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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Press and Other Media, 05-12-02

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.231/05 02.12.05

[A] NEWS ITEMS

  • [01] More reactions on the Ledra Street barricade; Kutlay Erk joins those who accuse the Greek Cypriot side; The shop owners are against the construction of a bridge
  • [02] AFRIKA: The Gate of the Western Barricade has been closed down
  • [03] Volkan: Turks as injured Party will file lawsuits
  • [04] The computerization of the self-styled Department of Lands and Surveys has started in occupied Cyprus with the financial aid of Turkey
  • [05] Alpay Durduran: We must gain the support of the Greek Cypriots
  • [06] The Supreme Military Council convened
  • [07] Erdogan´s adviser stresses the importance of the ruling Islamic party for Turkey´s foreign policy
  • [08] AKP appears divided over the Turkish identity
  • [09] The Turkish economy is developing very fast
  • [10] The TRNC Handball Federation will become member of the European Handball Federation
  • [B] COMMENTARIES, EDITORIALS AND ANALYSIS

  • [11] Basaran Duzgun: The property regime established after 1974 with a conqueror mentality on the basis of spoils and plunder has collapsed

  • [A] NEWS ITEMS

    [01] More reactions on the Ledra Street barricade; Kutlay Erk joins those who accuse the Greek Cypriot side; The shop owners are against the construction of a bridge

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (02.12.05) reports that the self-styled mayor of the occupied part of Nicosia, Mr Kutlay Erk said yesterday that the pedestrian overpass in the area of Ledra Street, center of the divided capital, is being built in the Turkish side and that the so-called Security Forces Command did what is necessary to ensure that the crossings are realized.

    Mr Erk accused the Greek Cypriot side of using excuses not to open the barricade in the area.

    Mr Erk noted that while they were opening the crossing point in the area, they had to ensure a passage for the army to Ermou Street which is crosswise to Ledra Street and it is the road of contact of the army along the ceasefire line. That is why, he added, they found the solution of building a bridge. Mr Erk admitted that the area is a place of dispute between the UN and the Turkish side, but the Greek Cypriot side has nothing to do with it.

    He said that half of the bridge will be covered and that its height will be 270 cm and its width 350 cm. He pointed out that they are thinking of ways to help the persons with special needs and the elder people to use the pedestrian overpass.

    Mr Erk said that the representatives of the press are not allowed to take pictures at the area or follow the works, but he expressed the belief that soon this will be possible.

    Furthermore, under title Akinci: I wish a solution was possible without the bridge, KIBRIS writes also that a delegation of the Peace and Democracy Movement (BDH) headed by its chairman, Mr Mustafa Akinci, visited the area yesterday. In a written statement issued by BDH, Mr Akinci expressed the belief that the opening of the barricade at this stage is very difficult, noted that nothing could take the place of reaching a solution to the Cyprus problem and added though that the opening of more crossing points between the sides would be positive.

    Meanwhile, under the title The tradesmen are against the pedestrian overpass, Turkish Cypriot daily HALKIN SESI newspaper (02.12.05) reports that the chairman of the Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Tradesmen and Craftsmen, Mr Hurrem Tulga said yesterday that they are against the construction of a pedestrian overpass in the area of Ledra Street and that the pedestrian overpass is creating a new wall in Nicosia.

    Mr Tulga noted that starting work without prior agreement by the two municipalities is wrong and added: While a wall is being removed, we have created another wall. Four five stairs will be used to get on this place and other stairs will be used for getting off. This is nothing but an obstacle.

    Meanwhile, Turkish Cypriot daily AFRIKA newspaper (02.12.05) refers to the issue under the title The bridge belongs to the civilians and the passage to the army! The paper writes, inter alia, the following: Those who are not building pedestrian overpass in main roads in order to prevent the traffic accidents, are constructing a bridge in Lokmaci (Tr. Note: This is the name that the Turks call the part of Ledra Street that extends into the occupied areas of the Republic of Cyprus) by spending billions! Kutlay Erk admitted that the bridge is constructed to facilitate the military patrol.

    Furthermore, commenting on the statements of Mr Erk, Turkish Cypriot daily ORTAM newspaper (02.12.05) writes that after the Turkish Cypriot leader, Mr Mehmet Ali Talat and the self-styled Prime Minister, Mr Ferdi Sabit Soyer, Mr Erk as well accuses the Greek Cypriot side.

    I/Ts

    [02] AFRIKA: The Gate of the Western Barricade has been closed down

    Under the above title Turkish Cypriot daily AFRIKA newspaper (02.12.05) writes that yesterday the administration of the TRNC, which these days seems to be very willing and enthusiastic about opening gates, closed down one gate.

    The paper reports that the gate in Pergamos village known as the gate of western barricade was closed down upon orders which came from above. When people, who crossed over the above-mentioned point in the morning, tried to return home using the same place in the afternoon were told that the gate had been closed down. When the asked why, they were told that the gate had been closed down upon orders given by the army.

    The paper notes that the above-mentioned crossing point was not official, but the inhabitants of Pergamos and Turkish Cypriots who work in the free areas of the Republic of Cyprus have been using it until yesterday, when they were told to use the official crossing point which is in the area. People told AFRIKA that the gate had been used to facilitate the Turkish Cypriot inhabitants of Pyla and Pergamos villages when they want to go to their fields and to make crossings easier at Pergamos crossing point.

    I/Ts.

    [03] Volkan: Turks as injured Party will file lawsuits

    Local Turkish Cypriot daily VOLKAN newspaper (02.12.05) reports under banner headlines that if the so-called new amended property law, which stipulates returning of property to its lawful owners, is passed, those Turks and foreigners who made investment based on the title-deeds given to them by the occupation regime will become injured party and thus will file lawsuits against the ´TRNC´ and Turkey asking millions of dollars compensation.

    Volkan reports that legal experts have assessed the so-called draft law and expressed the view that, those Turks and foreigners who were given TRNC title or state guarantee for investments when the draft law is passed they will become injured party and they will recourse to the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) to file lawsuits against Turkey and the TRNC.

    Volkan in an other report says that if the above mentioned draft Law is passed, 270 churches and their property in the occupied area will be returned to the Greek Orthodox Church together with the moral compensation for 31 years.

    Volkan reports that in the first place Ap.Andreas Monastery, Ay. Mamas church, the church at the centre of Kyrenia are among the churches which will be returned to the Greek Orthodox Church immediately.

    Volkan alleges that soon these churches and monasteries in the occupied areas will become EOKA nests by the help of priests and the church and they will be terrorist dens.

    Moreover, Melih Asik, writing in his column open window, Turkish daily Milliyet newspaper (02.12.05) under the title shock in Cyprus says that During the coming days the TRNC Assembly will start debating a very important draft law and quotes Assistant Prof. Hasan Unal of Bilkent University who evaluated the said draft law and said that in the end, if this law is passed, the financial bill will amount billions of dollars and 30 thousand Greek Cypriots will have right to settle in the Turkish side.

    When asked why this draft was prepared Prof. Unal said: With the pressure of our government because, this administration, by saying yes to all the demands coming from outside, surrendering became policy to this administration. We have to note the following as well, with this draft law Varosha will be handed over to the Greek Cypriots like a Turkish delight lokum.

    [04] The computerization of the self-styled Department of Lands and Surveys has started in occupied Cyprus with the financial aid of Turkey

    Turkish Cypriot daily YENI DYZEN newspaper (02.12.05) reports that the occupied territories of the Republic of Cyprus have started the computerization of the self-styled Department of land and Surveys with the financial aid of Turkey.

    As the paper writes 1 million and two hundred thousand title deeds, along with 6 thousand maps will be computerized in the framework of this project. The Turkish Republic has offered 146.951 dollars for the project.

    The awarding of contract for the computerization has finished on the 11th of November 2005. Three of the illegal universities in the OTRC will undertake the project and a protocol was signed between them and the self-styled prime minister Ferdi Soyer.

    C/S

    [05] Alpay Durduran: We must gain the support of the Greek Cypriots

    Turkish Cypriot daily OZGUR DUSUNCE newspaper (02.12.05) reports that Mr Alpay Durduran, the Secretary of Foreign Affairs of the New Party (YP) has announced, during a press conference, the proposal of his party for a comprehensive solution of the Cyprus problem.

    Mr Durduran stated that those who govern in North Cyprus are acting together with Turkey and they try to spread the idea that there is no other way than this. Mr Durduran has also pointed out the importance of the foreigners support for the solution of the Cyprus problem. However, he said, the most important thing is the support of the Greek Cypriots in order for the government in the north to be influenced.

    He also said that the state and the persons who are on the top of the government are trying to get the support of the Turkish Cypriots by showing the Greek Cypriots as the enemy and as the devil. Instead of doing this a new policy must be followed, he noted.

    C/S

    [06] The Supreme Military Council convened

    Turkish Milliyet newspaper (02/12/05) reported that the Supreme Military Council convened under Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan at the Office of the Chief of the General Staff headquarters on 1 December 2005.

    The following issues were discussed at the meeting:

    The war readiness of the Turkish Armed Forces was assessed and prominent modernization projects, which will maintain the Armed Forces deterrent quality, were reviewed.

    The recent developments in the Middle East, the present situation in Iraq, and its impact on Turkey were taken up.

    The fight against separatism and reactionism were assessed and it was stressed at the meeting that the fight against separatist terrorism should continue effectively together with all the state institutions. The recent activities of the reactionist sector against the secular republic were also reviewed.

    In addition, the Council decided to discharge four military personnel, whose positions were reviewed for lack of discipline.

    Moreover, Turkish private TV channel NTV (02.12.05) 08.00 Hours) news bulletin reported that, Mr Erdogan and the Defence Minister Mr Vecdi Gonul put reservations on the dismissal decision.

    [07] Erdogan´s adviser stresses the importance of the ruling Islamic party for Turkey´s foreign policy

    Anatolia news agency (01/12/05) reported from Ankara that Mr Egemen Bagis, the Foreign Policy adviser of Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Thursday that Turkey was very active in foreign policy and had good relations with its neighbors thanks to the AK Party government.

    Speaking about the foreign policy of Turkey at AK Party's Political Academy Conference Hall, Bagis said that Turkey strengthened its relations with all countries except Armenia during AKP rule. Only Armenia didn't respond to Turkey's initiatives to develop relations with it, Bagis indicated.

    Referring to relations with the US, Bagis said that Turkey was in close cooperation with this country. He said that Cyprus, the Greater Middle East Initiative, Middle East Peace Process, Afghanistan and Iraq were the most important topics of Turkish-American relations.

    "The only problem in those issues was seen in Iraq", commented Bagis, stressing that Turkey expected the US, which had always extended great support to Turkey in countering terrorism, to show the same concern in fighting terrorist organization PKK in northern Iraq.

    Bagis indicated that Turkey had three concerns about Iraq, listing them as safeguarding Iraq's territorial integrity, equal representation among Iraqi people (in respect of ethnicity and religion) and repartition and use of natural resources on an equal footing, among Iraqi people. Upon a question about the possibility of creation of "a new state of Kurdistan", partition of Iraq and/or dismemberment of Turkey, Bagis said that "nobody has the power to take any part of Turkish territory... And nobody wishes to leave Turkey for another country."

    Referring to the Greater Middle East Initiative, Bagis said that Turkey supported the initiative and also the democratization process in the region.

    Upon a question about Prime Minister Erdogan's visits abroad, Bagis said that Turkey which was very passive in foreign policy in the past, tried to catch up with a new dynamic foreign policy. "Prime Minister's each trip abroad has fruitful outcomes," Bagis said.

    Referring to the Cyprus issue, Bagis said that the international community was actually more positive about Turkish Cypriots and world public opinion saw at last that it was the Greek Cypriot side which opposes settlement on the island.

    Upon a question about Leyla Sahin case (related to the ban on wearing Islamic head scarf), Bagis said that "this is a human tragedy and it should be considered within the scope of freedom of expression."

    [08] AKP appears divided over the Turkish identity

    Istanbul Cumhuriyet newspaper (01/12/05) publishes the following:

    Prime Minister [Recep] Tayyip Erdogan's statements regarding "sub-identities" and "supra-identities" have created unease within the AKP [ruling Justice and Development Party]. A good many parliamentary deputies, particularly those with nationalist backgrounds, do not consider Erdogan's policy toward the issue of the East and Southeast to be correct. One parliamentarian, saying that "We will issue our warnings, and if the party leadership remains indifferent, we will do whatever may be required of us", conveyed the message that there could be defections from the party.

    Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan's statements regarding the Kurdish issue and sub-identities and supra-identities have led to a rift within the party. A good many parliamentarians, led by those of nationalist background, are reacting to Erdogan's statements. Hatay Deputy Fuat Gecen was the first parliamentarian to voice his reaction on this topic within the party's parliamentary group meeting.

    As for the other deputies who are unhappy with the situation, they have decided to follow developments and then determine a stance. One deputy said that "We will issue our warnings. If the party leadership should take a stance of 'Let whoever wants to talk, but we will do what we think best', then we will do whatever may be required of us. We will see what transpires henceforth." It was noted that, should Erdogan continue his statements, defections from the party could occur.

    Yet another parliamentarian, stressing that the problem cannot be resolved with "definitions of sub-identities and supra-identities", said: "Provide whatever descriptions of identity you like, if the citizen in the region [i.e., the Kurdish region] does not see, or does not want to see, himself as an individual from this country, this will be no solution. If the statements of the Prime Minister are pleasing to the parliamentary deputies from Hakkari or Diyarbakir, they disturb the deputies from Mersin or Konya. Do the deputies from the region feel themselves more loyal to their general chairman, or to [Iraqi Kurdistan Regional Government President] Mas'ud Barzani? This has to be asked."

    Noting that the Prime Minister's statements might create satisfaction in the region, yet increase feelings of nationalism in other people, the same parliamentarian commented that "There is a shortage of alternatives in politics. If there were an alternative, it would not be possible for the AKP to keep standing."

    Yet another parliamentary deputy, stating that Erdogan has acted and established policy under the influence of his Kurdish-origin advisors, said that disagreement has been created in the party on this issue, and that being of Kurdish origin has come to be considered more important.

    [09] The Turkish economy is developing very fast

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (01/12/05) reported the following from Istanbul: Turkey can become the tiger of Europe", IMF Representative in Turkey Hugh Bredenkamp and World Bank Turkey Director Andrew Vorkink said on Thursday.

    Taking the floor in the Third International Finance Summit which began in Turkish metropolis of Istanbul, Bredenkamp said that Turkish economy had a bright future. "I can say that Turkey has caught up with its rivals, and has even surpassed them," he indicated.

    Bredenkamp stressed that economic problems of the past would not be seen again in Turkey, no matter who ruled the country.

    On the other hand, Vorkink said that Turkey had overcome the economic crisis, and was on its way to becoming a country of prosperity.

    Turkish State Minister and chief negotiator Ali Babacan has indicated that the government could reduce more the rate of corporate tax.Delivering a speech at the opening ceremony of the "Third Finance Summit" in Istanbul on Thursday, Babacan noted that corporate tax would be cut back from 30 to 20 percent at the beginning of 2006, adding that thereafter the government expected the real sector to employ only registered workers. Babacan noted, "The government took a significant step in reducing the corporate tax. It is also ready to take a similar step in value-added tax. But we must see a net decrease in unregistered economy."

    Babacan underscored that Turkey should have a stable financial system to be involved in the global economy. "Finance organizations should be managed well. There should be a solid supervision," he stated.

    Recalling that the government separated Saving Deposits Insurance Fund (TMSF) and Banking Regulation & Supervision Board (BDDK) from each other and enacted a banking law complying with the EU acquis, Babacan noted that his government was also working on other regulations.

    "We have launched a program on assessment of the financial sector in association with the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank.

    Practices regarding supervision of Turkish institutions will continue on an international platform," he stressed.

    [10] The TRNC Handball Federation will become member of the European Handball Federation

    Turkish Cypriot Cumhuriyet newspaper (02/12/05) reports under the title Seven months left to be saved from the Sports isolation that the President of the TRNC (occupied territories of the Republic of Cyprus) Handball Federation, Mr Zafer Can, stated that the international isolation which is going on for 22 years since 1983 will end in seven months.

    In statements made to the correspondent of Ankara Anatolia news agency, Mr Zafer Can said that they will apply to the European Handball Federation (EHF) on 4 December, they will send the application file at the end of the year and that decision will be taken next May during the EHF Congress.

    Stressing the role being played by the President of the Turkish Handball Federation, Mr Tarik Cengiz, in the backstages, Mr Can said: According to information becoming clear on the issue, in March next year it is possible to reach to a result. The best support for our membership application comes from the Turkish Handball Federation and its estimable President Tarik Cengiz.

    In the end works of this kind are being carried out partly in the backstages and with good relations. Tarik Cengiz is doing very important backstage work for us. We shall spend a lot of effort until May in order to achieve our membership.

    The TRNC National Handball Team was invited to the tournament hosted by Kosovo and in which participants were Kosovo, Bosnia Herzegovina and Makedonia. This invitation and our matches there will definitely be in our application file to the EHF and they will be very supportive. Because the countries we played with at Kosovo are all members of the international federation. This tournament was the first step towards lifting our isolation.

    Mr Can concluded by saying that in addition to Turkey all the Balkan countries support the TRNC´s membership, that the President of FYROM´s Handball Federation is providing them with information on how they achieved their membership and that they will continue along the road map prepared with Turkey last September to achieve membership in the EHF next May.


    [B] COMMENTARIES, EDITORIALS AND ANALYSIS

    [11] Basaran Duzgun: The property regime established after 1974 with a conqueror mentality on the basis of spoils and plunder has collapsed

    Turkish Cypriot Kibris newspaper (30/11/05) publishes a commentary by Basarn Durgun in which he tries to convey his conclusions after two-hours of talks with Mr Mehmet Ali Talat on the efforts of the occupying force and its subservient regime to create new parameters regarding the userpation of the Greek Cypriot properties.

    The commentary under the title Get ready for the property earthquake is as follows:

    We are standing at the threshold of a major earthquake where the property issue is concerned. This is true in terms of both the Turkish and the Greek Cypriots. Some 2,000 Greek Cypriots are paying frequent visits to the European Court of Human Rights [ECHR]. Similar to Loizidou, they hope to receive high amounts of damages.

    The Greek Cypriots' dream in this regard has become Turkey's nightmare. Loizidou has received more than enough for the damages that she suffered for not being able to use her property. Now she wants her property back. Turkey will either return Loizidou her property or it will be suspended from the Council of Europe.

    Suspension from the Council of Europe means heavy political and economic damages for Turkey. And to return the Greek Cypriots their property means that the Turkish Cypriots will lose everything.

    Providing guidance, the ECHR is saying: "You should establish a property compensation committee that will be accepted in the international arena."

    The Greek Cypriots who want their property back will apply to this committee.

    If they are not satisfied, they will be able to apply to the ECHR.

    Turkey and the TRNC (occupied territories of the Republic of Cyprus) have already been convinced in this regard. The TRNC (self-styled) Government is making preparations for amending Article 159 of the ´Constitution´ -- an article that constitutes an obstacle before "the return of property." And the committee will be established later.

    The principles of operation of this committee will be determined by a regulation. And the Greek Cypriots will be asked to apply to this committee.

    All right, but what will happen if, for example, a Greek Cypriot from Girne [occupied Kyrenia] applies to this committee for the return of his field in Girne and is able to receive back his field?

    What will happen to the Turkish Cypriot who is using the field? Or let us say that a Greek Cypriot received back his house. Will the Turkish Cypriot living in that house become homeless?

    Yesterday we were together with (self-styled) President Talat. We talked about these issues for about two hours. We tried to figure out the outcomes of certain examples.

    My colleagues interpreted the two-hour conversation that focused on a critical and complicated issue such as the property issue in different ways.

    These are the conclusions that I drew from the conversation:

    1. The property regime that had been established after 1974 with a conqueror mentality on the basis of spoils and plunder has collapsed. Turkey and the KKTC have remained under the ruins and currently they are making efforts to get out of the ruins safely.

    2. Regardless of whether or not the Cyprus issue is resolved, regardless of whether or not a United Cyprus Republic is established, and regardless of whether or not the situation continues as is, Turkey and the KKTC can never -- but never -- continue to pursue their current property regime.

    President Talat asserted that a strategy will be pursued within the framework of the UN rule that is summarized as "human right related to property can never constitute an obstacle before a political solution."

    There are hundreds of questions regarding the details. He cannot answer these questions. This is because lawyers from both Europe and our country are working on this issue and they have not completed their studies yet.

    Furthermore the regulations that will arrange the activities of the committee have not yet been drawn up. In fact, no one knows whether or not the Constitution will be amended.

    After all, we are not talking about "returning the properties of the Greek Cypriots overnight."

    There is no doubt that the opposite is not true, either. We merely know one thing. It is necessary to safely remove the Turkish Cypriots from the ruins of the property regime, which has collapsed.

    We hope that they will be successful. Or will the Turkish Cypriots who had become migrants and who had lost their homes time and time again once again pay the price for other people's wrong policies?

    We will wait and see. The steps that will be taken by the KKTC regarding the property issue will deeply affect the Greek Cypriot Administration who has pursued a policy that resembles the policy of the Turkish side where this issue is concerned.

    After all they are no longer facing an administration that says: 'Forget about your property in the south."

    And therefore each and every Greek Cypriot who will receive his property from the committee will also remove a brick from the distorted system that the Greek Cypriot Administration has established over the properties of Turkish Cypriots in the south.

    The fact that its own citizens have cooperated with the ´authority´ in the north will constitute the other axis of the tragedy.

    In short, Cyprus is entering the coverage area of a high scale earthquake where the property issue is concerned.

    If a solution is found soon, it will be possible to live this earthquake in an open field and to overcome it with minor damages.

    This is the third and the most important conclusion that I drew from yesterday's meetings.

    EG/


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