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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Press and Other Media, 03-10-06

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.188/03 04-05-06.10.03

[A] NEWS ITEMS

  • [01] EVKAF alleges that it owns the whole of Varosha.
  • [02] Reference to Cyprus by Erodgan, during a press conference after the EU Summit.
  • [03] The Supreme Election Board rejects the appeals for the annulment of the 3rd November elections. Erdogan pleased with the decision.
  • [04] Ministers Abdullatif Sener and Hilmi Guler to visit occupied Cyprus.
  • [05] Turkeyīs Chambers and Stock Exchange Union expresses support for Denktas.
  • [06] The nationalist Grey Wolf organization organized a demonstration against AFRIKA paper.
  • [07] The Turkish Cypriots reacted against the measures decided by the pseudostate and aim to prevent them from buying goods from the free areas of Cyprus.
  • [08] Turkish and Japanese firms established tuna fish farm in the occupied area off the village of Koma tou Yialou.
  • [B] COMMENTARIES, EDITORIALS AND ANALYSIS

  • [09] Columnist in RADIKAL assesses the latest Turkish policy on Cyprus.

  • [A] NEWS ITEMS

    [01] EVKAF alleges that it owns the whole of Varosha

    Illegal Bayrak television (05.10.03) broadcast that Taner Dervis, the director of the EVKAF [religious and charitable trusts] Administration, said that the Administration will take the necessary measures to exercise its property rights in the closed region of Varosha.

    Commenting on press reports and comments on the closed region of Varosha, Taner Dervis repeated that the whole of the closed Varosha belongs to the EVKAF Administration.

    Mr Taner Dervis issued a written reply to various press reports and comments on the closed region of Varosha as well to the President of the House of Representatives Mr Christofias' statement to the effect that under the UN Resolution 550, Varosha should be returned to its legal residents under secure conditions.

    Declaring that the entire Varosha belongs to the EVKAF, Taner Dervis alleged that EVKAF's property rights in the closed region of Varosha are based on documents. The EVKAF's property rights in the closed town of Varosha are derived from the documents of the Abdullah Pasha, Lala Mustafa Pasha, and Bila Agha foundations registered during the Ottoman rule as well from the 3,121 title deeds usurped by the cadastre office of the [British] colonial rule at the turn of the 19th century. Noting that of the 4638-donum [each donum is about 940 square meters] and 300-feet EVKAF property in the closed Varosha at the turn of the 19th century 99.99 percent was illegally usurped, Taner Dervis said that property comprising a one donum land, two houses, and a 452 square feet plot is all that has remained to the EVKAF Administration.

    Taner Dervis alleged that the property in the closed region of Varosha belonging to the EVKAF Administration has been occupied by the Greek Cypriot tourism companies, Greek Cypriot church, Greek Cypriot municipality, Greek Cypriot School Commission, the central government, Greek Cypriot persons, Turkish persons, and the British Defense Ministry. Noting that until 1974 Varosha was the wealthiest region of the island with its 10,000 touristic beds, thousands of workshops, houses, administrative and cultural buildings, Taner Dervis said that the compensation rights accrued to the EVKAF Administration over a century exceed $74 billion in current value.

    Indicating that the EVKAF rules have been in effect throughout the island since 1571 and that they are constitutionally incorporated into the legal system of Cyprus, Taner Dervis emphasized that the content and status of the deeds of trust and vakif property cannot be changed or subjected to time limitation. Taner Dervis pointed out that the EVKAF regulations have also been confirmed by a case concluded at the Larnaca court in 1958. Dervis alleged also that though the UN Security Council resolution 550 recognizes the rights of the 1974 residents of the closed region of Varosha, the supremacy of the law requires, however, that the EVKAF Administration, as the landlord, should have priority over the property.

    Noting that the exclusion of the Varosha region from human settlement has been causing social, economic, and environmental problems, Dervis said that they have prepared a master plan for the Varosha region with social and economic foundations. He added that the master plan aims at building facilities for 20,000 touristic beds and 5,000 workshops that would employ 15,000 people.

    Taner stressed that proceeding from the realities and supremacy of the law, the EVKAF Administration will take the necessary measures to exercise its property rights in the closed region of Varosha. Dervis also noted that the EVKAF Administration sent a letter to the UN Secretary-General on 22 August 2003 explaining in detail the ^”realities^‘ relating to the closed region of Varosha.

    [02] Reference to Cyprus by Erodgan, during a press conference after the EU Summit

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (04.10.03) reported from Rome that Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erodgan on Saturday held a press conference in Rome where he participated in the conference held by the Convention to discuss the Draft Constitutional Treaty.

    In reply to a question whether Mr Simitis and he also discussed the Cyprus problem, Erdogan said: "Cyprus is not included in the Copenhagen political criteria. I cannot understand why reporters focus on it. It is a different issue. We have completed almost all things which should be done concerning the Copenhagen political criteria."

    [03] The Supreme Election Board rejects the appeals for the annulment of the 3rd November elections. Erdogan pleased with the decision

    According to Turkish daily VATAN newspaper (05.10.03) the Supreme Election Board [SEB] has rejected the appeals for the annulment of the 3 November elections. The SEB reached this decision with six votes against one, following a meeting that lasted six and a half hours.

    The SEB is composed of a total of seven members, four from the Supreme Court of Appeals and three from the Council of State. The only person who was opposed to the decision was SEB Deputy Chairman Ahmet Hamdi Unlu.

    Commenting on the SEB decision, Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan said that SEB took a decision which was expected by those that approach the issue with common sense. He said early election was not on their agenda.

    Erdogan, who spoke at a program in a private TV channel, stated that Turkey was a legal state, and that function of all institutions and organizations were obvious in this process. He said, the task of SEB was to act as a referee in an election, stating that SEB evaluated the elections and took its decision according to this.

    Erdogan said the government, which took important steps to install confidence and stability after the November 3 elections, should not be exposed to such a difficulty. He said: " The SEB took this decision within a legal state, and the issue is over now. We continue to progress on our path. The SEB took a decision which is expected by those who approach the issue with common sense."

    [04] Ministers Abdullatif Sener and Hilmi Guler to visit occupied Cyprus

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (06.10.03) reports that Turkey^“s deputy Prime Minister, Abdullatif Sener and Energy Minister Hilmi Guler will illegally visit the occupied area of Cyprus tomorrow in order to attend the opening ceremony of a mobile electricity power station at occupied Gastria village in the Karpass Peninsula of Famagusta.

    The paper notes that the station will have the capacity of 35 megawatt. The private company that built the station will be producing 14.5 million kilowatt monthly for a period of five years, which it will be selling to the ^”Electricity Authority^‘ of the pseudostate (KIB-SEK).

    The opening ceremony will take place tomorrow at 15:00 hours. The two Turkish Ministers who are expected to attend the ceremony will be traveling to occupied Cyprus in the same place with the Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktas who is visiting Turkey, in order to address the opening ceremony of Kutahya University.

    [05] Turkeyīs Chambers and Stock Exchange Union expresses support for

    Denktas Turkish Cypriot daily HALKIN SESI newspaper (06.10.03) reports that Rifat Hisarciklioglu, chairman of Turkey^“s Chambers and Stock Exchange Union (TOBB), has argued that the economic aspect of the Annan Plan had not been studied in the necessary manner and added that the plan would cause a great economic burden to both Turkey and the pseudostate.

    Talking at Saray Hotel in occupied Nicosia, Mr Hisarciklioglu claimed that in order for the possible economic problems to be prevented the occupied areas of Cyprus should join the EU together with Turkey.

    Meanwhile, Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (05.10.03) writes that Mr Hisarciklioglu expressed his full support to the Turkish Cypriot leader, Mr Rauf Denktas whom he described as ^”a national hero^‘ and added that he is not alone.

    According to KIBRIS, Mr Hisarciklioglu visited the occupied areas heading a TOBB^“s delegation on the occasion of the ^”Local Products Fair^‘ organized in occupied Nicosia by the Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Commerce.

    [06] The nationalist grey wolves organized a demonstration against AFRIKA paper

    Under the title ^”This was the last warning^‘, Turkish Cypriot daily AFRIKA newspaper (06.10.03) writes about an action that was taken against the paper on Sunday, 5th of October by the Idealist Hearth organization.

    The paper reports that around 150 persons, mainly of Turkish mainland origin, gathered early in the morning in front of AFRIKA īs offices in occupied Nicosia, headed by Hasan Keskin, National People^“s Movement^“s general coordinator in occupied Famagusta and Tahir Ercelebi, the chairman of Idealist Hearth Organization. The marchers, carrying banners and Turkish flags, chanted slogans and made the sign of the wolf. Two of the marchers placed a black wreath in front of the paper^“s door. The paper points out that despite the fact that the so-called police went to the offices of the paper it was not armed with clubs and shields.

    Speaking in front of AFRIKA īs offices, Tahir Ercelebi addressed a warning against the paper and its journalists: ^”This warning is the last warning for AFRIKA. If the law does not punish them, the nation will. The punishment of the traitors is certain^‘, he said.

    AFRIKA stresses that both in the north and the south, people gathered to support the paper. All the Greek Cypriot television channels covered the event, while the Cyprus Journalists Union, headed by its chairman, Andreas Kannaouros, organized a demonstration at Ledra Palace check-point in which a significant number of Greek Cypriot politicians participated, showing their supports to the paper. According to the paper only ORTAM and CUMHURIYET newspapers covered the event, while the Turkish Cypriot political parties did not make any comments regarding the issue. However the Turkish Cypriot Journalist Trade Union (BASIN-SEN) went to the paper^“s offices and expressed its support. In addition, both the European Journalists Association (IFS) and the Southeast European Media Organization (SEEMO) expressed their support to the paper.

    [07] The Turkish Cypriots reacted against the measures decided by the pseudostate and aim to prevent them from buying goods from the free areas of Cyprus

    Under the title ^”Customs Anger^‘ Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (06.10.03) reports that the Turkish Cypriots reacted against the measures decided by the occupation regime that aim to prevent them from buying goods from the free areas of Cyprus.

    The paper, invoking ^”government sources^‘, wrote last Friday (03.10.03) that the occupation regime decided to impose in the near future 30% customs duties on products bought by Turkish Cypriots from the free areas of Cyprus. The Turkish Cypriots are allowed for the time being to buy goods worth up to 50 Euro.

    The paper, which made a small survey among the Turkish Cypriots asking them about the pseudogovernment īs decision, reports that the Turkish Cypriots reacted strongly against this decision and believe that ^”it was a mistake^‘. They also told the paper that they will show their reaction in the forthcoming December ^”elections^‘ of the pseudostate. ^”Every decision taken is against the people. And the people will give their answer at the ballot-box on the 14th of December^‘, some Turkish Cypriots told KIBRIS. The Turkish Cypriots also accused the occupation regime of putting obstacles to peace and trying to protect the status quo.

    In addition, the persons asked by the paper admitted that they buy various goods from the free areas, but, as they stressed they do so because the prices in occupied Cyprus are very high. ^”Firstly let them drop the prices and we will not do shopping from the Greek Cypriots^‘, they said and gave an example: A detergent sold at 18 million Turkish lira in the free areas, it is sold at 28 million liras in occupied Cyprus.

    [08] Turkish and Japanese firms established tuna fish farm in the occupied area off the village of Koma tou Yialou

    According to local daily BIRLIK newspaper (06.10.03), Turkish Dardanel Group and the Japanese Thoto Suisa firm have established a fish farm for setting tuna fish to fatten under the name of ^”Dardanel Cyprus^‘ in the occupied area, off the coast of the occupied village of Koma Tou Yialou. The inauguration ceremony took place the other day in the occupied village of Koma Tou Yialou.

    The company plans to start production this year with a capacity of one thousand tons of tuna fish monthly. As the chairman of the Executive Committee of the Dardanel Group, Mr Niyazi Onen said, because of some problems production this year will be 200 tons. He said that the cost of the project was 4.5 million USD. Mr Onen said that they will try to increase the capacity of the fish farm to three thousand tons, thus realizing an export capacity of 100 million USD.

    The Japanese company was represented by Mr Musashi Seto. Speaking at the inauguration ceremony Mr Seto said that in Japan there is the view that there is economic and political instability in the ^”TRNC^‘ and for this reason nobody wants to invest here. However, he added that with this project they brought technology and investment money in the ^”TRNC^‘ and they hope that with the help of the occupation regime they would be successful.


    [B] COMMENTARIES, EDITORIALS AND ANALYSIS

    [09] Columnist in RADIKAL assesses Turkish policy on Cyprus

    Istanbul RADIKAL newspaper (05.10.03) publishes the following commentary by Murat Yetkin under the title: "Cyprus alarm bells in foreign policy":

    ^”The statement by `TRNC Presidentī Rauf Denktas the day before yesterday that "If the opposition should win, I will use my right of veto" was but the latest shadow to fall over the 14 December elections, over which no shadows were supposed to fall. Even so, it appears that this will not even be the last one. If we look back a bit, we can see the statement by Eric Edelman, the United States' Ambassador in Ankara, in a speech he made in Istanbul, that "Denktas must not block a solution." Edelman, however, in a later conversation with me, said that the text of that speech had been prepared far in advance, and consequently could not have been intended to influence the meeting later on that same day between Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul and Guenther Verheugen, the European Union's Official Responsible for Expansion. The US Ambassador said that "We are working not to hinder Turkey's EU membership, but rather to support it."

    In fact, even this statement indicates that the US Ambassador's action [i.e., his earlier statement] was no coincidence. Edelman's words were consistent with the statement by the United States' Special Cyprus Representative Thomas Weston that the solution might become easier with a victory by the opposition in the 14 December elections. Similar statements by Verheugen are known as well.

    Although Denktas does not consider the plan of United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan to be a basis for negotiations, both Weston and Verheugen are united on the position that there is no other alternative in view.

    It is clear that both the EU and the United States have stuck their hands into the elections to be held on 14 December in the `TRNCī. It is unclear just how much pressure is going to contribute to a solution, even if the election should be won by Mehmet Ali Talat's Republican Turkish Party [RTP], which gives the impression that it would win if the elections were held today. For the most recent words of Denktas indicate that even if Talat becomes the `Prime Ministerī, Denktas, with his powers as `Presidentī, would work to thwart him. Talat would probably seek to remove Denktas from negotiating in the name of the `TRNCī. But it is clear that it would be very difficult [for Talat] to take any steps in the face of a campaign of "They are selling out our country to the Greek Cypriots", which Denktas, the day before yesterday, implied that he would go into the opposition to lead.

    Given this state of affairs, eyes are being turned toward Ankara.

    But Ankara, as Denktas found out months ago, is far from being monolithic.

    Prime Minister [Recep] Tayyip Erdogan and Foreign Minister Gul openly favor solution. But in order not to draw over reaction from the Cyprus lobby, which is perhaps the strongest lobby in Ankara, and perhaps also thinking that, in the present circumstances, it would be difficult to reach a solution by excluding Denktas, they are saying that they stand behind Denktas.

    President Ahmet Necdet Sezer, in the opening of the National Assembly on 1 October, did not depart from the familiar clichťs on the Cyprus issue.

    As for the military, they stand for the most part with Denktas. At the 1 October reception at the National Assembly, Ground Forces Commander [General] Aytac Yalman, asked by journalists if they could put questions to him, said jokingly in response that "You can ask two questions. One can be on Iraq, the other on Cyprus." So the importance ascribed to the issue is evident.

    Following the 14 December `electionsī, coalition negotiations, which will likely be difficult, will be held in Northern Cyprus, which with its population of 150 thousand is smaller than the Ankara neighborhood of Kucukesat. With the New Year and Sacrifice Holidays, December will run into January. There are three full months lying between January and May. And in May of 2004 the Cypriot Greek Republic will officially become an EU member representing all of Cyprus.

    In this situation, in addition to the difficulty created by the Greek Cypriots, before the Cyprus issue is resolved, getting membership in the EU, where they will have a veto right, the 30 thousand Turkish troops on the island will, as Verheugen has said, become foreign occupational forces on EU soil. And thus whatever may still remain of the basis of legitimacy of 1974 will be totally lost.

    Whoever you ask on Cyprus hides behind the excuse of "Let us first see what happens in the 14 December elections."

    What the UN is going to do, with support from the EU and the United States, on 14 December is evident: They are going to put the Annan plan, either in the very same form or else with some very minor modifications, in front of the Turkish side. Nicosia, whether it wants to or not, will then look to Ankara. But, at least at the moment, Ankara has no Plan B.

    All the various areas of foreign policy, extending from Iraq as far as the EU and the United States, have become hostage to the Cyprus issue. But Ankara, like a heedless truck-driver heading at full speed toward a wall, is saying "Let us first make it to the wall, and then we'll think about the brakes."

    Turkish foreign policy is sounding a serious alarm over Cyprus, but to some ears it seems to be a siren song.^‘

    /SK


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