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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Press and Other Media, 07-11-02

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] Talat sends letter to UN Secretary General in response to Greek Cypriot leader Tassos Papadopoulos“s speech at 62nd session UN General Assembly
  • [02] Talat stated that the Turkish Cypriots are not quests but one of the owners in Cyprus
  • [03] Turgay Avci held contacts with AKP in Ankara
  • [04] Serdar Denktas made statements on Radio Mayis about his meetings with Tassos Papadopoulos prior to the 2004 referendum
  • [05] Ban by the Council of ministers on meat and egg products from the free areas of Cyprus TRNC budget approved
  • [06] Reports that a mass grave must exist in the back yard of the elementary school of occupied Mia Milia
  • [07] Turkey to sign a Strategic Partnership agreement with Egypt
  • [08] Erdogan on Turkeys foreign trade
  • [B] Commentaries, Editorials and Analysis

  • [09] From the Turkish Press of 1st November 2007


    [01] Talat sends letter to UN Secretary General in response to Greek Cypriot leader Tassos Papadopoulos“s speech at 62nd session UN General Assembly

    Illegal Bayrak television (01.11.07) broadcast the following:

    President Mehmet Ali Talat has said that the Turkish Cypriot Sides latest proposals can pave the way not only for the implementation of the 8th July process, but also for the comprehensive settlement of the Cyprus problem in shortest possible time.

    The President said he was open to any alternative date that the Greek Cypriot Leader might suggest for the start of the full-fledged negotiations.

    The Presidents comments came in his letter to the UN Chief in response to the Greek Cypriot Leaders latest statement to the UN General Assembly.

    In his letter, Mr Talat complained that the Greek Cypriot Leader distorted the historical facts and realities of the island.

    In his letter, the President said: We, once again, have witnessed in the statement the distortion by the Greek Cypriot leadership of the historical facts as well as the current realities of Cyprus before the General Assembly.

    The President underlined the fact that the Cyprus issue is a political problem between the two peoples of the island and that the Cyprus problem is not a problem of invasion and occupation as the Greek Cypriot leader likes to portray.

    In his letter, the President drew attention to the fact that each consecutive year, the statements of the Greek Cypriot leader before the Assembly become more and more distant from the realities of the Cyprus problem, as well as the international efforts towards a comprehensive settlement in Cyprus.

    Referring to Mr Papadopoulos words that `efforts to solve the Cyprus problem have not been filtered through a system of values and norms of international law, he said this is a clear attempt to do away with the well-established UN parameters and the body of work for the settlement of the Cyprus problem that came into being in forty years of negotiations under the auspices of the successive Secretaries-General of the UN.

    The President said the Greek Cypriot Leader once again undermined the UN Chiefs good offices mission by continuously referring to Turkey as his counterpart in the search for a settlement in Cyprus and made no reference to the Turkish Cypriot side in this regard.

    He said that Mr Papadopoulos should be reminded by the UN that the mission of good offices of the UN Secretary-General concerns and involves the two sides in Cyprus.

    Reacting to Mr. Papadopoulos reference to the efforts for a settlement as a constitutional arrangement set up primarily on the basis of ethnic origin, he said that the Greek Cypriot leadership should be cautioned that the efforts for a settlement are aimed at establishing a new partnership on the basis of well-established UN parameters; such as political equality, equal status and bi-zonality.

    It has never been and it will never be an exercise of a constitutional arrangement through which Turkish Cypriots are to be patched up to the Republic of Cyprus and absorbed by it through osmosis, he said.

    Referring to Mr Papadopoulos complaints about the continuation of the Cyprus problem, the President reminded that the Greek Cypriot leader, after paying so much lip service to the Annan Plan before securing unilateral EU membership, had made a drastic change of policy and called on his people for a resounding no vote to the UN Comprehensive Settlement Plan in a televised address two weeks before the referenda in 2004.

    But, the President said that Mr. Papadopoulos effort to conceal the fact that he has the sole responsibility for the continuation of the Cyprus problem is not at all successful.

    Referring to the Greek Cypriot Leaders claim that the Plan had satisfied all Turkish desiderata, and that is why it was readily accepted by the Turkish side, he said `Let me remind Mr. Papadopoulos that as the former UN Secretary-General Mr. Kofi Annan put it, the Turkish Cypriots voted in favour of the Plan notwithstanding the significant sacrifices that it entailed for many of them.

    The President said it is very unfortunate that the Greek Cypriot leadership denies even the existence of the isolations and restrictions on the Turkish Cypriot people, in complete disregard of the fact that international organizations like UN, EU, Council of Europe and OIC as well as individual states have called for the lifting of the isolations.

    He said that one cannot take the Greek Cypriot side seriously when it proposes confidence building measures while at the same time it continues to block any attempt aimed at lifting the isolations.

    The President added that it is high time for the international community, particularly the UN and the EU, to act on its decisions and promises and lift the isolations of the Turkish Cypriot people without further delay.

    President Talat repeated that the lifting of the isolations is not an end in itself, but said that such a move will be conducive to a settlement by bridging the economic gap between the two sides.

    He said this will also lead to a smoother unification of the island in the event of a settlement.

    On the 8th July process, the President pointed out that the Greek Cypriot leader - who claims that he is committed to the implementation of the process- had rejected all Turkish Cypriot proposals aimed at forwarding the process.

    In his letter, the President also provided information to the UN Chief about the proposals brought to the table by the Turkish Cypriot side during the leaders meeting last September and said that the proposals can pave the way not only for the implementation of the 8th July process, but also for the comprehensive settlement of the Cyprus problem in the shortest possible time.

    He stated that he was open to any alternative date that Mr. Papadopoulos might suggest for the start of the full-fledged negotiations, but added that he preferred to reject the whole idea that there should be any time limits in the process.

    He also expressed the hope that Mr. Papadopoulos will positively respond to the package of confidence building measures prepared by the Turkish Cypriot side.

    In conclusion, President Talat reiterated the Turkish Cypriot sides firm commitment to the comprehensive settlement of the Cyprus problem under the auspices of the UN Secretary-Generals good offices mission and on the basis of the UN Settlement Plan of 31 March 2004.

    [02] Talat stated that the Turkish Cypriots are not quests but one of the owners in Cyprus

    Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris newspaper (02.11.07) reports in its first page that the Turkish Cypriot leader Mehmet Ali Talat attended yesterday the opening of the exhibition 400 Years of Heritage: Evkaf Records in Cyprus at the Istanbul Modern Arts Gallery. In his speech at the opening ceremony Mr Talat stated that The Turkish Cypriots are not quests in the island but one of the owners.

    Once they called us 400 years quests. I think that today, with the Evkaf Records exhibition, it is proved that we are not quests but at least one of the owners of Cyprus, he stated.

    The exhibition is comprised of 100 items, including records, imperial edicts and warrants and there are photographs, films and voice records that support the 400 year-old records in a three-dimensional atmosphere. Four clocks, one barometer, four carpets and clothes of local Cypriots are also on display at the exhibition. The exhibition will be open to visitors until the 30th of November.

    Yeni Duzen reports on the same issue under the title We are not quests but one of the owners.


    [03] Turgay Avci held contacts with AKP in Ankara

    Turkish Cypriot daily Star Kibris newspaper (02.11.07) reports that the self-styled minister of foreign affairs Turgay Avci visited yesterday the headquarters of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) in Turkey. Mr Avci participated in a lunch offered in his honour by the AKP deputy chairman and Istanbul MP, Egemen Bagis.

    Speaking to the journalists before the lunch, Mr Bagis stated that they follow closely the big openings of the TRNC abroad and that they are happy for their success. He said that Mr Avci will have important contacts in Ankara. Reminding that last week the ferry services between Syria and the TRNC have started, and that the TRNC citizens can make this trip using their own passports, described this development as an extremely important step. He also said that either as Turkish Government or as AKP, they will continue to support the openings of the TRNC to the world.

    On his part, Mr Avci stated that Turkeys support gives them strength and moral. As he stated, when his Freedom and Reform Party (ORP) came to power, some people said that ORP was established in order to sell the TRNC. However, he said, the most powerful and strong foreign policy of the last 30 years is being carried out now by the TRNC. As he stated, the support of Turkey as regards this foreign policy is continuing and will continue and added that the TRNC is going towards better days. The TRNC will move on together with the motherland, stronger and more secured, there is no doubt about this. The TRNC is fine and we will not take steps back but steps forward. From the time we have started our duties, we move to the future together with Turkey hand in hand, arm by arm. There is no stop, he stated.

    In addition, the paper writes that Mr Avci held a meeting with the new employees of the self-styled foreign ministry who are in Ankara during the last one and a half months for training at the Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs.


    [04] Serdar Denktas made statements on Radio Mayis about his meetings with Tassos Papadopoulos prior to the 2004 referendum

    Under the title Now you see how we were deceived, Turkish Cypriot daily Afrika newspaper (02.11.07) reports in its first page that after years, we finally learned the truth. The paper reports on the statements that Serdar Denktas made yesterday speaking to Radio Mayis.

    The paper writes: Prior to the referendum Serdar Denktas and Omer Kalyoncu held a secret meeting at Tassos Papadopoulos house and it was decided that a yes and a no to come out of the ballot box at the referendum.

    The paper argues that the aim of the 2004 referendum was not to be accepted by both sides of the island but to open the EU road for Turkey.

    Serdar Denktas asked at the last round of the negotiations at Burgenstock Mehmet Ali Talat the following: You want a referendum or a solution? Talat replied as follows: Referendum.

    The lies of Omer Kalyoncu who passed to the south and met with Tassos Papadopoulos were spread out, writes Afrika which goes on to add that Papadopoulos told Serdar Denktas that even if AKEL says yes to the referendum, the result will be a no and proposed the referendum to be postponed for two years.

    Referring to the issue also in its inside pages, Afrika writes that Mr Serdar Denktas stated that in 2003 before the referendum, he and Kalyoncu went to Papadopoulos house in Straka and held meetings with him. Mr Denktas also said that Demetris Christofias was present two times at these meetings.

    Mr Denktas went on and said that after his demand, he met with Papadopoulos one to one around 5-6 times in Burgenstock. As he said, Tassos Papadopoulos suggested that the referendum be postponed for some period so that in this period, the negotiation between the two sides to continue and after the sides come to an understanding, to prepare together a plan and to submit it to the UN Secretary-General. Mr Serdar Denktas stated that he conveyed this proposal to Mehmet Ali Talat who at the time was the self-styled prime minister. As he said, because they were afraid that there were bugs at the rooms, they were discussing the issue with Talat walking outside of the hotel in the snow. He said that he asked Talat: Do you want solution or referendum? Talat replied: The referendum must take place by all means.

    Serdar Denktas also stated that his father, Rauf Denktas, saw warmly the postponement of the referendum, however both Turkey and Talat wanted the referendum to take place as soon as possible.


    [05] Ban by theCouncil of ministers on meat and egg products from the free areas of Cyprus TRNC budget approved

    Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris newspaper (02.11.07) writes that the self-styled council of ministers has decided to forbid the imports of meat and egg products from the free areas of Cyprus. In addition the paper also writes that the self-styled council of ministers has sent to the assembly for approval the TRNC budget of the year 2008. The amount of the budget is 2, 355, 885, 252 New Turkish Lira.


    [06] Reports that a mass grave must exist in the back yard of the elementary school of occupied Mia Milia

    Turkish Cypriot daily Halkin Sesi newspaper (02.11.07) reports that a mass grave must exist in the back yard of the elementary school of occupied Mia Milia. Among the villagers there is the suspicion that a mass grave exists at the schools basketball field, writes the paper. So-called officials went to the school some days ago in order to inspect the area. In the past there was a hole in the filed which now is covered with concrete, concludes the paper.


    [07] Turkey to sign a Strategic Partnership agreement with Egypt

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (01.11.07) reports the following from Ankara:

    Another document to be signed within the framework of the Istanbul meeting will be, "Framework Agreement for Turkish- Egyptian Strategic Partnership". The goal of the document will be to flourish bilateral relations between the two leading countries of the East Mediterranean --Turkey and Egypt, to the level of strategic partnership.

    The document foresees establishment of consultation and cooperation mechanisms at the ministerial level in political, economic and cultural areas. The document also envisages close cooperation between the two parties on bilateral matters as well as regional and international matters.

    Turkish Foreign Minister Ali Babacan and Egyptian Foreign Minister Ahmed Aboul Gheit will sign the document on November 3rd.

    [08] Erdogan on Turkey“s foreign trade

    Turkish Daily News newspaper (01.11.07) reports the following:

    Turkish economy has strength and resistance to overcome possible unexpected developments, said Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan at the opening ceremony of the 10th Foreign Trade Week in Istanbul yesterday. The strong economic structure we currently have reveals also our political and diplomatic power. It should be noted that we would never hesitate using this power should the occasion arise.

    Turkey is faced with an impressive picture regarding foreign trade, said Erdogan. Turkey's total foreign trade volume, which was $73 billion when the first trade week was held, has now reached $225 billion. Hopefully out target is to reach a trade figure of $500 billion on the 100th foundation day of our Republic in 2023, said Erdogan.

    Turkey has entered an assertive, determined and down-to-earth growth process recently, said Erdogan. Our investors, producers, entrepreneurs and all actors of economy can have a better foresight now. Our foreign trade has increased almost three times, affecting our growth rates. On the other hand, stability in growth and confidence atmosphere have played role in increasing our exports.

    Trade volume with neighboring and nearby countries, which was $20 billion in 2000, reached $75 billion in 2006, said Erdogan. The efforts of bureaucrats, private sector, related ministers and non-governmental organizations have played role in the success. The active foreign policy Turkey pursued has dramatically contributed in the success, he added.

    Our mission, as the government, is to establish the proper ground and opportunities. We will remove the obstacles and open a path. Our exporters, investors, entrepreneurs will walk through that path and help Turkey earn. Foreign investors will come and invest and produce and create employment opportunities in Turkey.

    Turkish economy moves on a strong, sound and resistant ground, Erdogan said. No one at home and abroad should have a slightest doubt and hesitation concerning Turkish economy, added Erdogan. Our security exists for a strong economy. No one should have concerns about this. Likewise, strong economy exists for our security. We will or we can lay down neither of them.

    When the budget was examined 5-10 years ago, it was seen that non-interest incomes and investments halted, and many people earned a lot of money without deserving, said Erdogan. The situation is not the same now, and currently everyone is in a competition for investment, he added. Sisecam is about to initiate a noteworthy investment worth approximately $500 million in Bursa and Eskisehir. Some people may have distress. We should be in an effort to minimize these as much as we can with public spirit. However, it is not proper to say that everyone will be able to overcome distress.

    Turkey's targets concerning foreign trade are obvious, said Erdogan, adding that they are determined to hit the targets. We have used and will continue using every instrument necessary to ensure that Turkey will use its production and export potential efficiently. Public institutions, universities and all organizations related with the issue are giving the necessary support to foreign trade, of which private sector constitutes a crucial part, said Erdogan. Over 42,000 exporter companies have reached over 2,000 export items, he added.

    [B] Commentaries, Editorials and Analysis

    [09] From the Turkish Press of 1st November 2007

    Following are summaries of reports and commentaries on issues of the current political agenda of the Turkish press of 1st November 2007:

    Erdogans visit to the U.S.A.:

    In Hurriyet Ertugrul Ozkok views Prime Minister Erdogan's decision to include three to four high-ranking officers during his visit to the United States, and observes that this indicates that "the Turkish Government and the Turkish army are together in this and share the same views" regarding policy toward the PKK and the Iraqi Kurdish leadership. In his commentary, Ozkok argues that the inclusion of the officers also conveys the following message to Washington: "Words and diplomacy will not be enough for us. You must show us what you can do in connection with a military solution." The columnist points out to another change in Ankara; namely the strong language President Gul and Prime Minister Erdogan have started using against Barzani. "Consequently," Ozkok concludes, "if the US Administration does not want to become a party to the conflict between Ankara and the leaders in northern Iraq, there is only one thing it needs to do: to have the PKK completely removed from northern Iraq." Ozkok notes that due to the presence of high brass in the plane, newspapers are not being invited to take part in the visit.

    Hurriyet carries also a report on how opposition leaders Baykal and Bahceli are "lashing out" at the government's current policies toward Iraq and the United States, and how Bahceli said Erdogan should refuse to go to Washington and Bush should "come to Erdogan's feet" instead.

    Under the headline, "Final word to be said to his face," Yeni Safak publishes a front-page report which asserts that Prime Minister Erdogan is going to urge Bush at his meeting with the US president on 5 November to take action against PKK terrorism and remind him of his own remark before deploying US troops to Afghanistan and Iraq that "the terrorists there are damaging our public order."

    In an article entitled "What the PKK is betraying", Yeni Safak columnist Yasin Dogan explains in what sense the PKK has turned into a "major obstacle" to efforts to address the "Kurdish issue." He claims that the "multi-dimensional institutionalization" of the PKK through its "international affiliations, drugs and arms trade, NGO extensions, media network, and financial resources" has resulted in a situation where the PKK has started to exploit the "Kurdish issue" only as a means of maintaining its existence and has become a convenient tool used by international players for various purposes.

    In an article entitled "Forcing god to bring forward doomsday, forcing Turkey to enter a regional war", Yeni Safak columnist Ibrahim Karagul asserts that the US neo-cons and ultra-rightist groups are making a concerted effort to touch off a global war in the Middle East that would force the Messiah to return to the world. He claims that PKK terrorism is being used as part of this undertaking to involve Turkey in a war with the Kurds so that the chaos would soon spread to Iran, Pakistan, and Lebanon. He warns that Turkey will enter a vortex of conflict that will last for years unless it develops its own game plan. He also interprets the fact that Deputy Chief of the General Staff Ergin Saygun will be accompanying Prime Minister Erdogan on his visit to Washington as meaning that Ankara is trying to build psychological pressure on the Bush administration.

    A "news analysis" entitled "If PM returns empty handed from US, operation to be in November" by Lale Saribrahimoglu, quotes "an Ankara-based Western analyst" as having told this daily that a Turkish cross-border operation could be expected in mid-November "if Iraq, the Iraqi Kurds and the US fail to meet Turkish demands" regarding the PKK.

    Situation on the Turkish-Iraqi border and in Iraq:

    A report by Saliha Colak in Milliyet announces that the Turkish army is getting ready to mobilize and that the Assembly National Defence Committee agreed on several measures, including a move to raise the age limit of those to be called up in case of a war.

    Milliyet's Guneri Civaoglu refers to a second alternative scenario for a cross-border operation, according to which the Turkish Armed Forces would carry it out before the Erdogan-Bush meeting. In a commentary, the columnist brings three arguments in favor of this scenario: The first is that Turkey has the right to carry out a cross-border operation to retrieve its eight soldiers being held captive. The second is that conducting a cross-border operation after and not before the Erdogan-Bush meeting would bring the ties with the United States to a breaking point. And the third is that this is a matter of prestige for Turkey. Nevertheless, Civaoglu advises the government to refrain from such a move, because such a fait accompli against the White House would be "risky," and that Erdogan should be able to explain to Bush that saving the eight soldiers is "an issue of national honor" for Turkey.

    Dogan Heper, another Milliyet columnist in his commentary, says: "The Turkish Assembly turned down the 1 March motion, and in revenge the United States placed sacks over the heads of Turkish soldiers and officers. The United States is continuing to take its revenge by supporting the PKK. Let us hope that the next step will not be a wish to have Turkey divided and part of it seceded." Heper opines that Barzani is busy setting up the Kurdish state and "sending the PKK to hit Turkey." He then adds: "The United States is working hard, hand in hand with the PKK and Barzani." The columnist says that words are not enough to stop this game anymore. "Action is needed," he stresses, "whatever the United States says, because this is the point of no return."

    A report by Turan Yilmaz in Hurriyet supports that the Turkish Government has decided on a series of economic embargo measures against northern Iraq, the first of which will hit Barzani's income sources. This will be done by stricter bureaucratic means and by the rigorous prevention of cross-border smuggling, according to the news report.

    Sami Kohen in his commentary in Milliyet, maintains that "during the Iraq conference in Istanbul, Turkey will be focusing elsewhere, on what the United States, Iraq, and other concerned countries will be doing to end the PKK presence in northern Iraq." Actually, Kohen points out, the conference will give Ankara the opportunity to better convey its position on the conflict. Let us see, he concludes, "the decision of the leaders of the international community who will gather in Istanbul at this critical juncture."

    In an article entitled "From bars to mount Qandil", Vakit columnist Serdar Arseven asserts that "PKK extensions" monopolize a significant part of the bars and night clubs in many cities including particularly Istanbul. He claims that this situation demonstrates the Interior Ministry's good judgment in issuing a directive arranging for establishments that sell liquor to be relocated to the outskirts of cities. He also recalls how the said directive was cancelled by the State Council when certain media groups that provide "covert support" for the PKK objected to it on secularist grounds.

    In an article entitled "Tense Days", Vakit columnist Abdurrahman Dilipak asserts that an international crisis leading to the dissolution of NATO could occur if the United States does not withdraw from its current stance on northern Iraq and "continues its provocations and fait accompli policies." He also claims that Ankara has three options regarding northern Iraq, namely a hot pursuit campaign, a cross-border-operation, and the exercise of its "guarantor" rights stemming from the Ankara Treaty dated 1926, adding that a new process might start if Turkey works out an agreement with Britain regarding its guarantor status in relation to northern Iraq.

    Under the headline, "DTP's latest move angers Europe, too: Distance yourself from terrorism," Zaman runs a front-page report which outlines statements by European officials criticizing the Democratic Society Party's reference to PKK leader Abdullah Ocalan as the leader of the Kurdish people as an act of provocation and censuring the DTP for "disappointing Europe by failing to denounce PKK terrorism."

    In an article entitled "The US and the PKK", Zaman columnist Sahin Alpay dismisses claims that the United States is using the PKK as a means of subverting Turkey as a "nutty conspiracy theory" and underlines the need to "seek an answer based on critical reasoning and logic to the question of why the United States has not taken any concrete action against the PKK presence in northern Iraq to date. He proceeds to argue that in making analyses about US politics, it is important to bear in mind that "it is not possible to talk about a single United States just as it is not possible to talk about a single Turkey. Leaving aside the president and the Congress, even the Defence Department and the State Department do not share the same perspective."

    In an article entitled "Fighting among ourselves", Zaman columnist Mumtazer Turkone argues that Turkey's current policy vis-ą-vis northern Iraq is one that is based on the notion that "you should escalate a crisis if you cannot solve it." He claims that the United States and the Kurdish authorities in northern Iraq are showing an unwillingness to become a party to the stand-off, leaving Turkey with no option but to further escalate the crisis.

    In a commentary entitled "Would an embargo be the right choice?", Professor Mehmet Cagiran of Ghazi University argues that the success of an economic embargo against northern Iraq aimed at forcing Kurdish authorities to take action against the PKK would be purely fortuitous because the Kurdish administration is not a democratic authority that feels responsible toward its own people.

    In an article entitled "Turkey's critical dance with democracy", Lale Sariibrahimoglu argues that "in the absence of a convincing policy ... address[ing] the grievances of the Kurds in particular and the whole society in general, it is becoming harder for Turkey to justify to the world the necessity of a cross-border operation ... [against] the PKK ..."

    In an article entitled "Rights and wrongs in the fight against the PKK", Today's Zaman columnist Ihsan Dagi claims that "the key to success" in the fight against the PKK is to "isolate" it by "eliminat[ing] the ground on which it grows," namely "solv[ing] the Kurdish question."

    Under the headline, "Strategic ally will not listen to reason: Time for action," Milli Gazete publishes a front-page report which highlights remarks by Felicity Party, (SP), Deputy Chairman Temel Karamollaoglu asserting that Prime Minister Erdogan should respond to the United States' "open support for [PKK] terrorism" by withdrawing from the co-chairmanship of the Broader Middle East Initiative and not allowing the United States to use Turkey's airports and seaports.

    In an article entitled "The United States will go one day - You wish", Milli Gazete columnist Hasan Unal argues that it indicates a lack of an average awareness of history and inability to formulate strategic planning, to claim, as some AKP officials and President Gul do, that the United States will eventually withdraw its troops completely from Iraq so that the Iraqi Kurds will have to settle their issues with Turkey on their own. He asserts that Washington will continue to maintain a military presence in northern Iraq in order to protect the "puppet state" to be established in this region.


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