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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Cypriot and Turkish Media Review, 17-03-28

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. 60/17 28.03.17

[A] TURKISH CYPRIOT / TURKISH PRESS

  • [01] Ak?nc? briefed students on the Cyprus problem
  • [02] Ertugruloglu briefed students from Newcastle University on the Cyprus problem
  • [03] A delegation of the Committee of Missing Persons to go to NY for reading out the UN' archives on the missing persons
  • [04] Discussion regarding the name of the big mosque built in the occupied Mia Milia village
  • [05] Yildirim: "Turkey-EU ties to 'relatively normalize' after elections in Europe"
  • [06] Turkish Sports Minister slams Galatasaray football club on FETO-linked members
  • [07] Cavusoglu: "Turkey planning to offer Russians passport-free travel"
  • [08] "Turkey-EU tension endangers upgrade to customs union"
  • [09] Well known Turkish singer applied for the "TRNC citizenship"

  • [A] TURKISH CYPRIOT / TURKISH PRESS

    [01] Ak?nc? briefed students on the Cyprus problem

    According to illegal Bayrak television (27.03.17) Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci stated that negotiations have been going on in Cyprus for the past 49 years with the aim of reaching a comprehensive settlement on the island.

    He, however, alleged that despite coming close to reaching a settlement several times, all efforts had failed, primarily due to the Greek Cypriot side's stance.

    Akinci was addressing secondary school students at a conference titled: "The Past, Present and Future of the Cyprus problem.

    Claiming once more that the current negotiations process had entered a deadlock due to a decision taken by the Cyprus House of Representatives to commemorate the 1950 Enosis plebiscite in schools in "south" Cyprus, Ak?nc? alleged that teaching youth in the "south" that this was a good thing when talks on reaching a federation are being carried out at the negotiating table is an unacceptable situation.

    He added that it is important to build a culture of peace not Enosis in order to co-exist on the island.

    Pointing out that the "controversial decision" had been passed with the initiative of the fascist party ELAM which only had 2 seats in the Cyprus House of Representatives; Akinci argued that the fact that a small fascist party such as ELAM could persuade the ruling party to support such a decision raised important questions.

    He supported that it was not possible to change history but underlined the need and importance of deriving lessons from mistakes made.

    Stating that the two leading parties in "south Cyprus" were taking steps to rectify this mistake, Ak?nc? said that he will be meeting with President Nicos Anastasiades at a social meeting on the 2nd of April.

    He also explained that he will need to discuss confidence building measures with the Greek Cypriot leader.

    Ak?nc? also repeated that he will be ready to return to the negotiating table once the Cyprus Parliament declares the decision void.

    Stating that efforts to reach a federal settlement in Cyprus has been going on for years, Ak?nc? said that this was the only settlement model that could be approved by all the sides.

    He also added that the most important benefit a settlement will have to offer is freeing today's youth from a life of uncertainty.

    Explaining that the Greek Cypriots have enjoyed the advantage of international recognition for all these years, Ak?nc? said: "A huge wealth lies beneath the sea. This wealth, the natural gas, can only be utilized through cooperation which in turn can only be possible through a solution. We have an equal right over the island's natural resources which we shall take. This region will become a region of stability not conflict."

    Underlining the importance of political equality and security for Turkish Cypriots in any settlement to be reached, Ak?nc? added that the next two months will be crucial for the negotiations process.

    Following his speech, Akinci answered student's questions on the Cyprus problem.

    [02] Ertugruloglu briefed students from Newcastle University on the Cyprus problem

    Turkish daily Diyalog newspaper (28.03.17) reports that the self-styled foreign minister Tahsin Ertugruloglu briefed a delegation of 33 students from Newcastle university about the latest developments on the Cyprus problem and on the position of the Turkish Cypriot side. The briefing took place at the premises of the "foreign ministry", writes the paper.

    (CS)

    [03] A delegation of the Committee of Missing Persons to go to NY for reading out the UN' archives on the missing persons

    Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris newspaper (18.03.17) reports that the Turkish Cypriot member of the Committee on Missing Persons in Cyprus (CMP) Gulden Plumer Kucuk, in statements to the paper, announced that the UN accepted to share the data in their archives concerning the missing persons in Cyprus.

    Speaking to the paper on the issue, Plumer stated that the Committee on Missing Persons has launched an initiative in 2015 concerning collective data on the missing persons. She announced that a delegation from the Committee in the first stage will go to the UN next May in order to read the UN's archives. "The delegation is expected also to have a meeting with the UN's Secretary-General Antonio Guterres", Kucuk said.

    (?)

    [04] Discussion regarding the name of the big mosque built in the occupied Mia Milia village

    Under the title: "Hala Sultan or Seyh Nazim", Turkish Cypriot daily Havadis newspaper (28.03.17) reports that a discussion has occurred regarding the name of the big mosque built in the occupied Mia Milia village.

    Speaking to the paper, the chairman of the MUSIAD brand in the breakaway regime Okyay Sadikoglu stated that he suggested that the mosque is not named Hala Sultan, but Seyh Nazim Kibrisli, in honour of Seyh Nazim, a spiritual leader in the occupied area of Cyprus. However, Hikmet Kaynarca, chairman of the Cyprus Foundation of Science Morals and Social Mutual Aid (KISAV), board of trustees stated that changing the name is not possible since when money were gathered from abroad for building the mosque it was stated that it was to be named Hala Sultan. In addition he noted that no money from the breakaway regime were gathered from the "TRNC budget" or any other source for the construction of the mosque.

    (CS)

    [05] Yildirim: "Turkey-EU ties to 'relatively normalize' after elections in Europe"

    Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (28.03.17) reports that Turkey's Prime Minister Binali Y?ld?r?m said on March 27 that the relations between Turkey and European Union member states will "relatively normalize" after the completion of a series of elections in Europe.

    In statements during a meeting he held with the chief editors of TV broadcasters, Y?ld?r?m said that it is not correct to say "all EU states are against Turkey."

    "But a few of them are conducting an active campaign against [Turkey] with regard to the constitutional amendment," he said, referring to the government-supported bid to shift to an executive presidential system, due to be voted in a referendum on April 16.

    Y?ld?r?m warned that "Islamophobia and anti-Turkish tendencies" pose a risk to Europe, while claiming that the arguments of the Fethullahist Terror Organization (FETO) of U.S.-based Islamic preacher Fethullah Gulen and the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) are heeded over Turkey's perspective.

    Addressing President Recep Tayyip Erdogan's comments that Ankara will "reassess" its ties with the European Union after the April 16 referendum, Y?ld?r?m said that "the people will make the decision on issues that politics can't decide."

    "A referendum on Turkey's EU membership bid could be held if Turkish citizens are 'in confusion' about the process", he added.

    Meanwhile, Ankara Anatolia news agency (27.03.17) reported that Yildirim stated that If Turkey adopts a presidential system a few weeks from now, Turkey's 10% election threshold could be reduced.

    "The 10% election threshold could be discussed and lowered. Because with the new model under the presidential system, Deputies rather than political parties will be at the forefront," Yildirim stated, explaining that the political parties' law could be negotiated with the parties following the April 16 referendum on constitutional changes, including shifting Turkey from a parliamentary system of governance to a presidential one.

    On the referendum's outcome, Yildirim was optimistic, saying: "I believe it will end in Yes."

    He also rejected No campaigners' claims that the changes would leave the country under one-man rule. "This system will bring justice in representation and stability in government," he said, adding that it would also eliminate bureaucratic red tape.

    [06] Turkish Sports Minister slams Galatasaray football club on FETO-linked members

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (27.03.17) reported that Turkey's Sports Minister Akif Cagatay Kilic late on Saturday criticized a top football team's decision not to disown two former players publicly known to have ties with a terror group.

    Galatasaray management board voted in its annual meeting on Saturday to expel several members of the club due to their alleged or established links with Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETO). The group is accused of orchestrating last July's deadly coup attempt.

    The members expelled after the vote included jailed former Istanbul Mayor Huseyin Avni Mutlu and former judiciary member Zekeriya Oz, among others.

    But Hakan Sukur and Arif Erdem, two former Galatasaray players with international caps, were voted to remain part of the club's membership.

    Kilic expressed discontent with the decision, saying: "The Galatasaray Board need to correct the issue immediately. Traitors to our country and our state have no business in our established sports clubs," the minister said. "The board's voting is inexplicable to the families of our martyrs and veterans," he added.

    Both Sukur and Erdem were in the celebrated squad that won the UEFA Cup in 2000.

    They are also known to be supporters of FETO leader Fetullah Gulen, who Ankara says masterminded the July 15 coup attempt.

    [07] Cavusoglu: "Turkey planning to offer Russians passport-free travel"

    Turkish daily Sabah (27.03.17) reported that Turkey's Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu stated that preparations have been made for Russian citizens to enter Turkey without passports and announced that they will be installing devices in airports that can read Russian citizens' identity cards.

    Speaking in Antalya on Sunday, Minister Cavusoglu stressed that the normalization of the relations between Russian and Turkey is gradually improving. (?)

    [08] "Turkey-EU tension endangers upgrade to customs union"

    In a commentary in Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (28.03.17), columnist Serkan Demirtas writes: "The ongoing tension between Ankara and Brussels could further complicate the launch of technical negotiations to upgrade a customs union agreement to the advantage of both sides, Turkish and European diplomats have admitted, revealing that a Turkey-EU summit at the leaders' level planned for May or June will not happen until the end of the year.

    Turkey was hoping that the EU Council would approve the mandate in the first half of 2017 so that it could begin negotiations with the European Commission by July 1, when the Estonian term Presidency will begin.

    'I don't say that it's completely impossible but it's very, very difficult under the given circumstances', a European diplomat told the Hurriyet Daily News.

    'A necessary mandate to launch negotiations would not be a big problem if that would happen in the last month', a diplomat said from another European country.

    'The course of the Turkey-EU relationship after the referendum will be decisive. Turkey's attempt to introduce a referendum on the continuation of accession talks or continued political crisis through public accusations will surely not be helpful for us in managing the last remaining positive agenda in our ties'.

    Turkey and the EU agreed to upgrade their two-decade-old customs union on industrial goods by expanding it to agriculture products, services and public procurements. The European Commission notified the European Council that it was ready to negotiate with Turkey and duly called for a mandate in late 2016. Turkey wants to start negotiations swiftly but recent tension has created a number of difficulties, as outlined below.

    No move until German polls

    Austrian effect: One of the countries that loudly voiced its opposition to issuing a mandate to the commission is Austria, while some other countries are also cold to the idea of taking such a step under the current conditions.

    German elections: During talks between Ankara and Brussels in February, the initial plan was to hold a Turkey-EU summit at the leaders' level either in late May or early June with a positive agenda. Along with political talks with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, EU leaders also expected to authorize the commission to start customs union talks with Ankara as of July 1. However, Germany made clear to its EU partners that "there will be no such summit until German elections in September and that no action will be taken on visa liberalization for Turkish nationals."

    'Greek Cyprus': "Greek Cyprus" as the Republic of Cyprus is called by the paper, is also expected to create troubles for the European Council by introducing conditions for a green light before authorizing the Commission. Turkey has not implemented the existing customs union rules to "Greek Cyprus" since it joined the EU and refused to open its ports and airports for the Greek Cypriot vessels. Therefore, 'Greek Cyprus' is expected to use the opportunity to bring the issue back to the agenda before upgrading the customs union. For Ankara, this is likely to be one of the most significant hurdles.

    Human rights: The EU will also consider how best to raise the human rights situation in Turkey during the customs union negotiations given the current decline in democratic norms in the country.

    Turkey's Economy Ministry predicts that upgraded customs union will add around $40 billion a year to Turkish foreign trade. Negotiations are estimated to last two years once they begin".

    [09] Well known Turkish singer applied for the "TRNC citizenship"

    Turkish Cypriot daily Kibis Postasi newspaper (28.03.17) reports that the well know singer Ajda Pekkan applied for the "TRNC citizenship".

    According to the paper, Pekkan met yesterday with the so-called prime minister Huseyin Ozgurgun and the "minister of transportation" Kemal Durust.

    The singer was accompanied by businessman Bulut Aacan.

    (CS)

    ?????????.

    (AK/ AM)

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