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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Press and Other Media, 06-09-19

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.180/06 19.09.06

[A] NEWS ITEMS

  • [01] Mr Talat is promoting the TRNC through the Turkic Societies Congress in Turkey
  • [02] CTP and the newly-founded party started consultations
  • [03] Avci explains the views of his party on various issues; Supports the accession of the breakaway regime into the EU
  • [04] UBP and DP boycotted the self-styled Assemblys deliberations
  • [05] Protest against Turkeys involvement in politics in the occupied part of Cyprus
  • [06] The Chairman of the Supreme Court admits that the occupied part of Cyprus is attractive for many foreign criminals
  • [07] Erdil Nami is in Brussels
  • [08] National Security Council opposes publication of Ottoman Lands and Surveys archives
  • [09] The deputy leader of the Felicity Party says the U.S. is behind escalation of terrorist activities in Southeastern Turkey
  • [10] Turkey is fined with only five million dollars by FIA for Talat giving the cup to the winner of the Istanbul Grand Prix as President of State
  • [B] COMMENTARIES, EDITORIALS AND ANALYSIS

  • [11] Extracts from articles by journalist Ali Cansu during his visit to the United States

  • [A] NEWS ITEMS

    [01] Mr Talat is promoting the TRNC through the Turkic Societies Congress in Turkey

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (18.09.06) reports the following from Kemer, Turkey:

    While the world and the international community is changing their vision about Turkish Cypriots, first of all the Turkic world should view the TRNC with a stronger stance and strengthen its cooperation, TRNC President Mehmet Ali Talat has said.

    Talat delivered the opening speech at the 10th Turkic Societies Friendship, Brotherhood and Cooperation Congress which began in Kemer district of the southern city of Antalya. Talat underscored the need for the Turkic World to take a common stance in solidarity.

    Speaking on behalf of Turkish Cypriots, President Talat said they knew that the Turkic States' support was with them, but he emphasized the need for this support to be actualized in reality.

    Talat said that although the international community and institutions understood them better now especially after the twin referenda (on Annan plan), much hadn't been done yet to remove the isolations towards TRNC.

    Talat, after referring to Turkey's unconditional support, thanked the other Turkic states like Azerbaijan and Kyrgyzstan for their support. He expressed their expectations about the widening and strengthening of the support among the Turkic States.

    He referred to the status quo in Cyprus and the Cypriot administration's attitude towards isolating TRNC with the help of EU and by doing so, how they hoped to prevent TRNC from integrating to the rest of the world. Talat reminded the audience that the EU Foreign Ministers have agreed that the isolation towards TRNC was meaningless and should be removed.

    Talat concluded his speech by stating that TRNC was a secular democracy which didn't want anything from other countries other than their natural right to integrate with the rest of the world.

    On the same issue, illegal Bayrak television broadcast that Mr Talat met with the Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan and the Azeri President Ilham Aliyev who are also in Antalya for the 10th Turkic-speaking States and Communities Friendship, Brotherhood and Cooperation Congress which got underway in Antalya this morning.

    The Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus was represented at the Congress by President Mehmet Ali Talat together with the Minister of National Education and Culture Canan Oztoprak.

    Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the President of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus Mehmet Ali Talat and the Azeri President Ilham Aliyev delivered speeches at the opening session of the Congress respectively.

    In his address to the Congress, Turkish Prime Minister Erdogan said it is a national cause for his country to get the unjust isolation of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus lifted.

    On his part, President Talat called on the Turkic-world to strengthen its support to the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus.

    The President explained that the United Nations Secretary-General had called for the lifting of the international isolation of the Turkish Cypriot people after the 2004 referendum and pointed out that the West changed its approach towards the Turkish Cypriot people.

    He said that the Turkish Cypriot people wanted to end the `abnormal` situation created with the stealing of the `Republic of Cyprus` title by the Greek Cypriot side.

    Underlining that the Turkish Cypriot people wanted to unite with the rest of the world and to have a democratic and secular state, he stated that his people needed further support from the Turkic-world to achieve this target.

    Nearly 600 leaders and representatives from 9 countries, 6 federal states, 2 sovereign republics and 11 communities are attending the Congress which will end on Wednesday with the issuing of a final communiqué.

    The Turkic-speaking States and Communities Friendship, Brotherhood and Cooperation Congress have been held since 1993 with the aim of improving cooperation among Turkish-speaking states and communities.

    (Tr. Note: Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus is the subordinate regime the Turkish Republic has set up in occupied Cyprus and which it maintains with 40,000 fully equipped Turkish troops)

    [02] CTP and the newly-founded party started consultations

    Illegal Bayrak television (18.09.06) broadcast the following:

    Delegations from the Republican Turkish Party-United Forces and the newly formed Freedom and Reform Party will meet tomorrow morning to discuss ways of forming a new alliance.

    The agreement on this was reached during a visit by the Freedom and Reform Party to the Republican Turkish Party-United Forces whose leader Prime Minister Ferdi Sabit Soyer was tasked to form a new government.

    Tomorrows meeting will take place at the CTP-BG headquarters in (occupied) Lefkosia but Mr Soyer will not attend the meeting because of his busy program.

    A delegation from the Freedom and Reform Party led by the party leader Turgay Avci paid a return visit to the Republican Turkish Party-United Forces today.

    Speaking after the one-hour long meeting, the CTP-BG Leader Ferdi Sabit Soyer pointed out that the Republics Assembly held its first meeting today at the end of the summer holiday.

    Explaining that officials from the two parties came together to search ways of setting up a new coalition in parallel to the works of the Assembly, he announced that delegations from the two parties will meet tomorrow morning with the aim of forming a new alliance.

    He said that the two parties decided to start work immediately to prevent any chaos in the country at a time when there are a lot of important economic and social problems especially the Cyprus issue - waiting to be solved.

    The Leader of the Freedom and Reform Party Turgay Avci, for his part, said that the two parties agreed to meet again tomorrow morning to start work on ways of forming a new alliance.

    He said that committees made up of members of the two parties will start work with the aim of forming a new coalition that will work collectively to find solutions to the peoples problems.

    Mr Avci expressed the hope that discussions between the two parties will yield to positive results.

    Asked the reason behind his partys unexpected visit to the CTP-BG, he said that the date of his partys visit which was scheduled to take place tomorrow - was changed in line with a decision taken at a meeting of the partys founding members.

    [03] Avci explains the views of his party on various issues; Supports the accession of the breakaway regime into the EU

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (19.09.06) reports that Turgay Avci, leader of the newly established Freedom and Reform Party (Free Party) briefed the press on his partys policies regarding the internal issues and the Cyprus problem.

    Mr Avci stated that committees will be formed today which will work on the establishment of the new government between his party and the Republican Turkish Party United Forces (CTP-BG). He noted that as chairman of the party, he will undertake the duty of a minister.

    Mr Avci said that they resigned from their parties, because they realized that they could offer nothing to the Turkish Cypriots with political actions under the leadership of antidemocratic party chairmen who cannot understand the future of the Turkish Cypriots and will not lead the Turkish Cypriots into a bright future. He said that they established the new party because they understood the politics and the communal change in northern Cyprus and they aim at creating a free community and free individuals instead of a country and a community closed in themselves.

    Referring to the Cyprus problem, Mr Avci said that they support an overall solution under the UN umbrella which will be based on the political and economic equality between the TRNC and south Cyprus and will include the bi-zonality and the guarantees of Turkey.

    He noted that the Free Party supports the accession of the TRNC (breakaway regime in the occupied areas of the Republic of Cyprus) into the European Union and argued that the Greek Cypriot side does not represent the Turkish Cypriot people and the TRNC territory in the EU.

    Mr Avci said that his party believes in the necessity of the continuation of sincere, constant and strong ties with Turkey for the security, economic development and political existence of the Turkish Cypriot people.

    (I/Ts.)

    [04] UBP and DP boycotted the self-styled Assemblys deliberations

    Illegal Bayrak television (18.09.06) broadcast the following:

    The TRNC Parliaments General Assembly resumed its works today at the end of the summer holiday. Todays session was boycotted by the main opposition National Unity Party and the Democrat Party. The two parties also announced that they will continue to boycott the meetings of the Assembly.

    During todays session, presentations were submitted and the assembly was informed on the resignations of Turgay Avci, Erdogan Sanlidag and Mustafa Gokmen from their parties and the setting up of the Freedom and Reform Party by the three deputies.

    The next meeting of the general assembly will be held on Monday, the 25th of September.

    Currently, the Republican Turkish Party-United Forces has 25 seats, the National Unity Party 13, the Democratic Party 6, the Freedom and Reform Party 3, the Peace and Democracy Movement 1 in the 50-seat TRNC Parliament. There are also two independent deputies within the Assembly.

    Todays session of Parliament was boycotted by the National Unity Party and the Democratic Party. The boycott was in reaction to the latest political developments, which the two parties say, stained the countrys democracy.

    Meanwhile, the UBP leader Huseyin Ozgurgun and the DP General Secretary Ertugrul Hasipoglu explained the reasons behind their boycott of the parliament at separate press conferences.

    The two also announced that their parties will continue to boycott the works of the Assembly until a new government reflecting the will of the people is formed.

    [05] Protest against Turkey s involvement in politics in the occupied part of Cyprus

    Turkish Cypriot daily YEN0 DÜZEN newspaper (19.09.06) reports that placards were placed yesterday in the occupied part of Nicosia signed by The Ants .

    The placards, which were confiscated by the police, wrote: Tayyip cannot administrate the TRNC, Mosques cannot be turned into barracks and minarets into bayonets in the TRNC, This territory is sacred, it cannot be given away, the country is sacred, it cannot be sold and People with honour die one day, traitors die a thousand days.

    The paper writes that in the past announcements supporting the Democratic Party and Serdar Denktas had been issued with the signature of the Ants.

    (I/Ts.)

    [06] The Chairman of the Supreme Court admits that the occupied part of Cyprus is attractive for many foreign criminals

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (19.09.06) reports that in his speech yesterday in the occupied part of Nicosia on the occasion of the beginning of the new judicial year, Metin Hakki, chairman of the Supreme Court, said that because of the fact that the laws of the breakaway regime are not updated, many actions which should be regarded as crimes are not considered criminal actions.

    He said: Many actions, which should be considered crimes, do not constitute a crime today in the TRNC. The TRNC is giving to the outside world the picture of being attractive from the point of view of being the residence for many foreign criminals.

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRISLI newspaper (19.09.06) reports that in his speech, Mr Hakki wondered where the 50 million sterling pounds of the depositors which had been lost in the banks have gone. The paper writes that as it was understood, Hakki was referring to the bankrupted Kredi Bank of Salih Boyaci, who is in prison. Mr Hakki demanded the launching of the procedure for the collection of the money lost in the banks.

    Invoking political observers, the paper writes that new lawsuits should be expected on the issue within the coming days and that this could be turned into a political settling of accounts between Prime Minister Erdogan and the Denktas family. The observers argue that there are similarities between this issue and the Uzan issue, notes KIBRISLI.

    Turkish Cypriot daily AFR0KA newspaper (19.09.06) reports that addressing the opening ceremony of the new judicial year , the attorney general , Akin Sait said that prostitution is conducted with the permission of the state at the night clubs in the occupied areas of the island. He noted that they receive complaints by foreign ambassadors that the women in the nightclubs are forced to do things they do not wish.

    Turkish Cypriot daily HALKIN SES0 newspaper (19.09.06), under the title The TRNC is attractive for foreign criminals, refers to the statements made at the same ceremony and notes that the chairman of the so-called Bar Union, Mustafa Inan argued that the possibility of solving the problems in the field of law are very low unless reform is conducted.

    Turkish Cypriot daily VATAN newspaper (19.09.06) reports that Mr Inan said that the property issue is an important deadlock for the Turkish Cypriots and referring to the decision of the British High Court on the Orams case he argued that it is very important for the Turkish Cypriots from the point of view of drawing attention to the fact that the property problem could not be solved before a solution to the political problem between the two peoples in Cyprus is reached and that the Greek Cypriot courts cannot issue a decision on the territory in the Turkish side. This decision is a great success of the Turkish side, he said.

    VATAN reports also that addressing the same ceremony, Mrs Tulay Tugcu, chairman of Turkeys Constitutional Court said that the Turkish Cypriots have the right to live for ever independently on this land. She noted that they always support the Turkish Cypriot people in this procedure and that the TRNC is not alone .

    Turkish Cypriot daily YEN0 DÜZEN newspaper (19.09.06), under the title Island of crime , refers to the statements during the opening of the judicial year which it describes important .

    (I/Ts.)

    [07] Erdil Nami is in Brussels

    Illegal Bayrak television (18.09.06) broadcast the following:

    The President of the Cyprus Turkish Chamber of Commerce Erdil Nami has gone to Brussels as guest of the European Parliaments High Level Contact Group for the Turkish Cypriot Community. Mr Nami will attend tomorrows meeting of the High Level Contact Group.

    Before leaving the Republic, Mr Nami said that he will draw the attention of the Group to the fact that the European Union failed to implement its earlier decisions envisaging the lifting of economic embargoes and isolations on the Turkish Cypriot People.

    He noted that he will also express the Chambers support to Turkeys Cyprus Action Plan calling for the simultaneous lifting of all restrictions on the two sides of the island.

    [08] National Security Council opposes publication of Ottoman Lands and Surveys archives

    Turkish daily HURRIYET newspaper (19/09/06) reports that the Turkish Security Council in a secret letter sent to the Lands and Surveys General Directorate expressed its opposition to a project aiming at the publishing in Internet page and in modern Turkish the Ottoman Lands and Surveys Archives and Title Deeds, because this will be against the countrys vested interests.

    The Head of the Mobilization and War Preparations Department of the National Security Council (NSC) Brigadier General Tayyar Elmas , in his letter warned that this information could be exploited ethnically and politically as material for their unfounded genocide and Ottoman Foundation claims.

    The paper reports that the General Directorate of the Lands and Surveys of the Ministry of Works and Housing had sent letters dated 17/08/2005 to various government offices among them to the National Security Council asking their views about the project. In its secret letter dated 24/8/2005 the NSC demanded that the title deeds archives should not be made public taking in to consideration the present state of conditions that Turkey is in.

    HURRIYET reports that the deputy director of the Lands and Surveys Department Zeki Adli, upon receiving the NSC reply got angry and scorned his deputy Nihat Sahin, who sent the letter and asked for the NSCs views. Mr Adli ignored the letter and ordered the work to continue.

    (MHY)

    [09] The deputy leader of the Felicity Party says the U.S. is behind escalation of terrorist activities in Southeastern Turkey

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (18.09.06) reported the following from Diyarbakir: "Turkish parliament may make a decision to hold an early election during its extraordinary meeting," Sevket Kazan, deputy leader of Felicity Party (SP), has said.

    Holding a press conference in SP's office in southeastern city of Diyarbakir, Kazan asserted that external powers coveted the (southeastern) region of the country because it was an important region where several civilizations were born.

    Kazan said that there has been escalation in terrorist activities in the region recently, claiming that the USA was behind them.

    "There are problems in the country. An early election may be held to end them. The parliament will convene for an extraordinary session on September 19th.

    It may make a decision to hold an early election. If such a decision is made, it will be a great opportunity for Turkish nation," Kazan stated.

    [10] Turkey is fined with only five million dollars by FIA for Talat giving the cup to the winner of the Istanbul Grand Prix as President of State

    Under the title We got off lightly, Turkish daily HURRIYET newspaper (19.09.06, internet version) reports that the International Automobile Federation (FIA) decided today to punish Turkey with the fine of five million US dollars for the protocol scandal during the Istanbul Grand Prix when the Turkish Cypriot leader, Mr Mehmet Ali Talat, gave the cup to the winner of the race and the organizers presented him as President of the TRNC, the breakaway regime in the occupied areas of the Republic of Cyprus. The paper notes that Turkey has not been taken out from the F1 calendar.

    (I/Ts.)


    [B] COMMENTARIES, EDITORIALS AND ANALYSIS

    [11] Extracts from articles by journalist Ali Cansu during his visit to the United States

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (15.09.06) publishes the first of an unspecified number of articles by Turkish Cypriot journalist Ali Cansu on Cyprus during his visit to the United States:

    Morton Abramowitz, former US assistant secretary of state and former US ambassador to Turkey, has stated that it was wrong to enable the membership of the Greek Cypriot sector in the EU prior to the solution of the Cyprus issue.

    We went to the Centre for Strategic and International Affairs (CSIS) on the first day of our stay in Washington DC within the framework of the 15-day program entitled "US Foreign Policy and the Media" that was developed for Turkish Cypriot and Greek Cypriot journalists. Speaking during the conference held at the CSIS, Morton Abramowitz, former US assistant secretary of state and former US ambassador to Turkey, stressed that the EU rejected the membership of Serbia, but it approved the membership of the Greek Cypriots by giving in to Greece's blackmail.

    Abramowitz said: "The policies pursued by the United States are in favour of Turkey's membership in the EU. The EU is using the Cyprus problem as a pretext for delaying Turkey's membership in the union."

    Explaining that the EU constantly places the Cyprus issue as an obstacle before Turkey, Abramowitz said: "The Greek Cypriots will do whatever they can for detaining Turkey's EU membership. Turkey, on the other hand, will continue to grow. We want to see that Turkey has joined the EU. Given that the EU members do not want to focus on certain issues, they continue to use Cyprus as a pretext and to place it as an obstacle before Turkey."

    Also reporting that many conservatives in the United States do not want Turkey to join the EU, Abramowitz continued as follows:

    "In the past Turkey's membership in the EU would have served as a bridge. Currently it is evident that if Turkey enters the EU, it will constitute a threat to the Union. Turkey will become a 'super power' in the region. And the role that it will play in the region will gradually grow. If Turkey wants to access the Union, it is obliged to comply with the Union's views and criteria. We do not know when Turkey will comply with these criteria. Despite the fact that the EU does not display a clear stand with regard to this issue, similar to Britain and the United States, it supports Turkey's membership in the EU.

    "The EU is concerned about Turkey's size and population as well as about Turkey's free circulation and this is always becoming a problem. If Turkey joins the EU, it will have the highest population among the EU members. The Islamist Turks are very hopeful about the EU's liberal laws.

    "Austria does not want Turkey in the EU. However Turkey's economy is growing every passing day. This is an important change. The limited membership that Austria recommends for Turkey is accepted in the Union. As the negotiations get stuck in the mud, the idea of a limited membership will be taken more seriously. It is possible to hold talks on a special agreement or customs union with Turkey without membership."

    Explaining that it is possible to feel the existence of a [negative] reaction in the US Department of State against France and Austria which oppose Turkey's membership, Morton Abramowitz also stated that the United States will "argue" with certain EU members with regard to Turkey's membership.

    Subtitle: Turkey has important problems

    Noting that Turkey has important problems and that it will access the EU if it is able to resolve these problems, Abramowitz pointed out that the solution of the Cyprus issue and Turkey's membership in the EU are among the goals that the United States wants to achieve.

    Stressing that Turkey is an economic power in terms of the Middle East, Abramowitz emphasized that Turkey is an important ally for the United States, adding: "Turkey will become an important power in the region in the future. We want Turkey to become a secular country, rather than a fundamentalist country. We do not believe that it is appropriate for Turkey to enter northern Iraq. This will increase Turkey's problems."

    Subtitle: The good old days between Turkey and the United States have ended

    Also explaining that "the good old days" between the Turkish and the US Administrations have ended, Abramowitz underlined that especially the conservative sector has adopted a more negative stand with regard to Turkey in comparison with the 1990's.

    Explaining that this change mainly stems from the differences in the policies on Iraq, Iran, the Middle East, and the PKK, Abramowitz stressed that even though the United States appears to be "pleased in general" with Recep Tayyip Erdogan and the AKP (Justice and Development Party), it is not able to accept Ankara's stand with regard to entering to northern Iraq or Israel.

    Stressing that the visit that Turkish Prime Minister Erdogan will conduct in the United States after several weeks will constitute an important turning point in the relations between the two countries, Abramowitz said the following: "During the Bush-Erdogan meeting the Iranian issue will constitute the priority item on the agenda. Washington's stand with regard to the importance of 2007 in terms of domestic politics in Turkey and whether or not the US Administration will extend support to Erdogan's goal to become president may be clarified during this meeting.

    "The relations between Turkey and the United States will also constitute one of the items that will appear on the agenda during the Bush-Erdogan meeting. This means that the Cyprus issue will constitute one of the main items on the agenda."

    Subtitle: The EU made a mistake

    Reginald Dale, former journalist for the Financial Times who is currently a senior fellow in the CSIS's Europe Program also participated in the conference. Dale said: "The EU should not have accepted Cyprus' membership prior to the solution of the Cyprus issue. This was a mistake. When you accepted the membership of Cyprus, you merely gave in to Greece's blackmail. In my opinion if it were possible to write history again, Turkey and the united Cyprus should have become EU members simultaneously."

    Explaining that France opposes Turkey's EU membership, Reginald Dale stated that Turkey's EU membership will be problematic and that the negotiations have already stopped.

    On 17 September 2006 KIBRIS newspaper published the second article by journalist Ali Cansu on his visit to the United States. Following are extracts of the second article:

    Omer Taspinar, director of the Turkey Program at the US and Europe Center of the Brookings Institute, has explained that the United States was very angry with the fact that the Greek Cypriots said "no" in the referendum that was held on the Annan plan on 24 April 2004.

    Taspinar stated that given that elections will be held in Turkey next year a breakthrough is not expected in the Cyprus issue this year, adding that Turkey will not change its position on Cyprus on the eve of the elections.

    Subtitle: If the Greek Cypriots place obstacles, a crisis will erupt

    Asserting that if the Greek Cypriots intervene in Turkey's EU process, a crisis will erupt in the negotiations, Taspinar noted that under such circumstances, Ankara will stop pursuing the EU dream and it will say: "We do not have to become an EU member."

    Omer Taspinar, director of the Turkey Program at the US and Europe Centre of the Brookings Institute, explained that despite the fact that the EU is not angry with the Greek Cypriots for saying "no" in the referendum that was held in Cyprus on the Annan plan on 25 April 2004, the United States is still very angry with the Greek Cypriot Administration.

    Taspinar stated that the US Department of State wants Turkey to make concessions in Cyprus, adding that Turkey should withdraw its troops from Cyprus, it should return Maras (occupied Varosha) to the Greek Cypriots, and it should throw the ball to the side of the Greek Cypriots.

    Noting that Turkey is angry with the EU and the Greek Cypriots, Taspinar said: "The AKP (Justice and Development Party) believes that it has made many concessions in Cyprus. Denktas was opposed and Talat was supported in Cyprus. All the necessary steps were taken for ensuring that the Turkish Cypriots say yes in the referendum. Turkey is saying that it is time for the EU and the United States to make concessions. If the EU fails to make concessions with the aim of strengthening Turkey, Turkey will also avoid making concessions."

    Stressing that south Cyprus is part of the EU and that it is the United States and the United Nations that should change their stands, Taspinar reported that the United States imposes pressure on the EU in order to ensure Turkey's full membership in the union.

    Taspinar said: "Turkey did whatever it was required to do and currently the TRNC is in favour of the EU. Turkey is obliged to resolve the Cyprus issue for becoming an EU member. In my opinion, the Greek Cypriots should not have been allowed to join the EU. This was a mistake. The Greek Cypriots said 'no' in the referendum and they rejected the Annan plan. The EU, however, is not angry with the Greek Cypriot side."

    Subtitle: Turkey will not open the ports in the short run

    Taspinar stated that given that elections will be held in Turkey next year a breakthrough is not expected in the Cyprus issue this year, adding that Turkey will not change its position on Cyprus on the eve of the elections.

    Explaining that the AKP will not make any concessions regarding the Cyprus issue, Taspinar added: "There is a nationalist wing outside the AKP in Turkey. The nationalist wing does not want concessions to be made in Cyprus. And concessions will not be made. Turkey will not open its ports to the Greek Cypriots in the short run. I talked to Turkish officials last week and they told me that they will not accept to open the ports and they emphasized that they will not make any concessions regarding this issue. Turkey knows that Greek Cypriot leader Papadopoulos and the Greek Cypriots avoid holding negotiations. This is because the Greek Cypriots have already joined the EU."

    Subtitle: A crisis may erupt between the Greek Cypriots and Turkey in the EU

    Asserting that if the Greek Cypriots intervene in Turkey's EU process, a crisis will erupt in the negotiations, Taspinar noted that under such circumstances, Ankara will stop pursuing the EU dream and it will say: "We do not have to become an EU member."

    Explaining that the AKP will not change its Cyprus policy during the next 12 months unless other developments occur in the international arena, Taspinar explained that the Cyprus issue constitutes the most important problem in the negotiations with the EU and that US Department of State is exerting utmost efforts for finding a middle way to the Cyprus problem.

    Recalling that the chief of staff has changed in Turkey and that General Yasar Buyukanit has been appointed to this post, Taspinar noted that the nationalist stream in Turkey will strengthen after this change.

    Subtitle: The EU is in a crisis

    Noting that the EU is undergoing a crisis in the financial and constitutional fields, Taspinar stated that the EU does not want a crisis with Turkey in addition to the existing crises and that it therefore gives the world the impression that the negotiations continue.

    Underlining that Turkey should realize changes within itself in order to be able to access the EU and that it should amend Article 301 of the Constitution, Taspinar said: "Turkey should resolve its problems related to the freedom of thought. Furthermore, it should open a Greek Orthodox school for the Greek Orthodox. Turkey also has problems related the Cyprus issue. If Turkey takes certain steps in this regard, the Cyprus issue may become secondary."

    Stressing that if Turkey is able to influence Russia and France regarding Cyprus, a new Annan plan may appear on the agenda, Taspinar noted that if the problems related to Iran, Iraq, and the Middle East continue, the problems related to Turkey and the Cyprus issue will not occupy an important place on the agenda.

    Subtitle: Turkey is trying to resolve its personality problem

    Recalling that the relations between Turkey and the United States have become chilly due to the fact that Turkey has avoided taking the United States' side in the Iraqi issue, Taspinar emphasized that the situation in Turkey is normalizing every passing day, that just like the 1930's, leftism and rightism have disappeared, and that currently Turkey is trying to resolve its personality problems.

    Underlining that the army has two problems in Turkey and that these problems are related to political Islam and Kurdish nationalism, Taspinar stressed that political Islam and Kurdish nationalism have grown after the end of the Cold War. Taspinar continued as follows:

    "Turkey's EU membership process imposes limitations on the role of the army. There has been a decline in the role assumed by the army in Turkey during the past five years. It was difficult for the public to convince the parties in this regard. The Arabs believe that it would be better if the army had not existed in Turkey. It is difficult to talk about Turkey as a model due to the Islamism factor and the army. There is a large middle class in Turkey. The fact that the people's income is low and the fact that there are poor people lead these people toward Islam. The differences between the classes lead to cultural differences in Turkey. When people are poor, they become more conservative and they move toward Islamist parties. Parties that show more interest in the poor sectors win the elections. Given that the poor are religious, they vote for Islamist parties. This is an important factor.

    "The AKP has received a considerable amount of votes due to the fact that it is an Islamist party. The Islamist parties pursued leftist policies and they appeared as parties that are friendly toward the people. The people will continue to vote for the Islamist parties as long as a secular alternative does not exist. Coming to power urges the people to engage in corruptive acts. After coming to power, the AKP has abandoned its former policies and it has become the party of the order."

    Subtitle: The AKP will be divided

    Asserting that the AKP will divide within itself due to the fact that there are dissidents within the party, Taspinar stated that this sector opposes the fact that the AKP is turning from the people's party to the order's party.

    Explaining that the nationalist sector in Turkey reacts against the EU and the United States, Taspinar underlined that this is not an Islamist reaction.

    Pointing out that the EU membership process is clear and that there is a strong middle class in Turkey, Taspinar emphasized that it is necessary to further strengthen the middle class, adding: "There are two kinds of tendencies in Turkey. First, the politicians from Istanbul and the tigers from Anatolia. The tigers from Anatolia support Erdogan. Compared with the secular parties, the majority of those who support Turkey's EU membership support the AKP. This is very interesting. The secular parties, on the other hand, have turned into the enemies of the EU and the United States. This is because these secular parties believe that 'the United States is supporting Erdogan.' Furthermore Erdogan is still viewed as the only politician who is standing closest to the EU.

    Subtitle: Why does Erdogan support the EU?

    Noting that many people do not know why Erdogan supports the EU and certain people believe that this is a plot, Taspinar added: "Erdogan will use the EU in order to make Turkey a more Islamist country. When bringing the EU laws to the country it will limit the army's role and it will turn Turkey into an Islamist state. At a time when leftist parties in Turkey have become the enemies of the EU, the Islamists have begun to support the EU. I believe that the Islamists will become liberal and Islamist thanks to the EU. The left wing in Turkey is shrinking every passing day."

    Subtitle: Washington is trying to figure out who Turkey's friends are

    Stating that Washington is trying to figure out who Turkey's friends are, Taspinar noted that no one is able to answer who will be Turkey's friend in the region if Turkey is on strained terms with the EU and the United States and if a Kurdish state is established in northern Iraq.

    Asserting that Turkey has begun to resemble the Ottoman Empire and that this is because Turkey wants to become an influential power in the region, Taspinar explained that the Islamists in Turkey want to establish ties with the Arab countries, that they want to become a regional power rather than a pro-western country, and that they even want to enhance the relations with Iran and Russia.

    Stressing that he does not believe that the EU is Turkey's only alternative, Taspinar continued as follows:

    "Turkey's EU membership process continues. Many officers in the army are angry with the EU. As the EU rejects Turkey, the Kurdish flows in the region grow. In my opinion, it is very unwise for Erdogan to become president. If Erdogan is elected president, the relations between the government and the people will deteriorate and negative developments will occur. During Erbakan's term the army had indirectly intervened. Currently the prime minister is more powerful than the president in Turkey. Nevertheless, if Erdogan is elected president and if he is also able to manage the AKP, he will be able to veto the laws."

    Subtitle: The United States wants to see Turkey in the EU

    Emphasizing that from the United States' standpoint the Cyprus issue constitutes an obstacle before Turkey's EU membership; Taspinar explained that this is an obstacle that may block Turkey's membership.

    Stating that Turkey's EU membership is very important in terms of the Pentagon, Taspinar added that an EU member Turkey will not cause in Iraq, that it will not occupy northern Iraq, and it will pursue policies that are in line with the EU's policies. Taspinar said: "If the United States believes that the EU will not totally reject Turkey, things will certainly change. The United States will continue to pursue policies that aim at Turkey's membership in the EU as long as it continues to have hopes."


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