A. Turkish Cypriot Press
B. Turkish Press
Turkish Cypriot daily Volkan newspaper (06.06.18) reports that Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci met with Maarten Verwey, Director-General and Head of the Structural Reform Support Service in the European Commission and his accompanied delegation.
According to a press release issued by the so-called presidency, Akinci and Verwey discussed during the meeting the Turkish Cypriot community’ ties with the EU and the current phase of the Cyprus problem.
The meeting lasted for approximately one hour.
Turkish Cypriot daily Vatan newspaper (06.06.18) reports that Turkey's first drilling vessel, which was named after Istanbul's conqueror Ottoman Sultan Fatih Sultan Mehmet, and sailed off to the Mediterranean to start the country's first deep-sea drilling operations, arrived in Antalya.
According to the paper, the vessel will start drilling on the end of summer.
Turkish Cypriot daily Havadis newspaper (06.06.18) reports that according to data provided by the “state planning organization” in the occupied area of Cyprus during the first four months of 2018 the number of passengers who had “visited” the “TRNC” has been increased comparing with the same period of last year, however, this increase does not reflect on tourism.
According to the same data, the hotel occupancy during the above mentioned period has reached 44.8% while during the first four months of the previous year it was 46.1%.
Also, according to the data totally 561, 571 passengers had “visited” the “TRNC” via the air and the sea and only 246, 581 out of them overnighted. During the same period, the occupancy at the hotels with casino was 54.6% while at the hotel with no casino was 50.5%.
Also, a remarkable decrease has been showed on the number of tourists from the UK. According to the data, the number of tourists from the UK who “visited the TRNC” in 2014 was 57, 888, 56,250 in 2015, 53, 058 in 2016, 45, 146 in 2017, while from January-April of 2018 these has reached 8, 588.
Turkish Cypriot daily Halkin Sesi newspaper (06.06.18) reports that the “minister of education” Cemal Ozyigit stated that steps will be taken in order for the problems faced in education to be solved.
He said that in this framework their first priority is the construction of three schools in occupied Keryneia.
He also stated that as from the new school year the religion class will be selective for high school students.
Turkish daily Posta newspaper (05.06.18 http://www.posta.com.tr/mhpnin-24-haziran-reklam-filmi-rumlari-cildirtacak-2009269 ) broadcast that at the advertise spot prepared for the June 24th presidential election campaign with the title “Value for everything for our country”, the Nationalist Action Party (MHP) of Devlet Bahceli shows the whole of Cyprus as part of Turkey.
Reporting on the issue, the paper notes that the spot, which was shared at social media “will drive crazy the Greek Cypriots”.
Turkey’s Foreign Ministry has reacted harshly to the fact that the last four Turkish coup plotters of eight who fled to Greece after a 2016 coup attempt in Turkey were released after their 18 months of maximum detention expired.
Hami Aksoy, spokesman of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (http://www.mfa.gov.tr/sc_-43_-yunanistana-kacan-sekiz-darbecinin-hepsinin-serbest-birakilmasi-hk-sc_en.en.mfa), in response to a question regarding the release of all of the eight fugitive putschists who had fled to Greece, stated the following:
“We have expressed our condemnation of Greece’s repeated refusal to extradite the eight fugitives who had taken part in the treacherous coup attempt of July 15 and had then fled to Greece, as well as the release of, and the granting of asylum by the Greek Council of State to, one of these traitors. We have also expressed our expectation from the Greek judiciary not to repeat the same mistakes by taking similar biased decisions in the future.
However, it has been learned that Greece has released the other seven remaining fugitives over the past few days. The release of all the fugitive putschists cannot be explained as a routine administrative decision pertaining to their detention period.
With this decision, the putschists will be able to move freely in Greece. Hence, Greece has clearly exposed itself as a country that provides safe haven to putschists.
The release of the traitors who plotted a coup in order to overthrow the democracy in a neighbouring country by a country, which claims to be the cradle of the democracy, conforms neither to international law, nor to good neighbourly relations.
We remain determined to ensure that the fugitive putschists are extradited to and stand trial in Turkey.”
According to Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (05.06.18, http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/turkish-president-erdogan-claims-foreigners-are-playing-games-through-currency-132825), President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has once again claimed that dark foreign powers are trying to “manipulate” the Turkish economy by “playing on currencies,” vowing to “settle the score” with them after the June 24 snap elections.
“Turkey’s economy, in all areas, is now far beyond developed countries”, Erdogan said at a rally in the province of Sakarya on June 5.
The volume of the country’s exports was $36 billion in 2002 when the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) first came to the power but it has now reached $162 billion, he stated.
“We have made Turkey a country that has a growth rate of 5.7%”, Erdogan said, adding that the Central Bank’s foreign exchange reserves amounted to $27.5 billion when the AKP came to office but these are now $110 billion. “We have had a fall recently and we need to move it forward again,” the President said.
Erdoğan slammed Muharrem İnce, the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) candidate for the presidential elections, as well as CHP head Kemal Kilicdaroglu for “lacking knowledge on the economy”. He also blasted İnce, who recently objected to Second Army Command Commander Lt. Gen. Ismail Metin Temel’s applauding of Erdoğan at an election event while wearing his military uniform. (…)
Meanwhile, Erdogan criticized İnce over his visit to Selahattin Demirtas, the jailed candidate of the Kurdish issue-focused Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP), last month. (…)
“One who killed 53 of my citizens is a presidential candidate in this country. This Muharrem is also visiting him ... A terrorist cannot be President. My Kurdish brothers will break this game,” he said.
According to Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (05.06.18, http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/ypg-to-be-disarmed-as-it-leaves-manbij-turkish-fm-132807), Turkey is working with the United States, Iraq, and the Iraqi Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) in its fight to eliminate the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) in northern Iraq, Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu has said, stressing the necessity of “joint action” against the group.
“There will be a four-way cooperation between Turkey, the U.S., Baghdad and Arbil [in the fight against the PKK]. Because the PKK is also the enemy of Arbil,” Cavusoglu told Ankara bureau chiefs of media outlets at a press conference in Antalya on June 5, referring to the KRG capital. (…)
An operation against the PKK in northern Iraq requires intelligence-sharing between these four actors and political coordination, he added, stressing that “necessary works are ongoing to this end. We are conducting operations against the terrorist organization.”
Turkey and the U.S. have recently established a working group solely to focus on the fight against the PKK in Iraq, while Ankara has also launched talks with both Baghdad and Arbil on the same matter.
“We are determined to clear the PKK from our borders. In addition to this four-way agreement, support from inside Iraq is also key because at the end of the day this is Iraqi soil. [The PKK] has left the Sinjar [province of Iraq] but it still has a sizeable presence in the Kandil Mountains [of northern Iraq] and beyond. We will clear all these areas,” Cavusoglu said.
His statements come as the Turkish Armed Forces have stepped up activities in northern Iraq in recent months. President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has repeatedly vowed that the PKK’s presence in northern Iraq will be eliminated.
Çavuşoğlu also spoke about the “road map” that Turkey and the U.S. have reportedly endorsed on the withdrawal of the PKK’s Syrian offshoot, the People’s Protection Units (YPG), from Manbij, an issue that has caused tension between the two allies since 2016.
He said the road map includes three stages, with the first 10 days devoted to initial preparations between the militaries and intelligence agencies of the two sides for the withdrawal of the YPG troops and actions to be taken by the two sides in Manbij. In the second stage, teams from both sides will hold meetings to conclude preparations. In the third stage the implementation of the road map will be carried out.
Cavusoglu said YPG militants will leave the city after they drop their weapons and Turkish and American troops will provide the control of the province in accordance with the road map. “The weapons that were given to the YPG by the U.S. will be taken back,” he said, adding that the entire process will be concluded within six months.
“In the third stage, we will also decide who will govern this place and who will take their place in security teams. This will lead to stability in Manbij. We will implement the same model to other YPG-held areas if we are successful. This is cited in our road map. Both sides have this determination,” he said, stressing that the road map is endorsed by the two foreign ministers and “not an agreement or a protocol.”
“This goes beyond an international agreement. It is a road map, the implementation of which will have an impact on our bilateral ties. As it has been endorsed, we can say there is a positive trend but obviously we must see its implementation,” Cavusoglu said. (…)
Cavusoglu emphasized that “no third country will play a role” in the withdrawal of the YPG from Manbij, while adding that Ankara’s deal with Washington is “in no way an alternative to its cooperation with Moscow in Syria.” “We explain what we are doing here to Russia. This road map is not a secret, it is transparent and its objectives are well-known,” he said.
According to Turkish daily Ankara Anatolia news agency (05.06.18, https://www.aa.com.tr/en/politics/turkish-pm-slams-us-europe-calling-for-kurdish-state/1166428), Americans and Europeans are calling for a "state for the Kurdish people" despite the fact that the Kurds already have a state, which is Turkey, according to the Prime Minister on Tuesday.
Speaking at an election rally in southeastern Hakkari province, Yildirim said: "We have been in this land for a thousand years. We have lived the most difficult days together in the west, in the north and in the south".
He claimed the PKK terrorist group did not have a "Kurd problem", but the Kurdish people have a "PKK problem". "Let's put it right. These [PKK terror group members] are trouble for the Kurds, Turks and all innocent people," Yildirim added.
Under the title “Erdogan leads in all public surveys on June 24 presidential elections”, Turkish pro-government daily Sabah newspaper (05.06.18, https://www.dailysabah.com/elections/2018/06/06/erdogan-leads-in-all-public-surveys-on-june-24-presidential-elections) reports that recent surveys on the presidential election indicated no certainty on whether it will end in the first round or not, even though they all point to President Recep Tayyip Erdogan leading the race. As time draws near for the presidential election scheduled for June 24, research companies have been announcing their predictions based on surveys pointing to different scenarios regarding the election's results. According to a latest survey by ORC Research Center, Erdogan is likely to obtain 53.4% of the votes in the first round of the elections. The survey was conducted between May 28 and June 1 in 37 provinces of Turkey with the participation of 3,410 people. The candidates are required to obtain 51% of the votes to become president.
Erdogan was followed by the Republican People's Party (CHP) presidential candidate, Muharrem İnce with 24% of the votes.
According to ORC estimates, the Good Party's (İP) Meral Aksener would receive 11.5%, the pro-PKK People's Democratic Party's (HDP) Selahattin Demirtas would get 8% and the Felicity Party's (SP) Temel Karamollaoglu would receive 2.1% of the votes. Another survey conducted by Remres Research pointed out that Erdogan may receive the highest percentage of support but there might be a second round of the elections. According to Remres survey, the estimations for the first round left Erdogan with 42.2%, İnce 24.6%, Akşener 16.9%, Demirtas 12.3%, Karamollaoğlu 3.8% and Patriotic Party (VP) candidate Doğu Perinçek with 0.2% of the votes.
On the other hand, A&G Research Company General Manager Adil Gür previously announced that 55-60% of the voters would support Erdogan in the presidential election, stressing that there will not be a second round of voting.
The polls have not indicated with certainty who will come in second in the elections. Remres Research has claimed that if CHP's İnce faces Erdogan in the second round, he may receive 41.9% of the votes; while Erdogan is expected to get 42.2%. The predictions tallied without factoring in the distribution of swing voters. However, when the swing votes are distributed, Erdogan comes as the victor in the second round, with 51.52%. According to the election survey conducted by Gezici Research, Erdogan will receive 46% of the votes, and Akşener will come in second with 25-27%, gaining more votes than CHP'S İnce. (…)
On the same issue, Turkish daily Cumhuriyet newspaper (05.06.18, http://www.cumhuriyet.com.tr/foto/foto_galeri/989607/4/ilk_turda_adaylarin_oy_oranlari_ne_olacak__iste_son_anket.html) published the latest results of the SONAR research company owned by Hakan Bayrakci. The survey was carried out with 3,000 persons in 26 provinces between 29 May-3 June 2018.
According to SONAR’s results, the estimations for the first round left Erdogan with 48.30%, İnce 31.40%, Akşener 9.50%, Demirtas 8.20%, Karamollaoglu 2.10% and Perinçek with 0.5% of the votes.
The survey showed that Muharrem Ince has risen his points 10% within two weeks, which is considered the highest rate of CHP, after Bulent Ecevit in 1997.
According to survey’s results, the Cumhur Ittifaki (People’s Alliance) will receive 49.3%, the Millet Ittifaki (Nation Alliance) 39.5% and HDP 10%.
Within the People’s Alliance, the 42.2% of the votes belong to AKP and the 7.1% to MHP. While in the Nation Alliance, the 28.2% of the votes belong to CHP, the 9.2% to the IYI party and the 2.1% to the Felicity Party.
The survey showed that Erdogan and Ince will be in the second round. According to this, it is estimated that on the second round of the elections on July 8, Erdogan will receive 53.7% and Ince 46.3%.
TURKISH AFFAIRS SECTION
(DPs / AM)