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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Press and Other Media, 06-07-10

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.130/06 08-09-10.07.06

[A] NEWS ITEMS

  • [01] Statement issued by the U.N. after the meeting between Papadopoulos and Talat under Gambari
  • [02] Statements by Talat and Soyer on the Meeting Under UN's Gambari
  • [03] The Turkish Cypriot press on the agreement reached between the two leaders in Cyprus
  • [04] Erdogan briefed the EU ambassadors on the occasion of the new EU Presidency. He availed of the opportunity to attack Cyprus
  • [05] Gul declares that the citizens of occupied Famagusta will not be allowed to return to their homes and Turkey has no intention of withdrawing its troops from Cyprus
  • [06] The RTPīs Kalyoncu speaks of a crisis in the self-styled coalition
  • [07] A plea to protect the environment in the occupied territories of the Republic of Cyprus by the British High Commissioner. Reaction to the conveyance of electricity to the occupied peninsula of Karpasia.
  • [08] Turkeyīs main opposition insists on Erdoganīs adviser financing terrorism. The issue in court
  • [09] Turkish Cypriot to recourse to the ECHR for her property in Limassol
  • [10] Claims that Greeks are buying lots of land in Turkey
  • [11] Statements by Gul after returning from Washington
  • [B] COMMENTARIES, EDITORIALS AND ANALYSIS

  • [12] How the Turkish Press assessed the Turkey-U.S. strategic vision
  • [13] The Illegal regime provides refuge to British drug fugitive Gary Robb to usurp Greek Cypriot properties

  • [A] NEWS ITEMS

    [01] Statement issued by the U.N. after the meeting between Papadopoulos and Talat under Gambari

    Illegal Bayrak television (08.07.06) broadcast that the Turkish Cypriot leader, Mr

    Mehmet Ali Talat and the Greek Cypriot leader, Mr Tasos Papadopoulos came together this afternoon at a three way meeting with the UN Undersecretary- General for Political Affair, Mr Ibrahim Gambari.

    The meeting was held at the residence of the UN Secretary-Generals Representative in Cyprus and Chief of Mission, Mr Michael Moller in the UN controlled buffer zone.

    The following statement that was issued by the UN Undersecretary-General for Political Affairs Ibrahim Gambari on behalf of the two leaders:

    Ladies and gentlemen of the press its taken us a while because there are a number of very important issues that we have discussed at this very historic occasion and I am pleased to read the following statement on behalf of the two leaders.

    After a very frank and very constructive discussion we have agreed on the following set of principles.

    1. Commitment to the reunification of Cyprus based on a bizonal, bicommunal federation and political equality as set out in the relevant Security Council resolution.

    2. Recognition of the fact that the status quo is unacceptable and that its prolongation will have negative consequences for the Turkish and Greek Cypriots.

    3. Commitment to the proposition that a comprehensive settlement would be desirable and possible and should be no further delayed.

    4. Agreement to begin the process immediately involving bicommunal discussions of issues that are felt by day to day life of the people and concurrently those that concern sensitive issues both of which will contribute to a comprehensive settlement.

    5. Commitment to assure that the right atmosphere prevails for this process to be successful. In that connection confident building measures are essential both in terms of improving the atmosphere and improving the lives of all Turkish and Greek Cypriots and also in that connection an end to be put to the so called blame game. Those are the decision by the two leaders.

    The technical committees, on issues that affect the day to day lives of people, will commence by the end of July this July provided that at the same time the two leaders will also have exchanged a list of issues of substance and its contents to be studied by expert bicommunal working groups and finalized by the leaders.

    The two leaders will meet further from time to time as appropriate to give directions to the expert bi communal working groups as well as to resume the work of the technical committees.

    [02] Statements by Talat and Soyer on the meeting under UN's Gambari

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (09.07.06) reported the following from occupied Lefkosia: United Nations Under-Secretary-General for Political Affairs Ibrahim Gambari is not departing from the island empty-handed, said President Mehmet Ali Talat of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) following his meeting with Gambari and Greek Cypriot leader Tassos Papadopoulos in buffer zone in Cyprus.

    Referring to the article which says, ''recognition of the fact that the status quo is unacceptable and that its prolongation would have negative consequences for the Turkish and Greek Cypriots'' in set of principles, Talat said that the current condition of Turkish Cypriots is unacceptable, and this article registers this.

    ''Division of the island, representation of the whole Cyprus by the Greek Cypriot administration and isolation of Turkish Cypriots are unacceptable,'' added Talat.

    Noting that they want a comprehensive solution, Talat said that the 3rd article in the set of principles covers this. (Commitment to the proposition that a comprehensive settlement is both desirable and possible, and should not be further delayed.)

    ''We have decided to end mutual accusations with Papadopoulos,'' added Talat.

    ''We will do our best to establish the appropriate milieu for a resolution. We are pleased with the result,'' noted Talat.

    Talat said: ''Consequently, Turkish Cypriots will exert efforts for a solution based on parameters of the Annan Plan as a party which is equal in political aspect.''

    Talat said that they made a phone conversation with UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan in the last stage of the meeting, Talat said that we talked about some problems and then we overcame them.

    Stressing that the technical committees issue was solved, Talat noted that they have obtained a result in a meeting which was held for the first time after 2004 referendums.

    On the other hand, TRNC Prime Minister Ferdi Sabit Soyer commented on the result of the tripartite meeting and said: ''The meeting of two leaders was a positive and sincere step.''

    Speaking to Turkish Cypriot Agency (TAK), Soyer said that the set of principles is very important. He added that accepting the article on ''recognition of the fact that the status quo is unacceptable and that its prolongation would have negative consequences for the Turkish and Greek Cypriots'' was a serious step.

    ''Commitment to the unification of Cyprus based on a bi-zonal, bi-communal federation and political equality, as set out in the relevant Security Council resolutions, was also important,'' added Soyer.

    (Tr. Note: Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus is the illegal regime set up by the Turkish Republic in occupied Northern Cyprus)

    [03] The Turkish Cypriot press on the agreement reached between the two leaders in Cyprus

    The Turkish Cypriot press reported yesterday (09.07.06) about the agreement reached between the Turkish Cypriot leader Mehmet Ali Talat and the President of the Republic of Cyprus Tassos Papadopoulos.

    KIBRIS under the title Target: Solution in 2006, writes that Talat and Papadopoulos met on Saturday after an initiative of the UN Undersecretary for Political Affairs Ibrahim Gambari and an agreement was reached in some important subjects as regards the solution of the Cyprus problem.

    Under the title New period, YENI DUZEN reports that there was a decision that there is mutual understanding between the two leaders and notes that the technical committees, on issues that affect the day to day lives of people, will commence by the end of July.

    AFRIKA publishes a picture of the two leaders under the title They came to an understanding on five subjects and writes that Papadopoulos and Talat said yes to a bi-communal, by-regional federation.

    VATAN, under the title We start again, writes about the starting of the technical committees by the end of July and publishes statements of the Turkish Cypriot leader Mehmet Ali Talat that he is pleased with the results.

    HALKIN SESI under the title Hopes emerged for talks writes that the two leaders will meet further from time to time to give directions to the working groups.

    Under the title UN period, KIBRISLI reports, inter alia, that the two leaders met yesterday with the UN Undersecretary for Political Affairs Ibrahim Gambari and announced a five-principle document as regards an agreement they have reached.

    Under the title Solution commitments by the two leaders, CUMHURIYET wonders if there is a new hope as regards the solution of the Cyprus problem.

    ORTAM under the title They came together writes about the agreement reached between Talat and Papadopoulos and notes that it was the first time following the April 2004 referendum that the two leaders met in order to consider an initiative for a solution.

    VOLKAN under the title The majority of Papadopoulos demands were accepted writes that the meeting between Talat and Papadopoulos became a reality.

    OZGUR DUSUNCE under the title Cancel the ceremonies calls on the Turkish Cypriot side to cancel the ceremonies planned as regards the 32nd anniversary for the 20th of July, if it is sincere as regards the solution.

    In addition, some papers of todays edition (10.07.06) also report about the agreement between the two leaders.

    AFRIKA under the title There is no army withdrawn and Famagusta writes that before even the ink of the agreement signed between Papadopoulos and Talat dried, Abdullah Gul has put a full stop.

    YENI DUZEN under the title The eyes on the leaders writes that the UN Secretary-Generals assistance opened the way for the launching of talks for a United Cyprus, however he left the difficulties to the two leaders.

    UNDER the title Byzantine games, CUMHURIYET refers to some statements made by President Papadopoulos to the Greek Cypriot SIMERINI newspaper and writes that Papadopoulos tries even from now to blow up the procedure.

    [04] Erdogan briefed the EU ambassadors on the occasion of the new EU Presidency. He availed of the opportunity to attack Cyprus

    Under the title: Turkey won't take unreciprocated steps for Cyprus solution

    The New Anatolian newspaper (09.07.06) reports the following:

    Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Friday complained to European Union ambassadors about the Greek Cypriots, saying that Turkey won't take steps in the Cyprus dispute unless the Greek Cypriots change their policies to move towards a solution.

    "Unilateral steps by Ankara won't lead the parties to a Cyprus solution," Erdogan said, referring to the EU's pressure on Turkey to open its airports and harbors to Greek Cypriots despite the continuing isolation of the Turkish Cypriots and the Greek Cypriot administration's unwillingness to revive the peace process.

    Erdogan made the remarks at a lunch he hosted in Ankara for the ambassadors of the states in the 25-nation bloc to mark Finland's takeover of the EU's rotating term presidency from Austria last weekend.

    Warning that the Cyprus dispute shouldn't hold back Turkey's accession process in the Union, Erdogan said, "Mixing political issues with Turkey's EU accession process makes the Union less credible. Turkey expects a more just approach from the Union regarding the Cyprus dispute."

    Calling for the simultaneous ending of Turkish Cypriot isolation with the opening of Turkish ports to Greek Cypriots as a part of confidence-building measures to reach a permanent solution on the divided island, Erdogan also stressed that a solution to the Cyprus problem should be found under the auspices of the United Nations.

    In contrast to Erdogan's statements, Finnish Ambassador to Ankara Maria Serenius called on Turkey to implement the Ankara Protocol, warning that Turkey's not fulfilling its responsibilities concerning Cyprus might have a negative affect on its EU process.

    The Ankara Protocol extends the Customs Union to the 10 new members of the EU, including Greek Cyprus, and Turkey's implementation of the protocol would lead to the opening of airports and harbors to Greek Cypriots. However, Ankara says it won't implement the agreement unless the Union keeps its promises to end the isolation of Turkish Cypriots.

    "All obstacles to free the circulation of goods and services, including the transportation obstacles, should be eliminated. The EU will evaluate the implementation of the protocol within the year," added the Finnish ambassador.

    Serenius also expressed the Union's concerns about the deficiencies of freedom of expression in Turkey and stated that the Turkish Penal Code (TCK) should be changed to bring it line with EU standards.

    Expressing concern over a possible limitation of civil liberties with the new Anti-Terror Law, Serenius urged Turkey to continue aligning its civil-military relations with EU norms.

    [05] Gul declares that the citizens of occupied Famagusta will not be allowed to return to their homes and Turkey has no intention of withdrawing its troops from Cyprus

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (09.07.06) reported the following from Tehran: Turkish Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul said: "Issues like withdrawal of (Turkish) soldiers from Cyprus or giving back Maras (occupied Famagusta) are out of question."

    Gul, who is currently in Tehran for the meeting of foreign ministers of Iraq's neighboring countries, replied to questions of reporters on Sunday.

    When recalled of news reports about withdrawal of Turkish soldiers from Cyprus and giving back Maras (occupied Famagusta) following the meeting between President Mehmet Ali Talat of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) and Greek Cypriot leader Tassos Papadopoulos, Gul said that those issues are out of question, adding: "We support Mr. Talat. I hope international community, one more time, will see how constructive the Turkish side is."

    Gul said that there are three important issues in Cyprus, that are bi-zonality, political equality and a partnership as the new structure.

    Upon questions about Iran's nuclear program, Gul said that constructive messages should be given before the G-8 meeting, and this will soften the milieu. Noting that western world, G-8 countries and 6 countries which are related with this issue support a diplomatic solution, Gul said that Iran also has the same attitude.

    Regarding Turkey-EU relations and the Customs Union Additional Protocol, Gul said that the process is functioning and responsibilities are clear.

    Noting that unfortunately the Turkish parliament could not adopt the whole of 9th adjustment package before it recessed, Gul said that he hoped works on laws would be completed before the EU Progress Report was issued.

    On Mr Gulīs statements illegal Bayrak television (09.07.06) broadcast the following:

    Turkish Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul has denied press reports that the withdrawal of Turkish troops and the issue of returning Maras (occupied Famagusta) were taken up during yesterdays meeting between President Mehmet Ali Talat and the leader of the Greek Cypriot Administration Tasos Papadopoulos.

    Answering Journalists questions in Tehran where he is attending the meeting of Foreign Ministers of countries neighboring Iraq, Mr. Gul said that the rumors which emerged in the Turkish press were false and baseless.

    He added that the issues of demilitarization and returning Maras were neither discussed at yesterdays meeting nor were there any documents produced to back up such claims.

    Reiterating Turkeys support to President Talat, the Turkish Foreign Minister expressed the hope that the international community will once more see and acknowledge how constructive the Turkish Side will be.

    Mr. Gul pointed out that the three most vital principles in any settlement framework was bi-zonality, bi-communality and the political equality of the two sides.

    [06] The RTPīs Kalyoncu speaks of a crisis in the self-styled coalition

    Illegal Bayrak television (07.07.06) broadcast the following:

    The Republican Turkish Party General Secretary Omer Kalyoncu has spoken of a `crisis within the Republican Turkish Party-Democrat Party coalition government.

    Mr Kalyoncu said that the senior partner of the coalition Republican Turkish Party does not have too much alternative for the formation of a new government but said that discussions are still going on with non-governmental organizations on the issue.

    A delegation from the `This Country is Ours Platform` paid visits to the Republican Turkish Party-United Forces and the Peace and Democracy Movement today.

    During the meetings, the delegation asked the Republican Turkish Party-United Forces and the Peace and Democracy Movement to join their forces to reach their joint targets.

    Welcoming the delegation, the CTP General Secretary Omer Kalyoncu spoke of a crisis within the current coalition government.

    Explaining that discussions between the CTP and the junior partner of the coalition Democrat Party are still going on to remove the problems being faced, Mr Kalyoncu said `discussions are still continuing but the public opinion does not look `warm` to a coalition with the Democrat Party`.

    For his part, the Leader of the Peace and Democracy Movement Mustafa Akinci has repeated his partys readiness to support a government of the Republican Turkish Party which has 25 seats in the 50 seat TRNC parliament.

    [07] A plea to protect the environment in the occupied territories of the Republic of Cyprus by the British High Commissioner. Reaction to the conveyance of electricity to the occupied peninsula of Karpasia.

    British High Commissioner Peter Millet made a plea for action to save the environment in the occupied territories of the Republic of Cyprus. Turkish Cypriot English-language weekly CYPRUS TODAY newspaper (8-14.07.06), under the title Millets plea for action, Im worried and angry, reported the following:

    British High Commissioner Peter Millet has made an impassioned plea for more to be done to protect the TRNCs fragile environment, which is under attack from overdevelopment.

    Im becoming increasingly worried and angry about the state of the environment in northern Cyprus, he said on Thursday night.

    The key message I want to put across is that protecting the environment is not an end itself it is vital for the economy here. This is the one of the last jewels remaining in the Mediterranean and if its environment is destroyed it will lose the major asset which drives tourism.

    Mr Millet was speaking at a reception on the lawn of the High Commission building in Lefkosia, to launch an independent Environmental Liaison Group.

    Stressing that the group was accountable only to its three founder members and not to the High Commission or any other authority, Mr Millet said: There are great resources of knowledge and expertise in the British community of northern Cyprus and among Turkish Cypriots. Three such people have now got together to offer their assistance in achieving improvements.

    Earlier, Mr Millet told CYPRUS TODAY that there were three main areas where he felt urgent measures were needed to protect the environment, and where the new group would be able to hold authorities, developers and others on an advisory basis. These where:

    Planning and building control. This is all about protecting the greatest asset of northern Cyprus its environment, he said. It is beginning to be destroyed by concrete. People will pay a premium to visit a place which is unspoiled, but tourism is a very competitive business and the customer has many choices of where to go.

    Raising awareness of environmental issues. This is educating people about such things as personal responsibility in caring for the environment, he said. It is about rubbish disposal and making everyone aware that they have a role to play.

    Legislation. This covers planning law and the need, for example, to produce Environmental Impact Statements before undertaking any building development. There should be real sanctions with teeth, he said, to force developers to produce such statements well in advance of starting any work.

    Moreover, Turkish Cypriot daily HALKIN SESI newspaper (10.07.06), in its front page under the title Dont give electricity supply to Karpasia peninsula!, reports that efforts are underway to transfer electricity to the Karpasia peninsulas Golden Coast where turtles lay their eggs and for illuminating the monastery of Apostolos Andreas.

    The self-styled Ministry of Tourism as well as some civil organizations reacted to this project. The self-styled Under Secretary of the Tourism Ministry, Mr Mehmet Basel, said: It is not right to convey electricity to this area, especially to the coasts where the turtles lay their eggs. No investment should be made in such an area.

    The Chairman of the Foundation for the Protection of the Environment (CEKOVA), Mr Kenan Atakol, said the conveyance of electricity to the area will mean the destruction of the environment.

    On the other hand, the self-styled Minster of Agriculture and Forestry, Mr Huseyin Oztopark, said they do not require the opinion of any governmental department to convey electricity to the occupied peninsula of Karpasia, adding that their aim is to illuminate the current installations of the Monastery of Apostolos Andreas. He concluded that that they are ready to carry out the project.

    (DPs)

    [08] Turkeyīs main opposition insists on Erdoganīs adviser financing terrorism. The issue in court

    Under the title: CHP files charges against PM's advisor for financing terror, the New Anatolian Newspaper (10.07.06) reports the following:

    The main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) on Friday filed charges against Cuneyd Zapsu, the premier's aide, for money laundering and financing terrorist groups.

    CHP Istanbul Deputy Kemal Kilicdaroglu and Konya Deputy Atilla Kart submitted charges against Zapsu and eight others to the Ankara Public Prosecutor's Office, asking for the case to be transferred to the Kartal Public Prosecutor's Office, Istanbul which deals with financial crime.

    According to the press, Zapsu is accused of involvement with international money transfers made by Yasin El Kadi, a wealthy Middle Eastern businessman, who, according to United Nations Security Council (UNSC) reports, finances terrorist groups such as al-Qaeda and Hamas.

    Recalling that a recent Finance Ministry report on Zapsu and his clandestine financial ties was sent to the legal authorities but that the file was dropped, the CHP deputies said they'll request the Justice Ministry to reopen the case. "We'll send a copy of our petition to the Foreign Ministry," added Kart.

    The deputies also underlined that Finance Minister Kemal Unakitan, accused of being behind a decision by the Public Prosecutor's Office to drop the file, was a top administrator at Al Baraka Turk, a private Turkish bank which is allegedly a base for illegal money transfers.

    They have also made accusations that three other people -- Mehmet Fatih Sarac, Mustafa Latif Topbas and Ibrahim Halit Cizmeci -- were Unakitan's business partners when he worked for the institution.

    They also said that current Turkish Savings Deposit Insurance Fund (TMSF) head Ahmet Erturk also worked for the same financial institution as Unakitan, adding that they'll ask the CHP's administration to submit an inquiry motion into ties between Erturk and Unakitan.

    Saying that the United Nations has requested all countries place provisional injunctions on the assets of people proven to be financing terror groups, the CHP's Kart said the government has issued three decrees on the issue but that they haven't been published in the Official Gazette. "By not doing so, the government acted in contravention of the UN's request so as to save Zapsu," charged Kart.

    He went on to claim that the government, and in particular the finance minister, have tried to block investigations into money laundering and illegal international money transfers because they had clandestine ties with those accused of committing these crimes.

    "I hereby contend that the finance minister illegally interfered in the legal process to have the probe cancelled from personal and political concerns. He tried to stop the process to avoid his illegal relations being made public," said Kart.

    The deputies also recalled that the UN Security Council (UNSC) has proposed Wael H. Julaiden, a Saudi businessman denounced by the CHP, be included in the list of terror financiers. Julaiden is accused of financing al-Qaeda.

    Kart said that reports revealing that Sarac and Topbas, current shareholders of the Bim supermarket chain formerly owned by the Zapsu family, have business relations with El Kadi and Julaiden.

    [09] Turkish Cypriot to recourse to the ECHR for her property in Limassol

    Turkish daily SABAH newspaper (10.07.06) reports that Mrs. Perican Bayar, a Turkish Cypriot from Limassol is getting ready to recourse to the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) for her property left in Limassol. In her recourse Mrs. Bayar will demand 2 Million Euro pecuniary for material losses and 750 thousands Euro for non-material damages for her 22 donums of land and 15 shops she had left in the South Cyprus after 1974.

    Mrs. Bayar, 50 years old, who is currently living in Ankara ,Turkey, said that in 1974 they had left everything in South Cyprus and crossed into the occupied area in North. She claimed that her father was killed by the Greek Cypriots.

    The paper reports that Mrs. Bayar decided to recourse to the ECHR after the Loizidou case concluded in the ECHR.

    (MHY)

    [10] Claims that Greeks are buying lots of land in Turkey

    Turkish daily MILLIYET newspaper (10.07.06) reports that the paper carried out an investigation as regards the allegation made by Rahsan Ecevit, wife of Bulent Ecevit, that Greeks, Syrians, Jews and British are buying huge areas of land in Thrace, Hatay, South and South East Anatolia and thus Turkey is being sold away. The paper found out that as of 7 July 2006, 56.953 immovable properties were sold to 61.893 foreigners. The total area of the immovable property sold to the foreigners amounts to 178 million 702 thousand square meters

    The paper reports that in order to find the exact number of foreigners who acquired immovable property in Turkey a commission was established, members of which came from the Finance Ministry, the National Intelligence Organization (MIT), the Security General Directorate the Treasury Department, the Lands and Surveys General Directorate, and National property General Directorate. After detailed investigation the Commission prepared a report and published it on 7 July 2006.

    In the report it is mentioned that the amount of immovable property bought by Greeks are 12.535, by Germans 12.053, by British 6.983, Syrians 4.607, Dutch 1.833 and the total by other countries amounts to 9.901.

    (MHY)

    [11] Statements by Gul after returning from Washington

    Illegal Bayrak television (07.07.06) broadcast the following:

    Turkish Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul has said that his contacts in Washington had been very useful in explaining the Turkish Sides position in support of all kinds of contacts aimed at brining a comprehensive solution to the Cyprus problem.

    Mr Gul was speaking to reporters at Ankara Esenboga Airport on his return from the United States.

    Earlier, he expressed the hope that a solution will be brought to the Cyprus problem as the UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan and Turkey are working hard on the issue.

    Speaking on his return from the United States, Turkish Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul stated that the Turkish Cypriot side courageously, constructively and self-confidently continues its efforts to provide a comprehensive solution to the Cyprus problem.

    Referring to his contacts in Washington, Mr Gul said he was pleased to see that the Turkish sides policy on the Cyprus issue was well understood.


    [B] COMMENTARIES, EDITORIALS AND ANALYSIS

    [12] How the Turkish Press assessed the Turkey-U.S. strategic vision

    In a joint news conference in Washington on 5 July, Turkish Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul and U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice announced that they have agreed on a shared vision document between Turkey and the United States.

    Following is a summary of how the Turkish press assessed this development:

    Columnist Cengiz Candar of Istanbul Bugun, (05.07.06) argued that there is no reason to attach "special significance" to the "shared vision" document expected to be signed between the United States and Ankara during Foreign Minister Gul's visit to the US capital, claiming that "even the need" for a "shared vision" document aimed at "advancing" Turkish-US relations constitutes proof that bilateral relations have sustained serious damage ever since the beginning of the Iraq war. He also agreed that it is not in Turkey's interests to continuously counter the policies of "the sole superpower of the world" and in this sense the said document is a positive step from Ankara's viewpoint toward "harmonizing" relations with Washington.

    In an article entitled "A Strategic Illusion Document" in Istanbul Milli Gazete (07.07.06) columnist Afet Ilgaz claimed that the "shared vision" document aimed at advancing Turkish-US relations does not have any binding force in legal, political, or military terms because it does not bear the signatures of the Turkish and US sides.

    Another commentary entitled "What Powerful Friendship Are They Talking About?" Milli Gazete (07.07.06) by columnist Abdulkadir Ozkan criticized the "shared vision" document as a ploy to deceive Turkey into "submitting to US demands." Ozkan asked whether Gul and Rice really believe that there are strong ties of friendship between Turkey and the United States and whether a basis of trust between the two countries could ever be set up as long a s the United States allows the PKK to use northern Iraq as a base.

    In a column in Milliyet (07.07.06) Derya Sazak stressed that what draws attention is that the United States seems to have decided to maintain its relations with Turkey through Rice and Gul because of the distance it maintains from Prime Minister Erdogan. Most of the areas of cooperation actually represent targets, which do not go beyond Turkey's confirmation of the "US vision," Sazak argued, adding: We should not deceive ourselves. There is no "strategic partnership" since the rejection of the government motion by the parliament on 1 March 2003. We could only speak about a document reflecting "half-hearted cooperation for the sake of keeping up appearances rather than a common vision.

    Commenting on on the Strategic Vision Document in Istanbul Hurriyet (07/07/06), Ferai Tinc expressed the view that the two sides may not be able to have a common vision on developments in various parts of the world. With regard to regular meetings between the political planning groups of the two sides, she noted: Nothing can be said about that as long as the talks are between equal forces and based on reciprocity.

    Writing in Istanbul Cumhuriyet, (07.07.06) Mustafa Balbay criticized the Strategic Vision Document. In his column entitled "The US-AKP Strategic Vision Document," Balbay argued that the document creates the impression that it reflects the relations between the United States and the AKP, rather than the relations between the United States and Turkey.

    Milliyet (08.07.06) publishes an article by Melih Asik who questioned the benefits of the newly announced Strategic Vision Document for Turkey. Stating that the document favors the lifting of the embargoes imposed on the Turkish Cypriots, Asik suggested that this is devoid of any substance because these embargoes will be lifted anyway "when Ankara recognizes the Greek Cypriots and Greek Cypriot sovereignty reigns on the island."

    Columnist Semih Idiz, also writing in Milliyet (08.07.06), maintained that the Vision Document is condemned to remain unfulfilled unless Washington takes a step with regard to the PKK. Idiz said that the document may not be one of "capitulation," but it certainly is not substantive. Idiz explained that this document "is not binding in the legal sense," and is more like a "declaration of intent." What is important for us in the Strategic Vision Document is its reference to the PKK issue and the need to lift the embargoes on the Turkish Cypriots. Idiz concluded: "The main factor that will determine whether this document is devoid of substance is the steps that Washington will take on these two subjects in the coming months. In my opinion, this will show whether the relations are truly 'strategic.'"

    Commenting on the subject in Milliyet (08.07.06) Sami Kohen said that "in practice" the document does not introduce anything new. The only important novelty in the document, Kohen argued, pertains to "the establishment of a mechanism for continuous dialogue and consultation." Kohen stated that the real "spirit" of the document is that it brings a new concept of "partnership." He said that the sides found it necessary to place the damaged relations back on track based on new principles. They sought to document this even if the document itself is not an actual "agreement." Pointing out that there will be those who will criticize the document and underline its failings, it must not be forgotten that this is merely a "framework" for coordinating positions between the two countries. According to Kohen, Turkish foreign policy on many of the issues cited in the document is aligned with that of the United States, and this should not be viewed as a consequence of "capitulation." Kohen added that the expressions in the document concerning Cyprus and the PKK "should not remain on paper."

    Finally, Umit Enginsoy reported the following from Washington in Turkish Daily News (09.07.06): "Gul's visit and its ostensibly positive symbolism have disguised a lack of real progress on concrete problems. More importantly, the State Department's warm attitude toward the AKP government is not shared by some other key US agencies, most notably the Pentagon." Enginsoy argued that "Rice's warm reception at a time of a heated debate over secularism in Turkey, her public praise of Turkey's Middle East diplomacy and the release of a shared strategic vision document between Turkey and the United States came as a boost for the Justice and Development Party (AKP) government, but a closer look reveals the visit was mostly symbolic and without tangible results."

    [13] The Illegal regime provides refuge to British drug fugitive Gary Robb to usurp Greek Cypriot properties

    Turkish Cypriot daily AFRIKA newspaper (09.07.06) reports under banner headlines in its front page under the title Document of Shame and discloses the secret letter sent to British drug fugitive Garry Robb in which the so-called council of ministers promised immunity to Robb if he returns from Thailand and resumes his construction bussines in the occupied area.

    The document, the content of which was agreed on 22 February 2006 during the self-styled Council of Ministers meeting is a document in which fugitive Garry Robb is asked to return to the occupied area and resume his illegal construction business. Under the AGA construction company, which is involved in building houses and hotels on the property belonging to the Greek Cypriots who were forced to leave their property in 1974 under the force of arms during the Turkish invasion and occupation.

    The so-called Council of Mininisters had authorized Serdar Denktas, the self-styled Foreign Minister in the occupied territories of the Republic of Cyprus, to sign and convey the document to Robb.

    In the document the so-called Council of Ministers promises to Robb to return his TRNC citizenship which was nullified. It also promises to set free Robbs money blocked in the TRNC banks and allow him to use the money under the supervision of the so-called TRNC Central Bank. Among the promises made to Robb there are also opening of VIP lounge to him upon arrival to the occupied Tymbou Airport, and for security reasons a guard would be provided to him. The document further urges Robb again for security reasons to stay in a hotel and not in his house. All the charges including money laundering brought against Robb were dismissed.

    Moreover, the main editorial in AFRIKA daily in its letter from Afrika column strongly criticizes the self-styled regime and warns the Turkish Cypriots to be careful about their leaders that they had voted for.

    MHY

    EG/


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