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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Press and Other Media, 07-01-10

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 <>



  • [01] The breakaway regime removes the bridge it built one year ago.
  • [02] Statements by Prime Minister Erdogan and Turkish party leaders on the removal of the bridge from the Ledra Street area.
  • [03] How the Turkish Cypriot and Turkish press cover the removal of the bridge from the Ledra Street area.
  • [04] Statements by Mehmet Ali Talat to illegal Bayrak television and YENI DUZEN newspaper.
  • [05] A protocol for educating workers and technicians will be signed between Turkey and the breakaway regime.
  • [06] EU wants to further accession talks with Turkey, Barroso says.
  • [07] ECHR orders Turkey to return property to Greek minority foundation.


    [01] The breakaway regime removes the bridge it built one year ago

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (10.01.07) reports that the bridge, which the breakaway regime has built in the area of the Ledra Street (Lokmaci) in the occupied part of Nicosia, was dismantled and removed yesterday.

    The works began at 10.30 in the morning and the bridge was not there at 20.30 last night.

    Together with local and foreign press representatives, Rasit Pertev, advisor of the Turkish Cypriot leader Talat, Asim Akansoy, director of Talats office, Cemal Bulutoglulari, self-styled mayor of the occupied part of Nicosia, Ozkan Murat, self-styled Minister of Internal Affairs, Salih Usar, self-styled Minister of Public Works and Transport, Erkut Sahali, director of the self-styled Prime Ministers office and Mark Libby, diplomat at the US embassy to Nicosia watched the demolishing of the bridge.

    The leader of the Peace and Democracy Movement, Mustafa Akinci, the Nicosia Police Director Senay Kebapci, some MPs and leaders of civilian organizations were also there.


    [02] Statements by Prime Minister Erdogan and Turkish party leaders on the removal of the bridge from the Ledra Street area

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (10.01.07) reports that in statements after the meeting of the parliamentary group of his party, the Turkish Prime Minister, Recep Tayyip Erdogan commented on the issue of the removal of the above-mentioned bridge and reminding that Turkey is a guarantor power said: Is that not a state which we recognize? Does that place not have a President of the Republic and a government? They take the final decision. And our responsibility is to respect this. The TRNC has decided.

    Furthermore, Turkish daily MILLIYET newspaper (10.01.07) reports that commenting on the issue, the leader of the Republican Peoples Party (CHP) Deniz Baykal, stated that the Ledra Street footbridge has shown that unfortunately, there is no unity of understanding between the institutions in Turkey.

    Wondering what is the purpose of having a government and what its duty is Mr Baykal said that the duty of the government is to ensure the countrys harmony and its national interests by following a policy of unity.

    Referring to the developments in the TRNC, Mr Baykal said: The government did not pay attention to the chaotic developments and prefered to remain inactive saying that you handle your affairs, bringing this way the TRNC face to face with the Office of the Chief of the General Staff.

    The paper reports also that the Chairman of the Motherland Party (ANAP), Erkan Mumcu, stated that the Foreign Ministry says: The developments in Cyprus are out of our control. The picture we reflect to the world is The Turks are up against each other. Shame.

    The Vice-President of the True Path Party (DYP), Nuzhet Kandemir, said that the governments announcement is the result of politics that lack courage, responsibility, and is dull.


    [03] How the Turkish Cypriot and Turkish press cover the removal of the bridge from the Ledra Street area

    Turkish Cypriot daily AFRIKA newspaper (10.01.07) refers to the issue of the removal of the bridge from the Ledra Street (Lokmaci) in the occupied part of Nicosia and reminds that the breakaway regime demolished the wall in the area in November 2005, built the bridge in 2006 and demolished the bridge in January 2007.

    Under the title This is how Talat ate crow, Turkish Cypriot daily VOLKAN newspaper (10.01.07) publishes two pictures: The one from a visit of Mr Talat to the occupied part of Ledra Street on 15 December 2005 when he said that the bridge would not be lifted and the other from the demolition works yesterday.

    Furthermore, Turkish Cypriot daily GUNES newspaper (10.01.07) covers the issue under the title The target is the demolition of the TRNC. It also publishes statements by the leader of the National Unity Party (UBP) who said yesterday that both the TRNC and Turkey were harmed during the developments regarding the demolition of the bridge.

    Meanwhile, Turkish Cypriot daily VATAN newspaper (10.01.07) refers to the developments under the title The bridge was demolished, but the wall of the Greek Cypriots is there.

    It also publishes a written statement issued by the self-styled Minister of Foreign Affairs, Turgay Avci, who alleged that the fact that the Greek Cypriots do not want the opening of new gates in the island is proved by the preconditions which they put forth for the opening of the Ledra Street crossing point.

    Referring to the issue, Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRISLI newspaper (10.01.07) reports that Hasan Ercakica, spokesman of the Turkish Cypriot leader Talat, reiterated that there is no application by the Greek Cypriots to the UN for the discussion of the opening of the Ledra Street crossing point. He alleged that there is a serious manipulation by the Greek Cypriot side on this issue and that this incident is a clear proof of the fact that the Greek Cypriot side does not want the improvement of relations between the two peoples.

    Turkish daily MILLIYET newspaper (10.01.07) reports on its first page about the footbridge at Ledra Street and writes that the Turkish Cypriot leader Mehmet Ali Talat, replying to the Turkish Chief of the General Staff, General Buyukan1t said: No security weakness was created and from the political point of view the Turkish side scored an advantage. The esteemed commander is away, in Ankara. I ve always been here. The struggle is a struggle of image. I know the pulse of the public opinion. I know it as good as though it is in my palm. Talat made this assessment to MILLIYET columnist Fikret Bila.

    Sefa Karahasan, MILLIYETs (10.01.07) correspondent in occupied Lefkosia reports on the work carried out yesterday for pulling down the footbridge and writes that the work started after Talat reached to an agreement with Ankara the previous day. The Permanent Undersecretary of the TRNC Presidency, Rasit Pertev, who was present during the work, stated: We have said that we would pull down the footbridge. Today we are pulling it down. On the same issue, the so-called presidential spokesman Hasan Ercakica stated that the pulling down of the footbridge is an effort started by Mehmet Ali Talat and by the Turkish side as a whole.

    Furthermore, Turkish daily HURRIYET newspaper (10.01.07) reports on the footbridges removal under the title The footbridge has gone, the wall remained, and publishes statements made by the so-called Minister of Interior Ozkan Murat, that there is no problem between them and the Turkish army in Turkey and the army in the island. Now, we must all turn our attention to the Greek Cypriot leader Tassos Papadopoulos for pulling down the wall on his side, Mr Murat said.

    Finally, Turkish daily SABAH newspaper (10.01.07) reports under the title The Wall of Shame of Papadopoulos, and publishes statements by the so-called Prime Minister Ferdi Sabit Soyer to the newspaper reporter Ozay Sendir. According to Mr Soyer, the Turkish side needs to show to the world that President Papadopoulos is the only person responsible for the existence of the wall which keeps a European capital divided.

    The paper also writes that according to the mayor of occupied Lefkosia Cemal Bulutoglulari, the footbridge removal will approximately cost 200.000 NTL.


    [04] Statements by Mehmet Ali Talat to illegal Bayrak television and YENI DUZEN newspaper

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (10.01.07) reports that in statements to illegal Bayrak televisions AKIS program, the Turkish Cypriot leader Talat said that what is expected now is for the Greek Cypriot side to demolish the wall and the gate to open.

    Referring to the precondition of the removal of the symbols which was put by President Papadopoulos for the opening of the crossing point, Talat said:

    We are those who decide what we put and where we put it in the TRNC. There is nothing to be discussed regarding the TRNC. Our symbols will remain there! Do they not exist in the South? Why do they interfere?

    Mr Talat argued that they had built the bridge thinking that it would connect the two sides and expressed his sorrow about the fact that some Turkish Cypriot civilian organizations, being harmonized with the Greek Cypriot propaganda, began to say that the construction of the bridge was a mistake.

    Mr Talat alleged that President Papadopoulos used the bridge as a pretext for not opening the crossing point and referring to the sentry of the National Guard at the ceasefire line he said that this wall of shame must be demolished now.

    Commenting on a statement by President Papadopoulos, who said that the reliability of Mr Talat has been shaken because of the recent developments, the Turkish Cypriot leader claimed:

    On the contrary, if he examines it closely, he must see that my reliability increased. He must understand better that I am his only interlocutor in solving this problem.

    Referring to his private visit to Istanbul on the occasion of the bayram (religious feast) holidays after the decision for the removal of the bridge, Mr Talat said that upon some hesitations which came from the army and civilians, he met with Prime Minister Erdogan and went to Ankara to discuss the issue with the Minister of Foreign Affairs Gul and the Chief of the General Staff, general Buyukanit. He alleged that the problem was solved during his contacts there.

    Meanwhile, under the title We have been wounded, YENIDUZEN publishes statements by Mr Talat to the papers editor-in-chief Cenk Mutluyakali regarding the Lokmaci crisis.

    Mr Talat said: While we should show that the Turkish Cypriots are those who have a say, decide and work on the Cyprus problem, we gave a contrary image. This debate has caused a wound to the Turkish side in the Cyprus cause and its dregs will remain.

    Are all these we lived a result of the army-government bickering in Turkey? I asked my interlocutors about it. Everybody rejects this. The press keeps on reiterating that there is such an image. This is a reality. Among the answers, which I received to my questions, however, I heard that this is absolutely not true. Again, I do not know the hidden side of the issue.

    Turkey intervened in the island with the guarantee and alliance treaties. The provisional article 10, on which the General Staff commented, gives legality to the existence of the Turkish army on the island with the establishment of the TRNC. This, however, does not give the authority to the Armed Forces, in spite of the Turkish Cypriot institutions. Let us not ignore the other articles of the constitution, that is, the fact that the sovereignty belongs to the people unconditionally and that the authorities of the Parliament, Assembly and the President of the Republic cannot be argued. If such a comment is made, in spite of the organs of the TRNC, then a conflict of authorities comes to the surface. Unfortunately, my statement after my meeting at the General Staff was declared to be false and I was let to fall into the position of lying.

    Asked whether or not he had demanded the demilitarization of the area of Ledra Street, he said that there will be no army in the area and that there will be only police.

    He noted: There is no army in the near area, but there is along the border. I had no such demand. The demilitarization was not discussed. The demilitarization of Nicosia came as a suggestion from other circles.

    When asked about his expectations in 2007 he said that the world must see that the Greek Cypriots are showing the elections in Turkey and the elections in the free areas of the Republic in 2008 as an excuse and imply that they will not act until 2008.

    What am I to say? If they do not want to meet, let the world see this, he said and argued that the world, which has been exerting pressures for many years on the Turkish Cypriots, must see that the Greek Cypriot people does not want a solution and exert this pressure on them.

    Noting that he is hopeful that the world will see this, Talat alleged that the world has lack of strength to act and added that if the world cannot overcome this weakness the Turkish Cypriots will continue their way.

    He noted: We will strengthen our institutions. We will strengthen our economy. We will exert any effort we can for bringing the TRNC, with all its institutions, from the legislative until the executive (power), into a modern and democratic situation.

    Replying to a question, he denied that he asked from the Turkish Cypriots who hold passports and identity cards of the Republic of Cyprus to return them and criticized the Greek Cypriots for using this fact for their own propaganda.

    If this was my passport, I would throw it to their face, I would not return it. I would throw it to the face of the authority which gave it to me, he said and added that acquiring these passports is a right which the Turkish Cypriots have.


    [05] A protocol for educating workers and technicians will be signed between Turkey and the breakaway regime

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (01.01.07) Turkish Cypriot reports that the Turkish Minister of Labour and Social Security, Murat Basesgioglu will visit the occupied areas of Cyprus tomorrow in order to participate in the ceremony of the signing of a protocol regarding the Professional Education and Employment Project, which aims at educating workers and technicians for the constructions sector of the TRNC.

    The protocol will be signed on Friday between Mr Basesgioglu and the self-styled Minster of Labour and Social Security, Sonay Adem.


    [06] EU wants to further accession talks with Turkey, Barroso says

    Turkish daily Turkish Daily News newspaper (10.01.07) published the following article by the papers correspondent Umit Enginsoy in Washington:

    European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso said on Monday that the European Union wanted progress in membership negotiations with Turkey, despite Brussels' move last month to freeze talks on some political chapters because of a dispute on Cyprus.

    I told President Bush our wish to go further with the negotiations, and also with respect to the criteria needed to be fulfilled before accession, Barroso told a news conference here after his talks with U.S. President George W. Bush at the White House.

    As I have said very often, it will be a difficult and long process, but a process to which we are very much engaged, he added.

    Barroso's remarks came after EU leaders at a December summit suspended eight out of 35 policy chapters in Turkey's EU accession negotiations, also refusing to conclude talks in any sector until Ankara opens to trade with Greek Cyprus.

    The EU wants Turkey to open its ports and airports to traffic from Greek Cyprus, a union member, but Ankara insists on the simultaneous lifting of an economic embargo on Turkish Cypriots in the North of the east Mediterranean island.

    Analysts here suggested that Barroso apparently preferred to avoid a strong statement critical of Turkey at a time when Ankara was not expected to radically change its position as the Turks gear up for two key elections later this year.

    Turkey's Parliament is due to elect a new president in the spring, and nationwide legislative elections are scheduled for November.

    In a related development, a senior U.S. official signalled diminishing U.S. influence on EU decisions on Turkey, saying that the fate of Ankara's EU membership bid depended on its own deeds and not on Washington's support.

    Turkey's EU ambitions really do lie in its own hands, Matt Bryza, deputy assistant secretary of state for European and Eurasian affairs, told a panel on Turkish-EU ties organized by the American-Turkish Council, an organization representing mainly U.S. companies doing business with Turkey.

    Ankara complains that it is subject to a campaign of discrimination by the EU, even when compared to present and past candidate nations, and that accession criteria for Turkey are being frequently changed.

    But Bryza said the EU, as the owner of the club, was de facto at liberty to apply its own rules, qualifying the situation as a fact of life.

    Washington is effectively telling Turkey, don't count on us, we can't do much for you, only you can help yourselves', said one analyst here.

    The United States wants to see Turkey inside the EU mainly for strategic security reasons and over the past 10 years has significantly contributed to the resolution of disputes between Ankara and Brussels. Its vocal backing for Turkey has sometimes drawn reactions by some EU members, most notably France. But after the EU formally decided to launch membership talks with Turkey in late 2005, the accession process has become almost exclusively an EU-Turkish matter, analysts say.

    When I go back to Brussels, some newspapers report that I pressure the European Commission. I can't pressure the EU Commission, it makes me laugh, Bryza said.

    The EU's move to suspend talks on some chapters was not so bad, he added: The EU has decided to slow down, but not stopped Turkey's EU accession. There were no ultimatums.

    Bryza also said that one U.S. goal this year would be to re-energize a U.N. process for a Cyprus solution.

    [07] ECHR orders Turkey to return property to Greek minority foundation

    Turkish daily The New Anatolian newspaper (10.01.07) reports that the European Court of Human Rights yesterday ordered Turkey to return property of a ethnic Greek charity in Istanbul seized as part of a controversial law passed in 1974.

    The ruling orders Turkey to return the property within three months or pay it compensation of 900,000 euros. Failure to comply with the ruling within the three-month deadline means that penalty interest rates will apply to the sum of the indemnity for every day of delay. The charity's board met on Tuesday to be briefed on the landmark ECHR ruling and to decide its next steps. Board members and legal experts said that deficiencies in new legislation being prepared by the Turkish government towards foundations can now be remedied via the justice system.

    This was the first ruling by the European Court of Human Rights condemning Turkey on matters concerning public benefit and charitable foundations of religious minorities. Up until now, the administrations of such foundations avoided seeking recourse to the courts, but instead placed their hopes for vindication in pressure applied by European governments on the Turkish government and Ankara's attempts to harmonize with the EU's acquis communautaire.

    The Turkish government has introduced several measures so far to solve the problem and also moved to introduce legally granted rights for non-Muslim minority foundations to acquire and dispose of real property. The Directorate General of Foundations has received applications for the registration of more than 2,000 pieces of real estate from 120 foundations.

    The Directorate General for Foundations has recently decided to restore 8 places of worship belonging to non-Muslim minorities in the cities of Balikesir, Canakkale, Edirne, Hatay and Adiyaman.


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