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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Cypriot and Turkish Media Review, 17-09-11

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 <>



No.174/17 11.09.17


  • [01] Turkish Deputy Prime Minister evaluated the Cyprus problem
  • [02] Kilicdaroglu: "We have written our nationalism on Pentadaktylos Mountains when we landed in Cyprus"
  • [03] Atun holds contacts in Astana
  • [04] Evkaf's persistence on Varosha may cause the collapsing of the "compensation committee" Turkish Cypriot lawyer argues
  • [05] So-called deputies participated in PACE meetings
  • [06] Berova: "Our school curriculum is compatible with Turkey's"
  • [07] Cavusoglu admitted that they have no money for installation of water pipelines in the entire "regions of the TRNC"
  • [08] The occupation regime to restore the "train station" in occupied Morfou and open a "City museum" in occupied Lefka area
  • [09] Turkish Cypriot travel agents prefer Larnaka Airport
  • [10] The Turkish Foreign Ministry issued a travel warning for travelling to Germany
  • [11] Turkey to EU: Let's focus on our 'common future'
  • [12] Turkey, Kazakhstan sign investment agreements
  • [13] Israeli Ambassador: Turkey and Israel can enjoy cooperation not only in energy but also in other Sector
  • [14] Erdogan, Trump held phone conversation
  • [15] Commentary blames EU hypocrisy, AKP's problematic stance on rights for Turkey-EU tension


    [01] Turkish Deputy Prime Minister evaluated the Cyprus problem

    Illegal Bayrak television (09.09.17) broadcast that Turkish Deputy Prime Minister Recep Akdag evaluated the Cyprus problem in a program on Turkey's NTV channel.

    He said that while diplomatic steps were being taken towards a solution, how the "Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus" prosper should also be a focal point.

    Upon being asked a question regarding the Cyprus negotiations process, Akdag said that during his visits to the "TRNC" he had spoken with various of "circles" in the "country".

    He alleged that the Greek Cypriot side is trying to condemn the Cyprus problem to a deadlock and added that the Greek Cypriot side being made a unilateral member of the European Union had a negative effect on the solution process in the island.

    Touching upon Turkey-EU relations, Akdag said that the European Union will always be the aim for Turkey and alleged that Turkey had fulfilled a large section of its requirements for EU membership.

    [02] Kilicdaroglu: "We have written our nationalism on Pentadaktylos Mountains when we landed in Cyprus"

    Turkish Cypriot daily Demokrat Bakis newspaper (11.09.17) reports that Kemal Kilicdaroglu, leader of main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP), has claimed that his party "had written its nationalism" on Pentadaktylos Mountains during the Turkish invasion of Cyprus. Speaking at CHP's assembly on the occasion of the 94th anniversary from the establishment of the party, Kilicdaroglu replied to those criticizing CHP's "nationalism". Arguing that the party members defend Turkey's interests everywhere and always, Kilicdaroglu alleged:

    "They criticize our nationalism. They say that they are nationalists. The nationalism of those who could not defend the Aegean islands is empty. When we landed in Cyprus, we wrote our nationalism on Pentadaktylos Mountains. We have written our nationalism in the Mediterranean Sea. Our nationalism is with actions not with words. We protect the people's interests. […]"


    [03] Atun holds contacts in Astana

    Turkish Cypriot daily Vatan newspaper (11.09.17) reports that Sunat Atun, self-styled minister of economy and energy, has participated in the opening of the Technology Summit of the Islamic Cooperation Organization (OIC) held in Astana, Kazakhstan, with the participation of Presidents and Prime Ministers of 57 states. At the sidelines of the summit, Atun met with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

    Furthermore, Atun held meetings with the Ministers of industry, technology and economy of OIC's member states and with the chairman of the Islamic Development Bank. Today Atun is expected to address the summit.


    [04] Evkaf's persistence on Varosha may cause the collapsing of the "compensation committee" Turkish Cypriot lawyer argues

    Turkish Cypriot daily Havadis newspaper (11.09.17) reports that the Turkish Cypriot lawyer who represents Greek Cypriots at the "Compensation Committee", Murat Hakki stated that Evkaf's persistence on the Varosha issue can cause the collapsing of the "committee".

    Hakki made these statements to the paper noting that due to the insisting by Evkaf that Varosha belongs to them many Greek Cypriot clients of him filed application directly to the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) instead of applying to the "committee", believing that the local remedy option was exhausted.

    In case the applications to ECHR are accepted, the operation of the "committee" will come to an end Hakki stated.


    [05] So-called deputies participated in PACE meetings

    Illegal Bayrak television (09.09.17) broadcast that Republican Turkish Party "depyty" Mehmet Caglar and the National Unity Party "deputy" Erdal Ozcenk attended the European Council's Parliamentary Committee meetings.

    Caglar issued a written statement regarding the Committee meetings and their contacts in Paris. Referring to their meetings with the Deputy Chief of Staff of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) Secretary-General Juan Yermo Caglar said that "during the meeting North Cyprus economy was taken up and discussions focused on joint workings that may be able to take place".

    Caglar also referred to the Committee meetings by claiming that during their one minute speeches they evaluated the Cyprus negotiations process.

    According to Caglar "the efforts to solve the Cyprus problem must restart within the framework of UN parameters but a method that will obtain results must be found". He also said that the international community and PACE leaders must take encouraging steps on this issue.

    [06] Berova: "Our school curriculum is compatible with Turkey's"

    Turkish Cypriot daily Haberal Kibrisli (11.09.17) reports that so-called minister of education and culture, Ozdemir Berova, in statements to the paper said that "some changes which were made in the curriculum in Turkey during the school year 2017-2018 will have a reflection in some sections of the TRNC education".

    Replying to the accusations against him expressed by some circles in the "TRNC", Berova said: "The curriculum of the Turkish Cypriot community since 1971 complies with Turkey's". He added further that no changes were made in the "TRNC's curriculum even after the British colonial period". He also claimed that their "goal is to enable our youth to grow up and live with national and moral values".


    [07] Cavusoglu admitted that they have no money for installation of water pipelines in the entire "regions of the TRNC"

    Turkish Cypriot daily Diyalog newspaper (11.09.17) reports that so-called minister of agriculture Nazim Cavusoglu, in statements during a visit at the occupied village of Agios Andronikos, replying to the question: "Why the water transferred from Anamur to the TRNC has not yet reached all regions yet", explained that in order for the water transferred from Turkey to the "TRNC" to be able to reach all regions, it is necessary to create a 200 square meter pipeline. "The TRNC government does not have money at all to install plumbing", he said.

    Also, in exclusive statements to the paper, Cavusoglu clarified that the problem will be solved as soon as the money will be found, in order to open tenders for the installation of the pipelines.


    [08] The occupation regime to restore the "train station" in occupied Morfou and open a "City museum" in occupied Lefka area

    Turkish daily Halkin Sesi newspaper (11.09.17) reports that so-called minister of tourism and environment Fikri Ataoglu, in statements while visiting occupied Morfou and Lefka, announced that they will soon open "tenders" for the restoration of the "historical train station" in occupied Morfou and for the opening of a city museum in occupied Lefka.

    Explaining that they are exerting efforts to attract more tourists in occupied Morfou, Ataoglu alleged that the "two projects have been completed, but were suspended due to the lack of money". Ataoglu further claimed that they will soon open tenders for the implementation of the two projects.

    About the train station in occupied Morfou, Ataoglu alleged that its restoration will be completed in 5-6 months. He further claimed that as of October 8-9 buses will be transferring tourists to Morfou and Lefka daily.


    [09] Turkish Cypriot travel agents prefer Larnaka Airport

    Turkish Cypriot daily Star Kibris newspaper (10.09.17) reported that the "protocol" implemented on 1 January 2017 and determines the principles for providing "incentives" in the field of tourism has caused the decrease of the charter flights to the occupied area of the Republic of Cyprus and forced the Turkish Cypriot tour operators to turn to Larnaka Airport. According to the paper, the tour operators think that the "incentives" are insufficient and prefer Larnaka Airport to the illegal airport in occupied Tymbou because the ticket prices are cheaper and more companies fly to Larnaka.

    The tour operators are reportedly choosing Larnaka to bring tourists to the occupied area of Cyprus in order to avoid bankruptcy. It is said that during the past seven months the illegal airport in Tymbou lost three million euros and the illegal "state" 4-5 million euros.

    In statements to the paper, Sahap Asikoglu, former "secretary" at the self-styled ministry of tourism, said that with the change in the incentives the tour operators have started bringing tourists through Larnaka Airport and that the regime gives incentives for each tourist brought to the occupied area of Cyprus. Noting that during the past seven months the "state" and the illegal airport have lost millions of euros, Asikoglu argued: "We are giving the money to the Greek Cypriot side. Larnaka is continuously strengthened and Tymbou is weakening".


    [10] The Turkish Foreign Ministry issued a travel warning for travelling to Germany

    Turkish Hurriyet Daily News (11.09.17) reports that the Turkish Foreign Ministry issued a travel warning on Sept. 9 for its citizens living in Germany and those who will travel to the country, urging them to be cautious and refrain from political discussions ahead of the country's federal elections later this month.

    In a statement issued on its website, the Ministry said the political atmosphere in Germany was "under the effect of increasing far-right and even racist discourses" as the election campaign was based on "an anti-Turkey sentiment" and efforts to obstruct its EU accession bid, warning Turkish citizens to "be careful" and keep their composure against "racist and xenophobic slurs."

    "Turkish citizens who live in or who plan to travel to Germany should be cautious and act prudently in cases of possible incidents, behavior or verbal assaults of xenophobia and racism," the Foreign Ministry said.

    "It is worrying that a chancellor-candidate political leader in Germany has recently made statements including clear racist elements and German officials took no measures for it," it said.

    Ankara also said there was "discrimination" against Turks "on the basis of their political views," which has led to "verbal attacks against some of our citizens."

    It reminded that German authorities had failed to elaborate on past incidents targeting Turks in the country, citing deadly "unexplained" fires, arbitrary questionings at airports and ill-treatment as examples.

    The Ministry also added that Berlin was "embracing terror organizations," namely the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) and the Fethullahist Terrorist Organization (FETO), widely believed to have masterminded last year's failed coup.

    "It is advised for our citizens in Germany or planning to visit this country to be even-tempered, keep themselves out of political discussions and absent themselves from rallies held by terrorist groups ahead of the elections," the statement said.

    Meanwhile, senior German politicians on Sept. 10 commented on the travel warning. German Chancellor Angela Merkel's Chief of Staff Peter Altmaier, described the warning on Twitter on Sept. 10 as "a bad joke" and added that "Nazi comparisons offend our honor!"

    [11] Turkey to EU: Let's focus on our 'common future':

    Turkish Hurriyet Daily News (11.09.17) reports that European Union Minister of Turkey Omer Celik called out on the European Union to focus on the future as "a rapprochement" between Turkey and the EU, amid the acceleration of discussions on the suspension of Turkey's full membership talks.

    His comments came after the political scene in the EU engaged in a discussion over the continuation of full membership talks with Turkey, after German Chancellor Angela Merkel vowed not to support Ankara's bid to join the EU.

    "To solve such big problems, we should focus on a common future as a rapprochement between Turkey and the EU," Celik said on Sept. 8 at a panel in Tallinn.

    Merkel hinted she would support the suspension or the end of Turkey's accession talks with the EU at the meeting to be held in October.

    "I will recommend that we discuss the future status of Turkey, including whether to suspend or end membership talks," Merkel said on Sept. 3, warning Ankara is "drifting away from the rule of law fast."

    Ankara deems the German Chancellor's comments as a campaigning rhetoric ahead of the German federal elections to be held on Sept. 24. "Such comments are not right," Celik said.

    "We have been fed up with hearing such irrational comments, and Turkey should not be subject to any country's internal politics," he said, reiterating Ankara's criticisms of Merkel for practicing the politics of populism.

    "Turkey has come this way as a strong European country and strong European democracy without being a member of the EU. This aim is still protected," he added.

    "Not collaborating with a secular and democratic political regime would imperil the struggle against radicalization," said Celik, stating that Turkey is a Muslim-majority country.

    "In this manner, I have underlined that the comments stating 'the negotiations should be suspended or cut' are the biggest supporting [factors to] radicalization," he said.

    Amid difficulties over Turkey's future accession talks, Celik went to the Estonian capital to participate in the Informal Meeting of EU Foreign Ministers and to meet with prominent EU officials.

    [12] Turkey, Kazakhstan sign investment agreements

    Turkish Hurriyet Daily News (11.09.17) reports that Turkish and Kazakh companies signed on Sept. 9 investment agreements worth $590 million.

    Kazakhstan's national company Kazakh Invest and Turkey's private companies including Cal?k Holding, Y?ld?r?m Holding, Y?ld?zlar SSS Holding and Agrobest Group made agreements with the efforts of the Embassy of Kazakhstan in Ankara, said a written statement from the ministry.

    According to the statement, the agreements cover a range of fields, including construction materials, machine production, energy, metallurgy and chemical manufacture.

    In the last five years, Turkish companies carried out 18 investment projects worth $667.5 million in Kazakhstan.

    In addition, the paper writes that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Sept. 9 that Ankara and Astana would increase cooperation in fight against terror organizations, particularly the Gulen network, widely believed to have been behind last year's failed coup attempt.

    "As Turkey, we are carrying out our struggle with FETO (Fethullahist Terrorist Organization) not just for ourselves but also for the security of our friends and brothers. I want to thank the Elder (Nazarbayev) for his support in this process. God wiling, we will eliminate this gang which threatens the national security of both countries by working in cooperation. We will further increase our cooperation at the point of fighting against terror organizations such as DEASH (Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant), FETO and al-Qaeda in the coming period," Erdogan told a joint press meeting with his Kazakh counterpart Nursultan Nazarbayev in Astana.

    Erdogan said Turkey and Kazakhstan established a strategic partnership in 2009, which turned into a corporate mechanism in 2012, the Turkey-Kazakhstan High Level Strategic Cooperation Council.

    Nazarbayev said: "We exchanged ideas about organizing the High Level Strategic Cooperation Council. We came to agreement on economic, commercial, and investment relations as well."

    He said Kazakhstan is a country that Turkey gives importance and priority to in terms of economic and commercial partnership, and that Turkey will host Nazarbayev next year for a new meeting.

    Erdogan and Nazarbayev will also attend the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) summit on Sunday. About 70 committee members of 57 countries are expected to attend the summit.

    Nazarbayev stressed that Turkey was one of the closest and trustworthy political and economic partners of Kazakhstan and that high level meetings should be done more frequently.

    [13] Israeli Ambassador: Turkey and Israel can enjoy cooperation not only in energy but also in other Sector...

    Turkish Hurriyet Daily News (10.09.17) published an interview with Israel's Ambassador to Turkey, Eitan Na'eh who spoke about Leviathan gas project and Cyprus.

    Touching on the Leviathan gas project, Ambassador Na'eh said the project seems possible and feasible, while he emphasized that Turkey and Israel can enjoy cooperation not only in energy but in other areas too, whether it is the construction and infrastructure sectors or the high-tech sector.

    Following are aspects of the interview:

    "D.S.: The Leviathan gas project that aims to transport natural gas from the Leviathan reserve to Europe via Turkey is one of the hot issues on the agenda. What is the latest about this project?

    E.N.: Israeli Energy Minister Yuval Steinitz made our position clear during his recent visit to Turkey. We have gas and want to sell gas; you need gas and want to buy gas. Having few suppliers, you want to diversify. Both the minister and president said publicly that it is important to diversify and secure the sources of supply and that the security of gas supply itself is just as imperative. These are important, well-defined statements. On the other hand, we have stated before that we want to export gas to Turkey. We have already started exporting gas to Jordan and want to expand it to Egypt. We will also be supplying gas to the Palestinian Authority. There are two projects, two pipelines that we look into and consider for our gas export. We have enough gas and can supply Europe with gas. Initial studies show that it is feasible. It was not so 8 years back; it looks more feasible these days. Europe wants to buy more gas, the Balkans need gas. It can all happen but will take some time for it is a much more complicated project. But these are the options, the possibilities. We are talking about exporting approximately 10 bcm of gas to Turkey already.

    It is up to Turkey to decide on the issues of quantity and so forth. The price is to be negotiated. It all depends on the commercial negotiations. I do not have the exact numbers to share with you at this time. By the time the project is finalized, we may be looking at different numbers. But the potential is there; the interest is there. Europe needs gas and wants to diversify the continent's gas supply, so does Turkey— it all seems possible and feasible.

    D.S.:Do you think the Cyprus issue may become a hindrance in establishing a deal?

    E.N.: We are still trying to solve our own conflict so I am afraid I cannot offer any advice to Turkey. We hope that negotiations between the sides will bring the Cyprus conflict to a resolution in accordance with international law. There is much to gain from an agreement as such. People would only benefit from it. We think that such an agreement would expedite the gas deal.

    It will boost other areas of cooperation as well, so we are waiting and hoping for a good solution that would satisfy both sides. […]"

    [14] Erdogan, Trump held phone conversation

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (09.09.17) reported that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and U.S. President Donald Trump held a phone conversation on Sept. 9, according to a statement from the Turkish Presidency.

    During the conversation, both leaders emphasized the significance of a continued cooperation for further strengthening bilateral relations and increasing stability in the region, the statement said.

    They also agreed to meet at the U.N. General Assembly later this month, it added.

    The White House also stated that the two leaders discussed working more closely to improve regional security.

    "President Trump emphasized the common commitment of the United States and Turkey to work together to increase regional stability," the White House said.

    [15] Commentary blames EU hypocrisy, AKP's problematic stance on rights for Turkey-EU tension

    Turkish Hurriyet (09.09.17) published the following commentary by Deniz Zeyre under the title: "How Will the Crisis With Europe End?"

    "The ongoing crisis in the bilateral ties with European countries such as Germany, France, and the Netherlands seriously damages Turkey's EU membership process. The Turkey-EU ties are undergoing the worst period since the Luxembourg summit held on 12-13 December 1997. The EU counties are discussing freezing the talks which had begun 13 years ago.

    Some of my readers have sent me messages which I can summarize as "We understand that there is a crisis with the EU, but you should write about how to overcome this crisis." I do not have a prescription for overcoming the crisis, but I can recall the road map of the Turkey-EU ties, which I have been monitoring uninterruptedly for 22 years, and I can talk about how the crises had been overcome in the past.

    I had followed the 1997 Luxembourg summit as the diplomacy correspondent of Radikal daily. The agenda items of the summit in question had been "Starting full membership talks with the 10 former Eastern Bloc countries, the Greek Cypriot Administration, and Malta." There had been expectations that Turkey would also be included in the EU's expansion process, but the EU leaders had blocked this. Despite Turkey's strong opposition, it had been decided to start full membership talks with the Greek Cypriot Administration.

    Mesut Yilmaz had then been Prime Minister and all European journalists were asking us whether or not Yilmaz would arrive to the summit. Yilmaz had not attended the summit, but when traveling to the United States, he had stopped in Brussels and he had issued the following call on the EU from the EU's capital: "We are cutting off political dialogue with the EU. If you launch talks with the Greek Cypriot Administration, we will launch the process of integrating with the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus.

    On that day the European Council had announced that it would not start talks with Turkey due to "political and economic reasons." In other words, according to the EU, Turkey had not been able to meet the Copenhagen criteria in the political field and the Maastricht criteria in the economic field.

    That day's crisis had been overcome after two years. We, the journalists, who had followed the Helsinki summit held on 10 and 11 December 1999 in the cold weather of Finland had returned with good news and bad news. Turkey had been declared a candidate, but the full membership talks had not begun. As for the talks with the Greek Cypriot Administration, they had officially begun.

    The fate of the elections had changed during the term of the AKP [Justice and Development Party] government which had gone into the EU agenda wholeheartedly. During the EU summit held in Helsinki in December 2004 it had been noted that Turkey's had completed its compliance with the Copenhagen criteria to a considerable degree and it had been announced that the access talks with Turkey would be launched without any delay. The fact that the reforms realized following the 2001 economic crisis had been put to practice by the AKP government word by word had paved the path for Turkey's compliance with the economic criteria.

    The AKP government had passed eight adaptation packages in the TBMM [Turkish Grand National Assembly] between 2002 and 2009 with the aim of complying with the political criteria. It was decided that capital punishment, which had been abolished earlier, would not be passed during "times of war." Retrial in line with the rulings of the European Court of human Rights [ECHR] was accepted. International agreements were considered superior to internal law. The status of the National Security Council was changed and the right to individually apply to the Constitutional Court was granted.

    As these developments were occurring, the EU engaged in double standards with regard to Turkey many times. However despite these double standards, the AKP government continued at full speed until 2009. President Tayyip Erdogan said "If necessary we will turn those standards into the Ankara standards and we will continue on our way" and he proceeded. Erdogan's pro-dialogue stand had even softened the stance of German Chancellor Angela Merkel who had strongly opposed Turkey's full membership in the EU.

    Today this picture has changed by 180 degrees. Yes, the EU countries' stance with regard to the FETO [Fethullah Gulen terrorist organization] and the PKK [Kurdistan Workers' Party] terrorist organizations is very distressing. They deserve the packing-needle. However, we should not forget that fundamental human rights issues such as "journalists under arrest," "the freedom of thought and expression," and "the right to fair trial," which we had assumed had become history with the reforms realized by the AKP government from 2002 to 2009, have begun to be problematic again. Had we been able to stick a needle to ourselves and to turn the EU criteria into the Ankara criteria, we would have been able to fling into their faces the EU's mistakes, lies, and hypocrisy regarding FETO and the PKK more strongly. TURKISH AFFAIRS SECTION

    (CS /AM)

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