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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Press and Other Media, 06-01-27

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.19/06 27.01.06

[A] NEWS ITEMS

  • [01] Talat says that the Action Plan contains the promises given to the Turkish Cypriots by the EU and the international community.
  • [02] Mr Erdogan feels relaxed about Cyprus, but Turkish troops continue to occupy EU territory and violate the human rights of EU citizens.
  • [03] Gul notes necessity of de facto steps in Cyprus. No mention of the occupation troops. He met Straw.
  • [04] Press Conference by Gul and Straw in Ankara. No reference to Turkey´s occupation troops in Cyprus
  • [05] PACE MPs are reported to be supporting the Action Plan.
  • [06] Gul continues Turkey´s efforts to avoid its EU obligations by promoting the Action Plan to EU and other Foreign Ministers.
  • [07] The Turkish electronic media broadcast that Telsim was sold to the British Vodafone.
  • [08] Forged money in the occupied area of Kyrenia.
  • [09] Ankara´s breakaway regime asked the Republic of Cyprus to extent electricity supply to the occupied areas for one more week.
  • [10] Erdogan said Annan approaches the Action Plan positively. Statements after meeting Annan at Davos.

  • [A] NEWS ITEMS

    [01] Talat says that the Action Plan contains the promises given to the Turkish Cypriots by the EU and the international community

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (27.01.06) reports that the Turkish Cypriot leader, Mehmet Ali Talat has said that the proposals made recently by the Turkish Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr Abdullah Gul, regarding the Cyprus problem consist of the promises given before to the Turkish Cypriots by the European Union and the international community.

    In statements to KIBRIS TV, Mr Talat said that he is very satisfied with the meeting he had with the British Secretary for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, Mr Jack Straw. Mr Talat argued that at the press conference Mr Straw gave during his visit to the Island, the British Foreign Secretary has openly expressed his support to the stance of the Turkish Cypriot side. He noted that the continuation of this support is important and added that they expect this support to be turned into practice from now on.

    Mr Talat reiterated his view that the opening of the closed city of Varosha is a part of the overall solution of the Cyprus problem.

    I/Ts.

    [02] Mr Erdogan feels relaxed about Cyprus, but Turkish troops continue to occupy EU territory and violate the human rights of EU citizens

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (26.01.06) reported from Ankara that Prime Minister Erdogan left for Davos, Switzerland, to attend the World Economic Forum meetings.

    Holding a news conference at Ankara's Esenboga Airport prior to his departure Erdogan said: "As you know, I met British Foreign Secretary Jack Straw earlier in the day. Britain's attitude about opening of the negotiation process between Turkey and the EU was pleasing. Economic and political relations between Turkey and Britain have reached a significant level. We attach great importance to our bilateral relations."

    Upon a question about the Cyprus issue, Prime Minister Erdogan said: "For the time being, we feel relaxed about the Cyprus issue since we have taken further steps. As a guarantor state, Turkey has always undertaken a pioneering role. We have been trying to do everything in our power in a sincere and honest way. The international community extends support to our recent action plan on the Cyprus issue.

    We expect the other parties to take some positive steps too. We are in favor of a fair, lasting and comprehensive solution. Actually, we have to find a solution. The process has still been continuing. We are relaxed since we announced a new action plan. We will wait and see the next action of the other parties."

    [03] Gul notes necessity of de facto steps in Cyprus. No mention of the occupation troops. He met Straw

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (26.01.06) reported the following from Ankara that the Turkish Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul met with British Foreign Secretary Jack Straw on Thursday.

    Gul said that Straw's visit to the `TRNC´ shows how objective Britain is about the solution of the Cyprus problem, and this visit encouraged Turkish Cypriots as well, noted diplomatic sources.

    Gul stressed the necessity of taking de facto steps from now on.

    He noted. "Most of the strategical matters happen in this region. The attitude of Greek Cypriot administration should not block the strategic interests of the EU."

    Gul told Straw that Turkey is willing to solve the issue, and wants comprehensive solution. "This is a sincerity test," said Gul.

    "We want the problem to be solved rapidly, but this is not possible with only one side's efforts. None of the promises which have been engaged to Turkish Cypriots is kept. EU should show that they are doing something for Turkish Cypriots as well," said Gul.

    During the meeting, Gul gave Straw a list which includes Turkey's previous initiatives regarding the Cyprus issue.

    Straw said that they support Turkey's initiative, and they gave this support as it complies with the strategic interests of the EU.

    Noting that Turkey has also responsibilities to fulfill, Straw said that Turkey should open its ports and airports to Republic of Cyprus within the scope of Customs Union Additional Protocol.

    Sources said that Gul and Straw also took up elections in Iraq, general situation in the country and Kirkuk, adding that both ministers said the operation of the political structure in Iraq despite the difficulties was important.

    Gul expressed Turkey's concerns over Kirkuk to Straw, who said that Britain wanted to consult with Turkey about all issues concerning Iraq.

    Regarding Iran, Gul said that Turkey was against all nuclear weapons in the region, adding that countries had only the right to use nuclear energy for peaceful purposes. Gul said Turkey told Iranian officials directly that Iran should be in cooperation with the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) and the EU Three and should be transparent in its policies.

    Gul and Straw referred to the good bilateral relations in the meeting and it was stressed that the commercial and economic relations between the two countries were around 10 billion USD. Gul explained Turkey's economic performance in the meeting and said that investments between the two countries should further increase.

    The two ministers also welcomed the recent cooperation between Turkey and Britain in fight against organized crimes and terrorism.

    [04] Press Conference by Gul and Straw in Ankara. No reference to Turkey´s occupation troops in Cyprus

    Istanbul NTV television (26.01.06) broadcast live the joint press conference by Foreign Ministers Gul and Straw in Ankara. Following are Mr Gul´s and Mr Straw´s opening statements and their replies to questions on Cyprus:

    We reviewed many issues together with the honorable prime minister this morning. We now had the opportunity to discuss in more detail the Cyprus issue and the various regional and international issues. Bilateral relations are, anyway, continuing in the desired manner. Both economic and political relations, all of them. You will recall that in line with an agreement reached between the prime ministers of the two countries, we decided to hold close consultations every year. These consultations are being held in a regular manner.

    The visit Mr Straw made to the `Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus´ (occupied territories of the Republic of Cyprus) was most appreciated. He has shown courage. Many criticisms have been leveled, but we believe that he has done the right thing. In fact, we are most thankful. He exerted an extraordinary effort within the framework of Turkey's EU accession talks. The Turkish people will never forget these efforts. We will always remember the efforts exerted by Prime Minister Blair, Mr. Jack Straw, and their valuable colleagues.

    As I have already mentioned, we discussed the Cyprus issue in detail today. We also discussed issues pertaining to Iraq as well as other issues concerning our region. We discussed nuclear issues. We exchanged views on these issues. We will be in close contact. In short, this visit has been a very beneficial one. I once again welcome him and express my pleasure over hosting him in Turkey.

    Straw: It is a great pleasure to be in Istanbul and Ankara.

    Last night to receive the award from TUSIAD, which was a great honor, and then to have many discussions on bilateral, regional, and international issues with Prime Minister Erdogan and yourself.

    We in the United Kingdom and in the UK Presidency were delighted to play our part in the historic decision made on October the 3d, but our part was minor compared to the part played by Turkey, its people, and its government of Prime Minister Erdogan and of you, Foreign Minister Gul. It was the result of your work and the achievements here in Turkey in recent years that this decision was made.

    It is now of crucial importance that Turkey, as an applicant state, and also the European Union, its Commissions and individual members, treat this application in the same way, no less and no more, than any other application for membership has been treated -- on its merits with the same conditions and the same benchmarks.

    On Cyprus, it is a matter of regret that the Annan plan was accepted by one community and rejected by the other. This is democracy. It is not in anybody's interests in Cyprus for the island to remain divided to the detriment of both communities. So we want to see further efforts being put into a settlement, and in that regard I welcome, as the United Nations has welcomed, and the European Union has welcomed, the speech and the action plan Minister Gul which you made two days ago. And I hope that this is seen by others, on reflection, as a constructive initiative. It is not the last word on the issue, but may help to move matters forward. And we have also, as you have heard, discussed the wide range of bilateral and international issues.

    Question: Minister Straw, you said that you have welcomed Turkey's new action plan on Cyprus. Do you think it will help the EU, which insists on Turkey to open its ports to the Greek Cypriots as part of the Customs Union? Do you think it will make the EU change its position?

    Straw: Look, without going into details, Turkey, like any other applicant state, is under obligations which arise from its application for European Union membership. It is for the Commission in the first place to make an assessment of whether any applicant country is complying with those obligations, not for me to offer a view in anticipation. As for, however, the proposals put forward by Minister Gul, as I say, they are my judgment and the judgment of the European Union and the United Nations, they are constructive proposals which should be taken seriously and which I believe ought to contribute to an improved atmosphere within Europe as a whole.

    [05] PACE MPs are reported to be supporting the Action Plan

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (26.01.06) reported the following from Strasbourg:

    The Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) gave its blessings to the Cyprus Action Plan of Turkey.

    Within two days nearly 70 European parliamentarians have signed the written statement prepared by the Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Turkish parliamentarians in PACE, supporting the action plan.

    The statement notes that the current status quo in Cyprus cannot be accepted and it is high time to take new action to solve Cyprus problem.

    Noting that efforts to solve the Cyprus problem have failed so far, the statement stresses that `Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus´ (occupied territories of the Republic of Cyprus) is still aggrieved due to international embargo.

    The statement also calls on EU and European Council to lift international embargo on `TRNC´.

    In the action plan made public on Tuesday Turkey said that it would open its ports and airports to Greek Cypriot ships and planes in exchange of the lifting of `restrictions´ on Turkish Cypriots.

    [06] Gul continues Turkey´s efforts to avoid its EU obligations by promoting the Action Plan to EU and other Foreign Ministers

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (26.01.06) reported the following from Ankara:

    Turkish Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul has started a fresh diplomatic push after he made public Turkey's new ten-article action plan regarding Cyprus, diplomatic sources said on Thursday.

    According to them, Gul called on the phone EU Acting President Austria's Foreign Minister Ursula Plassnik, Spanish Foreign Minister Miguel Moratinos, Swiss Foreign Minister Laila Freivalds and European Commissioner for enlargement Olli Rehn, and asked for their support for Turkey's new plan.

    Gul is also expected to speak to UN Security Council permanent member China's Foreign Minister Li Zhaoxing later today.

    In the action plan made public on Tuesday, Turkey said that it would open its ports and airports to Greek Cypriot ships and planes in exchange for the lifting of restrictions on Turkish Cypriots.

    Later on the same day A.A. reported the following from Madrid/Rome: Spain has extended full support to Turkey´s Action Plan for Cyprus, it was reported on Thursday.

    Spanish foreign Ministry said today that the action plan which was announced by the Turkish government on Tuesday constituted a positive step regarding settlement of Cyprus problem and added that the Spanish government called all concerned sides to work for a lasting settlement on the island under the supervision of UN.

    Italy welcomed on Thursday the new action plan announced by Turkish Foreign Minister and Deputy Prime Minister Abdullah Gul for Cyprus on Tuesday.

    Italian Foreign Ministry said today that Italian foreign Minister Gianfranco Fini was carefully examining Turkey´s action plan for Cyprus and that he appreciated the positive approach of the Turkish government. Italian Foreign Ministry said new proposals were crucial for settlement of Cyprus problem, reminding of the decisions taken by the European Union (EU) to end the isolation of Turkish community in Cyprus.

    [07] The Turkish electronic media broadcast that Telsim was sold to the British Vodafone

    NTV television, and other Turkish TV channels (26.01.06) broadcast as breaking news (Son Dakika) that the Turkish Competitions Committee has approved the sale of Turkish Telsim Corporation to the British Vodafone.

    The news was broadcast while the British Foreign and Commonwealth Secretary, Mr Jack Straw, was meeting the Turkish Foreign Minister in Ankara.

    In its following news bulletin NTV broadcast the following:

    According to a statement made by the Competition Committee, it was stated that the said take over, will not pave the way for the creation of domination or strengthening of the existing dominating situation.

    In order for the sale to be completed, the Telecommunication Authority should inform the Council of State of its view regarding the Exclusivity Contract and in its turn the Council of State should consider the Exclusivity Contract suitable.

    However, the final approval regarding the sale shall be given by the Savings Deposits Insurance Fund Council. (TMSF)

    The tender, regarding the sale of Telsim, realized by the TMSF was won by the world´s biggest GSM company Vodafone. Vodafone paid 4,55 billion USD to acquire the Telsim.

    Telsim which is the second largest GSM operator in Turkey holds 25% of the market share.

    [08] Forged money in the occupied area of Kyrenia

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (27.01.06) reports that the so-called police of the TRNC (occupied areas of the Republic of Cyprus) have arrested three young persons at occupied Vasilia village in Kyrenia area for having in their possession 64 forged banknotes of 50 new Turkish liras, four forged banknotes of 20 sterling pounds, one forged banknote of ten sterling pound and 200 grams of Indian cannabis.

    The three persons were taken to the Kyrenia District Court, which ordered that they should remain under custody for one day so that the investigations against them are completed.

    I/Ts.

    [09] Ankara´s breakaway regime asked the Republic of Cyprus to extent electricity supply to the occupied areas for one more week

    Turkish Cypriot daily HALKIN SESI newspaper (27.01.06) reports that the self-styled electricity authorities (Kib-Tek) in the occupied areas of the Republic of Cyprus has asked the Cyprus Electricity Authority of Cyprus to extent the electricity supply, in the first stage, for one more week.

    As the paper writes, Kib-Tek asked for this extension because the agreement made between the two parties for electricity supply is ending tomorrow and the power station near occupied Klepini village continues to suffer severe damages. It was announced that the damages will go on for a month.

    The paper writes that the daily cost for the electricity supply that the occupied areas receive from the Republic of Cyprus is up to 65 thousand pounds.

    (C/S)

    [10] Erdogan said Annan approaches the Action Plan positively. Statements after meeting Annan at Davos

    Turkish NTV television (27.01.06, 11.15 hours) broadcast that after the meeting of the Turkish Prime Minister, Recep Tayyip Erdogan with the UN Secretary-General, Kofi Annan at Davos today, Mr Erdogan said that the UN Secretary-General approached positively the Turkish proposals announced recently by Foreign Minister Mr Abdullah Gul regarding Cyprus.

    Mr Erdogan told reporters that the meeting, which lasted 40 minutes, had been very positive. Asked when the next meeting with Mr Annan will be, Mr Erdogan replied that the UN Secretary General will finish his work and call him.

    They as well approach our ten point- action plan positively. After the UN Secretary - General completes his work on the plan we shall meet again with the UN Secretary General, said Mr Erdogan adding that he did not know when and where the next meeting will be, but he noted that this would be as soon as possible.

    Mr Erdogan said that Mr Annan continues to be sensitive regarding the report on Cyprus he prepared after the 2004 referendum on the Island.

    Asked to comment on the rejection of the Turkish plan by Greece, Mr Erdogan said that this is something that they respect and argued that Turkey has secured on the issue the support of Italy and Spain. He also reminded the statement made on the same issue by the EU Commissioner for the Enlargement, Olli Rehn and Britain.

    I/Ts.

    /SK


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