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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Cypriot and Turkish Media Review, 15-03-26
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From: The Republic of Cyprus Press and Information Office Server at <http://www.pio.gov.cy/>TURKISH CYPRIOT AND TURKISH MEDIA REVIEW No. 57/15 25-26.03.15
[A] TURKISH CYPRIOT / TURKISH PRESS
[A] TURKISH CYPRIOT / TURKISH PRESS
 Bilgic: "The Greek Cypriots should exert efforts for the solution"Under the above title, Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris newspaper (25.03.15) reported that the spokesman of the Turkish Foreign Ministry Tanju Bilgic in statements during a press conference at the Ministry, called the Greek Cypriot side to suspend its "unilateral" activities in the Eastern Mediterranean and to exert sincere efforts towards the solution of the Cyprus problem by returning to the negotiating table.
Responding to a question at his routine weekly press briefing regarding the Cyprus negotiations process, Bilgic said that following:
"Both the TRNC and Turkey remain committed to a lasting political settlement in Cyprus. The Greek Cypriot side had abandoned the negotiating table before, providing as an excuse the efforts we carried out in order to protect the interests of the Turkish Cypriots. Actually, this indicates their insincerity. Whereas, a comprehensive solution in Cyprus will also bring forward a solution to the issue of sharing the natural resources on the island. The Turkish Cypriot side is still at the negotiating table and maintains the political will and determination to resume the talks within the framework set by the 11th of February 2014 Joint Declaration", Bilgic said.
He, however, pointed out that it is not possible to reach to a solution only with the determination of the Turkish Cypriot side. "We are expecting the Greek Cypriot side to suspend all its unilateral activities in the Eastern Mediterranean, to return to the negotiating table and to show a sincere effort towards a settlement. Turkey will continue to support the TRNC in all fields as it did yesterday, today and tomorrow", Bilgic added.
 Cicek: I wish 2015 will be the year of solution in CyprusTurkish Cypriot daily Kibris newspaper (26.03.15) reports that the speaker of the Turkish Grand National Assembly Cemil Cicek expressed the wish that 2015 will be the year of solution in Cyprus.
He made these statements speaking at the Centre for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) in Washington in a conference under the title "Turkish-US relations in the 21st century".
Cicek claimed that the determination of Turkey for a just and permanent solution, based on political equality continues. However, the described as "unfortunate" the fact that "the Greek Cypriot side started unilateral explorations for natural gas in Eastern Mediterranean and that they used as an excuse to leave the negotiation table the measures taken by the Turkish Cypriot side in order to safeguard its rights".
Cicek said that the return of the Greek Cypriot side to the negotiation table will create again the hope for the solution of the Cyprus problem. "It is our wish that this conflict which has been continuing for 50 years now to come to an end in 2015", he claimed.
 Turkuaz seismic vessel will start search for oil and natural gasAccording to Turkish daily Sabah (online, 25.03.15), Turkuaz seismic vessel, which was designed and built by Turkish engineers, will start to search for oil and natural gas on behalf of Turkey next week.
The Mineral Research and Exploration Institute (MTA) has completed the building of a seismic vessel that can search for oil and natural gas in the poles and oceans. The vessel, which was given the name "Turkuaz Search Vessel," will be put into the sea with a ceremony attended by Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu and Energy and Natural Resources Minister Taner Yildiz next week. Turkuaz, together with the Barbaros vessel, will be used to search for oil and natural gas on behalf of Turkey. It was stated that Turkuaz is not only a seismic vessel, but also has up-to-date geological, geophysical, hydrographical equipment and remote control robot systems. Thus, Turkuaz can collect data from the seas, evaluate them in laboratories and analyse the samples collected from the sea bed. It also has a heliport that reaches international standards.
Besides the continental shelf of Turkey, Turkuaz has the capacity to search for oil in the poles, oceans and hotly disputed regions like the Black Sea, Aegean Sea and Eastern Mediterranean. It also has the capacity to draw earthquake maps of Turkey, research climate change, sea pollution and life at the bottom of the sea. Turkuaz can also be used by public institutions. The Barbaros vessel, the other investment by Turkey in this field, is owned by the Turkish Petroleum Corporation (TPAO), while Turkuaz is owned by the MTA.
 Eroglu: We are ready to complete the Cyprus problemTurkish Cypriot daily Kibris newspaper (26.03.15) reports that the Turkish Cypriot leader Dervis Eroglu and candidate for the "presidential elections" to be held on April 19, stated that he is ready to complete the Cyprus problem.
Eroglu said that the negotiations will be launched soon and claimed that the Turkish Cypriot side has a time limitation but has every good intention to finish the Cyprus problem. He also said that he is aware of all the worries and knows all the thoughts of the Turkish Cypriots and he is ready to negotiate for their best interests.
Kibris (25.03.15) reported that Eroglu, in the framework of his election campaign stated that the Turkish Cypriot side is committed and sincere to a solution based on the "realities" of the island. He accused the Greek Cypriot side of leaving the negotiation table and he claimed that he still believes that it is possible to reach a settlement if there is good will.
 Support from BKP to AkinciTurkish Cypriot daily Afrika newspaper (25.03.15) reported that the United Cyprus Party (BKP) expressed full support to the "presidential candidate" Mustafa Akinci.
According to information given by BKP, the chairman of BKP, Izzet Izcan expressed the belief that Akinci is the only candidate who will be able to achieve an early federal solution in Cyprus and the only one who can embrace the Turkish Cypriot community.
Speaking during a luncheon meeting with party officials, Izcan argued that the "presidential candidate" Akinci is different from the other candidates and supported that "he is the only candidate who can share the vision of an independent and objective presidency".
Izcan stated that BKP will support Akinci at the forthcoming "presidential elections" and called all Turkish Cypriots to support him since as he stated, Akinci's victory will open the door for a new period for the Turkish Cypriots.
 Cirali announced the establishment of a new joint hellim committee between Turkey and the "TRNC"Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris Postasi newspaper (25.03.15) reported that the chairman of the "Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Industry", Ali Cirali, speaking exclusively to the paper, announced that a joint hellim committee composed by Turkish and Turkish Cypriot representatives has been established.
According to the paper, Cirali's statements caused the reaction of the chairman of the "Union of dairy products' producers" in the occupied area of Cyprus, Candan Avunduk who alleged that they were not informed about the establishment of the new "committee". Avunduk added that the issue of hellim cheese had to be a "national cause" and accused Cirali for not informing them.
Cirali explained that the "new joint committee" had been formed to work on hellim/halloumi; he, however, refrained from giving out any other information with regards to the work they were carrying out.
 Ertug holds contacts in AnkaraAccording to illegal Bayrak television (26.03.15), Turkish Cypriot leader Dervis Eroglu's spokesman Osman Ertug, who is currently in Ankara to speak at a panel on the Cyprus issue at Baskent University, said that the suspended Cyprus negotiations process expected to resume in the coming weeks must yield results this time.
Alleging that the Greek Cypriot side has no intention of resolving the Cyprus issue, Ertug said that the water to arrive from Turkey via a pipeline could be a motivating factor for the Greek Cypriots. Ertug also added that the Turkish Cypriot side is ready to share the water and that the Greek Cypriots need to do the same on the issue of hydrocarbons.
Ertug will also be meeting with officials from the Turkish Foreign Ministry and diplomacy correspondents.
Speaking in an interview to TRT in Ankara, Ertug claimed that the Greek Cypriot side has abruptly abandoned the negotiating table. He also said that the Greek Cypriot leader needed to return to the table without any preconditions.
"It is not possible for us to return to the table because we are still there. The important thing is what kind of a negotiating process we will be entering so that we may bury the Cyprus problem in the pages of history once and for all" he said.
Explaining that the new negotiations will start from where they were previously left off, Ertug said that the new process must be conclusive and result oriented.
Claiming that the Greek Cypriot side displayed no intention of settling the Cyprus problem, Ertug said that they expect the international community to lift the "isolations" imposed on the Turkish Cypriots so as to encourage the Greek Cypriots to work towards a settlement.
Asked to comment on rumours that the talks could be carried to Geneva, Switzerland, Ertug said that this could be a positive thing to move the talks outside of Cyprus if groups which opposed a settlement were to take action. "Talks held abroad could allow the leaders to be more flexible and that the Turkish Cypriot side is ready to hold negotiations anywhere."
 Turkey hopes for rapid, unconditional solution to the Cyprus issueAccording to Ankara Anatolia news agency (26.03.15), Turkey is supporting the immediate resumption of peace talks between Turkish and Greek Cypriots, claimed Ayda Soylu, the UN Geneva "representative" of the breakaway regime in the occupied area of the Republic of Cyprus.
Soylu made the comments as part of the annual report on the human rights situation in Cyprus, which was presented during the 28th session of the UN Human Rights Council.
"The lack of finding a solution to the Cyprus issue is deeply affecting human rights in the TRNC (editor's note: the breakaway regime in the occupied area of the Republic of Cyprus)", claimed Soylu, alleging that discrimination and violence against Turkish Cypriots is increasing.
Soylu also claimed that "the number of schools providing education in Turkish is insufficient in the island's south (editor's note: the government controlled area of the Republic of Cyprus), while lawmakers had also banned Turkish names of geographical regions (editor's note: Cyprus Parliament banned the use of the Turkish names of the Greek Cypriot villages in the occupied area of the Republic of Cyprus, which were changed after Turkey's invasion to Cyprus in 1974)". "Political and social rights of TRNC citizens have been illogically rejected," said Soylu.
"Turkey fully supports the immediate resumption and the rapid conclusion of UN-led peace talks", she claimed, adding that Turkey hopes that the Greek Cypriot side holds similar views.
 The "chairman of the Turkish Cypriot municipalities' union" is in Strasbourg to attend a CongressAccording to illegal Bayrak television (online, 25.03.15), a delegation from the "union of cyprus turkish municipalities" is taking part in the 28th Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of the European Council.
The self-styled chairman of the union and mayor of the occupied village Geunyeli Ahmet Benli evaluated their Strasbourg visit to the "BRT" stating that "during the 27th congress they had emphasized the deficiencies on the status of the Turkish Cypriot people and that during this congress the situation had been rectified".
"The agreement reached in 2004 had enabled us to be here but there are some shortcomings and during last year's congress we had voiced these and now we are attending the 28th session not as visitors but with a host status", said Benli.
He added that for the first time the Turkish Cypriot "people" are taking their official place at the congress. "We sat at the 487th seat for the first time. We have strengthened our status" said Benli.
 A cooperation protocol between the breakaway regime and the Haccettepe University on organ transplantsAccording to illegal Bayrak television (26.03.15), the self-styled health minister Ahmet Gulle, who has begun his contacts in Ankara, met yesterday with Turkey's Health Minister Mehmet Muezzinoglu. They discussed ways of solving the problems of patients sent to Turkey for treatment as well as issues related to cooperation between the two "countries".
Speaking to the "BRT", Gulle pointed out that Turkey has serious experience when it comes to health and health systems and that they are benefiting from this.
Stating that they want to create a unique health system which addresses the needs of the "TRNC" by taking into account the infrastructural conditions of the country, Gulle said that discussions with Muezzinoglu focused on cooperating for the establishment of a general health insurance scheme.
Gulle will be signing a health protocol with the Haccettepe University for cooperation on organ and cell transplants.
Meanwhile, the self-styled minister of environment and natural resources Hakan Dincyurek is also in Ankara for a series of contacts. He met with the Turkish Minister for Environment and Urban Planning Idris Gulluce.
 Strike of all trade unions of the "public sector" paralyzed life in the breakaway regimeTurkish Cypriot daily Kibris newspaper (26.03.15) writes that "life has stopped" yesterday at the breakaway regime after all trade unions of the "public sector" in all occupied towns held a strike and marched in front of the "prime ministry".
The trade unions were protesting against the "immigration law" which allows new regulations to the salaries of the new coming "public sector employees" and considered to be against the rights of workers, according to the unions which also claimed that the "law" is against the "constitution" and call on the "government" to abolish it.
Small fights took place between the "police" and the protestors in the occupied part of Lefkosia after the latter brought a puppet in front of the "prime ministry" which it represented the "government" and set it on fire and also tried to force the gates of the "building" in order to enter the "prime ministry", writes the paper.
 Data on tourist facilities and hotels in the occupied area of CyprusTurkish Cypriot daily Havadis newspaper (26.03.15) reported on statements by Sahap Asikoglu, "undersecretary" of the so-called ministry of tourism who in statements to the paper, referred, inter alia to the occupation regime's tourism and underlined that in occupied Famagusta there are tourists but as he said there is not enough bed capacity.
Asikoglu in his statements said that there are a lot of tourist complexes' in the occupied area of Famagusta which are inactive and stressed the need for incentives to be given to their owners in order to reactivated their facilities.
Asikoglu explained that there are two active hotels in occupied Famagusta, the Palm Beach Hotel and the Salamis Bay Conti Resort Hotel. He added that still, these two hotels are not enough to cover the needs of the tourists.
Asikoglu stated also that there are totally 134 hotels operating in the "TRNC" in 2015. The total hotel bed capacity is 19.300.
According to data given by the "Turkish Cypriot hotelier's union", in occupied Keryneia there are totally 88 facilities with 13,057 bed capacity, in occupied Famagusta there are 9 facilities with 1,499 bed capacity, in occupied Trikomo 28 facilities with 3,819 bed capacity, in occupied Morfou 4 facilities with 126 bed capacity and in occupied Lefkosia 5 facilities with 808 bed capacity.
Seventeen out of the 134 hotels which operate in the occupation regime, are five-star hotels, 4 are four-star hotels, 10 are three-star hotels, 18 are two-star hotels and 18 are one-star.
Also, in general, there are 5 tourist villages, 5 boutique hotels, 29 touristic bungalows, 3 hotel apartments, 18 guesthouses e.t.c.
 More on Talip Atalay's efforts to become an AKP candidateTurkish Cypriot daily Havadis newspaper (25.03.15) reported about Talip Atalay, the "director" of the "Religious affairs department" in the occupied area of Cyprus who is a candidate to be a candidate for the parliament elections is Turkey with the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP).
According to the paper, the AKP supporters in the breakaway regime have started to show their support to Atalay, despite the fact that it is not determined yet if he will be a candidate or not. The paper also wrote that Atalay had showed how religious he truly is since one of the main issues he supports in his campaign is the importance of Quran lessons to be taught in the occupied area of Cyprus.
 "Turkish Cypriot tourism, writers and journalists association" establishedTurkish Cypriot daily Yeni Duzen (25.03.15) reports that the "Turkish Cypriot tourism writers and journalists association" (KITUYAD), consisting of journalists, writers, academicians and researchers who works on mass media for tourism issues, was established in the occupied area of the Republic of Cyprus.
According to a statement by Reha Arar, chairman of the board of Merit Hotels, he said that the tourism section is important for the economy of the "TRNC" and it should be promoted.
 Turkish cartoonists sentenced to jail for insulting Erdogan; Columnist Idiz comments on Erdogan's intolerance on criticismAccording to Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (online, 25.03.15), two cartoonists for the popular satirical weekly Penguen have been jailed to 11 months in prison, over a satirical piece on free speech in which they were convicted of including a hidden gesture "insulting" Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
Cartoonists Bahadir Baruter and Ozer Aydogan were sued for the Aug. 21, 2014, cover of the magazine, which satirized Erdogan's election as Turkey's President. In the drawing, Erdogan is seen asking whether officials at the new presidential palace in Ankara have prepared "any journalists to slaughter", referring to ritual sacrifice in Islam, to mark his inauguration.
Soon after the publication, a Turkish citizen named Cem Safcier filed a complaint to the Prime Ministry, arguing that the "ball-shaped" hand gesture of the official seen buttoning his jacket while welcoming Erdogan in the cartoon is used to imply that the person being addressed is homosexual.
More than 70 people in Turkey have been prosecuted for "insulting" Erdogan since he was elected President in August 2014.
Commenting on the same issue, columnist Semih Idiz (HDN, 26.05.15), under the title "Erdogan must tolerate criticism", writes, inter alia, the following:
"According to a Turkish saying, he (or she) who goes to the hamam must be prepared to sweat. This means that if you are taking on a particular job you must be prepared to put up with its downside. President Recep Tayyip Erdogan does not want to observe this.
His intolerance is increasingly showing through the number of libel and slander cases opened by him against journalists, caricaturists, artists, and ordinary citizens, many of which result in convictions. Erdogan's sense of the democratic right of critical free expression is limited, if it exists at all. To cite another Turkish saying, he wants a rose garden without the thorns.
To cite a famous example, Abdulhamid, who was also known for his intolerance, banned all depictions and references to large noses in political caricatures and writings because of his own disproportionate nose, and sent all those who defied him to prison. That was over a century ago. Erdogan's behaviour shows that some things change little in Turkey.
This is only the latest case showing the extent to which the judiciary has been co-opted to protect Erdogan's reputation, at the expense of the freedom of expression.
Responding to a parliamentary question by the main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP), the Justice Ministry revealed recently that throughout the seven months that Erdogan has been in office as President, 105 investigations have been initiated against people who allegedly insulted him, resulting in eight arrests.
The fact that former "Miss Turkey," Merve Buyuksarac, is facing four-and-a-half-years in jail for allegedly insulting Erdogan by posting a satirical poem taken from a magazine on her Instagram site has even become world news, further damaging Erdogan's already tarnished international prestige.
Previous Turkish Presidents were generally respected due to the office they held, which is supposed to be above party politics according to the Turkish constitution. Erdogan has violated this elemental rule and is acting as a President who works only for his own constituency, not for all of Turkey as he should.
He therefore invites the criticism he gets and will ultimately have to learn to live with this. If he is not prepared to do so, then he has to be prepared to sue many more people, and brace himself for the fresh damage that this will do to his reputation at home and abroad."
(DPs) TURKISH AFFAIRS SECTION