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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Press and Other Media, 07-03-22

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.57/07 22.03.07

[A] NEWS ITEMS

  • [01] Reactions to the crisis created between the commander of the Turkish occupation forces in Cyprus and Ferdi Sabit Soyer continue
  • [02] Erdogan reiterates that the economic and social strengthening of the TRNC lies at the basis of the solution and peace in Cyprus
  • [03] Avci on the flights in the region of Middle East and south Mediterranean
  • [04] German tourists to spend their holidays in stolen Greek Cypriot properties
  • [05] More information on the murder of Ahmet Mesut Kafkas
  • [B] Commentaries, Editorials and Analysis

  • [06] Columnist in Todays Zaman criticizes the commanders of the occupation forces for not contributing to the policy followed by the Erdogan government towards recognition of the illegal regime
  • [07] Columnist in Todays Zaman brands the war against terrorism in Iraq as the Greatest Evil

  • [A] NEWS ITEMS

    [01] Reactions to the crisis created between the commander of the Turkish occupation forces in Cyprus and Ferdi Sabit Soyer continue

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (22.03.07) reports that the crisis created because of the fact that the commander of the Turkish occupation forces in Cyprus general Kivrikoglu refused to shake hands with the self-styled Prime Minister Soyer continues. The crisis came to the surface due to the reaction of the general to the fact that the Turkish national anthem was not played and respect was not shown for the martyrs at the congress of the Republican Turkish Party (CTP).

    Mr Soyer issued a written statement yesterday noting that under any circumstances they will continue showing the greatest fastidiousness within the framework of the constitutional democratic rules in order to protect the administrative power of those who are in their post by the will of the people, that is, the president of the republic, the TRNC assembly, the government and the political parties.

    Mr Soyer read this statement to the press before entering into the meeting of the council of ministers and then replied to questions. He said that the speculations made during the past few days cause sorrow and alleged that the TRNC, breakaway regime in the occupied part of the Republic of Cyprus, is a democratic state governed by the rule of law.

    Mr Soyer argued: We should never and in no way shadow our democracy and our position of governing ourselves. We shall never shadow the will of the people. Mr Soyer said also that CTP is a part of the people and that the party is full of members who belong to families of martyrs. He noted that they do not need lessons of nationalism or proving their nationalism and Turkishness.

    Meanwhile the Turkish Minister of Foreign Affairs was asked to comment on the issue yesterday. Mr Gul said that there is no tension between Soyer and Kivrikoglu and referred to the statements of Mr Soyer published in the press.

    A statement on the issue was made yesterday by the Platform This Country is Ours, which asked those who insulted the Turkish Cypriot people and its representatives to apologize. Meanwhile, six organizations, among which the Turkish Cypriot Peace Forces Fighters Association, the TMT Association, the National Peoples Movement (UHH) and the Association for the protection of the TRNC issued statements criticizing the CTP and Mr Soyer.

    Furthermore, Turkish Cypriot daily AFRIKA newspaper (22.03.07) refers to the issue under the front page title The commander has gone beyond the limits and notes that the reactions against general Kivrikoglu become harder every day. The paper notes that the Foreign Affairs Secretary of the New Cyprus Party (YKP), Alpay Durduran has stated that this is the time for the army to withdraw into its camps. Mr Durduran called for the annulment of temporary article 10 of the constitution of the breakaway regime.

    Finally, Turkish Cypriot daily YENI DUZEN newspaper (22.03.07) refers to the statements of Mr Soyer under the title What is essential is the people and reports that he said that the government will continue its duty because what is essential is the people and the will of the people. Furthermore, under the title He must apologize immediately, the paper publishes also the statement issued by the Platform This Country is Ours.

    (ITs)

    [02] Erdogan reiterates that the economic and social strengthening of the TRNC lies at the basis of the solution and peace in Cyprus

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (22.03.07) reports that the Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has argued that the economic and social strengthening of the TRNC lies at the basis of the solution and peace in Cyprus.

    Addressing a meeting at the Marmara Group Foundation, Mr Erdogan alleged that they are following an active policy for reaching a just and comprehensive solution in Cyprus. Mr Erdogan noted that comparing to the past the TRNC is today in a much better situation from the economic and political point of view.

    (ITs)

    [03] Avci on the flights in the region of Middle East and south Mediterranean

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (22.03.07) reports that the self-styled minister of foreign affairs of the breakaway regime, Turgay Avci alleged that south Cyprus, as he described the Republic of Cyprus, cannot control the flights in the region of Middle East and south Mediterranean in the name of the whole of the island.

    He said that after the information published in the press regarding the issue, they have undertaken some initiatives towards Eurocontrol together with Turkey which is member of the above-mentioned organization.

    He noted that upon this initiative they found out that the works which began in Larnaka Airport are only for the innovation of the traffic control centre and that no financial contribution was made for these from the budget of Eurocontrol. Therefore, the information published in the foreign press is groundless, he concluded.

    (ITs)

    [04] German tourists to spend their holidays in stolen Greek Cypriot properties

    Turkish Cypriot daily VATAN newspaper (22.03.07) reports that the first group of 200 German tourists, who visit the occupied areas of Cyprus, toured yesterday in the old part of the occupied Nicosia and saw the Buyuk Han.

    According to the paper, the self-styled minister of tourism, Enver Ozturk accompanied the German tourists. Addressing the group Mr Ozturk expressed his satisfaction with the fact that they are in the occupied areas and added that every guest visiting the occupied areas is one ambassador of peace.

    (ITs)

    [05] More information on the murder of Ahmet Mesut Kafkas

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (22.03.07) reports that the smoke screen for the murder of Ahmet Mesut Kafkas from Pergamos is being done away with. Upon a deposition of the one of the suspects, the police arrested last night a person named Yusuf Taker, who has been hiding in a house of a friend of his in occupied Famagusta. Ferhat Dursun, one of the suspects, told the police that Kafkas had been strangled at occupied Alevka area.

    The paper reports that the police examine all possibilities, in spite of the fact that at first glance it seems that the crime was committed for reasons concerning human trafficking. Invoking reliable sources, the paper notes also that two Syrians who live in Turkey are involved in the murder. It is alleged that these two persons were in the occupied areas at the day of the crime. Furthermore, reference is made to a give and take of a check of about two trillion Turkish liras.

    (ITs)


    [B] Commentaries, Editorials and Analysis

    [06] Columnist in Todays Zaman criticizes the commanders of the occupation forces for not contributing to the policy followed by the Erdogan government towards recognition of the illegal regime

    English language Todays Zaman newspaper (22.03.07) publishes the following commentary by Lale Sariibrahimoglu under the title A little bit of respect, not bullying, please:

    With the latest row which has emerged between a Turkish commander and the Turkish Cypriot leadership, one can not refrain from asking the question, who is ruling the Turkish Cypriot community, even though it has a well-functioning parliament?

    And then another question could be asked: What has the Turkish policy on Cyprus been, ever since the declaration of the Turkish Cypriot administration as a state under the name of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC)? Of course the aim was to strengthen the sovereignty of the TRNC, though this policy failed to be implemented in the past due to the ill-defined policies of Ankara.

    But at least with the ruling Justice and Development Party (AK Party), which came to power in Turkey after the elections in November 2002, there has been a genuine effort by the Turkish political leadership to have the TRNC recognized and respected in the world as a sovereign entity. There have been serious positive steps, taken not only in some European capitals but also in the Islamic world, to enable the Turkish Cypriot leadership to be taken as an interlocutor, especially as the Greek Cypriot leadership has increasingly been distancing itself from a solution which would be based on the reunification of the two communities in Cyprus -- in particular since Greek southern Cyprus was admitted to the EU in 2004 as the sole representative of the island.

    Under these circumstances it is very hard to understand why the Turkish military leadership has been playing into the hands of the Greek Cypriots by creating rows and disagreements between themselves and the Turkish Cypriot leadership. This policy of the Turkish commanders only encourages the Greek Cypriot leadership and the international community alike to weaken Turkish aims of strengthening the sovereignty of the TRNC. They instead tell the Turkish Cypriots: "Your efforts to be recognized as a sovereign entity do not match with the policies of mainland Ankara's politically powerful military. You must first convince your generals that you are a separate entity from Turkey."

    We have, unfortunately, over the past three months witnessed two separate events from the Turkish generals which serves only the interests of the Greek Cypriots, not those of the TRNC or Turkey.

    The first row between the Turkish military and the Turkish Cypriot leadership took place in January of this year over the TRNC government's decision to demolish the Lokmac1 footbridge in divided Lefkoa (Nicosia), to pave the way for the free crossing by the civilians of both communities to each others' territory. The TRNC has demolished the bridge in defiance of the Turkish military, as a goodwill gesture to the EU, to which it has been looking for the settlement of dispute on the island. Though the Greek Cypriot side also demolished their barrier early this month, the crossing could not be opened for civilian passage due to a condition imposed by the Greek Cypriots that Turkish military should first withdraw from the area.

    A Turkish diplomat speaking to me at the time said that Turkish Cypriot people feel security from the presence of the Turkish military on the island, but that they dislike the Turkish military intervening in their handling of the Cyprus problem. The second and latest incident occurred when the Turkish commander of the Turkish Cypriot Peace Forces (KTBKK), Gen. Hayri K1vr1kolu, a relative of former Turkish Chief of General Staff retired Gen. Hüseyin K1vr1kolu, refused to shake the hands of TRNC Prime Minister, and the Chairman of the ruling Republican Turks Party (CTP), Ferdi Sabit Soyer during a gathering , on the grounds that the CTP did not sing the Turkish national anthem nor hang up a poster of Turkey's founder, Atatürk, during the party's annual assembly held last Sunday.

    Instead Gen. K1vr1kolu told Soyer, "You should first prove that you're a Turk." Soyer responded to K1vr1kolu by saying that nobody could be in doubt of his Turkishness. There are no laws in the TRNC regarding the necessity of the national anthem or pictures of Atatürk at assemblies, while there had been both the TRNC and Turkish flags on the table, Soyer was quoted as saying by local media.

    "CTP annual assemblies, in the past as well as today, have always taken place with this format," Soyer recalled.

    The two latest incidents do not only show us that Turkish generals cannot learn to respect others, and instead prefer bullying civilians, but also care for neither Ankara nor Turkish Cypriot policies' of strengthening Turkish community's sovereignty, thus playing into the hands of both the Greek Cypriots and the international community.

    I advise the Turkish generals that they have to learn to respect civilians, instead of bullying them at every opportunity. Not only because this current policy of theirs does not serve their interest of creating respect for themselves among neither the Turkish nor the Turkish Cypriot societies, but above all because this policy runs counter to Turkish national interests.

    [07] Columnist in Todays Zaman brands the war against terrorism in Iraq as the Greatest Evil

    Istanbul Today's Zaman newspaper (21.03.07) publishes the following editorial by Bulent Kenes under the title "Counting Corpses in Iraq":

    Yesterday was March 20, 2007. Namely, it was the fourth anniversary of the Iraq invasion, the second phase of the plan implemented by the neocons -- the first phase was the invasion of Afghanistan -- who have been haunting the US, to give a new shape to the world order under the leadership of George W. Bush. Exactly four years ago, the invasion forces under Bush's leadership waged a war against Iraq with the promise of "democracy." Following the first missile that hit the capital of Baghdad at 3 a.m., the US forces unleashed a torrent of bombs on the country for 21 days. And on April 9, US forces entered Baghdad, bringing down Saddam Hussein's regime. Iraq was rid of a dictator; however, it met the greatest evil in its history; the relentless, inhumane and immoral invasion of an arrogant army.

    I will not here mourn Saddam, who was one of the most tyrannical dictators in the history of the world. However, I cannot help but note that I felt humiliated along with the entire Muslim world by his execution on the eve of the Muslim Feast of the Sacrifice. I felt the same way yesterday with the hanging of Taha Yassin Ramadan on the anniversary of the invasion.

    So what happened in Iraq during these four years of pain? Let me summarize: nothing in the name of goodness or humanity. Today there is not a trace of the promises of democracy behind which the occupation hid itself; neither are there the promised human rights, nor does a sense of security exist. So what is there? There is only more and more death, blood, tears, pain, ambiguity and despair. In fact, the latest polls taken in Iraq say nothing but this.

    However, in these four years humanity has lost much from its humanity! The world has become used to hearing the news of death, ferocity and massacre coming from Iraq. Now incidents in Iraq such as bomb attacks, abduction and suicide bombings attract attention only when the number of casualties exceeds 100. People all over the world lost something from their humanity with each innocent killed in Iraq. But unfortunately those who have been killed have been merely been reduced to statistics. Corpse-counting has almost become a new branch of science. Everyone is counting their and others' corpses in Iraq.

    Unfortunately, when the ferocity in Iraq was reduced to sole statistics with an average number of 70, 80, 100, 150 casualties a day, totalling over 655,000 in four years, this number has come to be perceived as an ordinary statistic, like saying that "a country's annual potato production is that many tons."

    Whereas the subject in question is more than statistics, they are 655,000 lives: 655,000 would-be lives, the hopes of 655,000 people. This means hundreds of thousands of children. Hundreds of thousands of mothers. Hundreds of thousands of fathers. Hundreds of thousands of siblings. Hundreds of thousands of older brothers and sisters. Hundreds of thousands of uncles. Hundreds of thousands of aunts. Hundreds of thousands of grandmothers. Hundreds of thousands of grandfathers. Hundreds of thousands of friends. Hundreds of thousands of neighbors and more... And the death of all the memories and hopes along with these people.

    Now stop for a second and look at yourself and your environment. Make a list of 50 of your beloved relatives and friends. Then think about the place of those people in your life, their love and the characteristics that make you yourself. And imagine now that all of them are massacred in the most ferocious manner possible in an instant without being guilty of anything. Horrendous, isn't it? However, this ferocity is experienced every single day in Iraq. Every day, dozens of brothers, sisters, mothers, fathers, uncles, aunts, grandfathers, grandmothers, friends and neighbours are brutally murdered in Iraq. What I want to say is that what is murdered every day in Iraq is not numbers but real people. Dozens of lives, dozens of hopes and hundreds of people who are indescribably grieved by each one of these deaths.

    Can what is being experienced in Iraq be understood without realizing the magnitude of this pain? Let's forget for today about the political and strategic benefits and losses of what is being done in Iraq, and let's just become human for a while. And let's share this unbearable pain in a more human way.


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