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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Press and Other Media, 08-03-28
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From: The Republic of Cyprus Press and Information Office Server at <http://www.pio.gov.cy/>TURKISH PRESS AND OTHER MEDIA No. 61/08 28.03.08
[A] NEWS ITEMS
[A] NEWS ITEMS
 General Buyukanit continues his visit in occupied CyprusThe Turkish and Turkish Cypriot press continue today (28.03.08) to report as follows on the illegal visit of the Chief of the Turkish General Staff, General Yasar Buyukanit, to occupied Cyprus:
Kibris writes that the Chief of the Turkish General Staff, General Yasar Buyukanit, who arrived in the TRNC yesterday upon an official invitation of the self-styled president, Mehmet Ali Talat, continued his contacts in occupied Cyprus. The paper writes that General Buyukanit, who visited yesterday the occupied Mehmetcik village [Galatia], which according to Kibris showed resistance during the bi-communal conflicts in 1963-64, noted for one more time: We will be here until a just, comprehensive and equitable agreement is reached. The Turkish General stated that the Turkish Security Forces are not an invasion force in Cyprus as some people say. He said that they are here in order to safeguard the security of the Turkish Cypriot people and added that they will always stand by the Turkish Cypriot people until a fair and lasting peace is achieved on the island.
Under the title Karpass souvenir, Afrika reports in its first page that General Buyukanit, visited yesterday the Mehmetcik village and inaugurated an avenue to which his name was given. The self-styled police searched with a detector the persons who went to the area in order to participate in the ceremony. In the ceremony slogans like Cyprus is Turkish and will remain Turkish, I am proud to be called a Turk, were chanted.
Halkin Sesi reports on Buyukanits visit under the title The Cyprus events ended in 1974 and writes that the Turkish General, who visited the Mehmetcik village, met with the people who went to the Mehmetcik Municipality park to see him, yesterday. General Buyukanit, who as the paper notes was in civilian clothes, shook hands with the people who gathered at the park and thanked them for the love they show towards him.
Speaking at the inaugural ceremony at the village, the Turkish General stated: The Cyprus events did not start in 1974 as some people say. They were ended at this date. He went on and stated that the Turkish Security Forces are in the TRNC based on international agreements for the protection of the Turkish Cypriots and added: Until a just and lasting solution is found, which will include the rights and freedoms of the Turkish people living in Cyprus, the Turkish troops will always be with you. Referring to the isolation, General Buyukanit said that it is cruel and noted that Turkish Cypriots do not deserve the isolation they have been facing adding that the Turkish Cypriot people must be integrated with the rest of the world.
Vatan also reports on Buyukanits visit under the title The people of Karpass embrace Buyukanit. The paper writes that the Turkish General participated in an inaugural ceremony for an avenue in which his name was given and adds that the name of the street, which was Hurriyet (Freedom) Avenue, was changed to General Yasar Buyukanit Avenue.
Gunes reports on the same issue under the title A welcome full of love and respect to Buyukanit.
Yeni Volkan which reports on the issue under the title Mehmetcik [occupied Galatia] embraced Buyukanit, writes that the Turkish General was welcomed with great love and excitement by many people in Mehmetcik.
Todays mainland Turkish press continues to report on General Buyukanits illegal visit to Cyprus as follows:
Hurriyet reports on the issue under the front page title Buyukanits Avenue in Mehmetcik [occupied Galatia] village and writes that the name of Buyukanit was given to a main avenue in occupied Galatia village.
This is the first time something like this is happening in my life. You have deeply touched me, said Gen. Buyukanit and added: It is absolutely necessary for the isolations which the TRNC is facing to be lifted and the TRNC to be integrated with the world.
According to the paper, the residents of Mehmetcik village [occupied Galatia], a name given to the village after the peace operation in 1974, welcomed Gen. Buyukanit during his second day of his visit to occupied Cyprus holding placards with slogans TRNC is not on the table, we have won our position, We are soldiers of Mustafa Kemal, How happy to be called a Turk. Cyprus is Turkish and Turkish it will remain. There he delivered a speech.
The so-called mayor of occupied Galatia, Ahmat Beyazit Adalier, handed to Buyukanit the golden key of the city and after a decision of the so-called municipality board, the name of the main avenue of the village was changed to General Buyukanits avenue.
Under the title Talat - Buyukanits meeting, Ferai Tinc writes for Hurriyet that the illegal visit of Gen. Buyukanit in Cyprus right after the meeting of President Christofias with the Turkish Cypriot leader Mehmet Ali Talat receives a different meaning.
The visit of Gen. Buyukanit in the island at a time when the meetings of the two leaders are about to start, brought a balance to the day which has started with the works undertaken for the Ledra Streets opening.
Ledras Street was not, however, the issue this time. General Buyukanit said that the Turkish army will withdraw after a just and permanent solution. I asked yesterday what the meaning of this statement was. I learned from circles close to Talat that this statement is interpreted as a peace message. Also, General Buyukanits message that the TRNC and the officials in Turkey know how a just and lasting peace is, was evaluated as a message of confidence towards Talat.
The solution of the Cyprus problem and the withdrawal of the Turkish army or even the maintaining of the borders depend on political decisions of good will. Is it right for the Turkish army to express its views in this manner?
This is important in Cyprus. Because the Republic of Cyprus Administration, being an EU member, is promoting its view intensively in the international backstage that todays partition and the problems in the island are due to the occupation.
Milliyet newspaper reports on Gen. Buyukanits illegal visit to Cyprus under the titles The golden key to General Yasar Buyukanit from Mehmetcik village; The isolation must be lifted.
As Barkin Sik reports from occupied Karpaz Peninsula, Gen. Buyukanit criticized the isolation which is applied on the TRNC, while to his question whether there is any message to take back with him to Turkey, no massage for the time being was the answer he received.
Gen. Buyukanit visited the historic place of Famagusta, while he attended a ceremony in occupied Galatia village, which along with the occupied Kokkina village were the flag-bearers against Greek Cypriots before the peace operation in Cyprus took place, writes the paper.
The Turkish Armed Forces is in Cyprus based on international treaties, said Gen. Buyukanit and added: The Turkish Armed Forces is not a military force that invaded in North Cyprus as many are saying. It is here to maintain the security of the Turkish people who live in North Cyprus and it will continue to remain here. The Turkish army will be here with you, until a just and permanent peace is achieved, which will include the rights and freedoms for the Turkish people living in Cyprus. Some people, especially foreigners, say that the Cyprus incidents started after 1974. However, the Cyprus incidents did not start after 1974, they ended after 1974.
No Turkish Cypriot caused the incidents which started since 1960. Everyone was subject to attacks. In the situation which emerged, there is no issue for which to criticize the Turkish Cypriot people. The TRNC people gave their blood for their land. This moment, the TRNC is facing isolation. This isolation is a tyranny. The TRNC does not deserve something like this. It is absolutely necessary for the isolations which the TRNC is facing to be lifted and the TRNC to be integrated with the world and I hope that this is to happen shortly, Buyukanit said.
Buyukanits illegal visit to Cyprus is reported in Sabah newspaper under the title Now there is in Cyprus Buyukanits avenue.
 Statements by Yonluer and Izcan on the visit of General Buyukanit in CyprusTurkish Cypriot daily Kibris newspaper (28.03.08) writes that the chairman of the Politics for the People Party (HIS) Ahmet Yonluer, stated that the visit of General Buyukanit in Cyprus is welcome with great joy and added that the reactions of the Greek Cypriot side to the visit will influence negatively the new process which has started for the solution of the Cyprus problem. He went on and stated that the Turkish Security Forces are the security and the guarantee of the Turkish Cypriots.
Under the title Izcan is even worse than the Greek Cypriots, Turkish Cypriot daily Yeni Volkan newspaper (28.03.08) reports that the general-secretary of the United Cyprus Party (BKP), Izzet Izcan noted in a written statement that Turkey has violated the 1960 Treaties of Guarantee and Alliance.
Noting that Turkey exploited its right to unilateral intervention under the 1960 Treaties of Guarantee and Alliance, in order to restore the constitutional order in Cyprus, Mr. Izcan said that Turkey instead of withdrawing when the constitutional order was restored it partitioned the island.
Mr. Izcan noted: The presence of armed forces on the island can never be justified on the basis of the 1960 Treaties of Guarantee and Alliance within this framework, Turkey has violated the 1960 Guarantee and Alliance. Commenting on the statement of General Buyukanit for lasting and just solution in Cyprus, Mr. Izcan also said that the withdrawal of some troops would contribute to achieving a lasting and just solution to the Cyprus problem.
Mr. Izcan explained: Just how such a solution would be achieved is precisely explained in the UN resolutions on Cyprus.
 Jim Murphy, the Minister of State for Europe of the UK, will visit Turkey for talks on CyprusTurkish Cypriot daily Kibris newspaper (28.03.08) reports that Jim Murphy, the Minister of State for Europe of the UK, stated that Cyprus is not close to partition but close to unification. Mr. Murphy made these statements on Monday participating, together with Joan Ryan, the British Prime Ministers Special Representative to Cyprus, in a meeting organized in Wood Green, London, by Turkish Cypriots who live in the UK. Mr. Murphy stated that Britain is putting all its energy towards the solution of the Cyprus problem and added that they do not think of the failure. As he said, they do not have a plan B or a plan C.
He also stated that following the invitation extended to the Greek Cypriot leader Demetris Christofias to the UK, Mr. Talat should be invited as well. Noting that he will pay a visit to Turkey on Monday in order to have talks for the Cyprus problem, said that they are aware of their responsibilities as regards the search for a solution in Cyprus.
On her part, Mrs Ryan stated that both sides in Cyprus must show tolerance for the solution of the Cyprus problem. Referring to the election of Mr. Christofias to the post of the President, Mrs Ryan said that it brought fresh and new air this period. Noting that the same happened when Mehmet Ali Talat came to the scene after Rauf Denktas, Mrs Ryan said: According to me we must give Demetris a chance.
In addition, Turkish Milliyet newspaper (28.03.08) reporting on the same issue writes that Mr. Murphy stated that he is ready to give every kind of help possible for a solution to the problem and that the Cyprus problem is an issue which is going to dominate the agenda of the next few months.
Referring to the invitation extended to President Christofias to visit Great Britain, Mr. Murphy also stated that an invitation should be also sent to Mr. Talat, while he repeated that his country favors the unification of Cyprus, based on a bi-communal, bi-zonal solution on the island.
He also noted that Great Britain is planning to bring together Turkish Cypriot and Greek Cypriot representatives in the country, that a window of opportunity opened this year and that he is optimistic.
 50 trillion more for the drought,Under the above title Turkish Cypriot daily Yeni Duzen newspaper (28.03.08) reports in its first page that the self-styled agriculture minister, Onder Sennaroglu, stated that because of the drought, 50 trillion Turkish Lira (50 million New Turkish Lira) are needed in the occupied areas and noted that this amount is in addition to the budget sources. As he stated, they are expecting the support of Turkey on the issue and that in the coming days this issue will be clarified.
The paper also writes that the issue of the drought was taken up yesterday during a session of the self-styled assembly.
 Sabah: The neighbors will debate on economy in the TRNC for the first timeUnder the above title, Turkish daily Sabah newspaper (28.03.08) reports that the Trade Chambers of Greece, South Cyprus, North Cyprus and Turkey will come together for the first time in the Turkish side of the island for establishing economic cooperation on May 23.
 Babacan comments on AKP closure case, Cheney visit, Cyprus talksTurkish daily Milliyet newspaper (27.03.08) reports the following:
We are in The Hague at the invitation of Foreign Minister Ali Babacan. He is in the capital of the Netherlands for official talks. Erdal Safak, communist of daily Sabah, Bulent Korucu, columnist of daily Zaman, and I found an opportunity to discuss the recent developments with him during our flight. The following is a brief account of the views Babacan conveyed to us when he responded to our questions:
Lawsuit against AKP
Stressing that foreigners find it difficult to understand why a lawsuit has been filed against the AKP [Justice and Development Party], Babacan said that "the decision was wrong." Noting that "the lawsuit has not yet created a problem in international relations," he made a serious warning: "The EU might suspend its relations with Turkey" if the AKP is closed down. However, he also said that the general view abroad is that Turkey will be able to solve the problem. Babacan asserted: "That is why we will maintain our reforms program as if nothing has happened."
We recalled that an initiative on Article 301 of the Turkish Penal Code has not been made thus far regardless of the "AKP statements on reforms" and asked Babacan to explain the problem. He responded by saying that the administration has already decided to change the article and noted that the matter "concerns the timing of the initiative" that will be made to that effect. He said: "The changes will be in accordance with the political developments and at the right time."
We realized from what he said that the government does not want to be confronted with political controversies the article's amendment will create at the present time.
Recalling the promises President Gul and Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan made on the article in the past, Babacan said that the matter is related to the "realization of the changes." He noted that "actors will remain on the scene even if the rules are changed" and hinted that the application of the new version of the law might be similar to the application of the original one if the mentality remains unchanged.
We asked Babacan to comment on Vice President Dick Cheney's visit to Ankara. Stressing that Cheney did not demand anything from Turkey, he said: "He mostly explained his views on Afghanistan, Iran, and Iraq." Stressing that the visit did not create an opportunity for detailed talks on the existing problems because it was short, Babacan said that he refrained from asking for military units for Afghanistan. He said that the request was conveyed through NATO and noted that the matter will be taken up during the NATO summit in Bucharest early in April. However, Babacan hinted that Turkey will not completely ignore a NATO request on the matter by stressing that Ankara remaining indifferent toward the developments in Afghanistan, which have already started to have negative effects on Pakistan, will be difficult.
At this point, we should note that the diplomatic sources we have consulted expressed the view that Turkey's approach should not be taken to mean that "a combatant force" might be dispatched to Afghanistan.
EU a side in Cyprus
We also asked Babacan to comment on the recent developments in the Cyprus problem. He assessed Demetrios Christofias' election as the new Greek Cypriot leader as an opportunity for a solution. However, he recalled that the Cyprus problem has existed for 30 years and said: "In view of that, starting from scratch will mean loss of time." That hinted that what has been gained through the Annan Plan cannot be given up.
Stressing that Turkey prefers not to be seen in the forefront too much during the new negotiations process regardless of being one of the guarantor powers, Babacan said: "Another opportunity will be missed if the present initiatives fail. The problem has to be diagnosed if the effort that is made to find a solution fails. Of course, it is too early to discuss that. Christofias has said that he wants to work toward a solution. We shall see whether or not he does so during the process. We have to trust his statements."
Babacan asserted that the EU must follow the new process from a distance because it does not maintain an impartial approach on the Cyprus problem. He said: "It would be alright if it intervenes to move the process forward. Otherwise, we say that it must not interfere. But, I do not believe that the EU can maintain an impartial approach on the problem."
 EU plans to open new negotiation chapter with TurkeyUnder the above title, Turkish daily Today´s Zaman newspaper (28.03.08) reports the following:
The EU is planning to open a new negotiation chapter with Turkey on April 21, despite more than a year having passed since the Turkish capital sent the bloc its negotiation position paper on the subject.
Ankara sent its negotiation position paper on the chapter on education and culture back in May 2006, but the EU was unable to move to open any further chapters due to French objections, supported by Greece and Greek Cyprus.
Slovenia, the current holder of the EU's rotating presidency, has been exerting intensified efforts to hold an accession conference with candidate countries Croatia and Turkey on April 21, diplomats told Today's Zaman. "However, the new negotiation chapter could be stalled if one of the member states objects at the last minute," the same diplomats said.
Turkey began talks for accession to the EU in 2005. But since then proceedings have been slowed down by rows over the disputed island of Cyprus and human rights issues. Most analysts do not expect to see Turkey joining the wealthy bloc before 2015, at the earliest. Ankara has begun work on only four negotiation chapters out of a total of 35 and, to date, has provisionally completed just one of them. The EU also decided in 2006 to block eight chapters connected with the bloc's customs union due to Ankara's refusal to allow Greek Cypriot ships and planes to access its ports and airports.
Slovenia wants to open negotiations with Ankara on at least two more chapters before handing over the EU presidency to France on July 1. Diplomats say there has been progress on chapters on company law and intellectual property and that, if there is consensus among member states, negotiations can be opened by the end of June.
Noting the positive environment on the divided Mediterranean island of Cyprus following last week's meeting between Turkish and Greek Cypriot leaders, who decided to relaunch a new round of talks for reunification, EU diplomats have expressed hope for opening negotiations with Ankara on the chapter on energy, which was previously blocked due to Greek Cypriot objection.
 European Parliamentarians Discuss Draft Report on TurkeyAnkara Anatolia news agency (27.03.08) reports the following:
Christian Democrat MEP Ria Oomen-Ruijten said Thursday there is no judiciary in Turkey that every one can rely on.
"Turkey needs to work on this matter," Oomen-Ruijten, who is also Turkey rapporteur of the European Parliament (EP), said during a meeting at the External Relations Committee of the EP in which MEPs discussed a draft report on Turkey.
Oomen-Ruijten said Turkish parliament decided to free headscarf in universities with two-third majority but this decision cannot be implemented. "I do not know any other country like this. I am for the independence of the judiciary but there is no judiciary in Turkey that every one can rely on," she told. Oomen-Ruijten also said she is totally against the closure of the Justice and Development (AK) Party and the Democratic Society Party (DTP).
"This problem can be overcome by making rapid reforms concerning the judiciary," she told.
On the other hand, Joost Lagendijk, the co-chair of Turkey- EU Joint Parliament Committee, said judiciary considers 'wrong" the preference of majority of the nation and this is unacceptable. Lagendijk said the EU should strongly ask for a judicial reform in Turkey.
The draft report recommends Turkey to provide a large participation of NGOs in efforts to prepare a new constitution, and asks Turkey to amend the Article 301 of TCK as soon as possible.
Condemning the acts of the terrorist organization PKK, the draft asks the PKK to lay down arms without any precondition.
The draft calls on Iraqi government and the regional administration in Iraq not to "allow PKK to use its territories as a base for terrorist attacks against Turkey." On the Cyprus problem, the draft report says that a comprehensive solution should be found under the auspices of the UN.
The report does not touch on Armenian allegations regarding the incidents of 1915, and calls on the European Commission and Turkey to launch negotiations on a visa simplification agreement.
The EP is expected to vote the report in a plenary session in May.
 Turkey will donate $50 million to African countriesAnkara Anatolia news agency (27.03.08) reports the following:
Turkey has made a decision to provide a donation of 50 million USD to Africa.
Turkish International Cooperation Agency (TIKA) will distribute 50 million USD to African nations in the next five years as aid to be utilized in the fields of health, education and economic development.
Turkey provided aid worth 700 million USD to developing countries in 2006. Turkey was admitted into the African Union as an observer in 2005.