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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Press and Other Media, 04-06-01
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From: The Republic of Cyprus Press and Information Office Server at <http://www.pio.gov.cy/>TURKISH PRESS AND OTHER MEDIA No.101/04 29-31/05-01.06.04
[A] NEWS ITEMS
[B] COMMENTARIES, EDITORIALS AND ANALYSIS
[A] NEWS ITEMS
 The general secretary of ICO illegally visits the occupied areas of CyprusTurkish Cypriot illegal "Bayrak" television (28.05.04) broadcast that the general secretary of the Islamic Conference Organization (ICO), Abdulvahit Belkeziz illegally visited on Friday the occupied areas of Cyprus and met with the Turkish Cypriot leader, Rauf Denktas and the so-called Prime Minister, Mehmet Ali Talat.
In his statements, Mr Belkeziz thanked Denktas and Talat for giving him the chance to see the situation on the island and alleged that the results of the referenda showed that the Turkish Cypriots respected the international law and cooperated with the international community. Mr Belkeziz said that the positive answer of the Turkish Cypriots to the Annan Plan is taken into consideration in the draft resolution of the meeting of the Ministers of Foreign Affairs, which will be taking place in Istanbul.
"We accept that after the referendum there is a new situation. We shall evaluate this new situation with new ideas, new proposals", he added noting that he would do everything he could for the occupation regime to participate in the ICO meetings as "a basic member" under the name the "Turkish State of Cyprus".
Meanwhile, in his statements Mr Denktas alleged that during his stay in occupied Cyprus Mr Belkeziz would see that there was a "state with all its institutions" in the occupied areas. Mr Denktas claimed that the solution of the Cyprus problem depended on the "equal behaviour" towards the two sides in Cyprus by the world. Mr Denktas supported that the 24 April referenda proved the existence of two "peoples" in Cyprus.
Furthermore, Mr Talat said that the Turkish Cypriots wished to be "better represented" in the ICO meetings and added that their final aim is to become a full member of the organization. "With the reunification of Cyprus, that is with the solution of the Cyprus problem, our final aim is for Cyprus to become a member of the Islamic Conference. Thus we shall achieve the objective of an EU member state being a member of the ICO at the same time", Talat said.
 Turkey signs a protocol on the environment with the regime in the territories of Cyprus under Turkish military occupationTurkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (30.05.04) reports that on Saturday Turkey's Minister of Environment and Forests, Osman Pepe signed a protocol with Ayse Donmezer, so-called Minister of Economy and Tourism, aiming at "protecting the environment for the health and the prosperity of the young generations and for realizing a continuous development".
The provisions of the protocol, under the name "Agreement for Cooperation in the field of the Environment", covers the next five years.
In his statements, Mr Pepe said that "with this agreement for bilateral cooperation it is now inevitable for the two states, which are heading towards the EU, to make steps for the environment and regarding the environment". Mr Pepe noted that after the ending of the "isolation" of the Turkish Cypriots, it is obvious that there will be a great increase in the building sector and in the development. "Protecting the environment in this procedure is a condition", he added and concluded: "As a Minister I declare before the public opinion that as the government of the Republic of Turkey we shall honour this signature".
 Turkey is touring the muslim countries asking for support in its efforts to give a separate status to the territories of the Republic of Cyprus under its military occupationTurkish Daily News (01.06.04) publishes the following report on the efforts of Turkey, the new Islamic government of which claims to be full of good will for a solution to the problems it has created in Cyprus with its unprovoked Turkish invasion of 1974, to partition Cyprus by legalizing its universally condemned crimes against Greek and Turkish Cypriots:
"Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul held talks with Saudi Arabia's leaders on Monday and is planning to visit Egypt and other regional countries in the coming days as part of Turkey's appeal to Muslim countries for support to efforts to end international isolation of Turkish Cypriots after their vote in support of a U.N. plan for reunification of the island.
As he was in Jeddah, State Minister Mehmet Aydin was on a tour to six Gulf countries and plans were being drafted for State Minister Abdullatif Sener to visit a number of African countries. Turkish Cypriot Foreign Minister Serdar Denktas also met Pakistani and Bangladeshi leaders in these countries over the weekend and listened to words of support for their endeavour to lift `sanctions´ on the `TRNC´.
"Saudi Arabia supports very sincerely and strongly the Cyprus policy of Turkey," Gul told reporters after meeting his counterpart Prince Saud Al-Faisal. He said the Cyprus issue had been discussed in detail at the meeting with al-Faisal and added that he had received support for Turkey's position.
In synchronized action with the `TRNC´ leadership, Ankara is working to get economic sanctions that have crippled the Turkish Cypriot economy for decades, lifted. Despite their vote in an April referendum in support of the U.N. plan, which had foreseen entry into the EU of a united Cyprus, Turkish Cypriots remained outside the European Union because the plan was rejected by 75 percent of the Greek Cypriots.
Since then, Turkish and Turkish Cypriot leaders have lobbied the United States and EU countries to end the international isolation of the Turkish Cypriots.
Officials are also in touch with Muslim countries. Secretary-General of the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC) Abdelvahid Belkeziz met Gul last week in Ankara and later took a direct flight to the `TRNC´, instead of the customary practice of going through the internationally-recognized Greek Cyprus, to meet Turkish Cypriot leaders.
The `TRNC´, which lacks international recognition, wants its current observer status membership status in the OIC to be upgraded to full membership. In a sign of the warm attitude of the OIC, Belkeziz said the organization was ready to do its best once the `TRNC´ authorities made their official request for upgraded status.
The diplomatic tour to Muslim countries comes ahead of a critical meeting of foreign ministers of the OIC in Istanbul in mid-June. The ministers are expected to announce steps to end isolation of the `TRNC¨ and upgrade its level of representation."
 The Turkish Press continues the swearing campaign against the President of the Cyprus Republic which is an EU member stateTurkish mainland HURRIYET newspaper (31.05.04) alleges that the USA Government characterizes a "liar" Mr Tassos Papadopoulos, the President of the Republic of Cyprus and does not want him even to visit Washington.
The paper, which invokes information by high level USA officials, writes that the USA Government is informed about Mr Papadopoulos´ visit to Washington next week but he will not find any officials to hold contacts. "We do not want to meet with him", they told HURRIYET adding that "nobody want to see Papadopoulos, the lawyer of Slobotan Milosevic".
Turkish Cypriot daily ORTAM newspaper (01.06.04) re-publishes the report by HURRIYET, under the title "Ban on Papadopoulos' by the USA".
 The United Cyprus Party sent a letter to the UN Secretary-GeneralTurkish Cypriot weekly BIRLESIK KIBRIS newspaper (29.05.04) reports that the United Cyprus Party (UCP) has sent a letter to the UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan. In the letter the UCP expressed the wish and the desire that the report that Mr Annan will submit to the UN Security Council as regards the developments of the Cyprus problem, will leave open the door of the dialogue, under the supervision of the UN, for the two communities of the island. The UCP also stressed in the letter that the island must not continue to be divided because the majority of the Greek Cypriots said "no" in the 24 April referendum and stated that the worries of the Greek Cypriots as regards the issues of the security and the implementation of the plan must be taken into consideration in order for the referendum to be repeated.
 Turkish General: No concessions in the AegeanNTV television (28.05.04) broadcast that the Deputy Chief of the Turkish General Staff said on Thursday that Turkey will not make any concessions over its legitimate and vital interests in the Aegean region.
These interests, including rights over international waters and air space, security requirements, transportation and natural assets, were non-negotiable, General Ilker Basbug told a seminar staged by the General Staff Department of Military History and Strategic Studies in Istanbul entitled "Regions of Crisis from the Perspective of Turkey, NATO and European Union (EU) and Their Impacts on Turkey's Security".
"A lasting peace and stability can only be provided after finding fair and acceptable solutions to all problems," the General said. "Like all other candidate countries, Turkey has to accept to resolve the Aegean dispute with Greece or submit it to the International Court of Justice.
"According to AGENDA 2000 and Helsinki decisions, the solution to these problems are not pre-conditions for opening accession talks with the European Union. The same documents say that such problems should be resolved before conclusion of full membership negotiations," the Turkish general said.
 Erdogan plans to visit Iran, Cyprus too on his agendaTurkish Daily News (01.06.04) reports that the Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan is planning to visit neighboring Iran in late June, Turkish news reports said on Monday. Turkey has officially requested such a visit from Iranian authorities, according to NTV television.
Turkish Foreign Minister, Abdullah Gul, and State Minister for Foreign Trade, Kursad Tuzmen, have previously visited Iran but despite June's heavy diplomatic schedule, Erdogan is to visit Iran, probably on June 21-22.
The visit is expected to tackle the issue of Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK), which also goes by the name of KADEK and Kongra-Gel. Turkey wants Iran to label the PKK, regardless of name, as a terrorist organization. Turkey's efforts to end international isolation of Turkish Cypriots are also expected to figure in Erdogan's talks, NTV said.
 Turkey sees 'contributor' role in the Greater Middle East InitiativeUnder the above title and subtitle: "Turkey does not want to be seen as a 'model' country in the project and that Turkey would really become a good contributor in materializing the project as it knows the region quite well, Turkish sources say," Turkish Daily News (01.06.04) publishes the following report:
"Turkey has told the United States that it wants to be a "contributor" in Washington's Greater Middle East Initiative, rather than a "model," Turkish sources said Monday.
Government has presented its views and potential contributions to Washington on the initiative, proposed by the United States to bring peace and democracy to the Middle East region, through various talks, according to sources.
The U.S.-floated initiative is expected to take a more concrete shape at a meeting of G-8 countries in early June. Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan is also invited to the summit as a "democratic partner."
Turkish leaders have said several times that Turkey did not want to be a "moderate Islamic" model to the initiative's target countries because it was a secular, not a moderate Islamic country.
Turkey does not want to be seen as a "model" country as part of the project and that Turkey would really become a good contributor in materializing the project as it knew the region quite well, the same sources said on Monday.
The sources said that there had been various exchanges of view between Turkey and the United States with regard to the Greater Middle East Initiative up to the date.
The same sources said that Turkey had previously been considered by the United States in the same category as the "target" countries; but after the bilateral contacts between Turkey and the United States, Turkey started to be called one of the "contributor" countries.
Turkey thinks it is important that the project be adopted by the hosting countries and that each country in the region contribute to the project as much as possible.
Stressing that there is no religious element within the Greater Middle East Initiative, diplomatic sources indicated that Greater Middle East Initiative was not yet a mature project.
The sources also noted that the project should be handled in multilateral and multi-dimensional ways and economic aid from western countries constituted great importance for the success of the project."
 Turkish leaders complain that the US failed to act against PKK despite past promisesUnder the title: "PKK to end ceasefire", and subtitle: "The outlawed PKK announces it will end the five-year ceasefire on June 1, threatening to hit back at Turkish troops and warning foreigners against traveling to Turkey or investing here", Turkish Daily News (31.05.04) publishes the following report:
"Separatist Kurdish militants declared an end to their five-year ceasefire with Turkey after a spate of recent violence, a news agency close to the outlawed group said.
The terrorist Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) , which also goes by the name KADEK and Kongra-Gel, took up arms against Turkey in 1984 in a bloody campaign to carve out an ethnic homeland in the country's mainly Kurdish southeast.
More than 30,000 people died in the conflict, but the violence fell off sharply with the 1999 capture and imprisonment of PKK chieftain Abdullah Ocalan.
"The ceasefire will end on June 1," said a statement from the PKK leadership on Saturday, based in northern Iraq.
"The ceasefire's political and military meaning has been lost with the Turkish state's destructive operations over the last three months," said the statement, carried by the Europe-based Mezopotamya agency, a mouthpiece for the terrorists.
The militants also threatened to hit back at Turkish troops and warned foreigners against traveling to Turkey or investing here.
The announcement of the ceasefire follows Turkish leaders' complaints that the United States failed to act against the group despite past promises. Washington and the European Union consider the PKK, a terrorist group.
Turkish intelligence sources estimate some 4,500 Kurdish militants are holed up in northern Iraq, while a few hundred reportedly operate in southeastern Turkey.
The outlawed PKK added that it would not begin fighting, however, if the government responded to calls for a cease-fire, according to the Germany-based Mesopotamian News Agency.
This month has been the southeast's bloodiest in years, with at least 12 PKK terrorists and eight security personnel killed. A terrorist was killed on Friday in the remote mountains of Sirnak province, which borders Iraq, after a firefight with security forces, a security official said.
In the southern city of Adana, which has been spared much of the violence seen in the southeast, police exchanged fire on Friday with three suspected PKK terrorists, wounding two of them, Cihan news agency said.
Turkish military officials have said that hundreds of PKK militants have returned from northern Iraq in recent months, threatening an end to the southeast's fragile peace."
 Increased interest by foreigners to buy land in occupied CyprusTurkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (01.06.04) reports that the interest by foreigners to buy land in the occupied parts of Cyprus has been increased since the 24 April referenda results.
According to real estate agents in occupied Cyprus, the foreigners are interested in buying immovable properties belonging to Greek and Turkish Cypriots mostly houses and apartments in occupied Kyrenia, while they do not show a lot of interest to buy land in occupied Nicosia. In addition, Israeli and British citizens show the biggest interest in buying properties. "Especially the Israelis set up companies in the name of Turkish Cypriots and then buy the houses they want," the real estate agents said to the paper.
The estate agents trading the Greek Cypriot properties asked from the so-called Ministry of the Interior to provide the foreigners with "permit" to buy properties immediately.
[B] COMMENTARIES, EDITORIALS AND ANALYSIS
 Columnist supports that Turkey and Israel will have a primary role in the Greater Middle East ProjectUnder the title: "For Ankara it is hard to break up with Tel-Aviv", Turkish Daily News (01.06.04) publishes the following commentary by Burak Bekdil:
"Ostensibly, the Turks are turning sour on their Jewish allies. In reality, it's business as usual between Ankara and Tel Aviv. Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan's tough words on Israeli violence against fellow Muslims are for domestic consumption only. As Washington's Greater Middle East Initiative looms, Turkey and Israel will become more attached to each other, especially under Mr Erdogan's Islamist but pragmatist governance.
The Israelis are well aware of the facts -- that Mr Erdogan's sudden bravado in defense of poor Palestinians is part of a broader game. They even helped him play to his grassroots supporters when they revealed his "tough words" to the press, naturally, in a tone of complaint -- also part of the game.
Last week, Yosef Paritzky, Israel's Infrastructure Minister, said that he was astonished when Mr Erdogan labeled Israel a terrorist state during a meeting in Ankara. Mr Paritzky said he even considered walking out of the meeting. Mr Erdogan, according to Mr Paritzky, also declined an invitation to visit Tel Aviv. All that is probably the play-acting part.
But Mr Paritzky talked reality too when he said, "Mr Erdogan's tough words would not weaken the strong military and economic ties between Israel and its sole Muslim ally." Now the man is talking!
As a matter of fact, Mr Paritzky was in Ankara to witness the signing of a $800 million deal between Israel's Dorad Energies Ltd. and Turkey's Zorlu Holding for the construction of three natural gas power stations in Israel, for many, a symbol of the close ties between Turkey and Israel.
But real-politik often surpasses the public sentiment. A parliamentary debate in Ankara over the plight of Palestinians produced a warning that excessive force would further encourage terrorist groups, but not a formal condemnation. Well, there is more action for domestic consumption too.
Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul said that he was considering upgrading Turkey's diplomatic representation to the Palestinian territories by appointing an ambassador while hinting that he might recall the ambassador to Israel for consultations. All that may give some relief to an increasingly anti-Israeli Turkish public, but will not alter in any way the fundamentals of the strategic partnership on the Ankara-Tel Aviv axis. As violence subsides, the cosmetic confrontation will subside too.
There are a number of reasons why Turkish governments, especially Mr. Erdogan's, cannot give up Jewish friends in Israel and in the United States.
Firstly, the military and security cooperation between Ankara and Tel Aviv is multi-dimensional, based largely on the perception of a "common security threat." Arabs are the political adversaries for both countries, and radical Islamist terror is a common enemy. Turkish and Jewish mourners for the victims of suicide bombings against two Istanbul synagogues last November are still cruelly fresh memories.
Secondly, Israeli defense companies are so well established within the Turkish procurement system that only God's hand could kick them out of this lucrative market. It should come as no surprise if the Turkish military soon decides to award a fresh list of multibillion dollar Air Force contracts to Israeli weapons manufacturers "without international competition."
Thirdly, and perhaps most importantly, the bigwigs in Washington think it would be in their best interests if the Turks and Israelis discreetly enhanced their alliance for a safer and more stable Middle East, now being enlarged.
It is a sine qua non for the U.S. Greater Middle East Initiative that Turkey maintains and even deepens political/security partnership with Israel. Turkey and Israel have different roles but common goals under the U.S. plan -- Turkey's role is to pose as a model Muslim state, and Israel's is to have a low-profile appearance while playing its part discreetly.
Turkey and Israel are attached to each other with so solid strings that minor things like sporadic Israeli violence or the deaths of a bunch of Palestinians cannot break them up."
 Examples of how Turkey controls the occupied areas of CyprusUnder the title "Crisis and Solution", Basaran Duzgun writing in Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS (01.06.04) reports, inter alia, the following:
"It is said that the issue of the Greek Cypriots crossing over with their identity card in stead of a passport, has been turned into a major crisis between the government and the military authorities. It is said that this was the reason for the contradictory decisions of the `Council of Ministers´. It is said that the government decided the application of the identity card having the passive support of Rauf Denktas, but a serious crisis came up when the army said 'we will order the police and not put (the decision) in to force'. '
Prime Minister Erdogan and Minister of Foreign Affairs Gul did not look very warmly to the crisis regarding the identities, during a period that the 'embargoes and the isolation' is discussed. This issue came onto the agenda during the visit of Prime Minister Talat in Ankara and minister Gul said to Talat something which meant: 'Mr Talat you are spending your energy in vain, your government has no majority in the parliament. It would be more appropriate if you were more interested in the government problem and the embargoes'. This is the information leaked from the political backstage.
The government of Turkey does not expect or plans any developments on the Cyprus problem until December. With the positive climate created after the Greek Cypriot side said NO and the Turkish Cypriot side said YES at the referendum, Turkey has high expectations to take a date from the EU. The government of Turkey thinks that "we have done our duty, now is the turn of Europe". From this point of view, the Turkish side does not think of taking any unilateral steps in Cyprus. Furthermore, it does not see positively having to deal with a governmental crisis and early elections in northern Cyprus during a period when all eyes are turned to the EU. It wants to solve the governmental problem with a formula that supports the continuation of the RTP - DP government by strengthening it. In this case there are two alternatives. The first is for Peace and Democracy Movement to be included in the RTP - DP government and the government to continue its job as a three-party coalition with 26 MPs. The second alternative is to transfer MPs. There are efforts especially for the resignation of four MPs from the National Unity Party. These four MPs who voted YES in the referendum are waiting for the developments within the NUP. It is noted that these MPs will resign if the NUP administration continues its policy against the solution and the EU.
We shall see in the next few days the road that the government will continue. If all the formulas are unsuccessful, early elections will come onto the agenda. Various circles in Ankara have already started conducting very regular public opinion polls in northern Cyprus. '".
 Columnist in CUMHURIYET supports that what is happening in Cyprus today is part of the Greater Middle East scenarioIstanbul CUMHURIYET newspaper (27.05.04) publishes the following commentary by Hikmet Cetinkaya under the title: "Eye of the United States":
"One wonders what the holding of a NATO summit in Istanbul portends.
Pointing out that the U.S. plan that began in Afghanistan is continuing in Iraq, [Cumhuriyet columnist] Guray Oz says that other countries are next in line. He adds: "European countries, especially Germany, are perturbed by this."
For some reason the documents that [columnist] Mustafa Balbay published in CUMHURIYET do not interest the media that hang on to the coattails of the JDP [Justice and Development Party] government.
The U.S. plan is obvious. The United States openly wants to use Turkey to implement its plan across the Middle East.
Germany and France are quite disconcerted by the U.S. plan. For this reason Germany and France joined the Eurasia meeting chaired by Russia, seeking an alliance against the U.S. plan.
What is happening in Cyprus today is part of this scenario. The United States has its eyes on both the Mediterranean and the Black Sea. Is [Turkish Cypriot leader] Mehmet Ali Talat aware of this?
Our proponents of a "Second Republic," who have been shouting war cries and screaming that "we must stand with the United States," have also been winking left and right even as they pretend to condemn the acts of torture in Iraq: "The United States cannot do without Turkey."
Just then Israeli Minister of Energy and Infrastructure Yossi Paritzky met with Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan in Ankara. According to the media Erdogan chided Paritzky by saying: "No government can take a decision to assassinate someone. As a Muslim I am dismayed by what you have done."
Interestingly that same day the TGNA [Turkish Grand National Assembly] discussed the acts of torture in Iraq and the Israeli attacks in Palestine. Speaking from the podium of the TGNA Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul verbally condemned the incidents of torture in Iraq and attacks in Palestine.
Republican People's Party Deputy General Chairman Onur Oymen demanded that the condemnation be issued not individually but by a resolution of the TGNA.
What happened next? All JDP members opposed a TGNA resolution condemning the United States and Israel.
For some reason such reports are not considered newsworthy by our esteemed media and escape the attention of our columnists.
The JDP government is reluctant--more correctly afraid--to condemn the United States and Israel.
Then we see that Turkey has signed an energy cooperation agreement with Israel.
The United States has been asking Turkey to "come to its side" even as it fans Kurdish nationalism in Iraq.
George W. Bush will describe the Greater Middle East Project at the G-8 summit to be held in Washington in June. Prime Minister Erdogan has accepted Bush's invitation. The Arab countries, in contrast, have greeted this invitation with indignation. Egyptian President Mubarak declared that he will not accept the invitation. Egyptian Foreign Minister Ahmed Maher announced that Tunisia and Qatar will also not be present in Washington.
The G-8 is comprised of eight industrialized countries and Russia. The G-8 summit will be held in Washington on June 8, and the U.S.-EU summit will be held in Ireland on June 15. Then the NATO summit will convene in Istanbul on June 28 and 29.
It is no coincidence that all these meetings are being held in close succession. The ploys being staged over the Mediterranean and schemes to partition Iraq into three or four pieces are part of this plan. Do the United States and Britain want to present Turkey as a model for the Greater Middle East Project or do they not? They do.
The Turkish model in that project is moderate Islam. The United States and Britain see Turkey as a target country.
For some reason, when it is in their interests, they forget that Turkey is a secular and democratic state of law.
Turkey, a NATO member and a candidate for membership in the EU, is caught in the jaws of a pincer.
The JDP government remains under the umbrella of religious orders and hangs on to the coattail of pro-U.S. Fethullah Gulen followers even as the media hangs on to the coattails of the JDP.
Everyone is happy. Now a question: "Can Turkey be both secular democratic and a moderate Islamic country?"