Recent News

Turkish Cypriot and Turkish Media Review-06.07.18

No. 129/18



A. Turkish Cypriot Press

1.KTOS trade union organized a protest to condemn Erdogan’s illegal visit in the occupied area of Cyprus

2. BKP welcomes Lute’s appointment

3. Columnist: “Lute should first meet with Turkish officials and not with Akinci”

4. Reference to the Council of Ministers’ decision on the fuel – NGOs in favor of trade

5. Sucuoglu announced his candidacy for UBP leadership

B. Turkish Press

1. Gov’t to issue last decree law for post-state of emergency period: Turkish PM

2. Turkey condemns Israeli demolition of Bedouin houses

3. Turkey to sell four corvette ships to Pakistan


A. Turkish Cypriot Press


1.KTOS trade union organized a protest to condemn Erdogan’s illegal visit in the occupied area of Cyprus

Turkish Cypriot daily Yeni Duzen newspaper (06.07.18- reports that the Turkish Cypriot teacher’s trade union (KTOS) organized today a protest and a press conference in front of the “assembly” and the “Turkish embassy” in the occupied area of Cyprus in order to protest for Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s illegal visit in the breakaway regime next Monday.

Prior the launching of the press conference, several “members” of the “TMT fighters association”, the “veteran’s association of the Turkish armed forces” and the Nationalist Democracy Party (MDP) gathered in front of the so-called Turkish embassy in the breakaway regime in order to counter-protest against KTOS’ gathering.

According to the paper, during the protest, the “members of the administration board” of KTOS were holding placards writing “First schools and hospitals, and then mosques which are for political purposes”.

Issuing a written statement during the protest, KTOS, inter alia, condemned Erdogan’s forthcoming “visit” to the “TRNC” and the inauguration ceremony for the Hala Sultan mosque which is scheduled to take place in occupied Mia Millia village.

Underlining the anti-democratic conditions in Turkey that became more visible right after the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) and Erdogan came to power, KTOS said in the statement that this dark period in Turkey is extremely worrying for all “people” living in the “northern part” of the island.

“The 33 million dollars mosque which was constructed in the northern part of our island, within the framework of Erdogan’s projects to build mosques in every neighborhood with the aim to spread and raise ‘religious and vindictive generations’ is the best example which proves the pressure put on the Turkish Cypriot community to adopt Sunni Islam (…)”, the statement said, underling the lack of schools and infrastructure in the Turkish Cypriot community. “Our priority is not spreading Sunni Islam but to grow and educate our children with a scientific, secular, democratic way and conscientiously. Instead of spending tremendous amount of money for religious purposes and for building mosques, it is necessary and better to build more schools and hospitals that will contribute to the prosperity of the people. (…). The 33 million dollars which were spend for the construction of this mosque, could be used for building not one but 33 schools and also not one but 3 hospitals like the Famagusta Hospital. If inauguration ceremonies are going to take place in this country, it must be schools that should be inaugurated, hospitals and new roads”.

“We are aware of the reactionary and unprogressive actions which are carried out by the AKP in the norther part of the island. We will continue our struggle in all fields against the efforts exerted to control and administrate this community”, the statement further said.

The paper adds that the United Cyprus Party and several other trade unions in the occupied area of Cyprus supported KTOS’ protest, which ended with no incidents. 



2. BKP welcomes Lute’s appointment

Turkish Cypriot daily Star Kibris newspaper (06.07.18) reports that the general secretary of the United Cyprus Party (BKP) Salih Sonustun in a written statement described as very pleasant development the act of the UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres to assign Jane Holl Lute to contact consultations with all parties involved on the Cyprus problem.

Pointing out how important is all sides to be constructive in this process, Sonustun underlined that the BKP supports the immediate resumption of the negotiation process and demands for the solution to be reached to be in accordance with the UN decisions, the EU principles and the high level agreements.

Sonustun underlined also the importance of Guterres’ proposals which are gathered in all 6 chapters to be discussed all at once.



3. Columnist: “Lute should first meet with Turkish officials and not with Akinci”

Writing in Turkish Cypriot daily Afrika newspaper (06.07.18), columnist Mehmet Levent refers to the appointment of the US diplomat Jane Holl Lute by the UNSG to take some soundings as to where the sides stand regarding the negotiations for reaching a solution to the Cyprus problem and her upcoming visit to Cyprus. Under the title “May it be easy Mrs Lute”, Levent reports that Lute will try to find out whether the sides are certain that the conditions have been matured enough for “a meaningful process” and notes the following:

“[…] If you ask me, Lute’s meeting with Akinci is nothing but a waste of time, because Akinci is not the competent authority which will be decisive on the issue of whether the conditions have been matured enough, it is Erdogan and the government he will announce after his oath taking ceremony on 9 July. Therefore, I think that Lute’s meeting with Turkish officials before meeting with Akinci could give a more sound view on the issue of how much the conditions have matured for a new and meaningful process. Because the condition that the key of the solution is in Turkey is still valid. As well as the condition for the continuation of the guarantees. And the condition for the army. And the condition of the territory. And the condition of the population. And the condition of the free movement and settlement for the 80 million [Turks]. There is no sign that Turkey changed significantly on these conditions after Crans Montana. Only one change is seen there. The approval and registration of Erdogan’s one man rule. How can Akinci now how this will be reflected on the new process for the commencement of which efforts are being exerted? Finding this out from the source itself could save some time for Lute. […]”



4. Reference to the Council of Ministers’ decision on the fuel – NGOs in favor of trade 

The Turkish Cypriot newspapers today (06.07.18) refer to the decision announced yesterday by the Council of Ministers of the Republic of Cyprus regarding the purchase of fuels from the occupied area of the Republic of Cyprus. Some indicative titles are the following:

Gunes: “The practice regarding the purchase of fuel from the TRNC was clarified”

Yeni Duzen: “Strict control in the trade of fuel” 

Demokrat Bakis: “The Greek Cypriot administration changed its mind again”

Kibris: “The purchase of fuel by Greek Cypriot commercial cars under the microscope”

Meanwhile, in another report, Kibris publishes statements by Turkish Cypriot organizations, which expressed the belief that the trade relations between the two communities could contribute to finding a solution to the Cyprus problem. Asked by the paper to comment on the obstacles allegedly imposed by the government of the Republic of Cyprus to the purchases of Greek Cypriots from the occupied area of the island during the past few days, representatives of these organizations argued that preventing the Greek Cypriots and the Turkish Cypriots from buying things from the occupied and the government-controlled area of the island respectively does not serve peace.     

Kemal Baykalli, representative of Unite Cyprus Now, said that independent researchers proved that the solution in Cyprus will bring economic benefits to all sides and added that economy is an important means for bringing the two communities close to the solution.

Turgay Deniz, chairman of the Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Commerce, argued that “if we cannot make trade between us, the solution will be a wishful thinking”. Deniz alleged that in spite of the efforts they exert with good will, they receive the reply [by Greek Cypriot businessmen] that [they could cooperate] after the solution of the Cyprus problem. Deniz claimed that this is a clear expression of insincerity and of the fact that we cannot do anything together.

Hurrem Tulga, general coordinator of the chamber of tradesmen and craftsmen, said that they have been working for a long time to develop the relations between the two communities. He noted that trade relations have been developed and expressed the view that joint companies should be established and joint production should start.



5. Sucuoglu announced his candidacy for UBP leadership

Turkish Cypriot daily Halkin Sesi newspaper (06.07.18) reports that Faiz Sucuoglu, “deputy” with the National Unity Party (UBP) announced for his candidacy the party’s leadership.

In statements after announcing his candidacy, Sucuoglu stated that they aim for “power” in order for early elections to take place and the chaos existing in the “country” to come to an end.

The election congress of UBP will take place in October.



B. Turkish Press

1. Gov’t to issue last decree law for post-state of emergency period: Turkish PM

Turkish Hurriyet Daily news (06.07.18 reports that the Turkish government will issue a final decree law on July 6 as precaution for the post-state of emergency period, Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım has said, heralding the end of the state of emergency.

“We will issue a final decree law tomorrow. The last decree law will include necessary regulations in order to avoid weakness in the fight against terrorism in the period when the state of emergency is lifted,” Yıldırım told state-run Anadolu Agency on July 5.

He recalled that the state of emergency will end on July 18, and the government has to submit a motion to the Parliament for its lifting before then. If the government does not initiate the motion, the state of emergency will be lifted naturally on July 18, he added.

President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and his ally, Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) leader Devlet Bahçeli, agreed not to extend the state of emergency, local media reported last week.

Erdoğan and Bahçeli discussed the issue on June 27 during their first face-to-face meeting after the June 24 election in which the “People’s Alliance,” formed by Erdoğan’s Justice and Development Party (AKP) and the MHP, won a parliamentary majority.

Bahçeli and Erdoğan discussed a formula of making amendments in relevant laws for the struggle against terror, such as the anti-terror law and the penal code, so that lifting of the state of emergency will not cause “weakness” in fight against FETÖ and the PKK.

The state of emergency was first imposed on July 20, 2016, five days after a bloody coup attempt in Turkey. It has been extended every three months since then.

Emergency rule was most recently extended with the votes of the AKP and the MHP in Parliament on April 18.

During his campaign for the country’s twin presidential and parliamentary elections, Erdoğan vowed to lift the implementation after the polls.


2. Turkey condemns Israeli demolition of Bedouin houses

Ankara Anatolia news agency (06.07.18 reports that Turkey on Thursday "strongly" condemned the Israeli army’s demolition of the Palestinian Bedouin houses in Abu Nuwar.

In a statement, the Foreign Ministry also condemned "the start of preparations for demolishing in the Bedouin region of Khan Al-Ahmar in the occupied Palestinian territories".

"These acts carried out by the Israeli authorities with impunity jeopardize the contiguous and independent Palestinian State perspective," it said.

The Ministry urged Israel to end "its illegal activities which exacerbate tensions in the region and undermine the two-state solution vision".

Under 1995 Oslo agreement between Israel and Palestine, the West Bank was divided into A, B and C areas. The administrative and security authority of the area A was given to Palestine while the administration of area B was given to Palestine but security to Israel, while in area C areas, both administration and security authority, were to Israel.

The 700-person strong Abu Nuwar Bedouin community, who are in the area C, refused to leave their villages despite continuous threats and pressures from the Israeli authority.


3. Turkey to sell four corvette ships to Pakistan

Turkish Hurriyet Daily news (06.07.18 reports that  Turkey has won a tender to procure four corvettes for the Pakistan Navy, Defense Minister Nurettin Canikli has said.

“A tender opened by the Pakistan Navy to supply four corvettes has just been concluded and Turkey has won the tender,” Canikli told reporters during an official visit to Montenegro on July 5, as quoted by state-run Anadolu Agency.

He described the deal as “the largest defense export of Turkey in one agreement,” while not giving any financial details about the agreement.

Turkey signed a memorandum of understanding to produce four corvettes under the MİLGEM project in May 2017 for Pakistan.

Recalling that negotiations had continued for six months, Canikli also said the parties decided to build two of the corvettes in Istanbul Shipyard and other two in Pakistan’s southern port city of Karachi.

The MİLGEM project covers the construction of a number of corvettes (Ada class) and frigates for the Turkish Navy.

Until now, four warships have been commissioned and the fifth one is under construction, according to Turkish officials.

The indigenous “Ada-class” naval corvettes, which are 99.5 meters in length, have been designed to carry out various missions such as surface warfare, anti-submarine warfare, air defense, surveillance and reconnaissance, command-control and asymmetric defense warfare missions.

The first was the TCG Heybeliada (F-511), launched in 2008.

The ships, which are named after the Princes’ Islands off Istanbul, are designed for search and rescue, patrol and anti-submarine warfare duties and are armed with a 76-millimeter gun, missiles and torpedoes.

The corvettes can also accommodate a crew of 93 and a Seahawk helicopter on their flight deck.




(CS / AM)