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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Cypriot and Turkish Media Review, 17-10-11

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. 196/17 11.10.17


  • [01] Burcu's statement on the UNSG's report
  • [02] Ertugruloglu: "Turkish Ministers said that federation is not an option"; Derya: "Preventing the aid for aged persons makes you less humane"
  • [03] Reaction statements by political parties and NGO's representatives on the latest statements by Akdag and Ertugruloglu
  • [04] Reactions to transferring teachers from Turkey continue
  • [05] Columnist: The aim is to further Islamize the Turkish Cypriots
  • [06] "TRNC citizenship" to seven more persons
  • [07] The occupation regime continues the "distribution of rural plots of land"
  • [08] Disagreement among the party members of BKP over alliance with the TKP
  • [09] Atalay was "acquitted" from the accusations of allegedly having links with FETO organization
  • [10] Erdogan: "US envoy Bass is not welcome in Turkey"
  • [11] Y?ld?r?m slams US visa measures and questions relations
  • [12] Turkish businesses want immediate normalization in US-Turkey ties
  • [13] Columnists on the crisis between Turkey and the US
  • [14] Iraq to reopen oil pipeline to Turkey, bypassing one in KRG


    [01] Burcu's statement on the UNSG's report

    According to illegal Bayrak television (online, 11.10.17), Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci's office has evaluated the UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres' official report on Cyprus, drawing attention to its "shortcomings and positive aspects".

    In a written statement, Akinci's spokesman Bar?s Burcu argued that the report had refuted the Greek Cypriot side's narrative on the Conference on Cyprus which said that the Turkish Cypriot side was responsible for the collapse of the talks.

    He further claimed that the report had also made it clear that contrary to Greek Cypriot claims, the Conference on Cyprus had not only dealt with the issue of Security and Guarantees but also with all the other outstanding issues on the Cyprus problem.

    Burcu also alleged that Akinci's position that the negotiations could no longer be continued using the same methodology and that the issues should be taken up as part of a bigger package had been welcomed by the UN Secretary General in his report.

    "The 'Guterres Framework' which had been shared with the two sides in Crans Montana within the framework of the Conference on Cyprus was not completely reflected upon in the report. The changes and inadequacies in the wording used in the report upsets the balance of the framework put forward by the UN Secretary General", Burcu added.

    He further noted that mentioning in the report that there was almost full convergence on the issues of federal executive and active participation in decision making had led to misperceptions.

    Burcu also claimed that similar misperceptions had been created on the issue of independent authorities and bodies, as well as the Federal Public Service.

    "The reports failure to mention which side adopted a constructive approach on the property issue is also one of its shortcomings", Burcu said.

    He argued that the report's shortcoming included its failure to state which side failed to show the necessary political will in the talks, which side ran away from the negotiations held abroad and why some of the Confidence Building Measures had not been implemented.

    "The reports failure to make any mention of the plebiscite held in South Cyprus [government controlled area of the Republic of Cyprus] to mark the 'Enosis vote' in schools was also disappointing" he said, adding that the UN Secretary General had reportedly failed to mention that the Greek Cypriot side had resorted to delaying tactics to slow down the process.

    Also touching upon the positive aspects of the report, Burcu said that it was welcoming to see that the report had given room to the positive contributions made to the process by the Turkish Cypriot side.

    Burcu also said that it was abundantly clear that no result could be reached in the negotiations using the same method, modalities and with the same mentality and concluded by claiming: "We would like to use this opportunity to stress once again that the Greek Cypriot side needs to seriously change its mentality".

    [02] Ertugruloglu: "Turkish Ministers said that federation is not an option"; Derya: "Preventing the aid for aged persons makes you less humane"

    Turkish Cypriot daily Vatan newspaper (11.10.17) reports that tension was caused yesterday during the session of the breakaway regime's "assembly" between self-styled foreign minister, Tahsin Ertugruloglu and "deputies" from the Republican Turkish Party (CTP).

    Dogus Derya, "deputy" with the CTP, described Ertugruloglu's actions as "arbitrary" and his statements as "contradictory", because on the one hand he suggests that the Turkish Cypriots should "transfer their foreign affairs and defense" to Turkey and on the other hand he states that the "TRNC will live forever".

    Referring to the "tariffs" imposed by the occupation regime on the supplies and the aid to the Greek Cypriot and Maronite enclaved persons, Derya said: "[] These are grand mums, aunties, people with low income. By cutting these aids we are making state control. There could not be a state control in this manner. Before everything else, you must have conscience. By cutting this aid you become less humane and not more Turk. [] We are seen as a community which does not respect the freedom of religion and conscience. []"

    When Ertuguloglu referred to the "opposition' describing Turkish Cypriot leader Akinci as "your president", Derya recalled that Akinci was "elected" with 65% and argued that the will for a solution in Cyprus is in this percentage. "You are afraid of this will", she said to Ertugruloglu.

    On his part, Ertugruloglu replied to Derya and alleged: "If you want to exhibit enmity against Tahsin Ertugruloglu, continue doing it. In any case, this is our biggest weakness: The division. Both the Greek Cypriots and the international community have been using this for 50 years. [] The view you are representing is nothing else but submissiveness. [] You talk as if I or the UBP are the ones who isolate the Turkish Cypriots from the world. Your Greek Cypriot friends are the ones who do this. []"

    Referring to the "tariffs" on the aid sent to the enclaved persons, Ertugruloglu alleged: "Our concern is not to take money from tariffs. Our concern is to end the policy of the Greek Cypriots that 'we are offering aid to our hostage citizens living under occupation'. We will not allow for these people to be used in this political propaganda. If you agree with the views saying that the Greek Cypriots and the Maronites are hostages and the TRNC is under occupation, help yourself and say it. []"

    Noting that the imposition of "tariffs" was not his decision but this was decided by the "council of ministers", Ertugruloglu reiterated the allegation that they have established that the enclaved Greek Cypriots and Maronites have no needs and that if they have any needs the regime is ready to help.

    Referring to the Cyprus problem, Ertugruloglu also claimed: "A process of 50 years collapsed at Crans Montana. When the elections in the south ends, the negotiations will not start from the point they remained. Understand this. The option of federation ceased to exist. The statements made by Ministers from Turkey are there. The statement by your president is also there. [] The president prepared a map secretly from the government. [] It is not possible to return to the discussions for federation during which the international community describes the Greek Cypriot side as a state and the Turkish Cypriot side as community. If you are not annoyed by this picture, I have nothing to say. []"

    Alleging that the "new models" of solution are his own view, he claimed that he does not yearn for the annexation of the occupied area of Cyprus to Turkey. "I did not state this. Annexation is only one of the options", he alleged.


    [03] Reaction statements by political parties and NGO's representatives on the latest statements by Akdag and Ertugruloglu

    Turkish Cypriot daily Yeni Bakis newspaper (11.10.17) under the title: "The people do not have such a demand", reports that the recent statements made by Turkey's Deputy Prime Minister Responsible for Cyprus Affairs Recep Akdag in the Turkish press that the "TRNC's will for annexation with Turkey is on the table", caused several reactions.

    According to the paper, the chairman of the Social Democracy Party (TDP) Cemal Ozyigit, in a written statement, evaluated Akdag's recent statements as well as the latest statements by so-called foreign minister Tahsin Ertugruloglu, supporting that this approach is not right. "The Turkish Cypriots do not have a demand of being annexed to Turkey. The great majority of the Turkish Cypriots want peace and solution as it was envisaged in the Annan plan. Therefore, even though their wish for a solution was not realized neither during the period of the Annan plan nor during the Crans Montana, their hopes for solution still exist. The negotiation talks will be revived in a way right after the elections in the Greek Cypriot side. Until then, our aim should be to strengthen our structure, economy and democracy and to create a developed country that will be able to be self-administrated", Ozyigit argued.

    Ozyigit continued and supported that the Turkish Cypriot community never had a demand to be annexed with Turkey. "If the statements by Atalay are a plan B, then we reject it. [.]. This is a very dangerous approach which will put our country into the risk of new conflicts in the near future", Ozyigit further added.

    Also, in separate statements, the general secretary of the New Cyprus Party (YKP) Murat Kanatli argued that "Turkey does not want to have a province relationship with the TRNC. And this, because if it enters into a province's relationship with the TRNC, all rights deriving from the Republic of Cyprus will be lost".

    Kanatli further said that Turkey, which eyes to the island's natural resources, claims its "rights" as a guarantor country deriving from the Treaties of Guarantee and Alliance. "If Turkey establishes a province's relationship with the TRNC, these rights will be abolished", Kanatli said.

    Reactions were also expressed by several representatives of "trade unions" in the occupied area of Cyprus. The chairman of DEV-IS trade union Hasan Felek accused Ertugruloglu for always having in his mind the "annexation of the TRNC to Turkey", adding that "Ertugruloglu does not have the authority for speaking on behalf of the Turkish Cypriot community".

    Commenting on Akdag's statement, Felek pointed out that the Turkish Cypriots never had a demand for "annexation to Turkey", recalling that during the latest "elections" in the Turkish Cypriot community, the community voted in favor of peace, federation and for a United Cyprus.

    Also speaking, the "general secretary" of the "Turkish Cypriot teacher's trade union" (KTOS) Sener Elcil, stated that the issue of the "annexation of the TRNC to Turkey" was included in Turkey's agenda since 1950, adding, that Akdag's statements just put forward this thought. "This is an unacceptable situation for us, it is an imposition. This is a violation of the international law and an occupation policy. No politics were left in this country and thus it is meaningless to hold elections in this point. This is a message for the citizens to continue struggling against this regime", Elcil stated.


    [04] Reactions to transferring teachers from Turkey continue

    Turkish Cypriot daily Demokrat Bakis newspaper (11.10.17) reports that the self-styled ministry of education of the breakaway regime in the occupied area of Cyprus accused the primary and secondary school teachers' trade unions, KTOS and KTOEOS respectively, of misinforming the community on the issue of the teachers who will be brought to the occupied area of Cyprus from Turkey, in spite of the fact that these trade unions know that this will happen within the framework of the procedure of mutual exchange of teachers.

    In a written statement, the "ministry" said that the "protocol" for "cooperation in the fields of education, science, culture and know-how" had been signed with Turkey in 1994 and since then teachers from Turkey are appointed for a period of five years and every year nearly 30 new teachers are appointed to substitute those whose term of duty is completed. In exchange for this, five teachers from the occupied area of Cyprus are appointed in Turkey by the Turkish Ministry of Education. The "ministry" alleged that the trade unions have turned into their habit to "insult our state, our motherland, our national values and our national history with statements they make under the name of trade unions' right or freedom of thought".

    Meanwhile, Turkish Cypriot daily Afrika newspaper (11.10.17) reports that Asim Idris, general secretary of the Social Democracy Party (TDP), argued that appointing 167 teachers by the Turkish Ministry of Education in the occupied area of Cyprus "is not a correct practice". In a written statement, he accused self-styled minister of education Ozdemir Berova of not telling the truth when saying that they [the breakaway regime] demanded teachers in fields where needs exist, within the framework of the above-mentioned "agreement" with Turkey. He noted that when he had been "minister" of education in 2013, he rejected the demand to appoint 43 teachers from Turkey at the "Divinity College".

    On its front page, Afrika reports that while the Turkish Cypriot community is harmonized with the "religious fanatical education system which exists in Turkey", the trade unions react but the "government" ignores these reactions. Under the title "General strike for an indefinite period of time is absolutely necessary", the paper refers to the existence of imam preachers' schools in the occupied area and to school textbooks coming from Turkey and notes that now teachers will also be sent from Turkey.

    In a written statement issued yesterday, KTOS and KTOEOS described as "disrespect to the people of the country" the transfer of teachers from Turkey when thousands of unemployed "citizens of the TRNC" exist. The trade unions said that the main target of this action is the assimilation of the Turkish Cypriot community and the annexation to Turkey. Noting that Berova's main target is to "transfer to our country the reactionary education" the two unions added: "It is evident that the teachers who will come from Turkey will only bring the reactionary religious education aiming at growing vindictive and devout generations. The fact that 32 of these teachers are related with the religious education proved what the intention is".


    [05] Columnist: The aim is to further Islamize the Turkish Cypriots

    Under the title "Ah these protocols" columnist Mehmet Davulcu in Turkish Cypriot daily Ortam newspaper (11.10.17) assesses the "protocols" signed between Turkey and the breakaway regime and notes that no one knows what is written in them, because "in the majority of the protocols, the interests of the Turkish Cypriot community have not been protected". He writes the following:

    "[] They are obviously against this community. Therefore, if the public knew what these protocols include, it would convict those who have signed them. I guess that the Protocol for Cooperation in the Fields of Education, Science, Culture and Know-how signed in 1994 should be one of them. [] According to this protocol, every year teachers are sent from Turkey to Cyprus. While many unemployed teachers are waiting for a job, the trade unions oppose this practice and criticize the ministry. This criticism of the trade unions is appropriate and justified. The ministry of education tried to defend itself yesterday by issuing a statement. I say that 'it tried' because what it did was rather a confession and a counter-accusation. Let us look at the confession part. The ministry said: 'There is a protocol between Turkey and the TRNC renewed in 1994. According to this protocol, every year 30 teachers are appointed from Turkey in the TRNC and 5 from the TRNC in Turkey. This is what we did'.

    Have you understood now why I argued that the interests of the Turkish Cypriot people are not protected in these protocols? Every year 30 teachers will be appointed here from there! And in return, 5 teachers will be appointed there from here! Very well, why? With what aim? For satisfying which needs? [] Is it absolutely necessary to exchange teachers for cooperating in these fields? Moreover, this thing which they call exchange is a very unbalanced exchange. Are there no other ways for cooperation? Of course there are []. However, this is an issue of intention. Is the intention as it is written in the protocol or not? Behold, this is the actual question. Yesterday, that secret intention had been 'to further Turkify'. Today is to 'further Islamize'. []"


    [06] "TRNC citizenship" to seven more persons

    Turkish Cypriot daily Yeni Duzen newspaper (11.10.17) reports that the "coalition government" continues to grant "exceptional or mandatory citizenships" with a decision of the "council of ministers".

    The "council of ministers" justified its decision according to "article 9, paragraph (1), clause (c) and (b) of the citizenship law" for the new seven "citizenships", which went into effect by being published in the "official gazette" on October 7, 2017.

    The paper stresses that the latest decisions of the "council of ministers" do not ask for the condition "residing in the country" or "the decision for settlement". The names of those who obtained the "citizenships" are published in the paper.


    [07] The occupation regime continues the "distribution of rural plots of land"

    Turkish Cypriot daily Gunes newspaper (11.10.17) reports that so-called prime minister Huseyin Ozgurgun, in a ceremony organized yesterday at the occupied village of Piyi, announced the "distribution of 32 plots of land in rural areas" in the occupied villages of Piyi, Maratha and Santallari, to young couples.

    Speaking during the ceremony, Ozgurgun claimed that "our main worry is to continue the development of the TRNC, to increase our investments and protect our territories for our youth and their future".


    [08] Disagreement among the party members of BKP over alliance with the TKP

    Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris newspaper (11.10.17) reports that the twelve members of the committee of the United Cyprus Party (BKP) argued that the call from their leader Izzet Izcan for an extraordinary meeting of the party is "irregular" and violates their party constitution.

    In a written statement, the twelve members of BKP committee argued that the election of new party organs on the extraordinary assembly agenda, which Izcan announced through the newspapers, is not possible and violates the party constitution.

    During the meeting of the BKP on September 28, it was announced that the BKP committee rejected the protocol signed by their leader Izcan for cooperation with the Communal Liberation Party New Forces (TKP- YG). Despite the decision of the committee to reject this protocol, Izcan asked the party to ratify the BKP-TKP protocol by discussing it again. The party committee considered that their first decision was binding. They also asked from their party leader to do his duties by not harming any more the party.


    [09] Atalay was "acquitted" from the accusations of allegedly having links with FETO organization

    Turkish Cypriot daily Diyalog newspaper (11.10.17) under the title: "Atalay was acquitted", reports that the "chairman of the religious affairs department" Talip Atalay, who was accused of allegedly having links with the FETO organization of Fetullah Gulen, believed to have orchestrated the failed July 15 coup in Turkey, was found innocent of any accusations against him.

    According to the paper, after the investigation carried out by the "prosecution office" in Mersin, Turkey, it was announced that Atalay will not be prosecuted.

    Atalay was arrested in Mersin, Turkey in the framework of the operation against persons involved with the FETO organization.


    [10] Erdogan: "US envoy Bass is not welcome in Turkey"

    Turkish daily Sabah newspaper (online, 10.10.17) reports that President Recep Tayyip Erdogan slammed the U.S. Ambassador to Ankara John Bass Tuesday for his role in the suspension of non-immigrant visa services at the U.S. Embassy and Consulates in Turkey, which created a crisis between the two states, saying that he is not considered representative of the U.S. He said that Turkish officials, including Ministers, have not accepted farewell visits from the outgoing Ambassador, adding: "Bass is not considered the representative of the U.S. anymore."

    Erdogan said that if a Turkish Ambassador made a similar decision in the U.S., Ankara would immediately recall the envoy, noting that he finds it strange that the U.S. made the decision without having any discussions with the Turkish Foreign Minister. Speaking at a joint news conference with Serbian President Aleksandar Vucic in Belgrade, Erdogan criticized the U.S. decision to suspend visa applications for Turkish citizens. He urged the U.S. to recall its Ambassador in Ankara if he acted on his own in suspending visa services in Turkey. "There is nothing to discuss with the U.S. if the administration initiated the visa row," Erdogan said, adding that if the decision was made by the envoy himself, then he should be removed from duty.

    Amid the crisis, both Turkey's government and opposition have shown a common stance against the suspension of non-immigrant visa applications by U.S. missions in Turkey. The parties have agreed on the fact that what the U.S. has done is wrong and contrary to the alliance between the two countries.

    [11] Y?ld?r?m slams US visa measures and questions relations

    According to Ankara Anatolia news agency (10.10.17), Prime Minister Binali Y?ld?r?m, speaking at the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) group meeting at Parliament, said on Oct. 10 that the United States' decision to suspend visa services in Turkey "does not comply with the alliance" and Washington should use "common sense".

    He added that the suspension of visa services in Turkey "punishes ordinary citizens" and the problem must be resolved immediately "through dialogue".

    Y?ld?r?m claimed that security concerns were "not the real reason" behind the decision to suspend the visa service because the Turkish government had offered additional security measures upon an earlier request by the Embassy, but the U.S. mission refused.

    He said Turkish prosecutors are investigating certain people working in U.S. diplomatic missions for possible links to the Fethullahist Terrorist Organization (FETO), stressing that "no one is above the law in Turkey" and Ankara "does not need Washington's permission" to prosecute Turkish citizens.

    "Did you ask us before jailing a deputy director general of one of our state banks when on duty in your country?" Y?ld?r?m said, referring to Hakan Atilla, the deputy general manager of Turkey's Halkbank who was arrested in the U.S. for "alleged" violations of sanctions against Iran.

    "And why are you still harboring the heinous head of the July 15 coup attempt?"

    He also again slammed the U.S. for its ongoing support to the Syrian Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG) in the campaign against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL). "The U.S. should immediately abandon embracing the YPG if our alliance is to continue. Doing business with our enemies does not suit the nature of alliance," Y?ld?r?m said.

    [12] Turkish businesses want immediate normalization in US-Turkey ties

    According to Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (online, 10.10.17), Turkey's leading business groups have voiced their hope for an immediate lowering in recent tension between Ankara and Washington, stressing the need for diplomacy to ease the crisis.

    The Turkish Union of the Chamber and Commodity Exchanges (TOBB) head Rifat Hisarc?kl?oglu said Turkey and the U.S. have deep-rooted bilateral ties as two key NATO members. "The strength of bilateral relations has fueled our hopes about an easing of the problem through dialogue. We believe the issue will be resolved in a short time through diplomatic means," Hisarc?kl?oglu added on Oct. 9.

    The International Investors Association (YASED) President Ahmet Erdem also voiced its members' expectation for a resolution in the political tension through diplomatic channels. "We want to see an immediate normalization in bilateral ties," said Erdem.

    The head of the Independent Industrialist and Businessmen Association (MUSIAD), seen as being close to the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP), had previously said on Oct. 9 that he believes Ankara and Washington will resolve the issue surrounding the U.S. decision to suspend non-immigrant visa operations at its diplomatic facilities in Turkey "with common sense as soon as possible."

    [13] Columnists on the crisis between Turkey and the US

    All columnists, writing in Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News newspaper (online, 11.10.17), believe that the latest Turkey-US crisis is one of the worst between the two countries.

    Columnist Sedat Ergin, under the title "Latest Turkey-US crisis is unlike any other before", argues that the current crisis between the two countries looks like no crisis we have ever come across in the history of Turkey-U.S. relations. He added: "There have been many incidents in the past in which relations hit rock bottom, such as the weapons embargo placed by the Congress in the 1970s and the Turkish Parliament vote on March 1, 2003 refusing the passage of U.S. soldiers to Iraq (followed by U.S. soldiers placing a sack over Turkish soldiers' heads in Suleymaniye on July 4, 2003). But the latest crisis seems unique. () This time, with the visa ban, communication on a human level has received a severe blow. The results of this ban will spread across a large area from sports to education, from culture to health."

    Ergin also writes that it is an absurd situation that two countries in the same defence alliance, who formally consider an attack against the other to be an attack against themselves, and who are committed to helping each other in that situation, have now imposed visa bans on each other's citizens.

    Columnist Ahu Ozyurt, under the title "Diplomacy on a rollercoaster", argues that this crisis is another chapter in the worsening relations between the two NATO allies. She believes that without links to the Turkish police departments, Topuz would not even have been able to get that job under normal circumstances. He most likely had some pretty big brothers in the Turkish government who pushed for his employment and promotion. And they are not limited to the Gulenists.

    Columnist Serkan Demirtas, under the title "Interesting deja vu in Turkey-US ties", writes that the recent crisis amounts to a new low point in bilateral relations. He argues that the current feud is a reflection of a more structural conflict between Ankara and Washington. The strategic dimension of Turkey-U.S. ties has almost vanished and increasing numbers of people in Washington are questioning the value of the alliance with Turkey.

    Columnist Erdal Saglam, under the title "Unfortunate timing for a crisis with the US", writes that it is certain that the economy will pay a heavy price if the crisis is not resolved at once, or if it gets more complex. He added that "both sides cannot risk a worsening of the crisis and that improving bilateral relations would benefit both parties. Those who defend such notion expect the crisis to cool down within a week or two. There are also those who say it is surprising that the crisis shook the currency levels to this extent."

    Columnist Murat Yetkin, under the title "Can there be a winner in the US-Turkey skirmish?", commenting on Yildirim's statements regarding the ongoing crisis with the U.S., believes that the statements were unusually strong. He added: "Some of the AKP Deputies listening to Y?ld?r?m's speech though this strong rhetoric could be part of an attempt to blow the steam off of public opinion, expecting the tension to cool down through diplomacy as Erdogan had used rather moderate language a day before during his visit to Kiev. However, those thoughts proved to be wishful thinking, as Erdogan also spoke harshly in Belgrade just a few hours after Y?ld?r?m."

    He further writes: "But it is not very clear how the many piled-up problems between the two will be solved at a time when diplomacy is about to be replaced by skirmishes between the two countries. Washington and Ankara have a lot of common interests in the problematic region surrounding Turkey: The Caucasus, the Black Sea and Russia, the Balkans, the Eastern Mediterranean and the Middle East. That cooperation extends as far as Afghanistan in one direction and Somalia in the other."

    He concluded by saying that "there can be no net winner of this tension between Turkey and the U.S. A solution must be found through dialogue and diplomacy, and the friends of both countries should consider assisting if necessary."

    [14] Iraq to reopen oil pipeline to Turkey, bypassing one in KRG

    According to Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (online, 11.10.17), Iraq will reopen an old crude oil pipeline to Turkey which bypasses one operated by the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG), the Oil Ministry said in a statement on Oct. 10, as reported by Reuters.

    Iraqi Oil Minister Jabar al-Luaibi has asked state-owned North Oil Co., the operator of the Kirkuk fields, the State Company for Oil Projects and the state pipeline company to begin the process of restoring and reopening the Kirkuk - Ceyhan pipeline.

    The Ministry also said it aims to increase exports through the pipeline to 400,000 barrels per day.

    The Kirkuk - Ceyhan pipeline crosses territory taken by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) militants in 2014 and recaptured by U.S.-backed Iraqi forces over the past two years.


    (DPs / AM)

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