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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Press and Other Media, 04-04-22

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.74/04 22.04.04

[A] NEWS ITEMS

  • [01] Turkish-Greek ties to remain intact whatever the outcome of the referenda.
  • [02] Talat sees the "yes" vote as investment for the future of the Turkish Cypriots.
  • [03] Serdar Denktas: "I do not believe that the plan will function under these conditions".
  • [04] Serdar Denktas to be referred to Democratic Party's "High Disciplinary Committee".
  • [05] Gul stated that Greece will back Turkey´s EU membership regardless of the 24 April referenda results.
  • [06] The Republican People´s Party and the Turkish Foreign Ministry on the passage of Turkish ships through the territorial waters of Cyprus.
  • [07] Ankara Court upholds punishment passed against Leyla Zana and three other Kurdish-origin deputies of the Democracy Party.
  • [08] Bahceli visits the pseudostate in order to boost the "no" campaign.
  • [09] European Court finds Turkey guilty.
  • [10] Turk killed in Chechen fighting.

  • [A] NEWS ITEMS

    [01] Turkish-Greek ties to remain intact whatever the outcome of the referenda

    Turkish Daily News newspaper (22.04.04, internet version) reports that the referenda in Cyprus are not expected to weaken Turkish-Greek ties. The paper notes that Greek and Turkish leaders signaled on Wednesday that the ties between their two countries will not be damaged by the outcome of the upcoming referenda on Cyprus.

    Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul, Greek Premier Costas Karamanlis and Greek Foreign Minister Petros Moliviatis met yesterday in Sarajevo on the sidelines of a gathering of Southeast European countries.

    In statements after his meeting with Mr Karamanlis, Mr Erdogan said they discussed the issue of further improving the ties between the two countries and noted, upon a question from the press, that he would pay an official visit to Athens whatever the outcome of this Saturday's referenda on the island.

    Mr Erdogan also said that both countries will always keep their good will for each other.

    Meanwhile, the Greek Prime Minister, Mr Karamanlis noted, while briefing the press, that the will existed in both Turkey and Greece to boost bilateral ties. Karamanlis said Turkey's EU membership was also taken up during the meeting, adding that he had reiterated Greek support for Turkey's EU membership process to Erdogan.

    [02] Talat sees the "yes" vote as investment for the future of the Turkish Cypriots

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (22.04.04) reports that Mehmet Ali Talat, the leader of the Republican Turkish Party has said that they had an opportunity with the referendum to save both themselves and Turkey.

    In statements during his visit yesterday to occupied Rizokarpasso village, Mr Talat supported that the "yes" votes at the referendum in the Turkish Cypriot community would be an investment for the future. In case the percentage of the "yes" votes is high in the Turkish side and the "no" votes prevail at the referendum in the Greek Cypriot community, he added, the referendum will be repeated in the future and this will prevent any changes in favour of the Greek Cypriot side.

    Mr Talat argued that Turkey asked the Turkish Cypriots to vote for "yes" at the referendum.

    [03] Serdar Denktas: "I do not believe that the plan will function under these conditions

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (22.04.04) reports that Mr Serdar Denktas, leader of the Democratic Party has supported that the Annan Plan would not function under the existing conditions.

    In statements yesterday after a meeting with the Italian ambassador to Nicosia, Mr Gherardo La Francesca, Mr Denktas argued that at this stage people could not express their personal views, because their views are formed as a result of great pressure exerted from outside.

    "We are under the pressure of Turkey, while southern Cyprus is under the pressure of the United Nations and probably Greece. I do not believe that this plan could function under these conditions", he supported adding that even if 50% of both communities vote for "yes", "this could not be considered as a full yes".

    [04] Serdar Denktas to be referred to Democratic Party's High Disciplinary Committee

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (22.04.04) reports that Mr Serdar Denktas, the leader of the Democratic Party (DP), will be sent to the Party's "High Disciplinary Committee", because some decisions he took were against the party's regulations. This development came after ten prominent members of the party were temporarily expelled from DP yesterday and will be sent to the Party's "High Disciplinary Committee". The paper stresses that DP is like a boiling pot.

    [05] Gul stated that Greece will back Turkey´s EU membership regardless of the 24 April referenda results

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (21.04.04) reports that the Turkish Foreign Minister and Deputy Prime Minister, Abdullah Gul has said, ''Greece has clearly extended its support to Turkey's European Union (EU) process whatever the results of referenda in Cyprus will be.''

    Replying to questions of journalists, Gul, who is currently in Sarajevo to attend the Seventh Summit of Heads of State and Government of Southeast European Countries Cooperation Process, said on Wednesday: ''Now, the Turkish Cypriots and the Greek Cypriots will make a decision about their own future in the referenda to be held on April 24.''

    Upon a question about views of Greek Prime Minister Costas Karamanlis regarding the possible results of the referenda, Gul said: ''Karamanlis told us that anything could happen. And we told the Greek side that we hope the Cyprus issue will be solved. Greece has clearly extended its support to Turkey's EU process whatever the results of referenda in Cyprus are. Turkey's membership to the EU will also be beneficial to Greece,'' he said.

    [06] The Republican People´s Party and the Turkish Foreign Ministry on the passage of Turkish ships through the territorial waters of Cyprus

    Turkish Daily News (22.04.04) reports that Republican People´s Party (RPP) of Turkey stated that Turkey´s access to open seas would be reduced by the Annan Plan and stated that the Party can take the ruling Justice and Development Party (JDP) to the Turkish Supreme Court because of this issue.

    At a press meeting in the Parliament, RPP deputy leader Oymen said that the necessity of getting an approval from the central government of Cyprus for the passage of war ships through the territorial sea of Cyprus has been affirmed in the fourth article of the "Foundation Agreement-Annex III, Attachment 11, Law 47 -- Federal Law on the Maritime Areas of Cyprus."

    Oymen said "passage through the territorial sea of warship or nuclear-powered ships or ships carrying nuclear or other inherently dangerous or noxious substances shall be subject to the prior notification to the competent authority and consent by such authority" with the existence of the fourth article titled: "Passage of ships carrying dangerous substances."

    Stating that this is against international law, Oymen said that there is a right of "innocent passage" for the warships according to international law since 1949. Oymen went onto say that "we happened to give up our right to innocent passage which we already have according to international law. Does the government know what it loses with regard to the continental shelf?"

    Oymen expressed that he cannot think of one official from the Foreign Ministry who will allow such a situation. Oymen also claimed that Chief of General Staff Gen. Hilmi Ozkok did not mention the "continental shelf" in his speeches during last week's press briefing on Cyprus. Expressing his skepticism about this agreement related to continental shelf being hidden from the Office of General Staff, Oymen said "If the chief of staff had been aware of this agreement, he would have made this public. I believe this. It would have been surprising for me if he had known."

    Following this development, the Turkish Foreign Ministry issued a detailed statement as regard the issue.

    As Ankara Anatolia news agency (21.04.04) reports a statement of the Turkish Foreign Ministry said that "the Ministry and concerned institutions closely monitored issues mentioned in the annex of the Annan plan, especially the federal laws of the United Cyprus Republic "on the maritime and shipping" since the preparation phase of the plan."

    The statement noted that the Ministry exerted efforts to reach a conclusion on those federal laws in line with its views. Those laws authorized the Parliament of the United Cyprus Republic to decide on establishment of economic zones, the statement said.

    The statement pointed out that "economic zones could be established after the United Cyprus Republic signed some restrictive agreements with its neighbor countries in line with international law."

    Touching on the issue of continental shelf, Turkish Foreign Ministry said, "The federal law regarding the continental shelf of Cyprus says that the provisions of this law are applicable only on submarine areas where the continental shelf of Cyprus is delimited by agreement or those uncontested areas adjacent to the coast of Cyprus beyond the territorial waters on the basis of depth of exploitability. All these changes are changes which regard rights and interests of Turkey and Turkish Cypriot side in the Mediterranean."

    The U.N. resolution no 47 authorized the concerned ministry of the federal government to allow the transition of war ships through territorial waters of Cyprus, the statement noted.

    The statement said that "Turkey had objected to that permit which was against international law from the outset." Turkey had drawn the attention of the U.N. to that issue in writing, the statement pointed out. The statement said that it was stated that not only Turkey but any other country would not be subject to that permit.

    In its statement, the Ministry recalled that "undangerous transition from territorial waters was a right used by all countries without any need for a special permit under international law."

    The second article of the mentioned law made "the permit of the minister" invalid, the statement emphasized.

    The statement recalled that the second article said that "if the provisions of the mentioned law contradicted U.N. Convention on the Law of the Sea, the provisions of the mentioned convention would be valid." The United Cyprus Republic would be a side to that convention, the statement noted.

    The statement added that therefore, not only war ships but also merchant ships would continue to use their rights to undangerous transit through territorial waters of Cyprus without any need for permit.

    [07] Ankara Court upholds punishment passed against Leyla Zana and three other Kurdish-origin deputies of the Democracy Party

    Turkish Daily News (22.04.04) reports that concluding a lengthy retrial process closely watched by the European Union, an Ankara court ruled on Wednesday that four former deputies of the banned Democracy Party (DEP), convicted for ties to outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK), must remain in prison, a move which sparked immediate criticism and warnings on Turkey's membership prospects from Brussels.

    The ruling by the Ankara State Security Court No. 1 ordered former deputy Leyla Zana, who won the Union's prestigious Sakharov human rights prize, and three other ex-legislators to serve the remainder of their 15-year prison sentences.

    The four former deputies were having a retrial, ordered in 2001 by the European Court of Human Rights, due to irregularities in the original trial. Having already served 10 years in prison, the four would be eligible for release as early as next year.

    "The Commission strongly deplores today's verdict by the Ankara State Security Court confirming the condemnation of Leyla Zana to serve her full prison term," EU Commission spokesman Jean-Christophe Filori told a news conference in Brussels.

    Asked what impact it would have on Turkey's bid for EU entry, he said: "This is certainly an element that we would have to take into account."

    Brussels has long urged EU candidate Turkey to free the four, saying their case reflected poorly on Ankara's efforts to improve its patchy rights record, a requirement for achieving its aspirations to join the EU. Members of the European Parliament attending Wednesday's court hearing also criticized the verdict.

    In addition Yusuf Alatas, the lawyer for four former deputies, immediately applied for an appeal in a higher Turkish court and said he would also file another appeal in the European court.

    None of the defendants was present at the hearing. The four decided last month to shun the retrial, claiming they were not allowed a fair hearing.

    "We have tried for 13 months (to win their release), even though we knew our efforts would prove futile," Alatas told reporters outside the courthouse in Ankara.

    The ex-lawmakers were stripped of their parliamentary seats and jailed for 15 years in 1994 for ties with the PKK.

    [08] Bahceli visits the pseudostate in order to boost the "no" campaign

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (21.04.04) reports that Mr Devlet Bahceli the chairman of the Nationalist Action Party (NAP) arrived in occupied Cyprus on a three-day visit.

    Bahceli was received at Lefkoniko Airport by a large group of persons. In a short statement there, Bahceli said that the "`TRNC´ is not a hump on Turkey's back but a piece of the motherland."

    [09] European Court finds Turkey guilty

    Under the above title Turkish Daily News (22.04.04) reports that the European Court of Human Rights has ordered Turkey to pay 2,600 euros in compensation due to lack of extensive investigation.

    Necdet Buldan filed a complaint at the court in 1995, claiming that his brother Savas Buldan was tortured and suffered ill-treatment and was the victim of an extra-judicial killing and also that the Turkish judiciary did not carry out a proper investigation. The European Court decided that Turkey was guilty for not performing an extensive investigation, while rejecting claims of an extra-judicial killing and torture.

    [10] Turk killed in Chechen fighting

    Under the above title Turkish Daily News (22.04.04) reports the following:

    "Twelve militants including a Turk were killed in operations carried out by Russia in Chechnya. According to a statement from Russian military official Ilya Shabalkin to the Itar-Tass News Agency, a Turk named Yusuf Semek was killed along with other 11 militants during fighting between the Chechnyan militia and Russian military forces in southern Chechnya. "A Turkish passport with a visa issued by Georgia on July 7, 2002 was found on the body of this person [Semek]," said Shabalkin. In the latest operation, 17 camps and 18 watch-towers along with eight warehouses containing rifles and medicine were destroyed."

    /SK


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