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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Press and Other Media, 07-03-30

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.63/07 30.03.07

[A] NEWS ITEMS

  • [01] The Turkish Prime Minister discussed the Cyprus problem with the UN Secretary General
  • [02] Statements by Hasan Ercakica on the 8th July process
  • [03] Avci meets with Daniel Fried in Washington
  • [04] Rasit Pertev held contacts in Brussels and Berlin on the Direct Trade Regulation
  • [05] The Democratic Party of Serdar Denktas will ask early elections
  • [06] Nineteen municipalities which held a demonstration yesterday called on the self-styled government to resign
  • [07] The Turkish Cypriot Chambers of Commerce and Industry will participate in the Turkish-Arab Countries Economic Forum
  • [08] Turkish Parliament Speaker Holds Contacts in Portugal. Reference to Cyprus
  • [09] Occupied Cyprus is program participating in the regional program of the Turkish Red Crescent
  • [10] Turkey´s General Buyukanit: The Annan Plan was not fair since the majority of the derogations were contrary to the EU law
  • [B] Commentaries, Editorials and Analysis

  • [11] Columnist assesses the recent failed coup attempts in Turkey

  • [A] NEWS ITEMS

    [01] The Turkish Prime Minister discussed the Cyprus problem with the UN Secretary General

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (30.03.07) reports in its first page that the Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who is currently in Riyadh for the Arab League Summit, held a meeting with the UN Secretary General of the UN Ban Ki Moon. The two men discussed various issues, among them the TRNC, writes the paper and adds that Erdogan asked from the UN Secretary General the lifting of the isolation.

    In addition illegal BAYRAK television (29.03.07) broadcast about the meeting between the Turkish Prime Minister with the United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon in the Saudi capital Riyadh. As BAYRAK broadcast, the Cyprus problem was on top of the agenda of the meeting. According to the Anatolian News Agency, the Turkish Premier expressed his countrys expectation from the United Nations to lift the unjust international isolation of the Turkish Cypriot people.

    (CS)

    [02] Statements by Hasan Ercakica on the 8th July process

    Illegal BAYRAK television (29.03.07) broadcast the following:

    The ´Greek Cypriot Administration´ is trying to maintain the non-solution of the Cyprus problem while at the same time, it continues to use Turkeys EU membership process against the Turkish Cypriot Side and Turkey says the ´Presidential Spokesperson´ Hasan Ercakica.

    In a written statement issued today, the ´Presidential Spokesman´ called on all parties concerned in the Cyprus issue that support a peaceful settlement through comprehensive negotiations, to contribute towards efforts aimed at weakening the intransigent political strategies pursued by the ´Greek Cypriot Administration´.

    In his written statement, Hasan Ercakica said that the 8 July process has been interrupted because of the Greek Cypriot Sides negative stance adding that as a result of this, the Turkish Cypriot Side was forced to re-evaluate the process.

    Adding that recent statements made by the leaders of the Greek Cypriot political parties provide clear proof highlighting the need for the Turkish Cypriot Side to review the 8 July process, he said that Tassos Papadopoulos has gone as far as openly stating that he has rejected together with Greece, all solution plans and proposals put on the negotiating table.

    The ´Presidential Spokesperson´ said that further proof to this was the statement made by the Greek Cypriot Foreign Minister Yiorgos Lillikas where he claimed that Turkey cannot become a member of the EU before the Cyprus problem is solved.

    The aim of the Greek Cypriot Side is keep the Cyprus problem unresolved and in the meantime to use Turkeys EU membership process against the Turkish side. It is impossible to ignore this fact, he said.

    Mr Ercakica said the Turkish Cypriot Sides review of the 8 July process continued and the outcome of the evaluation will be announced to all parties concerned.

    Hasan Ercakica reaffirmed that a solution to the Cyprus problem can only be possible if both sides on the island display the same political will towards a settlement.

    He added that the Turkish Cypriot Side is determined to continue working towards achieving that goal.

    [03] Avci meets with Daniel Fried in Washington

    Illegal BAYRAK television (29.03.07) broadcast the following:

    ´Deputy-Prime Minister Foreign Minister´ Turgay Avci has met the U.S. State Departments Assistant Secretary for European and Eurasian Affairs Daniel Fried in Washington.

    During the meeting which took place at Mr Frieds office yesterday, Mr Avci expressed the Turkish Cypriot ´Peoples´ expectation from Washington to take more concrete steps on the lifting of the ´international isolation´ of the Turkish Cypriot ´people´.

    According to the information from the ´Foreign Ministry´, Mr Avci welcomed the positive steps taken by the United States for the Turkish Cypriot ´people´ after the 2004 Referenda in Cyprus.

    But, he added that these were not enough for the Turkish Cypriot ´people´ who has been waiting for more concrete steps from Washington.

    The ´Foreign Minister´ pointed out that any steps to be taken by the United States will be very important as they will open the way for other countries to follow suit.

    On the Cyprus issue, Mr Avci explained that the Turkish Cypriot ´People´ had fulfilled its responsibilities towards a solution in Cyprus and pointed out that no positive results were achieved at the talks that have been going on between the ´Presidential Undersecretary´ Rasit Pertev and Tasos Tzionis- an aide to the Greek Cypriot Leader Tassos Papadopoulos because of the Greek Cypriot Sides intransigent attitude.

    Complaining that the EU has failed to honor the promises it made to the Turkish Cypriot ´people´, he said the Turkish Cypriot ´People´ which is one of the two politically equal sides in Cyprus is ready to reach a comprehensive solution based a bi-zonal order.

    [04] Rasit Pertev held contacts in Brussels and Berlin on the Direct Trade Regulation

    Turkish Cypriot daily YENI DUZEN newspaper (30.03.07) reports that the presidential undersecretary Rasit Pertev, who went to Brussels for talks on the Direct Trade Regulation, held contacts with officials of the European Commission and representatives of EU member countries.

    The paper also writes that Pertev went to Berlin yesterday and met with officials of the Foreign Ministry of the EU Term president Germany with whom he also discussed the issue of the Direct Trade Regulation. Mr Pertev returned to the occupied areas yesterday afternoon.

    (CS)

    [05] The Democratic Party of Serdar Denktas will ask for early elections

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (30.03.07) reports in its inside pages that the Democratic Party of Serdar Denktas decided to make a proposal in the assembly for the holding of early elections in occupied Cyprus. As Serdar Denktas stated, they will ask this by collecting 20 signatures from the DP and the National Unity Party.

    (CS)

    [06] Nineteen municipalities which held a demonstration yesterday called on the self-styled government to resign

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (30.03.07) reports in its first page that the fight between the government and the municipalities in occupied Cyprus is growing bigger. Nineteen municipalities which are members of the Municipalities Union protested yesterday in front of the assembly accusing the self-styled government of not having a fair and just attitude towards the sharing of the financial aid given to the municipalities. Commenting on the issue, the self-styled Prime Minister Ferdi Sabit Soyer stated that the municipalities are acting for political reasons and apologized to the public in the name of the municipalities for the demonstration held by them.

    In addition, under the title The municipalities rebelled: A Coup d etat rehearsal, Turkish Cypriot daily AFRIKA newspaper (30.03.07), writes in its first page that mayors, officials and workers of 19 municipalities, who showed devotion to the commander of the Turkish occupation forces in Cyprus Hayri Kivrikoglu, were shouting slogans such as Government resign and Sold out government during a demonstration which took place yesterday. AFRIKA writes that deputies of the Democratic Party and the National Unity Party, along with various Civil Society Organisations, supported the demonstration, where, it was observed that the Turkish and the TRNC flags were even more than the persons who participated in the demonstration. The self-styled mayor of occupied Lefkosia, Bulutoglulari, who was carried in the arms of the persons who participated in the demonstration, stated that if the problems faced by the municipalities are not be solved until Monday, an even bigger demonstration will be held.

    Turkish Cypriot daily YENI DUZEN (30.03.07) also reports about the demonstration held yesterday by the 19 municipalities and notes that even the garbage collecting vehicles of the municipalities were used and the Turkish and TRNC flags were put on them during the demonstration.

    (CS)

    [07] The Turkish Cypriot Chambers of Commerce and Industry will participate in the Turkish-Arab Countries Economic Forum

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (30.03.07) reports that a delegation of the Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Commerce and the Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Industry will participate in the first Turkish Arab Countries Economic Forum which will take place in Cesme Grand Hotel, in Izmir, Turkey.

    According to a Chambers announcement, the Turkish Minister of Energy and Natural Sources Hilmi Guler, the self-styled TRNC Ambassador in Ankara Tamer Gazioglu, the Chairman and members of the Turkish-Arab Businessmens Association, the Division Chairman of the Political Affairs of the Arab Union, the deputy Chairman of the Saudi Arabia Chamber of Trade, the Chairman of the Chamber of Industry of Halep, as well as the Ambassadors of United Arab Emirates, Algeria, Saudi Arabia, Tunisia, Yemen, Egypt, Sudan and Oman Sultanate will participate in the Forum.

    [08] Turkish Parliament Speaker Holds Contacts in Portugal. Reference to Cyprus

    ANKARA ANATOLIA news agency (29.03.07) reports the following from Lisbon: "Turkey is not a small country to be used as a tool by others for their own political interests," Turkish Parliament Speaker Bulent Arinc said on Thursday. Arinc, who is currently paying a state visit to Portugal, met members of the Portuguese Foreign and European Affairs committees.

    "Turkey has met all necessary criteria in its EU bid. However, we are extremely uneasy about some European countries' attempts to use Turkey as a tool for their own political interests. Those attempts are totally unacceptable," he said.

    "Our objective is to become full member to the EU. We are resisting to all kind of pressures. We consider some countries' insistence on Cyprus issue inappropriate," Arinc added.

    Meanwhile, Portuguese Parliamentary Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Jose Luis Arnaut said in his part that the Portuguese would continue to support Turkey. Arnaut also said that the EU should take some steps vis-ŕ-vis the progress accomplished by Turkey. He added that a stable and peaceful Turkey would further strengthen the EU.

    Turkish Parliament Speaker Bulent Arinc met Portuguese PM Jose Socrates and the leader of Portuguese main opposition Social Democrat Party, on Thursday. Early in the day, Arinc held meetings with his Portuguese counterpart Jaime Gama as well as members of the Portuguese Foreign and European Affairs committees. Arinc said that he paid this visit to let parliaments of Turkey and Portugal learn about each other more. Noting that there is not any problem in relations between Turkey and Portugal, Arinc said that the trade volume is increasing each day.

    On the other hand, Mendes said that they want to develop and strengthen the relations with Turkey in every area. Expressing pleasure over Turkey's starting entry talks with the EU, Mendes wished that this process is completed successfully. Arinc will attend a dinner which will be hosted in his honour by Portuguese Parliament Speaker Jaime Gama tonight and will be received by Portuguese President Anibal Silva tomorrow.

    [09] Occupied Cyprus is program participating in the regional program of the Turkish Red Crescent

    ANKARA ANATOLIA (A.A.) news agency (29.03.07) reports the following from Pankisi: Turkish Red Crescent Society has sent foodstuff to Chechen refugees who were sheltered in Pankisi Valley in northern Georgia. The aid was distributed to 517 Chechen families, executives said. There are nearly 10 thousand refugees, who fled from the Chechen-Russian war back in 1999.

    The Turkish Red Crescent has been regularly sending humanitarian aid to the region since Georgia gained its independence. Bilal Aldamov, one of Chechen refugees, told A.A correspondent that Chechen refugees were living in seven villages in the region under extremely difficult conditions. "Since we are all jobless, we do not have any income. Our survival depends on such humanitarian aids," he says.

    Meanwhile, a regional cooperation program has been launched under the leadership of Turkish Red Crescent and with the participation of national associations from Central Asia, Caucasus and the ´Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC)´. The five-year program aims at increasing capacities of those associations in disaster management and in their combat against tuberculosis.

    [10] Turkey´s General Buyukanit: The Annan Plan was not fair since the majority of the derogations were contrary to the EU law

    ISTANBUL MILLIYET newspaper (29.03.07) reports the following:

    It has emerged that General Staff Chief General Yasar Buyukanit, in his 16 March 2007 address at the War Academies in Istanbul, did not mention the presidential election, but did say that the military "are obliged if necessary to carry out their responsibilities" to protect the unitary state and the secular system.

    Buyukanit's 16 March speech had been closed to the press, and the text of the speech had not been shared with the public afterwards. There had been speculation that Buyukanit, in this speech, had referred to the controversy over whether or not Prime Minister [Recep] Tayyip Erdogan would become President, and might have expressed a reaction to this.

    The 25-page text of the speech, including two pages of footnotes, which Radikal has obtained, shows that the General Staff Chief indeed did not mention the presidential election at all, and in fact, as the popular expression goes, "did not even mention the 'p' in the presidency," and also did not touch upon other topics of current political debate, but did, on the other hand, convey important messages regarding strategic issues and the structure of the state, as well as on the role and responsibilities of the military.

    Subtitle: "We Are Not a Kept Military Force"

    Heading these messages were some voiced with reference to those who call for the military not to get involved in politics, and for them not to speak out even on strategic issues, and are important from the standpoint of the current debates. Buyukanit spoke as follows to the staff officer candidates, whom he addressed as "my comrades in arms":

    "I am a soldier. I have no involvement in politics, nor can I have. Security policies are now very much more my responsibility than they are of certain other individuals. To date, not a single word has come out of my mouth regarding domestic politics. But in the context of Turkey's security, it is a requirement of our office to express our thoughts and concerns, within the framework of the authorities and the responsibilities determined by the laws, especially regarding PKK terrorism and the preservation of Turkey's unitary structure and the fundamental characteristics of our state. We will continue to show our resolve in this regard henceforth as well." [...] "I want to state one thing even more clearly. We, as the TSK [Turkish Armed Forces], are just as familiar with the Constitution and the laws as are those who continually remind us of them. We have no need of such reminders. Additionally, we do not want anyone to see the Turkish Armed Forces as kept soldiers. The TSK are a constitutional institution. A soldier, when the time comes, is obliged to perform his duty. I state this openly as well." A major portion of Buyukanit's address was devoted to military/academic matters, and how a staff officer should perceive the constantly changing world.

    Subtitle: Self-Criticism on Northern Iraq

    In one of these portions, Buyukanit reminded the Academy students, whom he addressed as "my comrades in arms," of the words of [management expert] Peter Drucker that "today's problems are yesterday's solutions," and adduced as an example of this the problems that Turkey is today experiencing with the Iraqi Kurds:

    "If the solutions that we generate today are going to be reflected as problems in the future, then this is a great error. I believe that we have to accept that a good many of the problems confronting us today are in fact the incorrect solutions of the past. It is a reality that the current situation in Northern Iraq is something that we created in 1991 by drawing the 36th parallel in Iraq and supporting it. And we have no possibility of shifting onto anyone else the mistakes that we made ourselves." Later in his speech, Buyukanit explained this situation as follows:

    "The PKK comes at the head of those groups that have benefited the most from the developments in Iraq. It has become clear yet once again, with the release one by one of those arrested, that certain weak measures taken abroad have no other purpose than to camouflage the support that these countries provide to the terrorist organization. PKK terrorism is an interactive phenomenon that should not be assessed separately from the developments in the north of Iraq. Because the terrorist organization is nourished from there, and is being kept in reserve with the hope that it can be utilized when the time comes." The Cyprus issue also had a special place in the General Staff Chief's address:

    Subtitle: "The Annan Plan Was Flawed"

    General Buyukanit came out against the idea that, through the Annan Plan, a just and lasting peace would have come to Cyprus, and explained this as follows:

    "As a soldier, the attainment of a just and lasting peace on Cyprus was my greatest wish. But in speaking of a 'just and lasting peace,' what do we mean? How do we flesh out this concept? The TSK has certain concerns in this regard.

    "We cannot but ask ourselves the following question: Was the Annan Plan a just and lasting plan? The Annan Plan was not a just and lasting plan. Because the plan contained special provisions, called derogations, that were to satisfy both sides. None of these derogations were permanent.

    "If this plan had been implemented, by any Greek Cypriot citizen's applying to the courts of Europe, all of these derogations would have been eliminated in very short order. In this situation, every right that the Turkish Cypriots thought they had won would have evaporated. So not only was this plan not permanent, but it was also not just, because all the rights would have been lost." It is possible to see from these words of Buyukanit that the command echelon in Ankara breathed a sigh of relief when the Annan Plan was rejected by the Greek Cypriots in the 24 April 2004 referendum.

    Subtitle: Afghanistan and the United States

    Buyukanit also touched upon an important problem being experienced with the United States and NATO, but which is not in the public eye. Describing this problem as Turkey's taking on a counter-terrorism responsibility in Afghanistan, Buyukanit spoke as follows:

    "NATO, and in a general sense the United States, has been calling for more forces to be sent by all countries. The forces asked for would go there in order to combat terrorism. As you will recall, and as I myself had stated, we opposed this. Turkey must not go to Afghanistan for counter-terrorism. The most prestigious country in Afghanistan is Turkey. I will give you a very striking example. In the Qandahar region in particular, the soldiers of the countries engaged in combating terrorism, in order to feel safe, have been putting Turkish flags onto their sleeves. This is a fact. We reported this to the Foreign Ministry as well. Because if they engage in inappropriate activities, then, with that Turkish flag, the impression is created that the Turks have behaved in this way. Because the Afghan people have unbounded love and affection. We always tell NATO officials "assess this situation of Turkey properly; recognize its strength."

    On the same issue, Turkish daily HURRIYET newspaper (30.03.07) reports under the title, General Buyukanit: When the time comes we fulfil our duty and publishes excerpts from the speech by the Turkish Chief of the General Staff General Yasar Buyukanit, delivered on 16 March 2007 at the War Academies. The text of the speech was not given to the press and the event was closed to the press.

    The paper reports that the whole speech was 25 pages with two pages of footnotes. Following is the section related to the Annan plan:

    THE ANNAN PLAN WAS NOT FAIR; The Annan Plan was not a fair and lasting plan, because the plan included derogations in order to satisfy both sides. The majority of the derogations were contrary to the EU laws. Had this plan been realized, within a short time all these derogations would have been rendered null and void if a Greek Cypriot would have a recourse to the European Court of Human Rights. Thus all the rights thought to be gained by the Turkish Cypriots would have been lost.

    (MHY)


    [B] Commentaries, Editorials and Analysis

    [11] Columnist assesses the recent failed coup attempts in Turkey

    Turkish daily TODAY´S ZAMAN newspaper (30.03.07) publishes the following commentary under the title: Anatomy of failed coup attempts, or autopsy of a military mindset by Bulent Kenes:

    We were first going to try to take the media under control then we were going to contact [university] rectors and ensure that students would take to the streets. We were going to act together with syndicates, get posters hung around the country, contact associations and pit them against the government. We were then going to perpetrate all parts of the plan countrywide.

    This quotation is from a diary reportedly belonging to former commander of Naval Forces Adm. Özden Örnek, in which he talks about how the top commanding officers of the army were preparing the staging of a coup in 2004.

    The weekly news magazine Nokta has published another piece of journalism that will attract public attention just as it did recently with its detailed news report on the unethical efforts of the military to label some media organs and journalists as being for or against the Turkish Armed Forces (TSK) according to the content of news they publish about them. The latest issue of Nokta, which hit the shelves yesterday, sets aside 50 pages for the important parts of the retired admirals diary.

    The revelations in the diary are capable of sending cold shudders down ones spine. It divulges how, those endowed with authority and arms on account of their responsibility, saw no harm in shelving democracy for personal interests at a time when the country, long paralyzed because of instabilities, had a true hope of attaining real stability.

    As it is obvious from the diary, the coup attempt was led by the Gendarmerie commander of the time, Gen. ^ener Eruygur, who is currently the head of the Association of Kemalist Thought (ADD) as a civilian (!) and who keeps rising to public notice with his anti-democratic statements and actions against the government. Örnek mentions Eruygur in his diary as someone always longing for a military coup.

    Eruygur, who hasn t lost anything from his pro-coup identity even as a retired officer, recently declared that they would set up barricades to prevent any candidate nominated by Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoan or the Parliament from going to Çankaya in the event he or she were elected. Apparently Eruygur cannot even digest the possibility of someone, against whom he had planned to carry out a coup, democratically assuming a post which he thought he deserved.

    Saying that it was Eruygur who was provoking a coup among the commanders, Örnek wrote this about him in his diary on March 1, 2004: We met at 7:30 p.m. in the Gölba1 facilities of the Air Forces Command. The Commander of the Land Forces and I were a little tense as we were not willing to speak about the same subjects. This time I was rather harsh during the conversation because the commander of the Gendarmerie was bringing up the notorious topic again and again, and asking, When will we do it? When we told him that it was sometimes a better solution to prolong a process, he pulled a long face. To me, he only thought about his own interests, not about those of the country.

    It is understood from Örneks notes that this horrendous attempt was made by four top commanding officers of the time, despite the opposition of the then Chief of Staff Gen. Hilmi Özkök, and that their coup preparation came to naught only because they butted heads with one another just like cheap bandits revolting against their leader. And when the disagreement ran deeper they had to do away with the plan following the referenda in Cyprus on April 24, 2004.

    The idea of a military coup became an idée fixe for Eruygur, the diary says and further notes that the idea was shelved for good on March 17, 2004, despite Eruygurs efforts.

    We, the commanders, met early in the room of the division commander Unfortunately everyone said, the situation is bad; but it is unfit internally and externally for rectification through a coup& It is unbelievable but ^ener was still struggling hard to perpetrate his plan. I think it had become an obsession for him as he has wanted to become the commander of the Land Forces and as he hated the chief of General Staff... Anyways, I finally felt obliged to finish the meeting. I asked, As far as I understand, there is nothing to be done given the present conditions. We will continue our struggle within the legal boundaries, is this our deal? No one objected.

    Örnek says that Eruygur never got his coup plans out of his head and when he was left alone, this time he, unaccompanied, made another coup plan, codenamed Moonlight.

    The diary has plenty of examples as to how the commanders manipulated the Higher Education Board (YÖK), the judicial system and the media, and on the other hand, how some politicians, so-called nongovernmental organizations and members of the media provoked the soldiers. What falls to our lot in this case is to be baffled, saying, This is how these atrocities are inflicted, and to advise democracy lovers to buy a copy of Nokta and read the story in detail.

    EG/


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