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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Press and Other Media, 05-05-13

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.89/05 13.05.05

[A] NEWS ITEMS

  • [01] Commissioner Olli Rehn says that the regulations proposed by the EU Commission is the best short term alternative which will pave the way for an overall solution in Cyprus.
  • [02] Serdar Denktas argues that the Turkish occupation troops in Cyprus must be increased.
  • [03] Soyer stated that while the political struggle continues a legal struggle will start as well regarding the Cyprus problem.
  • [04] Izcan: Serdars statement does not reflect the reality.
  • [05] The usurpers of the Greek Cypriot properties in occupied Cyprus are moving to put the British justice under their control.
  • [06] About Eupro and its Chairman.

  • [A] NEWS ITEMS

    [01] Commissioner Olli Rehn says that the regulations proposed by the EU Commission is the best short term alternative which will pave the way for an overall solution in Cyprus

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (13.05.05) reports that the EU Commissioner responsible for the Enlargement, Olli Rehn has said that the regulations for direct trade with the occupied areas of Cyprus and financial aid to the Turkish Cypriots, which were proposed by the EU Commission, is the best short term alternative which will pave the way for an overall solution in Cyprus.

    Mr Rehn, who is visiting Cyprus with the Foreign Minister of Luxemburg, Mr Nicolas Schmit, current EU President, said that the present situation in Cyprus and the division of the island, does not comply with the criteria of the EU. He pointed out that they came to Cyprus in order to investigate whether or not there is ground for resumption of the talks and possibility for achieving a compromise on the issue of the two regulations proposed by the Commission regarding the lifting of the so-called isolation of the Turkish Cypriots, which is more urgent issue.

    Asked whether or not there is a possibility for the resumption of the talks towards reaching a solution to the Cyprus problem, Mr Rehn noted that this question should be addressed to President Papadopoulos and the Turkish Cypriot leader Mehmet Ali Talat. Mr Rehn described as very encouraging the meeting between Prime Minster Erdogan and the UN Secretary General, Kofi Anan in Moscow.

    Furthermore, Turkish Cypriot daily AFRIKA newspaper (13.05.05) reports that Mr Rehn and Mr Schimt said that no step is made until now towards a solution in Cyprus, but they noted that they were optimistic. Mr Rehn said that the status quo cannot continue any more and underlined that the issue of the properties must urgently be solved.

    Turkish Cypriot daily HALKIN SESI newspaper (13.05.05) writes that Mr Rehn said that the issues concerning the properties increase the tension and added that he did not support appealing to courts for a matter that is political.

    [02] Serdar Denktas argues that the Turkish occupation troops in Cyprus must be increased

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (13.05.05) reports that Serdar Denktas, so-called deputy prime minister and minister of foreign affairs of the occupation regime, has argued that the number of the Turkish occupation troops in Cyprus must be increased.

    In statements yesterday during a meeting with the commander of the Turkish occupation forces in Cyprus, lieutenant general Hasan Memisoglu, Mr Denktas reiterated that Turkey could not withdraw troops from the island until a lasting solution is found and added: We are against the withdrawal of even a squad of soldiers until the lasting and overall solution. The army is not a threat in Cyprus. It is the guarantee for the stability. The existence (of the Turkish) army is the last card in our hand. If you look at the latest developments we should increase the number of the army, not decrease it.

    Mr Denktas said that they will continue to cooperate with the army officials.

    Meanwhile, KIBRIS reports that during another meeting he had yesterday Mr Denktas answered a question about the Turkish Foreign Minister, Abdullah Guls statements against the Turkish Cypriots acquiring a passport of the Republic of Cyprus. Mr Denktas said that he did not think that Mr Gul made such a statement and that the press might have misinterpreted what he said.

    Mr Denktas argued that Mr Gul is among those who know best that the Turkish Cypriots with the wish of Turkey established a Republic in 1960 where they have partnership rights and that with the national and moral stance of the Turkish Cypriots the existence of Turkism on the island was ensured.

    [03] Soyer stated that while the political struggle continues a legal struggle will start as well regarding the Cyprus problem

    Turkish Cypriot daily VATAN newspaper (13.05.05) reports that the so-called prime minister of the occupation regime, Mr Ferdi Sabit Soyer met yesterday with the commanders of the Turkish occupation troops in Cyprus, who held various meeting with Turkish Cypriot politicians.

    Speaking during the meeting Mr Soyer stated that while the political struggle is going on in Cyprus, a legal struggle will start as well. Accusing the President of the Republic of Cyprus, Mr Tassos Papadopoulos, of undertaking initiatives endangering a settlement based on bi-zonality and alleging that President Papadopoulos tries to change the platform of the Cyprus Problem, Mr Soyer stated that the Turkish Cypriots will not be tricked into this game. We will not be deceived by Papadopoulos, he stated.

    Mr Soyer also stated that the cooperation of the pseudostate with Turkey and the authorities of the occupation troops will be continued at every level.

    Speaking during the meting Lieutenant General Hasan Memisoglu stated that the Turkish occupation troops in Cyprus will do everything they can to maintain the safety and happiness of the Turkish Cypriots.

    [04] Izcan: Serdars statement does not reflect the reality

    Local Turkish Cypriot daily AFRIKA newspaper (13.05.05) reports that the so-called foreign ministry of the occupation regime made a written statement as regards the invoices sent by the Makarios III Hospital regarding expenses incurred by Turkish Cypriot patients treated in the hospital between 2003- 2005.

    The paper reports that the so-called ministry, which received the invoices through the UN Peace- Keeping Force to distribute to the addressees, has decided to return them, fifteen in total, to the sender, because on the invoices it was written occupied Lapithos, occupied Kyrenia etc and no full address or breakdown of the expenses incurred were mentioned.

    AFRIKA further reports that the so-called ministrys announcement also mentioned that the UN Peace Force was warned so that in future it will not act as a go-between for this kind of Greek Cypriot demands.

    Moreover, the paper reports that the General Secretary of the United Cyprus Party (UCP), Mr Izzet Izcan, has declared that the statement by Serdar Denktas, the so-called foreign minister of the occupation regime, regarding the free medical services provided to the Turkish Cypriots in the government controlled area of Cyprus, does not reflect the truth.

    Izcan said that he had discussed this issue with Mr Andreas Gavrieledes, the Republics Minster of Health, and that the issue concerns only two persons who had received medical treatment, one in Limassol and the other in Larnaca, and in both cases they were unable to produce Cyprus Republics identity cards, and as a result two invoices were issued.

    Izcan said: Recently certain circles were mobilized in order to destroy the trust built between the two communities, to torpedo the peace process and to prove that the two communities cannot live together.

    [05] The usurpers of the Greek Cypriot properties in occupied Cyprus are moving to put the British justice under their control

    Under the title Eupro moves to block arrest warrants in UK in its front page and Government Minister Addresses Eupro meeting in the inside pages, Turkish Cypriot Cyprus Times newspaper (13/05/05) publishes two reports which show that the usurpation of the properties of the Greek Cypriots, who were forced to abandon them in 1974 to escape from the Turkish army, is made on a premeditated and organized manner.

    On the Eupro meeting, held in occupied Kyrenia on 8 May, before the committee of the owners of Greek Cypriot properties started their lobby actions in London, Cyprus Times newspaper writes the following:

    Over 350 members of Eupro, the European Property Association of Northern Cyprus, attended a meeting at the Colony Hotel on Wednesday evening 11 May, to hear Minister for the Economy & Tourism Dervis Deniz, outline the governments position on legal moves taken by Greek Cypriots against property owners and agents in the north.

    Following presentation by Eupro Chairman Shelley White and UK Director Donald Crawford, the Minister addressed the meeting followed by questions from the floor, which prompted a lively and informative debate about actions being taken by the Greek Cypriot side, fears and concerns of the membership, and the governments determination to effectively counter threats and actions against TRNC residents.

    I know that I speak for the president as well as myself when I say how much we appreciate the support we have had over these past years, and which we continue to have now, from the foreign community who share both our lives and our hopes for the future, said Mr Deniz.

    Addressing Eupro the so-called Minister, Mr Deniz said: I salute EUPRO and all of you here tonight. Eupro is dedicated to the same causes and principles as the government - a just and honourable settlement of a complex and difficult problem. It believes in particular, that the solution of the property issue can only be found through the political process, not through provocative and ultimately meaningless or pointless legal action against foreigners and Turkish Cypriots.

    They affect all of us, not just the individuals directly caught up in them. The danger is that unless they are rebutted, they will increase the divisions between the two communities at the very time when we seek to end them. The government in the south says it cannot prevent its citizens bringing these actions. It denies any part in them, yet it has not denounced claims of this kind, so we must expect more of them.

    The minister went on to explain what should be done to respond to Greek Cypriot actions. Firstly we must make it clear to the European Union that these claims are a threat not only to our economic well-being but also to the political process. We will emphasise that the risk is that Turkish Cypriots will be driven to the courts to seek the same remedies in respect of their lands in the south. If that were to happen then our task of achieving a political solution would be even more difficult. Mr Deniz suggested that a legal battle is in no ones interest.

    At the same time, we cannot let these challenges pass, the minister continued.

    Affected and threatened individuals have right to defend themselves as best they can. Eupro has demonstrated that it will vigorously defend the interests of its members and to that end it has assembled a formidable and impressive legal team in London. We welcome that, because this government strongly believes in partnership with civil society. Foreign residents and property owners in the north are part of that civil society and those who choose to come here implicitly make a commitment to our cause and our future together.

    And Mr Deniz concluded:

    There will of course be many developments in the months ahead, so we want you to continue to support and understand what we will be doing. We intend to find ways to can improve communications between government and the foreign community; and to ensure we work as closely as possible in all areas of common concern, we have asked Eupro to discuss with us what practical steps can be taken to make cooperation effective. The Minister then announced the formation of Presidential committee of professional advisors including members of Eupro so as to ensure that a collective and effective approach to Greek Cypriot moves are made known to the international community. The minister finished by saying: Let me say again how very glad I am to have had this opportunity to talk to you tonight, to assure you that we stand together and to promise you this: We will not let you down. Together we will prevail.

    At the end of the meeting Minister Deniz was whisked away to attend a Prime Ministerial meeting, where the issue was discussed, but left Eupro Director and members with a reassuring feeling of government support for TRNC property owners who may find themselves in a sport of bother with former Greek Cypriot landowners.

    On Eupro contacts in London the paper writes:

    Eupro lawyers in London have asked the UK authorities for written confirmation that they will not execute any European arrest warrants issued by the Greek Cypriots pursuing property owners in the North. They argue that no English judge would order the extradition of an individual to Cyprus, and therefore no one should be arrested.

    Under British law the Extradition Act 2003, spells out how the EU law governing cross-border arrest warrants is to be enforced in the UK, and the process which must be followed before anyone can be arrested or extradited to another EU member state.

    All European arrest warrants have to be sent in the first instance to the National Criminal Intelligence Service (NCIS) in London for certification that they comply with the terms of the UKs Extradition Act 2003. The police can only arrest someone if the NCIS has confirmed to them that it believes the warrant to be lawful, in which case the person arrested must be taken to Bow Street Magistrates Court the designated court for extradition cases for a ruling by a district judge.

    But Eupro wants to ensure that no case gets that far. It is little consolation to someone arrested, kept in police custody and then taken to court to be then told by a judge that they are free to go. We want the NCIS to reject them as soon as they drop into their in-tray. That is why we are seeking to block them now.

    No arrest of anyone can be made without direct authorization from the NICS, which must first satisfy itself that the warrant received complies with UK law. Apart from a number of crimes specifically listed in the EU regulation - such as terrorism, murder, drug trafficking - an arrest warrant can only be certified for execution by the NCIS if the offence alleged is also a crime in the UK.

    Illegal use or occupation or trespass in a former Greek Cypriot property in the North is not a crime under British law. Moreover, Eupro lawyers argue that since the North is not a member of the EU, it is therefore outside the scope of the Extradition Act.

    Eupros lawyers have told the NCIS that warrants from the Greek Cypriots should be neither certified nor executed. They say that, The change made by the Republic of Cyprus to its laws to come within the EAW framework and its use of that framework is blatantly political.

    They also warn the NCIS that the arrest and detention by the police of any individual affected by a Greek Cypriot warrant would be a breach of their rights under the European Convention of Human Rights, and that they are already in the process of preparing a formal complaint to the ECHR about the use of these warrants under Greek Cyprus law.

    Each country in the EU will apply its own laws to the arrest warrants, says a Eupro spokesman, but it is difficult to see how any country will accept these Greek Cypriot warrants except Greece. At the same time, we want it made absolutely clear from the outset that no one will face the threat of arrest anywhere else and Britain is a good place to begin. And we want that in writing.

    [06] About Eupro and its Chairman

    In its 12-18/03/05 edition Turkish Cypriot weekly Cyprus Today newspaper published the following:

    One of the things that we are insistent upon is that the Greek Cypriots stop treating this country, the people and the government here as if they dont exist.

    Shelley White, a US attorney from Houston who moved to Karaman (occupied Karmi) in 2002, is outlining the ethos behind the new European Property Association of Northern Cyprus (Eupro), which has already attracted more than 300 members less than a fortnight after its launch.

    Eupro, a limited company incorporated in England and with offices both in London and North Cyprus, was set up to represent the interests of foreign property owners in the `TRNC´. It aims to counter Greek Cypriot propaganda on the property issue in the North.

    Mrs White explains: It is very infuriating to pick up a Greek Cypriot newspaper and read `pseudo government´ and `pseudo minister´ and I guess we are all `pseudo voters´. It is not as if this state exists on a cloud. It is a reality and it is, for lack of a better term, a de facto government. The people obey the government here, the government is functioning, it is in control of the country, and it has a perfectly legitimate right to regulate its own affairs. That includes governing title to its own property. The English court has been very well aware of that since 1978 because there is case law in England going back to 1978 saying that the Greek Cypriots cannot bring a suit to England over these properties. Now that they (Greek Cypriots) have joined the European Union they are trying to make a back door around that decision. They are saying `wait a minute, we can´t get a British court to do anything about it but what we will do is to get a judgement in the South and then we will try to get the English court to recognize the judgement under the EU Protocol of Recognition of Judgement´.

    This is propaganda. And what confirms to me that it is a political issue a true propaganda approach and not a real situation is that if they bothered to read the EU Protocol of Recognition of Judgement they would know that it states very clearly that it is not applicable to real property because only the locality can deal with real property. A French court cannot deal with titles to British property. And it is the same here. The protocol is clear on that. It also says that if you are talking about public policy matters, public policy issues, and political propaganda is not something which is right for recognition by the judiciary in another country of the EU. And that is what we want to recognise in this situation.

    They just cannot act with disregard to the law. They (the laws) dont just exist on the side of the Greek Cypriots.

    The association says it is retaining counsel in the UK to advise it on a number of legal issues relating to the overall property issues in the North, the recent high-profile campaign conducted against foreign property owners in the `TRNC´ and the Orams case in particular. We are engaging counsel in the UK to see what we can do about the threat that Mr Candounas has made about taking the Orams decision to England and having it recognised there, said Mrs White.

    We are also in a bit of a quandary about what he can do with a judgement that, I assume, will come on May 11 in favour of the former Greek Cypriot owner of the Orams property. They have never served David Orams, only Mrs Linda Orams, so how do you execute the judgement to tear down a property when it only deals with 50 per cent of it? What do you do? Tear down the front two rooms and leave the back? It doesnt even work. It is impractical, which just enforces the fact that the whole case is a political propaganda done deliberately to try to harm the economy in the North.

    It all sounds very simple and logical when Mrs White talks about it, so why did no-one tackle these issues before?

    I think the government here recognized that it is political propaganda but, until somebody does something, all the government can do is to talk about it. And they really dont have a voice because the media, in England particularly, are very sympathetic to the Greek Cypriot side. They dont even call a Turkish Cypriot journalist and ask about their side. You dont see this side offered that at all, and I think that somebody needed to organise the foreign property owners here so that we could stand up and say `You are going to have to take us on as a group´.

    It is too easy to pick us off one at a time, but if we all get together we are much more powerful. One of the realities here is that people tend to be retired, they came for a quite life, and they came here because the rustic beauty of the North appealed to them.

    Getting involved and rocking the boat is not what they want. You have to feel really threatened before you are willing to do that.

    And fortunately or unfortunately, Mr Candounas has made enough for us. People are now saying `Poor Linda Orams. It might be me next time. I dont want to wait until they come knocking on my door. I want to do something about it now´.

    So it is not that the things havent been done properly in the past. I would rather say that the focus hasnt been there and now it is. And we have Mr Candounas to thank for this.

    (N.B: Published again because media representatives ask about Eupro and its leadership)


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