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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Cypriot and Turkish Media Review, 15-06-02

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 <>

TURKISH CYPRIOT AND TURKISH MEDIA REVIEW No. 100/15 30-31.05-01-02.06.2015


  • [01] Akinci departed today for New York to meet with the UNSG
  • [02] Akinci met with foreign Ambassadors
  • [03] Cavusoglu: The Turkish Cypriots will decide on the guarantors' issue
  • [04] Three former "prime ministers" evaluated the issue of the guarantees
  • [05] Ozersay argues that involvement of the EU in the Cyprus negotiations will harm the Turkish Cypriot side
  • [06] Talat did not excluded the possibility to form a "coalition government" with UBP if he would be elected to the leadership of CTP
  • [07] Durduran: Turkey's stance makes the Cyprus settlement difficult
  • [08] Bilgin to illegally visit the occupied area of Cyprus
  • [09] UBP changes the way it operates
  • [10] TDP to revise party program after holding charter congress
  • [11] The project for bringing electricity from Turkey to the occupied area of the Republic of Cyprus will cost 130 million euro
  • [12] Editor of Cumhuriyet probed over front-page story on arms allegedly sent to Syria
  • [13] HDP not to return to "ethnic politics" after polls
  • [14] National Party leader detained for insulting Erdogan
  • [15] Bank Asya in Turkey is taken over by the state-run Savings Deposit Insurance Fund for connections with the Gullen movement
  • [16] Turkish commentary views change undergone by Erdogan since 2001


    [01] Akinci departed today for New York to meet with the UNSG

    Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris newspaper (02.06.15) reports that Turkish Cypriot leader, Mustafa Akinci is expected to depart this morning for New York where he will meet with the UN Secretary-General, Ban Ki-moon. The meeting will be held on Thursday, 4 June at 12.00 hours (New York time or 19.00 Cyprus time). Turkish Cypriot negotiator, Ozdil Nami, Akinci's spokesman, Baris Burcu, the director of Akinci's office, Cenk Gurcag and the breakaway regime's "representative" in New York, Mehmet Dana will participate in the meeting.

    According to information acquired by Kibris, Akinci will convey to Ban the Turkish Cypriot view for finding a solution to the Cyprus problem the soonest within the framework of the 11 February joint declaration. Akinci will also express the wish that this solution is reached by the end of 2015. Furthermore, he is expected to reiterate the commitment of the Turkish Cypriot side to continue what is described as its "positive contribution" to finding a solution.

    A well informed source told Kibris that this kind of meetings usually last for half an hour, but this time it may last longer because it will be the first meeting between Ban and Akinci or a second meeting might be arranged.


    [02] Akinci met with foreign Ambassadors

    Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris newspaper (02.06.15) reports that Turkish Cypriot leader, Mustafa Akinci met yesterday with the US Ambassador to Nicosia, John Koenig at his office in the occupied part of Nicosia. In statements after the 40-minute long meeting, Koenig said that there is a reason to be hopeful that the Cyprus negotiations will have a positive result. He noted that he had the opportunity to listen from Akinci the progress achieved in the negotiations, adding that he wanted to listen to Akinci's views before the latter's departure for New York. Asked whether he is hopeful for the solution process and on whether this process will reach a result, Koenig said: "I think that all of us are hopeful. We have reasons to have certain optimism as regards this procedure. When you meet with Akinci and you see that they have developed a constructive dialogue with Mr Anastasiades under the UN roof, there is a reason for you to be optimistic".

    Meanwhile, Turkish Cypriot daily Havadis newspaper (02.06.15) reports that yesterday Akinci met also separately with the Ambassadors of Austria and Germany to Nicosia, Karl Mueller and Nikolai Von-Schoepff respectively. No statements were issued after these meetings.


    [03] Cavusoglu: The Turkish Cypriots will decide on the guarantors' issue

    Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris (30.05.15), in its front page with the above title, reports that Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said that the guarantees will continue as long as the Turkish Cypriots want.

    Speaking at a meeting at the Izmir Chamber of Commerce, Cavusoglu referred to the issue of guarantees, adding that there is a strong consensus both in Turkey and the "TRNC" (translator's note: the breakaway regime in the occupied area of the Republic of Cyprus). He also claimed: "We are sincere, if the Greek Cypriot side is sincere too, then we will resolve this problem within this year".

    Cavusoglu stressed that Turkey will remain as a guarantor power in Cyprus as long as the Turkish Cypriot "people" want it to do so.

    Criticizing the Greek Cypriot side for bringing up the issue of guarantees so early in the process, Cavusoglu said: "Instead of focusing on the more urgent matters, the Greek Cypriots brought up the issue just so to water down the process" and added that the Greek Cypriot leader Nicos Anastasiades is now giving positive messages.

    He further said: "What is the duty of the Greek Cypriot negotiator? To focus on solving or reaching convergences on all the outstanding issues such as territory or the fenced off city of Varosha with a win-win formula. There are already convergences in the process. What is this? This is trying to shift the agenda elsewhere. Why are you throwing the ball somewhere else instead of negotiating the technical issues? Whenever things start going in the right direction they try and throw the ball somewhere else. This opportunity should not be wasted".

    Cavusoglu stressed that Turkey will not give up its guarantor rights unless it is the wish of the Turkish Cypriot "people" and added: "We are in Cyprus as guarantors. They need to feel secure. We are not the ones responsible for the stage we have reached today. Let us not go back to the past and dwell on what was done against the Turkish Cypriot people".

    Cavusoglu also called out to the Greek Cypriot administration (translator's note: as he refers to the Cyprus government) to stop creating false agendas and to focus towards achieving a comprehensive settlement in Cyprus.


    [04] Three former "prime ministers" evaluated the issue of the guarantees

    Under the front-page title: "The guarantees issue should be discussed by the guarantor powers", Turkish Cypriot daily Star Kibris newspaper (01.02.2015) reported on statements by three former "prime ministers" in the occupied area of Cyprus, Hakki Atun, Ferdi Sabit Soyer and Irsen Kucuk, who evaluated to the paper this matter and expressed their personal views.

    Speaking in a program broadcast by ADA TV, Atun said that the negotiation talks have started very well; he, however, pointed to the fact that he does not understand the reason why the Greek Cypriot side has brought into the agenda the issue of guarantees in Cyprus, an issue as he said which is one of the most sensitive. "Since there are a lot of other issues which are more important, it is unnecessary to speak about this issue and at the same time it creates suspicions", Atun said.

    Also speaking, Kucuk said that of course the issue of guarantees is a very important one and added that this issue should be discussed by the guarantor powers. He then expressed the belief that he considers it not necessary to discuss the issue of guarantees at the negotiating table for the moment.

    One the same issue, Soyer expressed the view that discussing the issue of guarantees at this phase is also unnecessary and dangerous. "How the issue of guarantees came up? It is a right gained by the Turkish Cypriots as a result of their long year struggle in the island. With this right, Turkey is not only a territory part in the region but also it has won the right to have a say in all organizations. (?)In my opinion is unnecessary and dangerous to discuss this. We should discuss this issue as a part of the comprehensive solution. We should focus on the issue of Government and Power Sharing, the EU issue and the property issue".


    [05] Ozersay argues that involvement of the EU in the Cyprus negotiations will harm the Turkish Cypriot side

    Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris Postasi newspaper (02.06.15) reports that Turkish Cypriot former negotiator, Kudret Ozersay has argued that they have experienced in Burgenstock that the involvement of the European Union (EU) in the negotiations for finding a solution to the Cyprus problem will be harmful to the Turkish Cypriot side. In statements to Diyalog TV, Ozersay alleged that contrary to the Turkish Cypriot side's "flexible stance", statements are regularly made by the Greek Cypriot side on this issue, but the essence of the issue cannot be understood because no statement is made by the Turkish side. He claimed that a political problem exists because the Turkish side is not a member of the Union and the EU is in favor of the Greek Cypriots because it sits at the negotiating table for "protecting its own laws".

    "The presence of the EU in the negotiations room or at the negotiating table will cause trouble both technically and politically", he alleged adding that "the issue and the priority is a viable federal solution, not the EU membership".

    Referring to the issue of the guarantees, Ozersay expressed the view that guarantees should be included in the solution. "This is not a matter only for Turkey. It is also a matter of security-safety for the Turkish Cypriots as well", he argued.

    Responding to a question on the "silence of Britain on this issue", Ozersay, claimed that if there is no agreement between all the sides, it means that the current situation continues. "That is, there is no need [for Britain] to say something", he argued.


    [06] Talat did not excluded the possibility to form a "coalition government" with UBP if he would be elected to the leadership of CTP

    Turkish Cypriot daily Havadis newspaper (01.06.15) published an interview by former Turkish Cypriot leader Mehmet Ali Talat who replied to the paper's questions on several issues related with the Republican Turkish Party-United Forces (CTP-BG) general congress, which is scheduled to take place on June 14.

    Talat, stated, inter alia that if he will be elected to the leadership of the CTP after the general congress, he will proceed to internal restructure of the party. He stressed the need for the CTP party to re-develop its discipline approach as a democratic centralist party in order as he said to gain the respect of its supporters.

    Asked to reply to the rumors that there is a possibility to establish a "coalition government" with UBP after the congress and if he would establish a "government" with UBP, Talat said: "I would not exclude one party and support and going towards another. I will undertake steps and form the best government no matter which will be the party to cooperate with.(?).



    [07] Durduran: Turkey's stance makes the Cyprus settlement difficult

    According to Turkish Cypriot daily Afrika (02.06.15), the member of the New Cyprus Party (YKP) assembly Albay Durduran said that the stance of Turkey makes difficult the solution of the Cyprus problem.

    Commenting on the Confidence Building Measures (CBMs) announced by the Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci and the Greek Cypriot leader Nicos Anastasiades, Durduran said that the first steps towards the opening of new crossing points and the telephone communication are very positive.

    Durduran said that Turkey is determined not to lose its gains as a guarantor country in Cyprus.

    He also added that the issues like the change of the population structure, the permission of constructing tourist complex harmful to the environment, the license of casino and universities, are all issues which make the solution more difficult.


    [08] Bilgin to illegally visit the occupied area of Cyprus

    Turkish Cypriot daily Star Kibris newspaper (02.06.15) reports that the Turkish Minister of Transport, Maritime and Communication Feridun Bilgin will carry out an "official" visit in the occupied area of Cyprus today.

    According to the paper, Bilgin will hold contacts with the "speaker" of the so-called assembly Sibel Siber, the so-called prime minister Ozkan Yorgancioglu and the so-called minister of transportation and communication Hasan Tacoy.

    Bilgin will then sign a protocol agreement with Tacoy envisaging the "amendment of the civil aviation cooperation agreement" which was signed between Turkey and the occupation regime in 2012. After the signing ceremony, Bilgin and Tacoy will give a joint press conference.

    Bilgin will depart from the occupied area of Cyprus tonight.


    [09] UBP changes the way it operates

    Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris newspaper (02.06.15) reports that Huseyin Ozgurgun, chairman of the National Unity Party (UBP), has explained the changes to be made in the party's charter during the congress which will be held next Saturday, 6 June. He said that the term of duty of the "deputies" will be limited to three terms or 15 years and the term of the party officials, including the president, to five terms or 10 years.

    Moreover, he noted that the system of the delegates for the congress will change with a "more democratic" system providing for the participation of all "party members" in the congresses. He said that they agreed that the women and the young people should be "strongly represented" in the party organs and they will be given equal representation to the one of the "deputies" and the "mayors".

    According to the amendments, candidates for the presidency of the party could become persons who have voted in at least one previous UBP congress, persons "elected as deputies" with the UBP in the recent "parliamentarian elections" and persons "elected" with the UBP as "mayors" or members of "municipal councils" in the "local elections".


    [10] TDP to revise party program after holding charter congress

    Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris Postasi (02.06.15) reports that the leader of the Communal Democracy Party (TDP) Cemal Ozyigit has announced that his party will hold charter congress on the 28th of June.

    Ozyigit said that soon after the congress, the party's program will also be revised. Ozyigit also said that the people had openly demonstrated their desire for a change and added that the TDP will be the pioneer of this change.

    According to Ozyigit, TDP's road map for the upcoming period was being discussed at various organs of the party, and that the TDP will take the necessary decisions in the near future.

    [11] The project for bringing electricity from Turkey to the occupied area of the Republic of Cyprus will cost 130 million euro

    Turkish Cypriot daily Yeni Duzen (31.05.15) reports that the "chairman of the administrative council" of the "TRNC electricity company" ("KIB-TEK) Ismet Akim, in an interview to the paper, said that the feasibility report on transferring electricity from Turkey to the occupied area of the Republic of Cyprus is ready. He added that the project will cost around 130 million euro.


    [12] Editor of Cumhuriyet probed over front-page story on arms allegedly sent to Syria

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (29.05.15) reported that the Turkish authorities have launched an investigation into a newspaper editor for publishing photographs purportedly showing trucks belonging to the Turkish Nat?onal Intelligence Service (MIT) filled with weapons.

    Istanbul prosecutor's office on Friday began an investigation into Can Dundar, the editor-in-chief of the Cumhuriyet daily. The paper ran a front-page story on Friday with the headline: "Here are the arms Erdogan says there were not." Accompanying photos showed several vehicles filled with weapons and ammunition. In one photograph, the serial numbers on the ammunition are visible.

    In January 2014, several trucks were stopped by local gendarmerie in southern Adana and Hatay provinces on the ground that they were loaded with ammunition, despite a national security law forbidding such a search. The case saw the arrests of 26 soldiers.

    Turkey's Interior Ministry said at the time that the trucks, which were reportedly carrying arms into northern Syria, were in reality conveying humanitarian aid to the Turkmen community in the war-torn country.

    Writing on the issue, Hurriyet Daily (01.06.15) reported that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has publicly and personally threatened the editor-in-chief of Cumhuriyet on the issue.

    "This slander and this illegitimate operation against MIT are, in a way, an act of espionage. This newspaper got involved in this espionage activity, too," Erdogan said during an interview on public broadcaster TRT late on May 31.

    "I also filed a lawsuit. What only matter to them is casting a shadow on Turkey's image. I suppose the person who wrote this as an exclusive report will pay a heavy price for this," Erdogan said, in an apparent reference to Cumhuriyet's editor-in-chief, Can Dundar, who had a byline on the report.

    Dundar responded to Erdogan by adapting his words in a tweet early June 1. "The person who committed this crime will pay a heavy price. We will not let go of him," Dundar said while sharing the Cumhuriyet story reporting Erdogan's criticism targeting himself.

    Meanwhile, Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu slammed daily Cumhuriyet which announced a series of interviews with one of the commanders of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK).

    In addition Hurriyet Daily News (02.06.16) reports that main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) leader Kemal K?l?cdaroglu has slammed President Erdogan for publicly and personally threatening the editor-in-chief of Cumhuriyet. Speaking to reporters on the sidelines of his election rally in the eastern Anatolian province of Kars on June 1, K?l?cdaroglu said Erdogan's remarks marked the very first time that a Turkish president has "openly threatened a journalist for exposing a lie."

    [13] HDP not to return to "ethnic politics" after polls

    Turkish Hurriyet Daily News (01.06.15) reported that the pro-Kurdish Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP) will continue its efforts to turn into a political party embracing the entire Turkey by abandoning its decades-old ethnic politics, its co-leader has said, vowing no return even after the June 7 election.

    "If we give up of this rhetoric after the elections, it's the HDP who will be the main loser. We will not fall behind the bar we raised. We'll move forward and not go in reverse. Everybody is curious about what we'll say on June 8. I declare from here that we'll say whatever we have been saying up until today," Selahattin Demirtas, co-chair of the HDP, told the Hurriyet Daily News following a question as to whether the party would return to its Kurdish-focused politics after the elections although the HDP has registered a huge success in reaching out to different segments and political views in society in what its leaders call "the process to become the party of Turkey."

    Demirtas admitted that parties focused on the Kurdish question had failed to come to this point in the past mainly because of their shortcomings, and said: "But now we have shown an important improvement that began with the presidential elections. We are determined to take it further."

    The point the HDP arrived at is also positive for the Turkish citizens of Kurdish origin as well, he said, denying claims that they had abandoned the struggle for Kurdish rights. One of the fundamental questions posed to Demirtas is how his party will react if the HDP fails to enter parliament in the event that it receives 9.9 or 9.8 % of the votes. "The question should not be 'What will you do?' The right question is 'What we'll do.' For instance, those who live in Izmir should ask this question. Because if we fail to pass the threshold, 60 % of this society will suffer from this," he said.

    Demirtas repeated that his party would seek out to be a strong opposition party in the next parliament in a bid to be better ready for becoming the government in the next parliamentary elections, dismissing concerns that it would form a coalition government with the AKP.

    In addition, commenting on the same issue, Murat Yetkin wrote in Hurriyet Daily News (01.06.15) that Turkish parties mobilized millions of people to their election rallies over the weekend as the country enters the last week ahead of the critical June 7 parliamentary elections. "But the most interesting of them all was the May 30 Istanbul rally of the Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP), which focuses on the Kurdish issue, on the same day as the AKP [?] because of the Turkish flags that fluttered in the hands of many followers, together with HDP flags. This was something unimaginable up until two years ago, since the HDP shares the main body of its grassroots with the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK), which launched an armed campaign against Turkey in 1984.

    The HDP has followed a different path than its predecessors since it was established two years ago with the aim of being a party for "all of Turkey," not only the rights of Kurds. Then it challenged the 10% threshold to get into the parliament (unlike its predecessors) which made the ruling AKP uncomfortable. [?] the presence of Turkish flags at the HDP rally is an indication that the HDP has started to change Kurdish politics in a positive way, too. Its success in breaking the 10% threshold and getting into the parliament is likely to make it more possible."

    [14] National Party leader detained for insulting Erdogan

    Turkish daily Today's Zaman (31.05.15) reports that National Party (UP) leader Gokce Firat Culhaoglu has been detained for "insulting and threatening" the Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

    The most recent in the series of intimidating acts came as Culhaoglu, who is also a columnist the Turk Solu weekly, was detained by Istanbul Police Department's counter terrorism units at the order of Istanbul Chief Public Prosecutor's Office on Saturday as part of an investigation launched over one of his speeches posted on YouTube in which he is accused of insulting Erdogan.

    Culhaoglu shared the news of his detention on Twitter, saying he was being taken to the National Police Department building.

    Recently, more than 100 people have been charged and some detained after being accused of insulting Erdogan. Anti-government journalists and public figures in particular have been targeted by the police and prosecutors on the grounds that they have insulted Erdogan. These developments are widely considered as a new method of intimidating political opponents who do not share the government's views.

    Dozens of people including journalists Sedef Kabas, Hidayet Karaca, Can Dundar and Mehmet Baransu, high school students, activists and even Merve Buyuksarac -- a former Miss Turkey -- have been prosecuted for insulting Erdogan on social media such as Twitter and Facebook.

    [15] Bank Asya in Turkey is taken over by the state-run Savings Deposit Insurance Fund for connections with the Gullen movement

    Turkish daily Today's Zaman newspaper (01.06.15) reported that the Banking Regulation and Supervision Agency in Turkey announced late last Friday that it had handed over control of Bank Asya to the state-run Savings Deposit Insurance Fund , in what most consider a politically motivated move, just days before the country's general election slated for June 7.

    Turkey's largest Islamic lender was already being administered by an interim board assigned by the TMSF on Feb. 3.

    Founded by sympathizers of the faith-based Hizmet (service) movement, also known as the Gulen movement -- inspired by Turkish Islamic scholar Fethullah Gulen -- in 1996, Bank Asya, has long been in the news as a target of an intimidation campaign led by high-ranking state officials as well as pro-government media outlets and businessmen. Erdogan accuses supporters of the Hizmet movement of organizing "a coup attempt," referencing investigations into corruption and bribery in 2013 that implicated several Cabinet ministers, Erdogan's sons and pro-government businessmen.

    The seizure, the latest in a prolonged smear campaign against the bank, has drawn ire both domestically and internationally.

    [16] Turkish commentary views change undergone by Erdogan since 2001

    Under the title "Erdogan Has Lost Touch", Turkish daily Today's Zaman (01.06.15) published the following commentary by Sahin Alpay:

    "Three theories have been advanced to explain the astounding difference between Recep Tayyip Erdogan between 2001-2011 and after. Kemalists maintain that Erdogan II has revealed the Islamist agenda that Erdogan I had hidden. Liberals maintain he is a case of "power corrupts, absolute power corrupts absolutely."

    Psychologists and psychiatrists have claimed Erdogan's character or personality has changed. Dengir Mir Mehmet Firat, a Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP) candidate for Parliament, expressed the latter theory in its crudest form. Firat, who was a very close aide to Erdogan for many years, being a founding member and former deputy chairman of the Justice and Development Party (AKP), recently said Erdogan fears prosecution for the corruption scandal that even his family members are involved in and this has adversely affected his mental health and psychology. I do not know to what extent Firat's claim reflects the truth. Signs, however, that Erdogan has lost touch with reality are piling up. During the past week we witnessed two particularly visible signs.

    President Erdogan is speaking as though he is not a bit aware of the fact that the communications revolution has abolished national borders and that globalization has turned the world into a village. He speaks as though he has forgotten that Turkey is a founding member of the Council of Europe (CoE), a long-standing member of NATO and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and a candidate country negotiating membership in the European Union. Much worse, he speaks as though the concept of freedom of the press in a democracy has never found a place in his mind.

    The New York Times is surely a newspaper that is read all over the world and a most influential member of the international media. It published commending and supportive editorials about the AKP government in its first two terms of power. Commenting and warning Turkey's allies on the increasingly arbitrary and authoritarian rule by the AKP government, criticized by the entire opposition in Turkey, surely falls into the paper's area of interest. Erdogan's statements last week denouncing the paper not only confirms to the entire world that there are indeed "Dark clouds over Turkey," as the NYT editorial commented, but also deals a blow to the country's international esteem. International respect is not earned by sitting in lush palaces built illegally -- as confirmed by the latest decision of by the Council of State -- but by upholding the common values of democracies. I am indeed embarrassed at having to remind Turkey's president of this fact. [?]" TURKISH AFFAIRS SECTION

    (CS/ AM)

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