The loss of human lives and the great disasters caused by the heavy rainfall and floods in the occupied area of the Republic of Cyprus the day before yesterday are the main issue in the Turkish Cypriot newspapers today (07.12.17).
Under the title “Both the pain and the disaster is great”, Kıbrıs reports that three young persons had lost their lives when their vehicle fell into a cliff on occupied Keryneia-Nicosia road at Ciklos area. A fourth person, who was in the same car, is still missing. The situation after floods in the occupied areas of Keryneia, Lapithos, Karavas and Dikomo resembles a battle field, writes the paper.
Moreover, measures against a possible flood were taken at Dr Burhan Nalbantoglu hospital in the occupied part of Nicosia for fear that the occupied Gonyeli dam would overflow, notes the paper, adding that the self-styled ministry of education announced that the “public” and private schools of primary and secondary education would be closed yesterday and today.
Under the title “You are murderers”, Afrika refers to the “officials” and reports: “You are talking about a ‘natural disaster’. However, you are the disaster! […] All governments which built in the rivers and gave permission for everything to be done in exchange for profit, all district governors, all mayors and the responsible engineers as well as everybody who turned a blind eye to all this should be tried!”
The paper wonders who had given the “permit” for the construction of Vuni Palace Hotel in a river bed in occupied Keryneia in a manner by which the rain water is obstructed from reaching the sea.
Yeni Düzen reports that vehicles in the above-mentioned hotel’s area had been dragged into the sea, while three vehicles in occupied Lapithos and Karavas had been carried away into the stream. Hundreds of vehicles cannot be used anymore because they sank into the mud. One house in occupied Dikomo collapsed. The self-styled mayor of Dikomo stated that the disaster had taken them 20 years back.
Other front-page titles used by some papers are as follows:
Star Kıbrıs: The price of treason against nature was heavy
Havadis: We are in mourning
Halkın Sesi: Our pain is a flood
Kıbrıs Postası: Disaster said ‘I am coming’ and it came! When it came it took lives this time
Detay: Black Thursday!
Vatan: Great disaster!
Nacak: Those responsible should be tried!
Haberatör: The lack of measures and negligence took three lives
According to illegal Bayrak television (07.12.18, http://www.brtk.net/?english_posts=akinci-expresses-sorrow-over-loss-of-life), Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci issued a statement on Thursday expressing sorrow over the loss of life and property as a result of the floods that swept through the “country”.
“We have been struck with deep sorrow caused by the flood disaster and the consequent loss of life” added Akinci, expressing the hope that similar disasters do not occur ever again.
Drawing attention to the need for greater planning and measures to limit the scale of such disasters in the future Akinci said, “the flood disaster our country has experienced, the loss of the lives of three of our young persons and the fact that one person is still missing has greatly saddened us“. He added that “all of the state institutions were working round the clock and in a speedy manner to heal the wounds inflicted by the disaster. I have no doubt that the public will work in solidarity and do all it can to assist these efforts. No doubt the most painful aspect of this disaster is the loss of the lives of our young people. I would like to express my deepest condolences to the families of those who perished and patience to those who have experienced this tragedy“.
Akinci added that society as a whole needed to understand the responsibility that fell on everyone to prevent such disasters from occurring again.
According to illegal Bayrak television (07.12.18, http://www.brtk.net/?english_posts=pm-erhurman-holds-press-conference-3), self-styled prime minister Tufan Erhürman said that “the country was going through an extraordinary period and that everyone was working hand in hand to recover from the damage caused by the flooding”.
Speaking at a press conference following a meeting at the Disaster and Emergency Coordination Center, Erhurman expressed sorrow over the loss of lives.
Stating that he had inspected the damage caused by the flooding in occupied Keryneia and the surrounding areas, Erhürman said that the Disaster and Emergency Management Authority in Turkey (AFAD) had offered to the “TRNC” full support and assistance. He added that “TRNC civil defence organisation” had been notified and that they will ask for assistance if any is required. (…)
Pointing out that there was serious damage to property in occupied villages of Karavas and Lapithos, Erhürman said: “Most of the damage caused in the Alsancak area (occupied village of Karavas) was the result of stream beds being inadequate to cope with the flow of water. We discussed the matter with the mayor and asked him to carry out the necessary work immediately to expand, improve or clear the stream beds. We were told that several problems had been experienced in the past due to the fact some private property owners in the area had not allowed the municipality to carry out such work. Private property owners must make sacrifices at some point for the good of the public. We told the mayor that the central government will give the necessary support for the work to be carried out”.
Erhurman further pointed out that there was extensive damage in the occupied area of Dikomo as well despite the fact the “municipality” had constructed walls on the banks of the stream beds. “We shall somehow compensate or cover the costs of the damage caused to property but it is impossible to bring back the lives we have lost. This is our greatest sorrow. Our greatest effort from this point onward will be to ensure that nothing like this happens again. I would like to express my deepest condolences to the families of those who lost their lives. Let us work all together to overcome this disaster in the quickest way possible” he said.
Erhürman also announced that all schools would remain closed for another day due to the extent of damage in some schools and the continuing unstable weather conditions.
Turkish Cypriot daily newspaper Halkin Sesi (07.12.18) reports that so-called foreign minister Kudret Ozersay, in statements yesterday via his social media account, expressed sorrow over the loss of lives of young people in the recent flood disaster in the “TRNC”.
Stating that he had visited and inspected the areas damaged by flooding, Ozersay said that unfortunately they all pay the price of the lack of structure and the careless exaggerations.
Illegal Bayrak television (07.12.18, http://www.brtk.net/?english_posts=oktay-calls-erhurman) broadcast that Turkish Vice-President Fuat Oktay called yesterday and expressed his sympathies to “prime minister” Tufan Erhürman, according to sources from the Turkish Vice-Presidency.
Receiving detailed information on the scale of the flood disaster experienced in the occupied area of Keryneia, Oktay expressed his condolences for those who lost their lives.
Stressing that Turkey will use every means available to dress the wounds of the flood disaster, Oktay said Turkey always stood by the “TRNC”.
On the same issue, “BRT” (07.12.18, http://www.brtk.net/?english_posts=soylu-calls-baybars) also broadcast that Turkish Interior Minister Süleyman Soylu during a telephone conversation with the self-styled interior minister Ayşegül Baybars expressed Turkey’s readiness to provide any kind of help for the areas affected by the flood disaster. (…)
Expressing his condolences for those who lost their lives as a result of the floods, Soylu said the Prime Ministry Disaster and Emergency Management Authority (AFAD) in Turkey was ready to provide all kinds of assistance to the region.
Turkish Cypriot daily newspaper Kibris (07.12.18) reports that the President of the Republic of Cyprus, Nicos Anastasiades, phoned yesterday the Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci in order to express his sorrow over the flood disaster.
Anastasiades said to Akinci that they are ready to provide any kind of help to the Turkish Cypriot community if necessary.
Turkish Cypriot leader Akinci for his part, thanked Anastasiades for his interest, telling him that he was in close contacts with the crisis desk and that Turkey and the British High Commissioner has also offered help. Akinci said further that at the current stage they would not need additional help.
Columnist Serhat Incirli in Turkish Cypriot newspaper Kıbrıs Postası (07.12.18) comments today on the disaster caused by the heavy rainfall and floods in the occupied area of Cyprus. Under the title “Apology or resignation”, Incirli reports, inter alia, the following:
“’More population’, says a friend. ‘It should become equal with the Greek Cypriots’, he adds. I salute him!
Much more population means much more buildings, much more hospitals, much more schools. Buildings were constructed, the hospitals are insufficient. And the schools! And the roads!
We had absolutely no proper laws and plans. We tried to issue ‘decrees’ and save the day.
We have even put up our ideology for sale. For the sake of daily profits, for the sake of unearned incomes we constructed houses, apartments at every point, but really every point of the country that ‘makes money’.
And we have hidden the real truth. What was the real truth? Actually, these lands on which we constructed buildings, which we divided into parcels and sold, were not ‘ours’. You were also afraid of the solution! Because the solution might have given these lands, which you divided into parcels and sold and from which you earned unbelievable money, to their real owners!
‘But they did not say yes to the Annan Plan, they said no’! […] And because they said no, was it necessary for you to choke Lapithos, Karavas and Keryneia into concrete, regardless of whether your infrastructure was adequate or existed? Did this give you the right to erect and sell buildings in stream beds, in water ways, everywhere? […]
If, however, you look at the issue with the lack of planning for 44 years, the lack of reflection, the illegality and the irresponsibility of the non-solution, everyone who became the reason for us to remain far from the solution by saying ‘the Greek Cypriots do not see us as equal, the Greek Cypriots do not want us’ is responsible. Everyone should give account. […]
What did bright attorney generals, chief judges and most leading lawyers tell you right after 1974? ‘Do not give title deeds, this is not possible’. […] The established system was such that even the CTP, which opposed the fake system, did the same when it came to power. The leading CTP members were saying ‘so what, will the Turkish Cypriots live in barracks?’ […]
Everyone who said ‘this cannot happen’, ‘you cannot squander the property right’, have been declared ‘traitors of the country’ or were silenced by saying ‘they are crazy’. Afterwards, when the warnings of these crazy persons, these traitors ‘boomed’ and exploded in the hands of the thieves, they were forced to establish compensation commissions. They abandoned ‘global exchange’ and passed to ‘compensation, return, exchange’ [position].
It failed. Why it failed? Because no matter how many laws, how many tricks, how many tactics are materialized, almost every individual knew very well that this land had an owner. […]
They tried to gain profit from every single span of looted land. No one paid attention even to the fact that the price of those [lands that had] ‘Turkish title deed’ was higher! This, however, was a message! It was a warning! They sold cheaper the [lands] with Greek Cypriot title deed, that is, the looted ones, that is, the stolen plots of land!
Meanwhile, they of course neither built infrastructure nor felt the need to do so! They had the mentality of ‘what is the need of building infrastructure for the property of the Greeks’! […]
Of course we are not going to blame the current government, the prime minister, his colleagues in the cabinet!
Some ones should, however, come out and explain that the lack of planning for so many years, the lack of reflection, […] the theft, the looting was an ‘immorality’. And apologize! […]
My issue is not our brothers, who are members of the government. My issue is the acceptance of this ‘system’, which derives from the lack of system or the absence of state, the apology and the beginning from zero. This is why the solution is a precondition. The Cyprus problem must be solved. We have no other way. There is no other way.
That is, is the non-solution the reason for the rain and the flood? No! However, the reason for the deaths, the material and moral damage, yes, it is definitely the political non-solution.”
Turkish Cypriot daily newspaper Kibris (07.12.18) reports that the opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) leader Kemal Kilicdaroglu is paying a one-day illegal visit today to the occupied area of Cyprus for a series of “contacts”.
According to the paper, Kilicdaroglu met with Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci.
Kilicdaroglu will further meet with the “speaker” of the so-called assembly, Teberruken Ulucay, the so-called minister of national education and culture, Cemal Ozyigit, the so-called foreign minister Kudret Ozersay and with representatives of the main Turkish Cypriot political parties.
According to illegal Bayrak television (07.12.18-http://www.brtk.net/akinci-chp-genel-baskani-kilicdaroglunu-kabul-etti/) Akinci met today with Kilicdaroglu at the so-called presidential palace.
During the meeting, Akinci briefed Kilicdaroglu on the latest flood disaster in the “TRNC” which resulted in the loss of lives of three youth and stressed the need for undertaking measures in order to be able to confront such natural disasters.
In his turn, Kilicdaroglu expressed sorrow over the flood disaster and wished mercy for the deads.
Referring to the Cyprus problem, Kilicdaroglu alleged that CHP is a party which from the very beginning had staked a claim on the Cyprus cause and had always exerted efforts for the recognition of the “TRNC” in the international arena. He further argued that in all meetings the party holds with EU officials, it always asks for the reasons why the Direct Trade Regulation is not implemented.
Expressing support to Akinci’s efforts on the Cyprus problem, Kilicdaroglu alleged further that they always pay attention to the development of the “TRNC” and to improvement of the Turkish Cypriot “people’s welfare”.
Referring to the so-called universities, Kilicdaroglu supported that the foreign students who study at the “universities” in the “TRNC” will create opportunities for the recognition and promotion of the “TRNC” upon returning to their countries.
Also, Akinci recalled that within the framework of the negotiation process, an Ad-Hoc committee has been established in the EU with the aim to speed up the harmonization process of the Turkish Cypriot institutions in case of a solution and added that after the collapse of the talks in Crans Montana, the activities of this committee were ended.
Akinci supported that that whether or not negotiation talks are taking place, this committee should work for the harmonization of the Turkish Cypriot community with the acquis communautaire. Akinci further accused both the Greek Cypriot leadership and the EU officials of not being helpful and of not performing their duties towards this issue. He went on to say that apart from that, they will continue their struggle for the improvement of the “TRNC’s institutions”, for democracy and the development of their “economy”.
According to Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (06.12.18, http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/erdogan-says-akp-will-run-eco-friendly-election-campaign-139505), President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, speaking during an Ankara meeting with provincial AKP (Justice and Development Party) officials, criticized the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) over its leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu’s recent visit to Germany.
“This person visited Germany and a few European countries. This person who ends up in Germany before every election in Turkey met with some people. Looking at the persons he met with, we see a different picture. He met with people who have dedicated their political lives to enmity toward Turkey, with close links to the terrorist organizations,” Erdoğan claimed, referring to the illegal PKK.
“We can see him in the same photo with those who appeared at the German federal parliament with the rags of the terrorist organizations,” he added.
The President also questioned why the CHP leader’s meetings were closed to the press. “We can roughly guess what Kılıçdaroğlu said against our country behind closed doors,” he said.
The CHP leader paid a visit to Germany by the end of last month, meeting with German politicians before moving on to Austria on Nov. 30.
According to Ankara Anatolia news agency (07.12.18, https://www.aa.com.tr/en/politics/turkish-fm-feto-abusing-european-security-body/1331583), Turkey's Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu on Thursday expressed his discomfort at the participation of terror-linked groups at the events of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE).
Speaking at the 25th Council of Ministers Meeting of OSCE in Italy's Milano, Cavusoglu claimed: "Persons and groups linked to Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETO) have been disguising themselves as civil society actors and have been abusing OSCE events. This is against OSCE's own rules and past practice. We have patiently but persistently been raising this problem for two years now, this cannot go on. We expect a concrete and satisfactory solution to this problem, without any further debate". (…)
Cavusoglu expressed concern over the tensions between Ukraine and Russia following a dispute in the Black Sea. "Recent developments in Kerch Strait are concerning. We urge responsible behaviour and respect for international law and the tension should be de-escalated as soon as possible," he added. (…)
Cavusoglu further said Turkey supports Ukraine's sovereignty and integrity including Crimea, (…) and added that frozen conflicts such as Nagorno-Karabakh, Transnistria, Abkhazia and South Ossetia are indeed to be resolved. "Again, our guiding principle must be international law and full respect for the territorial integrity of the states concerned," he argued. (…)
Earlier on Thursday, Cavusoglu held bilateral meetings with OSCE Secretary General Thomas Greminger and with his Kyrgyz, Belarusian, Danish, Belgian and Austrian counterparts.
According to Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (06.12.18, http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/hdp-mp-onder-turns-himself-in-to-authorities-after-court-ruling-139511), former lawmaker of the Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) Sırrı Süreyya Önder on Dec. 6 turned himself in to authorities in the north-western province of Kocaeli, after a court on Dec. 4 upheld his prison sentence on “terror” charges. “Whatever I’ve done, I’m standing behind it. Peace and democracy will win,” Önder told reporters before entering prison.
Önder, HDP’s former lawmaker for Ankara, was sentenced to three years and six months in jail for “spreading terrorist propaganda” in a court decision together with former HDP co-chair Selahattin Demirtaş in September. His jail term was upheld by the Istanbul Regional Court’s 2nd penal chamber on Dec. 4. Önder will serve his sentence at the Kandıra High Security Prison.
Around a dozen HDP lawmakers are currently in prison pending trial for terrorism-related offenses after their parliamentary immunity was lifted in May 2016. (…)
According to Turkish daily Sabah (07.12.18, https://www.dailysabah.com/diplomacy/2018/12/06/turkish-intel-chief-fidan-briefs-us-senators-on-khashoggi-murder), National Intelligence Organization (MİT) head Hakan Fidan held a closed-door meeting with CIA Director Gina Haspel and several U.S. Senators over Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi's murder, Al Jazeera reported on Thursday.
Citing Turkish sources, the report said that the top spy briefed members of the Senate about Khashoggi's killing upon request of the lawmakers. Turkish media reported that Fidan would also hold other meetings with top officials on the issue.
The reported meeting comes days after CIA Director Gina Haspel briefed a select few members of the Senate about the murder. Senators leaving the briefing said they are even more convinced that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman was involved in the death of Khashoggi. (…)
U.S. intelligence officials have concluded that the crown prince must have at least known of the plot, but Trump has been reluctant to pin the blame.
Meanwhile, columnist Abdulkadir Selvi, writing in Turkish daily Hurriyet (06.12.18, http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/saudi-courier-in-khashoggi-murder-identified-by-turkey-columnist-139491), reported that Turkish officials have identified another key figure in the murder of the Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi who operated as a “courier” between Istanbul and Riyadh in the planning stage of the brutal killing.
Ahmed Abdullah al-Muzaini worked as Saudi Arabia’s “intelligence station chief” at the kingdom’s consulate in Istanbul where Khashoggi was killed on Oct. 2, according to Selvi, who described the man as “a figure at the centre of the whole traffic related to the Khashoggi murder”. (…)
“From the moment Khashoggi entered the consulate for the first time, the process was managed by Muzaini. He flew to Riyadh on Sept. 29 and met Saudi intelligence deputy chief Ahmed al-Asiri, who formed the team that would kill Khashoggi,” Selvi wrote.
The Istanbul Chief Prosecutor’s Office filed an application Dec. 5 to obtain arrest warrants for Assiri, as well as Saud al-Qahtani, a close aide of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. (…) Selvi concluded by writing: “All arrows are pointing to Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman”.
According to Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (06.12.18, http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/main-opposition-chp-reveals-names-of-mayoral-candidates-for-16-provinces-139513), the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) has revealed the names of its mayoral candidates for 16 provinces. The party picked the currently serving mayors of eight cities to re-run, six of whom will run for metropolitan municipalities, which have bigger budgets.
In a statement on Dec. 6, the party said Eskişehir Mayor Yılmaz Büyükerşen, Hatay Mayor Lütfü Savaş, Muğla Mayor Osman Gürün, Aydın Mayor Özlem Çerçioğlu and Tekirdağ Mayor Kadir Albayrak will run for another term. Edirne Mayor Recep Gürkan will also run for another term. The party also announced its candidates for dozens of districts.
This was the first CHP list announced for the March 31, 2019 local elections, as the party continues talks with the İYİ (Good) Party for a partial alliance. The main opposition party is yet to reveal candidates for Turkey’s three largest cities, Istanbul, Ankara and İzmir.
According to Turkish daily Yeni Safak (07.12.18, https://www.yenisafak.com/en/news/turkey-arrests-41-ex-air-force-officers-in-feto-probe-3468537), forty-one former Turkish Air Force personnel were arrested early Friday in the capital Ankara in a probe into FETÖ, the group behind the 2016 defeated coup, according to police sources.
The 41 were part of a group of 87 former air force sergeants wanted by Ankara prosecutors for their links to the Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETÖ), said the sources, who asked not to be named due to restrictions on speaking to the media.
Separately, Istanbul prosecutors issued arrest warrants for 41 active-duty soldiers -- including a major, two captains, five first lieutenants, and two lieutenants -- at the Istanbul gendarmerie for their alleged FETÖ links. (…)
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