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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Press and Other Media, 04-06-28

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 PRESS AND OTHER MEDIA No.120/04 26-27-28.06.04

[A] NEWS ITEMS

  • [01] President Bush meets the Turkish Prime Minister. Efforts by Turkey to exploit its strategic position to cover its crimes against Cyprus after the genocide against the Armenians, the Greeks of Pontus and the Kurds.
  • [02] The Turkish Foreign Minister on the meeting between President Bush and the President of Turkey.
  • [03] The occupation regime is trying to show that it is in favor of human rights.
  • [04] The Turkish Cypriots continue their efforts for strengthening their relations with the Islamic world.
  • [05] New formula for the representation of the Turkish Cypriots at the PACE.
  • [06] Osman Kurt was elected president of the Turkish Cypriot Journalists' Union.
  • [07] Talat met with the Ambassador of Palestine to Ankara who went to occupied Cyprus for the graduation ceremony of an illegal university.
  • [B] COMMENTARIES, EDITORIALS AND ANALYSIS

  • [08] Columnist in RADIKAL alleges that President Bush“s credibility is bound to the US support for Turkey“s crimes against the Republic of Cyprus.

  • [A] NEWS ITEMS

    [01] President Bush meets the Turkish Prime Minister. Efforts by Turkey to exploit its strategic position to cover its crimes against Cyprus after the genocide against the Armenians, the Greeks of Pontus and the Kurds

    Ankara TRT 2 Television (27.06.04) broadcast that the meeting of Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan with President George Bush lasted for approximately one hour. This meeting actually was more of a quintette rather than a bilateral meeting. Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul, US Secretary of State Colin Powell, and President Bush's National Security Adviser Condoleeza Rice were also present at the meeting. It is being reported that all the issues that can be discussed between Turkey and the United States were discussed in a clear and open manner.

    As to the Turkish side's views, the Cyprus issue was given priority at the meeting. With regard to the Cyprus issue, previous openings were explained and expectations expressed. The wish to have concrete steps launched on the areas of Cyprus under Turkish military control since the barbaric invasion of 1974 was expressed and it was explained that the EU should not be waited to this end.

    The Iraqi issue was raised later. The importance of safeguarding the territorial integrity of Iraq was reiterated as well as the need to enable more high-level participation for the Turkomans in Iraq. The sensitivity on the issue of Kirkuk was also expressed at the meeting, pointing out that Baghdad is the same as Kirkuk. It was also said that Kirkuk should be the place where all the Iraqis will be represented.

    In addition, the developments concerning PKK/Kongra-Gel [Workers Party of Kurdistan/People's Congress of Kurdistan] were also raised at the meeting. The uneasiness at not having any concrete steps launched in this regard was expressed and any terrorist activities against Turkey from the region, which is under US control, was unacceptable. The uneasiness felt to this end was expressed. The fact that Turkey will open a chief consulate in Mosul was noted.

    Afghanistan, NATO, and Israel were also discussed at the meeting. It was noted that Turkey will contribute to the process, whereby stability and prosperity will be secured in Afghanistan, and the important role assumed by Hikmet Cetin stressed.

    As to the NATO issue, support was extended to the new NATO mission. On the issue of Israel, it was conveyed to the US side that Turkey can be an active participator in the peace meetings between Palestine and Israel.

    Cooperation between the two countries was taken up at the meeting in addition to cooperation on terrorism--coordination on the international fight against terrorism. It was noted at the meeting that the terrorist organization PKK/Kongra-Gel is part of international organization and the need for eradicating the PKK/Kongra-Gel as soon as possible was reiterated.

    The kidnapped three Turkish workers was also raised at the meeting. It was noted that the judiciary process for the workers should be launched immediately if they have to be brought to court, otherwise, they should be released.

    As to the US views, President Bush noted that they share Turkey's sensitivity on PKK/Kongra-Gel saying: Yes, you are right. We will take concrete steps on this issue. We will enable the new administration to be put into action. We will do whatever we can. Thanking Turkey for its contribution in Afghanistan, President Bush said that the same views were shared on Iraq.

    On the Cyprus issue, it was said at the meeting concrete steps will be taken as soon as possible and that preparations to this end are under way.

    Another important issue was the $8.5-billion US loan. Both the Turkish and US sides confirmed that this loan was shelved. The Turkish side said the following: We do not want to use this loan under these conditions.

    [02] The Turkish Foreign Minister on the meeting between President Bush and the President of Turkey

    Ankara TRT 2 Television (27.06.04) broadcast the following: "US President George Bush's historic Ankara visit has begun. This historic visit began with an official welcoming ceremony. President Sezer received President Bush. The Turkish and US national anthems were played. Later the honor guard was inspected. Afterwards, President Bush and President Sezer, accompanied by their spouses posed for photos. After the photo session, the presidents held a meeting. This meeting, which is still in session, has a limited number of participants. In addition to the two presidents, Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul, US Secretary of State Colin Powell and other officials are participating in this meeting. This meeting will continue during a working luncheon. After the luncheon President Bush and President Sezer will leave for Istanbul to participate in the NATO summit.

    We have other notes from the Cankaya Mansion. We asked various questions to Gul. According to the information supplied by Gul, issues concerning the terrorist PKK/KONGRA-GEL [Workers Party of Kurdistan/People's Congress of Kurdistan] organization, Cyprus, and Kirkuk were discussed at the meeting. President Bush said that he shares Turkey's concerns especially on the issue of PKK/KONGRA-GEL. President Bush said the following: The PKK represents for you what al-Qaida represents for us. We are aware of this. He thus agreed with Turkey's sensitivities on the issue. Moreover, Turkey expressed its concerns and sensitivities over Kirkuk. In the same manner, President Bush said that he agreed with Turkey on the issue.

    Then the Cyprus package was raised at the meeting held at the Cankaya Mansion. Within this framework, the situation of the Ercan [Tymbou] Airport was discussed. Ankara once again expressed at this platform its expectations about concrete steps being taken with regards to the `TRNC“ as soon as possible. Furthermore, the $8.5 billion economic aid package was also discussed. Work on the issue is continuing. Ankara again conveyed the message that this aid will be used if it is needed.

    Gul was asked whether a request for bases was submitted. In response, Gul said that this issue was not included on the agenda.

    Meanwhile, Turkish-US bilateral talks have begun. These talks are still in progress. We will continue to follow the developments."

    [03] The occupation regime is trying to show that it is in favour of human rights

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (28.06.04) reports that the so-called Prime Minister of the occupation regime, Mehmet Ali Talat has submitted to the "council of ministers" of the regime five basic international agreements and protocols on the issue of human rights in the countries members or candidate-members of the EU, within the framework of the harmonization process of the occupied areas of Cyprus with the Union.

    According to the paper, the five agreements and protocols are the following: Agreement on Personal and Political Rights, International Agreement on Economic, Communal and Cultural Rights, International Agreement regarding Lifting Any Kind of Racial Discrimination, Agreement against Tortures and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Humiliating Behaviours or Punishments and Second Optional Protocol to the International Agreement for Personal and Political Rights aiming at lifting the Death Penalty.

    In a written statement, Mr Talat supports that this efforts are being made within the framework of the process of applying the Copenhagen Criteria, which include also principles such as showing respect to democracy and the human right.

    The above-mentioned agreements will enter into force in occupied Cyprus after they are approved by the "assembly" of the occupation regime.

    [04] The Turkish Cypriots continue their efforts for strengthening their relations with the Islamic world

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (27.06.04) reports that the General Secretary and the deputy General Secretary of the Islamic Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Aqeel Ahmet Al Jaseem and Attiya Nawazish have made an one day official visit to the occupied areas of Cyprus and met with the chairmen of the Turkish Cypriot Chambers of Commerce and Industry, Ali Erel and Salih Tunar. After their meeting with Mr Erel and Mr Tunar they met also the so-called Prime Minister of the occupation regime, Mehmet Ali Talat.

    In his statements, Mr Talat said that they are very seriously continuing the efforts for being unified with the world, that they want to develop their relations with the Islamic world and that the visit of the officials of the Islamic Chamber of Commerce and Industry was important. "Your help and support for the development of the Turkish Cypriot economy is very important and necessary for us", said Mr Talat.

    Furthermore, Mr Al Jaseem expressed his satisfaction for being in the occupied areas of Cyprus and added that they sincerely want the increase of the volume of trade between the Islamic countries and the occupied areas of Cyprus. "Our request from the Prime Minister is that they should encourage the businessmen and the merchants to unify with the Islamic world and develop their cooperation", said Mr Al Jaseem.

    [05] New formula for the representation of the Turkish Cypriots at the PACE

    Under the title "Separate representation at the Council of Europe", Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (26.06.04) reports that the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) has developed a new formula for the representation of the Turkish Cypriots.

    The final decision for the new formula will be taken in October, according to Republican Turkish Party (RTP) "MP", Mr Ozdil Nami who had participated in PACE meeting and returned on Thursday night to the occupied areas after staying for five days in Strasbourg with other two Turkish Cypriot "MPs", Hasan Taccoy (National Unity Party) and Mustafa Gokmen (Democratic Party).

    If the formula is approved, continues KIBRIS, the Turkish Cypriot "MPs" will be represented in all the meetings of PACE as "the elected representatives of the Turkish Cypriots". They will have one full member and one substitute member, who will have the right to address the meetings without being able to vote.

    Mr Nami said that the developments were positive for the Turkish Cypriots and that during their five-day stay in Strasbourg they met with the heads of all the political groups at the Council of Europe and had separate meetings with the delegations of countries such as Germany, France, Norway and Finland. Mr Nami noted that they discussed with all these delegations what their countries are planning to do on the issue of lifting the "isolation" of the Turkish Cypriots and asked them to take the issue to their parliaments.

    "I could easily say that there is an extremely positive climate for the Turkish Cypriots, they want to help", said Mr Nami noting that still there were not any formulas on the issue of how the aid will be made.

    [06] Osman Kurt was elected president of the Turkish Cypriot Journalists' Union

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRISLI newspaper (27.06.04) reports that Mr Osman Kurt was elected as the new president of the Turkish Cypriot Journalists' Union, during the general assembly of the Union held yesterday in occupied Cyprus.

    As the paper writes, the issue of the attacks of the occupation regime against the Turkish Cypriot journalists was discussed at the meeting. Mr Suleyman Erguclu, the previous president of the Union stated that the Turkish Cypriot journalists must take measures against these attacks. In addition, after a proposal, a committee was formed in order to prepare a plan for bringing the attack cases in front of a so-called court.

    [07] Talat met with the Ambassador of Palestine to Ankara who went to occupied Cyprus for the graduation ceremony of an illegal university

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (26.06.04) reports that the so-called Prime Minister of the pseudostate Mr Mehmet Ali Talat met on Friday with Mr Fuat Yasin, the Ambassador of Palestine to Ankara. During the meeting, which was held at the so-called Prime Minister“s office in occupied Nicosia, the two men evaluated the latest developments in the Cyprus problem.

    In addition, Turkish Cypriot daily ORTAM (27.06.04) writes that Mr Fuat Yasin participated in the graduation ceremony of the illegal Near East University, which was held on Saturday.

    Mr Jama El-Sheikh Ahmed, the Ambassador of Sudan to Ankara, and Mr Cemil Hasanli, deputy of the Parliament of Azerbaijan, also participated in the ceremony.


    [B] COMMENTARIES, EDITORIALS AND ANALYSIS

    [08] Columnist in RADIKAL alleges that President Bush“s credibility is bound to the US support for Turkey“s crimes against the Republic of Cyprus

    Istanbul RADIKAL newspaper (27.06.04) publishes the following commentary by Murat Yetkin under the title: "Palace's message is ready":

    "Today President Sezer will tell US President Bush: `Do not lose any more of your credibility. Our expectations regarding the PKK and Cyprus continue“

    President Ahmet Necdet Sezer will tell US President George Bush, with whom he will meet today, that in order for his country not to lose any further credibility in the eyes of the Turkish people, new steps are expected regarding both the PKK and Cyprus. Top-level sources who provided information to RADIKAL have said that Sezer, in the meeting that he will have with Bush, will concentrate on certain points, without raising too many topics or going into detail. According to the view that came out of the "Bush Visit and NATO Summit" situation assessment meeting held on 25 June in the Cankaya Residence, Sezer will primarily emphasize, in his meeting with Bush, the PKK presence and the situation of the Turkomans in Iraq, as well as the elimination of the international isolation of the `Cyprus Turkish State“.

    One high-level source assessed Cankaya's views on these topics as follows:

    "It is being observed that, due to the situation in Iraq, the United States is experiencing a credibility problem in the region. This is valid in terms of Turkish public opinion as well. We believe that there is no difference between the terrorism of the PKK and the terrorism of Al-Qa'ida. And American officials, in the speeches they give, say the same thing.

    "This is good. But expectations still remain in terms of the commitments that the United States has made, to the effect that the PKK presence in Iraq will be eliminated.

    "In addition, attention has to be shown for the protection of Iraq's territorial integrity and political unity, and for the proper representation of the Turkomans in the governing echelons of the new structure.

    "As for the Cyprus issue, Turkey and the Turkish side have demonstrated their good will. After the emergence of the current situation, it was promised that the international isolation of the Turkish Cypriots would be eased. Although there has been certain work on this issue, no steps have yet been taken. There could be a request from us that the US President both take steps on this issue and utilize his influence vis-ą-vis other countries and organizations."

    It is expected that Sezer will also touch upon the Afghanistan issue, and will confirm Turkey's support for the activities of NATO in Afghanistan. According to the schedule, Sezer will first have a one-on-one meeting with Bush. Thereafter, there will be a lunch at Cankaya in which Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan and Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul, as well as National Security Advisor Condoleeza Rice and Secretary of State Colin Powell, From the US side, will also take part.

    Erdogan's Talking Points

    Prime Minister Erdogan will also have a separate meeting with US President Bush. It is expected that this meeting will be longer and more comprehensive than the one with Sezer, and that it will include a number of topics.

    Some of these topics are as follows:

    Iraq-Kirkuk-PKK: Included among the topics to which Erdogan, just like Sezer, will ascribe the most important will be the maintenance of Iraq's territorial integrity and political unity, Kirkuk's not being given over to Kurdish control, and sufficient representation of the Turkomans in the echelons of the Iraqi government in the period prior to the elections. The fact that the PKK, which is based in an Iraq that is under the control of US occupation forces, declared at a press conference that it will resume attacks in Turkey, and thereafter began to kill people, despite the United States' having declared that steps would be taken to ensure it would no longer be a threat, has increased the sensitivity in Ankara. Erdogan will call upon Bush to implement the commitments that were made.

    Afghanistan: This topic, which is one of the most important topics on the agenda of the NATO summit in Istanbul, is also important for Turkey. It is expected that Turkey will provide active support, including the dispatch of new units, to the expansion of the operations area in this first test of NATO outside its own geographical region.

    Greater Middle East: From the standpoint of the United States, the NATO summit is the final link in the series of meetings, including the Arab League, the G-8 summit, and yesterday's EU-US summit in Ireland, to put into operation the project to promote democracy and open societies in the Middle East. The Greater Middle East Initiative, as it currently stands, is quite different from the form in which it was first brought up by the United States. From Turkey's standpoint, it is now at a more satisfactory point in terms of Turkey's being considered not a model country, but rather a common founding partner as an example of a secular democracy, as well as in terms of the Israel-Palestine dispute's being included in the project and priority being ascribed to internal dynamics.

    Israel-Palestine: Erdogan is aware that the things he has said on Nazi concentration camps and anti-Semitism recently in criticizing the Israeli government's actions in Palestine have had a negative impact on the [US] Jewish community, which is influential over the US government and has always been close to Turkey. He will once again, with Bush, be insistent that this dispute absolutely must, and in particular within the framework of the democratization of the Middle East, enter into a process of solution.

    Cyprus-EU: Just like Sezer, Erdogan as well will indicate the importance of concrete steps being taken as soon as possible for the elimination of the isolation of the Cypriot Turks. Erdogan had earlier observed that for the United States to exert excessive influence had backfired in terms of EU membership. Despite this, it will be suggested in the talks that there are still areas in which the United States could utilize its influence in terms of a negotiations date.

    In addition, the reopening of the Halki Island Greek Orthodox theological seminary and relations with Armenia will be among the topics of discussion".

    /SK


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