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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Cypriot and Turkish Media Review, 17-08-17

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 <>



  • [01] Cavusoglu accuses the Greek Cypriots of not wanting a solution within the UN parameters and of showing the security and guarantees as a pretext
  • [02] Turkish Finance Minister Naci Agbal inaugurated "the e-tax automation system" in the breakaway regime
  • [03] Turkish Cypriot political parties and NGOs protested against the attempt to "transform the Turkish Cypriot community"
  • [04] "Turkish Cyprus can welcome Greek Cypriots back to ghost town Varosha"
  • [05] Columnist assesses Ataoglu's statements as blaming Turkey of being the cause for the "embargoes" implemented on the Turkish Cypriots
  • [06] An imam was "arrested" in the breakaway regime on the framework of FETO investigations
  • [07] Siber is reportedly involved in a "plot of land scandal"
  • [08] Asil Nadir has been secretly granted an advance loan by the "development bank"
  • [09] Turkey's EU minister calls Merkel's remarks on customs union 'unfortunate'
  • [10] Erdogan to tour Gulf countries
  • [11] Turkey, Estonia discuss EU ties, refugee crisis


    [01] Cavusoglu accuses the Greek Cypriots of not wanting a solution within the UN parameters and of showing the security and guarantees as a pretext

    Turkish Cypriot daily Havadis newspaper (17.08.17) reports that Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu has alleged that the Greek Cypriots and Greece had never approached a solution to the Cyprus problem within the existing UN parameters because "in their view they have a state which joined the EU" and "therefore they do not want to share the administration, the power and other issues". "The security and guarantees were the pretext of the issue", he claimed in statements yesterday to TRT, Turkish state television.

    Replying to a question on the negotiations for finding a solution to the Cyprus problem, Cavusoglu reiterated the allegation that Turkey had been by the "TRNC's people" side and argued: "There were talks and negotiations on the island under the UN roof. Six chapters exist. Convergences existed in the four chapters but issues which remained open existed as well. However, we wanted to discuss all together the last two chapters, especially the issue of the territory, including the security and guarantees, and reach a decision".

    Furthermore, he alleged that Turkey and the Turkish Cypriot side did whatever they could on this issue, submitted their proposals in a concrete manner from the very first day and everybody saw that Turkey and the "TRNC" were extremely "reasonable and constructive".

    Referring to the drillings carried out in the Republic of Cyprus' exclusive economic zone, Cavusoglu described them as "a mistake" and alleged that "the Turkish Cypriot people also have rights here".


    [02] Turkish Finance Minister Naci Agbal inaugurated "the e-tax automation system" in the breakaway regime

    Illegal Bayrak television (17.08.17) broadcast that the first phase of the "tax automation project carried out by the finance ministry's tax and revenues department" in the breakaway regime has come into force and that it was inaugurated with a ceremony yesterday.

    The Turkish Finance Minister Naci Agbal took part in the ceremony and stated that the new system will give better "services" to the "citizens": "There are a variety of projects that are being carried out in full cooperation between Turkey and the TRNC and thanks to these projects the TRNC is developing" alleged Agbal.

    "Deputy prime minister finance minister" Serdar Denktas stated that the new "e-tax system would allow citizens to pay for their taxes more easily and that the e-finance system will also come into force soon".

    Arguing that the "public finances" were improving with every passing day, he said that in the first 7 months alone the surplus revenue was 170million TL.

    In addition, Bayrak also reported that Agbal met with "prime minister" Huseyin Ozgurgun yesterday.

    "We believe that this project will make important contributions in the future services of the TRNC finance ministry. We will be bringing many automation projects which we already use in tax offices in Turkey to the TRNC. We would like to thank you here. We had many projects in the field of public finance however we did not have any project in the field of tax offices. We are happy to launch this project" Agbal said during the meeting.

    Stating that the project will add new dimension to the relations between the two "countries", he expressed the hope that "the current cooperation and relations will continue increasingly".

    For his part, Ozgurgun expressed happiness over the realization of the project. "Both the cooperation and relations between Turkey and the TRNC and the cooperation and projects developed by the two finance ministers at this stage are so important for us" Ozgurgun argued.

    "We are developing and realizing many projects with motherland Turkey within the framework of the economic and financial cooperation protocol. This continues in the fields of finance and economy, in infrastructure projects, in the development projects of the municipalities and in many other fields" he added.

    Claiming that "the economic and financial cooperation protocol was being implemented wholesomely", he said he attaches great importance to the cooperation between the two "finance ministers".+

    [03] Turkish Cypriot political parties and NGOs protested against the attempt to "transform the Turkish Cypriot community"

    Turkish Cypriot daily Ortam newspaper (17.08.17) reports that some political parties and NGOs in the occupied area of Cyprus organized yesterday a protest in front of the "headquarters" of the so-called ministry of education, in order to condemn the efforts exerted by the so-called government and Turkey to implement "policies" aiming to "transform the Turkish Cypriot community culture, language, religion and identity".

    According to the paper, the protesters laid a black wreath in front of the "ministry" in order to convey it to the "government" and the "Turkish embassy" in the occupied area of Cyprus. Moreover, the protesters opened a placard signed by the Turkish Cypriot Secondary School Teachers' Trade Union (KTOEOS), calling the "administrators in the country" to hands off their "culture, religion and identity".

    Speaking during the protest, Selma Eylem, chairperson of "KTOEOS trade union", stated inter alia, that with the "religious affairs law, the Quran lessons and the education which is supported by implementations such as those followed in the camping in Dardanelles, the aim is to transform the Turkish Cypriot community and to assault their "culture, language, religion, identity and institutions". "We won't accept such thing to happen", Eylem said.

    Also speaking, Sener Elcil, general secretary of the "Turkish Cypriot teacher's trade union" ("KTOS") condemned the fact that although there is a serious lack of schools in occupied Keryneia due to the increased number of students, the "government" has spent 33 million dollars for the construction of a mosque. Elcil added that this is a project which is carried out with money coming from Saudi Arabia, underling that "it is obvious that it is directed from Turkey".


    [04] "Turkish Cyprus can welcome Greek Cypriots back to ghost town Varosha"

    Under the above title, Turkish Hurriyet Daily News (17.08.17) publishes the following article by Barcin Yinanc:

    "Before the division of Cyprus in 1974, Varosha - a resort town in Famagusta - was booming. The coastline was reportedly a destination for film stars like Elizabeth Taylor and Richard Burton.

    It is now a ghost town. Its hotels, restaurants and high-rise structures looming over sandy beaches have been slowly decaying.

    The Turkish side has never opened it to new settlers, knowing that it will remain under Greek administration in case of a permanent settlement. But even those who have always been in favor of a settlement are now realizing there is no solution in sight.

    The hopes of those who genuinely believed in the reunification of the island dashed especially after the collapse of the last round of negotiations in Switzerland last July. After all, even if Nikos Anastasiades on the Greek side and Mustafa Ak?nc? on the Turkish side, who were supposedly known to be the most pro-solution leaders, had failed to reach a compromise, that leaves no room for realistic optimism. So if this is the end of the road in terms of a negotiated solution with Greek Cyprus, what should be the strategy to be followed by the Turkish Cypriots?

    In my previous article, I had mentioned the decisions of the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) which had recognized the Immovable Property Commission set up in Turkish Cyprus as an effective remedy for the property claims of the Greek Cypriots. The commission had received more than 5000 applications from Greek Cypriots, but the commission's work had slowed down due to the peace talks, and had come to a standstill recently as the Turkish government cut the flow of money necessary for compensations.

    The commission so far did not have a specific priority in finalizing the applications. But if it were to be reactivated; it could start from prioritizing cases from Guzelyurt (Morphu), which was completely inhabited by Greek Cypriots before the division, as well as Varosha. In Guzelyurt, Greek Cypriots would be provided financial compensation, which in the end could decrease the number of those who want to come back and resettle. That way the Greek Cypriot administration's request in a new round of negotiations (if it will ever take place again) for a return of Guzelyurt will be obstructed as it will lose its practical justification.

    Varosha on the other hand could be open to its former inhabitants to return and resettle. This is a rather more complicated issue. Relevant U.N. Security Council decisions foresee the return of Varosha under the control of the U.N. But there are more than 100 applications in front of the Immovable Property Commission from Greek Cypriots who were residents of Varosha. If the commission quickly decides on their return to their original owners, the Greek Cypriot administration's objections could be overturned, sighting the Euro Court decision that recognized the commission as a legitimate body.

    But the decision has to have practical outcome for the applicants, they need to come back to start business by restoring their facility. That would require a quick restoration of infrastructures like water, electricity, and sewerage. And finally tax exemptions could be provided to compensate for the loss of use for the past 42 years.

    Obviously most of the Greek Cypriots would not be happy to see this course of action. But even the most pro-solution circles in Turkey and Turkish Cyprus are fast coming to the conclusion that Greek Cypriots are not leaving any other option.

    But the Greek Cypriots need not to worry. The course of action described above requires a high degree of sophisticated strategic thinking, which the Turkish government lacks currently. They are far busy with other priorities, like finding ways to silence dissent in Turkey."

    [05] Columnist assesses Ataoglu's statements as blaming Turkey of being the cause for the "embargoes" implemented on the Turkish Cypriots

    Under the title "Being a wedge in front of the motherland", Sami Ozuslu in Turkish Cypriot daily Yeni Duzen newspaper (17.08.17) refers to the latest statements made by Fikri Ataoglu, self-styled minister of tourism of the breakaway regime in the occupied area of Cyprus, to economic editors from Turkey and reports that Ataoglu "saw that the king is naked and said it".

    Ozuslu notes that these statements were not given much space in the sovereign media in Turkey, because the controlled Turkish media do not see the news regarding Cyprus, if these do not include "national or religious valor". The columnist adds, inter alia, the following:

    "[…] Although Fikri Ataoglu used a sentence such as 'the TRNC is also an island', which could be perceived as funny from the point of view of geography, our issue is not this part of his statement. The minister of tourism and environment has sent a hard message full of reproach to Turkey's officials:

    '(…) There is absolutely nothing which those who live in the TRNC could do regarding the lifting of the isolation and the embargoes. If there is any action we attempt to take regarding the lifting of the embargoes, the population we call as a population of 300-400 thousands stands as a wedge in front of the motherland. We have no intention of being a wedge in front of the motherland…'

    The meaning of this – as I understand it - is the following:

    'Turkey is the cause of the embargoes implemented on the TRNC. Because Turkey knows that it will suffer damage, if it attempts to take a step regarding the TRNC. For this reason they have put the northern part of Cyprus and the Turkish Cypriot community into the deep freezer. We are waiting there in a frozen situation'.

    Is he wrong? He is not! Speaking at a meeting with Turkey's Economy Editors' Association, Fikri Ataoglu gives an example which strengthens this message and stresses that the travel agents in Turkey do not market the TRNC and that instead they advertise the Greek islands.

    My first comment to Ataoglu's words, who is a representative of the right-wing politicians, was 'good morning'. I wish that he explains these to the other members of the cabinet, which he serves together, and mainly to Tahsin Ertugruloglu. '[…] Let aside the recognition of the TRNC, even taking a step on the issue of the embargoes is not in harmony with Turkey's interests. If we lift our finger, Turkey knows that it will be cut off from the world. It did not oppose and cannot oppose to the world. The capital groups here will not allow this. This situation has not changed since 1983. I saw this, I understood this…'

    I wish he said these in public. […] Thanks to Ataoglu, however, because he said 'half of this' at least. […]"


    [06] An imam was "arrested" in the breakaway regime on the framework of FETO investigations

    The Turkish Cypriot press reports today (17.08.17) that investigations regarding the terrorist FETO organization in the breakaway regime continue.

    Halkin Sesi writes that some books that are considered to propagandize Gulen's FETO movement were discovered at a recycled bin in occupied Mintzeli village and the Imam of Geunyeli mosque Ahmet Cakakli was "arrested" over the case. Cakakli claimed that the books did not belong to him, that were read by his late mother and that he has no connections with FETO.

    Reporting on the same issue, Star Kibris writes that there is panic among FETO members in occupied area of Cyprus and claims that Cakakli was "arrested" because he tried to destroy books which belong in the organization.

    Yeni Duzen writes that an investigation is taking place regarding FETO that led to the "arrest" of 11 persons who were brought in front of a "court". The paper also reports that the investigations on the case are carried out secretly.


    [07] Siber is reportedly involved in a "plot of land scandal"

    Under the front-page title: "Can you sleep well in the nights?", Turkish daily Yeni Bakis newspaper (17.08.18) reports that one more scandal came to light concerning "a new plot of land" near the occupied Agios Dometios crossing point.

    According to the paper, the above mentioned plot of land which is located near the Agios Dometios crossing point has opened as "residential zone", something which was kept secret from the public. Among those who benefited from this development and immediately bought plots were the "speaker" of the so-called assembly Sibel Siber, her brother Ekin Adademir who is a chairman" of the "administration board" of a bank, the "owner" of the Creditwest bank and a developer in the occupied area of Cyprus called Turgay Ersalici.

    The paper condemns strongly Siber's involvement in the scandal underling that instead of working to protect the "people's interests" as the "speaker of the assembly", she is working for serving "personal interests and gains".


    [08] Asil Nadir has been secretly granted an advance loan by the "development bank"

    Turkish Cypriot daily Havadis newspaper (17.08.17) reports that the "management" of the "development bank" operating in the occupied area of Cyprus in a "secret operation" from its "administration board" has given an advance loan to businessman and ex-convict Asil Nadir for the occupied Lefkonoiko project aiming to start flights for cargo aircrafts at the illegal Lefkonoiko airport. As the paper writes, Nadir is expected to use the loan for paying his debts in "Kibris Media group".

    The paper further reports that the loan to Nadir was granted after the pressure exerted by the National Unity Party (UBP) wing of the "government" to the "bank" and in spite of the negative "report" prepared by the "attorney general".

    In addition, the paper adds that UBP was exerting pressure so that with a "decision" of the "council of ministers" the loan was to be granted to Nadir directly and not as equivalent for a progress billing of the investment.


    [09] Turkey's EU Minister calls Merkel's remarks on customs union 'unfortunate'

    Turkish Hurriyet Daily News (17.08.17) reports that Turkey's EU Minister Omer Celik described as "unfortunate" German Chancellor Angela Merkel's remarks suggesting that Berlin would not pursue an update of the customs union with Ankara.

    Celik said bilateral problems between the two countries should not be reflected on Turkey's relationship with the EU.

    "We are not opening new chapters in Turkey's [EU] accession bid and we have lowered membership preparation aid to a minimum. Also, for the time being the customs union deal with Turkey will not be changed or updated," Merkel said on Aug. 16 when asked about ties with Turkey during a live interview on YouTube.

    The Customs Union between Turkey and the bloc entered into force on Dec. 31, 1995. It covers all industrial goods but does not address agriculture (except processed agricultural products), services or public procurement right now.

    [10] Erdogan to tour Gulf countries

    Turkish daily Hurriyet (17.08.17) reports that Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan will launch a tour next Monday in Gulf countries including Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Qatar and Jordan seeking ways to solve the Gulf crisis.

    Erdogan's tour will start on Monday, August 21 with Jordan to be his first stop. During his one-day visit to Jordan, Erdogan will meet with the King of Jordan Abdullah with whom he will discuss the ties between the two countries, the Israel-Palestine dispute, the recent developments in Syria, the planning referendum for independence to take place in Northern Iraq and the Gulf crisis.


    [11] Turkey, Estonia discuss EU ties, refugee crisis

    Turkish daily Yeni Safak newspaper (16.08.17) reports that the Prime Ministers of Turkey and Estonia met on Wednesday for high-level talks in the capital Ankara, where the issue of a Turkey-EU refugee deal resurfaced.

    At a joint news conference, Turkish Premier Binali Yildirim and Estonian leader Juri Ratas -- whose country currently holds the rotating six-month EU presidency -- said the two states -- both NATO members -- enjoyed good bilateral relations.

    However, Yildirim said: "We have launched a program with the EU on the refugee crisis but this program doesn't run at the desired speed," and added that Turkey had received only €80 million ($9.3 million) out of a promised €3 billion ($3.5 billion) budget to help Syrian refugees.

    Turkey became one of the first countries to "bear the difficulties and authority gap brought about by the civil war in Iraq and Syria," Yildirim also said, recalling how over three million refugees had been sheltered in Turkey since 2011.

    Ratas said he appreciated Turkey's "magnificent" work in preventing a refugee influx into EU territory.

    "The refugee crisis is a significant issue for the EU. This is a field that requires cooperation between EU member states and their neighbors," he added.

    Turkey's EU membership bid was also discussed in the premiers' meeting.

    Yildirim said he expected Wednesday's visit by Ratas would help renew Turkey's EU ties.

    "We are waiting for some steps to revive Turkey-EU relations. I hope that some concrete developments could happen under your [Estonia's] EU presidency," Yildirim said.


    (CS / AM)

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