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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Press and Other Media, 08-02-28
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From: The Republic of Cyprus Press and Information Office Server at <http://www.pio.gov.cy/>TURKISH PRESS AND OTHER MEDIA No. 42/08 28.02.08
[B] Commentaries, Editorials and Analysis
[A] NEWS ITEMS
 Statements by Talat on the Cyprus problem; Comprehensive talks may start in AprilIllegal Bayrak television (27.02.08) broadcast the following:
President Mehmet Ali Talat has said that comprehensive negotiations on the Cyprus Problem could start after April.
President Talat also underlined the need to solve the Cyprus Problem before the end of 2008.
The President was speaking with a group of reporters on the Akis program, broadcast on BRTs first channel last night.
Speaking on the program, the President said that it was possible for the UN Secretary-General to take on a new initiative on the Cyprus Problem in line with a report to be prepared by a UN mission expected to arrive on the island next month.
Stating that the new partnership state that would emerge after a possible solution would be a virgin birth, the President warned that a failure to establish a new partnership state would result in the assimilation of the Turkish Cypriot people into the Greek Cypriot State.
Explaining that he had not yet found a chance to exchange views with the newly elected Greek Cypriot leader Dimitris Christofias and therefore had no knowledge of his policies on the Cyprus Issue, the President said that the best thing to do was to give Mr Christofias time to determine his policies.
Pointing out that the Turkish Cypriot Sides polices on the Cyprus Issue were clear and that the Annan Plan would be a fundamental reference during the talks, President Talat said that the international isolations on the Turkish Cypriot people could only be completely removed following a comprehensive settlement on the island.
In any case it is our absolute desire for the isolations to be removed he said, adding that this was something the Turkish Cypriot Side wished independent of a solution.
The President pointed out that such a move would serve to build mutual trust between the two communities.
The President also added that it was out of the question for Turkey to open its ports to Greek Cypriot registered vessels before the removal of the international isolations on north Cyprus.
On the same issue, Ankara Anatolia news agency (27.02.08) reported from occupied Lefkosia:
President Mehmet Ali Talat of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) said on Wednesday that comprehensive talks may start in April in Cyprus in case the United Nations (UN) takes the initiative.
Responding to the questions of reporters in a tv program, Talat said a UN preparation team would arrive in the island at the end of March. He said the team would give information to U.N. Secretary-General and U.N. Security Council after the visit.
Talat said Annan Plan would be fundamental reference during the talks, reiterating that division in the island would be permanent in case a solution can not be found.
Responding to another question, Talat said European Union (EU) was a cooperation mechanism and was not the guarantor of anybody. He underscored that the EU would not be the guarantor of them.
Talat said even if Turkish and Greek Cypriot parties agree to alter guarantee and alliance agreement, approval of Turkey, Greece and Britain was needed.
 Statements by the British High Commission on the Cyprus problemIllegal Bayrak television (27.02.08) broadcast the following:
The British High Commissioner Peter Millet has stressed that the new solution process in Cyprus creates the opportunity for a good progress towards the reunification of the island.
In a press conference today, Mr Millet underlined the need for the two leaders of the island to adopt an open-minded and flexible approach while working towards a solution.
Reminding that the newly-elected Greek Cypriot Leader Dimitris Christofias has expressed his commitment towards establishing dialogue with the Turkish Cypriot side, Mr Millet said he believes that the Turkish Cypriot side will respond to this initiative positively.
Highlighting the importance of dialogue between the two sides, Millet said that the Cyprus problem is owned by Cypriots and it is up to Cypriots to solve the problem while the United Nations will be facilitating efforts aimed at a settlement.
He added that UK, as a guarantor power, is ready to provide support to all peaceful efforts on the island.
Speaking of benefits of a solution in Cyprus, the British High Commissioner stated that economic development, political stability and the full EU membership of Cyprus will be the big prizes of a solution.
Continuing division of the island is of no benefit to anyone, he added.Peter Millet went on to say that the 8th July Agreement is a very good framework and tool that can be used for a settlement as it underlines the need for establishing a bi-communal, bi-zonal federal state with two constituent states having one common external voice.
Also touching upon the pessimism among people, Mr Millet that said the opening of the Lokmaci Barricade (Ledra street) can play a significant role in developing trust between the two peoples of the island and expressed the hope that this can take place in March.
Stating that core issues of the Cyprus problem are still going to create some difficulties in the negotiations process, the Commissioner said without dialogue you dont have compromise, and without compromise you dont have agreement.
 Tahsin Ertugruloglu, said that the results of the election in the Republic of Cyprus will not bring any openingsTurkish daily Kibris newspaper (28.02.08) reports that Tahsin Ertugruloglu, the chairman of the National Unity Party (UBP) stated that the results of the election in south Cyprus (as he called the Republic of Cyprus) will not bring any openings. Mr Ertugruloglu who was making statements to the Ankara Anatolia news agency, stated that he does not find realistic the expectations that a new era will start at the island, created after the victory of Demetris Christofias at the presidential election. He said that he does not share the view that the power and the influence of the Church have been limited. As he said the Church, which does not recognize the presence of the Turkish Cypriots in the island, still plays the most influence role. Therefore, despite who is elected, it will be a surprise for him if concrete steps are taken for a just and permanent solution in the island.
He went on and said that he still have difficulties understanding why the Greek Cypriots rejected the Annan Plan.
Evaluating the declaration of Kosovos independence, he said that it will be a very positive initiative for the TRNC and added that after this development the Cyprus problem will proceed rabidly to a solution.
 Yonluer stated that the policy of the recognition of the TRNC must be persuadedTurkish daily Kibris newspaper (28.02.08) reports that the former mufti in occupied Cyprus and chairman of the Politics for the People Party (HIS), Ahmet Yonluer, has stated that there is no much hope for a solution of the Cyprus problem to be reached in 2008 and added that the policy of the recognition of the TRNC must be persuaded. Mr Yonluer who issued a written statement yesterday said, inter alia, that after Christofias election some circles thought that there will be peace immediately, but there will be no change. The Greek Cypriot side is not willing to agree on the issue of the political equality. It wants the withdrawal of the Turkish army. How can we move towards peace under these conditions?, he wondered.
 Honey and fish trade from the occupied areas to the free areas of the Republic of CyprusTurkish daily Vatan newspaper (28.02.08) reports that the Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Commerce (KTTO) announced that the necessary preparations for honey and fish trade from the occupied areas to the free areas of the Republic of Cyprus have been completed. The fishermen who want to sell their fish to the free areas must apply to the KTTO.
 US Defense Secretary arrives in Ankara. It is expected to ask Turkeys support in the fight against al-Qaeda in AfghanistanTurkish daily Todays Zaman newspaper (28.02.08) inter alia reports the following:
Hours before his scheduled talks with Turkish officials in Ankara today, US Defense Secretary Robert Gates cautioned that Turkey must limit its military operations against the outlawed Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) in northern Iraq to days or a couple of weeks rather than months.
Gates said yesterday that Turkey should not rely on military action alone in dealing with PKK members, but also employ initiatives that address economic and social conditions.
In addition to Turkeys ongoing operation inside Iraq, Afghanistan is expected to be one of the priority topics to be discussed Gates talks here. There has been speculation that the US, which has been supplying real-time intelligence to Turkey -- key in accurately determining the PKK targets -- may now press Ankara to send combat troops to Afghanistan to fight al-Qaeda terrorists. However, Turkey had previously pledged to contribute with around 24 officers to train Afghan military personnel, refusing to send additional troops for combat missions.
 US Vice President cancels his official visit in TurkeyIstanbul Hurriyet newspaper (27.02.08) reported that the U.S. Vice President Dick Cheney cancelled his official visit to Turkey, which was due in March in a sign of rising tension between Ankara and Washington following Turkey's ground operation against PKK.
U.S. Vice President Dick Cheney cancelled his official visit to Turkey, which was due in March. Sources told hurriyet.com.tr. Cheney didn't specify any reason for canceling his visit.
 Istanbul to host energy meeting of Iraq, Turkey, USTurkish daily Todays Zaman newspaper (28.02.08) reports that Iraqi, Turkish and US officials are scheduled to meet in Istanbul on Saturday for a meeting that will focus on energy issues amid frenzied diplomatic correspondence between Ankara, Baghdad and Washington concerning Turkey's ongoing military operation inside northern Iraq to eliminate the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) based there.
While the United States will be represented by Matt Bryza, US deputy assistant secretary of state for European and Eurasian affairs, at the meeting, Turkey is likely to be represented by Murat Ozcelik of the Foreign Ministry, the deputy of Turkey's special envoy for Iraq, US and Turkish officials told Today's Zaman on Wednesday. Iraqi officials could not be reached for information on the issue. Officials will focus on ways of transporting Iraqi natural gas to the European market through Turkey. The Saturday meeting is being arranged within the context of an expanded platform of Iraq's neighbors. In November, Istanbul hosted a foreign ministerial level meeting of this platform consisting of Iraq's neighbors, permanent members of the UN Security Council and the G8 group of countries.
At the time the participants agreed to "reaffirm working groups" functions to provide essential input and recommendations for political-level meetings of neighbors to enable them to take concrete decisions and contribute to Iraq's ongoing process, as well as regional stability, and in this context, endorse the recommendations proposed by the three working groups already formed and decide to maintain as long as required these working groups on energy, security and refugees created at the first expanded neighbors conference held in Sharm el-Sheikh.
 Iraqs Talabani accepts President Gulīs invitation to visit TurkeyAnkara Anatolia news agency (27.02.08) reported the following from Baghdad:
A Turkish diplomatic delegation --led by Prime Ministry Chief Adviser Prof. Ahmet Davutoglu-- met with the Iraqi President Jalal Talabani in Baghdad on Wednesday. Bilateral relations between Turkey and Iraq as well as PKK terrorist organization issue were discussed in the meeting.
The delegation conveyed a formal letter of Turkish President Abdullah Gul who invited Talabani to visit Turkey. Talabani accepted the invitation, and said he would visit Turkey in an appropriate time.
Iraqi FM Hoshyar Zebari also attended the meeting.
 Turkey to host Third Iraqi International FairAnkara Anatolia news agency (27.02.08) reported the following from Ankara:
The Union of Chambers and Commodity Exchanges of Turkey (TOBB) will promote the "Third Iraqi International Fair" which will take place in Turkish southeastern province of Gaziantep.
TOBB Chairman Rifat Hisarciklioglu, Turkish State Minister Kursad Tuzmen, Iraqi Ambassador in Ankara Sabah Omran as well as many Iraqi officials will attend the introductory press conference in Ankara on Thursday.
The fair --which will be held between May 22nd and 25th, 2008-- is the only fair which Iraqi Trade Ministry supports abroad.
The trade volume between Turkey and Iraq has reached 2.5 billion USD in 2007. Iraq is considered as one of the biggest commercial partners of Turkey. More than 900 companies from 30 countries participated in last year's fair.
 Babacan to attend Southeast Europe Cooperation Process Meeting in SofiaAnkara Anatolia news agency (27.02.08) reported the following from Ankara:
Turkish FM and Chief Negotiator for the EU talks Ali Babacan will represent Turkey at an informal meeting of foreign ministers of the Southeast Europe Cooperation Process in Bulgarian capital of Sofia.
According to a MFA statement, the foreign ministers will discuss developments regarding Kosovo, the entire region, as well as matters related to transformation of Stability Pact for Southeastern Europe to Regional Cooperation Council.
 Turkish president approves law which enables foreigners to establish new foundations in the countryTurkish daily Hurriyet newspaper (27.02.08) reported that the Turkish President Abdullah Gul approved ''5737'' numbered Foundations Law, which enables foreigners to establish new foundations on the basis of reciprocity in Turkey, on Tuesday.
New foundations will also be able to open branches and representations by making declaration to Foundations Directorate. Foundations will obtain property and manage them without taking any permission. They will also be able to pursue international activities and cooperation, and open branches and representations in foreign countries.
[B] Commentaries, Editorials and Analysis
 Christofias does not give the chance to Talat to consult with Ankara,Under the above title Turkish Cypriot daily Afrika (28.02.08) reports in its daily column Afrikadan mektup (Letter from Afrika), that despite the fact that many officials of various countries congratulated Demitris Christofias for his victory no statement was made by Turkey on the issue and writes that the result of the election came as a surprise for Ankara.
The paper writes that no one knows what kind of contacts Mehmet Ali Talat had with Ankara for the meeting he is going to have next week with Christofias, which is going to take place under the latters pressure and notes that if Talat does not take Ankaras approval, he cannot take any initiative here, even for the opening of the Lokmaci (Ledra Street) crossing point. Talat did not verify or deny the news about the opening of Lokmaci, writes the paper which adds that if Christofias telephones Talat and tells him Come on, lets open the Lokmaci, Talat may say, This cannot be done, I will ask Turkey first. Afrika writes that Christofias, contrary to what Papadopoulos did, is moving fast and does not leave to Talat space to consult with Ankara.