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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Press and Other Media, 04-11-02

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.209/04 02.11.04

[A] NEWS ITEMS

  • [01] Denktas says that the Turkish Cypriots needed a "government" which defends their "state" and "sovereignty".
  • [02] Turkish Cypriots participate in international conference of journalists.
  • [03] 'Minority' report fight rages.
  • [04] MILLIYET paper revealed a contingency plan devised to intervene in Kirkuk within 18 hours.

  • [A] NEWS ITEMS

    [01] Denktas says that the Turkish Cypriots needed a "government" which defends their "state" and "sovereignty"

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (02.11.04) reports that the Turkish Cypriot leader, Rauf Denktas has argued that at this stage the Turkish Cypriots needed a "government" which defends their "state" and "sovereignty".

    In statements yesterday after Dervis Eroglu, leader of the National Unity Party (NUP), returned to him his mission to form a so-called government, Mr Denktas expressed his sorrow because the efforts of Mr Eroglu had been unsuccessful and noted that at this stage the Turkish Cypriots needed a "government" which defends their "state" and "sovereignty".

    "Asking only the lifting of the embargoes and isolations is tantamount to surrendering. Defending the state is a condition", he argued.

    Mr Denktas said that he would decide today, after his regular meeting with the so-called prime minister of the occupation regime Mehmet Ali Talat, to delegate the mission to form a "government" to another politician.

    Mr Denktas said that according to the so-called constitution, the efforts to form a new "government" should last for 60 days, but the "assembly" could meet and decide the conduction of "elections" earlier.

    Meanwhile, in his statements during a press conference yesterday afternoon, Mr Eroglu said that the time for "early elections" came.

    [02] Turkish Cypriots participate in international conference of journalists

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (02.11.04) reports that the Turkish Cypriot Press Council has participated in the 9th conference of the World Union of Press Councils (WAPC), which took place between 24 and 26 October, 2004 in Darussalam, the capital of Tanzania.

    Mr Ismet Kotak, who represented the Turkish Cypriot Press Council, addressed the conference on the issue of "The World Media and terrorism".

    Organizations from Turkey, Finland, Israel, Nepal, India, Bangladesh, New Zealand, Australia, USA, Canada, Honolulu, Egypt, Ethiopia, Kenya, Uganda, Zimbabwe, Namibia, Congo, Botswana, Nigeria, the Ivory Coast and North Africa participated in the conference.

    [03] 'Minority' report fight rages

    Turkish Daily News newspaper (02.11.04) reports that an autonomous committee which drafted a highly controversial report over minorities and cultural rights in Turkey received vehement attacks from its own members yesterday, when a press conference was raided by a group of opponents.

    "I will close the press conference if people here do not tolerate even listening to me," said an angry Ibrahim Kaboglu, chairman of the 78-member Human Rights Advisory Board (HRAB) after the text of a speech prepared for the press conference was torn into pieces by protesting members of the same committee in front of a stunned audience.

    The HRAB administration planned the press conference to respond to weeks long criticism from its own members, media and top state officials, including government Ministers and the President, to a report presented to the Office of Prime Minister. The report was prepared by a sub-committee, called the Minority Rights and Cultural Rights Working Group, headed by Professor Baskin Oran.

    "Such a report legally does not exist," said Fahrettin Yokus, general secretary of the public workers' union Kamu-Sen and member of the HRAB, who was the person who tore Kaboglu's speech into pieces. He said that the report on minorities and cultural rights had not been voted by all members of the committee.

    The report has been at the heart of heated debates for weeks, with critics saying that it is calling for reversing those articles of the Constitution stipulating the unitary structure of the state and indivisible nature of the Turkish nation.

    It is calling for a revision of the Constitution and relevant laws so that cultural rights could be expanded and criticizes Turkey's putting reservations on international conventions on minority rights. Turkey has not yet approved the Council of Europe´s Framework Convention on Protection of National Minorities and signed a U.N. convention on the issue but put reservations on certain terms.

    It instead maintains a position based on the Treaty of Lausanne, signed by the then newly-created Turkish Republic and those Western powers against whom the "Turkish War of Independence" was won, but the report says Turkey has not fully implemented the 1923 treaty either. That treaty grants minority status only to non-Muslim communities of Turkey.

    According to the report, Turkey's practice since 1923 has not been up to the Lausanne Treaty, whose Article 39/4 made it clear that all Turkish citizens were free to use the language they wish in their commercial exchanges, open and closed meetings and in all press and broadcasting institutions.

    According to the report, the whole debate on Kurdish broadcasting and education would have been pointless if this article had been properly implemented.

    In messages marking the anniversary of the Turkish Republic 81 years ago, President Ahmet Necdet Sezer and Chief of Staff General Hilmi Ozkok sent veiled criticisms to the report, saying there could be no compromise on the unitary structure of the state and dismissing the report's suggestion for an all-encompassing identity emphasizing belonging to Turkey instead of "Turkish" identity.

    The report said that even the most innocent demands for a distinct identity have been viewed with a "paranoid" suspicion that are meant to divide the country and promote terrorism.

    [04] MILLIYET paper revealed a contingency plan devised to intervene in Kirkuk within 18 hours

    Turkish daily MILLIYET newspaper (01.11.04) reports that the Turkish army has prepared a plan to intervene in Northern Iraq in case the Kurds attempt to change the demographic structure of the area. The paper writes the following:

    "In response to the recent steps taken by the Kurdish groups in northern Iraq with a view to changing the demographic structure of the region, especially Kirkuk, the General Staff has devised a contingency plan to carry out a military intervention in the region using a 40,000-strong force.

    The demands recently made by the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) and the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) regarding Kirkuk, which has rich oil reserves and is mainly populated by Turkomans, have caused serious concerns in Ankara, which were fuelled by the comments made by KDP leader Mas'ud Barzani, who said in a recent visit to Turkey that "Kirkuk was the heart of the Kurds."

    Subtitle: Qandil mountain range is also singled out as a target

    In response to those developments, the General Staff drew up a contingency plan to carry out a military intervention by sending two corps into the area. Preparations under the plan, which contemplates sending a 40,000-strong force from the Second Army stationed in Malatya into northern Iraq during a possible operation, have already been completed. It was reported that the military units to be involved in the operation had not been moved to the border area yet, but they would be ready to carry out a military intervention 18 hours after the General Staff has given the go-ahead to start the operation. Sources said that the camps of the Workers Party of Kurdistan/People's Congress of Kurdistan, a terrorist organization, in the Qandil mountain range would also be attacked during the possible operation, which is planned to be conducted jointly by ground and air units.

    The preparations under the plan were reviewed in a high-level meeting chaired by Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan on 14 October and attended by Chief of the General Staff General Hilmi Ozkok, Deputy Chief of the General Staff General Ilker Basbug, Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul, Defence Minister Vecdi Gonul, Foreign Ministry Under Secretary Ali Tuygan, and Osman Koruturk, Turkey's special envoy to Iraq. Erdogan instructed government officials to ensure coordination between the governmental departments concerned in parallel with the preparations being made by the Turkish Armed Forces. The developments about the matter were also discussed in the National Security Council's monthly meeting in October.

    Subtitle: Buyukanit boosts morale

    Chief of the Army General Yasar Buyukanit has recently flown to the Second Army's headquarters in order to raise morale among the troops. Following a briefing about the preparations related to the possible operation, Buyukanit commented on some statements made after the release of some former Democracy Party MPs as well as the related events.

    Meanwhile, it was reported that the United States was not in favour of letting the Kurds to control the oil reserves. According to sources, the United States, which is expected to import a larger part of its oil consumption after 2012, came to the conclusion that leaving the oil reserves in northern Iraq, where cost of production is $1.5 per barrel, to Kurdish control could eventually lead to problems. It was learned that the US Government was looking with favour upon Ankara's policies vis-ŕ-vis northern Iraq."


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