A. Turkish Cypriot Press
B. Turkish Press
Turkish Cypriot newspaper Havadis (11.04.19) reports that Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci issued another written statement yesterday replying to statements made by the Greek Cypriot side, after the recent contacts of the UNSG’s temporary Special Adviser to Cyprus, Jane Holl Lute.
Reiterating the allegation that the Turkish Cypriot side worked to contribute positively and constructively to Lute’s effort to shape the terms of reference, Akinci claimed that “the way of reason” for making the solution in Cyprus possible was not to resume everything from scratch, but “to focus on the result within a reasonable period of time, while remaining committed to the existing agreements, the 11 February 2014 document and the framework submitted by UNSG Guterres on 30 June 2017”.
Akinci alleged that President Anastasiades could not keep up with this “constructive stance” of the Turkish Cypriot side and made “aggressive statements that had nothing to do with reality with a skirmishing style during such a sensitive period”. He also claimed:
“If Mr Anastasiades, when touching upon the population issue, had the feeling of urgency for a solution, he would have exerted an effort for reaching a solution within the framework of the numbers we had submitted on the condition that they are valid by the end of 2016 and by taking our warnings into consideration. An approach, which on the one hand wastes the opportunities for a solution and on the other complains about the consequences of the status quo, cannot be evaluated as sincere. Absolutely nothing remains static. Time that passes without a solution changes the physical infrastructure and the population structure. Mr Anastasiades’ effort, contrary to the past agreements, to show as an obstacle the political equality, which is a parameter of the UN, and the Turkish Cypriot people’s right to effectively participate in the decisions required by it, is unacceptable. […] The approach which rejects the political equality of the Turkish Cypriots and their effective participation in the decisions shows a serious problem of mentality. Those who allege that there is no other place in the world where the political equality and the effective participation in the decisions is implemented, should first of all remember the decision taking mechanism in the EU, without taking into consideration that the population percentages of the members […]. Even in the national governments of partnership (coalitions), the method is to take decisions with compromise and not the unilateral decisions of the big partner. […]”
Referring to the security issue, Akinci reiterated the view that the security need of the one community should not constitute a threat for the security of the other community and that both communities should feel safe. Arguing that a solution could be reached on this issue with a balanced approached taking into consideration the reasonable concerns of both sides on security, Akinci alleged that “there could be no result with a unilateral maximalist mentality which nullifies an international agreement from the very first day”.
Under the title “Lift the sport restrictions for the Turkish Cypriots”, Turkish Cypriot daily Yeni Duzen (11.04.19) reports that Armagan Candan, “deputy” with the Republican Turkish Party (CTP), addressing the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE), made a call to lift the restrictions imposed on the Turkish Cypriots in the sport sector. He claimed that Turkish Cypriot athletes are barred from competing in international sporting activities due to unjust “embargoes” imposed on them.
Candan, who was attending PACE with Hamza Ersan Saner – “deputy” with the National Unity Party (UBP), alleged that subjecting Turkish Cypriots, who are part of the European family, to such discrimination was unacceptable.
Addressing the session following the presentation of the report titled “Stop hate speech and acts of hatred in sports”, Candan said that all acts of hatred and discrimination should stop. Pointing out that sports had a unique way of bringing people together, Candan alleged that Turkish Cypriot athletes were excluded from international sporting activities and could not participate in sports events such as the Olympics. He called on international bodies and federations such as UEFA, FİFA and the International Olympic Committee to seek formulas to end such acts of discrimination against Turkish Cypriot athletes.
“Sports has a unifying power but the fact that Turkish Cypriot and Greek Cypriot teams cannot even play a simple football match is disappointing. The match organised by Peace and Sport in March played between Mağusa Türk Gücü and Nea Salamina was a good example for the future,” he supported.
Candan concluded his remarks by calling on the two leaders in the island to form a bi-communal technical committee on sports to take steps in such issues.
According to Turkish Cypriot daily Yeni Duzen (11.04.19), “13 more persons, who were born or arrived to the country at a very young age and completed also their education there, were granted the TRNC citizenship. The citizenships, which were granted with a decision of the council of ministers, were announced at the official gazette dated April 2, 2019, with the justification”.
The names of the persons, who were granted the “TRNC citizenship”, are Cansu Renklitepe, Huseyin Deste, Medet Durmaz, Eyup Tuluk, Nesimi Soykan, Ebru Komurcu, Huseyin Komurcu, Duygu Aslancan, Halegul Cakir, Ahmet Erol, Gokhan Mert Nazik, Umut Elmas, Mahmut Aslan.
Turkish Cypriot daily Afrika newspaper (11.04.19) reports that the chairman of the Turkish Cypriot doctors’ trade union ((Tıp-İş), Dr Ahmet Varis, has stated that the annual number of applications at the “emergency departments of the state hospitals” in the occupied area of Cyprus is more that the population number”.
Speaking yesterday during a press conference, Varis said that “the main reason for this, is the fact that the capacity of the health services cannot meet the needs of the population of the country”. He further referred to the deficiencies and the lack of infrastructure and personnel especially at the “intensive care unit”.
Varis stressed the need for investments to take place in the “health sector”, to proceed to the improvement of infrastructure at the “state hospitals” and to increase the personnel.
Varis called also ON the “officials” instead of making populist statements on the issue of the “health sector” to undertake measures and concrete steps and to implement policies in the long-run that will be able to improve the “sector”.
Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris (11.04.19) reports that so-called minister of tourism and environment Fikri Ataoglu, met with a delegation of the “Turkish Cypriot youth association” based in the UK.
Speaking during the meeting, Atatoglu stated that there are over 300 thousand Turkish Cypriots living in the UK and added that they are exerting efforts to reinforce further their ties with the Turkish Cypriots who live there. Ataoglu further called on the Turkish Cypriot youth not to forget their “country” and their bonds with “north Cyprus”.
Alleging that around 1 million 200 thousand tourists have visited the “TRNC” this year, Ataoglu added their goal is for this number to reach 1 million 500 thousand for the year of 2019.
Turkish daily Yeni Safak (11.04.19 https://www.yenisafak.com/en/world/erdogan-over-30000-feto-terrorists-behind-bars-in-turkey-3478677) reports that Turkey's President said that over 20,000 Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETO) members have been convicted of various crimes, and 10,000 others have been remanded in custody.
"Now, there are 30,559 FETO members in jail, including 20,226 convicted, and 10,333 remanded," Recep Tayyip Erdogan told an event in the capital Ankara marking the 174th anniversary of the Turkish Police Force.
Stating that the fight against the FETO terror group continues, Erdogan also said over 31,000 personnel have been dismissed from law enforcement. "The number dismissed from the army is over 15,000, while over 4,000 were also dismissed from the judiciary," he added.
Turkish daily Yeni Safak (11.04.19 https://www.yenisafak.com/en/news/turkey-will-look-elsewhere-if-us-wont-sell-patriots-f-35s-turkish-fm-3478609) reports that Turkey may expand its planned purchase of Russian air defence systems if it cannot buy U.S. Patriots missile defence systems, and it will also look for alternatives if it cannot receive F-35 jets, Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu said.
“Some member states of NATO have S-300s. Having an air defense system does not contradict with the NATO membership,” Çavuşoğlu added.
He also said Turkey had not received a positive response from Washington over its proposal to form a joint working group to look into Ankara's planned purchase of the Russian S-400 missile defence systems.
Rebuffing U.S. threats to cancel a deal for F-35 jets if the S-400s are delivered, Çavuşoğlu said in the absence of F-35s, Turkey could buy fighters jets from another source until it is able to produce its own.
Turkish daily Yeni Safak (11.04.19 https://www.yenisafak.com/en/economy/turkey-to-focus-structural-reforms-treasury-minister-3478639) reports that Turkey will focus on structural reforms to achieve the target of becoming greater and more powerful, the Turkish Treasury and Finance Minister said.
"This transformation and reform process will decisively continue in a 4.5-year period with no election," Berat Albayrak said.
Speaking at a news conference to announce the government's action plan, Albayrak said the financial sector prioritized a new set of structural reforms for 2019.
"Strengthening state-run lenders' capital structure will be our first step," he said, noting the Treasury will issue 28-billion Turkish lira, around$5 billion worth, government debt securities to make state banks' balance sheets robust.
Albayrak said studies in coordination with the banking watchdog and banking association are continuing to support private lenders' capital structure. The minister noted that a new individual pension system according to citizens' income level will be determined in the coming period.
"We give priority to create an effective and healthy saving system, starting from state to individuals, to eliminate fragilities in economy. "In the next five years, funds accumulated in the new retirement system will exceed 10% of the country's gross domestic product," Albayrak said. He added that Turkey will also take steps in real sector to ensure healthy working of financial sector.
Turkish daily Yeni Safak (11.04.19 https://www.yenisafak.com/en/news/russia-firm-suggests-copter-co-production-with-turkey-3478645) reports that Russia sees the possibility of launching joint helicopter production with Turkey, the head of a copter design and manufacturing company, has said.
Speaking to Anadolu Agency on the sidelines of Monday’s meeting in Moscow of the Turkish and Russian presidents, Russian Helicopters CEO Andrey Boginsky said he visited Turkey last week to talk with potential buyers. "I say that not because we sell them, but because of our previous experience” with other countries, he explained. He added that the three copters would show the capabilities of Russian equipment.
"We know the successful experience of our Turkish colleagues in producing combat helicopters with the help of colleagues from Italy. We see prospects in the civil sector too, and depending on our goals and objectives, we have different types of helicopters, so we’re open to suggestions," he said.
Turkish Hurriyet Daily News (11.04.19 http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/erdogan-bahceli-meet-at-presidential-palace-142569) reports that President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan met with Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) leader Devlet Bahçeli on April 10 at the presidential palace in Ankara.
It was their first meeting since the local elections on March 31. Their meeting, which was closed to the press, started at 12:10 p.m. and lasted about 30 minutes, media reports said. No official announcement was made following the meeting.
Erdoğan and Bahçeli had forged an election alliance called the “People’s Alliance.” After their joint efforts to win the referendum to shift the country to a presidential system in 2017, the AKP and MHP formed the alliance ahead of the June 24, 2018 elections. Their alliance later extended to the local elections on March 31.
Bahçeli said on April 9 that his party supports its ally AKP for a re-election appeal in Istanbul.
Commenting on the AKP’s demand that elections in Istanbul be redone, Bahçeli said: “Redoing an election is a necessity of democracy. Instead of a social chaos, it is better to go to the ballot boxes once again and the nation feels peaceful.”
Ankara Anatolia news agency (11.04.19 https://www.aa.com.tr/en/politics/election-council-announces-do-over-polls-in-ne-turkey/1448422) reports that Turkey's Supreme Election Council (YSK) on Wednesday announced do-over elections in Yusufeli district of northeastern Artvin province on June 2.
In the local elections held on March 31, ruling Justice and Development (AK) Party candidate Eyup Aytekin won the race by three votes, followed by main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) candidate Baris Demirci, according to unofficial results. CHP had challenged the results of the polls.
In addition, AA also reports (11.04.10 https://www.aa.com.tr/en/politics/parties-challenge-local-polls-in-25-provinces-of-turkey/1448368) that political parties that have participated in March 31 local elections in Turkey challenged election results in 25 provinces by the end of the objection process on Wednesday.
Parties and four independent candidates have contested the decisions given by Provincial Electoral Councils and decided to pursue their legal rights with the Supreme Election Council (YSK).
While the ruling Justice and Development (AK) Party has challenged results in 9 provinces -- including metropolitan cities Istanbul and Izmir -- main opposition People's Republican Party (CHP) challenged results in five, opposition Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) in six, Good (IYI) Party in four, Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP) in five and Democrat Party (DP) in one province.
The AK Party said that there were many irregularities as many votes were not registered in the system of the YSK, while the votes registered later were written in different sections, or the sections were left empty.
Turkish daily Sabah (11.04.19 https://www.dailysabah.com/diplomacy/2019/04/10/fm-cavusoglu-visits-the-netherlands-to-discuss-bilateral-ties) reports that Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu began his two-day visit to the Netherlands Wednesday upon the invitation of his Dutch counterpart, Stef Blok, to participate in the seventh meeting of the Turkish-Dutch Bilateral (Wittenburg) Conference and to hold bilateral talks.
According to a statement from the Foreign Ministry, six working groups will convene Thursday with the participation and contribution from relevant ministries within the framework of the Seventh Wittenburg Conference, they include: the Fight against Terrorism, Regional Developments, Turkey-EU, Turkish-Dutch Community, Livable Cities and Energy.
In line with the memorandum of understanding (MoU) signed in March 2008 aimed at ensuring the enhancement of Turkish-Dutch bilateral relations and the cooperation between Turkey and the Netherlands, the Wittenburg Conferences are alternately organized under the co-chairmanship of the Foreign Ministers. The sixth and last meeting of the conferences took place in Ankara on Feb. 14, 2014.
During the talks, Çavuşoğlu and Blok are expected to exchange views on Turkey-EU relations and regional and international developments, as well as issues pertaining to bilateral relations, the statement read.
Furthermore, Çavuşoğlu is expected to inaugurate the Turkish Consulate General in Amsterdam, meet with Turkish and Dutch business circles and come together with the representatives of the Turkish community in the Netherlands.
Currently, the relations between the Netherlands and Turkey are on a positive track, leaving behind a period of strained ties. On July 20, Turkey and the Netherlands decided to normalize bilateral relations and restore full formal diplomatic ties. The countries reappointed their ambassadors as well. As diplomatic ties have recovered, economic ties are expected to be strengthened. The Netherlands is the number one direct investor in Turkey.
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