Turkish Cypriot illegal Bayrak(31.12.19, https://www.brtk.net/?video_post=akincidan-yeni-yil-mesaji-2) broadcasts that Turkish Cypriot leader, Mustafa Akinci has said that with the statement issued by UNSG Antonio Guterres after the tripartite meeting held in Berlin, a common understanding and a much clearer and sound procedure, “which includes the principles on which we stand with sensitivity”, was described.
In his message on the occasion of the New Year, Akinci noted that with very good planning and preparation, very serious developments regarding the solution of the Cyprus problem were possible within 2020, if all sides concerned exhibited a consistent and constructive stance.
Arguing that the overcoming of the “confusion” which had allegedly existed before the Berlin meeting regarding the solution was an “extremely important development”, Akinci said that the results of the Berlin meeting showed that a wise, consistent and determined stance should be exhibited in order for a result to be achieved. He added that due to their [the Turkish Cypriot side’s] consistent and decisive stance, they received a response to their demand for a new process different from the ones of the past, without an open end, well-structured and aiming at a strategic agreement.
Referring to the confidence building measures which were materialized in 2019, Akinci said that 18 areas were demined and added that the target was to totally clean Cyprus of minefields. He noted that they achieved the functioning of the mobile phones in both sides of the island and the permanent connection of the electricity networks. He added that positive steps were also taken within the framework of the bi-communal committees on culture and education.
Akinci said that in parallel to the positive result of the Berlin meeting, the solution of the Cyprus problem has become more urgent and 2020 became a more important year. He also alleged the following:
“The increase of tension because of the insistence of the Greek Cypriot administration to unilaterally exploit the wealth of the hydrocarbons is not a situation which could continue. The armament in the air and our seas is for no one’s benefit in parallel to the serious armament which in any case exists in both sides of the island. It should be understood that the effort to unilaterally possess the energy resources in the Eastern Mediterranean in a manner that causes tension is not fair and benefits nothing else the deterioration of the problems. The developments, which are being experienced today, have made the solution of the Cyprus problem necessary not only for Cyprus but for the area as well. The two communities in Cyprus and the countries of the area must choose the way of ‘winning together’ instead of ‘loosing together’. […]”
According to illegal Bayrak television (30.12.19-https://www.brtk.net/?english_posts=pm-tatar-issued-new-years-message), so-called prime minister Ersin Tatar stated on Monday that the time has come to launch a new struggle in unity so that the Turkish Cypriot people can earn their place within the international community.
“We need to take the necessary steps by refraining from populism in order to develop the TRNC’s economy, Tatar said in his New Year’s message, wishing everyone a happy, healthy and prosperous New Year’s.
Tatar pointed out that another year had gone by without a solution to the Cyprus problem due to the “wrong positions and policies adopted by the Greek Cypriots”.
“The Greek Cypriot side refuses to recognize our political equality. It is pursuing a policy aimed at depriving Turkish Cypriots of their security and land. They continue to adopt a hostile stance against the TRNC, trying to take us back to 1974 and to remove Turkey from Cyprus”, Tatar claimed.
Alleging that remarks made by the Greek Cypriot leader Nicos Anastasiades and the other Greek Cypriot political parties over the past year have demonstrated that it is almost impossible to reach a settlement in Cyprus which safeguards the political equality and security of the Turkish Cypriot people, Tatar claimed further the following: “I am well aware that the Turkish Cypriot public is fed up with endless and fruitless negotiations. That is why we are demanding that the Cyprus problem be concluded,” Tatar said, arguing that it was the government’s desire to solve the Cyprus Problem without excluding any alternative solution models.
He went on to claim it was out of the question for Turkish Cypriots to abandon their current security, their rights, sovereignty, Turkey’s active and effective guarantees and statehood just for the sake of reaching a settlement with the Greek Cypriots.
Highlighting the need for solidarity to achieve new goals both domestically and in terms of foreign policy, Tatar said that it was important to foil the Greek Cypriot side’s plans to usurp the rights of Turkish Cypriots. “We shall do this with the decisions and steps to be taken in cooperation with Turkey,” he added.
Touching upon his “government’s accomplishments”, he said that the National Unity Party (UBP)-Peoples’ Party (HP) had succeeded in closing the “budget deficit” by 50%.
He claimed that preparations on steps to be taken on health, education, energy, transportation, tourism, communication and other sectors of the economy have been completed.
Turkish Cypriot daily Hakikat (31.12.19) reports that the so-called foreign minister Kudret Ozersay in exclusive statements to Hakikat Web TV claimed that there are two states in Cyprus for the time being.
He claimed that if the two “states” co-operate together in 4-5 issues and they get results out of this co-operation, then a climate of trust will be created, which as he said, does not exist now.
He went on adding that at this point efforts are exerted for the “two states” to “agree overnight onn subjects that have remained unsolved for the last 51 years that the negotiations are taking place”. “Perhaps agreements can be made in issues like extradition of criminals, natural gas and international terrorism”, he said adding that for the time being there are no condition for establishing a federal co-operation. “We all got a very clear message about this with the 2004 referendum”, he said.
Ozersay also alleged that the UN Report is stated that the “Greek Cypriot Administration” as he referred to the Republic of Cyprus, is not ready to share the wealth and the power. “Therefore we also do not have to fight for such a co-operation. We have hopes to reach a solution through dialogue and co-operation”, he stated.
Ozersay said that he has not decided yet if he will be a candidate for the “presidential elections”.
Turkish Cypriot daily Yeni Düzen (31.12.19) reports that Turkish Minister of Interior Suleyman Soylu has stated that illegal betting mafia is operating in the occupied area of Cyprus.
Responding to questions by CNN-Türk channel in Turkey, Soylu, stated, inter alia, that illegal betting has taken dimensions costing 50 billion TL. “This lifts the concept of family, the concept of trade and the concept of marriage. I consider that the current year was a successful year for us. Especially in Cyprus, there is mafia. We have taken important steps towards this issue. 2020 will be a year that we will evaluate better the data we have in our hands”, Soylu said.
On the same issue, Turkish Cypriot daily Diyalog (31.12.19) reports that an “official” has stated on this issue that the “the unit for financial crimes of the police” is closely monitoring the phenomenon of illegal betting. The “official” added that some of the efforts exerted so far had yield a result, pointing out, that the prosecution of the illegal betting operation of the Turkish Cypriot businessman Bulut Akacan was among these results.
Under the title “There is block, but there is no problem”, Turkish Cypriot daily newspaper Kibris (31.12.19), on its front page, reports that the amount of 750 million TL that Turkey had allotted for the economy in the occupied area of Cyprus as an advance payment has been transferred minus 93 million TL.
According to the article, the 530 million TL from the 657 million TL advance payment were paid for defence, while the 100 million TL from the remaining 127 million TL have been blocked and the “government” could not use it. Therefore, only 27 million TL have remained for investments.
The paper further reports that this has caused concern.
In statements to illegal Bayrak, Ersin Tatar, self-styled prime minister, claimed that the blocked money have not created a crisis with Turkey, adding that they have used the 650 million TL from the source of 750 million TL and that they can use the rest of 90 million TL as soon as the approval is received. He also noted that it was not a big deal.
On the same issue, Olgun Amcaoglu, speaking to the paper, confirmed that the amount that Turkey has transferred was less, adding that there is no need to worry.
Meanwhile, Turkish Cypriot daily newspaper Halkin Sesi (31.12.19), on its front page, reports that “Tatar’s government” has made one last attempt during their recent meetings in Ankara to request from Turkey to unblock the financial source which are in Ziraat Bank. According to the paper, no progress has been made and the “government” is in big trouble.
It is also reported that Tatar, in statements to Turkish Cypriot news portal Haber Kibris, said that the salaries in the “public sector” will be paid but they will not be able to fulfil their responsibilities on the real sector and investments. He further noted that during the meeting with the Turkish Deputy President Fuat Oktay in Ankara on December 18, they were promised that the money would be unblocked and they expect that this promise will be kept. He concluded by saying that the “finance minister” Amcaoglu continues his efforts on this matter.
Turkish Cypriot daily Havadis (31.12.19) reports that a last minute agreement was made at the last meeting of the “council of ministers” between the “government coalition partners” on the so-called “development plan” for Trikomo-Agios Sergios and Famagusta.
Speaking after the meeting, the so-called minister of initerior Aysegul Baybras stated that the plan will contribute towards the planning of various projects in the breakaway regime, raising the standard of living for people and protecting the environment, natural resources and sustainable economic development.
According to the official website of the Turkish Presidency (31.12.19-https://www.tccb.gov.tr/en/news/542/114146/-today-s-turkey-looks-to-the-future-with-much-greater-hope-and-confidence-), Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in his New Year message, wished peace and health to the whole humanity in 2020, and said: “Today’s Turkey looks to the future with much greater hope and confidence than did yesterday’s Turkey. Those, who used to threaten Turkey with chaos, terror, putsch, crisis and instability, are now confessing despair in the face of our steps and are seeking reconciliation. As I always say, our greatest strength is our unity and solidarity”.
“Leaving behind the year 2019, during which we witnessed events of historic importance, we are about to enter 2020, when we will hopefully experience much more favorable developments together. I pray to my Lord that the year 2020 may lead to auspicious developments for our country, nation, friends and the entire humanity.
As had been the case with previous years, we pursued a very busy agenda in 2019, too, both at home and abroad, implementing very important and fruitful works and services.
At home, we paid a total of 88 visits to the 58 provinces of ours, visiting some of them more than once. Outside the country, we paid 19 visits to 14 countries on behalf of Turkey. Besides them, we attended a large number of events and had lots of meetings and talks in Ankara and Istanbul.
We implemented for the use of our people many investments and services, each of which is a milestone in our country’s development journey. We keep working day and night in order to bring our country closer to the goal of great and powerful Turkey.
With the elections on March 31, we elected the mayors, municipal council members, provincial assembly members and mukhtars that will administer our cities for the next 5 years. I once again wish for the election results to yield favorable outcomes. Therefore, Turkey entered an uninterrupted period of action until the next presidential and parliamentary elections in June of 2023.
My speech and our talks at the United Nations General Assembly in September showed, once again, Turkey’s humanitarian stance and constructive policies to the entire world.
Moreover, Operation Peace Spring, which we launched on October 9, effectively demonstrated our determination as regards Turkey’s security and the war on terror. As you know, we had conducted Operation Euphrates Shield in the Jarabulus-Al Bab area in August 2016 and Operation Olive Branch in the Afrin region in January 2018. As a result, we had cleared DAESH and PKK/YPG terrorists from an area of 4 thousand square kilometers and had enabled the return home of 370 thousand Syrian refugees. With Operation Peace Spring, we cleared terrorists from another area of nearly 4,300 square kilometers between Ras al-Ayn and Tell Abyad.
The Memorandum of Understanding on Security and Military Cooperation and the Memorandum of Understanding on Delimitation of the Maritime Jurisdiction Areas” between Turkey and Libya brought about gains of great strategic importance for our country. These two memoranda have expanded and enhanced much further the process we had initiated via an agreement with the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC). The projects aimed at entirely excluding Turkey from the Mediterranean have thus been wholly thwarted with our recent steps. The full implementation of these agreements will be facilitated by the support we will lend to the legitimate Tripoli Government in Libya.
(…)Today’s Turkey looks to the future with much greater hope and confidence than did yesterday’s Turkey. Those, who used to threaten Turkey with chaos, terror, putsch, crisis and instability, are now confessing despair in the face of our steps and are seeking reconciliation. As I always say, our greatest strength is our unity and solidarity. That is why we say at every opportunity that we will be ONE, we will be BIG, we will be STRONG, we will be BROTHERS AND SISTERS, and we, all together, will be TURKEY, (…)”.
Meanwhile, Turkish daily Hurrriyet Daily News (31.12.19-http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/deals-with-libya-to-provide-strategic-gains-to-turkey-in-2020-erdogan-150458), reports that Turkey’s Defense Minister Hulusi Akar has also underlined the impending mission for the Turkish troops in Libya through his New Year message.
The memoranda of understanding with Libya have decorated Turkey with important strategic gains for the protection of its rights in the eastern Mediterranean, Akar stressed, underlining that Turkey will never allow fait accompli in this region.“As a guarantor country, we will continue to protect the rights of our Cypriot brothers as we do for our own rights in the framework of international law,” he stressed.
Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (30.12.19-http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/govt-sends-libya-motion-to-parliament-150432) reports that the Turkish government is sending to Parliament on December 30 a motion authorizing the deployment of troops to Libya, according to Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu.
Cavusoglu, after meeting with Turkish opposition leaders to seek support for the legislation, told reporters that the motion would be submitted to Parliament later on Dec. 30.
"As the Foreign Ministry, we presented the mandate to the Presidency for it to be sent to the Parliament. And as of today, we have learned from the President's office that the mandate will be sent to Parliament with the signature of the Honorable President within the day," Cavusoglu said.
Last week Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said the motion would be submitted to Parliament in light of a request by Libya's U.N.-recognized government for military assistance.
Speaking to reporters afterward, Cavusoglu said: "Of course the decision on the motion is up to the Republican People’s Party (CHP). "We told them why we need a resolution, including the threats we face, in terms of our country and its national interests."
Cavusoglu on Dec. 30 met opposition party leaders to brief them on a draft parliamentary motion for possible military deployment in Libya.
Cavusoglu first met with the CHP leader Kemal Kilicdaroglu. “Of course, the decision on the motion is up to CHP. We have told them why we need a resolution, including the threats we face, in terms of our country and the national interests of our country,” Cavusoglu told reporters after the meeting.
He will not be visiting the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP), as it had already voiced its support for the motion in a statement, Cavusoglu added.
Speaking at a press conference after the meeting, Ünal Çeviköz, CHP deputy chair responsible for foreign relations, said his party objects to Turkey’s military involvement in the Libya dispute. Ankara shall prioritize diplomacy rather than military power, he said, stressing that deploying Turkish troops to Libya will be part of a policy of “killing more Muslims.”
“We do not want the situation in Syria to be in Libya. Sending troops to Libya promotes conflict. Turkey should give priority to diplomacy. If the conflict is prolonged, migration from Libya, similar to the one from Syria, may be the case”, he said.
Cavusoglu later visited İyi (Good) Party leader Meral Akşener for the same kind of briefing. Yet, spokesperson of the party Yavuz Ağıralioğlu, announced that his party opposes the motion. “We are negative for dispatching troops. We believe the power of the Republic of Turkey is sufficient to protect our rights in the Mediterranean,” he said on Dec. 29.
Turkey should display its strength in diplomacy but be cautious to “take risky steps to be an element of the civil war in Libya,” he said.
Turkish daily Sabah (30.12.19-https://www.dailysabah.com/economy/2019/12/30/economic-ties-between-turkey-moldova-to-grow-stronger) reports that President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said Monday in a joint news conference with his Moldovan counterpart Igor Dodon that Turkish investment in Moldova is currently over $300 million and although the two countries have had some difficulties regarding bilateral economic relations, mutual investments will grow by overcoming obstacles.
Dodon paid a visit to the Turkish capital Ankara for bilateral meetings with President Erdogan, during which the leaders agreed to boost mutual efforts to improve bilateral economic and trade relations with due consideration to the countries' strategic partnership.
In their joint news conference, Erdogan highlighted that Turkey aims to contribute to Moldovia's development and will help Turkish investors increase their investments in the country. He noted that although the trade volume between the two countries has reached approximately $500 million, it is still behind the target volume of $1 million.
Dodon pointed out that their trade volume has seen a major increase, noting that Moldova ranks seventh among Turkey's trade allies.
He stressed that within the last 20 years, the two countries' bilateral relations have improved significantly. There are currently 72 agreements between the countries in several fields, while they signed an additional four agreements on Monday, he said. The agreements between the countries regard various fields from tourism to the Free Trade Agreement that came into force in 2016.
Dodon said that the Turkish investors had made a significant contribution especially to the health sector and infrastructure.
Both leaders highlighted the presence of Gagauz Turks living in Moldova as being a bridge between Chisinau and Ankara.
Dodon said that Turkey has been contributing to the cultural development of the country as well, with over 100 social projects in recent years not only for the Gagauz people but for all citizens of Moldova.
Turkish daily Sabah (30.12.19-https://www.dailysabah.com/politics/2019/12/30/erdogan-to-start-new-year-with-busy-diplomatic-schedule) reports that busy diplomacy traffic awaits President Recep Tayyip Erdogan in the New Year as he is expected to kick off January with a meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin followed by a meeting with German Chancellor Angela Merkel.
Erdogan is expected to attend the inauguration ceremony of TurkStream in Istanbul alongside with Putin on Jan. 8. Following the inauguration ceremony, the two leaders are expected to have bilateral meetings as well as meetings between Turkish and Russian delegations. The main topics that are expected to be discussed during these meetings are regional developments, particularly issues in Syria and Libya, alongside issues regarding defense, energy, tourism and other economic sectors.
(…)At the end of January, Erdogan is expected to pay a visit to Germany to attend a political meeting over the Libyan crisis. Yet, the meeting with Merkel is expected to be in Ankara upon a visit by the German chancellor. In the meeting, Turkish and German leaders are expected to have an agenda focused on developments in Syria and Libya, and Turkey's EU membership process as well as the refugee crisis and security problems.
(…)Erdogan is also expected to pay a series of diplomatic visits to the African continent. Known for launching an African initiative in Turkish diplomacy, Erdogan is expected to go to Morocco, the Gambia and Senegal. The main point of the Africa trip is expected to be the enhancement of the economic relations with the continent's countries as well as the fight against the Gülenist Terror Group (FETÖ).
(…)Africa, however, is not the only place that the president is expected to visit as the month of February will be the scene for diplomatic trips to Pakistan and Indonesia as well. Erdogan is expected to have High-Level Strategic Cooperation Council meetings in both countries.
2019 was one of the busiest years for the President so far, as he made several domestic and foreign visits while hosting various world leaders. A total of 19 foreign diplomatic visits took place this year; the first of which was to Russia and the last to Tunisia. Erdogan went to Russia five times in 2019 and visited the U.S. twice. Some of the other countries visited by Erdogan were Japan, Serbia, Hungary, Qatar, the U.K. and Malaysia.
Turkish daily Sabah (30.12.19-https://www.dailysabah.com/defense/2019/12/30/turkish-defense-giant-tai-to-deliver-new-uav-aksungur-in-january) reports that Turkish Aerospace Industries' (TAI) new unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) Aksungur will be delivered to Turkish security forces within the first month of 2020, according to its CEO.
TAI CEO Temel Kotil said Sunday in a statement to Anadolu Agency (AA) they expect Aksungur 180-kph UAVs to garner high interest from buyers.
Aksungur has a 750-kilogram carrying capacity, a sharp upgrade from the 200-kilogram capacity of the earlier model, Anka. It was developed based on the existing technology from the TAI's first UAV Anka and is the manufacturer's largest drone with payload capacity for mission-specific equipment. Aksungur is intended to be used for long-term surveillance, signals intelligence and maritime patrol missions. TAI plans to integrate weapon packages and put the Aksungur into production by early 2020.
The aircraft has a mission endurance window of around 24 hours and will be able to fly to 40,000 feet.
The armed forces ar.e expected to use Aksungur in intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance (ISR) missions. (…)
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