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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Press and Other Media, 03-07-31

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.143/03 31.07.03

[A] NEWS ITEMS

  • [01] More statements by the Turkish Cypriot leader on the issue of missing persons.
  • [02] The Turkish Cypriot leader discloses that his vision is to impose Turkish rule in Cyprus. He explains why the pseudostate is not recognized.
  • [03] Erdogan: ^”As Turkey, we have neither rejected the Annan plan so far nor have we favoured the non-solution^‘.
  • [04] Mr Talat says that if his party wins the elections and the Annan plan is accepted the pseudostateīs passports will be valid.
  • [05] The occupation regime has appointed the members of the ^”proprietorship committee^‘.
  • [06] A protocol in sports will be signed between the pseudostate and Kazakhstan in August.
  • [07] Agri Deputy Kaya resigns from Republican People Party.
  • [08] The pseudostate wants the Government of Cyprus to apply to it for the purchase of grain from the occupied areas.
  • [B] COMMENTARIES, EDITORIALS AND ANALYSIS

  • [09] Columnist in AKSAM newspaper analyses Denktasī latest stance on the Cyprus problem.

  • [A] NEWS ITEMS

    [01] More statements by the Turkish Cypriot leader on the issue of missing persons

    Illegal Bayrak television (30.07.03) broadcast that the Turkish Cypriot leader, Mr Rauf Denktas, met today with a delegation commemorating ^”the Alaminos martyrs^‘. Addressing the delegation Mr Denktas said:

    ^”After Vouno, we will raise the issue of Alaminos. We have already set into motion a process by which our lawyers could file compensation suits on the Greek Cypriot side regarding these martyrs. Everyone has to be patient therefore. Why is it that we cannot open the graves or allow the Greek Cypriots to come here and search for graves? This is a point that our people should understand well. This is because there are mass graves in the north that contain the bodies of the Greek Cypriots killed by the Greek Cypriots themselves during the coup, during the five days prior to Turkey's arrival on the island. We know these from the memoirs published by the Greek Cypriots. But we do not know their location. They, however, know the locations. Through the letters we have written to Kyprianou, Clerides and others through the UN we have noted the importance of Greek Cypriots showing the place of these mass graves. Otherwise, every disinterred bone in the north will be recorded as belonging to persons killed by the Turks. We cannot accept this.

    I repeat, as in the south, in the north too there are mass graves of the Greek Cypriots killed by the Greek Cypriots themselves. We have the statements of various people that have appeared in the press, including the memoirs of Mrs Katselides. But, we do not know the locations. The Greek Cypriots know these places. Let them show us these places, so that we could at first return to them the Greek Cypriots killed at the hands of the Greek Cypriots. Only after that the stage could come for mutual grave search and exchange of remains. It is not right for individuals to do this on personal level. There is a missing persons committee established by the UN, in which we too have representatives. We have also documents relating to all the missing persons, showing how and where all that happened. We might publish these one day in the form of a white book. That is when the Greek Cypriots will be embarrassed and ashamed of what they have done. The approach by which the past events are ignored and the offer is made to return the bones as if these Turks were mere victims of accident is a major propaganda initiative. We should not fall into this trap.

    I repeat, if they [the Greek Cypriot leaders] want to tell the truth to the Greek Cypriot families of the missing persons, they should tell us the location of those people whom they killed and buried in mass graves over here within those five days. Let them also give their names if they can, for we know that their names too are included on the list of the missing persons and we are being asked to account for them. That is why we should make these clarifications. I hope that the Greek Cypriot leadership, if it is willing to abandon the propaganda on this issue and genuinely wants to bring relief to the families, would meet our request promptly, thus allowing us to move on to the second phase.^‘

    [02] The Turkish Cypriot leader discloses that his vision is to impose Turkish rule in Cyprus. He explains why the pseudostate is not recognized

    Istanbul AYDINLIK newspaper (27.07.03) publishes an interview with Turkish Cypriot Leader Rauf Denktas in Istanbul by Saim Gozek and Ugur Yildirim under the title: "The United States interferes in the election process":

    The interview is as follows:

    Question: What does the Treaty of Lausanne mean to the Turkish Cypriots?

    Answer: There were some people who believed and expected that the Turkish rule would be restored after 1878. My grandfather was one of them and shared their anguish when the Ottomans left the island and the British flag was hoisted on a mast. He recounted what had happened on that day when I was six years old. He used to say: "They have gone, but will come back in the future." Immediately after the signing of the Treaty of Lausanne, a large number of people, who were convinced that a Christian administration would be established and that the Turks would never return, emigrated to Turkey. The erosion in our population started in that period. I did something in 1960 in memory of my grandfather, who had told me that the Turks would come back and that I would witness their return although he would not live long enough to see it. I visited late Colonel Sunalp on 19 August 1960 when a Turkish regiment arrived in Cyprus as part of Turkey's responsibilities as one of the guarantors and told him the whole story. I found around 10 old people and asked Sunalp to unfold the regiment's standard in their presence and he accepted it.

    If you take a look at the Agreement of 1960, you will see that it paved the way for reestablishment of Turkish Cypriot presence in Cyprus, which had almost ended as a result the Treaty of Lausanne, based on a demographic balance between the Greek Cypriots and the Turkish Cypriots.

    Question: The United States has not officially recognized the Treaty of Lausanne to date and therefore has not signed it. It is now trying to revive UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan's plan. There are ongoing debates centering on the possibility of implementation of a certain version of Annan's plan, which is commonly known as "secret agreement" items and assigning you a role similar to that of Arafat. Could you make a general assessment about those ideas?

    Answer: What is the United States actually doing today? It is putting pressure on us together with the British in favor of the Greek lobby, asserting that they are protecting our rights and that it is the best deal that we could ever be offered. It has also disregarded our arguments about sovereignty and the right to have our own state while supporting the opposition and taking every other action against us. Meanwhile, the EU Parliament has passed a resolution urging Turkey to withdraw its soldiers from Cyprus in addition to a resolution about the Armenian issue.

    In response to those moves, we should follow policies similar to those pursued by Ataturk and former President Ismet Inonu in the past. In other words, we should continue to defend our state.

    Question: Do the United States and the United Kingdom interfere in the election to be held in the ^”TRNC^‘ in December in an effort to ensure implementation of Annan's plan? Have you noticed any sign of those attempts?

    Answer: They have already started to interfere and lend strong support to the opposition. Opposition leaders have admitted by their own statements that they were receiving financial assistance. The ambassadors of those countries attend their rallies and applaud and praise them. The total number of people attending the rallies organized by the silent majority, who say that they want their own state and Turkey's guarantee and that they are opposed to Annan's plan, although they are in favor of a reconciliation, is two or three times higher than those staged by the opposition parties. In spite of this fact, those rallies are not applauded, praised or even reported. They are not highlighted even by the Turkish press and you can neither find any report in international newspapers.

    The United States, which is a powerful country, threatened Bangladesh, which is a poor, but reasonable and friendly country, with cutting off aid if it did not withdraw its decision to recognize us. It also prevented Pakistan from taking a similar step. The Bangladeshi Foreign Minister was forced to resign after coming under fire on the grounds that he was behind the decision to recognize our state.

    Question: Has there been any development regarding recognition of the ^‘TRNC^‘?

    Answer: If we want to gain international recognition, we should tell the countries, which we approach for that purpose, that we would accept to unite with the other side if they recognized us. Otherwise, there would be no unification. I have spent 40 years in conducting fruitless negotiations, because the other side regards itself as the government of the whole Cyprus. Why could not we gain international recognition? The first reason is the resolution, which the Americans and the British pushed through the UN Security Council.

    Secondly, we continued to negotiate in good faith with the Greek Cypriot side, which was regarded by the world as the legitimate Cypriot government conducting negotiations with the Turkish Cypriots, who were described by that legitimate government as a minority. The matter was perceived by the rest of the world from that angle and the Greek Cypriots continued to present it that way. Let me explain Pakistan's case as an example. We founded the Republic in 1983 and the matter was discussed in a session of the UN Security Council and I delivered a speech in that meeting. Pakistan was then a member of the Security Council and its ambassador to the United Nations made a speech, which was much more emotional than mine. We embraced each other in tears when the session ended. We were invited to another Security Council meeting almost 20 days later, because the Turkish Ambassador in Nicosia had presented his letter of credence to me and therefore there was a complaint against Turkey on the grounds that it had appointed an ambassador to a country in spite of the UN resolutions prohibiting it. Before going to New York, Turkish diplomats told me that they were determined to carry the huge burden they had shouldered, but advised me to emphasize in the Security Council meeting that we had left the door open for a federation and that we were ready to establish a new partnership, because, they said, they were in a very difficult situation. I went there and did what I was told to do, because I did not want to put Turkey in a difficult situation. The same Pakistani diplomat told me after the meeting that we should not cause them to come into conflict with the Greek Cypriots and the Greeks if we would eventually establish a new partnership and unite with the Greek Cypriots. These are the reasons which prevented us from gaining international recognition.

    Question: Has there been progress in the efforts related to the package of confidence building measures?

    Answer: We have made that overture because we had confidence in ourselves. Secondly, the Greek Cypriot administration is telling especially young people that the Turkish Cypriots are poverty-stricken barbarians living in slum areas and have destroyed Kyrenia, which was once a beautiful city when the Greek Cypriots were living there.

    Meanwhile, EU Commissioner Gunther Verheugen has recently said: "When I go to Cyprus I see happy and rich people and a prosperous country in the Greek Cypriot side. When I cross to the Turkish Cypriot side, however, I see malnourished and poor people pulling long faces. I wonder what their leaders are doing. Do not they pity their own people?" I read his remarks in a newspaper on the same day he was scheduled to visit me. Of course, we had a big quarrel and I said: "Why have you made those insulting comments about us? You had no right to do that. Where did you see those people pulling long faces? I know that you are behaving that way because you believe in Greek Cypriot propaganda."

    We have made a second overture about Varosha and the airport, but they have turned it down too. I sent a new letter to UN Secretary-General's Office today (24 July) about a mined strip around Nicosia, which frequently puts people's lives at risk. I have proposed to clear landmines on certain zones around Nicosia. It would alleviate tension and we could thus continue to hold talks for taking new steps in the future. We will be waiting for their response. My guess is that they will reject it too.

    Question: How do you feel about the detention of 11 Turkish soldiers by American troops in al-Sulaymaniyah?

    Answer: It was a show of strength. I think that it was an operation carried out in order to disprove the assertion that Turkey should have a voice in Iraq because of the Turcomans or other strategic reasons. It was intended to give the message that Turkey should take into consideration that the United States controls the whole country as a superpower.

    Question: Has it marked the beginning of a new era in Turkish-American relations?

    Answer: The United States should approach Turkey on the basis of equality. Threatening Turkey with cutting off aid if it refuses to accept its demands would not help. I hope that Turkey's relations not only with the United States, but also with its neighbours will improve.

    [03] Erdogan: ^”As Turkey, we have neither rejected the Annan plan so far nor have we favoured the non-solution^‘

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (31.07.03) reports that Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan said yesterday that Turkey has never rejected the plan submitted by the UN Secretary ^÷ General Kofi Annan for reaching a solution in Cyprus and alleged that his country has never supported the non-solution in the island.

    Speaking in the regular general assembly of the Economic Development Foundation (EDF), Mr Erdogan referred to his country^“s relations with the EU, the seventh harmonization package approved yesterday by the Grand National Assembly and the Cyprus problem. The Turkish Prime Minister accused the EU of behaving in an unjust manner to Turkey and alleged:

    ^”I should say that there is an injustice against Turkey. I have to say it. We tell them to express their demands and we shall fulfil them, because I do not see the issue as an issue of harmonization only. They tell us to implement (the reforms). OK, you tell us to implement them, but have the first 15 and other 10 countries completed this harmonization and its implementation? ^ŇWe see that they have not. Most of them have not implemented (the reforms). There is a very simple issue. A country accepted to the EU should not have regional uneasiness within its borders. But, Cyprus is accepted. Has Cyprus overcome problems within the island? The answer is no^‘.

    Mr Erdogan argued that Turkey^“s EU accession would rapidly contribute to finding a solution to the Cyprus problem and added:

    ^”Unfortunately, however, they have not done this. Despite the fact that they have not done this, we as Turkey, have neither rejected the Annan plan so far nor have we favoured the non-solution. As Turkey, we have always favoured a settlement^Ň^‘.

    Mr Erdogan alleged that Turkey and the Turkish Cypriot side have demonstrated a positive approach since 2 April 2003 and accused Greece and the Greek Cypriot side of having a mentality, which ^”does not favour peace^‘. Mr Erdogan claimed:

    ^”However, despite these, the mentality and a person that seizes even a kilo of cheese bought by a Greek Cypriot from ^—TRNC^“ as he crosses to the south of the island is not a mentality or person favouring peace. Similarly, mentality which brings onto the agenda a draft-law requesting imprisonment terms between one and two years for a Greek Cypriot who spends a night in the north of the island can not be in favour of peace. Turkey lifted the visa obligation for Greek Cypriots, but look, Greece has not done the same thing. They don not recognize the same right to ^—TRNC^“. Why are you reluctant? Why are you not feeling at ease? I suggested to Simitis in Belgrade to sit at a table and take up the Annan plan too if necessary, discuss it and solve the issue together. I received the response that he would not sit at a table for a job, which will have no result. But, again we are not hopeless^‘.

    [04] Mr Talat says that if his party wins the elections and the Annan plan is accepted the pseudostateīs passports will be valid

    The main ^”opposition^‘ leader in the occupied area, Mehmet Ali Talat, speaking to the Turkish daily CUMHURIYET (29.07.03) correspondent Resat Akar, has claimed that his party will win the forthcoming so-called ^”elections^‘ in December and then they will sack Denktas from the post of interlocutor. He said that the Turkish Cypriots favour EU membership and want solution.

    When asked whether if they win the ^”elections^‘ and become the ruling power they would call for the resumption of the talks on the basis of the Annan Plan, Talat said: ^”Of course, after consulting with the Turkish government we shall make such a call. In that case the Greek Cypriot leader Papadopoulos^“ job will be difficult. Either he will accept to sit around the negotiation table on the basis of the Annan plan or he will go. This way the world will be able to see the Greek Cypriot intransigence. And if the negotiations do not resume, then the issue of the TRNC^“s recognition would be on the agenda as well^‘.

    When asked whom he would appoint as interlocutor if he sacks Denktas from this post, whose legal knowledge is very deep and who is very familiar with the fine points of the Cyprus problem, Talat said: ^”We cannot go together with Denktas after the elections. For this reason there would be a high level representative. The leader of the greatest party, as the leader of the Turkish Cypriot Community will face Papadopoulos. At that time Papadopoulos would have no need to appoint another interlocutor^‘.

    When asked whether it was true that his party receives financial assistance from the Greek Cypriot side or from foreign establishments and whether he is ready to debate these allegations in public, Talat answered: ^”The allegations are totally unfounded. If they had documents to prove this they would have done it years ago. I am ready to debate this issue anywhere with anybody. We have nothing to fear about^‘.

    Invited to comment on allegations that the Turkish Cypriots are facing difficulties and they were not treated properly while trying to acquire Cyprus passports, identity cards and other official certificates in the hands of the Greek Cypriot leadership, Talat said: ^”We too get such information. Papadopoulos and his supporters continue their tough stance towards the Turkish Cypriots. However, had a solution been reached on the basis of the Annan plan they would not have the chance to do this. I urge our people, not to hurry in getting passports because if we come to power and accept the Annan plan the seal that we will put on the `TRNCī passports and these passports will be valid all over the world^‘

    [05] The occupation regime has appointed the members of the ^”proprietorship committee^‘

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (31.07.03) reports that the so-called council of ministers of the occupation regime appointed yesterday the seven members of the ^”proprietorship committee^‘ to which Greek Cypriots could apply in order to be compensated for their properties illegally occupied by Turkey since the 1974 invasion of Cyprus. According to a ^”law^‘ recently approved by the so-called assembly, the Greek Cypriot who appeals for compensation will renounce his right of getting back and using his property.

    The members of the ^”committee^‘, the chairman of which is the former chairman of the ^”Supreme Court^‘, Salih Dayioglu, are the following: Kutlu Fuat, lawyer who worked for many years in Europe, Yasar Boran, retired ^”deputy attorney general^‘, Guven Silman, retired ^”district attorney^‘, Halil Giray, former director of the ^”Cartography Department^‘, Necat Yazman, former director of the ^”Department of Lands and Surveys^‘ and Tamet Gazioglu, former permanent undersecretary of the ^”Town Planning Department^‘.

    [06] A protocol in sports will be signed between the pseudostate and Kazakhstan in August

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (31.07.03) reports that a Kazak sports Committee, which is visiting the pseudostate after an invitation of the so-called national Olympic Committee, held contacts with sport ^”officials^‘ in occupied Cyprus.

    The Kazak sports Committee, consists, among others, of Mr Serik Adamulu Tukiev, deputy Minister of Sports and Tourism of Kazakhstan, Mr Erden Kazibek, the counselor for Education and Sports of the presidency of Kazakhstan and Mr Erkebulan Jukenulu, chairman of the Kazak Taekwondo Federation.

    As the paper reports, at a meeting that took place yesterday, it was decided that a delegation of the pseudostate will visit Kazakhstan next month to sign a protocol in order for sport contacts between the pseudostate and Kazakhstan to be started.

    Speaking at the meeting, Mr Ahmet Kasif, so-called ^”Minister^‘ of Labour, Social Security, Youth and Sports, stated that there are many possibilities regarding the co-operation between the pseudostate and Kazakhstan and stressed that the pseudostate is open to co-operation with other countries as well. On his part, Mr Tukiev stated that Kazakhstan is ready to have any kind of sport contacts with the pseudostate and to have trainings and matches with the ^”TRNCīs^‘ sport federations.

    [07] Agri Deputy Kaya resigns from Republican People Party

    Turkish Daily News (31.07.03) reports that the number of seats that parties have in the Turkish Parliament has changed twice in the last two days.

    As the paper reports, after Sanliurfa's independent deputy Sabahattin Cevheri joined the ruling Justice and Development Party (JDP) on Tuesday, Agri Deputy of opposition Republican People Party (RPP) Cemal Kaya resigned from his party yesterday.

    With these changes, RPP seats in Parliament decreased to 176, as JDPīs seats increased to 366. Also, True Path Party has three and the Motherland Party has one. There are also four independent deputies in Parliament.

    [08] The pseudostate wants the Government of Cyprus to apply to it for the purchase of grain from the occupied areas

    KIBRIS (31.07.03) reports that the so-called Prime Minister, Mr Dervis Eroglu, and the so-called Minister of Agriculture and Forestry, Mr Irsen Kucuk, in a press conference they held yesterday, said that it is not true that the so-called TRNC authorities prevent the trade with the free areas and alleged that the obstacle in the trade is the Greek Cypriot side.

    Mr Kucuk went on and claimed that there is not a request from the Government of Cyprus for the purchase of grain. ^”In case we have a request the trade can be handled within the framework of rules applied by the states^‘, Mr Kucuk said.

    Mr Kucuk also thanked the ^”Turkish Embassy^‘ in occupied Nicosia, which contributed to the whole issue by buying yesterday 101 thousand tons of produce (barley and wheat) and paid 24 trillion Turkish Lira.


    [B] COMMENTARIES, EDITORIALS AND ANALYSIS

    [09] Columnist in AKSAM newspaper analyses Denktasī latest stance on the Cyprus problem

    Istanbul AKSAM newspaper (28.07.03) publishes the following commentary by Semih Idiz under the title: "The efforts do not lead to results":

    Regardless of what ^”President^‘ Denktas does, the "great openings" that he has recently made do not lead to the solution of the Cyprus problem. A great number of people look to the past and recall that when these measures were laid on the table in the past, he made utmost efforts to obstruct them. In this regard, they do not understand why the same confidence building measures have suddenly became so important for him. As a matter of fact, they do understand, but they do not have a "positive" impression.

    Meanwhile, honourable Denktas continues to declare the "Annan plan," which he hates, dead. This declaration, however, does not go beyond a one-sided "declaration of hope." As a matter of fact, he has not even received Ankara's full support in this regard. The "National Program" that was announced last week noted that "Turkey will continue to extend support to UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan's mission of good offices." Most probably he was mostly distressed by this phrase.

    In addition to all this, currently he has to deal with the "Ilter Turkmen" problem. Turkmen had served as foreign minister in the past. Furthermore, he is very familiar with the United Nations due to the fact that he worked there as a high-level officer for many years. The fact that in his column in HURRIYET Turkmen extended support to the Annan plan, has certainly distressed Denktas. This time Denktas is not dealing with just anyone. This time, he cannot say: "He has not read the plan properly. He does not know what he is talking about. Even if he has read the plan, he has not understood it."

    As Turkmen pointed out in various diplomatic ways, honourable Denktas does not merely ignore the longings and the basic interests of his own people, but he also obstructs Turkey which is trying to make progress en route to the EU. Furthermore, with the stand he adopted prior to the Copenhagen summit, he enabled Cyprus to enter the EU as a Greek Cypriot state, rather than a joint Turkish-Greek Cypriot state. This way, he wasted a historic opportunity that would enable Turkey to neutralize the efforts made by anti-Turkey Greek-Greek Cypriot lobbies in the EU.

    There is no doubt that many people believe that Denktas has an ulterior motive and that his actions are based on a "greater plan." These people claim that Denktas' mission in life is to tear the ties in Cyprus and to ensure that Turkey annexes northern Cyprus. They point out that when doing this, he insists on ignoring the reasons that prevent Turkey from taking such a step.

    Honourable Denktas has not put the political advantage created by the negative stand adopted by Greek Cypriot leader Tassos Papadopoulos, who is not a conciliating person. As a matter of fact, despite the fact that he is viewed as a "spoilsport," Papadopoulos is seen as a conciliating person, a definition that he certainly does not deserve.

    For example, in his meeting with Greek Cypriot Foreign Minister George Iacovou on Saturday, Iranian Foreign Minister Kemal Harrazi extended support to the Annan plan and indirectly supported his Greek Cypriot counterpart's statement to the effect that "Denktas is a spoilsport."

    Honourable Denktas is saying: "We have been holding this fortress for the past 30 years and we cannot give it away now." This "fortress" has been held at the cost of his people's economic and social discontent and of his growing international isolation. Denktas has recently begun to compare himself with Arafat. He claims that "efforts are being made to marginalize him" just like the PLO [Palestinian Liberation Organization] leader. There is a serious problem with this comparison because he lacks that public support that Arafat has succeeded to maintain in spite of everything.

    There is no doubt that we are making these speculations on the basis of the developments. Still, however, we will not have to wait for long in order to see who is right and who is wrong because general elections will be held in the ^”TRNC^‘ the fall or in the winter. From the standpoint of the Turkish Cypriots, there is no doubt that these elections will be of utmost importance.

    The truth is that those in Ankara who want to maintain the status quo in Cyprus are aware of this fact. Having foreseen the developments that might occur, they are forcing Denktas to make certain "openings." This way, they hope to weaken the opposition in the ^”TRNC^‘. As we have already pointed out, however, these openings do not lead to any results. This is because, as their former boss Ilter Turkmen has already noted, the course that should be taken is obvious.

    /SK


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