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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Press and Other Media, 05-06-06

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.105/05 04-05-06.06.05

[A] NEWS ITEMS

  • [01] Talat rules out withdrawal of occupation troops before solution.
  • [02] Protocol signed between the Turkish Republic and the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus.
  • [03] The Spokesman of President Sezer on the latest development over the Cyprus problem.
  • [04] Erdogan to fly to Washington with the helicopters procurement in his suitcase.
  • [05] The Turkish Foreign Minister on the positions of the Greek Cypriot side presented to the UN.
  • [06] Erdogan construes the flight of American congressmen to occupied Cyprus as tantamount to recognition of Ankara´s puppet regime.
  • [07] Replies to questions on Cyprus by the Turkish Prime Minister during an interview with YENI SAFAK.
  • [08] Russian tourist are coming; Direct flights on the way.
  • [09] Agreement between the occupied municipalities and Cicilys Municipal Union.
  • [10] The pseudostate intends to take measures against Turkish Cypriots who participate in international sporting events.
  • [11] Huseyin Kayim, deputy of the National Unity Party joined the Democratic Party.
  • [B] COMMENTARIES, EDITORIALS AND ANALYSIS

  • [12] Columnist in OZGUR POLITIKA calls on the international community to save the Kurds from Turkish atrocities.

  • [A] NEWS ITEMS

    [01] Talat rules out withdrawal of occupation troops before solution

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (03.06.05) reported from occupied Lefkosia that Mr Mehmet Ali Talat, President of the occupation regime, speaking on Turkish private TV channel Kanal D on Thursday night, said that Prime Minister Erdogan would meet UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan during his official visit to the United States.

    ''UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan should be encouraged by Turkish Prime Minister Erdogan to start a new initiative for Cyprus. We, as the Turkish Cypriot side, are ready for that, but this doesn't mean that we will give up our rights and our determination for a settlement which will be based on the political equality of Turkish Cypriots,'' said Talat.

    Referring to their meetings in Ankara yesterday (Thursday), Talat said that they believed it was necessary to have a meeting prior to Prime Minister Erdogan's visit to the United States, and they wanted to harmonize the policies and make a fine tuning if necessary. Talat said that they also focused on the things which Erdogan would say about Cyprus during his visit to the United States.

    Talat said that he expected Erdogan's visit to bring out multi-dimensional benefits, listing them as 'U.S. President Bush's increasing his support to Turkish Cypriots, start of direct flights to the occupied areas of Cyprus, UN's increasing its pressure on the Greek Cypriot side and Erdogan's voicing the fact that Turkish Cypriots are ready for a settlement on the island.

    Talat stressed that the United States could play a leading role in lifting of the so-called blockade on the occupied areas of Cyprus adding that recently the stance of the United States on the Cyprus issue was more determined.

    On the Turkish troops occupying Cyprus since 1974, Mr Talat said: Withdrawal of Turkish soldiers from the island couldn't be a precondition for the start of Cyprus talks. Their withdrawal depends on solution. If there is a settlement, the Turkish soldiers will anyhow withdraw. I don't know what will happen if Turkish army withdraws today. Making the withdrawal of soldiers and transfer of properties a precondition (for talks) means that no settlement is wanted.''

    Commenting on the statement by his so-called Prime Minister Ferdi Sabit Soyer, who said that Greek Cypriot leader Tassos Papadopoulos had signed The Akritas Plan and that he should be convicted for that, Talat said that The Akritas Plan was not a plan of annihilation of Turkish Cypriots, but that of Greek Cypriots' attempt to dominate the whole island.

    [02] Protocol signed between the Turkish Republic and the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (04.06.05) reported from occupied Lefkosia that the State Minister and Deputy Prime Minister of the Turkish Republic, Mr Abdulllatif Sener, met Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) Prime Minister Ferdi Sabit Soyer in occupied Lefkosia on Saturday.

    Stating that he was paying a visit to TRNC to sign the additional protocol, Sener indicated that they would discuss how economic and financial relations would be further improved during his talks.

    On his part, TRNC Prime Minister Soyer said that they aimed to improve investment climate in TRNC and upgrade living conditions of Turkish Cypriots.

    The Turkish Republic and Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus signed on Saturday the economic and financial cooperation additional protocol. TRNC Prime Minister Ferdi Sabit Soyer, Turkish State Minister and Deputy Prime Minister Abdullatif Sener and the so-called Economy Minister Dervis Kemal Deniz signed the protocol.

    The protocol foresees that 100 million USD would be added to 450 million USD financial support to TRNC which was included in the economic and financial protocol signed between the two countries in 2003. It also noted that the protocol will be extended till 2006.

    Delivering a speech in the signing ceremony, TRNC Prime Minister Soyer stated that the TRNC would continue its cooperation with the Turkish government.

    Soyer stressed that Turkey was the most important political partner and supporter of the TRNC in the solution process of Cyprus issue.

    Sener noted that they discussed TRNC economy with Soyer and other officials, stating: "Cyprus is a national cause for the Turkish Republic. We hope that economic performance of `Turkish Republic in Northern Cyprus´ would further improve."

    The protocol which is named as "Reconstruction and Economic Development Program" was signed in addition to "Economic and Financial Cooperation Protocol" signed in April, 2003.

    The protocol says: "`The Economic and Financial Arrangements Program Adjusted to the Vision of the New Period has started to solve problems stemming from isolations and lack of public management, to increase employment, and to ensure development. It was put into effect in 2004. However, the Program could not be implemented to the required level because envisioned laws could not be adopted due to the referendum, elections and Parliament arithmetic."

    "On the other hand, the Greek Cypriot side joined the EU although a lasting solution could not be found to the Cyprus question. This situation necessitates new arrangements to relations of Turkey and `TRNC´ with the EU. A reconstruction is necessary by taking into consideration the reality that economy of `TRNC´ will compete with southern economy in case of a possible solution in the future. Thus, `TRNC´ economy should be ready to this competition milieu and also economic relations between Turkey and `TRNC´ should be taken up according to new conditions," noted the protocol.

    "In spite of all problems, flow of people, property and service between `TRNC´ and southern Cyprus was liberalized on a limited scale in the last two years. This liberalization brought a momentum to economic development," said the protocol.

    The protocol adds: "Thus, it is important to eliminate public deficiencies as well as obstacles before production and export, to support production sectors which have high competition power, to present a wide and qualified service in areas of tourism, higher education and banking, and to provide a sustainable economic growth."

    [03] The Spokesman of President Sezer on the latest development over the Cyprus problem

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (03.06.05) reported from Ankara that Mr Sermet Atacanli, chief advisor to Turkish President Ahmet Necdet Sezer for foreign affairs, on Friday held a press briefing at the Cankaya Presidential Office.

    Answering a question on the latest developments in Cyprus, Atacanli stated that there was a period of stagnation in Cyprus currently.

    Recalling that there was no progress on the solution of Cyprus issue Atacanli said: "After Greek Cypriots gained the status of full membership (of the European Union), they assumed a more uncompromising attitude on the Cyprus issue since there is no reason left for them to extend efforts for a solution. Steps that can be taken on this issue should be assessed. Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs carry out consultations on this issue with relevant countries from time to time

    The important thing now is that Turkish Cypriots voted yes to the Annan plan while Greek Cypriots rejected it. TRNC and Turkey have fulfilled what is necessary regarding the Cyprus issue."

    [04] Erdogan to fly to Washington with the helicopters procurement in his suitcase

    Turkish Daily The New Anatolian (04.06.05) reports that a new era in Turkish-US relations may dawn with the procurement of an estimated $750 mln worth of helicopters

    During Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan's visit to America next week, important developments are expected over Turkish tenders for the procurement of both general purpose and search and rescue helicopters. The provision of these important tenders, which will reach an estimated $750 million, are considered by many to provide new opportunities in Turkish-U.S. relations.

    The tenders currently open under various departments of the Turkish Armed Forces (TAF) will remain up for grabs for a while. The list of helicopters to be acquired by the various departments of the TAF is as follows:

    Land Forces Command: 20 general purpose helicopters.

    Air Forces Command: six search and rescue helicopters.

    Naval Forces Command: six general purpose helicopters, and eight naval operations helicopters.

    Security General Directorate: eight search and rescue helicopters, and a traffic monitoring helicopter.

    A total of 48 helicopters, including AS532 Cougars, EC725s and NH90s, and the Sikorsky company's S70-A Black Hawk helicopter are among the those being considered by the TSK for procurement.

    Each helicopter has a unit price of $14 million, and approximately $750 million will be spent in total.

    [05] The Turkish Foreign Minister on the positions of the Greek Cypriot side presented to the UN

    Istanbul NTV television (03.06.05) broadcast that the Turkish Foreign Minister Mr Abdullah Gul made statements at the airport before his departure to Vienna, as follows:

    The purpose of my visit is to both talk at the forum on the EU and to review our relations with Austria and assess certain regional developments.

    As you know, at the beginning of 2006 Austria will take over the EU term presidency from Britain. Besides, in terms of our bilateral ties, Austria is a country with which we have been cooperating in very broad spheres.

    We will review all these. If you recall that last year 450,000 Austrian tourists visited Turkey, you will see how intensive our relations are. You will understand the importance of this country for Turkey if you also remember that our trade volume has surpassed $1 billion and that there are 200,000 Turkish citizens in Austria, an important part of whom have also obtained Austrian citizenship.

    As such, I believe that my visit will pass off successfully, further our bilateral relations, and help us to better understand each other.

    Question: The TRNC delegation under President Talat met Prime Minister Erdogan. Erdogan will meet Kofi Annan during his visit to the United States. What sort of messages will be conveyed to Kofi Annan?

    Answer: You should consider this visit [on the part of Turkish Cypriot leaders] as normal. This is their first visit to Turkey after Mehmet Ali Talat's election as president and after the assumption of posts by the prime minister and deputy prime minister. As such, during this visit we will review everything and the latest situation on the island. As you know, the UN representative was on the island and held talks with the Greek and Turkish sides. We once more assessed those contacts.

    As you already said, these will definitely be the issues to be discussed with Kofi Annan during our American visit. Ahead of that meeting, we once more held a mutual and in-depth assessment.

    Question: Were the Greek Cypriot proposals too on the agenda of your meeting? What is Turkey's position on these proposals?

    Answer: The Greek Cypriots have not submitted any written proposal. What the Greek Cypriots are saying is a repeat, in a different form, of what they have been saying before the referendum. As such, there is no question of them having submitted any written proposals or any clear and explicit proposal to discuss specific issues. We have learned that they have various ideas that remind us of their extensive, pages-long, counter views concerning almost the entire [Annan] plan before the referendum. But, there is no question of any written text or clear views submitted to us and to the Turkish Cypriot leaders, who are their real counterparts.

    Quesiton: The Greek Cypriot proposals are as being far removed from the Annan plan, especially as regards the ending of Turkey's guarantorship. Could these be subjected to debate?

    Answer: As I said, there is no question of any written text from the Greek Cypriot side or of any objections to specific provisions. Theirs are very disparate views comprising extremely broad issues, as if they form a completely different plan. They had voiced these views before the referendum too. We see that they are maintaining the same position. That is why I would not like to comment on a few specific issues only.

    [06] Erdogan construes the flight of American congressmen to occupied Cyprus as tantamount to recognition of Ankara´s puppet regime

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (04.06.05) reported from Ankara that the Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Friday referred to Cyprus as follows during a meeting:

    "The situation in Turkey would be like the situation between Lebanon and Syria if we had continued the existing policies about Cyprus for years. In the end there would be an insistence on us to 'leave Cyprus'. We would resist this for sometime, and in the end we would have to leave.

    Turkey has not escaped from the table; our interlocutors escaped from the table. Our brothers in the `Turkish Republic in Northern Cyprus´ voted "yes" to the UN plan, and the southern side voted "no". Isolation continues partly at the moment but nobody can put a different political pressure on `TRNC´. U.S. Congressmen visited the `TRNC´ and this means 'I recognize you'. This process will continue from now on. We have and will overcome the difficulties."

    Erdogan emphasized that Turkey was at a "good" but not "adequate" level in foreign policy.

    [07] Replies to questions on Cyprus by the Turkish Prime Minister during an interview with YENI SAFAK

    Istanbul YENI SAFAK newspaper (04.06.05) and (05.06.05) published an interview with Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

    Following are Mr Erdogan´s replies to questions on Cyprus and current domestic issues:

    Question: In the Turkish Penal Code there is a provision about basic national interests. For example national interests may include issues such as the withdrawal of troops from Cyprus and the Armenian genocide.

    Answer: The law has its own language. I am not a lawyer. I do not know what is said in the reasoning for basic national interests but I do not agree with that example. No judge could evaluate the matter that way. On the Armenian genocide issue I do not think that it could be discussed as something belonging to the state. I ask you then: Why did the organizers of this symposium [Bosphorus University conference on Armenians in the Ottoman Empire] change their mind?

    Question: When we go Anatolia [we see] uneasiness among people from your constituency. They talk about being government but staying impotent.

    Answer: No institution in Turkey is unconditionally powerful on its own. This includes politics. Parliament says that sovereignty belongs unconditionally to the people. If you notice some circles have recently introduced very different descriptions with regard to the interpretation of even this principle. There are some who have said that there are two states in Turkey. However we believe that we have made progress in these areas also. If we bury our sighs inside us there are reasons for it. We do not want any tensions. The price of tension has been very high. We want to save the forest from burning. That is why when a few trees burn we are prepared to sacrifice them. The uneasiness in Anatolia--this includes the headscarf issue, the latest version of [Article] 263 [of the TCK]. The main opposition leader has referred to illegal Koranic education. It is impossible for Koranic education to be illegal. In any event the text of the law does not contain anything like that, and [such statements are] contrary to the spirit of the law. [Such statements] insult and disrespect this country's people 98 percent of whom are Muslims.

    Question: Your visit to the United States begins early next week. What is on your agenda? Most importantly what do you think about comments that relations between the two countries are dominated by a climate of tension?

    Answer: There has been some speculation about the Turkish-American relations in the last one year. This issue goes back to the 1 March [2003] authorization bill. There has been continual generation of speculation. In truth there was never any tension at the highest levels. After 1 March we had opportunities to discuss these issues with them very explicitly in both phone conversations and international meetings. The most important of these was the NATO summit. President Bush said very openly: "What do you want me to do? If you want me to come to Turkey, I will come. If there is something else you want me to do I can do that too."

    The American media keep writing but I do not pay much attention to those. There was never anything negative between us. Unfortunately the American media and naturally our media have used such things to come up with very different interpretations.

    Most recently we did what we could on the Incirlik affair. Moreover there are many export products such as logistics, water, and medication that go there [presumably Iraq] from Turkey. However there are circles that disregard these and want to spoil the Turkish-American relations and to achieve gains from that. We must be sensitive on this issue. We do not want our strategic partnership to be marred. There may have been occasional adversities but these can and are overcome by negotiations. Indeed we have overcome many of them. However we believe that our stance is correct. If there is anything we consider wrong we say it. We convey it to Mr Bush where appropriate. The United States provided us with serious support on the EU and Cyprus issues. Its decision to send its congressmen to north Cyprus and especially to have them land at Ercan (occupied Tymbou) Airport despite the objections of south Cyprus are positive postures. We cannot disregard these.

    Question: What issues will you discuss with the US President?

    Answer: We will discuss many issues. Some things may not be proceeding as fast as we want. We will ask him to speed these up. Turkey and the United States are two countries that need each other. We will proceed with these in solidarity. The sensitivities of the Middle East--there are also other issues. We cannot disregard these. Let me point out a truth here. I went to Afghanistan. I went to the capital, Kabul. After seeing other countries in the world, when one sees Afghanistan one is ashamed of humanity. Children go to school in tents. There is hunger. Our government's posture changed after seeing that. We want to contribute to the reconstruction of the infrastructure there. We are saying: Let us make investments, let us take the necessary steps, let us build hospitals and public housing. We want to have a PRT [Provincial Reconstruction Team] in an appropriate location in that country.

    Question: What are the No. 1 and No. 2 items on the agenda?

    Answer: A review of US-Turkish relations is among our priorities. We will discuss the TRNC. We will discuss Iraq and the Middle East. There are also issues that we will discuss privately but of course those will remain private.

    Question: Do you not have any concerns about the period after 3 October?

    Answer: We have gone beyond that process. We see 3 October as the date on which these talks will begin. There is nothing that Turkey can give after this point. Turkey has done what it was supposed to do. As for the issue of implementation, this requires time. This is not something that can happen overnight. This is a matter of changing mentality. There are certain habits. For example the problem of opening courses to teach mother tongues has been overcome. Although there was much interest initially now these courses have begun asking us for money. They tell us that they cannot "keep the courses open" and that they cannot "find customers."

    Question: You had a meeting with President Mehmet Ali Talat on Cyprus. You will also have talks with Kofi Annan on this issue. What is happening over Cyprus?

    Answer: We are determined to maintain the position we have had thus far over Cyprus. First of all the TRNC did what it was supposed to do regarding the Annan plan. Turkey also did what was incumbent on it as a guarantor power. However our counterparts did not do what was incumbent on them. Neither the other guarantor power nor the south Cyprus administration did it. They will give the appearance of running from the negotiating table as long as they fail to do what is incumbent on them. Indeed Annan says this in the report he drafted. Now this is what we will demand from Annan in the United States. We will request that this report be discussed and brought to a conclusion at the UN Security Council. They keep stalling. The Greek Cypriot administration that said "no" to the Annan plan is rewarded, while those who said "yes" are penalized. We will tell Annan that we want the isolation to be lifted. We will demand the establishment of economic, trade, cultural, and athletic relations with the Turkish Cypriot side. The prime ministers and presidents of Pakistan and Kazakhstan told me that they support me on Cyprus. We will also make some initiatives in the Organization of Islamic Conference.

    Question: [Cyprus President Tassos] Papadopoulos insists on the withdrawal of troops from the island.

    Answer: Obviously that is not possible.

    [08] Russian tourist are coming; Direct flights on the way

    Under the above title Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (06.06.05) reports that the Russian group of tourist agents who have been visiting the occupied areas of Cyprus upon an invitation by the Turkish Cypriot Western Travel and Tourism agency, have said that the first Russian tourist group will be visiting the island within fifteen days.

    In statements to KIBRIS, Mrs Natalia Kurpyakova, director of the Russian Aquarius Tour noted that there might be some problems regarding the cost of the airplane ticket and the time needed to travel to the occupied areas of Cyprus from Moscow, but she added that these issues could be solved by having contacts with a private aviation company that will be directly flying from Moscow to the illegal Tymbou airport.

    Asked whether or not they will be demanding from the Russian state or a private company to launch direct flights to the occupied areas of Cyprus, Mrs Kurpyakova said: Not to the state, but we shall submit a suggestion on the issue to the biggest aviation company of our country. It will be better for us as well this way. In the worst situation they could come with an airplane which will be landing in Istanbul or Antalya, as the airplanes that come from Britain.

    [09] Agreement between the occupied municipalities and Cicilys Municipal Union

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (06.06.05) reports that a delegation of the so-called Turkish Cypriot Municipal Union has visited Italy upon invitation by Cicilys Municipal Union.

    The Turkish Cypriot delegation consisted of the mayors of Pergamos, Huseyin Beyar, Morphou, Mahmut Ozcinar and Rizokarpaso, Arif Ozbayrak who were accompanied by the former mayor of the occupied part of Nicosia, Semi Bora.

    The Turkish Cypriot delegation and the chairman of Cicilys Municipal Union, mayor of Cicily Giambattista Bufareci signed an agreement for cooperation on the issues of development and the services provided by the local authorities.

    They also agreed that representatives of the municipalities of Cicily should have meetings with their Turkish Cypriot counterparts twice a year.

    [10] The pseudostate intends to take measures against Turkish Cypriots who participate in international sporting events

    Turkish Cypriot daily YENIDUZEN newspaper (06.06.05) reports that the Turkish Cypriot athlete Zafer Sukusu competed and won a medal with the Cypriot national team in the Games of the Small States of Europe (GSSE), which took place in Andorra. Zafer Sukusu won a bronze metal in the 800-metre race.

    The Chairman of TRNC Athletic Federation, Alkan Degirmencioglu said that there are athletes who are going into training with sport clubs in the free area of Cyprus, but it is the first time that a TRNC athlete competed wearing the Cyprus national teams uniform.

    Mr Degirmencioglu said: We see Turkey as our only way out. This is a first case, but we must take measures before the number of our athletes, who want to follow this road, is increased. I will meet with our Minister of Sports Ozkan Yorgancioglu to discuss this matter.

    [11] Huseyin Kayim, deputy of the National Unity Party joined the Democratic Party

    Turkish Cypriot daily HALKIN SESI newspaper (05.06.05) reports that Mr Huseyin Kayim, who was elected as so-called deputy with the National Unity Party (NUP) of Dervis Eroglu, decided to join the Democratic Party (DP) of Serdar Denktas.

    In addition, Mr Ozbey Pasaogullari, the so-called mukhtar, the head of the occupied Vasilia village, who was elected to this position with NUP, also jointed the DP.

    With this development, the distribution of seats in the so-called parliament is as follows:

    The Republican Turkish Party has 23 seats, the National Unity Party has now 18 seats, the Democratic Party has 7 seats and the Peace and Democracy Movement

    has 1 seat. The number of the deputies of the so-called coalition government between the RTP and DP has increased to 30 since the day it was established. In addition, there is a vacant seat in the pseudoparliament because Mr Mehmet Ali Talat left his seat as Lefkosia deputy and took the position of the prime minister of the occupation regime.


    [B] COMMENTARIES, EDITORIALS AND ANALYSIS

    [12] Columnist in OZGUR POLITIKA calls on the international community to save the Kurds from Turkish atrocities

    OZGUR POLITIKA newspaper (02.06.05) publishes the following column by Masallah Ozturk under the title: "The escalating war and the silent humanity":

    History repeats itself in Kurdistan. The Turkish State, which has waged a war against the Kurdish people once again, is escalating the fighting in all areas. It attacks all values, which are associated with being a Kurd, in a bid to destroy them.

    The policies it has been pursuing since the beginning of the year indicate that it has put a strategy, which is similar to the one it devised in 1993, into practice.

    We are moving towards an era, which is similar to the bloody and dark period witnessed in the 1990s and will be characterized by efforts designed to intimidate the Kurdish people by causing panic and fear, to sever their ties with the Kurdish nationalist movement, and to annihilate guerrillas. Its current approach is exactly similar to others we have witnessed in the past.

    The State has mobilized some murderous military units, including the special combat brigades deployed in Bolu and Kayseri, which have a bad record, in order to conduct large-scale military operations across Kurdistan.

    Oppression, torture, fear, anxiety, death, and suffering reign in Kurdistan. The cruelty displayed by the Turkish army over the past two months is horrifying:

    The Turkish army uses dogs to mutilate the bodies of dead guerrillas. The tradition of cutting off their ears, noses, and fingers still continues. The brains of dead guerillas are removed by using bayonets as witnessed after two guerrillas had been killed in Gabar. The Turkish army uses chemical weapons against Kurdish guerrillas in violation of the Geneva Convention on War Crimes. Turkish generals fuel racism and chauvinism by blaming the Kurdish people just like General Hursit Tolon has done recently. Counterinsurgency teams wearing guerrilla outfit raid villages and force people to leave their homes. The Turkish army, which carries out raids similar to the one conducted in Erzurum two days ago, continuously harasses Kurdish people.

    In addition to those military methods causing anxiety, the Turkish State causes the war to spread to civilian areas.

    It makes all kinds of efforts in a bid to obstruct a possible democratic solution. The government, the opposition parties, and the Turkish press cooperate to hinder efforts aimed at achieving peace and democracy in line with orders and instructions they receive from the military.

    Meanwhile, the Education Workers Union has been closed down because it was campaigning for the right to receive education in one's mother tongue.

    The Turkish State has further intensified the isolation of Mr. Ocalan in order to sever his ties with the Kurdish people and to thwart efforts aimed at reaching a settlement. In what was regarded as a flagrant violation of the principle of equality stated in its own constitution, it has amended the Code on Enforcement of Punishments to ensure that some of its provisions are applicable only to certain people.

    The State, which must retry Mr Ocalan in line with the ECHR's recent ruling, was bold enough to state that Ocalan would not be retried. Taking an even bolder approach, [Foreign Minister] Abdullah Gul has said: "Ocalan would be given the same sentence even if he is brought to trial a hundred times." His remark indicated that he had no respect for the laws and it was a direct challenge to the ECHR and thus to the EU.

    Meanwhile, none of the bans on Kurdish language, literature, culture, and art has been lifted.

    In short, the State has singled out the Kurds for punishment and resorts to all kinds of anti-democratic methods. It violates human rights one after another. It does not comply with provisions of the international treaties it has signed, which also safeguard the rights of Kurds. It has even breached its own laws to wage a dirty war against the Kurdish people, which disregards all rules and principles.

    Nobody, however, criticizes the Turkish State for carrying out those attacks designed to annihilate people, resorting to cruel actions, committing crimes against humanity, and violating international agreements.

    International Amnesty, the Red Cross, the EU, the United Nations, human rights activists, and the international community, which do not hesitate to express strong criticism when they find it convenient to do so, remain indifferent to those acts. None of them has accused Turkey of committing a serious crime against the Kurds. As if there is a secret agreement between them, they pretend that they are not aware of those facts. They behave as if international norms are not applicable to Kurds.

    Turkey, which will sit at the negotiating table with the EU in October, is flagrantly violating the Copenhagen criteria in front of the EU's very eyes and the EU remains totally silent. Occasional statements, which noted that ongoing clashes in Kurdistan should stop, produced no effect because they were not supported by sanctions.

    The Turkish State, which goes unpunished despite its crimes, continues to act madly in an uncontrolled manner.

    In that context, a new human tragedy looms on the horizon. If Amnesty International, the Red Cross, the United Nations, human rights activists and the entire humanity do not want to witness a new human tragedy, they must break their silence. They must oppose the dirty war being waged by the Turkish State in Kurdistan and side with the oppressed Kurdish nation, which is an obligation arising from their responsibilities towards humanity, human rights, and international norms.

    /SK


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