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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Cypriot and Turkish Media Review, 14-07-16

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] Ozersay said that both sides agreed on submitting proposals on all six chapters of Cyprus negotiations by the end of the month
  • [02] Erdogan called on the international community to exert pressure to the Greek Cypriot side
  • [03] Columnist: The Turkish Cypriot negotiating team is at the table not to solve the Cyprus problem
  • [04] TMT praised Nami for understanding the "Greek Cypriot's mentality"
  • [05] Talat commented on the "presidential elections": "The candidate supported by Ankara will lose
  • [06] A so-called assembly delegation carries out contacts in Strasbourg
  • [07] More than 84 thousand Turkish citizens living in the occupied area of Cyprus will vote in the Turkish Presidential Elections
  • [08] BKP: North Cyprus has been transformed into a military garrison
  • [09] Kasif said that a new runway will be built at the occupied airport of Tymbou
  • [10] Bakirci: "Water from Turkey will run in Nicosia by September"
  • [11] Erdogan accuses Israel of 'tyranny,' likens an Israeli MP to Hitler
  • [12] Demirtas announced his campaign program
  • [13] Gaza raids 'hurting' Turkish - Israeli energy relations
  • [14] New survey shows Turkey's Muslims more pious as they age


    [01] Ozersay said that both sides agreed on submitting proposals on all six chapters of Cyprus negotiations by the end of the month

    Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris newspaper (16.07.14) reports that the Turkish Cypriot negotiator, Kudret Ozersay has said that both sides agreed on submitting proposals on all six chapters of the negotiations by the end of this month. Ozersay is expected to meet with the Greek Cypriot negotiator Andreas Mavroyiannis today and discuss the convergences achieved in the past, the course of the negotiations from now on, the road map suggested by the Turkish Cypriot side and confidence building measures. During the meeting, the Turkish Cypriot side is expected to express its views as regards the transition period.

    In statements yesterday to Kibris TV, Ozersay argued that what is lacking from the joint declaration is a road map as regards the issue of where the negotiations are heading to and added that the Turkish side has submitted a proposal in this direction.

    Referring to the criticism against the Turkish Cypriot negotiating team that it should not have received the Greek Cypriot proposals as regards the confidence building measures, Ozersay said that such a stance would not be correct.

    Asked whether he would be a candidate for the so-called presidential elections to be held next year in the occupied area of Cyprus, Ozersay replied that this is not his priority, but it is not impossible.


    [02] Erdogan called on the international community to exert pressure to the Greek Cypriot side

    Turkish Cypriot daily Diyalog newspaper (16.07.14) reports that the Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan, called on the international community to exert pressure to the Greek Cypriot side as regards the solution of the Cyprus problem.

    Erdogan who was speaking to members of his party, during an iftar dinner, (TR. Note: dinner for breaking the Ramadan feast] claimed that Turkey and the "TRNC" are the sides who want the solution of the Cyprus problem: "As Turkey we want the political equality of the two peoples in Cyprus and we want a solution based on a mutual understanding. As regards this issue, we safeguard that we are always a step ahead", Erdogan said, claiming that for a solution to be reached, the Greek Cypriot side must show its will for a solution. "We expect from the international community to send strong and decisive messages to the Greek Cypriot side towards this direction", he stated.

    [03] Columnist: The Turkish Cypriot negotiating team is at the table not to solve the Cyprus problem

    Under the title "'Plan B' polemic", columnist Sami Ozuslu writes in Turkish Cypriot daily Yeni Duzen newspaper (16.07.14) that the Turkish Cypriot negotiating team is at the table not to solve the Cyprus problem. According to Ozuslu, it seems that the Turkish Cypriot leader Eroglu and the Turkish Cypriot negotiator, Kudret Ozersay do not talk to each other too much, "because the messages they give are contradictory". Ozuslu adds, inter alia, the following:

    "?We have watched the latest example of this on the issue of 'Plan B'. Last week Ozersay had referred to a 'Plan B' and said that 'if a Plan B is to be found, we have to agree on this'. In the same statement he had not drawn a positive picture as regards the negotiations and had even referred to [his] resignation. Furthermore, a day later, in another statement, Ozersay had said that he 'could become candidate for the presidency'.

    Some days after Ozersay's statement president Eroglu appeared on NTV and said that 'we will not refer to a Plan B' (?)"

    The columnist argues that it would not be wrong to see Eroglu's statement as a reply to Ozersay and as a correction of his statements. Ozuslu notes that Eroglu's statement might have been a result of a demand from the international community which closely watches the negotiations or from the Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

    Ozuslu says that he does not think that Eroglu's and Ozersay's contradictory statements are made as part of a "diplomatic method". Noting that the community's actual worry is what the negotiating team is doing and what is trying to do at the table, Ozuslu concludes by saying: "As it is very often said in this column, the negotiating process has collapsed. According to what came out from the last meeting of the leaders, only confidence building measures exist and unfortunately mutual accusations are one after the other made as regards these [measures]. The substance of the issue is not discussed. Do Eroglu and Ozersay agree or they have disagreements? This is not known, but the following is evident: It is as if 'our team' is there for not solving the Cyprus problem and not to solve it. The word 'as if' may even be too much in the previous sentence!"


    [04] TMT praised Nami for understanding the "Greek Cypriot's mentality"

    Turkish Cypriot daily Star Kibris newspaper (16.07.14) reports on statements by the chairman of the "TMT fighter's association" Yilmaz Bora who in a written statement yesterday, stated that the ongoing negotiation talks for the solution of the Cyprus problem continues with the difficulties which derive from the Greek Cypriot side.

    Pointing out that slight is the chance for the Confidence Building Measures (CBMs) to create a positive atmosphere, Bora added: "The new foreign minister of our state has found the opportunity to see personally the Greek Cypriot's mentality and it is very appreciated and rightful the stance he exhibited without hesitating to express his reaction. Greek Cypriot's games and manoeuvres' should be confronted at all levels".

    Alleging that it's been 51 years now that "two separate administrations exist in Cyprus", Bora added that as a result of the war and the population exchange, the "people" where separated in two different areas, and two different "administrations" where created. "Since then, peace, stability and security exist in Cyprus", he said, adding that nobody would like to live again past experiences nor to see the stability and peace in Cyprus to be damaged.


    [05] Talat commented on the "presidential elections": "The candidate supported by Ankara will lose

    Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris Postasi newspaper (06.07.14) reports that the former Turkish Cypriot leader Mehmet Ali Talat, said that the "candidate" that Ankara will support on the "presidential elections", in the breakaway regime, will lose.

    Talat made these statements speaking at a television program where he was asked to comment on rumours that Ankara wants the Turkish Cypriot negotiator Kudret Ozersay to be a "candidate" in Dervis Eroglu's place.

    Talat who said that these rumours are made up, said that he would recommend to Ankara not to exert pressure on the issue because in the past things did not work well on this direction.

    On the same issue, Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris Postasi (online, 16.07.14) reports that Talat, criticizing Eroglu during the program, said that Eroglu "pretends" he is involved in Cyprus problem but that in reality he is "busy with internal politics".

    "How would Ankra react to your possible candidacy?" asked Akter and Talat said that currently he has no relations with Ankara. "If I become a candidate Ankara wouldn't react. I don't think they would show support either. Ankara will just watch. Ok, indoctrinations behind closed doors are something else but they didn't work in the past. Apart from the Denktas period every Ankara-backed candidate lost so far", said Talat.

    [06] A so-called assembly delegation carries out contacts in Strasbourg

    Turkish Cypriot daily Star Kibris newspaper (16.07.14) reports that a delegation of the so-called assembly composed by the Republican Turkish Party-United Forces (CTP-BG) "deputy" Armagan Candan, the National Unity Party (UBP) "deputy" Esan Saner and the Democratic Party-National Forces "deputy" Hasan Tacoy, continue their contacts in Strasburg.

    The delegation writes the paper, held contacts with political group officials at the European Parliament while at the same time followed the works of the Parliament. The delegation held also a meeting with the "council of ministers" of the President of the European Parliament, Martin Schulz.

    The delegation has underlined during the meeting that they expect by the European Parliament to undertake concrete steps and show sensitivity towards the representation of the Turkish Cypriots to the EP. They also expressed their disappointment over the election of 6 Greek Cypriots as MPs at the European Parliament during the recent EU elections which took place on May.

    The "assembly delegation" has stressed the need for the EP elections to take place separately in the two areas, for the determination of 2 Turkish Cypriots and 4 Greek Cypriots MPs.

    Explaining that during the last EU elections which took place in "south Cyprus" the Turkish Cypriots have not shown a great interest, the delegation alleged that the method followed was not right. Regarding the Cyprus problem, the "delegation" stressed the need for the Cyprus negotiation process to come to a more fruitful and decisive point.

    Meanwhile, as the paper writes, Candan has also attended the meeting of the Group of the Progressive Alliance of Socialists and Democrats at the EP representing the CTP-BG as an observer member.

    The "assembly delegation" will carry out further meetings today and tomorrow with representatives of all political groups at the EP and especially with the members of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the EP. The delegation is expected to return to the occupied area of Cyprus on Friday after completing its contacts.


    [07] More than 84 thousand Turkish citizens living in the occupied area of Cyprus will vote in the Turkish Presidential Elections

    Turkish Cypriot daily Yeni Duzen newspaper (16.07.14) reports that around 84 thousand and 500 persons from Turkey, who live in the occupied area of Cyprus, will have the right to vote in the Turkish Presidential Elections to be held next month.

    In her column under the title "Whose are these votes?" Tumay Tugyan reports that the Turkish citizens living abroad will have the right to vote in these elections and points out that the Turks living in the occupied area of Cyprus will also play a role in determining who the new resident of the Turkish Presidential Palace will be.

    She says: "According to the results of the population census of 2011, the number of the citizens from Turkey who live in the TRNC is 118 thousand and 635. The 80 thousand and 550 persons out of this number are citizens only of Turkey and the 35 thousand and 85 persons are citizens of both Turkey and the TRNC. This is what the data of the State Planning Organization for 2011 say. How many of these 118 thousand persons are registered in the voters registry of Turkey and how many can vote? We will find this out within the next few days. However, according to their age, around 84 thousand and 500 persons are in the position of being able to vote?"

    Tugyan notes that the voters' list will be finalized on 20 July and the Turkish citizens living in the occupied area of Cyprus will be voting between 31 July and 3 August in two places in the occupied part of Nicosia. The results will be announced on 10 August. The columnist wonders which candidate these voters will support, noting that they are few but cannot be underestimated.


    [08] BKP: North Cyprus has been transformed into a military garrison

    According to Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris Postasi Daily News (online, 15.07.14), the 15 July coup by fascist Greek Junta and the 20 July Turkish military invasion were planned in NATO headquarters based on the interests of Anglo-American imperialism argued the Foreign Relations Secretary of the United Cyprus Party (BKP) Salih Sonustun. He also said that these interventions were indeed very destructive and tragic for Cyprus and Cypriots.

    In a written statement issued on Tuesday, Sonustun said that Cyprus was divided by two NATO allies who were acting under US' and UK's command.

    "UK and US wanted to defend their own interests in the region and also wanted to prevent Cyprus from joining the Non-Aligned Movement. Therefore they initiated the Greek coup and prepared the conditions for a military operation by the other NATO ally, Turkey", Sonustun said and added that instead of repairing the constitutional order, Turkey divided Cyprus and kept the north under its military control.

    "After the 20th July of 1974, the north part of the island has been transformed to a military garrison and with the separatist policies, the Turkish Cypriot's political will has been stolen. Also with the systematic population transfer, our demographic structure has been changed", said Sonustun adding that BKP will never settle for anything other than the reunification of the island.

    [09] Kasif said that a new runway will be built at the occupied airport of Tymbou

    According to illegal Bayrak television (online, 15.07.14), the self-styled minister of public works and communication Ahmet Kasif has said that the problems related to the site of the construction of a new runway and terminal building at the occupied airport of Tymbou were solved.

    Kasif said that the problem experienced with the firm who has been awarded the management of the airport was expected to be settled this week.

    Speaking on a program on "BRT", Kasif said that a hangar belonging to a private airline company located on the land where the new landing strip will be built was the cause of the problem.

    "95% of the problem has been solved and we are close to signing a protocol", Kasif said, adding that other problems such as relocating an army unit stationed in the area had also been settled. "I am hoping to be able to tell the company to start construction on the new runway this week" he said.

    Highlighting the urgency of constructing a new runway, Kasif said that the current runway was badly in need of maintenance since its only other alternative, the occupied airport of Lefkonoiko was unsuitable for operations.

    Kasif said that repairing, the occupied airport of Lefkonoiko was next on their agenda.

    Also issuing important statements regarding the occupied port of Famagusta, Kasif said that the construction of a new port for harmful or hazardous cargo is being planned. He said that work was being conducted on this issue in collaboration with counterparts in Turkey.

    [10] Bakirci: "Water from Turkey will run in Nicosia by September"

    According to Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris Postasi Daily News (online, 15.07.14), the self-styled minister of natural resources and environment Hamit Bakirci said that the water that will be transferred from Turkey will be running by September 2014 "if everything goes as planned".

    According to Bakirci, by the end of 2015 the water will be distributed to all of the occupied area of Cyprus.

    Speaking to during a press interview with "A Haber" from Turkey, Bakirci criticized the Republic of Cyprus Government's decision to form a committee regarding the "Turkey-north Cyprus Water Supply Project".

    Bakirci said that all the pipes in the dams in Turkey are installed and the works for the pipes that will be installed in the occupied shores of Cyprus will start by the end of this week.

    The water treatment plant is 80% completed alongside with pontoons said Bakirci adding that the tenders are also finalized. Bakirci said that they are planning to install all the pipes in the occupied area of Cyprus by the end of 2015 and by September 2014 the water will be running in the occupied part of Nicosia.

    Touching upon the Greek Cypriot side's criticism regarding the project, Bak?rc? said that the project will be completed regardless of Greek Cypriot's reactions and that the real aim of the project is to end the drought in Cyprus and nothing else.

    Bakirci alleged: "We always want to have good relations with the south (editor's note: as he refers to the government controlled area of the Republic of Cyprus). If we have mutual good will and understanding, in the long run, Greek Cypriot side can also use the water. Of course, the real target of this project is the north but if both sides agree there can be a way to share this water".

    [11] Erdogan accuses Israel of 'tyranny,' likens an Israeli MP to Hitler

    Turkish daily Today's Zaman (online, 15.07.14) with the above title reported that Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has accused Israel of "terrorizing the region" with its bombardment of Gaza and implied that an Israeli politician is similar to Adolph Hitler in a statement likely to further strain fragile relations between the two countries.

    Israel resumed its assault on Gaza on Tuesday, six hours after an Egyptian-proposed cease-fire failed to halt Palestinian rocket fire into Israeli territory.

    "With utter disregard for international law, Israel continues to terrorize the region, and no country but us is telling it to stop," Erdogan told members of his ruling Justice and Development Party (AK Party) at a speech in Parliament on Tuesday.

    He stated that there is no explanation for Israel's recent acts and accused Israel of violating international law and acting as a "terrorist state." "It has sprayed bullets and caused deaths, as it does in every Ramadan," Erdogan said.

    "No tyranny is everlasting; sooner or later every tyrant has to pay the price... This tyranny will not remain unaccounted for," he added.

    Erdogan also criticized an Israeli member of parliament, apparently Ayelet Shaked of the ultra-nationalist Jewish Home party. "An Israeli woman said that Palestinian mothers should be killed, too. And she's a member of the Israeli Parliament. What is the difference between this mentality and Hitler's?" he asked.

    Erdogan said the cease-fire proposed by Egypt to settle the conflict between Israel and Hamas is not convincing, citing previous cease-fires, adding that Turkey wants to end Israel's blockade of the coastal territory as soon as possible, as a cease-fire is not sufficient to stop the suffering of the Palestinians. "As long as children are being slaughtered in Palestine, it is not possible for our relations to become normal? A cease-fire in Gaza is not enough. We want the immediate lifting of the inhuman embargo on Gaza," Erdogan said.

    During his parliamentary address, Erdogan slammed the international community for being silent over the Gaza offensive. He asked for how long Europe and the Islamic world would remain passive in the face of those who kill their brothers.

    Erdogan also directed his arrows of criticism at the United States for its stance on the Israeli-Hamas conflict. He said the US had told Turkey that it favors a comprehensive peace agreement based on a two-state solution, adding that the US is not behaving as though it wants a two-state solution.

    [12] Demirtas announced his campaign program

    Under the title "May God help Erdogan if I'm elected President", Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (online, 15.07.14) reported that the Peoples' Democratic Party's (HDP) candidate for the upcoming presidential elections, Selahattin Demirtas, revealed the roadmap of his campaign at an Istanbul meeting on July 15, along with a slogan declaring a "call for a new life."

    In the meeting, Demirtas underlined his stance against all kinds of discrimination in Turkey while also boldly claiming that he will win the elections in the first round, scheduled for Aug. 10.

    Responding to a question from a reporter, he also added that the Justice and Development Party's (AKP) leader and candidate for the elections, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, would need God's help if Demirtas is elected President and Erdogan remains Prime Minister.

    "If I win and become President and Erdogan remains Prime Minister, then may God help him. He will have to get used to democracy and plurality. He will not be able to tell [me], 'come on, we're leaving,' in any meetings," Demirtas said. The latter was a clear reference to a notorious incident on May 10, when Erdogan interrupted a speech in Ankara by Metin Feyzioglu, the chairman of the Union of Turkish Bar Associations, and called on incumbent President Abdullah Gul to leave with him as he stormed out of the meeting.

    Demirtas was repeatedly asked by reporters what his stance would be if he does not make it through to the possible second round of the election, and hinted that he would not express support for either Erdogan or fellow candidate Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu in a possible run-off. "We will never withdraw to the advantage of any candidates in the second round," he said.

    The co-leader of the Kurdish problem-focused HDP linked Turkey's democratization to the solution of the Kurdish issue, vowing to change the current Constitution.

    "The changing of this Constitution, which blesses the state and ignores the people, cannot be postponed anymore," he said.

    "The education system should be multi-lingual and everyone should have the right to learn their mother tongue in the education system. Along with the official language of Turkish, mother tongue education should be provided," said Demirtas.

    Religion was another subject on which Demirtas made promises distinct from the other two candidates, saying that both the Religious Affairs Directorate (Diyanet) and compulsory religion classes at school should be abolished.

    "Religion classes should not be compulsory, students should be free to choose whether to attend such classes or not. The Higher Education Board [YOK] should also be abolished and education shouldn't be reduced to exams," he said.

    Demirtas added that compulsory military service should be abolished and he would defend citizens' right to conscientious objection, while also stressing that he would emphasize women's rights and the rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and intersex (LGBTI) individuals.

    Responding to a question about his stance on the "parallel structure," the term used by Prime Minister Erdogan to refer to members of the movement of Islamic scholar Fethullah Gulen, Demirtas emphasized the once-healthy links between Erdogan and the Gulen movement. "It is absurd for the AKP to call a structure 'parallel,' considering that they have been intersected with each other for some time," he said.

    [13] Gaza raids 'hurting' Turkish - Israeli energy relations

    According to Ankara Anatolia news agency (15.07.14), Turkey is considered as the most reliable route for Israel to export its natural gas by many economists, however the recent Israeli military operation in Gaza has created a further backsliding in Turkish-Israeli rapprochement.

    David Koranyi, acting director of Dinu Patriciu Eurasia Center ? part of the U.S. Atlantic Council think tank ? told Anatolia news agency that all of Israel's options to export its natural gas to international markets suffer from one or more major flaws, either politically or commercially.

    "It is important to understand that nothing has been decided yet," Koranyi said, adding that, "the only thing that seems fairly certain is export of somewhat larger quantities of gas to Jordan, which desperately needs to reduce its prohibitive energy bill."

    Noble and Delek, the two energy companies with operating rights in Leviathan, said in late June that they signed a preliminary agreement with British oil and gas company BG to export 7 billion cubic meters of gas to BG's facility in Egypt for 15 years.

    Commenting on the deal, Koranyi said that although the agreement between Israel and BG made a lot of commercial sense ? it was "tentative".

    Underlining that such a deal is fraught by political challenges, Koranyi said any new arrangement on purchasing Israeli gas would encounter domestic opposition and also face security challenges in the Sinai region if the existing Port Said ? El Arish pipeline is used.

    Koranyi said a pipeline to Turkey via the Cypriot exclusive economic zone (EEZ) or Cyprus itself is another option for Israel; however, this is unlikely without resolving the Cyprus dispute first.

    "Thus, the Turkish option seems quite difficult these days, unless the parties somehow manage to reach an agreement in a triangle format (Israeli, Greek and Turkish Cypriot and Turkish)", Koranyi said.

    Anastasios Giamouridis, a senior energy consultant at Poyry Consulting, said that developing a liquefied natural gas, LNG, facility in Israel is difficult because of land constraints.

    "Other LNG options are to take the gas to Egypt and liquefy it in Egypt, or to take it to Cyprus and liquefy it in Cyprus. The final option is in Israeli offshores, a floating LNG unit," Giamouridis said.

    Underlining that the Turkish energy market is much more substantial than the regional markets, Giamouridis added: "An offshore pipeline from Israel to Turkey would have minimum amount of risks, as there will be nobody threatening to blow up the pipelines like the ones in Egypt."

    [14] New survey shows Turkey's Muslims more pious as they age

    According to Turkish daily Sabah (online, 16.07.14), a survey entitled "Religious Life in Turkey" was conducted by the Presidency of Religious Affairs "(Diyanet Isleri Baskanligi) on religion and religious habits in Turkey. Surveys had previously been conducted on faith and religious life in the past but most of them were confined to one city or to a limited number of interviewees. For Diyanet's survey, 21,632 people were interviewed across the country, which has a population of over 76 million, and 50.9% of them were women. All interviewees were aged 18 and above.

    Almost all interviewees identified as Muslim while only 0.4% said they were of other faiths or do not believe in any religion at all. The majority of them, at 77.5%, followed the Hanafi madhhab or school of law interpreting religious rules while 11.1% were Shafi and 0.1% followed the Hanbali school. One percent responded that they followed the Jafari sect of Shia Islam and 6.3% described themselves as followers of none of these sects while 2.4% are not aware of his or her sect. "Turkey is a country whose population is 99% Muslim" has long been at the centre of arguments related to country's religion but was often downplayed as an unofficial figure.

    When asked whether they believe in God, 98.7% of participants responded that they believe God's existence and oneness while 0.8% replied either that they doubted his existence but still believed, or were doubtful of his existence and did not believe in God at all. The results were not unexpected according to experts in the country where the atheist population is a small minority.

    A majority of participants said they accepted all revelations in Quran as accurate and valid for people of all ages while only 1% expressed doubt. A large majority of the interviewees expressed their faith in the Day of Resurrection and Judgment and only 0.9% did not believe in resurrection and being held accountable for their sins and good deeds. Over 95% of the participants believe in the existence of angels, Satan and djinns.

    Though an overwhelming majority are followers of Islam, figures of those observing the religion strictly remain low according to the survey. Piety among Muslims is high in rural parts of the country and among the elderly.

    Less than half of interviewees perform daily prayers while 16.9% do not. More than half of those performing prayers five times a day live in rural areas while 39.4% live in cities. The survey shows women perform daily prayers more than men and there is a correlation between the age and frequency of performing prayers.

    Another interesting finding in the survey is that the higher the level of education Muslim individuals has, the more they are inclined to skip daily prayers. The frequency of performing daily prayers is the highest among illiterate Muslims.

    More than 71% of women interviewed said they covered their head while going out though they were not asked whether they regularly wear a headscarf or other forms of covering and 27.2% said they did not cover. Wearing headscarves or other items to cover the head is more common in rural parts of Turkey according to the survey.

    The main reason women cited for wearing a headscarf was that they believed it is an obligation of Islam. This reason was followed by family's pressure, adherence to customs and societal pressure respectively. TURKISH AFFAIRS SECTION

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