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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Press and Other Media, 03-04-08

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.65/03 08.04.03

[A] NEWS ITEMS

  • [01] The Spokesman of the Turkish Foreign Ministry assesses the UN Secretary-General's report on Cyprus.
  • [02] Mr Rauf Denktas accuses Mr Alvaro de Soto for the UN report on Cyprus.
  • [03] Denktas said that he could lease some properties in closed Varosha area and threatened the Turkish Cypriots who think of benefiting from the measures to be announced by the Republic of Cyprus.
  • [04] Salih Cosar supports that the Turkish Cypriots should start using the [0E]ro and abandon the Turkish lira. 5. Mr Walter Schwimmer to visit Turkey.
  • [B] COMMENTARIES, EDITORIALS AND ANALYSIS

  • [06] Commentary in RADIKAL supports that Denktas must be removed and Turkey exhibit political will if a solution is to be reached in Cyprus.
  • [07] AFRIKA expresses the opinion that the measures to be announced by the Government of the Republic of Cyprus are not "minority rights".
  • [08] Only Erdogan - Simitis can solve Cyprus, supports Mehmet Ali Birand.
  • [09] Turkish columnist accuses Turkey of having no foreign policy.

  • [A] NEWS ITEMS

    [01] The Spokesman of the Turkish Foreign Ministry assesses the UN Secretary-General's report on Cyprus

    Ankara Anatolia news (07.04.03) reported from Ankara that Foreign Ministry spokesman Huseyin Dirioz briefing journalists at the Turkish Foreign Ministry, said that the Annan report is being studied, adding: "As a first impression, we see that the responsibility for not having achieved a result in the negotiation process is being directed to one side."

    Noting that there are two sides in the Cyprus issue and that the stand adopted by both sides should be examined, Dirioz said that when one has a careful look at the report one sees that in the Hague the Greek Cypriots leader was not ready to sign the Annan plan and to hold a referendum.

    Dirioz said: "Within this context, we would have expected the responsibility not to be shown as falling on one side. Turkey will continue to support the good-offices mission of the UN Secretary-General."

    [02] Mr Rauf Denktas accuses Mr Alvaro de Soto for the UN report on Cyprus

    Illegal Bayrak Television (07.04.03) broadcast that the Turkish Cypriot leader, Mr Rauf Denktas has made an assessment of the report on Cyprus that UN Secretary- General Kofi Annan will submit to the Security Council today. He pointed out that the report, which holds the Turkish side responsible for the failure of the talks on the Annan Plan, has been prepared, not by Kofi Annan, but by his Special Representative Alvaro de Soto in a deliberate manner. He alleged that Alvaro de Soto, who was present during the process of negotiations in Cyprus, did not want to understand what the Cyprus problem was about and acted as though he was not aware of the problem that the Turkish Cypriots were trying to solve. Mr Denktas described the report as something that puts the blame on him.

    In response to a question, Mr Denktas described as "Minority rights" the package of measures reportedly prepared by the Cyprus Government for the Turkish Cypriots. He said: "We support an agreement based on right, justice and equality. It is the duty of us all to keep up our struggle until we achieve this."

    Referring also to the Varosha issue, which is among the proposals the Turkish Cypriot side has submitted to the Greek Cypriot side, Mr Denktas said, without prejudice to the rights of the Greek Cypriots, Varosha will not be left abandoned. "A way should be considered to enable Varosha to get up on its feet," he stressed.

    On his part the so-called Prime Minister Dervis Eroglu responded today to newsmen's questions about the package of measures the Greek Cypriot side has prepared for the Turkish Cypriots, as reported in the press. Noting that he got to know about the measures from press reports, Dr. Eroglu said he had not yet received a full text regarding the measures. He stressed that viewing the package positively was not possible. He pointed out that the Greek Cypriot side considered the Turkish Cypriots as its subjects and was involved in efforts to grant minority rights to them. Describing the move of the Greek Cypriots as an "insult," Dr. Eroglu said accepting such proposals was not possible.

    Responding to a question about the report on Cyprus that Kofi Annan has submitted to the parties, Dr. Eroglu said he did not have the opportunity to analyze the document. He stated, though, that the document has been prepared in a biased and prejudiced way with the idea of blaming one side. Dr. Eroglu said he would make a more detailed statement after studying the report.

    [03] Denktas said that he could lease some properties in closed Varosha area and threatened the Turkish Cypriots who think of benefiting from the measures to be announced by the Republic of Cyprus

    KIBRIS (08.04.03) reports that the Turkish Cypriot leader, Rauf Denktas said yesterday that he could rent some properties in the closed area of Varosha, adding: "As the time passes these buildings suffer badly. I am dreaming of an operation to save Varosha".

    Mr Denktas noted that they could take some measures regarding Varosha and supported that Turkey had a commitment towards the UN Security - Council that "a part of Varosha would be returned to its old owners".

    Referring to the measures reportedly to be announced by the Republic of Cyprus towards the Turkish Cypriots, Mr Denktas described them as "minority measures" and threatened that those Turkish Cypriots who want to benefit from them would be excluded from their community. Commenting on Republican Turkish Party leader, Mehmet Ali Talat's statement on the issue, Mr Denktas expressed his satisfaction about Mr Talat's views and noted: "This is a good development. I hope that they see all the issues more objectively".

    Asked what will their reaction be in case the Government of the Republic of Cyprus announce the measures, Mr Denktas said: "The people, the assembly should take the measures. There are big traps here. They say let us make the Turks MPs. Once in response to the fact that the Turks boycotted the municipal elections, Coronik and three friends of him became members of the municipal council. The Greeks were happy. . Now they are trying to play the same game. I do not know whether or not there will be someone who will be deceived from this game. If there is someone I am sure that he will not be inside our people, he will surely be excluded".

    Meanwhile, commenting on the issue, AFRIKA (08.04.03) writes that Mr Denktas threatens the Turkish Cypriots and that he spoke harshly because he had been encouraged by the fact that the opposition party RTP of Mr Talat had expressed the same view.

    [04] Salih Cosar supports that the Turkish Cypriots should start using the Euro and abandon the Turkish lira

    KIBRIS (08.04.03) reports that Salih Cosar, so-called "minister responsible for the economy" and former leader of the Democratic Party, has expressed the opinion that the Turkish Cypriots should start using the Euro and abandon the Turkish lira in order to ensure price stability in the occupied areas.

    Talking yesterday during a meeting with the depositors of bankrupted PEYAK cooperative bank, Mr Cosar supported that there was absolutely no difficulty in passing to the use of Euro and added that in case this measure is taken price stability would be ensured and that this would bring political stability as well.

    Mr Cosar said: "We and the credit departments take from Motherland Turkey about 200 million Euros annually. I believe that when the depositors' problem is solved less than this money would be enough. I think we are approaching to the end of this problem. In this country we have a deficit of about 150 - 200 million Euros. A great part of this money is being given to us in dollars, that is in foreign exchange. The whole of it will be given to us in foreign exchange. In case this continues to be given in foreign exchange we shall have no objection to choose Euro. If we switch to Euro, considerable price stability will come to the country. The price stability will influence the political stability".

    [05] Mr Walter Schwimmer to visit Turkey

    Turkish Daily News (08.04.03 internet version) reports that the Secretary-General of the Council of Europe Walter Schwimmer will visit Ankara on Friday to discuss Turkey's upcoming EU adaptation laws and the Cyprus issue.

    Schwimmer will be received by President Ahmet Necdet Sezer, Parliament Speaker Bulent Arinc, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul and Justice Minister Cemil Cicek.

    The Turkish government is expected to pass a new package of EU adaptation laws in the next months within the scope of its upcoming National Program in line with the EU Accession Partnership Document, reports TDN.


    [B] COMMENTARIES, EDITORIALS AND ANALYSIS

    [06] Commentary in RADIKAL supports that Denktas must be removed and Turkey exhibit political will if a solution is to be reached in Cyprus

    Istanbul RADIKAL newspaper (06.04.03) publishes the following commentary by Erdal Guven under the title: "Accusing Denktas was natural":

    "The result was evident: UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan pointed to Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktas as the one primarily responsible for the failure to arrive at a solution for Cyprus in the process extending from Helsinki in 1999 to Copenhagen in 2002 and to the Hague in 2003.

    Statements made following the failure of the Hague summit on 10-11 March indicated that such would be the result. As a matter of fact, it was not only Annan who had laid the blame on Denktas at the time. The EU and the United States, too, had made similar statements. Therefore, there is nothing surprising in Annan's report.

    The report will be taken up and approved by the UN Security Council this week. It will form the basis of yet another UN Security Council resolution that will hold the Turkish side responsible for the state of non-solution.

    The point in Annan's report that should be dwelt upon is different. The UN chief has not neglected to leave the door open, stressing that the plan, which is referred to by his name, is still on the table. However, he would make no initiative, personally, regarding it. He implies that he would again get involved, "If political will is shown for a successful outcome." The UN chief makes no secret of where he expects such political will to come from: the Turkish Government. "I hope that the Turkish Government will lend its full support to the search for peace," said Annan. "Without that support it is difficult to achieve a solution."

    This column, too, has stated that the only thing needed for a solution is political will, and that it is primarily Turkey which should demonstrate such will.

    Even today, Ankara skirts the problem, placing its hopes on impossible initiatives for a five-party meeting and on Denktas' proposals, the rejection of which was evident right at the outset.

    The new Turkish Government is still offering an opportunity for a solution, according to Annan. The ruling JDP [Justice and Development Party] may not have displayed the necessary will for a solution in Cyprus, but the following point should not be disregarded: The JDP statements and intentions have been and continue to be supportive of a solution.

    The importance of the JDP is better understood when it is compared with all other "past and present" political parties and even with the present opposition party, which are guided by "state policy" and which are devoid of any convincing move or true intention toward a solution.

    It is worth noting that since 3 November there has not been any talk about a state of no solution, or the status quo as a solution. It is also noteworthy that uniting the `TRNC' with Turkey has stopped being an option, and efforts are being made, despite everything, to keep hope alive for a solution. When all these are added together, the indication is that the JDP has set right the Turkey-Cyprus-EU equation.

    All these assets of the JDP, however, were undermined at the Hague because of the failure to demonstrate political will in support of a solution and to carry this will to the conference table after getting Denktas and his supporters in the military and civilian bureaucracy to accept it. The failure of the JDP is also due to the fact that it succumbed to the will of Denktas and his supporters who are in favour of a no solution. As a result, the Turkish side finds itself in a corner which it is trying to get out of. This is proving not to be possible. It will be impossible if things go on like this.

    Yes, the Turkish side still skirts the problem. It appears that it will continue to do so as long as the initiative is not taken away from Denktas and his supporters.

    At this point, my humble advice to Prime Minister Erdogan is to, once again, think seriously about the person that actually deceived him. Is it Annan, as he suspected, or Denktas and his supporters? He still has time to come up with the right answer.

    There is one more point: Having been proven once again that Denktas is the main obstacle to a solution and EU membership, the elections to be held in North Cyprus in December 2003 have gained more significance. It is known that the `National Assembly' appoints the negotiator in the `TRNC'. An assembly in which the parties supporting a solution and EU membership will be in the majority will remove Denktas' negotiator status and will, thus, end the Turkish Cypriots' bad luck, naturally with the help of Ankara. In short, there is much work to be accomplished in Ankara and in Nicosia to ensure that the EU prospect of North Cyprus and Turkey is not darkened."

    [07] AFRIKA expresses the opinion that the measures to be announced by the Government of the Republic of Cyprus are not "minority rights"

    Noting that for the first time since a long period of time the Turkish Cypriot leader, Rauf Denktas has agreed on an issue with the Republican Turkish Party (RTP), AFRIKA (08.04.03) expresses the opinion that the measures to be announced by the Government of the Republic of Cyprus towards the Turkish Cypriots are not "minority rights". The paper writes, inter alia, the following on the issue:

    "Denktas and the opposition evaluated in the same manner the opening of the Greek Cypriots towards the Turkish Cypriots. Thus, Denktas and the opposition have met on the same line for the first time since a long time. Both Denktas and Mehmet Ali Talat said that these are 'minority rights'.

    The Greeks, as the Republic of Cyprus, have made these proposals towards the Turkish Cypriots without demanding anything in exchange. .The acceptance of these proposals does not ensure the collapse of the status quo in the north. Then what is this anxiety? Is it bad if the south helps our people to breathe? Is it bad if they help these people who are in a deep economic crisis in the north, who are facing difficulties even in taking money from Turkey and who are finding a solution in emigrating?

    We have to ask those who describe those proposals as 'minority rights': If these are minority rights then why don't you demand our partnership rights in the Republic of Cyprus? The Republic of Cyprus is going to sign the accession agreement to the EU on 16 April. This republic is not only .a Greek Cypriot republic. .

    The Greek Cypriot proposals have nothing to do with minorities or majorities. As the Republic of Cyprus is going to accede to the EU in the name of all of us, it has to make some openings towards the Turkish Cypriots, the EU citizens who live in the north. .".

    [08] Only Erdogan - Simitis can solve Cyprus, supports Mehmet Ali Birand

    Under the title "Only Erdogan - Simitis can solve Cyprus", Mehmet Ali Birand writes in Turkish Daily News (08.04.03, internet version), inter alia, the following:

    "On April 16 the Greek Cypriot administration will sign the documents with which it will formally join the European Union. As of that date Cyprus will have a say in EU decisions. Thus it will have attained its goal, having its back covered by Brussels. It will be sitting on the other side of the table during talks concerning Turkey, exercising its veto rights should that be needed. In other words it will be able to obstruct many decisions if it wants to.

    In such a climate it would be out of the question for Turkey to obtain from the EU in 2004 a date for the start of the accession talks -- unless a solution can be found to the Cyprus problem, a solution that would be acceptable to both sides.

    We must fully come to terms with this fact.

    Whether solution of the Cyprus problem is among the Copenhagen criteria or not does not matter anymore. Regardless of whether we like it or not, the Cyprus issue will be the most important obstacle on Turkey's EU path as long as the Cyprus issue remains unsolved.

    The Annan plan does not exist anymore.

    Greek Cypriots will no longer be under any pressure to bring the Cyprus issue to a solution. That leaves only Turkey and Greece.

    Greece is at ease because it has managed to have Cyprus admitted into the EU as a full member. A heavy burden has been taken off its back. Meanwhile, Turkey has clearly shown that it will let certain 'red lines' in Cyprus to be crossed for the sake of the EU.

    So, all the players have shown -- to some extent -- the cards they hold in their hands.

    If Greece and the Greek Cypriots want to block Turkish entry into the EU they can easily do that. They can maintain without any change their current stance regarding a number of issues on which Ankara has been highly sensitised, namely, territory, sovereignty and exchange of property. The problem would be solved.

    If, on the other hand, they want to see Turkey within the EU, that would be a totally different story. Then Turkey can get results.

    The only way out is a repetition of the process initiated by Foreign Ministers Averof-Zorlu in 1960 and brought to a conclusion by two Prime Ministers, namely, Menderes and Karamanlis.

    In this respect, having Simitis and Papandreou in high places in Greece is a stroke of luck. This duo has never gone to the extremes. They have always sought a compromise.

    Seen from this angle it is only a stroke of luck to have the Erdogan-Gul duo in power in Turkey, considering the way these two view Turkey's EU membership goal and the nature of their approach to resolution of the Cyprus problem.

    Will history repeat itself? We will see.".

    [09] Turkish columnist accuses Turkey of having no foreign policy

    Under the title "Turkey has no foreign policy", Cuneyt Ulsever writes in Turkish Daily News (08.04.03, internet version) the following: "It is very clear to me that Turkey is not even following "wrong foreign policies". She does not have any foreign policy!

    Running wrong policies is something not good but it is better than not knowing what is going on at all.

    At the moment, Turkey gives me the impression that we are all on a bus without brakes and the driver is also very drunk. Why do I feel so?

    I feel that not only the government but also the President, the Army, the National Security Council (NSC) and Parliament have not been able to read developments not in the world at large but even in this part of the world.

    The war is new but the indications about its arrival are as old as my uncle. Obviously, Turkey has done nothing to prepare herself for this inevitable war that is aiming to finish the 'unfinished 1991 war'.

    I am afraid that Turkey cannot also read the other possible changes in the area which will follow the war.

    Which premises is my judgement based on?

    1) The license to allow U.S. soldiers be based in Turkey did not pass Parliament only because everybody involved thought that the great majority of people against the war should blame somebody else. The Government wanted to throw the fireball into the hands of the NSC and the NSC threw the same ball into the hands of Parliament that finally refused the bill only because some members of Justice and Development Party (JDP) thought that they could throw the ball by voting 'no' into the hands of those who will say 'yes!' anyway to the bill.

    Their strategy was based on the assumption that the license would be given to the U.S. anyway.

    2) Before the war we thought that the U.S. will back us in Cyprus in order not to throw us into the hands of the EU. After the start of the war, we started thinking that now the EU feels closer to us.

    We could never calculate that the U.S. is our ally but does not back our position in Cyprus at all.

    We also couldn't calculate that the EU (especially Germany and France) may be happy that we did not pass the said license in Parliament but are also equally annoyed if we enter northern Iraq.

    3) The President said in the Iraqi case, 'We will only follow the resolutions of the U.N.,' but we are not ourselves following the resolutions of the U.N. on Cyprus.

    It is also not possible to understand the positive reaction of the President to Colin Powell who basically demanded not the very same but similar concessions from Turkey in his last visit.

    4) Our Foreign Affairs Minister said, 'We are now a partner in the Coalition,' after Powell's visit. How could he say so without the decision of Parliament or even the government?

    5) It is very clear now to the world that the 'strategic partnership with the U.S.' meant for Turkey partnership without action and strategic importance in any case and whatever happens in the world.

    The world cannot change at all without the permission of Turkey!

    Turkey thought that 'the strategic partnership' only meant financial and political 'rights' but no 'obligations'.

    I am afraid that we have to start everything from scratch after the war in order to redefine our foreign policy!"

    /SK


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