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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Cypriot and Turkish Media Review, 16-05-06
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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. 83/16 06.05.2016
[A] TURKISH CYPRIOT / TURKISH PRESS
[A] TURKISH CYPRIOT / TURKISH PRESS
 Davutoglu stepping down as Turkish PM AKP to hold snap congressTurkish Hurriyet Daily News (06.05.16) reports that Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu has announced his decision to leave the chairmanship of the Justice and Development Party (AKP) at an extraordinary convention on May 22, underlining that the real reason behind his departure was not his failure as premier but differences with his colleagues over principles.
"My term [as Prime Minister] was one of success. With this decision, there is no feeling of unsuccessfulness or regret over what I have done. I did my job properly and with honor," Davutoglu said at a press conference after the AKP's central-decision making body decided to hold an extraordinary convention on May 22.
"The fact that my term lasted far shorter than four years is not a decision of mine but a necessity," he said, hinting at recently surfaced in-house tension with President Recep Tayyip Erdogan as the main reason for his sudden departure. But Davutoglu vowed that he would not permit AKP opponents to weaken the government, instead calling on all his colleagues to stand united. "Our party is on the verge of a new era. This is the time of unity."
Davutoglu's farewell-like statement was full of emotion and a long summary of his 20 months as prime minister, as well as hints about the reason for his resignation despite his self-described success.
Davutoglu was careful in his remarks about the role of Erdogan in his resignation but blamed some of his party colleagues without naming them.
"I am of the opinion that a change in the party chairmanship would be much better than reshuffling the MYK [Central Decision-Making Body] of the AKP. That move would create more tension inside the party," he said.
Davutoglu explained that an in-house move that had removed his authority to appoint AKP provincial and district heads was the turning point in his decision to step aside, noting that he had been upset by the way the move was made.
It was right for many to question his decision to leave the chairmanship despite the fact that he was a successful Prime Minister who fulfilled all his pre-election promises on time, Davutoglu said. "Especially after six months of the elections in which our party received 49.5% of the votes and the support of 24 million voters. Why is the AKP's leader leaving while all three opposition leaders who lost the elections are still there?" he added.
"Well, why have I taken such a decision? Life teaches many things, but I have my principles that I have never left since my academic days," Davutoglu said. [?]
Davutoglu said he would continue to serve for the AKP as an ordinary MP and stressed that he would never become involved in any effort to undermine the unity of the party and he would never permit any plots against Erdogan.
"Whatever will happen, I will continue my relation with our President ? until my last breath. The honor of our President is my honor. His family is my family. No one should dare to initiate new plots," he said.
Erdogan handed the leadership of the AKP to Davutoglu on Aug. 28, 2014, asking him not to be a "trustee Prime Minister." "I followed this during my tenure ," Davutoglu said.
 Erdogan on Davutoglu's resignation: "It's his own decision"Turkish Milliyet newspaper (06.05.16) reports that Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan commented on Ahmet Davutoglu's resignation and said: "It's his own decision."
Erdogan said, "Let's hope for the best. He offered that suggestion. He said he would not run for leadership."
 Opposition leaders call resignation decision a 'coup'Turkish Hurriyet Daily News (06.05.16) reports that leaders of both the main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) and the Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP) have called the resignation decision of Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu a "coup" by President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
"Davutoglu's resignation should not be perceived as an internal party issue; all democracy supporters must resist this palace coup," Kilicdaroglu said at a news conference at his Republican People's Party (CHP) headquarters in Ankara.
"Mr. Davutoglu came to the prime ministry seat as a result of the nation's will but he was forced to leave it due to the will, not of the 23.5 million people who voted for him, but of one person," he said, calling his rival successful for winning two elections: one on June 7, 2015, which failed to produce a government, and the following one on Nov. 1, in which the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) swept almost half the country's votes.
Selahattin Demirtas, the co-chair of Kurdish-problem focused Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP), had similar criticism. "It is seen that even 99.9% homage is not enough for the palace," he said. "The people have elected you and the person at the palace wants to decide on who will rule this country. This is called a coup," Demirtas said. "What did Davutoglu say [before]? 'It is the people to decide who will run the country.' Come on and repeat it. Is it the people who elect or the one at the palace?" he asked.
Naci Bostanci, the vice-chair of the AKP's parliament group, explained that the unusual turn of events was no reason for panic. "We can understand the excitement in politics deriving from an extraordinary congress decision at the ruling party. However, this is not the first time a party has made such a decision," he said adding that "those who expect instability or crisis out of this will be disappointed.
Meanwhile, Sezgin Tanrikulu, a CHP Deputy and a former Deputy leader of the party, reacted to his leader's sympathy for Davutoglu.
 Who will take Davutoglu's position?Turkish Hurriyet Daily News (06.05.16) publishes an article by Abdulkadir Selvi who writes about the persons that may take the position of Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu, after his resignation yesterday.
"[?] Five names are now being uttered for the post-Davutoglu period: Bozdag, Yildirim, Energy Minister Berat Albayrak, Health Minister Mehmet Muezzinoglu and Deputy Prime Minister Numan Kurtulmus.
It is still not yet known which of these names President Erdogan will point out.
In the Erdogan?Davutoglu era, there was a "strong leader-hardworking prime minister" model. However, there will be a new model in the relationship between Erdogan and the person who takes Davutoglu's post.
Some suggest that a "technocratic" Prime Minister will be named, while others say "harmony" will be the dominant factor. The truth is that we will move to a de facto presidential system. [?]".
 Press Release of the Turkish Foreign Ministry regarding the legislative proposal of the European Commission about the visa Liberalization for Turkish CitizensThe Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs issued a press release regarding the legislative proposal of the European Commission about the visa liberalization for Turkish citizens. The statement is as follows:
"The EU Commission published today (4 May) the third progress report prepared in accordance with the Visa Liberalization Roadmap to enable Turkish citizens to travel within the Schengen area without visa.
The report points out that Turkey has made a considerable progress in a short time especially in terms of legislative achievements and operational measures and puts forward a legislative proposal to include Turkey in the list of "the Countries Exempted from the Schengen Visa" under the related EU Regulation.
In the aforementioned legislative proposal, the Commission communicated to the European Parliament and the EU Council that Turkey has made impressive progress, on addressing the Visa Liberalization Roadmap benchmarks and proposed the lifting of visa requirements for Turkish citizens to the Schengen area at the end of June 2016.
We welcome the report of the EU Commission. Due to the legislative proposal, the EU internal approval process has now begun for the decision on the visa-free travel for Turkish citizens. While the decision making process in the European Parliament and the EU Council will continue, in the meantime Turkey will maintain its efforts within the framework of the Roadmap.
This outcome which is a result of our decisive and dedicated efforts is satisfactory. Today, Turkish citizens are at the closest possible so far to visa-free travel to the EU. The visa-free travel of Turkish citizens to the EU will undoubtedly contribute to further deepen our economic and cultural ties. Visa liberalization will not only acquire a new dimension in our relations but also reinforce our multidimensional and half-century-old relations with the EU and the interaction and communication between the people of Turkey and the EU.
We wish that the approval process for the visa liberalization decision for Turkish citizens, initiated within the European Parliament and the EU Council will be completed successfully and visa requirements will be lifted in the Schengen area by the end of June 2016 as agreed during the third Turkey-EU Summit."
 Bozkir: "The lifting of visa requirements does not mean the recognition of the Greek Cypriot sector"Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (06.05.16) reports that Turkey's EU Minister Volkan Bozkir has voiced optimism for overcoming possible resistance at the European Parliament over approval of lifting visa requirements for Turkish citizens, after the European Commission said on May 4 that Ankara has met most of the necessary 72 criteria, inviting member states and EU lawmakers to endorse the move by June 30.
"The most difficult leg of this affair will be the European Parliament. The Commission's proposal will first go to the Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs. After their approval, it will go to the plenary. Every moment will require great effort. Perceptions at the Parliament, which we don't deserve, will have to be broken," Bozkir told reporters in Ankara on May 4.
He also recalled that he will be visiting Brussels and Strasbourg next week.
"We will meet with European Parliament President [Martin Schulz], some group leaders and influential parliamentarians. If we can explain some things to them by establishing a mechanism for the flow of information, then answers to questions that may arise will also be shaped. I believe there is no point that we cannot overcome," Bozkir said.
Meanwhile, Turkish daily Hurriyet (06.05.16) reports that Bozkir, in statements to Turkish journalists in Ankara, reiterated, that the lifting of visa requirements for the "Greek Cypriot sector" as he described the Republic of Cyprus does not mean its recognition.
Bozkir also said that Chapter 33 will definitely open by the end of June and before the end of the Presidency of the Netherlands.
Referring to the Cyprus negotiation talks, he said that the process continues and added that if the Cyprus problem is solved, in total 14 chapters will open for Turkey. "But, even if the Cyprus problem is not solved, the EU had promised to establish a mechanism and open them", Bozkir alleged, adding, that they watch closely the developments on the Cyprus problem.
 Akinci may be invited to the UN World Humanitarian Summit in IstanbulTurkish Cypriot daily Kibris (06.05.16) reports that Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci is expected to be invited in Turkey for the UN World Humanitarian Summit 2016 that will be held in Istanbul between 23-24 May, where Cyprus President Anastasiades will also attend.
Osman Kalfaoglu, writing in the paper, reports that Akinci may be invited by Turkey to participate in this summit. Citing diplomatic sources, Kalfaoglu reports that efforts are being carried out by Turkey in order Akinci to be invited in Istanbul, however, this has not been finalized yet.
Moreover, the paper reports that Turkey sent a special invitation to Greek Prime Minister Alexis Tsipras to attend the summit in person, adding that the Special Representative of the UN Secretary-General on Cyprus, Espen Barth Eide, will also be in Istanbul, but he will not attend the summit under his UN capacity.
The paper reports that the possibility is being born for a diplomatic mobility on the Cyprus issue, where the involved sides in the negotiation process will be in Istanbul during the UN summit.
The diplomatic sources argue that in case the Greek Cypriot political parties AKEL and DISI get above the 60% of the total vote in the parliamentary elections that will be held on May 22, Anastasiades will not object to hold diplomatic contacts on the Cyprus issue.
It will become clear in the coming days whether Akinci will be or not in Istanbul for the summit. The paper also reports that it is not the first time that the sides in Cyprus were invited in international summits hosted by Turkey.
 Akinci speaks on visa issueIllegal Bayrak television (05.06.16) broadcast that the Turkish Cypriot leader
Mustafa Akinci has said that "there could be no solution to the Cyprus problem that excludes the Turkish Cypriots".
Akinci evaluated the latest decision by Ankara to lift visa restrictions to EU citizens as well as the EU Commission's recommendation to the same for Turkish nationals wishing to travel to EU countries.
Pointing out that the visa issue was not something new and was a decision dating back to 2013, Akinci said that the correctness of decisions could sometimes be only understood after time has passed.
"As Turkey achieves progress in its EU membership process there will no doubt be actions or moves which will become inevitable. While Turkish football teams are prevented from playing friendship matches with Turkish Cypriot teams we have seen examples where Turkish teams play official matches with Greek Cypriot teams. So even though Turkey states that it does not recognize the Greek Cypriot side sometimes it is faced with such inevitable situations" he said.
Akinci added that the same dilemma applied for the visa issue.
"Even though Turkey does not recognize south Cyprus diplomatically it is forced to indirectly acknowledge its existence" he said, reminding that Greek Cypriots were previously allowed to enter Turkey on the condition that they paid a visa fee.
Akinci also said that as and when the new practice comes into force, Greek Cypriots will be able to travel to and from Turkey without a visa.
Also touching upon claims that the Turkish Cypriots were being sidelined and excluded from the solution process, Akinci said that the comments made were pure exaggeration as that a solution to the Cyprus problem without the consent and active involvement of the Turkish Cypriots was out of the question.
"A solution to the Cyprus problem is only possible through the joint consent of the stakeholders on the island. That is a solution is only possible through the consent of Turkish Cypriots and the Greek Cypriots via a referendum to be held on both sides" he added.
Akinci also stated that contrary to claims, the Turkish Cypriot side is the main actor at the negotiating table.
 TDP and SDP evaluated the visa issueTurkish Cypriot daily Vatan newspaper (06.05.16) reports on statements by the chairman of the Social Democracy Party (TDP) Cemal Ozyigit who stated, inter alia, that Turkey should undertake steps towards Cyprus in order to normalize its ties with the EU and progress. "The real normalization in Turkey's ties with the EU is only possible with a comprehensive, fair and viable solution of the Cyprus problem", he added.
In a written statement, Ozyigit evaluated the European Commission's proposal to lift the visa requirements for the citizens of Turkey and recalled that the decision envisages also that Turkish citizens will be able to travel visa-free to the "southern part" of Cyprus.
Ozyigit added that the recent developments prove once again the need and the importance of the solution of the Cyprus problem.
Ozyigit pointed out also that the return of the fenced off city of Varosha to its owners under the control of the UN, the opening of the illegal Tymbou airport for direct flights and of the occupied port of Famagusta for direct trade, and in parallel with these, the opening of Turkish ports and airports for the Republic of Cyprus vessels will reflect positively to the efforts for the solution of the Cyprus problem.
Ozyigit stressed also the need for the negotiation process to be intensified right after the parliamentary elections to be held in the Republic of Cyprus and reiterated their expectation for a fair and viable solution to the Cyprus problem to be found by the end of 2016.
Moreover, Turkish Cypriot daily Haberal Kibrisli (06.05.16) reports that the vice-chairman of the Social Democrat Party (SDP) Turgut Ceyda, evaluated in a written statement, Turkey's decision to lift visa requirement for all EU countries which are included in the Schengen zone, and described the decision as right.
Supporting that he considers that the officials of the Turkish government had evaluated well the political and economic advantages of such a decision, Ceyda added that the comments made on behalf of some Turkish Cypriots concerning "motherland-daughter land", are very natural.
 Sinirlioglu: it is our joint responsibility to determine the current stage of the negotiationsTurkish Cypriot daily Kibris newspaper (06.05.16) reports that Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci met yesterday with the Undersecretary of the Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Turkey, Feridun Sinirlioglu and his accompanied delegation, who is currently in the occupied area of the Republic of Cyprus. Sinirlioglu was also accompanied by the illegal Turkish "ambassador" to the occupied part of Nicosia Derya Kanbay.
During the meeting, the Turkish Cypriot negotiator Ozdil Nami, Akinci's spokesman Baris Burcu and Akinci's undersecretary Gurdal Hudaoglu were also present. No statement was issued prior or after the meeting.
Meanwhile, Sinirlioglu also visited the self-styled foreign minister of the breakaway regime Tahsin Ertugruloglu.
Speaking during the meeting, Ertugruloglu said that the open-ended negotiation process is not a healthy approach and added that "the result of the current negotiations process, in 2016 will either be a new partnership or it will become clear, once and for all, that this will never happen and we will look into what we can do in the future."
Ertugruloglu further said that the consultation of the "daughter land" (translator's note: he refers to the breakaway regime in the occupied area of the Republic of Cyprus) with the motherland (Turkey) to defend their joint national case in the ongoing Cyprus talks is natural. Claiming that the negotiation process has been continuing for 50 years, Ertugruloglu said that the Turkish Cypriots do not deserve to be exposed in such treatment.
Sinirlioglu, for his part, said that it is their joint responsibility to determine the current stage of the negotiations. He explained that he is in the "TRNC" to discuss the negotiation process and to congratulate the new "government".
 Talat: "Turkey's ties with the TRNC are not progressing well in recent years"Turkish Cypriot daily Yeni Duzen newspaper (05.06.16) reports that the chairman of the Republican Turkish Party-United Forces (CTP-BG) Mehmet Ali Talat, in statements to Kanal SIM, referred, inter alia, to their ties with Turkey and argued that Turkey's ties with "northern Cyprus" on the political level are not progressing well during the recent years. "The main responsibility for this belongs to Turkey due to its political approach", Talat said.
Referring to the establishment of the coalition "government" between the National Unity Party-Democratic Party (UBP-DP), Talat said that it is Turkey which gave the green light for this coalition to be and underlined that Turkey did not followed the tradition to visit the "TRNC" yet.
Commenting on the recent developments in Turkey after the crucial summit between Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu, and the decision of the latter not to be candidate for the AKP's leadership at the general congress to be held on May 22, Talat said that in spite of the fact that it is an internal issue of Turkey, it is very important the new formation to be in Turkey and how its ties will be with the "TRNC".
 Human remains were found by the CMP in the military zone in the occupied part of Agios DometiosTurkish Cypriot daily Kibris newspaper (06.05.16) reports that the Committee on Missing Persons (CMP) is continuing its exhumations in 7 areas in the north and 2 in the south with 9 different teams. The officials of the Turkish Cypriot member of the CMP discovered immediately findings in the exhumation that took place the previous day in the military zone in the occupied part of Agios Dometios. It is believed that the human remains belong to a Greek Cypriot or a Greek soldier.
 Turkish daily reports about the damage caused in occupied Pentadaktylos range mountains after stone quarriesUnder the title "The slaughter continues?, Turkish Cypriot daily Diyalog newspaper (06.05.16) reports about the damage that was created in occupied Pentadaktylos mountains due to the stone quarries works that take place for decades.
According to Diayalog, a European official that is not named stated to the paper that many complains were issued to the EU regarding Pentadaktylos and stated that if the same complains of an environmental catastrophe were taken place in an EU country, severe punishments would have been applied.
 Turkey's HDP, civil society launch campaign against lifting immunitiesTurkish Hurriyet Daily News (06.05.16) reports that more than 250 civil society organizations (CSOs), professional chambers and associations have released a joint declaration against a government-led bill which would strip some parliamentarians of their immunity from prosecution, with the Kurdish-problem-focused Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP), the main target of the bill, marking the declaration as a starter for a campaign against "the palace's coup."
The joint declaration was released on May 5 upon a call by the Peoples' Democratic Congress (HDK) and the Democratic Society Congress (DTK) with support from 254 CSOs from eastern and southeastern Turkey. TURKISH AFFAIRS SECTION