate. Despite the fact that the Customs Union Agreement failed to serve Turkey's interests, the EU fulfilled none of its financial obligations emanating from the same agreement.

    As a matter of fact, the article published in our newspaper with the headline "the EU is evading us" should have been published with the headline "the EU is deceiving us." The EU's axe is working only in favour Brussels. Ankara, for its part, is waiting for the day when it will be reduced to timber by allowing things to follow their natural course.

    Not deeming all this sufficient, the EU is presently giving priority to Cyprus' EU membership even though it used to lack the courage to even raise Cyprus' EU membership on the agenda during times when Ankara was stronger from the economic perspective. For the EU is very well aware of the existence in Ankara of a government that is encountering difficulties in repaying its increasingly growing debts. Thus, the EU is openly using the Cyprus condition as a tool for applying pressure on Ankara.

    Athens, which will assume the EU rotating presidency on 1 January 2003, is trying to appear sweet to the Turks in order not to cast a shadow on the dialogue that it started with Turkey. Truly, Athens is following the "hit, but do not kill" policy with Brussels with regard to Turkey.

    Athens seems concerned with the fact that the Cyprus problem will be raised on the agenda during the time when it will assume the EU rotating presidency. Greece aims at gaining a series of concessions on issues other than Cyprus from Turkey by having a date set for the start of EU accession talks with Turkey.

    Athens is very well aware of the fact that Brussels has up until now used Greece as a pretext against Turkey's EU membership. For this reason, Athens is following a wise policy of reflecting the image that it is in favour of Turkey's EU membership.

    Meanwhile, the first step of the countdown with regard to Turkey's fate will be taken during the EU leaders' summit in Brussels on 24-25 October. While determining Turkey's fate during this summit, a new element will be added to the spirals of the vicious circle. No one will be surprised if Turkey is told the following during the summit: "No for EU membership for the time being... However, let us offer some alms to Turkey in return for the aids earmarked for Turkey that we suspended in the past."

    The second step with regard to the start of the countdown on determining Turkey's fate was taken in Ankara yesterday. General Tommy Franks, the new "Baghdad governor" of US President George Bush, the global gangster, placed together with NATO Chief Commander Joseph Ralston a map of Iraq on the operations table of the Chief of the General Staff in Ankara. Bush will appoint General Franks as a "governor" of Baghdad as a replacement of Saddam. General Franks will serve as the governor of Baghdad until the time when the United States ousts Saddam, sets up a puppet government in Baghdad, and takes the oil wells under its own control.

    Well, this "governor" or the "president" of the de facto state that will be established in the future was in Ankara yesterday.

    In a strange coincidence, a statement was received from the IMF, the greatest partner of the United States, a couple of days before the "governor's" visit to Ankara: "The release of the $1.6-billion credit portion has been postponed until a number of conditions are met." In a clearer language, this means the following: "I will release the $1.6-billion credit portion when you do as told by Governor Franks."

    The sick man is lying on his bed with a serum attached to his wrist. All of a sudden one of the men of the gangster shows up next to the sick man and says the following while pointing his gun at the sick man: "I will pull down your wall in order to cross into your neighbour's garden and collect fruits from that garden. Otherwise, I will prevent you from receiving this serum."

    Washington fed two spoons of Israeli honey to Ankara before dispatching the Baghdad governor to Turkey. One of these two spoonfuls of honey consists of the inclusion of Turkey as a party in the "Quality Industrial Areas" agreement, known as the "free zone" practice, signed between the United States and Israel in 1985. Turkey was included as a party to this agreement with the help of a new bill. This agreement, which the Turkish businessmen have been waiting for a long time now, recognizes a number of facilities to Turkish industrialists producing goods jointly with Israel and wishing to export their goods to the United States.

    The second spoonful of Israeli honey that the United States fed Turkey consists of the agreement reached for selling water to Israel from the Manavgat river, a process that had earlier turned into an endless story. As indicated by Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit, the Baghdad governor's arrival in Ankara accelerated the process of dragging Ankara toward the Iraqi war.

    There is no doubt that the 3 November elections constitute the most important event that will determine Turkey's fate. Irrespective of whether or not the early elections are timely, these elections show that we are drawing closer to an irreversible vicious circle that would give rise to political changes followed by social changes.

    We are proceeding speedily along an irreversible and dangerous course whose damages cannot be restored.

    /SK


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