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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Cypriot and Turkish Media Review, 16-03-21
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From: The Republic of Cyprus Press and Information Office Server at <http://www.pio.gov.cy/>TURKISH CYPRIOT AND TURKISH MEDIA REVIEW No. 53/16 19-21.03.2016
[A] TURKISH CYPRIOT / TURKISH PRESS
[A] TURKISH CYPRIOT / TURKISH PRESS
 Akinci described the deal between Turkey-EU as a very positive developmentTurkish Cypriot daily Yeni Duzen newspaper (20.03.16) reported that Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci, commenting on the Turkey-EU deal on the migrants achieved during the summit in Brussels, described the deal as positive and argued that the deal does not include any insulting elements contrary to the Turkish Cypriot communities' rights and interests. "On the contrary we consider the deal as very positive", Akinci said.
Issuing a written statement on the issue, Akinci said that the deal between Turkey and the EU could be described as an important step forward on the improvement of Turkey's ties with the EU. "The improvement of Turkish-EU ties will contribute positively to the peace process for the solution of the Cyprus problem. On this occasion, I would like to reiterate once again that the solution of the Cyprus problem will derive from the will and the approval of both Turkish Cypriots and Greek Cypriots. Such agreements can only contribute to the process in Cyprus", added Akinci.
Akinci stated further that together with the other obstacles that Turkey needs to overcome in order to become an EU member, a comprehensive solution to the Cyprus problem will bring Turkey-EU in a more positive point.
 Akinci: A political settlement will have benefits for both Turkish and Greek CypriotsAccording to illegal Bayrak television (online, 19.03.16), Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci has once again stressed that a solution to the Cyprus problem will be for the general benefit of everyone.
Speaking at the 2nd "Cyprus Economic Forum" on Friday organised jointly by the Creditwest Bank, the Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Commerce and the "Cyprus Turkish Banks Association", Akinci said that a political settlement reached on the island will have benefits for both Turkish Cypriots and Greek Cypriots alike.
"I believe that both communities will have a better understanding and grasp of the benefits of the economic development that will occur once a solution is reached. A settlement will relieve us of uncertainty, will allow us to see ahead and will enable us to take our place within the international community. A better economic and financial climate will attract investors to the island", he added.
Akinci also pointed out that the hydrocarbons in the region as well as the water from Turkey needed to be shared and used wisely to generate economic gains.
Noting that they are working hard on reaching a comprehensive settlement on the island by the end of this year, Akinci said that he believed that a solution is possible with the support of Turkey, Greece and the EU.
Providing information about the negotiations process, Akinci said that progress has been reached on 4 of the 6 chapters being discussed at the table. "I believe that my Greek Cypriot counterpart and I can reach a settlement. We just need to work together in order to achieve this", he added.
Akinci also stressed that the negotiations are being conducted with the intention of changing the Greek Cypriot side's no vote to a yes vote and to maintain the Turkish Cypriot side's yes vote. He added that the reports in the press that the talks were deteriorating did not reflect the truth.
"If we are unable to reach an agreement when the time comes, let everyone be assured that we will share with the public the reasons for our failure" he concluded.
 Eide: We really need to think through the economic dimensions of all aspects of the Cyprus talksAccording to illegal Bayrak television (online, 19.03.16), UN Special Adviser Espen Barth Eide said on Friday that the sky is the limit when it comes to what could happen in the context of a Cyprus settlement. He said that economic analysis suggests that the prospects of a united, federal Cyprus far exceed the expected growth pattern of continued divided communities.
In a video message to the second Cyprus Economic Summit at the Acapulco resort in occupied Keryneia, opened by Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci, Eide said there are new trade opportunities. "All Cypriots can trade with all neighbours and everyone can trade with the European Union; there are new investment opportunities; there are new opportunities for commerce and services based on the island serving a broader region ? I think generally, the sky is the limit to what could happen in the context of a settlement," he said.
"But these things do not just happen; they have to be taken care of as we move forward in the Cyprus talks themselves, which is why I keep insisting that we really need to think through the economic dimensions of all aspects of the Cyprus talks. To reap the benefits of the economic potential, Cyprus would need strong, clear institutions, clear decision-making processes and understandable rules and regulations for everybody. "
 Akinci and Kalyoncu participated in Nevruz celebrationTurkish Cypriot daily Kibrisli newspaper (21.03.16) writes that the Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci and the "prime minister" Omer Kalyoncu participated in the Nevruz celebration held in occupied Trikomo.
(TR. Note: Nevruz, literally "New Day" is the day of the vernal equinox and the Iranian New Year. It marks the beginning of spring and it is celebrated by Iranians, Turks and Kurds.)
According to the paper, Akinci and Kalyoncu reacted when during the celebration slogans were shouted in favor of Abdullah Ocalan and PKK, causing the reaction of the Turkish Cypriot leader who criticized the participants: "We all need peace and friendship in all circumstances. We witness the sufferings experienced in our neighboring countries and Turkey. Terror is the biggest enemy against peace and humanity. We should show tolerance and respect each other regardless of our religions. We should allow people to live free under their identities. [?] I would like to reiterate this message here today with my attendance at the celebrations", he stated.
However, writes the paper, social media users criticized Akinci for his statements and questioned his presence at the event in the first place.
 Bozkir: The work for the blocked EU negotiating chapters has been intensifiedTurkish Cypriot daily Yeni Duzen newspaper (21.03.16) reports that Volkan Bozkir, Turkey's EU Minister and Chief Negotiator, has said that the intensification of the chapters blocked by the Republic of Cyprus in Turkey's EU accession negotiations was decided in the agreement recently reached between the European Union and Turkey on the refugees issue and added: "Within such a picture it is possible to say that this is an agreement which includes very important elements for the EU, for Turkey, for peace, for tranquility and for EU's future". He recalled that they had opened chapter 17 in the 29 November summit and added that in April the procedure for opening chapter 33 during the Dutch EU term presidency will be launched.
In statements to Anatolia news agency during his contacts in Brussels, Bozkir said that they will start determining which refugees have illegally reached the Greek islands and as of 4 April Turkey will put into effect an exchange system by which Syrians asylum seekers could be sent to Europe.
Describing the agreement as a "historic turning point", Bozkir argued that the agreement means that the EU and Turkey have undertaken their responsibilities and thanks to this, steps to the right direction for the solution of the problem have been taken for the first time after a long time.
Bozkir said that in June the "unjust situation" as regards the visa requirement for the Turks who need to travel to the Schengen area will cease to exist, because the Turkish citizens will be able to enter into the European countries without a visa and with their biometric passports. "In the future it will be possible for them to enter even by showing the biometric identity cards which we have started giving without needing a passport", he added noting that 72 criteria should be fulfilled for this by 1 May.
 DNA test proves Istanbul suicide bomber had Daesh links; Erdogan sent condolence letters to Israeli and Iranian PresidentsAccording to Turkish daily Sabah (online, 20.03.16), DNA tests carried out after the deadly suicide bombing that killed four civilians in Istanbul's Istiklal Street on Saturday, proved that the bomber had links to the Daesh terrorist organization.
Interior Minister Efkan Ala said in a press conference on Sunday that evidence in hand shows that the suicide bomber can be identified as Mehmet Ozturk, who was born in 1992 in the southeastern province of Gaziantep.
Ala said that the suspect is believed to have ties with Daesh terror organization; however, he was not sought by police or gendarmerie units since Ozturk had no criminal records. Security officials have so far detained five suspects in connection with the attack, the Minister added.
Meanwhile, the paper reports that President Recep Tayyip Erdogan conveyed his condolences to the families of Israelis who were killed and wounded in a suicide bombing in Istanbul on Saturday in a letter addressed to his Israeli counterpart Reuven Rivlin.
"I have learned with deep sorrow that three Israeli citizens have been killed and 10 injured in yesterday's attack. The attack showed once again that the international community has to unite in the fight against terrorism which is targeting the humanity as a whole," said Erdogan in the letter.
The President further offered condolences to the families of the Israeli victims killed in the attack and wished a speedy recovery for those who were injured. The Israeli victims were part of a tour group visiting Istanbul, according to the Israeli Foreign Ministry.
On the same issue, Sabah reports that Erdogan sent also a letter to Iranian President Hassan Rouhani on Sunday to offer condolences after one Iranian citizen died in Saturday's terror attack in Istanbul. "I have been sorrowed by the fact that one Iranian lost his life and three Iranians were wounded in the terror attack in Istanbul," Erdogan said in the letter.
"This heinous attack targeting innocent civilians has once again revealed the fact that the international community has to unite to defeat terror. I would like to inform you that we are going to continue our fight against terror and Turkey is ready to cooperate with Iran against terror", the President added.
 Israel hails sincere cooperation with Turkey after Istanbul attackAccording to Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (online, 20.03.16), Israel hailed the sincere and very helpful cooperation it has received from Turkish officials in the immediate aftermath of the deadly Istanbul attack in which its three citizens have been killed and envisaged this as a way to help talks for the normalization of relations strained after the Mavi Marmara crisis of 2010.
Dore Gold, general-director of the Israeli Foreign Ministry, has arrived in Istanbul during the late afternoon and was scheduled to meet with Foreign Ministry Undersecretary Feridun Sinirlioglu and Istanbul Governor Vasip Sahin.
"The cooperation we have received from the Turkish officials was very sincere and very helpful," an Israeli diplomatic source told Hurriyet Daily News on March 20. "It was more than 100%", added the source.
The Israeli diplomat's meeting with the Istanbul Governor overwhelmingly focused on the details of the attack.
Gold's meeting with Sinirlioglu has particular significance as the two diplomats have long been crafting a deal that would reconcile bilateral relations between the two countries. They negotiated an agreement in two meetings last year in Rome and in Geneva that would let the Israeli state pay compensation to the families of the Mavi Marmara victims and to allow unrestricted Turkish humanitarian access to Gaza.
Gold and Sinirlioglu negotiated these issues for a first time at a meeting in Turkey and diplomatic sources said the aforementioned negotiations would be on the two men's agenda.
Not only the level of cooperation but the way Turkey expressed its sorrow over the killing of Israeli citizens have also been appreciated by Israeli officials. Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu has sent a letter to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, expressing his condolences to the people of Israel on behalf of the Turkish people.
 Davutoglu and Erdogan on EU dealTurkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (online, 19.03.16) reported that the number of Syrian refugees in Turkey will not increase after the long-awaited deal finally agreed upon by Turkey and the EU goes into effect, Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu has said.
Speaking to journalists on the way to Istanbul from Brussels, where Turkey and the EU reached an agreement on the proposed migrant exchange scheme in exchange for visa-free travel for Turkish citizens and the opening up of negotiations chapters, Davutoglu said the deal did not mean Turkey would get back refugees from Europe. "The number of refugees in Turkey will not increase," said Davutoglu. "We will not receive refugees from Europe. [The refugees] that go [to the EU] as of March 20, are within the context [of the deal]," he added on March 19.
Davutoglu said that Turkey had chosen to take its relations with the EU to a "new level" against the backdrop of the refugee crisis.
Davutoglu's remarks came one day after the EU and Turkey struck a deal in Brussels to return migrants to Turkey who have illegally crossed the Aegean Sea to Greece.
Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu said that Turkey would start to receive refugees from Greece in two weeks' time.
"Turkey will start to receive refugees [from Greece] two weeks from now. And in line with the deal, the EU will take the same number of refugees from Turkey the same day," Cavusoglu was quoted as saying by state-run Anadolu Agency on March 19, during a joint press conference with his Iranian counterpart, Javad Zarif.
Cavusoglu said that Turkey would not accept objections from any European country over the refugee deal, which also enables the opening of a new chapter in Turkey's accession process in exchange for it taking back refugees. "But objections from any European country aren't Turkey's concern," he said.
If Turkey fulfils its obligations until the end of April, Turkish citizens will be granted visa-free travel inside the EU as of July, according to the deal. "We will finalize the remaining 35 criteria on May 1 for visa liberalization", said Davutoglu.
On the same issue, Ankara Anatolia news agency (20.03.16) reported that Turkey is long overdue for a Schengen visa deal, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has said.
In remarks made during a live televised program on state broadcaster TRT Sunday night, Erdogan accused the European Union of being insincere in Turkey's accession process. "Actually, we are long overdue for the Schengen deal. We officially applied to be a member [of EU] in 1963, and during this process, they have always deceived us. They have never been sincere. And they are still not being sincere," Erdogan added.
 Turkey to introduce new biometric passports in line with EU visa dealAccording to Turkish daily Hurriyet (21.03.16) within the framework of the deal signed between Turkey and the EU in Brussels aiming to find a solution to the migrants issue, Turkey is obliged to make some new regulations for the lifting of visa regulations for Turks traveling to the EU's Schengen member countries, and amongst them is that all Turkish citizens holders of the Republic of Turkey's passport should renew their passports Biometric passports will include data and information on personal chips. The move comes as part of Turkey's EU accession process.
The granting of visa liberalization for Turkish citizens traveling to Schengen countries by late 2016 came after Brussels agreed to pay Turkey 3 billion euro to stem the flow of refugees into Europe and to re-energize Turkey's EU accession talks. The renewal of passports is just one of many conditions that Turkey still needs to fulfill to meet the accession criteria.
Meanwhile, referring to the practice followed by Turkey until so far on the citizens of the "Greek Cypriot administration", as the Republic of Cyprus is called who travel to Turkey, the paper writes that no change will be made. According to the paper, the holders of the Republic of Cyprus' passport were filling until so far a 30-day banderol visa, since Turkey does not recognizes the Republic of Cyprus. But, due to the fact that visa requirement will be lifted for all EU member countries and Turkey will not be taking banderol visa for the holders of the "Greek Cypriot administration", those who wish to enter and exit Turkey will have to fill a separate document. With this document, Turkey will avoid the "de facto" recognition of the Republic of Cyprus.
 Paper claims that Ukraine promised to recognize the breakaway regime in exchange for Turkey's support to take Crimea backUnder the title "Promise for the recognition of the TRNC", Turkish Cypriot daily Kibrisli newspaper (19.03.16) alleged that Ukraine has promise to recognize the breakaway regime after the support that Turkey offered for the Crimea issue, following the recent visit of the President of Ukraine Petro Porosenko to Turkey.
According to the paper, a secret agreement on the issue was made between Porosenko and the Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan during his visit to Ankara on March 9, were the "Fifth High Level Strategic Conference" between the two countries was held. During the meeting Erdogan said that he does not recognize Russia's annexation of Crimea and expressed his support towards Ukraine's sovereignty. In the framework of the various agreements which were signed between the two countries, especially on security and defense issues, a secret agreement for the recognition of the "TRNC" was made, writes the paper.
Kibrisli, citing information of a source near Erdogan, writes that Porosenko promised the official recognition of the breakaway regime in exchange for Turkey's support to Ukraine's plans to take Crimea back.
The paper also argues that in case Ukraine recognizes the breakaway regime, this will speed up the process for the solution of the Cyprus problem and will help to protect the rights of the Turkish Cypriots.
 Another "deputy" resigned from the Democratic PartyUnder the title "DP is falling apart", Turkish Cypriot daily Halkin Sesi newspaper (21.03.16) reports that Mentes Gunduz, "deputy" with the Democratic Party (DP) resigned yesterday from the party.
This is the seventh "deputy" who resigned recently from DP, following the resignation of Hasan Tacoy and Hakan Dincyurek a few days ago. These are the "deputies" who left the National Unity Party (UBP) to join DP some time ago. Only Ozdemir Berova, who also left UBP with the group at the time, is still member of DP.
The paper writes that Gunduz informed DP's leader Serdar Denktas for his resignation via a text message. Denktas accepted the resignation. Sources near Gunduz told the paper that the internal problems within the party and the loss of trust are the main reasons for his decision.
(CS) TURKISH AFFAIRS SECTION