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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Cypriot and Turkish Media Review, 16-08-31

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. 165/16 31.08.2016

[A] TURKISH CYPRIOT / TURKISH PRESS

  • [01] Akinci accuses the UBP-DP "government" of being ill intended and of launching a "no campaign" against a possible solution in Cyprus
  • [02] Statements by the political parties after the briefing by Akinci; UBP-DP insists on having a "representative" in the negotiations
  • [03] Opposition parties: There is no need for a "representative" of the "government" in the Turkish Cypriot negotiating team
  • [04] Ozersay calls on Akinci to exert pressure for a summit with the participation of the guarantor countries
  • [05] Turkish Cypriot columnists commented on the conflict between Akinci and the "government"
  • [06] A fugitive army officer involved in the military coup attempt in Turkey has reportedly escaped in the free areas of the Republic of Cyprus
  • [07] More journalists detained in operation against Gulen
  • [08] "CHP can play a key role in avoiding Turkey-EU row"

  • [A] TURKISH CYPRIOT / TURKISH PRESS

    [01] Akinci accuses the UBP-DP "government" of being ill intended and of launching a "no campaign" against a possible solution in Cyprus

    Turkish Cypriot daily Havadis newspaper (31.08.16) reports that the insistence of the UBP-DP "government" of the breakaway regime in the occupied area of the Republic of Cyprus on the issue of having a "representative" in the Turkish Cypriot negotiating team has been turned into a political crisis during the meeting at which Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci briefed yesterday the political parties represented in the "parliament" on the developments in the Cyprus negotiations.

    In statements after the meeting, Akinci said that they cannot hold a healthy dialogue with the "government", which insists on having a "representative" in the negotiations, a demand which had never been submitted before during the past negotiating processes.

    "They are trying to confuse the people by causing fears which are not expressed inside [the meeting]", noted Akinci adding that the "government" has "almost launched a no campaign saying that if our representative is not there we also are not there". Pointing out that he has established that the "government" is ill intentioned, Akinci described as "extremely wrong" to exert efforts to confuse the "people", in spite of the fact that during his meetings with the parties he clarified "some wrong information coming from [Greek Cypriot] Politis newspaper".

    Noting that this was the second time within a week he briefed the parties represented in the "parliament", Akinci said that soon he may brief the parties which are not represented in the "parliament", since "the process is heading towards an important stage". He added:

    "After the five meetings until 14 September are completed, the process might continue in New York somehow. The target is of course to be able to carry the process to a five party conference after the three party meeting we will hold in New York with the UNSG and lead the procedure to referendum by achieving the solution of the issue on security and guarantees there".

    Akinci reiterated that whether this will happen depends on the developments during the forthcoming process and alleged that "if the demands of the Greek Cypriot side remain within a realistic and logical framework [?] we will be able to reach to the point of establishing a bi-zonal, bi-communal federal structure, the parameters of which are known for many years".

    Akinci said that he has not been making statements until today after the briefings of the political parties, but yesterday he felt the need to do so, because he does not want "our people to be deceived". He recalled that he had been "elected" receiving 60% of the "votes" in 2015 because of the program he had clearly explained to the "people" and added that his approach on the Cyprus problem was included in the first paragraph of this program. He noted that in that program he had stated from the very first day that he would carry out the negotiations within the framework of the 1977-79 high level agreements signed by late Rauf Denktas, the convergences between former Turkish Cypriot leader Talat and former President Christofias and the document of 11 February 2014 signed by former Turkish Cypriot leader Eroglu and approved by all the political parties of both the "government" and the "opposition".

    Explaining that he cannot take with him all the members of his negotiating team at every meeting during the current stage of the negotiations, Akinci said that during the last meeting, for example, an expert on law issues from each community was accompanying the leaders and the negotiators.

    Noting that there is still no document for which to call the "people" to vote "yes", Akinci said that he is trying to achieve this and if he does he will be able to say to the "people": "Yes, now we will be able to be included in the international law, we put an end to the uncertainty of the future generations, we get rid of the discrimination between title deeds of Turkish origin and title deeds of non-Turkish origin [?] and you will take your position in the EU as honorable member because this is not only a right of the Greek Cypriots".

    (I/Ts.)

    [02] Statements by the political parties after the briefing by Akinci; UBP-DP insists on having a "representative" in the negotiations

    Under the title "No support by the opposition to the government's insistence", Turkish Cypriot daily Havadis newspaper (31.08.16) refers to the statements made by the leaders of the four political parties represented in the "parliament" of the breakaway regime after they were briefed yesterday by the Turkish Cypriot leader on the developments as regards the Cyprus problem.

    The paper reports that Huseyin Ozgurgun, "prime minister" and leader of the National Unity Party (UBP), said they could not have a "representative" of the "government" in the negotiating team, something which means that they are outside the negotiating process. He argued that the participation of the "undersecretary of the foreign ministry" in the negotiating team will be tantamount to the "government" undertaking responsibility in the process and strengthening Turkish Cypriot leader Akinci.

    Ozgurgun alleged that the statements made by the Greek Cypriot side on the negotiations cause "serious concern" and in this sense the "people" should be briefed. "These concerns exist for a long time. A serious source of concern is what will happen especially on the issues of the property, the territory, the guarantees and the economy", he claimed and alleged that the solution of the Cyprus problem may stop the economic life in the "TRNC", turn all properties into a subject of dispute and put an end to the sales or transfers of immovable properties.

    Saying that Akinci told them that some statements made in the Greek Cypriot side are groundless, Ozgurgun argued that in spite of this some issues have not been clarified and cause concern.

    In his statements, Serdar Denktas, leader of the Democratic Party (DP) and self-styled deputy prime minister, criticized the fact that there is no "representative" of the "government" in the negotiating team and argued that not briefing the "people" at this stage is not correct. He noted that this is the first time that the "government" and a Turkish Cypriot leader have so big differences in the Cyprus problem. "It is obvious that we are representatives of two different views, the issues on which we are sensitive are different than the issues on which the president is sensitive", he said.

    Pointing out to the possible "bad consequences" after a solution to the Cyprus problem, Denktas alleged that if both the Turkish Cypriots and the Greek Cypriots vote "yes" to a solution plan in the referendum without knowing what they vote for, this could lead to conflict.

    Referring to the course of the negotiations, Denktas alleged: "We are not heading towards a structure which will satisfy us and about which we could say that 'this solution is viable'. An environment is provided in which bi-zonality, bi-communality will be abolished within ten years".

    Moreover, Mehmet Ali Talat, chairman of the Republican Turkish Party (CTP), argued that the fact that a tripartite meeting will be held in New York indicates that we are at a very important stage. Talat said that as they understood, there are not many difficulties in the negotiations and criticized the "government", which does not share this view. Talat described as "worrying" the tension observed between the "government" and Akinci and argued that this tension will weaken Akinci both internationally and in front of the Greek Cypriot side. Talat alleged that having as a point of reference news coming from the Greek Cypriot side is wrong, that the Greek Cypriot side publishes "manipulating news" and that if they act after such information, they will serve the Greek Cypriot side. "If we ask our questions based on the news of the Greek Cypriot press, we help the hidden intentions of the Greek Cypriot side", he claimed.

    Finally, Cemal Ozyigit, chairman of the Social Democracy Party (TDP), criticized the stance of the "government" against Akinci and described it as "extremely untimely and unnecessary". He noted that the minutes of the negotiations given to them by Akinci are extremely satisfactory and argued that the course of the negotiations shows that we are approaching the solution of the Cyprus problem step by step. Noting that the next five meetings between the community leaders and the process in New York will be decisive on this issue, Ozyigit said that the "people" should not worry and that Akinci sincerely and decisively works for an agreement, which will be protecting the rights and the interests of the Turkish Cypriots.

    (I/Ts.)

    [03] Opposition parties: There is no need for a "representative" of the "government" in the Turkish Cypriot negotiating team

    Under the title "There is no need", Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris newspaper (31.08.16) reports that the Turkish Cypriot opposition parties made exclusive statements to the paper on the issue of having a "representative" of the "government" in the Turkish Cypriot negotiating team.

    The paper notes that all parties said that there is no need for a "government representative" at the talks.

    The chairman of the United Cyprus Party (BKP) Izzet Izcan stated that "those who do not want a solution have no place at the negotiation table". Izcan said that Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci held two tet-a-tet meetings with the Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan during the last fifteen days and also exchanged views with the Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu. He also said that there is progress on the negotiation and everything shows that they have entered an important phase and this is the reason of the "government's" reaction.

    The leader of the New Cyprus Party (YKP) Albay Durduran said that there are important developments as regards the Cyprus problem and that is the reason that some circles are trying to create problems on the positive environment. Stressing that the current visit of Cavusoglu to the breakaway regime shows how important these developments are, Durduran accused the "government" of having no intension of solving the Cyprus problem.

    The chairman of the Social Democracy Party (SDP) Tozun Tunali stated that he cannot see the need of a "government representative" at the talks. He also said that the visit of Cavusoglu aims to give the "government" a message not to continue its wrong attitude towards the Cyprus talks and Akinci.

    Finally, Kudret Ozersay, the leader of the People's Party (DP) stated that the proposal of the "government" is not sincere and only aims to mess things up.

    (CS)

    [04] Ozersay calls on Akinci to exert pressure for a summit with the participation of the guarantor countries

    Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris newspaper (31.08.16) reports that Kudret Ozersay, the chairman of the "People's Party" (HP), sent a letter to Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci, regarding the process of the Cyprus negotiations.

    Ozersay stated in his letter that his party supports a solution of the Cyprus problem that would be accepted by both communities of the island. He however criticized the Turkish Cypriot leader for not providing enough information to the Turkish Cypriot parties as regards the talks.

    He also called on Akinci to exert pressure for the conduction of a summit with the participation of the guarantor countries because as he said, a three-party summit that would take place only with the participation of the two sides in Cyprus and the UN Secretary General will have no results. Ozersay claimed that "another road is possible", adding that it is dangerous to create the impression that the issue of guarantees can be flexible in order for the negotiations to progress.

    Ozersay also argued that Akinci should focus to the solution of the whole problem and not on a framework agreement.

    As regards the natural gas, Ozersay said that possibilities for reaching a solution will be limited in case this matter is taken for granted.

    Finally, Ozersay said that his party and the Turkish Cypriot "people" want an agreement to be reached noting that everyone has great responsibilities on the efforts for the solution of the Cyprus problem.

    (CS)

    [05] Turkish Cypriot columnists commented on the conflict between Akinci and the "government"

    In its column called "Letter from Afrika-Afrika'dan mektup" and under the title: "The conflict is between Ankara and Akinci", Turkish Cypriot daily Afrika newspaper (31.08.16) referring to the conflict between the Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci and the so-called government, writes that the insistence of the so-called government for the appointment of a "government's representative" in the last round of the Cyprus negotiation process, is a stage after a prearrangement with Ankara.

    "Ankara which insistently expresses its support to Akinci concerning the Cyprus negotiation process in order to look pleasant to the world, in the backstag, ; it has in fact motivated the government to turn against Akinci", the paper writes and adds that Turkey, in fact gives orders to Ozgurgun and Serdar for things it cannot say directly to Akinci.

    The paper writes also the following: "Actually, the conflict is not between Akinci and the government but between Akinci and Ankara. If Akinci says that 'the government has already launched a no-campaign', you should know that actually it is Ankara which launched this campaign. ...Those who act under Ankara's orders do not dare to act above these orders. Everybody knows that Akinci cannot undertake any step at the negotiation talks that is not approved by Ankara. In this situation, lack of confidence against Akinci means lack of confidence against Ankara as well. Still, due to the fact that all this [means the criticism against Akinci] is orchestrated by Ankara, it doesn't do anything to silence the government".

    Meanwhile, commenting on the same issue in his column entitled: "Who Ankara supports at the Cyprus problem? ", in Turkish Cypriot daily Yeni Duzen newspaper (31.08.16), Sami Ozuslu writes, inter alia, the following: "[?] The real question is this: If Ankara says to Akinci 'walk', then why the coalition partners in the government have a different opinion? [?] Two possibilities exist. The first one is that Turkey is really supporting the solution in Cyprus and Akinci and implements the cold war tactic by saying to the government 'leave the shows and reinforce the president's hands'. The other possibility is that Ankara, in order to create the impression that it wants a solution, pushes Akinci to speed up and on the other hand it keeps fit secretly the "status quo guards".

    [?].

    (AK)

    [06] A fugitive army officer involved in the military coup attempt in Turkey has reportedly escaped in the free areas of the Republic of Cyprus

    Turkish Cypriot daily Haberal Kibrisli (31.08.16) reports that as it was made known, the Turkish fugitive Colonel Uzay Sahin who was involved in the military coup attempt in Turkey on July 15 has escaped to the free areas of the Republic of Cyprus.

    Sahin was among the persons orchestrating the group established that night by FETO members, called "We are the peace in the country" and the one who gave orders to open fire against the crowd in the streets demonstrating against the military coup attempt.

    According to the paper, efforts are exerted for the arrest of Sahin.

    [07] More journalists detained in operation against Gulen

    Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (30.08.16) reported that detention warrants have been issued for a total of 35 people, including journalists, as a part of the probe into the media leg of the July 15 failed coup attempt in Turkey. The Istanbul Chief Public Prosecutor's Office released the detention warrants and nine journalists were detained in three different provinces.

    The detentions were carried out in Istanbul, Ankara and the Marmara province of Kocaeli, on grounds that the suspects were linked to the Fethullahist Terror Organization (FETO), believed to be behind the failed seizure of the Turkish government.

    The individuals with detention warrants issued against them were also accused of using the media organs that they worked in and their social media accounts to make propaganda on behalf of the movement of U.S.-based Islamic scholar Fethullah Gulen.

    Nurullah Ozturk, Rasih Y?lmaz, Murat Aksoy, Abdullah Alparslan Akkus, Iskender Yunus Tiryaki, Levent Arap, Omer Sahin and Ayhan Simsek were detained, as well as daily Hurriyet editor Dincer Gokce.

    A total of 18 of the sought suspects were determined to be abroad, including Ergun Babahan, as the search to apprehend the other eight suspects was ongoing.

    Another detention warrant was issued for Babahan on August 26 over a tweet he posted appearing to praise the armed attack on the motorcade of main opposition leader Kemal K?l?cdaroglu on Aug. 25.

    "All those [who] lend support to fascism will pay for it. This includes K?l?cdaroglu. This is just a beginning!" wrote Babahan. He previously worked at Gulen-linked daily Today's Zaman, which was closed down.

    (?)

    [08] "CHP can play a key role in avoiding Turkey-EU row"

    In a commentary under the above title, columnist Serkan Demirtas in Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (31.08.16) writes the following: "Last week was a very busy week in Ankara, with around a dozen senior foreign visitors flocking to the capital to express solidarity with the Turkish government following the deadly coup attempt of July 15. Foreign Ministers from a number of European countries, U.S. Vice President Joe Biden, and other lower-ranking officials from other countries met their Turkish counterparts and visited the Parliament building to see the damage caused by coup-plotters warplanes with their own eyes.

    Among the visitors was a delegation from the EU Commission, including European Parliament Rapporteur Kati Piri and European Parliament Foreign Affairs Committee Chair Elmar Brok. At a special session on post-coup developments in Turkey at the European Parliament on August 30, both Piri and Brok implied that they underestimated the coup attempt.

    (?)MPs from the European Parliament also drew attention to the ongoing purges and detentions of tens of thousands of people, urging that the handling of the aftermath of the coup attempt set a crucial test for Turkey's democracy.

    The upcoming days will witness more such visits to Turkey. European Parliament President Martin Schultz will be in Turkey on September 1, on the same day as Parliamentary Assembly of Council of Europe (PACE) President Pedro Agramunt and EU Commissioner for Migration, Home Affairs and Citizenship Dimitris Avramopulos.

    EU Foreign Minister Federica Mogherini and EU Commissioner for Enlargement Johannes Hahn will also be in Ankara on September 9, nearly two months after Gulenists within the army staged their coup attempt.

    However, late, all these visits are nevertheless important as part of mutual efforts to re-build dialogue and confidence between Ankara and Turkey.

    It's true that the measures taken by the Turkish government since the coup attempt have gone too far and created fresh concerns over the state of democracy and the rule of law in the country.

    As one diplomat recently told me: 'You rightly hail the people's reaction against the coup plotters on July 15 as important evidence of a maturing democracy. But in the aftermath of the coup we have observed a rapid degeneration of the notion of the rule of law in Turkey. Democracy and the rule of law must walk hand in hand'.

    There is no doubt that the annual progress report on Ankara's EU accession bid, to be announced by the European Commission in the coming months, will highlight this dilemma and will reiterate Brussels' concerns about the state of fundamental freedoms in Turkey. Still, it should also be written in a balanced way to show that Europe does not underestimate the danger that Turkish democracy faced on July 15.

    That is why all these visits play a crucial role in creating new bridges between Turkish and European politicians and helping to avoid new sources of tension. These efforts should also include more cautious public statements, especially on the Turkish side, as being champions in the league of Europe-bashing rhetoric will not to work to anyone's benefit.

    In that regard, Ankara should show with concrete actions that it values genuine criticisms from both Turkish opposition parties and credible European politicians and institutions. It should lend a fair ear to what the main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) leader Kemal K?l?cdaroglu is saying, especially regarding ongoing purges and detentions of scores of people, journalists, civil servants and intellectuals who did not participate in the coup attempt.

    If the government does take these steps it will not only help the continuity of dialogue and conciliation among political parties inside Turkey, it will also provide an opportunity for it to correct some of its mistakes long before the EU and other European institutions make an issue of them". TURKISH AFFAIRS SECTION

    http://www.pio.gov.cy

    (AK /AM)


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