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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Press and Other Media, 07-03-20

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.55/07 20.03.07

[A] NEWS ITEMS

  • [01] Talat tells the Turkish-Greek Forum Turkish members that he is working for a solution
  • [02] Soyer argues that the policies of the Greek Cypriot side have gone bankrupt
  • [03] The Commander of the Turkish occupation forces in Cyprus refused to shake hands with Ferdi Sabit Soyer
  • [04] UBP leader Tahsin Ertugruloglu: Ankara is in favour of two countries in Cyprus
  • [05] Mr Angolemli assessed the latest developments after meeting the Czech ambassador
  • [06] More on retired Brigadier General Nihat Ilhan
  • [07] Body found in burned car in the occupied areas could belong to Mesut Kafkas, who was trading with the Greek Cypriots like businessman Guzelyurtlu, who was murdered a couple of years ago
  • [08] The Minister of Education of Pakistan held contacts in the occupied areas
  • [09] Turkish diplomatic sources on Gul´s visit to Athens
  • [10] Turkish army units are being deployed along the Iranian and Iraqi borders
  • [11] Only EU leader will attend the 50th Anniversary Celebrations of the Rome Treaty to be held in Berlin
  • [12] The Turkish Foreign Ministry has not included in its list for the ECHR the judge Riza Turmen
  • [B] Commentaries, Editorials and Analysis

  • [13] Columnist in Today´s Zaman assesses the role of Turkey in the new strategic balances after Bulgaria and Romania´s EU accession

  • [A] NEWS ITEMS

    [01] Talat tells the Turkish-Greek Forum Turkish members that he is working for a solution

    Illegal BAYRAK television (19.03.07) broadcast that the Turkish Cypriot leader, Mr Mehmet Ali Talat, has pointed out that the Turkish Cypriot Side has been continuing to work towards a solution and called on the International community to take action to revive the Cyprus negotiations.

    He received Turkish members of the Turkish-Greek Forum this morning

    During the visit, Ilter Turkmen a member of the Turkish-Greek Forum briefed Mr Talat about the work of the Forum, which he said, had also discussed ways how Turkey and Greece could held to revive the Cyprus negotiations process.

    Announcing that the Forum will hold two days of discussions at the Ledra Palace, he said the aim of their visit was to get information on the latest developments concerning the Cyprus issue.

    For his part, Mr Mehmet Ali Talat pointed out that the Cyprus issue has always been on the agenda of the Turkish-Greek Forum, which he said, had important contributions to the negotiations process.

    `We maintain our position and we are working towards a solution while at the same time showing the necessary flexibility` he said, but he complained that the Greek Cypriot Side is not responding positively to the Turkish Cypriot Sides steps.

    Mr Talat explained how hard the Greek Cypriot side has been working to prevent the implementation of the Green Line Regulation, but he stressed that the Turkish Cypriot Side will continue to work towards a solution and called on the international community to take steps to revive the negotiations process.

    [02] Soyer argues that the policies of the Greek Cypriot side have gone bankrupt

    Illegal BAYRAK television (19.03.07) broadcast that the self-styled Prime Minister Ferdi Sabit Soyer speaking at a program of the BRT this morning referred the Cyprus issue. He said: The Greek Cypriot Leaders demand for a meeting with the UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon has proven the fact that the policies of the Greek Cypriot Administration which has been trying to pull the Cyprus issue into the European Union are bankrupt.

    Commenting on the Greek Cypriot Sides unilateral attempts to open a crossing at the ceasefire line at occupied Limnitis, he alleged that the Turkish Cypriot Side had contacted with the Greek Cypriot Side before the opening of a gate between the two sides.

    Explaining that discussions had taken place between the two sides for the opening of the crossing point Zodhia, he said: `We opened the Gate unilaterally after the Greek Cypriot Side had failed to take any action on the issue, but he noted that no agreement has been reached or talks held between the two sides on the opening of a new crossing at Limnitis.

    [03] The Commander of the Turkish occupation forces in Cyprus refused to shake hands with Ferdi Sabit Soyer

    Under the title Soyers hand remained extended, Turkish Cypriot daily AFRIKA newspaper (20.03.07) reports in its first page that during the dinner given in honour of the retired Brigadier General Nihat Ilhan, who came to the island after 44 years, the Commander of the Turkish occupation forces in Cyprus, Lieutenant General Hayri Kivrikoglu, refused to shake hands with the self-styled prime minister Ferdi Sabit Soyer. I do not shake hands with a prime minister who did not permit the playing of the national anthem and who did not allow the poster of Ataturk to be hung, said Kivrikoglu, who was referring to the 21st party congress of the Republican Turkish Party (CTP).

    The paper goes on and writes that the self-styled president Talat witnessed the crisis which was created. However, because he had to leave the dinner early because he was going to participate in a television programme he avoided the situation.

    (CS)

    [04] UBP leader Tahsin Ertugruloglu: Ankara is in favour of two countries in Cyprus

    Turkish Cypriot daily GUNES newspaper (20.03.07) writes that the chairman of the National Unity Party (UBP), Mr Tahsin Ertugruloglu, gave a press conference yesterday where he talked about the contacts he held last week in Ankara. Mr Ertugruloglu stated, inter alia, that Ankara is in favour of two countries in Cyprus and criticised the Republican Turkish Party, which during its Congress last weekend did not play the national anthem and did not put the posters of Ataturk at the walls. Speaking about the Gambari process, Mr Ertugruloglu stated that this process took the TRNC and the Turkish Cypriot people even back more than the Annan Plan and added that the only solution is the TRNC.

    (CS)

    [05] Mr Angolemli assessed the latest developments after meeting the Czech ambassador

    Illegal BAYRAK television (19.03.07) broadcast that the Czech Ambassador to Lefkosia, Mr Martin Vavra, has visited the Leader of the Communal Liberation Party Huseyin Angolemli.

    Speaking during the visit, the Leader of the Communal Liberation Party Huseyin Angolemli claimed that the latest developments in Cyprus are in violation of the will expressed by the Turkish Cypriot People.

    Mr Angolemli said that the aim of the Gambari Process is to separate the Cyprus issue from Turkeys EU membership process and the objective of the Direct Trade Regulation is to make the opening of Turkish ports to the Greek Cypriot traffic by establishing direct trade between North Cyprus and the EU.

    Thus, obstacles in Turkeys EU membership process will be removed, he added.

    [06] More on retired Brigadier General Nihat Ilhan

    The Turkish and Turkish Cypriot press report today (20.03.07) about the retired Brigadier General Nihat Ilhan who is visiting occupied Cyprus.

    Turkish daily HURRIYET newspaper reports under banner headlines: I have come after 44 years for the Greek Cypriot lies and writes that retired Brigadier General Nihat Ilhan, arrived in the occupied area because he was very angry of the allegations that It was the Turks who killed his wife and three children in the bathtub of his house at the Kumsal area of Nicosia during the 1963 Christmas incidents.

    The paper reports that Nihat Ilhan, had arrived in the occupied part of the Republic of Cyprus with his second wife, who is a physician and his two children from his second wife, after 44 years.

    Retired Brigadier General Nihat Ilhan said: A few years ago Costas Yennaris, a Greek Cypriot journalist, claimed that, with a view to securing Turkey´s intervention the Turkish troops committed the crime at Kumsal. Recently, the TRNC media took up this issue and published articles supporting this lie. I follow up the Cyprus issue from Turkey. I was grieved and depressed upon these allegations. Could there be such a thing? I took my second wife, my daughter and my son and came to the island after 44 years.

    Retired officer Nihat Ilhan went on and said: I had attended military celebrations and had met with three Turkish Cypriots who were wounded during the Greek Cypriot attack in 1963. I have lived those days again. Cyprus had experienced major changes. It had developed very much. However, I have noticed that Cypriot youth, think differently as regards the Cyprus problem. They do not know what kind of nation are the Greek Cypriots, and what had they done They had forgotten, but I didn´t

    Nihat Ilhan, referring to the events that he had experienced at that time, said that the then Chief of the Turkish General staff, General Cevdet Sunay, telephoned to him and urged him not to return to Ankara, because people were in rage and the fear that events similar to 6-7 September could be triggered again.

    In addition the Turkish Cypriot press covers the issue as follows:

    AFRIKA writes that the retired Brigadier General Nihat Ilhan changed his statements. Nihat Ilhan said earlier that a pregnant Greek Cypriot woman and her husband were brought to the Turkish Embassy where he was also present, but yesterday he gave a different version of the incidents. Nihat Ilhan said that he was a quest of Denktas and that he met the pregnant woman at the door of the embassy by chance. He also stated that the pregnant woman was holding another child in her arms and that they took her to Dr Kaya Bekiroglu to deliver her child.

    HALKIN SESI also refers to the visit of the retired Brigadier General Nihat Ilhan to Cyprus under the title: Do not make propaganda over my martyrs children and wife. As the paper writes Nihat Ilhan stated speaking at a press conference that nobody has the right to violate the memory of his children and wife and no one has the right to make propaganda over them. As he stated there was no need for Turkey to interfere in a massacre and his children to be killed in a conspiracy.

    Under the title Kivrikoglu: The martyrs Ilhans are the children of the TRNC people, VATAN writes that Nihat Ilhan visited the commander of the Turkish occupation forces in Cyprus Lieutenant General Hayri Kivrikoglu and stated, inter alia, that the memory of his wife and children must not be sullied.

    KIBRISLI also reports in its first page about Nihat Ilhan and writes that speaking at a press conference the retired Brigadier General called on people not to tarnish the memory of his family and not malign Turkey, accusing the country for the murders.

    Under the name Greek Cypriot Propaganda, VOLKAN writes that speaking at a press conference Nihat Ilhan evaluated the ugly allegations and the lies regarding the murders of his wife and children. As he said, inter alia, his martyred wife and children are the children of the Turkish Cypriots and that their holy memory is a trust to the TRNC people. He also stated that members of EOKA killed his family. VOLKAN also writes that Mehmet Ali Talat, in a statement to Haber Turk stated that the allegations regarding the murders of Nihat Ilhan´s family are sad and provocative. Talat who stated that everyone, including himself, knows very well about the Greek Cypriot attacks, he condemned those who want to create provocation and to bring on the agenda those ugly allegations.

    (MHY/CS)

    [07] Body found in burned car in the occupied areas could belong to Mesut Kafkas, who was trading with the Greek Cypriots like businessman Guzelyurtlu, who was murdered a couple of years ago

    Illegal BAYRAK television (19.03.07) broadcast the following:

    A charred body was discovered by police last night in a burned vehicle in the bed of a stream in the Hamitkoy plain.

    An investigation is underway to determine the identity of the body but there are suspicions that the body is that of Ahmet Mesut Kafkas who has been missing since the 22nd of February.

    Meanwhile, its been learned that the chassis number of the vehicle found is similar to that of Mr Kafkas.

    Acting in line with information it received, police discovered a charred body in a vehicle completely burned in the bed of a stream in an area between Taskent (occupied Vouno) and the International Cyprus University in the Hamitkoy (Mandres) Plain.

    The discovery of the body raised suspicions that it is that of businessmen Ahmet Mesut Kaskas who has been missing since the 22nd of February.

    Police said that the white colour Toyota was burned long ago and added that the identity of the charred body will become clear after DNA tests.

    Meanwhile, two men, Ferhat Dursun and Osman Bayir who were rearrested last night in connection with the case, appeared in Lefkosia District Court today.

    The Court ordered three days of detention for the two men.

    Mr Kafkas who left his home in Beyarmudu (Pergamos) on the 18th of February - was last seen with the two men in the Britis Sovereign Bases Area.

    The issue of the charred body found in the car of the missing Turkish Cypriot businessman reportedly last seen with two men from Turkey in the British Sovereign Base area, is covered as follows by the Turkish Cypriot press:

    KIBRIS reports in its first page that it was established that the car found at a valley in occupied Vouno village, belongs to Mesut Kafkas who has been missing since the 22nd of February. It also writes that tests will be conducted for the identification of the corpse which was found in the car. According to KIBRIS three persons who were suspects for the murder of Kafkas were put under arrest for three days again.

    KIBRISLI under the title Brutality, reports in its first page that the car of the missing Mesut Kafkas were found yesterday.

    YENI DUZEN reports in its first page about the car and the burned body found yesterday in the valley of occupied Vouno village and wonders about the identity of the body. As it writes it was made clear that the car which was found belongs to the missing Mesut Kafkas, however DNA tests must be conducted in order to ascertain whether the body belongs to Kafkas.

    VATAN reports that the burned car was found during the previous night into a canyon.

    (CS)

    [08] The Minister of Education of Pakistan held contacts in the occupied areas

    Illegal BAYRAK television (19.03.07) broadcast the following:

    The Pakistani Minister of Education Javed Ashraf Qazi is continuing his contacts in the ´Republic´.

    As part of his two day official visit to the ´Republic´, Mr Qazi met with the ´Minister of National Education and Culture´ Canan Oztoprak this morning.

    The Pakistani Minister of Education Javed Ashraf Qazi arrived in the ´TRNC´ last night for a two day visit.

    This morning, Mr Qazi met the ´Minister of National Education and Culture´ Canan Oztoprak who told reporters during the visit that the two ´countries´ could work together in the field of education.

    For his part, the Pakistani Minister pointed out that there are many Pakistani students studying in the ´TRNC´ and added that he would learn the views of these students about the education system in the ´country´ during his inspections at universities.

    As part of his contacts in the ´Republic´, Mr Qazi visited the Head of the Higher Education Board, or YODAK, Tahir Celik who informed the visiting Minister about the higher education system of the ´Republic´.

    In the afternoon, the Pakistani Minister was received by ´President´ Mehmet Ali Talat, the ´Speaker´ of the ´Republics Assembly´ Fatma Ekenoglu and ´Prime Minister´ Ferdi Sabit Soyer.

    Mr. Qazi also met the deputy-´Prime Minister - Foreign Minister´ Turgay Avci.

    Tonight, the ´Minister of National Education and Culture´ Canan Oztoprak will give a dinner in honor of the visiting Minister.

    Tomorrow, Mr Qazi will visit the Eastern Mediterranean University and have inspections in the area before leaving the ´Republic´.

    [09] Turkish diplomatic sources on Gul´s visit to Athens

    The NEW ANATOLIAN newspaper (20.03.07) reports the following:

    A visit to Athens by Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul set for month's-end at the invitation of his Greek counterpart Dora Bakoyannis has been postponed due to a scheduled military exercise between the Greek Cypriot administration and Greece, diplomatic sources told The New Anatolian yesterday.

    Although Turkish and Greek Ministry officials say that a date for the meeting hasn't been set, diplomatic sources told The New Anatolian that the three-day Toksotis military exercise, set to start next Monday, has caused unease in Ankara. According to sources, Ankara will show its response tomorrow through Gul visiting Macedonia (FYROM), a country not recognized by Greece. Macedonia received independence from the former Yugoslavia in 1991 and entered the United Nations under the name of the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia. Greece is at odds with Macedonia over the country's name, which Athens says implies territorial claims to the northern Greek province of Macedonia.

    The Toksotis exercise has not been held since 2003 as a means of building confidence between the two countries. Last year Greece and the Greek Cypriot administration conducted the Toksotis exercise on maps alone.

    Greek Defense Minister Evangelos Meimarakis insisted last month that the annual joint exercise would take place as scheduled on March 26. He also denied claims that there was ever a question of canceling the exercise. The exercise, which aims at developing coordination between the Greek Cypriot Army and the Greek Armed Forces, will also include Greek warplanes and warships.

    Ankara opposes the exercise, stating that these kinds of military manoeuvres would negatively affect peace and stability in the Eastern Mediterranean. According to sources, after the Greek side's insistence on conducting the exercise, Turkish Foreign Minister Gul decided to postpone his visit to Athens.

    Greek Foreign Minister Dora Bakoyannis stated on Monday that the postponement of Gul's visit to Athens is a decision by the Turkish side, stating there wouldn't be any positive or negative consequences.

    She stressed that each step to boost relations between Turkey and Greece is an achievement, saying there was no room for emotion in their diplomacy.

    The Turkish foreign minister was expected to discuss the situation of the Turkish minority in Greece's Western Thrace region, a dispute over oil exploration in the Mediterranean Sea, as well as the Cyprus issue and Turkey's European Union membership bid.

    An earlier visit by Gul was postponed for various reasons. Greek government spokesman Theodoros Roussopoulos had earlier said that Gul was expected to visit the Greek capital last December. But the visit was postponed, coming as the European Commission said it was recommending a partial suspension of Turkey's EU entry negotiations for failing to open its ports to EU member Greek Cyprus.

    The two top diplomats last met in New York during last fall's United Nations meeting.

    [10] Turkish army units are being deployed along the Iranian and Iraqi borders

    Turkish daily SABAH newspaper (20.03.07), reports that Turkish army units are being deployed along the Iranian and Iraqi borders and additional units are being dispatched as reinforcements.

    The paper reports that tanks, armoured carriers, helicopters and commando units are being deployed along the border.

    The paper reports that there is increasing military movement in the area following a visit a short time ago, by the Turkish Land Forces Commander General Ilker Basbug and the Commander of the Gendarmerie, General Sabahattin Isik Kosaner.

    (MHY)

    [11] Only EU leader will attend the 50th Anniversary Celebrations of the Rome Treaty to be held in Berlin

    Turkish daily SABAH newspaper (20.03.07) reports that German Chancellor and EU term president Mrs Angela Merkel, did not invite Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan to the 50th Anniversary Celebrations of the Rome Treaty to be held in Berlin between 24-25 March 2007.

    German sources said that the reason for not inviting Erdogan is that only the leaders of the 27 EU member countries were invited.

    (MHY)

    [12] The Turkish Foreign Ministry has not included in its list for the ECHR the judge Riza Turmen

    According to Turkish daily Milliyet newspaper (18.03.07), the name of Riza Turmen, the Turkish judge whose nine-year term at the ECHR will end in November, does not appear in the list of candidates the Foreign Ministry has sent to Strasbourg. Turmen did not only vote in favour of continuing the Islamic headgear ban in the case of Leyla Sahin, but he also voted in favour of closing down the Islamic Prosperity Party.

    [B] Commentaries, Editorials and Analysis

    [13] Columnist in Todays Zaman assesses the role of Turkey in the new strategic balances after Bulgaria and Romania´s EU accession

    Under the title: US Black Sea strategy has the potential to revive Ankaras concerns TODAY´S ZAMAN (20.03.07) publishes the following commentary by Lale Sariibrahimoglu:

    With the memberships of Bulgaria and Romania to NATO in 2004 and the EU in 2007, Russia's influence in the Black Sea region, the strategically crucial area connecting the Balkans with the Caucasus as well as East and Central Europe with Turkey, has declined while US influence has increased.

    It is not far from the truth to say then that the admission of these two countries into the Western bloc has altered the regional balance of power in favor of the US. Economic interests as well as security enhancement are now at stake in this energy-rich, strategically important Black Sea region.

    With the demise of the Soviet Union almost 15 years ago, Turkey has not remained the sole NATO ally among the littoral states of the Black Sea as Bulgaria and Romania joined the Western clubs whereas the Ukraine and Georgia have gradually asserted their independence.

    However, Turkey still retains its position as a major actor in the region accommodating US interests while keeping control of the strategic Bosporus and Dardanelles Straits under the 1936 Montreux Convention.

    Ankara has the best, western-oriented naval force in the region while Russia, though now deprived of ownership of Ukrainian shipyards on the Black Sea, holds one of the best naval powers and has been building a naval base at its oil cargo hub at Novorossiisk.

    The recent past has witnessed a series of talks between Turkey and the US with the former resisting Washington's demands to stage NATO-led naval exercises in the Black Sea, similar to an exercise in the Mediterranean code-named Operation Active Endeavour.

    Instead, in 2004 Turkey initiated the Black Sea Harmony operations, to which Russia joined late last year, in an attempt to deter asymmetric threats while providing all the information gathered from its operations to NATO. In the beginning, this did not satisfy the needs of the US which cannot accept any restrictions preventing it from flying its flag freely in international waters.

    However, Ankara's attempts to keep the US away from the Black Sea due to its concerns over possible infringement of the Montreux Convention have seen some success as reports coming from Washington confirm that the US has been giving support to Black Sea Harmony operations.

    The Pentagon completed late last year its first-ever comprehensive strategy for the area around the Black Sea, focusing on creating integrated regional systems for air and sea surveillance, crisis response and border security, according to the UK-based Jane's Defence Weekly (JDW) Feb. 21 issue.

    Part of the strategy is to get littoral states to engage with Turkey's Black Sea Harmony maritime security operations, which some see as a competitor to NATO's Mediterranean Operation Active Endeavour , Jane's Defence added.

    This is good news for Ankara and a success in gaining US approval for its Black Sea Harmony operations. The other good news for Ankara is the lack of US focus, at least for the time being, in fully putting its weight behind the Black Sea, despite its intentions, because the Pentagon may be too preoccupied in Iraq and Afghanistan as JDW quoted the unnamed Pentagon source.

    But once the US finds some relief from its two war fronts, it will resume paying attention to the Black Sea region, prompting a nervous reaction in Ankara. Though on the surface Turkish attempts to keep the US away from the Black Sea gives the impression that Ankara has been supporting Russia's anti-America policies, in reality the Turkish policy stems from its long-time fear that possible heavy US involvement in the Black Sea region may carry the danger of revising the 71-year-old Montreux Convention. Ankara fears that any such decision might affect its full control over the strategic straits.

    As long as Ankara accommodates both the US and Russia's interests in the Black Sea -- extremely difficult but possible -- then Turkey may continue to breathe easy for a while longer.

    EG/


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