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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Press and Other Media, 05-02-18

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.34/05 18.02.05

[A] NEWS ITEMS

  • [01] Turkish Cypriot political party leaders debate their party´s programme before the so-called elections.
  • [02] The American ambassador to Nicosia says they encourage the American businessmen to do business in the occupied part of Cyprus.
  • [03] The Turkish and Turkish Cypriot Mass Media on the visit of representatives of USA companies to occupied Cyprus.
  • [04] Rasit Pertev: "They recognize us, even if they do not recognize us on paper". The Turkish Cypriots see the EU as a ground for undermining the Greek Cypriots and President Papadopoulos.
  • [B] COMMENTARIES, EDITORIALS AND ANALYSIS

  • [05] Columnist in VATAN assesses Mumcu´s resignation. Cyprus among the issues of disagreement.

  • [A] NEWS ITEMS

    [01] Turkish Cypriot political party leaders debate their party´s programme before the so-called elections

    Istanbul NTV television (16.02.05) broadcast a live debate between the leaders of the seven Turkish Cypriot parties running in the 20 February so-called elections, namely: RTP-UF (Republican Turkish Party-United Forces) leader Mehmet Ali Talat, NUP (National Unity Party) leader Dervis Eroglu, DP (Democratic Party) leader Serdar Denktas, PDM (Peace and Democracy Movement) leader Mustafa Akinci, CLP-UCP (Communal Liberation Party-United Cyprus Party) Leftist Forces alliance leader Huseyin Angolemli, NP (New Party) leader Prof. Nuri Cevikel, and NJP (Nationalist Justice Party) leader Ada Tepe.

    The political party leaders were asked to explain why their party wants to win the "elections".

    Akinci started by saying that the Turkish Cypriots' queuing in southern Cyprus for passports, jobs, and health services is an indication of north's "political, economic, and social bankruptcy." And warning that with Turkey's expected recognition of the Republic of Cyprus before 3 October the Turkish capital too will flow to southern Cyprus, Akinci says the developments are not favorable to the Turkish Cypriots, and hence they want to win the elections to pursue a multidimensional policy aimed at solving these problems. He adds that the present "government" is only following a unidirectional policy; its sole agenda is to surmount the isolation. Whereas, in addition to fighting isolation, the Turkish side should put pressure on the Greek Cypriot side by pursuing a correct policy on the missing persons issue, opening new gates, joining the mine clearing project, opening Varosha, and proposing the joint use of Famagusta Port and Tymbou Airport for international traffic. Akinci calls "for an active policy" for solving internal and external problems and opposes the policy of "freezing" the Cyprus problem. Elaborating on these ideas, Akinci says in the second round of the debate that the Turkish Cypriots, to enhance their international image and not to appear as a community controlled by Turkey, should claim a say in their own institutions while keeping warm ties with Turkey and should also ensure equal say with the Greek Cypriots in the future Cyprus.

    On his part, Mr Angolemli says the present political "stagnation" benefits neither Cyprus nor Turkey and the way to escape the stagnation is to "unilaterally implement a great many provisions of the Annan plan, given that most of the Turkish Cypriot people, some 65 percent, said yes to it at the referendum. We are entering these elections with this in mind, for the present stagnation carries with it the danger of appending the Turkish Cypriots to the Greek Cypriot side. The measures to overcome this stagnation are clear enough once we secure a majority in the Assembly after 20 February. In taking these measures, our arguments must also be in line with the international agreements and laws. If we take this sort of measures, we will draw a positive, not negative, reaction from the international community. What are these measures? One of them is to put into effect the constitution of the Turkish Cypriot State, the would-be cofounder of the United Cyprus Republic, which we endorsed at the referendum. That constitution is a civil and democratic constitution, and with its implementation the Turkish Cypriot people will clearly show to the world that they are administering themselves. That, in turn, will demonstrate that we are a real side in the negotiations. In that way we will also be overcoming a number of difficulties. At the same time, together with the constitution, the Turkish Cypriot State, as a cofounder state rejecting separatism, should be declared. In short, the "TRNC" ["Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus"] should be transformed into a constituent state." Angolemli believes that this will also increase Turkey's manoeuvre room until 3 October and deprive Papadopoulos of his claim that the lifting of the isolation would be the recognition of the "TRNC."

    Mr Nuri Cevikel, a settler who allied with the RTP during the referendum and then defected to form his own party, criticizes the Turkish Cypriot "governments" for corrupt practices and failure to properly administer the north Cyprus despite "unlimited resources provided by the Turkish Republic." He says "President" Denktas' and these governments' domestic and foreign policies have been a "fiasco." He especially laments the fact that with the opening of the barbed wire with southern Cyprus the Turkish settlers have been turned into outcasts without identity. He also complains that despite the settlers voting for the Annan plan, the list of settlers slated for United Cyprus citizenship has not yet been made public. Cevikel says that his party is running in the elections to establish a proper system at home and to defend the Turkish side's rights at the negotiation table.

    Mr Ada Tepe, whose party is affiliated with the NAP [Nationalist Action Party], says the international "plot" being hatched against the entire Turkish people in Cyprus and Turkey and attempts to create rifts between the Turks of Cyprus and Turkey are pushing Cyprus into a "darkness." He stresses that the Turkish Cypriots should instead work for the recognition of the "TRNC" adding that the NJP is running in the elections to undermine the plot that aims at patching up the Turkish Cypriots to the Republic of Cyprus.

    Exposing his views, Mr Mehmet Ali Talat says the "elections" are very important for the Cyprus problem because these elections are ushering in a serious change of power and will once more prove that the Turkish Cypriot "people" voted yes at the referendum consciously and not because they were deceived by the promises from the EU and the United States, as some claim. He says the confirmation of the new pro-peace and pro-EU policy by the Turkish Cypriot people "will be very important. That is why these elections are important." He says it is essential that after elections a strong government is formed that would "seek solution and EU membership, speak a contemporary language, and integrate Cyprus with the world. If such a government emerges from these elections, that would not only make justice to the elections but also accelerate the process of integration with the world -- and that means solution and peace."

    Asked why the "isolation" has not been lifted so far, Talat says the parliamentary arithmetic was not enough to achieve that objective, adding that more time is needed for it and that the EU, the Americans, and the British are determined to lift the isolation and embargoes.

    Angolemli replies that the isolations cannot be lifted by the grace of others; they can only be lifted with the repeal of the UN Security Council Resolutions 541 and 550. He adds that the Turkish Cypriots themselves should take the initiative in this direction by transforming the "TRNC" into the Turkish Cypriot State as envisaged in the internationally-supported Annan plan, explaining that Resolutions 541 and 550 imposes isolation on the "TRNC" for being a separatist entity. Once the Turkish Cypriot State is announced as a constituent part of the United Cyprus Republic the isolations will end automatically and Turkey's signing of the Ankara agreement will not harm the Turkish Cypriots.

    On his part, Mr Serdar Denktas, says the Turkish Cypriots and Turkey should jointly work to chart a policy for the period up to the 3 October so as to pressure the EU and UN into bringing the Greek Cypriots back to the table. He says this will be the task of the next government. He also says that the Cyprus problem is a problem between the Turkish Cypriots and Greek Cypriots, not between Turkey and Cypriots. Noting that Papadopoulos is trying to disregard the Turkish Cypriots and talk directly with Turkey, Serdar Denktas says Turkey should tell Papadopoulos that the problem is between the Turkish Cypriots and Greek Cypriots and that its sole responsibility is to support the Turkish Cypriots' efforts for a solution.

    Then speaks Mr Dervis Eroglu, who says that with the EU membership the Greek Cypriots' hands are strengthened and the only way to force them back to the table would be for the UN Security Council to approve the UN Secretary-General's report on Cyprus and revise Resolutions 541 and 550.

    In the third round of the debate, Akinci warns that if the Turkish Cypriots do not act themselves and instead let the developments take their own course then they will lose even their 1960 rights. He, therefore, calls for an "active struggle" for a solution on the basis of the Annan plan.

    Talat responds by saying that his government leaves nothing to chance, it is working intensively for the lifting of the isolation not only to improve the Turkish Cypriot economy but also to undermine Papadopoulos' argument that as EU member he can negotiate with the Turkish side from a position of strength. He says his government's aim is to "eliminate the terror and misguidance Papadopoulos has injected into the Greek Cypriot community and to force the south Cyprus back to the table."

    Angolemli doubts the isolations could be lifted in defiance of the international law, adding that foreign officials are now frequently visiting Talat to help him in the elections. Angolemli then says hat unemployment is the major issue in the north. Pointing out that Turkey's unemployed are flocking to the north to replace the Turkish Cypriots who are now easily emigrating to Europe on their Cyprus passports or seeking jobs in southern Cyprus, Angolemli says an end should be put to immigration and illegal labor influx from Turkey.

    Eroglu says the real economic progress was achieved under the NUP "governments", adding that to find a viable solution to the Cyprus problem all the Turkish Cypriot parties should work hand in hand and forge an internal unity and peace so as to force the Greek Cypriots back to the table. Eroglu hastens to add that as long as UN Secretary-General's report is not turned into a UN decision the Turkish Cypriots cannot free themselves from isolation and embargoes. He says Talat's claim that this can be done and his contacts with foreign officials are a mere attempt to raise people's hopes and secure an advantage at the elections. Eroglu adds that for a solution to be found by forcing the Greek Cypriots back to table, the "TRNC" should also work in tandem with Turkey, the United States, and the EU.

    Talat concludes by saying that they are pursuing a policy in keeping with the 24 April referendum and in harmony with Turkey, adding that there is a need for a strong and stable government to maintain that policy.

    Eroglu says the NUP slogan is "reconciliation and progress" and calls for solidarity between the political parties.

    Concluding, Serdar Denktas says a solution in Cyprus is only possible if it is accepted by the Turkish Cypriots and supported by Turkey.

    [02] The American ambassador to Nicosia says they encourage the American businessmen to do business in the occupied part of Cyprus

    Under the banner title "Support to the solution from the USA", Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (18.02.05) reports that the American ambassador to Nicosia, Michael Klosson visited yesterday the offices of KIBRIS Media Group for breakfast and made important statements. The paper writes the following:

    "Stressing that they believe in the solution of the Cyprus problem, America's ambassador to Nicosia Michael Klosson noted that they would help the UN Secretary - General Kofi Annan to proceed on this road. Ambassador Klossson said that they are working in the direction of the lifting of the isolations applied on the Turkish Cypriots.

    Klossson stressed that they encourage the American companies to do business in Northern Cyprus. The ambassador noted that some American companies came yesterday to the island and made some investigations. Noting that they supported the trade in both sides of the island through the Green Line, the ambassador cited as example the project which began with the contribution of the USA so that the products produced in the north to be possible to be sold in the south.

    Ambassador Michael Klosson who was a guest of KIBRIS Media Group, met at the breakfast with the General Director of KIBRIS Media Group, Bilge Nevzat, the director, Fehim Nevzat, the Editor-in-chief of KIBRIS newspaper, Basaran Duzgun, the Editor-in-Chief of CYPRUS TODAY newspaper, Gill Fraser, the columnist, Hasan Hasturer, Emine Davut Yitmen and the program producer Aysu Basri Akter. Klosson was accompanied by Craig L. M. Kuhel, director for public relations and Ipek Uzunoglu, program responsible.

    The General Director of KIBRIS Media Group, Bilge Nevzat, the Editor-in-chief of KIBRIS newspaper, Basaran Duzgun and the Editor-in-Chief of CYPRUS TODAY newspaper, Gill Fraser briefed ambassador Klosson on the KIBRIS Media Group.

    Exchange of views regarding leading issues on the agenda of the country took place during the breakfast. Ambassador Klosson replied in a sincere manner to questions regarding the issues of the trade, the direct flights and the Cyprus problem".

    [03] The Turkish and Turkish Cypriot Mass Media on the visit of representatives of USA companies to occupied Cyprus

    The Mass Media in Turkey and occupied Cyprus (18.02.05) cover widely the visit of some representatives of USA companies to occupied Cyprus.

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper under the title "The first blow to the isolation", writes that a delegation of representatives of American companies and the World Trade Market visited the "TRNC" searching for business possibilities. The delegation was escorted by Mr Amer Kayani, the trade attaché of the USA Embassy to Ankara. The paper also writes that the delegation went to the pseudostate from the occupied Tymbou airport with a plane named "Lefke" and was welcomed there by members of the Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Commerce, Turkish businessmen and a member of the office of the American Embassy in occupied Cyprus.

    Under the title "McDonald's doping to the elections", AFRIKA quotes the statements of the Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Commerce Chairman Mr Ali Erel who said that there is no obstacle left for the non opening of branch offices of American companies in occupied Cyprus. "No obstacle is left even for the opening of a McDonald's branch in the north'The business depends on the performance of our companies", he said.

    KIBRISLI, under the title "Even a McDonald's branch can be opened in north Cyprus", reports about Mr Ali Erel's statements after the arrival of the USA delegation in occupied Cyprus and quotes him saying that the pseudostate is going from now on to a different process.

    HALKIN SESI under the title "First trade step from the USA", writes about the visit of the USA delegation to occupied Cyprus and reports that the chairman of the Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Industry Mr Salih Tunar stated that this is an important step for the future and added that a mutual committee must be established in order to take decisions for a concrete cooperation.

    YENI DUZEN writes that a delegation of USA companies visited occupied Cyprus from Istanbul searching for business opportunities. It also writes that the delegation, which held various meetings in the pseudostate, did not make any statements.

    VATAN, under the title "'and the visit took place!", writes that visit of the USA delegation, which was discussed widely for weeks now, took finally place yesterday and reports about the contacts the American delegation held in occupied Cyprus.

    ORTAM, VOLKAN, GUNES and CUMHURIYET newspapers, covered the issue in their inside pages.

    In addition the Turkish papers also covered the event.

    HURRIYET newspaper under the title "10 USA firms at the TRNC", reports that 10 famous USA firms, which are active in Turkey were sent to the pseudostate aiming for the lifting of the "isolation" and for the use of the 30.5 million dollars USA aid to be used for trade. It also writes that the visit caused the strong reaction of the Greek Cypriot side.

    MILLIYET under the title "The USA came, the Greek Cypriots went mad", writes that the visit of the USA delegation to the pseudostate through the occupied Tymbou airport made the Greek Cypriots furious who said that the entrance was illegal and described the visit as an exhibition of hostile behaviour.

    Subsequently, as the Ankara Anatolia news agency (17.02.05) reported, welcoming the representatives of U.S. companies, the Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Commerce Chairman Ali Erel stated inter alia that the Turkish Cypriots would look for business opportunities with the U.S. businessmen. Saying that the Greek Cypriots gave a message to the whole world that "relations with north Cyprus should be established via their administration", Erel alleged that the result of especially the 24 April referendums showed that the world could no more have relations with Turkish Cypriots in that way.

    ''There is no need for continuation of our isolation,'' he said.

    Expressing belief that increasing the economic power of north Cyprus would have a positive impact on the solution of the Cyprus controversy, Erel said that the Greek Cypriots should understand that ''direct relations with North Cyprus had started.'' Erel also said: "The visit of the Americans does not have any political intention.''

    The representatives of U.S. companies departed from occupied Cyprus in the evening of the same day.

    In addition, as Ankara Anatolia news agency (17.02.05) reported, the Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan made statements upon his return to Turkey on Thursday ,after paying a visit to Albania and Bosnia-Herzegovina, about the visit of the representatives of several U.S. companies in occupied Cyprus.

    When a journalist asked the Turkish Prime Minister to assess the visit, Erdogan said: ''These are positive developments. We wish this not to remain as a step made only by the United States. Our European friends should also make such steps as they made promises to us. If such steps are made in the economy and trade areas now, they are positive developments in line with our expectations. We want this process to continue.''

    [04] Rasit Pertev: "They recognize us, even if they do not recognize us on paper". The Turkish Cypriots see the EU as a ground for undermining the Greek Cypriots and President Papadopoulos

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (18.02.05) reports that the so-called Minister of Agriculture and Coordinator of the EU Financial aid, Mr Rasit Pertev, in a statement made yesterday to "TAK", said that the EU supports the Turkish Cypriots in a political sense and is against Mr Papadopoulos, who "with his old-fashioned views is against the EU values based on the culture of dialogue".

    Noting that Europe respects more now the arguments of the Turkish Cypriots than before as a result of the developments and the contacts they had in the last year, Mr Pertev added: "They recognize us even if they do not recognize us on paper".


    [B] COMMENTARIES, EDITORIALS AND ANALYSIS

    [05] Columnist in VATAN assesses Mumcu´s resignation. Cyprus among the issues of disagreement

    Istanbul VATAN newspaper (16.02.05) publishes the following commentary by Bilal Cetin under the title: "The first fault line has been broken in the JDP":

    "Tayyip Erdogan and his colleagues had aimed to melt in a single pot the different tendencies that the party set off with and to turn the JDP [Justice and Development Party] into a strong and stable party. For the time being the "melting" process has not achieved any results. The tendencies are still quite alive within the JDP. And the most influential tendency is the "National View."

    Despite the fact that the public has not been given clear information in this regard, the different tendencies within the JDP are exposed like fault lines almost every time a critical issue appears on the agenda. Tayyip Erdogan faced the risk of a break along the fault line almost every time discussions were held on critical issues -- from the motion crisis during the Iraqi war to the EU-related arrangements, from certain critical laws related to democratization to the government's Cyprus policy, and even to issues related to the Islamic headgear, adultery, and the Imam Hatip schools.

    Finally the fault line, where the highest amount of stress had built up, broke in the JDP yesterday. Culture and Tourism Minister Erkan Mumcu who had been distressed with the policies pursued by the government and the party for a long time announced that he is resigning from the government and from the party.

    Mumcu had been distressed with the Iraqi policy pursued both by the government and his party. He had talked to Tayyip Erdogan and Abdullah Gul about the dangers of the policies that are being pursued, but he was not able to achieve any results. For a while Mumcu has been expressing his objection to certain measures that are being taken within the framework of the government's economic policy, to its Kurdish policy, and to the steps that are being taken regarding Cyprus.

    The intensive and firm discussions that were held during the Council of Ministers meeting the day before yesterday constituted the last drop and after holding consultations with certain deputies he trusts, Mumcu sent a letter of resignation to the Prime Minister's Office and the TGNA [Turkish Grand National Assembly] Speaker's Office yesterday.

    There is no doubt that Mumcu's resignation will constitute a critical turning point in terms of the JDP. It appears that a moderate earthquake will hit the JDP.

    This is because Erkan Mumcu does not act alone within the JDP. He acts together with a group of deputies that are described as the "Nationalist Wing." According to some there are 35 to 40 deputies in this group, while others claim that there are 15 to 20 deputies.

    A source close to Erkan Mumcu claims that a group of 35 to 40 persons, among them certain liberals, will resign from the JDP in the days ahead. Despite the fact that the number is a little exaggerated, it appears that the resignation of the deputies is inevitable. JDP officials also believe that Malatya Deputy Mirac Akdogan, Yozgat Deputy Mehmet Erdemir, Hatay Deputy Fuat Gecen, Bursa Deputy Ertugrul Yalcinbayir, and Mugla Deputy Hasan Ozyer primarily as well 10 to 15 additional deputies will resign after Mumcu.

    A New Party or Motherland Party?

    The truth is that Erkan Mumcu's resignation was not a surprise. Everyone has been expecting this for a while. Tayyip Erdogan also knew that Mumcu and a group of deputies that acted together with Mumcu within the party were distressed and that they could resign at any time. The only thing he did not know was the time of their resignation.

    There is no doubt that Mumcu will not spend the rest of his life as an ordinary and independent deputy. Neither will he say goodbye to politics at the end of the term.

    So, what will he do?

    He will primarily wait for his colleagues within the JDP to follow him and to resign. There are various speculations regarding the number of these deputies. Later, he will come together with the independent deputies who have been in contact with him as well as with certain RPP [Republican People's Party] deputies. According to his close circles Mumcu will soon reach the number of deputies required for forming a group in the TGNA.

    And later he will start making efforts for establishing a party.

    Some in Mumcu's close circles claim that Mumcu aims "to revive the Turgut Ozal spirit" and to take control of MP [Motherland Party], which cannot even find a party leader. Nevertheless there are others who oppose this view, noting that the party in question has been worn out due to corruption allegations.

    Most probably a new party will be established. The Motherland Party will abolish itself and join this party. Those who have lost hope in the RPP will also be able to join this party without being distressed. This is the current atmosphere".

    /SK


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