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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Cypriot and Turkish Media Review, 16-08-29

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 CYPRIOT AND TURKISH MEDIA REVIEW No. 163/16 27-29.08.2016

[A] TURKISH CYPRIOT / TURKISH PRESS

  • [01] Akinci discusses a "timetable" of the Cyprus talks with his negotiating team
  • [02] Akinci allegedly expects "logic and realism" by the Greek Cypriot side during the forthcoming process
  • [03] Akinci alleges that the Turkish Cypriots need Turkey's guarantees
  • [04] Turkish daily refers to an "emotional bond criterion" for the solution of the property issue in Cyprus
  • [05] Cavusoglu met with Kotzias in Crete; Statements by Cavusoglu on the Cyprus problem
  • [06] Talat evaluated the latest developments on the Cyprus problem
  • [07] Atun alleged that the "TRNC" is to be recognized with a Taiwan or Hong Kong model if no solution is found by 2016
  • [08] Eight more persons had been illegally "granted" the occupation regime's "citizenship"; Criticism by Bicakli
  • [09] The FETO organization was allegedly monitoring the telephones of Turkish Cypriot politicians and citizens
  • [10] "Diplomats" in Turkey and the occupation regime to be trained in International Diplomacy
  • [11] Elcil criticized the Quran lessons at mosques in the occupied area of Cyprus
  • [12] Berova and Avc? took steps to strengthen the "cooperation" between Turkey and the occupation regime in the fields of culture and education
  • [13] New "direct flights" from Turkey to the occupation regime; Road shows for the promotion of the occupation regime to be organized in several European cities
  • [14] PKK's attacks continue
  • [15] K?l?cdaroglu accused the AKP government of going too far in post-coup attempt state of emergency measures
  • [16] Turkey in talks with Eurosam for a missile defense system
  • [17] Russia lifted the ban on charter flights to Turkey

  • [A] TURKISH CYPRIOT / TURKISH PRESS

    [01] Akinci discusses a "timetable" of the Cyprus talks with his negotiating team

    Under the title "14 September is a crucial day", Turkish Cypriot daily Afrika newspaper (29.08.16) reports that Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci held a meeting yesterday with his negotiating team on the Cyprus problem. According to the paper, all eyes have been turned on the last meeting of the second intensified round of the negotiations to be held on 14 September and on whether a joint statement will be issued on that date.

    In a statement issued yesterday after Akinci's meeting with his negotiating team, a "timetable" for the negotiations was determined. According to the "presidency's" statement, the target is allegedly for the leaders to achieve as many convergences as possible on the four fundamental chapters by the 14th of September and holding a three party summit first in New York in September and then a five party conference with the aim of reaching a conclusion to the Cyprus problem in 2016.

    (I/Ts.)

    [02] Akinci allegedly expects "logic and realism" by the Greek Cypriot side during the forthcoming process

    Under the title "Turkey is ready for a five-party meeting in New York", Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris newspaper (28.08.16) reported that Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci has alleged that the target during the last six meetings of the intensified negotiations is "to complete the deficiencies in the four chapters and pave the way for a three party and five party summit in New York".

    In statements at illegal Tymbou airport upon his return from Istanbul, Akinci argued that "Turkey has stated at the highest level that it is ready for a five-party meeting in New York". He said: "We have six meetings ahead of us. During these six meetings, let us close the remaining points of difference on the chapters of economy, the EU, the governance and power sharing and the property. Let us clarify the issues that are not clarified. [?]"

    Akinci noted that he had held a detailed meeting in Ankara with President Erdogan and evaluated the current stage of the Cyprus problem.

    Akinci alleged that the leader of the Greek Cypriot community and his spokespersons make "exaggerated statements" many times and added that he expects "logic and realism" during the forthcoming process. "The Greek Cypriot side must approach the issues weighing what is possible and what is not possible", he claimed alleging that he acts according to the substance and the wording of the joint statement of the 11th of February [2014], having an "approach realistic and in harmony with the federal solution". He alleged:

    "There have been some exaggerate comments in the direction of that our proposals' content is the confederation and things are not so. All our proposals are in harmony with the federal structure. The UN has also established this. It is possible for us to create a reasonable framework especially if the Greek Cypriot side does not commit the mistake of asking for the impossible. Our target is to come to the point of making a common statement on 14 September. In that statement we should be able to give the green light for a three party and a five party summit in New York".

    Akinci said that on the chapters of the territory and guarantees they will continue having a "brainstorming" aiming at a result mutually accepted by both sides. Replying to a question, he argued that Britain has two military bases in Cyprus and may not be interested in the guarantees, just like Greece because the Greek Cypriot community has more population and allegedly possesses the Republic of Cyprus alone by excluding its Turkish Cypriot partners. "However, we the Turkish Cypriot people, as the community with the fewest population, experienced a lot of injustices in the past", he claimed arguing that in this sense it is logical for the Turkish Cypriots to demand guarantees and see their security in Turkey. "This should be understood by all sides. We can reach nowhere by the Greek Cypriot side seeing the issue of guarantees only from its own point of view and by the wholesale approach that 'there could be no guarantees, we do not accept them'".

    Turkish Cypriot daily Afrika newspaper (28.08.16) reported that Erdogan and Akinci had held a face-to-face behind closed doors meeting that lasted for 45 minutes. They issued no statement after this meeting.

    Turkish Cypriot daily Havadis newspaper (28.08.16) reported that in his statements after his return from Istanbul Akinci gave information as regards his meeting with Erdogan and said that "Turkey confirmed through the most competent mouth that it is ready for a five-party conference like the one in Burgenstock".

    Also, Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris Postasi newspaper (28.08.16) reported that Akinci wished for President Anastasiades not to lose this chance and not become the reason for them losing it as well.

    (I/Ts.)

    [03] Akinci alleges that the Turkish Cypriots need Turkey's guarantees

    Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris Postasi newspaper (27.08.16) reported that Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci has argued that "even though the dynamics of the EU has not totally ended, it has been reduced" and an "energy dynamics" has been created now in the area.

    In an exclusive interview with the paper's general editing director, Rasih Resat in Istanbul, Akinci referred to the telephone conversation he had with US Vice President Joe Biden after the latter's recent visit to Turkey and explained that the target in the second round of intensified negotiations on the Cyprus problem is a final five-party summit. He argued:

    "I think that the Turkish Cypriots' and Turkey's participation in the energy equation in Eastern Mediterranean depends on what will happen during these days. I think that this is important for the Greek Cypriot side as well. Especially after the approach between Turkey and Israel they could also remain outside this equation. Therefore the sides should think with a long-term perspective and should make use of the opportunity. [?] If in spite of our wish and our reasonable initiatives the Greek Cypriots say 'no' again if a referendum is held, it is not the end of the world. Of course we will continue our way. Our wish, our will, our preference is not this, but if some ones put obstacles in spite of our will, we can do nothing for this. [?]"

    Reiterating the view that this will be the last attempt of his generation for a solution in Cyprus, Akinci alleged that at the same time this will probably be the last attempt for a federal solution.

    Referring to the issue of guarantees, Akinci alleged that the Turkish Cypriots have always been fewer in number and the side that suffered and that Turkey's position is different than Britain's and Greece's approach on the guarantees. "Our people feel the need for guarantees. We see this and our people say this. And this guarantor is Turkey", he claimed.

    Replying to a question, Akinci said that during his recent telephone conversation with the American Vice president, Joe Biden reiterated that the US will contribute in the financial aspect of the solution to be reached in Cyprus.

    (I/Ts.)

    [04] Turkish daily refers to an "emotional bond criterion" for the solution of the property issue in Cyprus

    Turkish daily Milliyet newspaper (29.08.16) reports that the property issue in the negotiations for finding a solution to the Cyprus problem will be solved with the "emotional bond formula". Arguing that he accessed the content of the discussions between President Anastasiades and Turkish Cypriot leader Akinci, the paper's correspondent in the occupied area of Cyprus, Sefa Karahasan cites "diplomatic sources" and writes that the age of a Greek Cypriot in 1974 will be taken into consideration according to this "emotional bond formula" which will be used to decide whether this person could return to his/her occupied property. Karahasan reports:

    "The 'emotional bond' age of ten is being discussed at the table. The religious areas, the properties to be used for security purposes after the solution, the properties which will be vacant after the solution and the unappropriated and unused properties will not be included in the scope of emotional bond. It will be possible for all the other properties, which do not bear these characteristics to enter into the 'emotional bond category'. This will primarily be implemented for the return of the buildings and afterwards the vacant plots of land will be returned. It is estimated that after Turkey's 1974 operation, between 162.000 ? 180.000 Greek Cypriots migrated to the south and between 43.000 ? 65.000 Turkish Cypriots to the north and left behind one million 350 thousand donums [Translator's note: a land measure of about 1000 square meters] and 400 thousand donums respectively".

    According to Karahasan, common understanding has been reached on the following issues as regards the property:

    - The individual property rights have been accepted.

    - The persons who lost their property and the users will have different choices.

    - These are compensation, exchange and return of property.

    - There will be an independent property commission formed by equal number of Greek and Turkish Cypriots.

    Diplomatic sources told Karahasan that President Anastasiades asked Akinci the return of the occupied fenced off city of Varosha and the beginning of the withdrawal of troops from the very first day of the solution. The President has reportedly said that the concrete gains which the Greek Cypriot community will have from the very first day of the solution should be explained to the community, which voted "no" to the Annan Plan, in order for a "yes" vote to be possible this time. President Anastasiades has reportedly noted that the areas in which no one lives now and the areas to be returned to the Greek Cypriot side should be given from the very first day. "With the solution your Tymbou airport will open for international flights and your integration with the international community will start", he was quoted as saying.

    Akinci has reportedly said that the Turkish Cypriots will not delay the solution and assured that delaying the implementation of the solution will benefit no one. Akinci argued that the implementation of the solution should be "spread in a reasonable period of time". Akinci submitted the proposal that the leaders should be closed in a room somewhere outside Cyprus to discuss the "critical chapters" like the territory. It is alleged that President Anastasiades has not closed the door to this suggestion, but said that we should finish the job to be done in Cyprus first.

    Referring to the issue of the rotating presidency, Karahasan reports that this "has been turned into a mystery" and that an agreement on principle has been achieved, but President Anastasiades asked for the reevaluation of the rotating presidency and gave no clear answer on this issue.

    On the issue of turning the agreement into EU's primary law, the Turkish side has made a step backwards after the insistence of the Greek side, writes Karahasan noting that Akinci gave a "harsh reply" at a meeting where the EU chapter was discussed by saying that "nothing is untouchable", that "the EU is not a holy book" and that "what is the most important for me is our needs".

    Referring to the population issue, Karahasan reports that the leaders agreed on the number of the citizens before the referendum to be held on the island and added that the Greek Cypriot population will be 802 thousand and the Turkish Cypriot population 220 thousand. The Greek Cypriots have reportedly said that no more than 220 thousand Turkish Cypriots could vote in the referendum and opposed to the exercising of the right to vote by the Turkish Cypriots living abroad. Akinci replied that the number of the Turks who will vote in the referendum is 220 thousands and this number will not increase. The Government Spokesman Nikos Christodoulides has reportedly asked for the preparation of a list of the persons who will vote in the referendum.

    Karahasan argues that other issues on which agreement has been reached are the following:

    - The proportion in the federal government and the public sector will be 67% Greeks and 33% Turks.

    - The federal state will have no army. It will only have coastguard.

    - All the citizens of the united federal Cyprus will be internal citizens of the Turkish Cypriot and Greek Cypriot founding states.

    - The persons to be elected President and Vice President will be able to equally share a term of five years. Accordingly, a person could become President for 2,5 years and Vice President for another 2,5 years.

    - The term of duty in the Senate and the House of Representatives will be five years. During the first two years and five months after the solution, the president of both the Senate and the House of Representatives will come from the Greek Cypriot founding state and their vice presidents from the Turkish Cypriot founding state.

    - The number of the judges at the Federal Supreme Court will be eight, according to the agreement reached between the sides. This number might change, but the most important is that if a deadlock is experienced in the decision taking mechanism of the Federal Supreme Court, the solution will be to draw lots.

    (I/Ts.)

    [05] Cavusoglu met with Kotzias in Crete; Statements by Cavusoglu on the Cyprus problem

    Turkish daily Sabah (28.08.16) reported that Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu on Sunday thanked Greece for its support in the aftermath of the July 15 coup attempt in Turkey.

    Cavusoglu, who was in Elounda on the Greek island of Crete for an unofficial meeting with the Greek Foreign Minister Nikos Kotzias, said: "The solidarity and clear attitude that Greece showed made the Turkish people very happy.

    "Especially in Europe, no one can understand better than Greece and the Greek people the danger that Turkey went through", Cavusoglu added.

    Referring to the Cyprus negotiation talks, Cavusoglu said that the reunification of Cyprus is supported by Turkey. "We support the ongoing negotiations in Cyprus and efforts to put forward a solution. I hope that this time both sides living on the island can evaluate the opportunity they have in a good way. We will back them as Greece and Turkey", Cavusoglu said.

    Kotzias said that with his Turkish counterpart had talked about improving economic and transport ties.

    [06] Talat evaluated the latest developments on the Cyprus problem

    Turkish Cypriot daily Yeni Duzen (28.08.16) reported that the former Turkish Cypriot leader and chairman of the Republican Turkish Party (CTP), Mehmet Ali Talat, in an exclusive interview to the paper, evaluated inter, alia, the recent developments on the Cyprus problem and expressed optimism if a five-partite meeting is to take place on the solution of the Cyprus problem.

    Talat stated also the following: "It means that only the security and guarantees are left and that the rest are completed. I believe that the solution of these as well as of the map, is not difficult. However, it depends also on the conclusion of the other four matters".

    Stressing the need for the Cyprus negotiation process to yield a result by the end of 2016, Talat argued that with every day pass makes the solution much more difficult.

    Asked to comment on a possible formula to be found on the guarantee issue, Talat stated that he considers that Turkey will give a green light in an "appropriate formula" on the guarantee issue, since the statements coming from Turkey refer on the one hand on the continuation of guarantees but on the other hand no mention is made on the "treaty of guarantees".

    Referring to the natural gas resources in the island, Talat stated that he never considered the natural gas as a catalyst for the solution of the Cyprus problem. Providing as an example in the past cases where the natural gas became the reason of tension and conflict, Talat argued that in case the solution of the Cyprus problem is prolonged, the natural gas may cause damage to the process.

    (?)

    (AK)

    [07] Atun alleged that the "TRNC" is to be recognized with a Taiwan or Hong Kong model if no solution is found by 2016

    According to illegal Bayrak television (27.08.16), so-called minister of economy and energy Sunat Atun flew to Izmir in order to take part in the Izmir International Fair.

    As part of his visit, Atun visited the president of the Aegean region Chamber of Industry Ender Yorganc?oglu.

    Speaking during the visit, Atun evaluated the latest developments in Cyprus and claimed that "if the Turkish army leaves the island the Turkish Cypriot people may be forced to experience the pre 1974 events".

    Atun also alleged that the Greek Cypriot side's property demands are putting the Turkish Cypriot side in a difficult position. 'We support a bicommunal federal structure in the island but we will never accept being a minority on the island", Atun said.

    Claiming that "if a solution is not reached by 2016, the TRNC should be recognized in the international arena with a Taiwan or Hong Kong model", Atun added that they will never give up on their political rights on the island and argued that they wanted to develop trade relations with the Greek Cypriot side.

    Atun further alleged that "if an agreement is reached and the closed city of Maras [fenced off city of Varosha] is given to south Cyprus, then the sea and airports in the north of the island can be open for international flights and trade". He also argued that if the Greek Cypriot side restructures the closed city of Maras [Varosha] then this would provide an input to the "TRNC's economy".

    [08] Eight more persons had been illegally "granted" the occupation regime's "citizenship"; Criticism by Bicakli

    Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris newspaper (29.08.16) reports that the so-called council of minister has decided in its latest meeting to "grant" the "citizenship" of the occupation regime to eight more persons. The names of these were published in the "official gazette" and are the following:

    1)Mehmet Tahir Kul (born in Midyat, Turkey)

    2)Ismael Kurt (born in Kalkadere, Turkey)

    3)Amir Durdyev, (born in Lebap)

    4) Suleyman Kul (born in Beirut)

    5) Hacer Altuntas (born in Bor)

    6) Metin Koc (born in Gaziantep)

    7) Ismail Serin (born in Tarsus)

    8) Kazim Kartal (born in Fatsa, Turkey).

    On the same issue, Turkish Cypriot daily Yeni Bakis newspaper (27.08.16) under the front-page title: "Do not distribute citizenship like distributing golifa!", reported on statements by the chairman of the Turk-Sen trade union Aslan Bicakli, who accused the so-called government for the illegal distribution of the "TRNC's citizenship".

    Supporting that the granting of "citizenship" to 10,000 people or to 40,000 people in such a small "country" is not right, Bicakli argued that every person who becomes "citizen" of the "TRNC" affects the political and economic future of this "country".

    (AK)

    [09] The FETO organization was allegedly monitoring the telephones of Turkish Cypriot politicians and citizens

    Turkish Cypriot daily Volkan newspaper (29.08.16) under the front-page title: "Their telephones were tapped", reports that according to information acquired by the paper, the FETO organization in Turkey has leaked into a telecommunication company operating in the "TRNC" and has monitored telephone conversations during the period of 2009-2013.

    According to the paper, the FETO organization was monitoring the telephone conversations of the late former Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktas, of the former Turkish Cypriot leaders Mehmet Ali Talat and Dervis Eroglu, and also of other "prime ministers", "speakers of the assembly", "ministers", leaders of political parties, journalists and other "citizens".

    The paper recalls statements made by Rauf Denktas and Dervis Eroglu in 2009 and 2013 respectively who had said that their telephones were monitored.

    The paper refers also to statements made by Talat who has stated that one of his telephone conversations with the then Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan was tapped and then leaked to the press and the social media.

    (?)

    (AK)

    [10] "Diplomats" in Turkey and the occupation regime to be trained in International Diplomacy

    Turkish Cypriot daily Haberal Kibrisli newspaper (28.08.16) reported that the so-called American University of Keryneia ("GAU") in cooperation with the "Cyprus American University" ("KAU") will launch lessons for education in International Diplomacy.

    The lessons will start on September 19 and will be provided for "diplomats" in Turkey and the "TRNC" writes the paper.

    (AK)

    [11] Elcil criticized the Quran lessons at mosques in the occupied area of Cyprus

    Turkish Cypriot daily Yeni Duzen newspaper (27.08.16) reported that as it was made known, the Quran lessons which were taking place in the Hardarpasa mosque in the occupied part of Lefkosia and which caused a lot of discussions inside the public opinion in the "TRNC", even though these had been called as "summer courses", were actually being organized by the "religious affairs directorate".

    According to the paper, the so-called Turkish embassy in the occupied part of Lefkosia has also assigned "four religious teachers" for the Quran lessons.

    The paper writes that even though the "chairman" of the "religious affairs department", Talip Atalay has stated that the "summer courses" were to take place in the period between June 20- July 29, the lessons at the above mentioned mosque, are still continuing.

    The paper writes also that, people of all ages including young children were participating in the Quran lessons.

    In statements on the issue, Senel Elcil, "general secretary" of the "Turkish Cypriot Teacher's trade union" said that the reports published by Yeni Duzen newspaper during the recent days are confirmed.

    He added that the remarkable increase of such activities in the "TRNC" mortgage the future of the Turkish Cypriot community. Elcil accused also the so-called minister of education and culture for not taking measures and called him to resign.

    Pointing out that the education should take place in schools and not at mosques, Elcil said that they will continue their struggle for democracy and religious rights.

    (?)

    (AK)

    [12] Berova and Avc? took steps to strengthen the "cooperation" between Turkey and the occupation regime in the fields of culture and education

    According to illegal Bayrak television (27.08.16) the so-called ministry of the national education and culture and the Turkish Ministry for Culture and Tourism have taken a number of decisions to increase "cooperation" in the field of culture and arts between the two "countries".

    The so-called minister of national education and culture Ozdemir Berova and his accompanying delegation met with the Turkish Minister for Culture and Tourism Nabi Avc? in Ankara and reached to an "agreement" to strengthen the already existing ties between Turkey and the "TRNC"

    The Turkish Ministry for Culture and Tourism has announced that it is ready to cover whatever the "TRNC ministry" needs, while preparing for cultural events in the "TRNC".

    According to information released by the "ministry's press office", the Republic of Turkey will from now on invite "TRNC representatives" to cultural and art activities, international courses, seminars, art exhibitions, congresses, conferences, book signings, fairs and festivals that will take place in Turkey.

    Also, a special implementation will come into force allowing the books which are published in the "TRNC" to be able to be displayed at book cafes in Turkey but until that time, in order for writers not to experience any problems, the books will be "imported" to Turkey via the so-called Turkish embassy in the occupied part of Lefkosia through diplomatic cargo.

    The new procedure will allow "TRNC journalists" especially in the field of arts and culture to sell their books to bookstores in Turkey so that the Turkish people can also enjoy the books.

    The steps taken, will also allow for increased cooperation between the artists, theaters, music industry and art restoration industry of the two "countries".

    Turkey will extend an invitation to artists in the "TRNC" to take part in art and cultural events in Turkey.

    [13] New "direct flights" from Turkey to the occupation regime; Road shows for the promotion of the occupation regime to be organized in several European cities

    According to illegal Bayrak television (29.08.16) the so-called ministry of tourism and environment has launched an initiative in a bid to attract more tourists to the "TRNC".

    As a result of this initiative, the Turkish Airlines will launch direct flights to the "TRNC" from the Turkish cities of Trabzon, Konya and Eskisehir soon.

    A promotional tour is also set to take place in Iran in early October as well as road shows in several major European cities.

    The initiative was undertaken following a meeting between the so-called minister of tourism and environment Fikri Ataoglu and the Turkish Minister of Culture and Tourism Nabi Avc?.

    Speaking on the issue, the "undersecretary of the ministry of tourism and environment" Ismet Esenyel said that they were aiming to attract more tourists from the Turkish market following the launching of flights from the new destinations.

    Esenyel also announced that they will be holding a promotional tour in Tehran, Tabriz and Mashhad between 3-5 October.

    "A series of road shows will also be held in Baku, Dublin, Glasgow, and Copenhagen and in Norway. These events which will be organized with the Turkish Airlines will contribute greatly to promoting and marketing the TRNC's tourism", Esenyel said.

    He also added that new Turkish Airlines flights to the "TRNC" will be carried out through a touchdown system which will not only reduce flight times but also the cost as well.

    [14] PKK's attacks continue

    Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (28.08.16) reported that militants of the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) killed one soldier and wounded three others in a roadside bomb attack in Hakkari on August 28, one day after firing rockets at the airport in Turkey's main southeastern city of Diyarbak?r.

    The bomb attack came when the soldiers were trying to diffuse a roadside bomb seen during routine controls on the highway connecting Hakkari to Van. An operation was launched in the area after the attack against the militants.

    The rocket fire on Diyarbak?r airport sent passengers and staff scrambling for shelter. There were no casualties.

    Four rockets were fired at a police checkpoint outside the VIP lounge, and passengers and staff were taken inside the terminal building for safety, Dogan news agency said. The attack happened not long before midnight on August 27.

    Broadcaster NTV said that the rockets landed on wasteland nearby. There were no casualties and no disruption to flights, Diyarbak?r Governor Huseyin Aksoy told the news channel.

    Also yesterday, two Turkish soldiers were wounded in a PKK attack in Hakkari.

    The PKK militants attacked members of the Security Forces during an operation in the Samanl? and Cedikan regions near the Iraqi border.

    The Turkish forces responded with gunfire and carried out an artillery and tank attack on PKK targets. Seven militants were killed and two other were wounded in the response, according to security sources.

    Five village guards wounded in Siirt.

    Elsewhere, five village guards were wounded by a PKK roadside bomb in Turkey's southeastern Siirt province.

    [15] K?l?cdaroglu accused the AKP government of going too far in post-coup attempt state of emergency measures

    Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (28.08.16) reported that the leader of the main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) Kemal K?l?cdaroglu has criticized the government for "going too far" in the implementation of authorities granted by Turkey's ongoing state of emergency.

    "I remember [the military coups] of March 12 [1971], Sept. 12 [1980]. There was polarization and conflict. But not even this many people were arrested [in either coup]. Trade unions were not closed down. But now they are rapidly closing trade unions," Kilicdaroglu said while speaking to the private broadcaster CNN Turk on Saturday.

    "The rule of law is the fundamental criteria that will give you [the government] righteousness. The limits have been passed in some cases," K?l?cdaroflu added, accusing the government of opportunism in the aftermath of the coup attempt.

    K?l?cdaroglu stated further that state of emergency measures against civil servants and other individuals must not create a new group of "victims."

    "A large number of civil servants have been dismissed and they will never be able to return to their jobs. There was a similar measure taken by soldiers [after the coup] in 1980. But they later removed the word 'lifelong' from the dismissals, considering that they might have made mistakes in the dismissals," he said.

    He also criticized the pre-trial arrest of renowned Turkish writer Asl? Erdogan for "praising terrorism" and the closure of daily Ozgur Gundem over links to the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK).

    "We can never accept newspapers' lending support to terror. As a matter of principle, we are also against the silencing of any media organization. If a newspaper is to be closed, it should be through the courts," he said, recalling that Ozgur Gundem and other recently closed media outlets have been silenced through decree laws without formal court decisions.

    "Author Asl? Erdogan should not have been arrested. She just expressed her thoughts. Journalists and artists can be put on trial for crimes committed, but you will fail to explain it to the modern world if you impose pre-trial arrest on them," K?l?cdaroglu added.

    [16] Turkey in talks with Eurosam for a missile defense system

    According to Turkish daily Sabah (28.08.16-online in English), Turkey is in talks with the Italian-French consortium Eurosam to purchase the SAMP/T Aster 30, a long-range missile defense system, government sources said.

    Despite speculation about Turkey's possible purchase of a Russian S-400 missile system following the recent Russian-Turkish rapprochement, Turkey is edging toward purchasing a missile defense system produced by Eurosam.

    According to information obtained by Daily Sabah, Turkey's military procurement agency, the undersecretariat for the Defense Industry (SSM) and the National Defense Ministry have been continuing negotiations with Eurosam to purchase the SAMP/T Aster 30, which is already in use in several NATO member countries.

    (?)

    The SAMP/T Aster 30 system uses a network of sophisticated radars and sensors - including 3D phased array radar - enabling it to be highly effective against all types of air threats. The system can intercept missiles with a 600 kilometer range and it can operate in standalone mode or can be integrated in a coordinated network such as NATO missiles defense system.

    [17] Russia lifted the ban on charter flights to Turkey

    Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (29.08.16) reports that the Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev signed a decree that lifted the ban on charter air transportation between Russia and Turkey on August 28, as Russian media outlets reported.

    Russia's air communication with Turkey was closed since last November after a Turkish fighter jet shot down a Russian Su-24 bomber.

    In August, after Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan apologized for the downed Russian bomber and after talks between the leaders of Russia and Turkey, both sides made a decision to start restoring bilateral ties.

    Russia's move has been highly praised by Turkish tourism representatives, as they believed that they can recover some 15% of their losses in the Russian market after the flights begin.

    The Spokesperson of the Tour Operators Platform, Cem Polatoglu, said that the move mattered a lot, although the high tourism season is about to end, as Anadolu Agency reported on August 28.

    Saying that the number of Russian tourists visiting Turkey, which hit 4.5 million in 2014, saw a dramatic drop in the last two years due to the economic problems in Russia and then the diplomatic crisis between the two countries, he noted: "With a number of steps taken by the Turkish and Russian leaders, we have started to see the inflow in Russian arrivals, although the high season is about to end. As the charter flights have not resumed yet, the arrivals are still in low figures. Around 200,000 Russian tourists are estimated to have visited Turkey through the scheduled flights, which had already resumed? This figure may reach 700,000 after the charter flights restart," he argued, adding that the sector could recover around 15% of losses in revenue. TURKISH AFFAIRS SECTION

    http://www.pio.gov.cy

    (AK /AM)


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