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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Press and Other Media, 04-12-13

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.238/04 11-12-13.12.04

[A] NEWS ITEMS

  • [01] Erdogan optimistic for the result of the 17 December; Reiterates that Turkey will make no step in Cyprus before the EU Summit.
  • [02] Erdogan reacts harshly to the Kurdish advertisement in the foreign press.
  • [03] Cicek says Turkey does not want EU membership at all costs.
  • [04]v Rauf Denktas reacts to Kurds comparing themselves to Turkish Cypriots.
  • [05] Turkey: Kurdish women file petition comprising demands about EU.
  • [06] Improved safety measures for the building of the British High Commission in occupied Lefkosia
  • [07] The population in occupied Cyprus surpass 625 thousand marks.
  • [08] USA officials held a meeting with the Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Industry regarding the trade of Turkish Cypriot products.
  • [B] COMMENTARIES, EDITORIALS AND ANALYSIS

  • [09] Editorial says Kurdish issue constitutes the basis of Turkey“s political and economic problem.

  • [A] NEWS ITEMS

    [01] Erdogan optimistic for the result of the 17 December; Reiterates that Turkey will make no step in Cyprus before the EU Summit

    According to Anatolia News Agency (10.12.04), the Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has said that Turkey expected a "clear and unconditional message" from the EU summit on 17 December as regards the date for starting its full membership negotiations.

    In statements on Friday after meeting in Brussels with Belgian Premier Guy Verhofstadt and the President of the European Commission, Jose Manuel Durao Barroso, Mr Erdogan reiterated that Turkey would not take any new steps on Cyprus before 17 December.

    Mr Verhofstadt, who discussed with his Turkish counterpart the relations between Turkey and the EU on the eve of the EU summit, expressed Belgian government's full support to Turkey.

    According to Anatolia News Agency, Mr Barroso told Mr Erdogan the following: "We announced our report on Turkey. Other views which emerged after the announcement of the report are nothing to do with us. Now, every country is exerting efforts to make their demands and sensibilities taken into consideration. We, as the Commission, stand firm behind our report. Every country can interpret it in line with its own priorities. But what is important is the result. 'It will be good for Turkey to make a gesture about Cyprus issue. Turkey takes what it wants as a result. The other issues are not important. They are generally intended for home consumption. You should be interested in what you really want".

    Mr Erdogan expressed Turkey's point of view to Mr Barroso, noting: "Turkey's position was expressed in Helsinki and Copenhagen. When the report of the Commission about Turkey was published, Mr Verheugen stressed that 'nothing remained on the table'. We fulfilled our responsibilities. We even extended Customs Union to 25 countries. So we want clarity. 'Turkey will not take any steps about Cyprus issue until December the 17th. A just decision which Turkey deserves should be made on December 17th".

    Meanwhile, NTV television (12.12.04) broadcast that speaking at a dinner meeting organized in Istanbul by the Turkish-French Trade Association, Mr Erdogan expressed the opinion that there was nothing left on the table for Turkey to complete for its EU accession bid and added that the 25 EU members should do whatever is necessary in this regard.

    Mr Erdogan said that the Copenhagen political criteria were implemented jointly with the Turkish government and the opposition.

    "The government and the opposition instituted together all the constitutional and legal amendments", he noted criticizing the attitude of "certain EU countries" with regard to granting a negotiation date to Turkey.

    "We are in the middle of the game, and they are changing the rules for a penalty kick by saying that the conditions for a penalty are now different than in the past. This is unacceptable. It is not consistent with the seriousness required of a state", he argued.

    Referring to France's attitude concerning a negotiation date for Turkey, Mr Erdogan said that France is at the top of the countries that invest in Turkey, and added: "Our approach toward France is special. We wonder why such things occurred in the EU process. In fact, this greatly affected me. I was not expecting this. Probably, this will also be settled in some way. I preserve this hope".

    Meanwhile, under the title "The decision on 17 December will be positive", Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (13.12.04) reports that addressing the "Local Authorities Meeting" at Konevi Cultural Center, Mr Erdogan has expressed the hope that the decision which will be taken on 17 December will be positive for Turkey.

    Alleging that an EU without Turkey would be a "Christian Club", Mr Erdogan added that in case Turkey does not take the result it wants, something which "is very unlikely", it will rename the Copenhagen Political Criteria to Ankara Political Criteria and continue its way.

    [02] Erdogan reacts harshly to the Kurdish advertisement in the foreign press

    Turkish NTV television (11.12.04) broadcast that the Prime Minister of Turkey, Recep Tayyip Erdogan has "harshly reacted" to the advertisement published in various European newspapers under the title "What do the Kurds want". Claiming that everyone "is trying to grab something from Turkey on the eve of 17 December", Mr Erdogan accused those who placed the advertisements of fighting over positions.

    In a statement at Istanbul Ataturk Airport upon his return from Brussels, Mr Erdogan said that Turkey's views on the draft EU final statement were conveyed and that he his hopeful about the results.

    Referring to his meetings in Brussels he said: "Despite the fact that there are different approaches, we have observed that these different approaches are advancing in a positive direction. We stressed that the negotiation process is undoubtedly the means to the path toward membership and that a decision on this negotiation process should be made on 17 December without the need to resort to a second decision. We especially reminded them that no new condition that is not included in the Copenhagen criteria should be placed in front of Turkey".

    Referring to the advertisement published in various European dailies under the title "What do the Kurds want" signed by former Democracy Party (DEP) MP's, Mr Erdogan argued:

    "Certain centers that want to sabotage the expansion of democracy and the EU process in Turkey as well as the tranquility and stability in the country have attempted to stage an ugly plot especially through the foreign media. There are those who have been mixed up with certain gangs that view 17 December as the last opportunity to grab something from Turkey in the hope that they can obtain a position for themselves. This is their true aim. Let them not raise their hopes. I am saying this with a clear conscience. We will not be deceived by this plot. Turkey will not be deceived by this plot. This nation will not be deceived by this plot".

    [03] Cicek says Turkey does not want EU membership at all costs

    According to Ankara Anatolia news agency (11.12.04), Turkish Justice Minister and Government Spokesman Cemil Cicek said on Saturday, ''Turkey considers the EU important, however, we are not that naive to want the EU membership at any cost.''

    Speaking at an international seminar organized at the parliament by the Ministry of Justice, the Turkish Parliamentarians' Union and the Institute of ASSER on ''Impacts of Accession to the EU on National Law Arrangements of New Member States'', Cicek said, ''we have been waiting for results of the EU Summit on December 17th. I hope that the results would be beneficial for both parties. Turkey considers the EU important, however, we are not that naive to want the EU membership at any cost.''

    ''Turkey has fulfilled all its commitments in its EU membership process except for the Criminal Execution Law. This law will be debated at the Parliament on Monday,'' he said.

    Referring to recent objections of some EU-member countries, Cicek said, ''we can understand those objections to some extent. They can be stemmed from necessities of domestic policies and lack of information about Turkey's future contributions to the EU. However, the other objections are totally unacceptable. The agreement between Turkey and the EU includes fulfillment of the Copenhagen political criteria. Turkey has already been an European country in regard to its norms and its policy.

    [04] Rauf Denktas reacts to Kurds comparing themselves to Turkish Cypriots

    According to NTV (10.12.04), Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktas, reacted to the remark "Ankara should grant to the Kurds the same rights that it is demanding for the Turkish Cypriots" in the advertorial posted in two foreign papers by some 200 Kurds from Turkey and Europe, Leyla Zana among them.

    Declaring that there are no similarities between the Turkish Cypriots and the Kurds in Turkey, Denktas said they [the Kurds] are muddying the issue by advancing wrong examples.

    "We are not a minority inside the Greek Cypriot Republic. And we are not asking for minority rights. If the Kurds consider themselves a minority, they are making a mistake, for they are an inseparable part of a great nation. That is the treatment they have been accorded. To seek separation is to adopt an idea pumped from outside. They started this when I was 10".

    I thought esteemed Zana was a bit clever lady. But it seems she has no intention other than to muddy the issue with such wrong examples. Shame on her. By advancing such ideas she is undermining the cause of people here who are fighting for their rights and freedoms. She has no right to do that.

    [05] Turkey: Kurdish women file petition comprising demands about EU

    According to NTV (9.12.04) a private TV channel a nine-strong delegation from the DEHAP's [Democratic People's Party] women's branch, who traveled from Hakkari to Ankara, submitted a dossier entitled "I am a Kurdish women; I am from Turkey; and I want to join the EU with my own identity" to the Petitions Committee of the National Assembly.

    A sentence, which read "We call for an end to the policy of isolation imposed on Abdullah Ocalan, leader of the Kurdish people," captured attention among the demands outlined in the four-page dossier distributed by the members of the delegation.

    The group, who arrived in Ankara early in the morning, went to the office of Bulent Arinc, speaker of the National Assembly, in order to have a meeting with him. Their request was denied due to Arinc's tight schedule, but a representative of the delegation was allowed to submit the dossier to the Petitions Committee.

    In a statement they made after delivering the dossier, the female members of the DEHAP pointed out that the process of joining the EU would reach a crucial juncture after a limited number of days, adding: "In connection with that process, we have drawn up a dossier, which contains the demands of women living in 12 eastern provinces." A sentence, which read "We call for an end to the policy of isolation imposed on Abdullah Ocalan, leader of the Kurdish people," caught attention among the requests outlined in the four-page dossier distributed by the members of the delegation.

    [06] Improved safety measures for the building of the British High Commission in occupied Lefkosia

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (11.12.04) reports that improved safety measures were being put into practice last Friday around the building of the British High Commission (BHC) in occupied Lefkosia.

    As the paper writes two Lorries from the British Bases Area in Dhekelia brought concrete blocks to line the pavement in front of the building. The works are taking places with the cooperation of the "police" and the municipality of occupied Lefkosia.

    According to information received by the BHC these measures are necessary after the attacks against UK missions in Istanbul and Jeddah and similar measures will be taken to UK missions around the world.

    [07] The population in occupied Cyprus surpass 625 thousand marks

    Turkish Cypriot daily AFRIKA newspaper (11.12.04) under the banner headline "Our population surpassed 625 thousand" publishes a statement made by the so-called Ministry of Tourism and Finance of the occupation regime and writes about the persons who entered into and departed from the occupied part of Cyprus during the last eleven months of this year.

    According to the statement, 544,510 persons entered into and 126,892 persons departed from the occupied part of Cyprus between January and November 2004. Meaning that the number of persons who entered occupied Cyprus and stayed there are 417,618. Adding to this number, the population figure in occupied part of Cyprus, which according to "official statistics" is 208,000, the population of the occupied part of Cyprus surpasses 625 thousand marks.

    Of persons who entered occupied Cyprus during the last eleven months of the year 2004, 389, 058 are Turkish citizens while 155,452 are foreigners. During last October 39.318 Turkish citizens and 7,010 foreigners entered into the occupied area.

    The numbers of the persons that entered occupied Cyprus increased 28% compared to last year's figures. In addition the hotels“ occupancy was increased to 10.9%.

    [08] USA officials held a meeting with the Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Industry regarding the trade of Turkish Cypriot products

    Turkish Cypriot daily HALKIN SESI newspaper (11.12.04) reports that USA officials met on Friday in the occupied area with a delegation from the Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Industry (KIBSO) where they held a meeting about the issues of marketing abroad of products that are produced by Turkish Cypriots They also exchanged views on the development of the market in the occupied area

    According to a statement issued by the KIBSO, the issues of entering of the Turkish Cypriots into the world market, the selling of goods, introducing of new techniques on the issue of marketing and the possibilities of getting good credit standing were some of the topics that were taken up at the meeting.

    Mr Michel Dixon who works in the USA Embassy to Lefkosia attended the meeting.


    [B] COMMENTARIES, EDITORIALS AND ANALYSIS

    [09] Editorial says Kurdish issue constitutes the basis of Turkey“s political and economic problem

    According to an editorial in Ozgur Politika (10.12.04), the Kurds living in Turkey, want their identity, culture, and their views be taken into account regarding Turkey“s relation with the account regarding EU. The editorial says: "One week remains until 17 December, which is a cornerstone in relations between the European Union and Turkey. The preliminary preparations are coming to an end. The Permanent Representatives Committee, which met in Brussels yesterday and the day before, discussed the final shape of the draft final statement. Following this rough work by the ambassadors, the foreign ministers, who will gather together on 13 and 14 December, will then review the document and forward it to the leaders for approval.

    In fact, the result is already clear. The draft final statement prepared by the Netherlands, which has the term presidency, has undergone changes three times to date.

    Turkey is given messages on topics such as continuing the reform process, basic freedoms, human rights, and torture. In addition, the exertion of political pressure is also noted. But this is not sufficient. Because there is no mention of the Kurdish issue, which constitutes the basis of Turkey's political and economic problems.

    The "hot potato" approach adapted for the Kurds by German Prime Minister Gerhard Schroeder in 1999 is noteworthy here as well. In other words, there is still insistence on the policy that whoever touches the Kurds burns his hand. Well, then, why is this, and how long is it going to go on?

    Scientists, in studying the universe, have never said that the sun, a mass of burning hydrogen and helium with a central temperature of 10 million degrees, cannot be touched. They have merely spoken of the difficulties of reaching it. Thus an open door has been left even for a journey to the sun, which is in fact impossible. Consequently, for the EU governments to have more fear of the Kurds than the scientists have vis-ą-vis the sun is an incomprehensible approach.

    For Brussels to pretend not to see this problem is truly grave. And if it keeps a solution of the Kurdish question merely within the scope of human rights and torture, this is even graver. And if the matter is being avoided in order to curry favor with Turkey, this should in fact be considered as the greatest disservice that has yet been done to Turkey.

    Turkey may not be aware of it, but the longer a solution to the Kurdish question is postponed, the path to membership will be lengthened by twice as much. The reason for this is very simple: Even if Turkey should demonstrate the political will for the problem to be resolved, the practical steps will take quite some time. And until the practical work is completed, no one will make Turkey an EU member.

    The logic of the negotiations is in fact based on this: "If a country wants to be a member, it has to come in with a clean record. In other words, merely working to clean up one's record is not enough in and of itself; this effort also has to be brought to completion".

    Furthermore, this is expected not only in the political field, but in the economic, social, and cultural spheres as well. The reform process in Turkey is going to be taken up point-by-point during the negotiations process. Only when one issue has been resolved and a passing grade obtained the next item on the agenda will be taken up. This is the mechanism.

    The Kurds are, justifiably, intervening in this process. Consequently, it is essential that their identity, and their views and suggestions, be taken into account. A "by-pass" [in English] approach such as in the Lausanne Treaty will never be accepted. It is just these messages that will be conveyed on Schuman Square in Brussels, the center of the EU's decision-making apparatus, on 11 December. In order for them to be conveyed, and understood, mass participation by Kurds living in Europe is of vital importance.

    /SK


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