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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Cypriot and Turkish Media Review, 17-02-06

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 <http://www.pio.gov.cy/>

TURKISH CYPRIOT AND TURKISH MEDIA REVIEW No. 25/17 04-06.02.17

[A] TURKISH CYPRIOT / TURKISH PRESS

  • [01] Akinci: "Last chance for Cyprus"
  • [02] Akinci sends a letter to Siber on the Cyprus problem
  • [03] Burcu: The political equality is one of the fundamental principles of the solution
  • [04] "Criminals fleeing British justice can no longer use Cyprus as a safe haven"
  • [05] Morfou was not included in the map submitted by the Turkish Cypriot side in Geneva
  • [06] Ozyigit: Cooperation exists between pro-status quo forces in Turkey and the occupied area of Cyprus
  • [07] Arikli said that Ankara is not pleased with the "coalition government" of the breakaway regime
  • [08] Hakki Onen accused the Republic of Cyprus of "lack of sensitivity" on the extraction of criminals
  • [09] "Citizenship was granted to five more persons"
  • [10] Turkish Defense Minister urges dialogue with Greece amid escalating tension
  • [11] "A tough campaign ahead of Turkey's Erdogan"
  • [12] Results of two more opinion polls on the forthcoming referendum on the constitutional change
  • [13] Cavusoglu toured Latin America countries; He urged for further strategic cooperation
  • [14] A new tourism facility inaugurated in in occupied Komi Kepir village
  • [15] The breakaway regime's exports continued to decrease in 2016
  • [16] A delegation from Konya held contacts in the occupied area of Cyprus
  • [17] Big increase in the numbers of passengers from and to the breakaway regime
  • [18] The construction sector in the occupied area of Cyprus has taken dangerous dimensions

  • [A] TURKISH CYPRIOT / TURKISH PRESS

    [01] Akinci: "Last chance for Cyprus"

    Under the above title, Turkish daily Cumhuriyet newspaper (online, 05.02.17) published an interview with the Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci by saying "Our generation is making the last effort". Akinci said: "The Greek Cypriots will share with us the federal central government based on the political equality".

    Replying to the question whether the Turkish side has uneasiness, Akinci said: "We have been settled in the north of Cyprus for 43 years now. There are zones/issues that we have difficulty to share. There is separate chapter on the territorial adjustments on the negotiations that have been continuing since the late Rauf Denktas until today. Although you know that this will be discussed, there is a lot of pain on this issue".

    He further argued: "The Greek Cypriots have reservation on the issue of sharing with us. In case of a settlement, in the federal context, the state will be formed by the founding (constituent) states of both communities based on the political equality. They will share the federal central government with us based on the political equality. They will accept this and we will reach an agreement approximately to 29% on issue of territory on the context of the existing understanding. The inclination of the dominant opinion has been increased lately in the Greek Cypriot side. I do not share the view that 'they want 100% solution, everything to be completed". Because an agreement can be reached to 8-10 more elements/topics."

    Explaining that the Cyprus talks are continuing on the six fundamental chapters, Akinci noted within the six chapters there are 8 -10 important issues where a clear compromise could not been reached yet and in case a compromise is obtained on these matters, then there will be a referendum and the people will reveal with their votes whether they can saturate or not this agreement.

    Commenting on whether this time the Greek Cypriots will be more willing at the referendum; Akinci argued that "there is relatively more willing at the Greek Cypriot side now due to the economic crisis. They entered solitary in the EU, they converted to euro, but they have not solved their problems by joining the EU. (...) The number of people, who realize that they cannot take something by being enemies forever to important countries like Turkey, has been increased. The businessmen have formed joint platforms with Turkish Cypriots, Greeks and Turkish. They have started to see more clearly the new possibilities that friendship with Turkey will bring."

    Referring to the issue of security and guarantees, Akinci said that this issue is not an issue which interests only the two communities and added: "There are five sides on this, two communities and three guarantor countries. For this reason, the five-part Cyprus Conference was convened in Geneva. If there is not a settlement, then international treaties will be continued. No one can change these treaties unilaterally. When the Greek Cypriot side said 'I don't like this', these treaties could not be vanished. ()"

    Akinci further said that if there is an agreement, both they and Turkey aim to change the number of the Turkish troops that will remain in the island and added: "Under the Treaty of Alliance in 1960, there were 650 Turkish soldiers and 950 Greek ones. This number may be higher, may be more different. Regarding the guarantees, our interlocutors should understand that the Turkish Cypriots do not see anywhere else than Turkey their security. As they say to us 'there will be the EU, this is enough for the security'. The EU does not have such mechanism yet".

    Asked if there is a plan B on the issue of army, Akinci said that he thinks that there is an atmosphere that they can reach an agreement on plan A, which is a reasonable plan. He explained that there is the treaty of alliance, reiterating that the presence of the Turkish army is very important for them.

    Finally, Akinci explained how the new political system will be functioned in case of a Cyprus settlement.

    (DPs)

    [02] Akinci sends a letter to Siber on the Cyprus problem

    Under the title "Historic letter", Turkish Cypriot daily Havadis newspaper (06.02.17) reports that Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci replied with a letter to the concerns expressed by Sibel Siber, "speaker" of the "assembly" of the breakaway regime in the occupied area of Cyprus. The letter describes the stage at which the negotiations have reached.

    In the letter Akinci noted that the cross-voting and the weighted voting will be valid only during the presidential elections at a federal level and added that implementing the weighted voting during the elections of the founding states is out of the question. He said that the persons who will have the right of "legal residence" will be able to vote only during the local elections (for municipalities and communal councils) and that this political right will not exceed 20% [of the Turkish Cypriot population]. He argued also that the elections which will concern the executive and legislative power of the founding state will be held on the basis of the "internal citizenship".

    Recalling that in the 1960 Constitution, the President of the Republic and the Vice President had the right of veto only on issues in the fields of external policy, defense and security, Akinci said that in the "new structure" the joint approval of the President and the Vice President will be needed for taking decisions in these three fields. Moreover, he noted, because the Turkish Cypriot side supports that all decisions of the Council of Ministers should jointly be signed by the President and the Vice President before entering into force, the positive view of the Turkish Cypriot Vice President or President will definitely exist in these decisions.

    According to the letter, "serious progress" was achieved in the Governance and Power Sharing. It was agreed that: 1) The Council of Ministers will consist of seven Greek Cypriots and four Turkish Cypriots, 2) There will be numerical equality in the Senate, the High Court and the Public Service Committee, 3) There will be numerical equality in the Council for Citizenship and Migration, 4) There will be numerical equality in the federal regulative half-judiciary committees, and 5) There will be participation of at least one third by each founding state at every level in the federal public service.

    Akinci's letter noted also that agreement to a great extend has been reached on the issue of the properties which fall into the scope of the properties to be returned. These properties are the following: 1) The properties used as places of religious worship between 1963 and 1974, 2) The military zones which will be evacuated, 3) The properties which have not been allocated, 4) The new forest lands, and 5) The houses which could be returned in the "sentimental bond" category (the letter said that there has been no agreement yet on this issue).

    (I/Ts.)

    [03] Burcu: The political equality is one of the fundamental principles of the solution

    Turkish Cypriot daily Ortam newspaper (06.02.17) reports that Baris Burcu, spokesman of the Turkish Cypriot leader, has argued that one of the fundamental principles of the solution of the Cyprus problem is the political equality of the Turkish Cypriot "people", just like their freedom and security. In a written statement, Burcu said that they will never sign an agreement which does not include the political equality, the security and the freedom of the Turkish Cypriot "people".

    Burcu alleged that the effective participation of the Turkish Cypriots in the decisions and the rotating presidency are elements of the political equality, which are not negotiable.

    Claiming that the Greek Cypriot side should be prepared for these "realities", Burcu alleged that he observes with sorrow that instead of the Greek Cypriot community to be prepared for a federal solution, behaviors which prepare the ground for the opposite situation are continuing. "It is very clear that this does not contribute to the efforts for a federal solution based on the political equality of the two founding states", he claimed.

    Also, under the title "Deadlock for the rotating presidency", Turkish Cypriot daily Halkin Sesi newspaper (06.02.17) refers to statements made by the Government Spokesman Nikos Christodoulides who has reportedly said that "we do not think that the rotating presidency is necessary for the political equality". The paper argues that the above statement caused tension between the sides. Referring to Burcu's statements, Halkin Sesi notes that the response by the Turkish Cypriot side on the issue came without delay.

    (I/Ts.)

    [04] "Criminals fleeing British justice can no longer use Cyprus as a safe haven"

    Under the title "A historic decision by the British court", Turkish Cypriot daily Havadis newspaper (05.02.16) reported that the British High Court judges have ruled a landmark decision by not stopping British police to co-operate with the "police" of the breakaway regime in the occupied area of the Republic of Cyprus with law-enforcement agencies.

    According to the ruling, fugitives who refuse to return to Britain to face trial can be prosecuted in "Northern Cyprus" (translator's note: the occupied area of the Republic of Cyprus) instead.

    The paper republished the article by daily Telegraph, reporting that 60-year-old businessman, Hasan Akarcay, who is suspected of involvement in serious drugs crime and fled the UK for "Northern Cyprus" in 2006, will be prosecuted in "Northern Cyprus" now after the results of the UK investigation were passed on to the breakaway regime in the occupied area of the Republic of Cyprus.

    The paper further reported the following: "Akarcay's legal team took the case to the High Court, where they claimed the passing of evidence and assistance to 'Turkish Cyprus' was illegal. His lawyers argued that co-operating amounted to an 'act of recognition' by the UK of Northern Cyprus. That was illegal, because it breached the terms of repeated UN Security Council resolutions, they claimed. But rejecting the challenge, Lord Justice Burnett said there was no duty in UK law upon the Government to refrain from recognising Northern Cyprus."

    On the same issue, the paper reports that the Cyprus government was puzzled on the issue and refused to make any comments.

    (DPs)

    [05] Morfou was not included in the map submitted by the Turkish Cypriot side in Geneva

    Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris Postasi newspaper (04.02.17) reported that Morfou was not included in the map submitted by the Turkish Cypriot side at the Geneva talks and noted that Morfou is a big obstacle for the successful outcome of the Cyprus negotiation.

    Citing high level sources, the paper wrote that at the map submitted by the Turkish Cypriot side, according to which the Turkish Cypriot founding state will consist of 29,2%, Morfou is not included. At the same time Morfou as well as some villages of the Karpassia area are included in the map submitted by the Greek Cypriot side which provides that the Turkish Cypriot founding state will consist of 28,2%. The paper wrote that many investments were made in Morfou after the 2004 Anan Plan and added that the area is a red line issue for the Greek Cypriot side.

    Citing the same sources the paper wrote that the date of the new meeting that will take place in Geneva in March has not been determined yes. However a possible date could be the period between 5-10 of March.

    (CS)

    [06] Ozyigit: Cooperation exists between pro-status quo forces in Turkey and the occupied area of Cyprus

    Turkish Cypriot daily Havadis newspaper (06.02.17) reports that Cemal Ozygit, chairman of the Social Democracy Party (TDP), has commented on the criticism against Turkish Cypriot leader Akinci by Turkey's main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) and argued that the ground for finding a solution in Cyprus was created during the past one and a half year, something which is achieved by Akinci and his team.

    In statements to the paper, Ozyigit said that the forces in Turkey and the occupied area of Cyprus, which do not want the status quo to be changed, are cooperating. Ha added: "Especially there is criticism in Turkey by the CHP in a manner we do not wish for. How it is possible for a social democratic party to oppose to the solution? We really find it difficult to understand this, to realize this".

    Ozyigit said that the map providing for 29,2% on the territory for the Turkish Cypriot side has been submitted after "working together with Turkey and in the direction of common views".

    (I/Ts.)

    [07] Arikli said that Ankara is not pleased with the "coalition government" of the breakaway regime

    Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris newspaper (06.02.17) reports that Erhan Arikli, the chairman of the settler's party, the Revival Party (YDP) said that Ankara does not want the "coalition government" of the National Unity Party and of the Democratic Party because it did not fulfill its promises and tried to balance the "budget" by applying news taxes.

    Arikli, who was speaking during a tour in various occupied villages, stated that an indication of the fact that the Turkish Government is not pleased with the "coalition government", is the fact that the Deputy Prime Minister Tugrul Turkes postponed a meeting he was scheduled to hold with "deputy prime minister" Serdar Denktas.

    (CS)

    [08] Hakki Onen accused the Republic of Cyprus of "lack of sensitivity" on the extraction of criminals

    Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris Postasi newspaper (06.02.17) reports that the Co-chair of the Bio-communal Technical Committee on Crime and Criminal Matters, Hakki Onen reacted over the "lack of sensitivity" by the "Greek Cypriot administration", as the Republic of Cyprus is called, on the issue of extradition of criminals.

    Onen stated to the paper, that the Greek Cypriots consider that "if they proceed to the extradition of criminals, this would mean that they recognize the TRNC or that the TRNC's status will be upgraded". He further stated that as a lawyer, he does not wish to see the criminals not being punished and argued that the Greek Cypriot side does not have the same approach.

    Recalling that the Turkish Cypriots have asked for 19 offenders who fled to the "south" to be handed over, since as he added the majority of them are facing charges related with drugs, Onen said that the Republic of Cyprus refuses to extradite them supporting that they have not committed any crime.

    Referring to the case of the 33-years old person with the initiatives B.P who is facing charges for sexual assault on a child, Onen explained that this person escaped to Germany from the Republic of Cyprus and added that the Greek Cypriot police have not provided any help to them to assist to his arrestment.

    Also, referring to the two suspects that killed George Henry Low in Ayia Napa during the summer, Onen explained that the one of them has not being expelled from the "TRNC", as it was announced, while the second suspect as he said is still under custody in prison.

    (AK)

    [09] "Citizenship was granted to five more persons"

    Turkish Cypriot daily Havadis newspaper (05.02.17) reports that the following five persons were "granted" the "TRNC citizenship", according to a "decision by the council of ministers" on February 1, 2017:

    Adil Uslu, born in Antakya, 1995

    Suphi Asi, born in Reyhanli, 1976

    Gokhan Ekenel, born in Altinozu, 1995

    Serkan Baser, born in Mersin, 1983

    Selin Gungern, born in the occupied part of Lefkosia, 1996

    (DPs)

    [10] Turkish Defense Minister urges dialogue with Greece amid escalating tension

    Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (05.02.17) reported that the Turkish Defense Minister Fikri Is?k on February 5 called on Greece to solve the problems between the two neighbors through dialogue amid escalating tensions between the two NATO allies.

    Is?k stated that the neighboring countries should work together to solve their problems, while adding that "provocative statements" of his Greek counterpart, Panos Kammenos, must end.

    "Of course there are problems that haven't been solved until today. But the solution to these problems are not to challenge, but to continue exploratory talks regarding the problems," said Is?k during a ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) meeting in Turkey's northwestern province of Kocaeli on February 5.

    "This is not in favor of Greece," said Is?k, referring to Kammenos' "provocative statements."

    "In recent days, we have sadly been watching the Greek Defense Minister who made extremely unfounded and irresponsible statements. His statements and actions are irresponsible and provocative, therefore, I condemn him," he said.

    "Turkey and Greece need to solve their regional problems by sitting down and talking. As Turkey, this is our attitude. Therefore we do not accept anyone making irresponsible and provocative statements," he added.

    ()

    [11] "A tough campaign ahead of Turkey's Erdogan"

    In a commentary under the above title, columnist Murat Yetkin in Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (06.02.17) writes the following: "There was an important meeting between President Tayyip Erdogan and Prime Minister Binali Y?ld?r?m in Istanbul on February 5.

    There are a number of high-priority issues in the dossiers of the two from the ongoing military operation in Syria to the prospective one in Iraq, and from the tension with Greece over the Aegean to the growing headache with the Donald Trump administration in the United States.

    But the highest priority for Turkish leaders these days is possibly the April referendum over the constitutional shift to the executive presidential system.

    The two met for three hours last week, apart from a National Security Board (MGK) meeting and an opening ceremony in the southern province of Mersin, and it was reported that the main issue of that three-hour meeting was the referendum.

    The "yes" campaign of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and the ruling Justice and Development Party (AK Parti) is expected to start tomorrow on February 7, and all indications show that it is going to be a difficult one for them. And that is not because of the strength of the already fragmented "no" campaigners. It is because of the uncertainties within the "yes" camp.

    If it weren't for the support of Devlet Bahceli, the leader of the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP), Erdogan could not have brought the issue to Parliament at all and asked for Y?ld?r?m to conduct the process. After all, the new Constitution if approved by popular vote will weaken Parliament against the President and will abolish the Prime Ministry all together. And because the President can also become the party chair, there will be no chair left for Y?ld?r?m. Thanks to Bahceli, Erdogan managed to exceed the three-fifths hurdle in parliament to succeed in taking it to a referendum.

    But that support has caused a deepening rift within the MHP. Some influential NGOs that have been working as grassroots organizations for the MHP, like the youth organization Ulku Ocaklar?, and the public employees union Kamu-Sen have publicly announced that will say "no."

    There are reports in the Turkish press from the political backstage that Erdogan is not very comfortable with this situation. According to backstage information, Erdogan wishes to see a cabinet reshuffle after the referendum and wants to appoint a few MHP-origin names as Ministers as if it is an AK Party-MHP coalition if the Constitution is approved. And not only Cabinet Ministers, some influential public positions, from provincial governors to the top of the judicial and the security apparatus, might be given to figures known to be loyal to Bahceli if the Constitution is approved.

    It may be good for AK Parti leaders if such news spreads in order to attract undecided MHP votes and created hope among them that they will become an unofficial government partner, which could entail positions, jobs and similar government opportunities for them.

    On the other hand, such close cooperation with the MHP is reportedly creating fault lines within the AK Parti. It's not just Kurdish voters of the party, the traditional religious-conservative old guard is also not very happy at being tied to the MHP, the strongest voice of Turkish nationalism. The on-and-off arrest of the MPs of the Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP), which is focused on the Kurdish problem, due to their alleged links mostly through the speeches they delivered with the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) is a matter of concern for the Kurdish-origin MPs of the AK Parti regarding their own grassroots.

    A campaign started by Y?ld?r?m that the social democratic main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) is working hand in hand with the PKK and even the secret network of Fethullah Gulen, the Islamist preacher living in the U.S. who is accused of masterminding the July 2016 coup, has not gained much traction, despite being repeated by almost all Ministers.

    The government is trying to please voters as much as possible with incentives such as decreasing taxes for buying houses and household goods until the end of April, which, coincidentally or not, is the month of the referendum.

    A campaign to make public calls on social media to two more people to "say yes for a stronger Turkey" has turned into a fiasco in a few days. Y?ld?r?m called it "meddlesomeness" on Feb. 4 without hiding his displeasure. A deputy chair of the AK Parti, Mustafa Atas, chided supporters at a party meeting the same day in the western town of Sakarya because half of the hall left the meeting before his address to them.

    Erdogan is not the type of politician to give in quickly; he always has a few rabbits in his hat and a few trumps that he can play at the very last minute.

    From a massive operation against the PKK in northern Iraq, in coordination with the Iraqi government, to an urgent AK Party congress right after the referendum, a wide spectrum of options are reportedly on the table.

    It is also possible that Erdogan might send one or two articles of the Constitution back to Parliament, including some of the most controversial ones (like the right to call for early elections, appoint high judges, issue decrees bypassing Parliament or decrease the age for candidacy to 18) so as to soften the reactions on the "yes" camp.

    Kemal K?l?cdaroglu, the leader of the CHP, recently said on CNN Turk that they would not target Erdogan personally during the campaign and not even carry party flags in their "no" rallies, but would instead try and tell people that they were against the system shift because one-man rule with weak checks and balances "wouldn't be good for Turkey."

    It seems the referendum campaign might be one of the most important turning points for Erdogan, if not the most important one".

    [12] Results of two more opinion polls on the forthcoming referendum on the constitutional change

    Turkish daily Sabah (03.02.17) reported that according to a recent survey, conducted by MAK Consulting Company, nearly 60% of the public will be supporting the proposed constitutional changes in the upcoming referendum, which is expected to be held in early April.

    The recent survey claims that 59.8% of Turkish public opinion will be in favor of the amendment package, foreseeing a presidential system that has already been approved in Parliament.

    The latest survey of public sentiment on the referendum to introduce a presidential system claims its approval is virtually guaranteed, thanks to the continued majority-support for the ruling AK Party

    When the survey participants were asked which party they would vote for in a possible general election, more than 50% of the participants indicated that they would vote for the Justice and Development Party (AK Party). Whereas the ruling AK Party gained 52% of the participants' support, the main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) 25% support and the opposition Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) received 12% support in a possible general election.

    The survey further revealed that the pro-PKK Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP) would not pass the electoral threshold that is necessary to gain seats in Parliament. The MAK Company conducted face-to-face interview surveys with 5,400 participants throughout 30 provinces between January 26 and February 1, asking the participants about their preferences in the possible election.

    In the light of the survey, 52% of the participants feel that they are well enough informed regarding the constitutional amendment package and its contexts, whereas 34%of the participants indicated that they had little information about the constitutional change and 14% are indecisive.

    ()

    Meanwhile, Turkish daily Cumhuriyet newspaper (04.02.17) reported that the chairman of the "administration board" of Gezici Research Company in Turkey, Murat Gezici has announced in a televised program broadcast by Tele 1 TV, the results of the recent opinion poll conducted by the company in 21 different provinces across Turkey.

    According to Murat Gezici, replying to the question "What will be your choice if you go to vote to a referendum?", 41.2% of the participants said that will vote in favor of "yes" and 58.2% in favor of "no".

    (AK)

    [13] Cavusoglu toured Latin America countries; He urged for further strategic cooperation

    Turkish daily Sabah (06.02.17) reports that Turkey's Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu finalized his five-day official visit to Latin America and the Caribbean last week by drawing attention to the necessity of strategic cooperation with the states in the region.

    Cavusoglu traveled to Argentina, Paraguay and the Dominican Republic as well as Mexico, emphasizing the importance of the respective regions for Turkey in an article he penned for the Latin media organizations Clarin, Excelsior and Acento.

    The Ministerial visit comes one year after President Recep Tayyip Erdogan visited the region in February 2016, accompanied by approximately 100 businessmen to underline the importance of bilateral cooperation with Latin American countries.

    Under the auspices of this, Foreign Minister Cavusoglu's Mexican counterpart Luis Videgaray said during the latest visit that the two governments have already held seven rounds of talks and are planning to meet again in the coming weeks, adding that Turkey and Mexico "have agreed to give a faster incentive to the search for an agreement."

    Foreign Minister Cavusoglu echoed these remarks, saying that Turkey wants to "intensify talks" on free trade with Mexico, while also proposing measures to strengthen the Mexico, Indonesia, the Republic of Korea, Turkey and Australia (MIKTA) forum.

    Cavusoglu asserted that, "Together, we [Turkey and Mexico] will invest further efforts into making this forum more effective, more transparent and more focused on relevant political issues."

    As part of his five-day tour, Cavusoglu informed reporters of the 13 Embassies and one Consulate Office currently operating out of Latin America and the Caribbean. "We [Turkey] need to strengthen our level of shared management around the world. Turkey, Brazil and Mexico have already become strategic partners [and] in addition to signing a Free Trade Agreement with Chile, we have finalized efforts to sign the same agreements with Mexico, Columbia, Peru and Ecuador," he said.

    Meanwhile, Turkey and the Dominican Republic agreed to boost cooperation on tourism, with Cavusoglu saying at a joint press conference with his Dominican counterpart Miguel Vargas last week that the agreement aims to increase the flow of tourists in the country. "Our political, economic and cultural cooperation and continuing dialogue with Latin America and the Caribbean are increasing more each day," Cavusoglu asserted.

    [14] A new tourism facility inaugurated in in occupied Komi Kepir village

    Under the title "2017 will be a year of investments", Turkish Cypriot daily Gunes newspaper (06.02.17) reports that the so-called prime minister Huseyin Ozgurgun participated in the opening ceremony of "The Pine View" tourism facilities which is located in a 80 donum area in occupied Komi Kepir village.

    According to the paper, the facilities consist of 55-bed bungalows, zoo, pools, bicycles road, and a playground area.

    Speaking during the ceremony, Ozgyrgun claimed that 2017 will be a good year for investments in the breakaway regime.

    (CS)

    [15] The breakaway regime's exports continued to decrease in 2016

    Turkish Cypriot daily Yeni Duzen newspaper (05.02.17) reported that the decrease observed in the exports of the breakaway regime in the occupied area of Cyprus in 2015 continued in 2016. According to the statistical report of the "department of commerce" on the exports, the regime's exports in 2016 decreased by 13% and fell to 95 million dollars from 110 million in 2015.

    The data show that 66% of the exports are directed to Turkey, 6% to the European Union, 22,9% to Middle East countries, and the rest to other European and Far East countries.

    The chairman of the Turkish Cypriot "chamber of industry", Ali Cirali told the paper that decrease was observed in the exports of halloumi and cheese, which are on the top of the list exported by the regime. Cirali argued that the decrease derives from the incidents happening in Turkey.

    Meanwhile, Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris newspaper (06.02.17) reports that according to data issued by Turkey's exporters' council (TIM), the imports of the breakaway regime from Turkey decreased by 0,48% in 2016 comparing to 2015 and fell to 850 million 945 thousand and 820 dollars. The paper notes that this number equals to 2,3 million dollars per day. When holidays are not included, the daily imports from Turkey exceed 3,2 million dollars.

    (I/Ts.)

    [16] A delegation from Konya held contacts in the occupied area of Cyprus

    According to illegal Bayrak television (04.02.17) a delegation from the Konya Chamber of Commerce is in the "TRNC" for a series of contacts.

    The delegation met on Friday with the Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci and the so-called prime minister Huseyin Ozgurgun.

    The 86 person-team was headed by the President of the Konya Chamber of Commerce Memis Kutukcu.

    No statement was issued after the courtesy visit to Ak?nc?.

    Meanwhile, the delegation also met with the so-called prime minister Huseyin Ozgurgun. So-called minister of economy and energy, Sunat Atun was also present at the meeting.

    Speaking during the meeting, Kutukcu stated, inter alia, that they aimed to develop relations between Konya and the "TRNC", adding, that they had started a series of initiatives aimed at launching direct flights from Konya to the "TRNC".

    Ozgurgun for his part said that his "government" attached great importance to developing relations with the people of Anatolia in all fields.

    He alleged that an unbreakable and special bond exist between "motherland" Turkey and the Turkish Cypriot "people".

    [17] Big increase in the numbers of passengers from and to the breakaway regime

    Under the title: "A record of the last 42 years", Turkish Cypriot daily Diyalog newspaper (04.02.17) reported that 25,000 flights took place at the illegal Tympou airport during the last 11 months and 3,362,071 passengers were transported.

    The paper noted that despite the various terrorist attacks around the world and the July 15 coup that took place in Turkey, there was a big increase of the persons that travelled from and to the breakaway regime.

    Citing official sources the paper wrote that during the 12 months of 2015, 3, 457,000 travelled to and from the breakaway regime. During the 11 months of 2016, this number was 3,362,071 persons. In this number December of 2016 is not included and if is considered then the number of the persons that travelled in 2016 will overcome those of 2015, according to Diyalog.

    (CS)

    [18] The construction sector in the occupied area of Cyprus has taken dangerous dimensions

    Turkish Cypriot daily Haberal Kibrisli newspaper (05.02.17) reported that the chairman of the "Turkish Cypriot sub-contractors union", Osman Amca in exclusive statements to the paper, has said that the problem exist in the "TRNC" in the construction sector has taken dangerous dimensions, since, as he added the identity of the persons who construct buildings is unknown.

    "The construction sector has taken dangerous dimensions. It is not clear who is the constructor of those buildings. The under construction buildings are more than the necessary. The under-construction buildings are triplicated compared with the annual needs and it is unknown who builds these constructions", Amca said.

    (AK) TURKISH AFFAIRS SECTION

    http://www.pio.gov.cy

    (AK / AM)


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