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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Cypriot and Turkish Media Review, 17-02-13

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. 30/17 11-13.02.17

[A] TURKISH CYPRIOT / TURKISH PRESS

  • [01] Kalin: "Erdogan underscored that Turkey is expected to support the negotiations for a fair and enduring solution in Cyprus"
  • [02] Yildirim: "Any new administration there should be just and the two communities, Turkish and Greek, must be equally represented"
  • [03] Akinci to attend the 20th Eurasian Economic Summit in Istanbul
  • [04] Akinci: "Greek Cypriot Parliament's decision is a serious blow to the efforts for solution"
  • [05] Self-styled assembly condemned the Cyprus House of Representatives' decision to celebrate "Enosis referendum" in schools
  • [06] Ozgurgun argued that the decision of the Cyprus Parliament on the 1950 Enosis referendum is a severe blow to the ongoing Cyprus talks
  • [07] Akinci met with British MP
  • [08] The Turkish EU Minister alleges that the Turkish army protects peace in Cyprus
  • [09] Ozgurgun' statements about occupied Morfou
  • [10] Bahceli: "A global climate has been created for surrendering Cyprus to the Greek Cypriots"
  • [11] Ercakica alleges that the Turkish side's principle that the map cannot be discussed without achieving political equality was abolished
  • [12] Columnist argues that Turkish citizens in the occupied area are at least 120,000, while Greek citizens in the government-controlled area are mostly 20,000
  • [13] Ataoglu replied to the Russian Ambassador's comments
  • [14] Ataoglu's interview to Hurriyet Daily News on tourism
  • [15] Saner held contacts in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
  • [16] Information on the population of the breakaway regime from 1974-2014
  • [17] The occupation regime changed the working hours of the "public sector"
  • [18] The "KTSO" attended a fair in Berlin
  • [19] Celik: "'Erdoganophobia' exists in Europe"
  • [20] Turkey seeks business opportunities in Gulf nations
  • [21] President Erdogan approved charter draft, referendum on April 16
  • [22] Cavusoglu: "No Turkish journalist arrested for writing stories"
  • [23] HDP co-leader faces jail over 'insulting' President Erdogan

  • [A] TURKISH CYPRIOT / TURKISH PRESS

    [01] Kalin: "Erdogan underscored that Turkey is expected to support the negotiations for a fair and enduring solution in Cyprus"

    According to Turkish daily Sabah newspaper (online, 11.02.17), President Recep Tayyip Erdogan highlighted the need for reform within the United Nations, especially its Security Council body, to work more effectively for global peace and stability, while speaking with U.N. Secretary-General Antonio Guterres in Istanbul on Saturday.

    Erdogan and U.N. Chief Guterres, who paid his first official bilateral visit to Turkey, came to an agreement on the necessary steps regarding counterterrorism. Erdogan pointed out that remarkable changes should be enforced within the Security Council to maintain peace in the globe.

    After the meeting, Presidential spokesman Ibrahim Kalin released a written statement. "Guterres proposed to work together to achieve a political solution. Views were exchanged regarding the fight against terror. Steps, needed to be taken in this context, were agreed upon," Kalin said.

    Referring to Cyprus Kalin said: "President Erdogan underscored that Turkey is expected to support the negotiations and ensure a solution in Cyprus, while a two-state solution for Palestine was also agreed upon".

    [02] Yildirim: "Any new administration there should be just and the two communities, Turkish and Greek, must be equally represented"

    According to Turkish daily Yeni Safak newspaper (online in English, 11.02.17), Turkey's Prime Minister Binali Yildirim on Friday once again urged the world to do its fair share to help solve problems in the region.

    Reiterating that Turkey is hosting 3 million refugees without much support from other countries and the entire world is aware, Yildirim at a joint news conference with UN Chief Antonio Guterres said: "We want everybody to accept their responsibilities and not to be stingy on sharing burdens to end the problems in this region".

    Turning to the Cyprus talks, Yildirim said that any new administration there should be just and the two communities, Turkish and Greek, must be equally represented.

    Yildirim said he was happy to host the new Secretary General on one of his first foreign visits as the President Erdogan again called for extensive UN reform.

    Guterres had high praise for Turkey's efforts to deal with the millions of refugees pouring into its country. He stressed that Turkey is effectively handling the situation single-handedly at a time when other countries are closing their borders and walking away from responsibility.

    On the Cyprus issue, Guterres said that the UN is in service to the two communities and the guarantor states stand ready to support a solution accepted by everyone.

    [03] Akinci to attend the 20th Eurasian Economic Summit in Istanbul

    Under the title "5 presidents to attend key economic summit in Istanbul", Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News newspaper (online, 13.02.17) reported that "some 40 countries and five presidents will attend the 20th Eurasian Economic Summit, a prestigious gathering organized by The Marmara Group Foundation in international arena. The summit 'Humanity at a Crossroads' will be held between April 4 and 6 in Istanbul".

    The "presidents" of Albania, Montenegro, Bosnia Herzegovina, "Turkish Cyprus" (editor's note: the breakaway regime in the occupied area of the Republic of Cyprus) and "Macedonia" are expected to attend the 20th Eurasian Economic Summit in Istanbul between April 4 and 6, which is being organized by The Marmara Group Foundation.

    The summit will host Albanian President Bushar Nishani, Montenegrin President Filip Vujanovic, Bosnian President Mladen Ivanic, Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci and FYROM President Gjorge Ivanov.

    Former presidents of Croatia, Latvia, Moldova, Nigeria, Romania and Serbia will also attend the summit's "Contemporary Sagacious Men" session.

    The European Parliament, United Nations, Organization of Islamic Cooperation, the European Bank for Reconstruction and Development (EBRD), the Vienna Economic Forum, the Academy of Sciences of Moldova, the Slavyani Foundation and Slovenia Life Learning Academy have said they will attend the summit too, where Azerbaijan, Afghanistan, Bosnia Herzegovina, Morocco, Kosovo and Romania will also attend on a ministerial level as well.

    [04] Akinci: "Greek Cypriot Parliament's decision is a serious blow to the efforts for solution"

    Turkish Cypriot daily Star Kibris newspaper (12.02.17) with the above title reports that Turkish Cypriot leader condemned the decision by the Cyprus House of Representatives regarding the commemoration of the enosis referendum in public schools, describing it as a severe blow to the efforts for solution in Cyprus.

    In a written statement issued on Saturday, Akinci said: "I regret and condemn the Greek Cypriot Parliament's decision to introduce an annual commemoration in public schools of the 1950 enosis referendum in the year 2017.

    Even if the decision was proposed by ELAM, it is known that DISY voted in the committee. Moreover, only AKEL rejected the decision in the General Assembly while Disy abstained from voting.

    Although the Parliament's decision was taken with 19 votes only, it can jeopardize the efforts for a solution in Cyprus.

    During a time when Cyprus negotiation process has entered the final phase of the end, we are trying to set a date for the 2nd 5 party conference (on Cyprus), attempts to keep ENOSIS alive through a decision of the Greek Cypriot Parliament are not acceptable.

    This very dangerous message given to the Greek Cypriot youth with this decision will only serve to deepen the already existing mistrust among the Turkish Cypriots.

    Greek Cypriot leader Nicos Anastasiades should publicly oppose the decision and revoke the said decision adopted with the joint action of DISY-which purports to support a federal solution in Cyprus- and AKEL."

    [05] Self-styled assembly condemned the Cyprus House of Representatives' decision to celebrate "Enosis referendum" in schools

    According to illegal Bayrak television (online, 13.02.17), all political parties represented in "parliament" as well as the independent "deputies" have expressed their strong reaction to the decision taken by the Cyprus House of Representatives to introduce the 1950 'Enosis Day' in schools in the government controlled area of Cyprus.

    A unanimous declaration was issued in "parliament" today condemning the move and calling upon the UN to launch an initiative for the decision to be retracted by the Cyprus Parliament.

    The declaration which was read out by the self-styled speaker of parliament Sibel Siber argued that historical meaning of Enosis, which ignored the Turkish Cypriot existence and identity on the island, was well known by all.

    The declaration stated that the Turkish Cypriot "people", despite having lived through the bitter experiences of the past, have always supported a settlement that will ensure that these experiences are not relived.

    "The Turkish Cypriot people voted in favour of the Annan Plan and has since kept its will for a settlement alive" the declaration read, claiming that the "TRNC parliament", "in line with the people's will, has continually supported a settlement, adopting numerous resolutions in support of a solution on the basis of UN parameters".

    "The latest of such resolutions was the 11th of February 2014 Joint Declaration which was approved by both leaders" it read.

    The declaration stated also that the latest decision adopted by the Cyprus Parliament to mark the 1950 Enosis Plebiscite at Greek Cypriot schools (editor's note: public schools in the government controlled area of Cyprus), was in direct contradiction with the 11th of February 2014 Joint Declaration as well as the ongoing Cyprus negotiations process.

    "It must be known that this decision has been perceived as an act of disrespect to the main philosophy of the negotiations, has deepened Turkish Cypriot peoples' mistrust and raise doubts regarding the Greek Cypriot Side's intention and goodwill towards reaching a settlement on the basis of UN parameters" the declaration read.

    The declaration also condemned the decision in the presence of the UN, urging it to launch an initiative to persuade the Greek Cypriot side from retracting the decision which it described was a historical mistake which will have irreversible consequences.

    [06] Ozgurgun argued that the decision of the Cyprus Parliament on the 1950 Enosis referendum is a severe blow to the ongoing Cyprus talks

    According to illegal Bayrak television (online, 13.02.17), reactions continue to the decision taken by the Cyprus House of Representatives to mark the 1950 Enosis referendum at schools in the government controlled area of the Republic of Cyprus.

    Self-styled prime minister Huseyin Ozgurgun, in a written statement on the issue, argued that the Cyprus House of Representatives' decision is a severe blow to the ongoing Cyprus negotiations process and claimed: "The decision of the Greek Cypriot Parliament once again showed those who did not understand or do not want to understand that the Greek-Greek Cypriot duo never had an intention for a federal solution in Cyprus based on the political equality of the two peoples at any stage of the negotiations which has been continuing since 1968".

    He further noted: "Marking Enosis at schools which was a result of the fascist ELAM organization -an extension of EOKA which is represented in parliament is the biggest proof that the Greek Cypriot side continues its dreams of owning the whole island".

    Pointing out that there is no other explanation for this decision proposed by three MPs who at all occasions show hostility towards Turkey and who represent a minority of racists in the Cyprus Parliament, Ozgurgun claimed that the decision brought to the negotiating table by the Greek Cypriot leader Nicos Anastasiades with the help of his party was just another way of saying the process was over.

    Ozgurgun said: "The continuation of the negotiations before the lifting of a decision taken by the Greek Cypriot parliament which represents the unchanged Greek mentality to mark the 1967 Enosis decision and 1950 Enosis Plebiscite at schools, apart from being a waste of time is an act of disrespect to all those sides that make positive contributions to the process".

    [07] Akinci met with British MP

    Turkish Cypriot daily Yeni Duzen newspaper (12.02.17) reported that Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci met at his office with Sir Roger Gale, British MP with the Conservative Party and head of the British Delegation at the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe. British High Commissioner to Nicosia, Mathew Kidd was also present at the meeting.

    (I/Ts.)

    [08] The Turkish EU Minister alleges that the Turkish army protects peace in Cyprus

    Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris newspaper (13.02.17) reports that Omer Celik, Turkish EU Minister and Chief Negotiator, has alleged that the presence of the Turkish occupation army in Cyprus protects peace on the island. In statements to French media, Celik claimed the following regarding the solution in Cyprus:

    "We support a solution based on two equal states. When the conditions there are taken into consideration, the protection of peace is important. The presence of the Turkish army there does not threaten peace. On the contrary, it protects peace. This is not an issue of debate. Its number may be discussed, but the Turkish army will be there somehow".

    (I/Ts.)

    [09] Ozgurgun' statements about occupied Morfou

    Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris Postasi newspaper (11.02.17) reported that so-called prime minister Huseyin Ozgurgun, in statements in an event organized in occupied Morfou during the week-end, alleged that occupied Morfou is "TRNC's territory and it is amongst the most valuable regions of the TRNC and of the Turkish Cypriot people".

    (AK)

    [10] Bahceli: "A global climate has been created for surrendering Cyprus to the Greek Cypriots"

    Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris Postasi newspaper (13.02.17) reports that Devlet Bahceli, the chairman of the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) alleged that "a global climate has been created for surrendering Cyprus to the Greek Cypriots".

    He made these statements speaking during a meeting in MHP in Konya. The paper notes that Bahceli was accused of remaining silent for some time now despite the developments taking place in Cyprus, during this period prior to the referendum that will take place in Turkey, and will determine the changes in the political system of the country.

    "No-one should make calculation with Cyprus because that means that they play with fire", Bahceli stated and added that "playing with the honor of the Turkish nation means playing with fire".

    He also stated that at a time that "the pain regarding Cyprus is growing", Greece and Turkey are facing the Imia issue.

    (CS)

    [11] Ercakica alleges that the Turkish side's principle that the map cannot be discussed without achieving political equality was abolished

    Turkish Cypriot daily Kibrisli newspaper (13.02.17) reports that Hasan Ercakica, spokesman of the former Turkish Cypriot leader Mehmet Ali Talat, has alleged that the rotating presidency, which had been accepted during Talat's negotiations with former President Christofias, had been put onto the negotiating table in relation to the issues of the guarantees and the territory. "This situation is the best indication of the fact that we are behind", he claimed in statements to GENC television.

    Ercakica alleged also that the principle of the Turkish side that "the map cannot be discussed without political equality to be achieved" has been abolished.

    Furthermore, he described the efforts for finding a solution which will not include Turkey as "the biggest obstacle in front of the solution" and reiterated the Turkish position that any agreement should become primary law of the EU.

    Referring to the second stage of the International Conference for Cyprus to be held in March, Ercakica said that he does not expect a positive result. He further alleged that the Greek Cypriots do not accept the Turkish Cypriots as their equals.

    Referring to the letter sent by Turkish Cypriot leader Akinci to the "speaker" of the "assembly" Sibel Siber, Ercakica argued that this letter showed that the issues on which agreement has been reached are not too many and added that there is no agreement on the citizenship and the migration issues.

    (I/Ts.)

    [12] Columnist argues that Turkish citizens in the occupied area are at least 120,000, while Greek citizens in the government-controlled area are mostly 20,000

    Under the title "How close the solution is", columnist Cent Mutluyakali comments in Turkish Cypriot daily Yeni Duzen newspaper (13.02.17), on the Cyprus problem and mainly the demand of the Turkish side as regards the four freedoms to Turkish citizens. Mutluyakali writes, inter alia, the following:

    "How close the solution is? It does not stand at a distance at which we could catch it by extending our hand! Unfortunately the communities do not come together and do not create a 'human tower' towards this end. []

    When do I understand that things in the Cyprus negotiations are not going well? When the sides embrace in a stronger manner their traditional 'positions' and burden the responsibility onto the 'other'!

    We have come to such a point that without solving the troubles of the citizens living in Cyprus, we have become ready to serve someone else's wishes! We have been drowned in the 'four freedoms' agenda in one moment. I cannot understand the following. A new state will be formed. And while the citizens of this state 'are limited' in their own rights, 'freedom' will be given to the citizens of another state!

    The issue is not the balance between Turkey and Greece, let us not deceive ourselves. The number of the Greek citizens established in the southern part of Cyprus is twenty thousand the most, the number of the citizens from Turkey established in the north is at least one hundred and twenty thousand! Is there someone to deny this?

    In the south there are about ten thousand persons from Greece working with work permit, in the north [there are] seventy thousand [persons from Turkey working with work permit]!

    Are we deceiving ourselves by seeing as 'equal' Turkey's and Greece's intention towards Cyprus or their power balance? There is no Greece established in the southern part of Cyprus, there is a Turkey established in the northern part of Cyprus. Even those who say 'the best thing for us to do if to go to Cyprus' say 'it turns out that this place is also Turkey'. If Cyprus does no look like Cyprus, what is the benefit?

    The solution is not at a distance at which we could catch it if we extended our hand. I am disappointed. If things go like this, tomorrow will look like today at best!"

    (I/Ts.)

    [13] Ataoglu replied to the Russian Ambassador's comments

    Turkish Cypriot daily Haberal Kibrisli newspaper (11.02.17) reports that so-called minister of tourism Fikri Ataoglu has reacted strongly to the statements made by the Russian Ambassador to the Republic of Cyprus, Stanislav Osadchiy, who has called the Russian tourists visiting the island to use only the legal ports and airports of the country, pointing out at the same time that the "TRNC" is not recognized.

    Replying to the above statements, Ataoglu alleged that the Russian Ambassador's statements aim to blow the "TRNC' tourism. "The number of the Russian tourists preferring the TRNC will be the best answer to these statements", Ataoglu stated.

    Pointing out that he is pleased from the Russian market and the number of the Russian tourists who are visiting the occupation regime, Ataoglu alleged that there was an increase on this number during 2015 and 2016. He further argued that the reservations for 2017 and for the next year's show an increase on the number of Russian tourists.

    (AK)

    [14] Ataoglu's interview to Hurriyet Daily News on tourism

    Under the title "Northern Cyprus to target tourists in Turkey and Europe with 'year round good weather'", Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News newspaper (online, 13.02.17) publishes an interview with the self-styled minister of tourism and environment minister Fikri Ataoglu to the paper's journalist Barcin Yinan. Here are some exerpts:

    "() We are also seriously focusing on health tourism and we have received serious interest from investors on this issue. We have 100,000 students from all over the world and highly developed medical universities. In addition to the education these universities provide, they have also entered the health sector.

    Northern Cyprus (editor's note: the breakaway regime in the occupied area of the Republic of Cyprus) recently became the 54th member of the World Health Tourism Congress. We believe this is very important. The island's weather is excellent for the elderly, so we have started working on plans to attract older tourists, especially from countries with long winter seasons. Our purpose is to make them stay much longer than ordinary tourists.

    Q: What are the numbers?

    A: We have one million tourists coming to the island annually. We have managed to increase this number this year by attracting more tourists in the winter season. Now, 70% of the capacity of hotels is already filled until June. We also try to make sure our guests do not stay in their hotels and instead visit historic and natural beauties of the island.

    ()

    Q: The biggest obstacle in front of foreign tourists is transportation. How do you plan to overcome that obstacle considering the embargos imposed on the North?

    A: We currently use the touchdown system, where the plane carrying tourists makes a short stopover in Turkey. We have plans to expand that system. It seems this is only possible with planes coming from the U.K.

    We are also working on other destinations. But it is true that due to reportedly obstructions from the Southern Cypriot administration we do encounter problems.

    Q: What about Turkey? Do you think the potential is fully used?

    A: We are working on that as well. Last May flights from Diyarbak?r started operating and last August flights from Ordu started. We are also working to start flights from other destinations like Konya. Many Turkish Cypriots came to the island originally from the Konya region, and we believe opening that new line will reconnect people. We are also working on a more serious promotion in the U.K. There are a lot of Turkish Cypriots living in the U.K. but there is a disconnection between second and third generations and the island. We want to attract these young generations back to their roots, so we will organize some activities in the U.K. in May.

    Q: It seems that the sea lines between Cyprus and Turkey are not sufficient either.

    A: We are also working on opening additional lines from Antalya and Alanya [on Turkey's Mediterranean coast]. We are talking with certain companies and we are hoping to get these lines operating this summer.

    Q: Have you got plans for what to do if the current talks on the island are to end in lasting peace?

    A: No we do not have such plans. We are focusing on how to develop and improve the existing situation. The most important thing for us is to explain and promote ourselves at home. We believe that will attract a high number of tourists [from Turkey]. But we will also concentrate on promotion in other counties. In addition to the U.K. we are targeting Germany, where a lot of Turks live. Azerbaijan, Iran and Russia are other countries in our plans.

    ()

    Currently one of our biggest problems is unfinished investments. There are even some investments that were scheduled to start but did not start at all. If these investments do not start in due time, we will take them back and give them to those who can actually complete them."

    [15] Saner held contacts in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia

    Turkish Cypriot daily Gunes newspaper (13.02.17) reports that the so-called minister of labour and social security, Hamza Ersan Saner who participated in a meeting for family values and marriage which was organized by the Organization of the Islamic Cooperation (OIC) in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia, held a meeting with the Minister of Labour and Social Policy of Saudi Arabia, Ali bin Hasser al-Ghafis and also with the Secretary-General of the Organization for the Islamic Cooperation (OIC) Dr. Yusef bin Ahmed Al-Othaimeen.

    According to the paper, Saner expressed his gratitude to the Al-Othaimeen for the fact that the occupation regime has attended the meeting this time under the title "Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus", pointing out at the same time that they are very well aware of Saudi Arabia's contribution and role in the OIC.

    Meanwhile, according to the paper, Saner briefed also his Saudi Arabian "counterpart" Hasser al-Ghafis about the latest developments on the Cyprus problem and pointed out that the OIC has received important decision about the "TRNC". Saner, however, added that their "government" confront important difficulties on the implementation of these decisions.

    In his turn, Hasser al-Ghafis expressed pleasure for hosting Saner and the "TRNC" under the observer status to the meeting. He also pointed out that such conferences reinforce the ties between the two "countries". He further added that their wish is to continue their cooperation with the "TRNC" inside the OIC and stated that they also support the peace talks aiming to reach a solution to the Cyprus problem.

    On the same issue, Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris Postasi (11.02.17) reported that Saner, during his meeting with the General Secretary of the OIC, briefed him about the latest developments on the Cyprus problem and invited him to visit the "TRNC".

    (AK)

    [16] Information on the population of the breakaway regime from 1974-2014

    Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris newspaper (13.02.17) writes that Kemal Feridun, former chairman of the so-called state organization planning, writes in an article at the economic pages of KIbris, "about the realities of the population in the island" according to which for every 3,5 Greek Cypriots there is 1 Turkish Cypriot in Cyprus.

    Feridun, also gives information about the population in the breakaway regime starting from 1974 until 2004 and argues that the de-jure population of Cyprus is 1,126,644, that the "citizens of the TRNC" are the 25,4% of this population (286,257) while the persons living in the free areas of the Republic of Cyprus are 74,6% (840,407).

    Following is the table published at the paper based on the DPO information regarding the population of the breakaway regime during the last 40 years.

    Year Population Increase % Total increase Immigration

    1974 115,758

    1975 126,949 1,3 1,650 9,541

    1976 130,136 1,2 1,562 1,625

    1977 145,000 1,0 1,450 12,414

    1978 146.740 1,01,467 273

    1979 148,401 1,1 1,634 127

    1980 149,610 1,0 1,496 -387

    1981 151,233 1,0 1,512 111

    1982 153,239 1,2 1,839 167

    1983 155,521 1,2 1,866 416

    1984 157,984 1,1 1,738 725

    1985 160,287 1,2 1,923 380

    1986 162,676 1,1 1,789 600

    1987 165,035 1,3 2,145 214

    1988 167,256 1,2 2,007 214

    1989 169,272 1,1 1,862 154

    1990 171,469 1,2 2,229 -32

    1991 173,756 1,2 2,085 202

    1992 175,118 1,1 1,926 -564

    1993 177,120 1,1 1,948 54

    1994 179,208 1,0 1,792 296

    1995 181,363 1,0 1,814 341

    1996 183,290 0,9 1,650 277

    1997 201.914 0,7 1,413 17,211

    1998 204,225 0,7 1,430 881

    1999 206,562 0,7 1,446 891

    2000 208,886 0,8 1,671 653

    2001 211,191 0,7 1,478 827

    2002 213,491 0,7 1,494 806

    2003 215,790 0,7 1,511 788

    2004 218,066 0,8 1,745 531

    2005 220,289 0.9 1,983 249

    2006 257,513 0.8 2,060 35,164

    2007 268,011 0,9 2,412 8,086

    2008 274,436 0,9 2,470 3,955

    2009 282,736 0.9 2544 6,746

    2010 286,973 0,8 2,296 941

    2011 283,281 1,1 3,116 -6,808

    2012 292,129 1,1 3,213 5,635

    2013 301,988 1,0 3,020 6,830

    2014 313,626 1,0 3,136 8,502

    Total 77,832 120,036

    (CS)

    [17] The occupation regime changed the working hours of the "public sector"

    Turkish Cypriot daily Halkin Sesi newspaper (11.02.17) under the front-page title: "New working hours in the public sector", reported that the so-called council of minister has decided in its meeting on February 7 the change on the "regulation regarding the working hours" of the "public services" in the "TRNC". According to the new "regulation" approved, the working hours of the "public sector" will be: Monday-Thursday (08.00-17.00) and Friday from (08.00-16.00) with an hour lunch break between 12.30-13.30. The change of working hours will cover the period between February 16-June 15.

    Referring to the same issue, Turkish Cypriot daily Yeni Duzen newspaper (13.02.17) reports that the so-called coalition government of the National Unity Party-Democratic Party (UBP-DP) has taken action for the implementation of the "structural reform package" for 2016-2018, so that to be able to take from Turkey the "reform payment fund" amounted to 540 million TL.

    According to the paper, the "government" began implementing the "program" by changing first the "working hours", adding that its next goals will be the "privatization of its ports", of the electricity and communications, the reduction of the number of "municipalities", and the transferring of electricity from Turkey via undersea cables.

    ()

    (AK)

    [18] The "KTSO" attended a fair in Berlin

    Turkish Cypriot daily Havadis newspaper (11.02.17) reported that the "Turkish Cypriot chamber of industry" ("KTSO") was represented in the fair called "Fruit Logistica 2017" which took place in Berlin between February 8-10.

    According to a written statement issued by the "chamber", the "KTSO" represented the "TRNC" in the fair with its own stand. So-called minister of economy and energy Sunat Atun has also visited the stand, writes the paper.

    More than 3 thousand private companies from 130 different countries attended the fair, adds the paper.

    (AK)

    [19] Celik: "'Erdoganophobia' exists in Europe"

    According to Ankara Anatolia news agency (13.02.17), "Erdoganophobia" has existed in Europe for a long time, based on Islamophobia and xenophobia, Turkey's EU Minister Omer Celik argued in an article published Saturday.

    The term was used in apparent reference to the lack of support shown to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan by EU member states.

    "European diplomats are talking about constitutional reform in Turkey without knowing about the content of it", Celik told French newspaper Le Monde.

    He said constitutional reform in Turkey will force the President to relinquish powers rather than increase them and the position would be subject to prosecution.

    "Turkish people will largely support this reform because the July 15 coup attempt exposed the weaknesses of the current system", Celik said.

    "The coup attempt was done by an organization loyal to a heretic religious belief. Their leader is in Pennsylvania, U.S.," Celik told the French 24 television station in reference to Fetullah Gulen who that the Turkish government accuses of being the mastermind of the failed putsch.

    Half of the generals were involved in the coup attempt and the government will remove any military personnel found to be associated with the coup attempt, according to Celik, who said the Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETO) headed by Gulen has tried for 50 years and infiltrated key segments of the Turkish state.

    "One of the top judges confessed at the prosecution and said that they were taking orders from Fetullah Gulen on important documents," Celik said.

    Celik said Erdogan showed great leadership on the EU-Turkey refugee agreement. "The real threat came from European leaders. France had to accept 17,000 refugees but it accepted only 2,000 until now. Many European countries did not accept any refugees", Celik said.

    He said Turkey does not profit from the situation, only Europe has gains and visa free travel for Turkish citizens in the EU was not granted. "When our President is reacting to this, they are blaming him. Europe is the one who did not keep its promises, 3 billion euro aid [to refugees in Turkey] was not sent," Celik added.

    Celik on Friday ended a two-day visit to France where he met with top French officials.

    [20] Turkey seeks business opportunities in Gulf nations

    According to Ankara Anatolia news agency (12.02.17), Turkey seeks to strengthen political and economic relations with Gulf countries during a visit by President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to the region from Sunday to Wednesday.

    The long-running war in Syria and chaos in Iraq and other regional issues will be on Erdogan's agenda as well as economic cooperation between Turkey, Bahrain, Saudi Arabia and Qatar, according to presidential sources.

    The three-nation Gulf tour will be very important for the development of Turkey's economic relations with these countries, according to Turkish business experts.

    The economic relations between Turkey and Gulf countries, which have a high level of national income per capita in accordance with their petroleum and natural gas revenues, saw a significant development between 2007 and 2016 when diplomatic relations also improved, according to official data from TurkStat.

    In the last 10 years, Turkey's exports to these three countries totalled $33 billion. Considering the $53 billion foreign trade volume with these Gulf countries, Turkey had a $13 billion trade surplus in that period.

    Oil-rich Saudi Arabia became Turkey's top export partner with $27 billion in the last decade followed by Qatar and Bahrain with $3.87 billion and $1.66 billion, respectively.

    In the same period, Turkey imported most from Saudi Arabia -- $16.3 billion -- while Qatar came second at $2.8 billion. Bahrain followed with $1.28 billion.

    Last year, the total trade volume between Turkey and these three countries was around $6.2 billion while Turkey's exports amounted to $3.8 billion.

    [21] President Erdogan approved charter draft, referendum on April 16

    According to Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (online, 10.02.17), President Recep Tayyip Erdogan approved constitutional amendments on Feb. 10 that will bring drastic changes to the country's political system, including a shift to an executive presidential system from the current parliamentary system, clearing the way for a referendum to be held on April 16.

    The amendments were sent to the Prime Minister's Office on Feb. 10 to be published in the Official Gazette ahead of the public vote.

    The President's approval came eight days after the Parliament sent the amendments for his approval after passing it by more than the 330-vote threshold needed to send it to a referendum for final approval.

    "Our President has approved the constitutional amendment so the date of the public vote has become clear. God willing, the referendum will be held on April 16. Our citizens will issue the final approval on this amendment, which was completed by our Parliament and signed by our President," Prime Minister Binali Yildirim said.

    Meanwhile, the head of Turkey's Supreme Board of Elections also officially announced on Feb. 11 that the upcoming referendum on major constitutional changes will be held on April 16.

    [22] Cavusoglu: "No Turkish journalist arrested for writing stories"

    According to Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (online, 11.02.17), Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu has claimed that there are no journalists currently under custody in Turkey just for doing their jobs and writing stories.

    Cavusoglu's comments appeared in four Spanish dailies Saturday following a one-day official visit to Madrid on Friday, during which he gave an interview to El Pais, El Mundo, ABC and La Razon.

    "There is not a single journalist who is under custody in Turkey for writing stories. If there is one, I would like to know who he/she is", Cavusoglu alleged in response to a question about the freedom of the press in Turkey.

    "Those who revealed themselves as journalists have either supported terrorism or terrorist organizations."

    So many people have been arrested [in Turkey] because they actively supported the [July 15] coup attempt, and some people used the media as a propaganda tool", Cavusoglu claimed, adding it was important to distinguish between those journalists who were being "critical" versus "getting involved in the coup plot".

    Cavusoglu also criticized the media rights group Reporters Without Borders (RSF), alleging its report on the press freedom in Turkey was not "objective".

    [23] HDP co-leader faces jail over 'insulting' President Erdogan

    According to Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (online, 10.02.17), the Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP) co-leader Figen Yuksekdag is facing a prison sentence of up to five years on charges of insulting President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, a judicial source said Feb. 10.

    A court accepted an indictment prepared by the Van Chief Public Prosecutor's Office demanding a prison term for Yuksekdag ranging from one to five years.

    Yuksekdag allegedly "insulted" the head of state during a conference in Van on Jan. 2 last year.

    On Jan. 18, an indictment was also prepared for the HDP's other co-leader, Selahattin Demirtas, demanding a prison term ranging from one to four years on charges of insulting Erdogan and making terrorist propaganda in a TV appearance on Sept. 9, 2015.

    Demirtas and Yuksekdagd were detained along with 11 other HDP lawmakers in November 2016.

    Later, five HDP lawmakers were released. At the moment, a total of 12 HDP figures, including Demirtas and Yuksekdag, remain in custody, facing hundreds of years in jail.

    The lawmakers face prosecution under anti-terrorism legislation after their parliamentary immunity was lifted last March. TURKISH AFFAIRS SECTION

    http://www.pio.gov.cy

    (DPs / AM)


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