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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Press and Other Media, 05-09-05

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.168/05 03-04-05.09.05

[A] NEWS ITEMS

  • [01] The Turkish Prime Minister met his Italian counterpart.
  • [02] Press conference by Gul in Newport.
  • [03] Erdogan calls on the EU not to impose new conditions.
  • [04] Gul maintains tough position on Turkey´s obligations towards the EU.
  • [05] Erdogan seconds Gul´s tough attitude towards the EU.
  • [06] Statements by Erdogan after returning from Italy.
  • [07] How Mr Erdogan explains the Copenhagen criteria.
  • [08] Mehmet Ali Talat stated that the EU should not have accepted a divided country as member of the Union.
  • [09] ORTAM newspaper accuses Talat´s regime of abandoning the aim of solution and dealing with making money by selling out the occupied properties.
  • [10] The puppet regime´s rash to exploit Greek Cypriot properties has lead to the exhumation of 24 more missing since 1974.
  • [11] Three more Turkic countries are reportedly ready to launch flights to the occupied areas of Cyprus.
  • [12] Protocol for cooperation between the Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Industry and Aleppos Chamber of Trade signed.
  • [B] COMMENTARIES, EDITORIALS AND ANALYSIS

  • [13] The Turkish Cypriot press argues that the fire on the two Greek Cypriot cars was an act of arson.
  • [14] Columnist in VATAN assesses the Israeli- Pakistani meeting as changing the balances in the Middle East.

  • [A] NEWS ITEMS

    [01] The Turkish Prime Minister met his Italian counterpart

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (02.09.05) reported the following from Milano:

    ''It is now EU's turn to keep its promises as a requirement of the pacta sunt servanda principle,'' Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Friday.

    After completing his talks in Italian city of Milan, Erdogan proceeded to capital Rome.

    Erdogan and Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi attended a meeting held between Turkish and Italian delegations in Rome.

    During this meeting which focused on Turkey's EU membership bid, Erdogan reiterated Turkey's stance on EU, and said: ''We have fulfilled our responsibilities, and met all (required) criteria on the road to EU. It is now EU's turn to keep its promises as a requirement of the pacta sunt servanda principle.''

    On the other hand, Berlusconi said, ''Mr Prime Minister is right. We are supporting your determined position till the very end. His (Erdogan's) arguments will also be my arguments.''

    After attending the meeting between Turkish and Italian delegation, Erdogan and Berlusconi had a tete-a-tete meeting and working meal. During their meal, Erdogan and Berlusconi discussed ''Islamophobia'' and the Alliance of Civilizations projects, co-sponsored by Erdogan and Spanish PM Zapatero.

    Erdogan later attended the meeting of Italian cabinet.

    [02] Press conference by Gul in Newport

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (02.09.05) reported the following from Newport:

    ''I see no factor that can obstruct start of our (full membership) negotiations (with the EU) on October 3rd (as scheduled)'', Turkish Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul said on Friday.

    After attending the informal meeting of the EU foreign ministers in Newport, Britain, Gul held a press conference in which he said, ''Turkey fulfilled its duties, signing the additional protocol and passing six laws demanded from itself.''

    Gul noted that he saw that the EU preserved its strategic vision during today's talks, and said that talks would continue on several matters until negotiations were launched.

    ''EU will become stronger with Turkey, and become more efficient in world policy,'' indicated Gul.

    Answering a question on implementation of the Customs Union in a way that would cover all the member states, Gul said: ''We will implement the agreement we have signed. If there are problems stemming from this, there are legal platforms in which they can be discussed.''

    Gul said that Turkey's views were based on strong grounds, and stated that fulfillment of EU's commitments to end the isolation of TRNC (occupied areas of the Republic of Cyprus) was discussed in his meetings.

    FM Gul noted that he explained Turkey's general position towards EU during his meeting with EU Acting President Britain's FM Jack Straw and Greek FM Petros Molyviatis.

    Gul later left Newport for Turkey.

    [03] Erdogan calls on the EU not to impose new conditions

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (02.09.05) reported the following from Naples:

    Turkish Prime Minister Erdogan attended today the opening of the Istanbul Hall at the ''Maison de la Mediterranee'', the center of the Mediterranean Laboratory Foundation (Laboratorio Mediterraneo) in Naples. There he was decorated with the ''Europe Institutions Award'' by Michele Capasso, the chairman of the foundation.

    Delivering a speech, Erdogan underlined that Turkey was ready to become an EU member, stating that ''Turkey has nothing more to give (the EU).''

    He indicated that as a democratic and secular country, Turkey was the essential component of Mediterranean region, and thanked Italy for its support to Turkey's EU candidacy.

    Erdogan said: ''Few countries try to argue that EU is a Christian club. EU is not a Christian club, and it cannot be. We (Turkey) have assessed EU as an integration of values, from the beginning. When Turkey becomes a full member of the EU, the union will really be an integration of values.''

    Erdogan stated, ''Turkey can successfully play a role to bring together Western and Islamic worlds. If this happens, we can unite Islamic world of 1.5 billion people with Europe. This is a very important opportunity. Turkey has taken steps on this matter.''

    ''Actually a few countries create problems (regarding Turkey's accession). However, entry talks will start on October 3rd. Turkey has done what was asked of it,'' he stressed.

    ''Now Turkey has nothing more to give (the EU). We have done everything related to the Copenhagen political criteria,'' he indicated.

    ''Turkey has done what was asked of us on December 17... Let's stop playing to the gallery and try to get a result. That is what I hope and we will continue in this direction,'' he added.

    Later, Erdogan proceeded to Rome where he will meet Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi later in the day.

    [04] Gul maintains tough position on Turkey´s obligations towards the EU

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (02.09.05) reported the following from Ankara:

    Turkish Foreign Minister and Deputy Prime Minister Abdullah Gul said: ''Turkey will walk away from its talks with the European Union if it is offered anything less than full membership.''

    In his article published in ''The Economist'', Gul stated: "It was only in December (2004) that European Union leaders agreed to open membership talks with Turkey on October 3rd (2005). Yet as the date looms, doubts over whether the talks will start keep recurring. This is not because of any fault of my government, but rather because of certain countries within the EU."

    Gul noted that no one should expect Turkey to make any concession this time, stressing: "We have stuck to our side of the bargain, the EU should stick to theirs.''

    ORTAM newspaper publishes Mr Gul´s statements under the title: Big words by Gul.

    [05] Erdogan seconds Gul´s tough attitude towards the EU

    Ankara TRT 2 Television (03.09.05) broadcast that Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan expressed support for Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul's remarks that Turkey will quit if a negative development occurs on 3 October. Reminded about Gul's remarks aboard the plane en route from Italy to Turkey, Erdogan said: This is not something new. We have been saying that ever since we started this process.

    Erdogan recalled the government's statement that if the EU adopts a negative stand regarding 3 October after Turkey takes all the necessary steps pertaining to the EU Copenhagen political criteria, we will rename the Copenhagen criteria as Ankara criteria and continue on our road.

    Erdogan added that both sides will benefit from Turkey's EU accession. He stated: Turkey will constitute the most important balancing factor in the EU's shaping of a common mind. This issue [EU membership] is not a sine qua non for us. Neither will it [the failure to accede to the EU] be a disaster for Turkey.

    Reminded about the insults directed against Ataturk during the demonstration staged by an organization in the Fatih Mosque in Istanbul yesterday, the prime minister said that he conveyed the matter to the interior and justice ministers. Erdogan pointed out that the police should have intervened in the action.

    Istanbul NTV television (03.09.05) in a related report, adds the following remarks by Erdogan: "There is no such thing as preferential partnership in our lexicon. This would constitute diplomatically unethical conduct. There is no such partnership. The rules of penalty cannot be changed in mid-game. Playing with the rules at mid-road is unethical".

    [06] Statements by Erdogan after returning from Italy

    Ankara TRT 2 Television (03.09.05) broadcast the following:

    Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan declared that Turkey took all the necessary steps before 3 October, and added: There are no more steps we need to take now. If there is any party that needs to take steps, it is the members of the EU Council.

    Erdogan concluded his visit to Italy and returned to Turkey.

    In statements on arrival he said: We have no concerns pertaining to 3 October. There is no such thing. Moreover, if there is any such thing, our stand on the matter is clear. There is no question of our retracting from this stand. Everyone should be aware of this. We have always regarded the EU as an integrity of political values, and we have marched in that direction. I would like to make one point very clear: Certain columnists are mentioning -- knowingly or unknowingly, or out of their own ideological obsessions -- the expression of making concessions as though it was uttered by us. I would like to remind everyone once again that this stems from their own character. A person who is the prime minister of the Turkish Republic would never do that.

    [07] How Mr Erdogan explains the Copenhagen criteria

    Illegal Bayrak television (04.09.05) broadcast the following:

    Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has repeated once more that Turkey is in favor of solving the Cyprus Problem under the aegis of the United Nations.

    Speaking on Turkish Television, the Turkish Prime Minister reminded that it is was the Turkish Cypriot people who had voted overwhelming in support of the UN plan in last year´s referendum whilst the Greek Cypriot side had rejected the plan outright.

    Mr Erdogan pointed to the fact that therefore Turkey and the `Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus´ (occupied areas of the Republic of Cyprus) could not be held responsible for the non-solution on the island.

    Explaining that the EUs Copenhagen criteria clearly state that a country with an international territorial dispute cannot become a European Union member, Mr Erdogan said that the Union acted in contradiction with conditions set forth by itself by accepting the `Greek Cypriot Administration´ as member despite the Turkish Cypriot peoples overwhelming vote in favor of a solution to the Cyprus Problem in last year´s referendum.

    This has created a rather disturbing situation he said.

    [08] Mehmet Ali Talat stated that the EU should not have accepted a divided country as member of the Union

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (04.09.05) reports that the Turkish Cypriot leader Mr Mehmet Ali Talat stated that the EU should not have accepted a divided country as its member. Mr Talat made these statements in an interview that he gave to KIBRIS newspaper last Sunday.

    Mr Talat noted that there is indeed an anomaly in the EU and this is not that Turkey does not recognise the Republic of Cyprus, but the fact that a divided country is part of the EU. The EU should not have accepted a divided country, he alleged and added that this anomaly will be overcome with the solution of the Cyprus problem. He also stated that the recognition of the Republic of Cyprus, in its current form by Turkey, should not be expected.

    Mr Talat also stated that there is not a clear and concrete sign that talks between the two sides in Cyprus will start, however he stated that he expects some developments on this issue from the EU or another institution, in the coming days. As a side we are ready for a dialogue he said and alleged that the UN Secretary General is still waiting for a sign towards the solution from the Greek Cypriot side in order for the process of the negotiation to start again.

    The Turkish Cypriot leader alleged that the President of the Republic of Cyprus, Mr Tassos Papadopoulos, does not want to meet him because he does not want a solution. Mr Talat also said that the pseudostate does not demand recognition. He alleged that the pseudostate is more progressive as regards issues of democracy and freedom compared to the Republic of Cyprus and claimed that they do not want recognition but the unification of the island.

    In addition, as Turkish Cypriot daily YENI DUZEN newspaper reports (04.09.05), Mr Mehmet Ali Talat stated that the rights of the Turkish Cypriots are not a meze (Turkish dish). Mr Talat made these statements on Saturday during a meeting he had with a delegation of the Chamber of Industry and Commerce of Mersin, Turkey, headed by the Chambers chairman Mr Kadri Saman.

    Mr Talat stated that it cannot be accepted from any institution to put pressure on Turkey, to remove the support that it gave to the Turkish Cypriots, to abandon openly the Turkish Cypriots and to take the bread from their hands and try to take their rights.

    [09] ORTAM newspaper accuses Talat´s regime of abandoning the aim of solution and dealing with making money by selling out the occupied properties

    Under the title: Plundering land and headtitle: The aim of solution has been forgotten. Now the target is collecting money, Turkish Cypriot ORTAM newspaper (04.09.05) reports the following:

    The land in Northern Cyprus is sold piece by piece. Those areas which are classified as lower forest and coastal areas are parcelled out and given to whoever prepares and presents a project. Currently the Karpass region is the paradise for plundering land. Locals and foreigners go round in groups and choose land.

    On the one hand the land is traded from local to British, from British to British or from Israeli to somebody else, while on the other, the `officials´ of the `state´ carried out examinations in the area. Last Friday the `State Valuation Foundation´ visited the Koma tou Yialou region and carried out examinations.

    It was made known that after the establishment of a Tuna Fish Farm in the area a demand for a second farm was submitted and some `government´ circles support this.

    The environmentalists who are against the sale or leasing of the coastal and forest land are in agreement that the work going on is illegal.

    Stressing that the leasing is made according to law number 63/93, the environmentalists support that the forest and seafront land will be classified as non-arable land.

    [10] The puppet regime´s rash to exploit Greek Cypriot properties has lead to the exhumation of 24 more missing since 1974

    Illegal Bayrak television (04.09.05) broadcast the following:

    The Investigatory Committee on Missing Persons which has been carrying out urgent exhumation work together with a forensic expert from INFORCE in the `Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus´ (occupied areas of the Republic of Cyprus) has announced that remains of 24 new bodies-to have possibly belonged to Greek Cypriots missing since 1974 - have been exhumed in Girne (occupied Kyrenia).

    Speaking to the BRT, the Turkish representative to the Committee Rustem Tatar answered journalists questions on the latest developments in the exhumation work carried out in the `Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus´.

    Mr Tatar said that whether or not remains of 100 bodies exhumed before the arrival of INFORCE experts on the island belonged to Greek Cypriots missing in 1974 will be determined only after the DNA identification and anthropology laboratory is set up in UN controlled buffer zone later in the year.

    Explaining that urgent exhumations carried out on plots where construction work is to start soon was completed on the 11th of August, Mr Tatar refrained from giving a fixed date on when regular exhumation work will commence but suggested that it would probably start in the next month.

    The committee is expected to hold its next meeting next Thursday on 8th of September.

    [11] Three more Turkic countries are reportedly ready to launch flights to the occupied areas of Cyprus

    Turkish Cypriot daily ORTAM newspaper (05.09.05) reports that Kyrgyzstan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan are preparing to realize flights to the occupied areas of Cyprus. According to the paper, as a result of secret talks between officials of the occupation regime and the above-mentioned states, the visits are expected to be realized after 18 September, when the second flight from Azerbaijan to the illegal Tymbou airport is expected to take place. State officials, businessmen and journalists are expected to participate in the second Azeri flight.

    This flight will reportedly be followed by the visits from Kyrgyzstan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan. The delegations will be consisting of state officials, businessmen and journalists. After the visits, notes ORTAM, a Turkish Cypriot delegation will go to the above mentioned countries on an airplane of the illegal Turkish Cypriot Airlines.

    While an agreement was reached for the first flights with other Turkic states after Azerbaijan, it has been known that this will be mutual. It is alleged that during the visits mutual business possibilities will be searched and efforts will be exerted in order to make the business agreements that efforts are exerted to be made with Azerbaijan, writes ORTAM noting that according to the information obtained the Republican Turkish Party as well will undertake an active role in these visits.

    [12] Protocol for cooperation between the Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Industry and Aleppos Chamber of Trade signed

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (03.09.05) reports that a protocol for cooperation has been signed between the Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Industry and Aleppos Chamber of Trade from Syria.

    The paper writes that the protocol was signed on Friday by Salih Tunar and Abdulatif Badenjki, chairman and vice-president of the two organizations respectively. The agreement consists of fourteen paragraphs under the title Agreement for fraternizing Chambers. Its goal is reportedly the development of cooperation between the two chambers, the realization of mutual visits aiming at trade and the development of trade between the two countries.

    In his statements, Mr Tunar thanked Aleppos Chamber of Commerce for its visit to the occupied areas of Cyprus and described the visit as an important step for the opening of the Turkish Cypriot producers to the outside world.

    Furthermore, Mr Badenjki said that the agreement was a good start for the relations between the two countries and invited Mr Tunar and the members of the administrative council of the Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Industry to Syria.

    The paper publishes the fourteen articles of the agreement.


    [B] COMMENTARIES, EDITORIALS AND ANALYSIS

    [13] The Turkish Cypriot press argues that the fire on the two Greek Cypriot cars was an act of arson

    Turkish Cypriot papers, commending on the incident where two Greek Cypriot cars were damaged by fire outside of Ayios Mamas church in the occupied town of Morfou, argued that the fire was caused by arson.

    Columnist Dogan Harman writing in Turkish Cypriot daily CYPRUS TIMES (05.09.05) newspaper, under the title I believe the fire was caused by arson, wrote, inter alia, the following:

    A closer look at the pictures depicting the two Greek Cypriot cars damaged by fire while the service inside the Ayios Mamas Church was going on, has further strengthened my suspicion that the cause of the fire which burned down the two cars is arson...

    Needless to say that the reaction the public has shown upon hearing the news of the fire was clearly demonstrated what the essence of the issue actually is ...

    This was why speculation that the fire was a result of sabotage, spread much faster than the news of the fire itself...

    That left the Police Information Officer obliged to call the newspapers, and tell them that the cause of the fire "was not arson"...

    ...

    I urge everybody to take a closer look at the pictures of the burned cars... There is a quite distance between the red saloon car and the Mitsubishi van, and a minimum of 2 meters between the engines of the two cars...

    Officials have stated that the fire broke out after an electrical short-circuit in the internal lamp of the red saloon car and later spread to the van which was "closely parked besides"...

    Meanwhile, the front tyre of the red car seemed totally unaffected by the flames while that of the white van was completely burned down...

    How did this happen?...

    Does the statement issued by the police officials still sound logical after this observation?...

    ...

    One cannot help asking how many of all the Greek Cypriot cars that have so far crossed to the North have ever caught or caused fire because of an "unlucky short-circuit"...

    The burning down of the two Greek Cypriot cars does not seem to have been caused by a short-circuit whatsoever that occurred in one of the two cars...

    This is not an accident...

    The real cause of the fire is arson...

    I say this without any political concern...

    I wrote yesterday that the perpetrators of this crime are the defenders of the status quo...

    The nationality of these people is not important...

    Enemies of peace and solution do not have any nationality...

    Put in other words, they all belong to the same "nationality"!...

    People may or may not agree with what we have been saying...

    There may even be people who think last year's explosion which severely damaged the Ayios Mamas church were an accident too!...

    But that would merely serve to add to the nonsense!..."

    On the same issue, in the column "Letter from 'AFRIKA'..." AFRIKA newspaper (04.09.05), writes that the "police officials" did not use the same "fair" behaviour that they used in the past in similar incidents like this. They did not say that "the Greek Cypriots burned their cars themselves". The paper wonders: "Why did they exhibited a more fair behaviour this time? Is it because they do not want to make things difficult for Turkey, which struggles on Cyprus issue at the door of the EU?".

    In its Saturday AFRIKA paper (03.09.05), under the title "If you burn it, we will pay for it", reported that the so-called Minister of Interior Ozkan Murat stated that they would compensate the cars that were burned. The paper added: "Let them burn it, we will pay for it. Let them do whatever they do and we will cover it. RTP (Republican Turkish Party) which claims to be in the "power", in reality it wanted to say that 'we are not qualified to find if there were perpetrators, let us pay and let us close the issue by covering it." This is the situation in our country!"

    [14] Columnist in VATAN assesses the Israeli- Pakistani meeting as changing the balances in the Middle East

    Istanbul VATAN newspaper (02.09.05) publishes the following report by Deger Akal under the title: "A new role for Turkey":

    "On World Peace Day Istanbul played host to a critical meeting that will take its place in the pages of the history of the Middle East peace process. In a step that may change balances in the Middle East the foreign ministers of Pakistan and Israel held their first official meeting in Istanbul. The two countries which do not recognize each other as "states" thus took their first step toward "recognizing" each other. Minister of State Mehmet Aydin served as the mediator of the meeting.

    Susbtitle: Why Istanbul?

    At this year's Davos summit the foreign ministers of Pakistan and Israel held the last of the secret contacts that had been going on between the two countries over the last two years. The two ministers agreed to meet [officially] but had a hard time deciding "where." Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf eventually initiated the "Istanbul agreement" between the two countries. Musharraf chose Istanbul because Istanbul is in a Muslim and friendly country. Moreover Turkey is the only country that has "strategic ties" with both Israel and Pakistan.

    Subtitle: Why now?

    [The timing was decided by the following considerations:]

    Israel has withdrawn from the Gaza Strip and declared that it remains committed to the "roadmap."

    A conservative administration has taken office in Iran which shares a border with Pakistan.

    King Fahd who had been holding a sword over Pakistan has died.

    The United States has been pressuring Pakistan, an ally, to establish relations with Israel.

    Subtitle: How was meeting organized?

    After the completion of Israel's withdrawal from Gaza, Musharraf gave the go-ahead for a meeting "now." Pakistani Prime Minister Shaukat Aziz called Prime Minister Erdogan and asked him if he would be willing to host such a meeting. Erdogan replied that he would be happy to do so. Erdogan then called Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon and finalized the historic meeting in Istanbul.

    Subtitle: Why the secrecy?

    The meeting was not disclosed to anyone except the leaders and the senior bureaucrats of the three countries because of concerns over security and sabotaging acts.

    Subtitle: Dual pressure on Iran

    The rapprochement between Israel and Pakistan, coming on the top of the close relations between Turkey and Israel, puts the conservative regime in Tehran in the claws of a pincer. This step also means that the United States has toppled another anti-Israel fortress.

    Subtitle: What decisions were taken?

    Initially Pakistan will send a delegation to Gaza. The delegation will bring together Israeli and Palestinian officials around a table and ask them to "establish peace."

    Pakistan will ask Palestine "to prevent violence."

    Initially Israel and Pakistan will exchange consulates.

    Subtitle: Turkey established bridge

    The meeting was widely reported by international news agencies. Reuters: "Muslim and secular Turkey established a bridge between Israel and Pakistan." AP: "Turkey, whose population is overwhelmingly Muslim, hosted this meeting because of its neutral status."

    /SK


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