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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Press and Other Media, 08-04-10
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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. 69/08 10.04.08
[A] NEWS ITEMS
[B] Commentaries, Editorials and Analysis
[A] NEWS ITEMS
 Talat appears hopeful in statements to Kibris, but accuses President Christofias of interfering in the internal affairs of the Turkish CypriotsTurkish Cypriot daily Kibris newspaper (10.04.08) reports that the Turkish Cypriot leader, Mehmet Ali Talat has evaluated the steps made after the opening of the Ledra Street crossing point and stated that he is hopeful.
In statements to Kibris, Mr Talat was asked the following: You have a Greek Cypriot leader with a different profile in front of you. Are we closer to peace now? Are you hopeful? He replied:
Of course we are more hopeful than in the past. This does not show that everything is going very well, everything is perfect. We have problems. The esteemed spokesman of the presidency stated it today. That is, there are initiatives directed towards the internal affairs of the Turkish Cypriot side. Or such statements. These annoy us.
Mr Talat evaluated the statements of President Christofias regarding the Turkish armed forces and argued:
I see these statements as interference in our internal affairs and an effort to create problems between our institutions. Therefore, I am very annoyed. This is a very shameful approach. No one did this until today. Have we said that Christofias has a problem with the army? Or with the police? We could have said this as well. We could say everything. He did this and I believe it was very wrong.
Asked on the tension created during the first night of the opening of the Ledra Street crossing point, Mr Talat alleged that the statements of President Christofias were not right. He added:
The real situation is open and clear. Our police, who are on duty in the area within the framework of the agreement made with the UN, interfered and stopped a night activity which was not in harmony with our laws. If this was not done, worse things could have happened. The participants in the activity could cross over to the north and create a provocation. In fact, because a different language is used in the north, it could be misunderstood. Furthermore, according to our laws, such an activity cannot take place in the north during the night and by Greek Cypriots. These are our laws.
Responding to another question he said that there are elements of the 8 July agreement in the agreement reached on 21 March between himself and President Christofias, but the latter has also time limits. However, it has a time dimension. It has a time limit also. A mixed thing came to the surface. That is, one cannot say that it is the 8 of July or is not the 8 of July. If you like call it agreement of 21 March, he added.
Mr Talat said that during the period of the Christofias presidency two more lawsuits were filed against projects prepared by the EU for the occupied part of Cyprus within the framework of the Financial Aid Regulation.
Asked to comment on the reactions to the illegal visit carried out by general Ilker Basbug, commander of the land forces of the Turkish army, to the occupied areas of Cyprus, Mr Talat said that this is not a military operation, but a peaceful visit.
 Basbug: The TRNC is now a reality. If you want a just, lasting and comprehensive solution you must accept this realityTurkish Cypriot daily Kibris newspaper (10.04.08) reports that general Ilker Basbug, commander of the land forces of the Turkish army who is carrying out an illegal visit to the occupied areas of Cyprus, met yesterday with the Turkish Cypriot leader, Mehmet Ali Talat, the speaker of the assembly, Fatma Ekenoglu and the self-styled prime minister, Ferdi Sabit Soyer.
In his statements Basbug said, inter alia, the following: The TRNC is now a reality. If you want a just, lasting and comprehensive solution you must accept this reality. General Basbug argued that such an agreement could be achieved when the two sides put forward their common will acquiring equal and sovereign rights. The Turkish general alleged the following: The treaties of guarantee and alliance must definitely be preserved, not be pierced and not be watered down.
The paper reports that in his statements during the meeting with general Basbug, Mr Talat argued that no security problem exists for the Turkish Cypriots since the 1974 Turkish invasion of Cyprus. He said that the Turkish armed forces play the most basic role in the provision of security to the Turkish Cypriots.
Meanwhile, Turkish Cypriot daily Afrika newspaper (10.04.08) refers to the statements made by Mr Soyer in the presence of general Ilker Basbug. Under the banner front-page title Do not spoil our relations with the Turkish Armed Forces, the paper writes that the above was the message sent by Mr Soyer to president Christofias.
The paper notes that it was as if Soyer took an oath in front of the general. Mr Soyer said: The dreamy behaviours of the Greek Cypriot side towards spoiling the relations of the Turkish Armed Forces with our president, our government and our people could never be accepted and this is a mistake. Mr Soyer said also that the treaties of guarantee and alliance will be there and that a solution outside this is not possible.
Turkish Cypriot daily Volkan newspaper (10.04.08) refers to general Basbugs statements under the title The TRNC is a reality and the subtitle If you want a just and lasting agreement you must accept this.
Under the title Basbug: The TRNC is now a reality, Turkish Cypriot daily Bakis newspaper (10.04.08) covers on its front page the meeting of general Basbug with the former Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktas. The paper notes that Mr Denktas alleged that efforts are being made for deceiving the people that an agreement will be reached soon. He said that this is what happened during the Annan Plan period and called on the people to remain calm.
 Afrika: The Turkish Armed Forces has taken 13 million Euros from the EU fundTurkish Cypriot daily Afrika newspaper (10.04.08), under the title The Turkish Armed Forces has taken 13 million Euros from the EU fund, refers to a report published the day before yesterday in Turkish daily Taraf newspaper.
According to Afrika, the report signed by Nadire Mater noted, inter alia, the following:
The Turkish Armed Forces (TAF) is the first of the institutions which receive a complimentary donation by the USA and the EU. It is a known reality that the TAF has benefited from the EU fund. In the list of the foundations which the EU funded recently in 2007, the budget within the scope of TAFs project for Patriotic Training of the Turkish Soldiers is seen to be 15 million and 300 thousand Euros. In this case, would it be wrong if we said that the USA and the EU administrates the TAF?.
Afrika points out that the TAF made no comment until today regarding the reports published in Taraf.
It seems that this time there is nothing to be said, adds Afrika and wonders who leaked this document to the paper in a period during which the lawsuit for the closure of the Justice and Development Party (AKP) is intensified in Turkey.
Is it the EU officials, wonders the paper and asks why the EU said nothing when the TAF was accusing civilian organizations in the Turkish Cypriot community of spying because they have taken money from the EU funds.
 The area within the walls of Nicosia was declared as Exceptional Tourism AreaTurkish Cypriot daily Kibris newspaper (10.04.08) reports that the self-styled council of ministers decided yesterday to declare the area within the walls of Nicosia as Exceptional Tourism Area. In statements after the meeting of the council, Salih Usar, minister of transports and public works, said that within the framework of the project the work has started for credits to be given to tradesmen for upgrading the shops in the area, the restoration of the area etc.
 Avci on statements by officials of the Republic of CyprusTurkish Cypriot daily Kibris newspaper (10.04.08) reports that Turgay Avci, self-styled minister of foreign affairs, has argued that according to the international agreements the Turkish Cypriots have equal rights with the Greek Cypriots on the natural resources of Cyprus. He alleged that the provocative and groundless positions of the Minister of Commerce, Industry and Tourism, Andonis Paschalides will not change this reality.
In a written statement issued by his ministry, Mr Avci commented on the statement by Mr Paschalides that the second stage of the tenders for searching for oil in the territorial waters of Cyprus will begin. He alleged that this statement of Mr Paschalides shows that the intransigent policy of the Greek Cypriot side which ignores the legitimate rights of the Turkish Cypriot people continues unchanged.
Mr Avci referred also to statements of the Government Spokesman, Stephanos Stephanou on the same issue and claimed that saying that this issue is not related to the Cyprus problem is tantamount to deceiving the international community.
 The Keryneia District Office was opened yesterday in the presence of the ambassador of TurkeyTurkish Cypriot daily Kibris newspaper (10.04.08) reports that the new building of the Keryneia District Office was opened yesterday during a ceremony in the presence of the self-styled prime minister Ferdi Sabit Soyer, the self-styled minister of internal affairs, Ozkan Murat, the minister of foreign affairs, Turgay Avci, the ambassador of Turkey, Turkekul Kurtekin and other officials. The building was constructed in cooperation with Turkey and its cost has been 800 thousand new Turkish liras. The building has three storeys and it is built on a covered area of 902 square meters.
Meanwhile, Turkish Cypriot daily Halkin Sesi newspaper (10.04.08) reports that in his statements Kurtekin stressed the cooperation between Turkey and the TRNC and noted that the building was a new product unifying the work of the Turkish Cypriots with the contributions of the people from Anatolia.
 The illegal American University of Keryneia (GAU) has signed a protocol for cooperation with seven universities from AzerbaijanTurkish Cypriot daily Halkin Sesi newspaper (10.04.08) reports that the illegal American university of Keryneia (GAU) has signed a protocol for cooperation with seven universities from Azerbaijan. According to a statement issued by the GAU, the protocol was signed during a visit of a delegation by the GAU to Azerbaijan between 31 March and 4 April.
The protocol provides for exchange of students and academic staff, carrying out joint scientific researches and organizing joint seminars. Within this framework a delegation from Azeri universities is expected to participate in the Spring 2008 conferences and seminars of the GAU.
 Turkish Foreign Minister Babacan calls for support from the Pacific island countries for Turkeys non-permanent membership to UNSCAnkara Anatolia news agency (09.04.08) reports the following from Istanbul:
Turkish Foreign Minister Ali Babacan wanted Pacific island countries to support Turkey's candidacy for non-permanent membership to UN Security Council in 2009-2010 period.
Turkey-Pacific Islands Foreign Ministers' meeting has started in Istanbul on Wednesday. Speaking in the opening of the meeting, Babacan said they convened to strengthen the cooperation between Turkey and Pacific islands countries. He defined the real aim of Turkish foreign policy as "peace and stability in its region and the world".
Babacan also said that Turkey committed to reach UN's 2015 millennium development goal.
Regarding Turkey's relations with Pacific countries, Babacan said, "we have produced policies special to each of the Pacific countries."
"Our priority is to establish legal infrastructure while developing bilateral relations with Pacific countries. Also Turkey will exert efforts to increase cooperation with regional institutions of Pacific countries," Babacan said.
Babacan added that Turkey has become an attractive country for foreign investors with the economic stability it caught.
Babacan said that annual growth rate of Pacific countries is 4-5 percent which is a pleasing figure.
Babacan said that Turkey set up a fund worth of 15 million USD last year to use in projects which will be prepared for improvement of underdeveloped and small island countries.
"Five million USD of this fund was reserved especially for Pacific island countries," he said.
 Turkish President Gul received the Secretary-General of the Gulf Cooperation CouncilAnkara Anatolia news agency (09.04.08) reports the following from Istanbul:
Turkish President Abdullah Gul met the secretary general of the Gulf Cooperation Council on Wednesday.
The meeting between Gul and secretary general Abdurrahman bin Hamad Al-Attiyah took place behind closed doors at the Conrad Hotel in the Turkish metropolis of Istanbul.
The Cooperation Council for the Arab States of the Gulf, also known as the Gulf Cooperation Council, is a trade bloc involving the six Arab states of the Persian Gulf to formulate similar regulations in various fields such as economy, finance, trade and tourism, foster scientific and technical process, set up joint ventures, encourage cooperation and strengthen ties.
Created on May 25th, 1981, the Council comprises the Persian Gulf states of Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.
A Gulf Cooperation Council common market was launched on January 1st, 2008.
 Barroso says that two more chapters will open for Turkey during Slovenias EU presidencyAnkara Anatolia news agency (08.04.08) reports the following from Brussels:
European Union Chief Jose Manuel Barroso said Tuesday the EU was surprised and concerned by the lawsuit filed to shut down Turkey's ruling Justice and Development (AK) Party.
Prior to his visit to Turkey on Thursday, European Commission president told reporters that EU hopes the Constitutional Court would make its decision within democracy and the rule of law, adding that they expect respect to EU principles and the Venice criteria.
Barroso said EU would show the same reaction to any such cases in a European country, stating that they want to work with Turkey and they support reforms in Turkey.
Barroso said he was not going to Turkey to "teach lessons", stating that he would review common responsibilities regarding Turkey's negotiation process and convey European Commission's support to carry forward relations between Turkey and EU.
He said two more chapters will open during Slovenia's EU presidency and added that EU expects Turkey to continue reforms on freedom of expression, religious freedoms, cultural rights, civil control over political parties and the military.
Asked about concerns over secularism, Barroso said they were against theocracy.
Secularism can not be imposed as if it was a religion and secularism can not replace religion, Barroso said.
[B] Commentaries, Editorials and Analysis
 From the Turkish Press of 09 April 2008Barroso-Rehn visit to Turkey: A report entitled "Clear messages from the EU" in Milliyet quotes Jose Manuel Barroso, President of the European Commission, as saying that the EU has no intention of being involved in political disputes in Turkey. Interviewed by a group of Turkish journalists ahead of his visit to Turkey Barroso said that the court request filed for the closure of the AKP is regarded as an unusual and bizarre case in Europe. He noted: "There should not be a perception that the EU Commission supports a specific political party. We are giving support to Turkey." Barroso also underscored that the EU supports the reform process in Turkey.
An unattributed editorial entitled "A mission that Mr. Barroso must undertake" in Milliyet says that the upcoming visit to be paid by Barroso and Olli Rehn, EU Commissioner for Enlargement will ameliorate relations between Turkey and the EU which have remained strained for a long time. Noting that the EU is right in opposing closure of political parties in Turkey, it says: "But, it should not have the right to disregard other problems in the field of democracy and the rule of law."
In an article entitled "Ministry of Foreign Affairs is concerned that the critical visit may be overshadowed," Milliyet columnist Semih Idiz says that Turkish diplomats are concerned that Barroso's visit may be overshadowed by the closure case instituted against the AKP. He quotes the same diplomatic sources as saying that Barroso's visit is actually aimed at expressing support for Turkey's admission to the EU and urging the Turkish Government to finish its "homework" as soon as possible.
In an article entitled "Waiting for Barroso," Radikal columnist Murat Yetkin says that Barroso will give the message that Turkey has the same rights as the other countries which were candidates for EU membership and should be admitted as a new member when it fulfills conditions for accession. He notes that Barroso will tell Turkish officials that the Commission backs Turkey's membership, but it would not happen before Turkey fulfills its obligations. He comments: "Nobody would open the doors to Turkey in order to save the AKP in the name of democracy unless Turkey makes real progress on its path leading to the EU and fulfills conditions for membership to the latter's satisfaction. It will be an interesting visit."
In an article entitled "Let's listen to What Rehn and Barroso will say," Turkish Daily News columnist Mehmet Ali Birand says: "This visit will either revive the Turkey-EU relations that have been off the agenda for a while or announce the approaching burial of the whole project."
In an article entitled "Barroso and Rehn head for Ankara", Today's Zaman columnist Amanda Akcakoca advises EU officials Jose Manuel Barroso and Olli Rehn to "refrain from excessively criticizing the judicial system" during their forthcoming visit to Turkey and to encourage the judiciary instead to "adhere to European values and principles and the rule of law."