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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Cypriot and Turkish Media Review, 17-04-11
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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. 70/17 11.04.17
[A] TURKISH CYPRIOT / TURKISH PRESS
[A] TURKISH CYPRIOT / TURKISH PRESS
 Eide: We lost both time and trustTurkish Cypriot daily Havadis newspaper (11.04.17) reports that UNSG's Special Adviser, Espen Barth Eide met yesterday for one hour in the occupied area of Cyprus with Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci in view of the resumption of the Cyprus negotiations today. In statements after the meeting, Eide described their discussion as "constructive" and noted that he wanted to meet with both leaders to listen to their expectations from the today's meeting. He said that he would hold a discussion over the phone with President Anastasiades because the latter was in Madrid.
Eide noted that the target of the talks is to reach convergences between the leaders on the issues on which disagreements exist. Reiterating that he and his team will help as much as they can in the process, Eide said that the process is being carried out by the two leaders and that from time to time news referring to arbitration is published in the press, but this news does not reflect reality. He added that neither himself nor the UNSG or the leaders want arbitration and pointed out that the leaders will decide how he could help and how the UN could offer support to the process.
"We lost a lot of time, we lost trust", said the Norwegian diplomat arguing that while efforts were exerted for settling the problem of trust between the leaders, questioning the credibility of the process started within the communities. Eide called on the leaders to build trust between the two communities.
Noting that the practical implementation of issues such as the constitution, the property and the security will be discussed, but in the end of the day the two communities must feel trust towards each other and want to live together, Eide argued that the leaders and other elements in the communities bear the responsibility on this issue.
Expressing his satisfaction with the return of the leaders to the negotiating table, Eide underlined that this is only the beginning and does not guarantee a successful result. He said that what they should do now is to gather all issues discussed during the past few months before the recent crisis and reach convergence on the issues of disagreement. He argued that the forthcoming days will show whether the necessary will [to solve the problem] exists.
Asked on whether there is a change of methodology in the negotiations, Eide replied that the method they use gave good results and it is obvious that the leaders reached a better point than their predecessors. Arguing that the current situation requires the gathering of all issues and the reaching of final and comprehensive solution, Eide said that he cannot do more than the leaders ask from him, that he would ask for the leaders to decide how they want to carry out the process within the next few weeks and that he wants to refer to weeks now and not to months.
Asked to comment on the agreements made by the Republic of Cyprus on the hydrocarbon issue and on the allegation that these caused an eight month delay in the negotiations, Eide noted that he did not want to comment on this issue, that now is the time of focusing on the negotiations, that in case of success in the negotiations these resources will be shared and that this is an issue which is currently on the negotiating table.
 Akinci briefed the Turkish Cypriot political parties on the Cyprus negotiationsTurkish Cypriot daily Yeni Duzen newspaper (11.04.17) reports that the Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci briefed the Turkish Cypriot political parties that are represented in the "assembly" on the latest developments of the Cyprus negotiations. Akinci gave information to the parties in an 1,5 hour meeting regarding the new phase of the negotiations which are to be launched today.
Speaking after the meeting, the general secretary of the National Unity Party (UBP) Dursun Oguz, stated that Akinci informed them about the meeting he held with the UN Secretary-General's Special Adviser on Cyprus, Espen Barth Eide. He also stated that they expect from the Greek Cypriot side to show a constructive attitude during the next 2,5 months. He also said that Akinci shares the same opinion with them on this issue. Oguz added that the excavat?on works for hydrocarbon are expected to make the process more difficult.
The chairman of the Republican Turkish Party (CTP) Tufan Erhurman, criticized the chairman of UBP and "prime minister" Huseyin Ozgurgun for not participating in the meeting. He said that Akinci informed them about the latest developments of the Cyprus negotiations and said that the next period of 2,5 months which will be crucial for the process must be used in the best way in order to have good results. He also said that Akinci asked for the assistance of all political parties and especially from CTP which has good relations with Greek political parties. He also said that they trust fully Akinci and his negotiations team.
On his part, the chairman of Democratic Party (DP) and deputy "prime minister" Serdar Denktas, stated that he has no hope at all that there will be a positive outcome from the Cyprus negotiations. He went on and added that Akinci has said that the negotiations will continue for some time: "We are patient. Of course we will wait for this short period of time; but we do not agree that the (Cyprus) Parliament overcame the decision for the Enosis
Plebiscite and we do not tolerate that", he stated. He also said that what the Parliament did was to give the authority for the celebration decision to the Ministry of Education which is under the influence of the Church.
Finally, the chairman of the Socialist Democracy Party (TDP), Cemal Ozyigit stated that two months were lost because of the initiative taken by chauvinist circles in the Greek Cypriot side for the issue of the Enosis Plebiscite and called on for no more time to be lost at the negotiations. Noting that a result can be achieved if there is a will, Ozyigit said that some circles try to find relations between the process and the referendum in Turkey. The negotiations which start today show that things are different, Ozyigit said.
 Akinci had a phone conversation with the British Minister of StateTurkish Cypriot daily Kibris newspaper (11.04.17) reports that prior to the resumption of the Cyprus talks launched today Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci received yesterday a phone call by the British Minister of State for Europe and the Americas, Sir Alan Duncan.
According to a press release by Akinci's office, Duncan expressed his country support for the negotiation process.
 Reactions to the prohibition of the religious service at Agios Georgios Eksorinos church continueTurkish Cypriot daily Havadis newspaper (11.04.17) reports that the decision of the occupation regime to prohibit the religious service which would be held on Holy Friday at Agios Georgios Eksorinos church in occupied Famagusta caused the reaction of Turkish Cypriot organizations.
Okan Dagli, representative of the Famagusta Initiative, expressed the view that the decision of the "government" will not change and noted that "we protest to the decision of preventing the service". Describing the decision as contrary to the spirit of the negotiations, Dagli underlined that the solution process is not held only between the leaders at the negotiating table, but it can also be harmed by events happening outside the table. He said that the negative stance of the Turkish side seriously harms the rapprochement between the two communities and that preventing the Greek Cypriots from exercising their right of worship is contrary to the international law.
He added that after 2014, the Greek Cypriots were holding services in churches in the occupied area of Cyprus almost every month and that with the restrictions implemented by the occupation regime the "permits" for religious services are now granted arbitrarily.
Moreover, Serdar Atai, vice president of the Within the Walls of Famagusta Association, stated that the restrictions imposed by the "foreign ministry" to the religious services in a period during which negotiations are held were anyway wrong. He said that he does not consider the policy of granting "permit" only once a year for religious services to all occupied churches, except for those in occupied Morfou, Rizokarpaso and Engomi, to be correct. According to Atai, this does not coincide with the human rights and the international law.
Finally, occupied Famagusta "district officer", Durdane Aci said that the prohibition of the service was a decision taken by the "government" and refrained from commenting on the issue.
 Tolun on the occupation regime's tourismTurkish Cypriot daily Halkin Sesi newspaper (11.04.17) reports that a 10% increase is expected for the summer season on the number of tourists who are illegally visiting the occupation regime from Turkey.
In statements on the issue, the "chairman" of the "Turkish Cypriot travel agent's union", "KITSAB" Orhan Tolun, stated, inter alia, that the negative incidents in Turkey affected also the "TRNC's tourism" negatively. Tolun explained that due to the tension exist in Turkey, foreign tourists do not want to travel via Istanbul and underlined that for this reason they should not insist on traveling to illegal Tymbou airport.
Tolun further stated that due to the situation in Turkey the number of foreign tourists in the occupied area of Cyprus has been reduced during the past two years.
Stating that the British market is in a bad condition, Tolun said that they are considering to organize an advertising campaign in order to attract more tourists from the UK.
Referring to the occupation regime's participation in tourist fairs abroad, Tolun stated that due to the fact that Turkey's negative situation affects the "TRNC", the "TRNC" should not participate in these fairs next to Turkey's stands but indeed next to the stands of European countries.
 A delegation of Turkish investors from Mersin is illegally visiting the occupation regime for investmentsTurkish Cypriot daily Diyalog newspaper (11.04.17) reports that a delegation of Turkish investors from the "K-20 Investments Partnership Organization" from Mersin is illegally in the occupied area of Cyprus for contacts and with the aim to discuss possible investments in the "fields of education and tourism".
According to the paper, the delegation visited yesterday the so-called minister of education and culture, Ozdemir Berova and the so-called minister of public works and transportation, Kemal Durust.
Speaking during the meeting, Berova underlined the importance of Mersin province for the "TRNC" and alleged that the "TRNC" has strong ties with the Anatolian world.
Also speaking on behalf of the delegation, Kazim Altioglu, stated, inter alia, that their organization has chosen the "TRNC" to make investments in the "fields of education and tourism". He added that they are visiting the "TRNC" in order to be briefed about the path to be followed.
Also speaking after meeting with the delegation, Durust expressed pleasure over the visit and pointed to the importance of Turkey's investments in the "TRNC".
 A 47.1% turnout of Turkish expats vote in the referendumAccording to Turkish daily Sabah newspaper (online, 10.01.17), more than 1.4 million Turkish expats have cast their absentee ballots ahead of the April 16 referendum on the constitutional amendment package, according to information obtained from anonymous sources.
Turkish citizens living abroad have cast their votes at 120 polling stations in 57 countries between March 27 and April 9. According to the results, 1,326,070 Turkish citizens voted abroad and this figure indicates a 47.1% participation rate.
As for April 9, a total of 73,976 people voted at customs gates in Turkey, while ballot boxes at the border points will remain open until April 16.
Including custom gates as of the end of April 9, the total number of votes cast abroad reached 1,400,046. This figure was 1,326,070 in the November 2015 general elections, indicating a 14.3% increase.
Turkey's Supreme Election Board (YSK) records show that there are 2,972,676 Turkish expatriates eligible to vote in the referendum. Turkish expats have been able to vote since 2014 and the April 16 referendum is the fourth time expats have had the opportunity to vote in Turkish elections.
In the 2014 presidential election, the absentee voter turnout was 8% and this figure rose to 40% in the November 2015 general election. Thus, a 47.10% turnout in the referendum indicates a new record.
 Turkey to take additional security measures for April 16 pollsAccording to Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (online, 10.04.17), over a 250,000 police officers will be assigned to ensure the safety of the polls during Turkey's upcoming referendum on whether to shift to an executive presidential system on April 16, while the government has urged additional security measures in tense eastern and south-eastern provinces.
"Some 251,788 police officers and 128,455 gendarmerie officers will be assigned for the safety of the referendum," Interior Minister Suleyman Soylu stated on April 10.
Pointing to ongoing clashes between the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) and security forces in parts of the southeast, Soylu said additional officers would be on duty on polling day in affected areas.
"Some 51,148 security guards and 18,675 voluntary security guards in 26 cities will also be assigned for the referendum," he added.
President Recep Tayyip Erdogan had recently announced that four additional provinces would be included into the state's "security guard" system and promised a wage rise to all village guards.
"Our security guards can now be assigned to operations other than their own cities. In addition to the present provinces, Erzurum, Erzincan, Hatay and Osmaniye have been included into the security guard system. By increasing the number to 55,000 and reducing the average age, we have made our security guards the greatest supporters of our soldiers and police officers," Erdogan said on April 5.
The "village guard system" was established in 1985 as an additional armed security force in the active fight with the PKK in the region. With one of the recent state of emergency decrees in February 2017, the name of the "village guard" system was changed to the "security guard" system and they were given additional authority. According to the new decree, the total number of guards rose to 54,760, while their age was limited to be between 22 and 30.
 Turkey invites European referendum observersAccording to Ankara Anatolia news agency (10.04.17), the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) said on Monday it will send a 20-member delegation to Turkey to observe Sunday's referendum.
According to PACE, the move is at the invitation of the Turkish authorities.
PACE members will meet Yes and No campaigners in Turkey between April 14 ? 17, plus political leaders.
The European lawmakers will also meet Turkish NGOs and media figures.
More than 55 million Turkish citizens will vote on Sunday in the referendum on constitutional changes.
More than 1.2 million Turkish expatriates have already voted at 120 polling stations in 57 countries since March 27.
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