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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Press and Other Media, 07-03-16
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From: The Republic of Cyprus Press and Information Office Server at <http://www.pio.gov.cy/>TURKISH PRESS AND OTHER MEDIA No.53/07 16.03.07
[A] NEWS ITEMS
[A] NEWS ITEMS
 The EP Conference of Presidents discussed the High Level Contact Groups reportTurkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (16.03.07), in its front page under the title We are observers in the European Parliament, reports that European Parliament party leaders discussed and adopted yesterday a report prepared by the High Level Contact Group for relations with the Turkish Cypriots. Turkish Cypriot diplomatic sources described the adoption of the report as an important development. They also said that the approval that the duties of the Contact Group will continue until 2009 is an indication that the contacts of the High-Level Contact Group with the Turkish Cypriots through-out the year was successful.
The leading page of the Turkish Cypriot daily HALKIN SES0 newspaper (16.3.07), under the title Will the Turkish language be an official language of the EU? , writes that the report prepared by the High Level Contact Group for relations with Turkish Cypriots was adopted without any amendments. During discussion, heated arguments between the parliamentary party groups broke out and while it looked positive that Turkish Cypriots would attain the status of observer at the European Parliament, there was a difference of opinion over whether Turkish should be an official language of the EU.
Turkish Cypriot daily SÖZCÜ newspaper (16.03.07), under the title They patted our backs, reports that the European Parliament party leaders discussed the report of the High-Level Contact Group, but they did not accept the proposal that Turkish Cypriot deputies attend parliamentary meetings under the status of observer.
The Turkish Cypriot weekly CYPRUS OBSERVER newspaper (16-22.03.07), under the title Cyprus still high on EU agenda, reports that one of the main topics on the agenda of the European Parliament yesterday was Cyprus. The European Parliament (EP)s Conference of Presidents debated the report prepared by the EPs High-Level Contact Group with the Turkish Cypriots and adopted it as an official document.
Moreover, ABhaber news agency (15.03.07) reported from Strasbourg that the report of the High Level Contact Group for relations with the Turkish Cypriot community in the northern part of the island has been presented and discussed in the Conference of Presidents.
Commenting on the report, Green MEP Cem Özdemir said: "As of today, the report of the High Level Contact Group has an official status. Now we have to make sure that the proposals are implemented. Three important steps must be taken in order to close the democracy gap: First, the Turkish Cypriot community must be acknowledged as part of the EU and, just as they are already represented in the Council of Europe, they should also be represented in the European Parliament. Second, the Turkish language has to be recognized as an official EU language in order to enable dialogue with the Turkish Cypriots. Third, the isolation of the north in the areas of trade, education and sports must finally end.
We welcome the recent developments in Cyprus. After the Turkish Cypriot side opened the border crossing in Nicosia in January, the Greek Cypriots have now indicated their intention for cooperation and settlement by removing the wall on their side. This good will must continue on both sides. The Greek Cypriots have to give up their unjustified blockade towards the north in terms of trade, education and sports. The absurd situation on the Turkish Cypriot side, where the police are not under the control of the elected government, but are instead under the command of the Turkish military, has to also be brought to an end. As a next step, Ankara could open its harbours and ports for products from the Greek part of the island. This would reconfirm the Turkish Cypriots' credibility as a negotiating partner.
We call upon the European Union and in particular the German EU Presidency to support the efforts for a comprehensive settlement on both sides and to end the isolation of the north as soon as possible."
 The Turkish Minister of state Babacan accused the Republic of Cyprus of preventing the solution of the Cyprus problemIllegal BAYRAK television (15.03.07) broadcast that the Turkish Minister of State - Chief Negotiator Ali Babacan has pointed out that it is the Greek Cypriot Administration (Republic of Cyprus)which does not want a solution in Cyprus.
Mr Babacan is having contacts at the European Parliament in Strasbourg.
Speaking to reporters after his contacts at the European Parliament, Mr Babacan said that the Greek Cypriot Side - which had refused the Annan Plan - doesnt want to share power with the Turkish Cypriots and accept its political equality.
He stressed that the Turkish government will continue its efforts towards finding a comprehensive solution to the problem on the island but complained that the Greek Cypriot side is running away from the negotiations table.
He also underlined the fact that the United Nations is the sole address for a solution to the Cyprus problem and said that the Greek Cypriot Administration should keep this fact always in mind.
 More on UBPs contacts in AnkaraIllegal BAYRAK television (15.03.07) reports that the leader of the main opposition National Unity Party (UBP) in occupied Cyprus, Mr Tahsin Ertugruloglu, has said that his party does not oppose the idea of a reunified Cyprus but added that for this to happen, the Greek Cypriot Side should accept the political equality of the Turkish Cypriots.
Mr Ertugruloglu who is currently in Ankara is continuing his contacts with Turkish officials.
The UBP leader, who is in the Turkish capital Ankara for a series of contacts with government officials and leaders of political parties, was speaking following his meeting with the leader of the opposition Motherland Party Erkan Mumcu.
Mr Ertugruloglu said that a settlement based on the existence of two democracies and two sovereign states can be found in Cyprus if the Greek Cypriot Side accepts the political equality of the Turkish Cypriots.
He said it was high time for the international community, following 40 years of failed attempts to find a solution, to open a new page on the Cyprus problem and to see the fact that there are two separate peoples on the island.
For his part, the leader of the Motherland Party Erkan Mumcu said that the Cyprus problem had a 500 year history and added that the issue has never been a burden for Turkey.
Noting that the Cyprus problem is a national cause for his country, he stressed that no concessions will be made on the issue.
 Soyer and Akinci on Ledra Street and Limnitis crossing-pointsTurkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (16.03.07) reports that the self-styled Prime Minister Ferdi Sabit Soyer, in a speech at the self-styled Assembly yesterday said that it is not possible to open the crossing-point at Limnitis without first determining the situation at Ledra Street crossing-point. The leader of the Peace and Democracy Movement (BDH), Mustafa Akinci, speaking at the self-styled Assembly, said that the Turkish Cypriot side should find a new policy regarding Ledra Street crossing point and should take immediately appropriate steps to the new situation after the demolition of the wall. He also said that in case the Turkish Cypriot side does not take steps, they will be described as the guilty side. He also said that it will not be right for military trucks to pass among the citizens, in case the Ledra Street crossing-point is opened. Replying to Mr Akinci, Mr Soyer said that they will create the conditions so that Ledra Street crossing-point will be a safe one.