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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Press and Other Media, 05-04-26

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.78/05 26.04.05

[A] NEWS ITEMS

  • [01] Unwin: More cases lined up.
  • [02] Mr Mehmet Ali Talat expects renewed activity over the Cyprus problem in the next few days.
  • [03] MILLIYET´S correspondent on the words used by President Bush on the Armenian genocide.
  • [04] After President Bush´s wording on the Armenian genocide the Turkish Council of Ministers approved the US request on Incirlik.
  • [05] RPP deputy leader criticizes President Bush remarks on the Armenian genocide.
  • [06] Statements by the President of Turkey´s constitutional court sparks new debate on headdress.
  • [07] Mr Gul reacts to Bumin's warning on headscarves.
  • [08] Unemployment rate 11.5% in Turkey.
  • [09] The orchestrated campaign against President Papadopoulos, which started by Talat and Ankara, was taken over by the Turkish Cypriot press.
  • [10] Turkish Cypriots from UK in action in Brussels over so-called isolations.
  • [11] Two hundred fifty bags of sugar, which were to be exported illegally to Turkey, were found in occupied Kyrenia port.
  • [B] COMMENTARIES, EDITORIALS AND ANALYSIS

  • [12] American lawyer who owns property in occupied Cyprus assesses the Orams court case arguing that the Real War Begins.

  • [A] NEWS ITEMS

    [01] Unwin: More cases lined up

    Under the above title weekly newspaper CYPRUS TODAY (23-29.04.05) reports the following: A Greek Cypriot couple this week filed for a European arrest warrant against a `TRNC´ estate agent, claiming he was building on their land. The businessman´s lawyer said he believed there could be as many as 300 similar cases lined up. But don´t worry was the message from property campaigners to home-owners in the wake of the complaint filed by Despina and Christos Mazios against Mark Unwin, of Unwin Estate Agents.

    US lawyer Shelley White, chairman of the European Property Association of Northern Cyprus (Eupro), said the legislation under which the warrant was being sought breached European law.

    However, she cautioned: But (readers) might consider not crossing to the Greek Cypriot side or coming to Cyprus via Larnaca or Limassol.

    The request by the Mazioses, who claim the firm Mr Unwin runs with his wife, Hayran, is building on their land near Catalkoy (occupied Ayios Epiktitos), is the first to be made since last month´s decision by the Greek Cypriot Parliament to increase to two years the jail term for illegal possession and use of immovable property, intending to pave the way for arrest warrants to be issued against Europeans holding former Greek Cypriot properties in the `TRNC´.

    I have no idea which property they are referring to, said Mr Unwin yesterday. As a company we do not develop property ourselves. We sell them.

    His lawyer confirmed: The Greek Cypriot side is under the impression Mr Unwin is in the development business, but he isn´t. He is an agent and sells properties that are developed by others.

    He added: This is a new line of attack. It is the first of a string of casese that are expected. The rumours we are hearing are that there are 300 more. They have chosen Mr Unwin as a pilot case probably to make a statement against British buyers. But any person currently using Greek Cypriot property comes within (the scope of) this offence. This also involves hotels, all the developers, and owners of houses on former Greek Cypriot properties. This involves everyone, no matter what nationality they are.

    Mrs White commented: There is a rumour that there are a number of cases against other estate agents and arrest warrants will be issued against them. It is inconceivable that it is a coincidence. Clearly it is being orchestrated at (Greek Cypriot) government level.

    She added: I am surprised by the attack because it would be easier to pick off these agents one at a time in the style of the Orams case. Pursuing many of them at the same time provides the common cause that will unite (the agents) and make them fight together. Also Eupro has been approached by the Unwins and we will be getting involved too.

    Mr Unwin said: We have received overwhelming support from other estate agents, constructors, suppliers and lawyers and other people. They all recognize it is an action by Greek Cypriots to cripple the economy in the North. We won´t allow it.

    On the same issue, as Turkish Cypriot CYPRUS TIMES newspaper (26.04.05) writes, Mr Mark Unwin, of Unwin Estate Agents, who is being served with a European arrest warrant from the Republic of Cyprus, for selling illegally Greek Cypriot properties, stated that he will fight it all the way. Attorneys representing Unwins who came to the free areas of the Republic on Monday to receive instructions regarding the solicitors, commented that The Greeks will have trouble making it stick, referring to the arrest warrant. Moreover, Hayran Unwin, the wife of Mark Unwin, alleged that she cannot understand why the Greek Cypriots are taking this stand because, as she claimed regarding the fact that her husband and she sell Greek Cypriot properties, they have done nothing wrong.

    [02] Mr Mehmet Ali Talat expects renewed activity over the Cyprus problem in the next few days

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (25.04.05) reported from occupied Lefkosia that Mr Mehmet Ali Talat has designated Ferdi Sabit Soyer, RTP (Republican Turkish Party) deputy leader to establish the new so-called government.

    Stressing that Soyer has 15 days to fulfill his task, Talat expressed the hope that the new administration will secure the Republican Assembly's vote of confidence.

    Mr Mehmet Ali Talat received Soyer and the delegation accompanying him today. In a statement after the meeting, he said that he designated Soyer to establish the new government and wished him success.

    Asserting that the presidency will work with the new government in harmony, Talat said that he will cooperate with the government particularly on the Cyprus problem. Stressing that he expects renewed activity on the Cyprus problem during the next few days, he asserted: "Within that framework, I wish to work with the government in harmony. What I want more than anything else is the establishment of an administration that will facilitate our cooperation."

    Recalling that the RTP asked him to be the deputy leader after Talat was elected President, Soyer said that he plans to establish the new government before the 15-day period expires. Stressing that he already held preparatory talks with the Democratic Party, Soyer noted that he believed that they will be able to quickly establish the new government.

    Soyer asserted that they will establish a constructive dialogue with the President, the opposition parties in the Republican Assembly, the civilian organizations, and the universities, and noted: "Naturally, we will establish a dialogue with the Turkish Government and cooperate with it to realize a solution that will pave the way for equality between the Turkish and Greek Cypriots. We will cooperate with the Turkish Government in our effort to develop our community's economy and social and democratic structure."

    [03] MILLIYET´S correspondent on the words used by President Bush on the Armenian genocide

    Istanbul MILLIYET newspaper (25.04.05) reported the following by Washington Correspondent Yasemin Congar:

    Another 24 April has come and gone, and the US President this year as well did not say "genocide".

    But Bush's message yesterday, no matter how much it did not meet the Armenian lobby's demand for "official recognition of the genocide", still, according to this lobby, "contains the dictionary definition of genocide".

    There are two main reasons that Bush did not use the expression "Armenian genocide".

    The White House, first of all, does not want "new reactions against the United States to come about within Turkish public opinion, or problems to be experienced in the Ankara-Washington relationship".

    Secondly, Washington considers that the inclusion of the word "genocide" in the President's 24 April message would not contribute to the normalization of relations between Turkey and Armenia, but to the contrary it would make this more difficult.

    [04] After President Bush´s wording on the Armenian genocide the Turkish Council of Ministers approved the US request on Incirlik

    Ankara TRT 1 Television (25.04.05) broadcast the following:

    Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul has said that the US request for the use of the Incirlik Air Base for logistics purposes has been accepted and that the decision to that effect has been signed by the Council of Ministers.

    Foreign Minister Gul replied to the questions put to him on the Incirlik Air Base prior to his departure from the Esenboga Airport for Luxembourg. He said:

    The Council of Ministers has decided to extend the duration of the use of the opportunities we have in accordance with UN and NATO requirements. The necessary political instructions have been issued in connection with the Incirlik Air Base. The General Staff will carry out the necessary technical work. The matter was solved three or four days ago.

    [05] RPP deputy leader criticizes President Bush remarks on the Armenian genocide

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (25.04.05) reported the following from Ankara: RPP [Republican Turkish Party] deputy leader Onur Oymen has assessed President Bush's statement by saying that being overjoyed by what he said will be wrong. He noted: "If you [President Bush] will express regret on matters relating to the Armenians, then we will have the right to expect a sympathetic statement relating to the more than the half a million Turks killed by the Armenians in similar incidents."

    In a written statement, Oymen said that President Bush refraining from using the word "genocide" confirms a reality. He asserted: "In view of that, it will be wrong to be overjoyed by President Bush's speech when it is assessed. We have ascertained from our records and archives that the Armenians killed 513,000 Turks in the past. Do we not have the right to expect a sympathetic statement? If you will speak about the incidents and the Armenians who lost their lives in the past, then we will have the right to expect a sympathetic statement for the more than half a million Turks who were killed by the Armenians in similar incidents. President Bush supported Turkey's initiative for the establishment of a committee of experts.

    However, he failed to criticize the Armenians for failing to open their archives. That has to be considered. Nor did President Bush make a compassionate statement or extend condolences in connection with the Turkish diplomats who were killed by the ASALA [Armenian Secret Army for the Liberation of Armenia] terrorists. It is as if these incidents did not take place. Those who were lost were our people. They were our most valuable people. The Armenian terrorists killed our diplomats after Turkey's operation in Cyprus. They probably cooperated with the Greek Cypriot terrorists to do so. Why has the world failed to react? Why have we failed to ask the foreign countries to react to what has been done? Why have we failed to give priority to that? We have a lot to say on the matter. An inclination exists to accuse Turkey and force it to defend itself. However, we should be the side to complain."

    [06] Statements by the President of Turkey´s constitutional court sparks new debate on headdress

    Istanbul NTV television (25.04.05) broadcast the following:

    Constitutional Court President Mustafa Bumin has warned the politicians with regard to the Islamic headdress issue. Stating that wearing the Islamic headdress in official offices and universities would run counter to secularism, Bumin stressed that the legal arrangements to be instituted to this end would violate the Constitution.

    Addressing a meeting marking the 43d anniversary of the Constitutional Court, where high-level state officials gathered, Bumin issued warnings in connection with the Islamic headdress. Allowing the Islamic headdress to be worn in official offices would run counter to the principle of secularism, Bumin said, adding that this is stated in the decisions of the Council of State, the Constitutional Court, and the European Court of Human Rights.

    He said: Forcing people to wear a specific kind of attire and cover their heads would run counter to the principle of secularism because it would bring about an atmosphere that would trigger clashes between the youths on the basis of religious beliefs and views, and create differences even between those who share the same religion.

    Bumin also commented on the developments pertaining to the recently proposed amendments in the law and the Constitution on the subject of the Islamic headdress.

    He added: If the statements by certain political party officials that the Islamic headdress will be allowed in educational institutions by introducing the necessary legal arrangements do not stem from an ignorance of judicial opinion on the subject, then they constitute a behavior aimed at gaining political advantage by exploiting religious feelings.

    Bumin stressed that as long as the secular provisions are in the Constitution, all legal arrangements that enable the Islamic headdress to be introduced to official offices and schools will violate the Constitution.

    [07] Mr Gul reacts to Bumin's warning on headscarves

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (25.04.05) reports from Ankara that the Turkish Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul left for Luxembourg on Monday to attend the 44th meeting of Turkey-EU Association Council.

    Mr Gul replied to questions of reporters prior to his departure at Ankara's Esenboga Airport.

    When reminded the statements of the Constitutional Court President Mustafa Bumin about the headscarf issue, Gul said: ''Understanding of basic rights and freedoms is important for the Turkish government. There cannot be different understanding of freedoms peculiar to countries other than modern and universal understandings.''

    ''Turkey will continue the democratization process and this will be provided with the will of the people. The government is determined on this issue,'' he added.

    Gul noted: ''Several bans were removed within the understanding of democracy in the past. Such problems continue today, but we will overcome these problems in the future together within the democratization process. It is not right for countries to adopt a rule of understanding of basic rights and freedoms which is peculiar to themselves. You cannot make the world accept this. Thus, Turkey's basic rights and freedoms should be similar to the ones in developed countries.''

    [08] Unemployment rate 11.5% in Turkey

    Ankara Anatolia (25.04.05) reported from Ankara that the Turkish State Institute of Statistics (SIS) said on Monday that the unemployment rate was estimated as 11.5 percent for the period between December 2004 and February 2005.

    SIS announced the results of the Household Labor Force Survey for three months from December 2004 to February 2005.

    According to the results, the total employment was estimated as 21.8 million persons, and the employment rate was estimated as 41.3 percent.

    The total unemployment was estimated as 2.6 million persons, and the unemployment rate was estimated to be 11.5 percent.

    Labor force participation rate became 46.7 percent, SIS said and announced that the unemployment rate was 13.8 percent in urban and 8.2 percent in rural areas.

    The unemployment rate was 10.3 percent in 2004.

    [09] The orchestrated campaign against President Papadopoulos, which started by Talat and Ankara, was taken over by the Turkish Cypriot press

    The orchestrated campaign against President Papadopoulos, which started by the new Turkish Cypriot leader, Mr Mehmet Ali Talat, and Ankara, has been taken over by the Turkish Cypriot press, which interprets the information in the Greek Cypriot press as it suits the Turkish sides interests. All the Turkish Cypriot newspapers (26.04.05) published statements allegedly made by President Papadopoulos, who has allegedly said that the situation in which the Greek Cypriot side is today is better than the situation in which it would be if the Annan plan was accepted.

    The papers published these statements under the following front page titles:

    HALKIN SESI: Papadopoulos does not want the Annan Plan.

    KIBRISLI: The latest confession of Tassos: The status quo is better than the Annan Plan.

    YENI DUZEN: Rauf Denktas is gone; Papadopoulos remained in his place saying the same things! The paper accuses President Papadopoulos of saying that the non-solution is a solution.

    VATAN: The Greek Cypriot leader Papadopoulos avoids the solution

    CUMHURIYET: Papadopoulos: Our situation today is better than the Annan Plan. The EU must be interested in the content of the solution.

    GUNES: Tassos Papadopoulos clearly states that they are satisfied with the point they are today. The Greek Cypriots are very satisfied!

    VOLKAN: Papadopoulos: We have said `no´ and we won.

    Three papers referred to the issue in their inside pages:

    KIBRIS: The Leader of the Greek Cypriot Administration Tassos Papadopoulos once more confessed that he does not want a solution on the basis of the Annan Plan: Our situation is better than the acceptance of the Annan Plan.

    AFRIKA: Our situation today is better than the acceptance of the Annan Plan.

    ORTAM: Our situation today is better than the acceptance of the Annan Plan.

    [10] Turkish Cypriots from UK in action in Brussels over so-called isolations

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (26.04.05) reports that the Council of Turkish Cypriot Organizations in Britain, which was established in 1983 and operates as a NGO, has prepared two reports: one on the removal of the so-called isolations on the north Cyprus and another one clarifying of the legal status of the island.

    The two reports were submitted in Brussels, to the members of the European Parliament.

    The paper reports that the Chairman of the Council, Mr Ali Ratip Dogruer, International Law expert, Ahmet Osam and committee member Halil Halebi had met in Brussels EP members, Mechtild Rothe, Jan Marinus Wiersma, Andrew Duff, Vural Oger, Cem Ozdemir and EU Commission Turkish Cypriot Community Desk head Leopold Maurer as well as Luxembourg´s Permanent Representative in the EU, ambassador Marine Schonmer.

    The Turkish Cypriot delegation members claimed that there were 250 thousand Turkish Cypriots living in the UK and as EU citizens, they demanded the removal of the so-called isolations by starting direct flights, direct trade, direct postal and telephone services and opening of the occupied sea ports to trade from the EU. They said that they expect concrete steps from the EU towards this end.

    The council members also claimed that despite the Helsinki, Maastricht and Copenhagen agreements, the legal status of the island on the international level was not clear.

    They claimed that a double standards are being applied to the Turkish Cypriots.

    Mechtild Rothe welcomed the group and urged them to make use of their legal rights.

    In his turn Maurer said: During the election period, Britain gives importance to your voice. A big injustice is being done to the Turkish Cypriots in Britain. Make up and struggle against the injustice done to you.

    Maurer said that next week he will leave for Cyprus and will hold contacts with both sides.

    [11] Two hundred fifty bags of sugar, which were to be exported illegally to Turkey, were found in occupied Kyrenia port

    Turkish Cypriot daily HALKIN SESI newspaper (26.04.05) reports that the so-called customs office of the occupation regime has seized 250 bags of 50 kg of sugar. The value of the sugar was up to four thousand new Turkish liras. The bags were inside six lorries, which were loaded with oranges. The lorries were stopped at the occupied Kyrenia port on their way for exportation to Turkey.

    [B] COMMENTARIES, EDITORIALS AND ANALYSIS

    [12] American lawyer who owns property in occupied Cyprus assesses the Orams court case arguing that the Real War Begins

    Turkish Cypriot weekly CYPRUS TODAY newspaper (23-29.04.05) publishes the following analysis by Mrs Shelley White, chairman of the New European Property Association (Eupro), under the title: Eupro chief asks: How do you say `Kangaroo court in Greek? The REAL war begins:

    English speakers know that a kangaroo court is one in which the court conducts a trial designed to appear fair yet having a pre-determined outcome. The phrase is said to have originated around 1850, to describe informal courts convened to deal with claim jumpers during the California Gold Rush. But how do you say kangaroo court in Greek?

    There would seem to be no equivalent. Otherwise, the trial judge of the South Nicosia District Court who upheld her own earlier decision against Linda and David Orams on Tuesday would have taken care to protect the viability of her ruling on their appeal. As written or, to be fair, as reported, as I cannot read Greek and await the translation of the 67-page opinion the judge has issued a political diatribe that accomplishes absolutely nothing from a legal perspective.

    It is thus a transparent effort to further fuel the Greek Cypriot propaganda machine, to the economic detriment of North Cyprus. It is a direct political challenge not only to the North, but also to the international community which has pledged to end the economic isolation of the Turkish Cypriot community. Whereas Britain, the rest of the European Union, the United Nations and the United States seek to open doors, this judge seeks to close them.

    Greek Cypriots have brayed that the Orams decision and its progeny will accomplish at least two objectives; firstly, it will enable them to enforce a Greek Cypriot court´s compensation order against a European titleholder´s non-North Cyprus assets, such as bank accounts in Yorkshire or real estate in London; and secondly, it will stop any further European investment in North Cyprus and land formerly owned by Greek Cypriots.

    To accomplish these objectives, however, the Orams decision would have to be recognized under the EU Council Regulation on Enforcement of Judgements. The failings of the judge in the Orams decision are glaringly apparent when viewed in the light of that Council Regulation and ordinary notions of due process and procedural fair play.

    The EU Council Regulation says that a judgement shall not be recognized if the defendant was not served with the document which instituted the proceedings. The kangaroo court, however, affirmed its decision against David Orams, even though he was never served with a summons and thus never had a reason, or indeed an opportunity, to appear in court.

    I had expected that the judge would recognize this problem, as her prior issue of a contempt order in the case only extended to Linda Orams, her issue of an arrest warrant was only for Linda Orams, and she has ordered only Linda Orams to appear before the Greek Cypriot court on May 11 with respect to the arrest warrant.

    No joy. I forgot about the inherent abilities of kangaroo court, which have enabled it to jump entirely over this procedural due process requirement to find David Orams as liable as his wife. By this dexterous leap, the court has avoided the embarrassing position of having to issue an order to tear down only half the Oramses´ house. But on the face of it, the decision is not enforceable in the EU against David Orams.

    The EU Council Regulation also says that a judgement shall not be recongized if such judgement is manifestly contrary to public policy in the Member State in which recognition is sought. Although I am not an English barrister but only a Yankee lawyer, I nevertheless know that the English are just as protective of the procedural rules designed to ensure fair play as their trans-Atlantic cousins. Fair play by any definition consists of adequate and timely notice, coupled with an opportunity to be heard. And that simply did not exist here for either David or Linda Orams.

    The procedural rules in force for courts in both North and south Cyprus are based upon English law. They state that a suit against a Greek Cypriot must be initiated with a summons written in Greek; a suit against a Turkish Cypriot required a summons in Turkish; and a suit against an English speaker must commence with a summons in English.

    I´ve already noted that David Orams had no summons at all. The summons served upon Linda Orams was in Greek only. She required several days to determine what the document was, much less what it required her to do, which unfairly limited the amount of time she and her counsel were given to respond to the summons. Indeed, by the time her lawyer had sorted out the paperwork, he was already too late to get into court. Given that, the summons served upon Linda Orams is void and therefore so is the order made against her by default.

    Moreover, even if both Oramses had been served timely summonses in English, Tuesday´s decision would not be recognized in European courts. The announced public policy of the EU is to support the Annan plan as the basis for resolving the Cyprus dispute. The Annan plan made full provision for settlement and compensation of land issues, centered upon a bizonal federation of a Greek Cypriot state and a Turkish Cypriot state.

    Under the Annan plan, the existing division of the island would be formalized to a degree, because only a limited percentage of the land in North Cyprus would be available for turnover to Greek Cypriots, in order to permit the Turkish Cypriots to remain a majority in their own state. This, of course, conflicts with the Greek Cypriot governmental promise to its citizens that they will all get their houses back. And so, one year ago, the Greek Cypriots voted No to the Annan plan, while the Turkish Cypriots voted Yes.

    The plaintiff in the Orams case, Meletis Apostolides, was quoted on Tuesday as saying; As long as foreigners are purchasing Greek Cypriot land there will not be a solution here as the foreigners in the North are destroying the chances of reunification. If a bizonal approach is truly intended as the basis for reunification, then monetary compensation, not return of land, is the only viable means of assuring continued existence of two component states.

    The Greek Cypriots No vote was a gamble that time would permit them to avoid those provisions of the Annan plan that were built in to assure continuity of the bizonal system, with political equality between two component states with a distinct identity and integrity. That No vote counted on the existence of limited future development in North Cyprus, so that there would be no requirement under any new Annan plan to compensate anyone for the value of any real estate improvements. (If this sounds familiar, look back to the kangaroo court´s decision to require the Oramses to tear down their house, thus to destroy something that otherwise markedly increases the property´s value. Believe me, this is astonishing in the law of property cases!).

    The Greek Cypriots did not anticipate that their No vote would be interpreted by the investing public as a green light for development of North Cyprus. Now, rather than be faced with the economic and political consequences of their own vote, the Greek Cypriots are relying upon their courts to remove the obstacles that their No vote created, by trying to force the Oramses and those who follow to destroy valuable improvements to real estate. I have no doubt that the judge in the Orams case can identify as well as I can the legal infirmities of her decision. She must know that an appellate court subject to international scrutiny will have to reverse her decision or at least carve it down so much that it is of no practical value whatsoever, even as propaganda. She also must know that if a Greek Cypriot appellate court fails to so revise or reverse her decision, EU courts will not enforce the orders against the Oramses.

    So what is the purpose of this ultimately pointless exercise? It is, and can only be, political. Greek Cypriots and their press had already judged the Oramses guilty and would have been outraged by any decision that admitted that the default order could not stand. The kangaroo court has bowed to the mob.

    Now, having turned the law on its head, the court must wait to see if others will do the same. The chances are not bright. On appeal in the Greek Cypriot courts, or in the English and EU courts if necessary, the Oramses will be supported not only by their present lawyer, Gunes Mentes, but by a formidable legal team of QCs retained in London by Eupro.

    The staged battle is over. Now the real war begins.

    /SK


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