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Turkish Cypriot and Turkish Media Review-14-16.07.18

 

No. 135/18                                                                                                          

 Contents

 A. Turkish Cypriot Press

1. Ozersay:  “UNFICYP serves the preservation of status quo”

2. Turkish Ambassador to Rome warned that they will act in the same way as they did with ENI’s ship SAIPEM 12000

3.  Kanbay argues that FETO members act in the occupied area of Cyprus

4. Erhurman argues that “the government tries to minimize the impact of the loss in the value of the TL”

5. Data on the “halloumi exports” of the occupation regime

6. The “casino operator’s union” calls on the so-called government to make “legal arrangements” to the “casino law”

7. Figures on the “construction sector” in the occupied area of Cyprus

 

B. Turkish Press

1. Erdogan vows to finish off every single FETO terrorist cell

2. Erdogan issued new presidential decrees

3. Data on the number of people arrested and convicted over FETO charges

4. Turkish Airlines to make first flights from Istanbul new airport to “TRNC”, Azerbaijan

 

A. Turkish Cypriot Press

 

1. Ozersay:  “UNFICYP serves the preservation of status quo”

According to illegal Bayrak television (16.07.18- http://www.brtk.net/?english_posts=ozersay-unficyp-serves-preservation-of-status-quo), so-called deputy prime minister and “minister of foreign affairs”, Kudret Ozersay, evaluated in his social media account the efforts to extend the mandate of the United Nations Peacekeeping Forces in Cyprus (UNFICYP), claiming that this attempt is an efforts for the continuation of the status quo.

In a post on social media, Ozersay claimed that the Greek Cypriot side is distorting the realities on the island in an attempt to ensure the continuation of UNFICYP’s presence on the island. Referring to the latest statement by the Republic of Cyprus government Spokesman who said that the UN troops should remain stationed as long as there were Turkish troops on the island, Ozersay reminded that UN Peacekeeping troops were stationed on the island in 1964 when there were no Turkish troops on the island.

Ozersay alleged that the UN troops had failed to prevent in anyway the violence that took place between 1963-1974. “Moreover, the UN had stood and just watched the fascist Greek coup take place 44 years ago. There is nothing more meaningless than to try to assign UNFICYP the mission of protecting Greek Cypriots from Turkish troops”, Ozersay alleged.  

Claiming that UNFICYP was in some form of collaboration with the Greek Cypriot side, Ozersay alleged that the reason for this is that they didn’t want the status quo to change. “Over the past 54 years UNFICYP has come to a point where they represent the status-quo. Its task, which was defined in 1964, is largely obsolete today given the current circumstances. Some important actors of the UN are not too keen on renewing UNFICYP’s mandate this time. In particular, they do not want to spend that much money for those tasks that are fulfilled. The NGOs, politicians and military officials of the two sides can also meet without the military power acting as the postman carrying letters between the two sides. I don’t think the UN should be there for that” he posted.

Ozersay argued that the reason for arguments made up to justify UNFICYP’s presence on the island in the latest draft report on UNFICYP, is to please the Greek Cypriot side by taking into account its expectations. “We should take a look at the debate that took place at NATO last week about “who will contribute to military expenditures and how much” to be able to understand why the Greek Cypriots are so worried about this issue. Moreover, it is important to note that some important actors of the UN want to review peace keeping missions, cut down on unnecessary expenditures and end unnecessary military operations, If the mandate of UNFICYP is not extended or its tasks and structure are revised significantly, the Greek Cypriot side will not be able to sustain as it is the fundamental rhetoric of the status-quo that it has been happy to maintain for half a century”, Ozersay claimed further, adding: “It is exactly the same reason why the Greek Cypriot administration is so frustrated about that the latest glossary, the use of which was recommended to the journalists” Ozersay said.

 

2. Turkish Ambassador to Rome warned that they will act in the same way as they did with ENI’s ship SAIPEM 12000

According to illegal Bayrak television (14.07.18, http://www.brtk.net/?english_posts=esenli-says-gca-reason-for-problems), the Turkish Ambassador to Rome Murat Salim Esenli has claimed that both the Cyprus problem and problems related to hydrocarbon exploration in the Eastern Mediterranean remained unresolved due to the “Greek Cypriot Administration’s” reluctance to reach an agreement despite Turkey’s and “TRNC’s” constructive proposals and stance.

Ambassador Esenli’s words came in response to a question from the Italian press in Rome regarding the crisis experienced by Saipem 12000 which operates on behalf of the Italian Energy Company ENI. He argued: “The Greek Cypriot administration has been reluctant towards reaching an agreement not only because it is recognized by the international community but also because it was allowed to join the EU on its own in 2014. Moreover the Greek Cypriot side has dragged international companies into the dispute in an attempt to strengthen its hand against Turkey and the Turkish Cypriots, signing unilateral agreements in the process. We warned our friends and partners against these unilateral agreements. This issue goes back all the way to 2006”.

Esenli further alleged that tensions had risen after the “Greek Cypriot administration” and involved parties ignored the Turkish side’s warnings, and argued: “Coming to the issue of SAIPEM 12000. This is an incident which emerged after our warnings were ignored. It is my hope that Italy will continue the support has shown for a settlement in Cyprus. If this problem is solved, the hydrocarbons around the island will benefit everyone, not only the Turkish Cypriots and Greek Cypriots but Europe in general. In the end, the steps we have taken are not aimed at Italy. However, should the companies of other countries attempt to proceed in the same manner we shall show the same reaction”.

 

3.  Kanbay argues that FETO members act in the occupied area of Cyprus

Under the title “FETO’s extension is in the TRNC”, Turkish Cypriot daily Halkin Sesi newspaper (14.07.18) reported that Derya Kanbay, illegal Turkish Ambassador to the occupied part of Nicosia, in a press conference on the occasion of the second anniversary of the 2016 defeated coup in Turkey, urged people to be careful about dangerous organizations like FETO.

Stressing that they saw that elements of FETO are not only in the military and police organization, but also in public and civil sectors in the “TRNC”, Kanbay added that according to investigations conducted before and after the coup attempt on July 15, they saw that there are elements of FETO in the public and civil sectors in the “TRNC”. However, he explained that the term of “terrorist offence” is not included in the “TRNC’s legal and judicial system”, and in case of arresting a “TRNC citizen” as a member of a terrorist organization cannot be prosecuted or be sent to Turkey.  Kanbay added that they asked (the authorities of the breakaway regime) to fill up this deficiency, but no serious attempt regarding this issue has been made yet.

(DPs)

 

4. Erhurman argues that “the government tries to minimize the impact of the loss in the value of the TL”

According to illegal Bayrak television (16.07.18, http://www.brtk.net/?english_posts=pm-erhurman-holds-press-conference), Tufan Erhurman, self-styled prime minister, in a press conference today evaluating the latest economic and political developments in the occupied area of Cyprus, refuted claims that “the coalition government, which completed 5 months in office, was in trouble”. He added that speculations that there were serious disagreements between the coalition partners did not reflect the truth.

Erhurman also denied the rumours that there were secret backdoor talks being held between some of the coalition parties and other parties, adding that this was absolutely not true and out of the question.

Regarding the economy, Erhurman said that “the biggest challenge faced by the coalition government was the sharp drop in the value of the Turkish Lira against foreign currencies”. He said that “the government had taken a number of measures” but added that “there was so much it could do taking into account the country’s dependency on imports”. “Our goal is to reduce and minimize the impact of this loss on consumers and citizens” he added.

Erhurman, who listed the measures introduced by the “government”, defended the “government’s” limited ability to minimize the impact of the loss in the value of the Turkish Lira. He nevertheless added that these measures were in place and had to some degree succeeded in lowering the impact.

“The rising cost of living which was envisaged as 5.2% at the beginning of the year when preparing the budget has now risen by 12.11%. This is a heavy and extra burden on the budget, an additional 120 million TL burden” he added.

He also explained that a meeting will also take place with real sector representatives this week as part of ongoing efforts to face the economic challenges in the “country”. He further argued that “the coalition government remained committed to continue working together to solve the country’s problems”.

5. Data on the “halloumi exports” of the occupation regime

Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris newspaper (16.07.18) under the front-page title: “Our hellim/halloumi is cheap but our exports are not sufficient enough”, reports that even though the selling price of the halloumi that the “TRNC” “exports” is 17 TL per kg and it is much more cheaper than the selling price of the halloumi that the Greek Cypriot price exports abroad (45 TL per kg), “south” Cyprus, as the paper describes the Republic of Cyprus holds the biggest market share abroad.

According to information acquired by the “livestock breeding and farmer’s union”, the price of the halloumi which is exported from the “northern part” of the island to the Arab countries is 4 dollars, while the price of the halloumi exported from the occupation regime to Turkey is between 16-17 TL. In the contrary, the price of the halloumi exported from the “southern part” of the island is 45TL.

Also, according to figures provided by the “shopkeepers and craftsman union”, in 2017 the “TRNC” exported totally  7 million 504 thousand 737kg of halloumi to 10 different countries, which are Turkey, Jordan, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Qatar, USA, Bahrain, United Arab Emirates and Japan. Also, according to the same figures, during the period between 1 January 2018-28 June 2018, the occupation regime “exported” 4 million 107 thousand 206 kg of halloumi to the same countries.

In statements to the paper, the “chairman” of the “Turkish Cypriot chamber of industry” (“KTSO”), Candan Avunduk and the “chairman” of the “livestock breeding and farmer’s union” Mustafa Naimoglulari, underlined the need for “measures” to be taken in order to increase the quality and the production of halloumi in the “TRNC”.

(AK)

6. The “casino operator’s union” calls on the so-called government to make “legal arrangements” to the “casino law”

Turkish Cypriot daily Halkin Sesi newspaper (16.07.18) reports that Ahmet Arkin, “chairman” of the “casino operator’s union” in the occupied area of Cyprus, in statements to the paper, stressed, inter alia, the need for “legal regulations” to be made in the “casino sector” in the “TRNC”, taking into account, as he said that a casino has opened in “south” Cyprus, as he called the Republic of Cyprus, last month.

Explaining that according to the “casino’s regulations” in the “TRNC”, entrance in the casinos is prohibited for the “TRNC citizens”, Arkin wondered how the “government” will prevent the “TRNC citizens” to visit the casinos established in the “south”. He called the so-called government to implement the soonest possible “legal regulations” to the current “law” concerning the operation of the casinos in the “TRNC”. He further claimed that the failure of the “government” to “lift the banned entrance for the TRNC citizens to the casinos”, its failure to produce solutions to the prolonged problem the “casino sector” confronts, its failure to implement sufficient control and supervision, do not serve nothing else but to the encouragement of the “TRNC citizens” to visit the casinos in the “south”.

Arkin claimed further: “Our state in the TRNC does not need prohibitions. What is necessary is a modern control mechanism to be implemented and the TRNC citizens to have free entrance to the casinos in the country”. The “government” should make amendments to the “casino law” in the occupation regime and produce a “policy concerning the casinos”.

(AK)

7. Figures on the “construction sector” in the occupied area of Cyprus

Turkish Cypriot daily Havadis newspaper (15.07.18) under the title: “Construction sector does not recognize obstacles”, reported that according to figures provided by the “Turkish Cypriot building contractors union”, between the years 2013—2017 a license was given for 3, 825 new building projects in the occupied part of Lefkosia, 2,250 in occupied Famagusta, 3,545 in occupied Keryneia, 854 in occupied Trikomo, 486 in occupied Morfou and 341 in occupied Lefka.

According to the same figures, in the last five years a total of 11, 301 new buildings were constructed in the “TRNC”. These projects include residences and working places, apartments, apartment houses, extension buildings, garden walls and other.

According to the statistical figures, 2017 is considered the best period in the construction sectors, since the construction projects reached 2, 779.

(AK)

 

B. Turkish Press

 

1. Erdogan vows to finish off every single FETO terrorist cell

According to Ankara Anatolia news agency (15.07.18, https://www.aa.com.tr/en/todays-headlines/turkey-wont-forget-july-15-defeated-coup-says-erdogan/1204739), Turkey will not forget the night of the defeated coup attempt of July 15, 2016, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Sunday.

“We will not let July 15 be forgotten, we will not forget it”, Erdogan said during a meeting at the presidential complex with the relatives of martyrs and veterans of people who helped beat back the coup. (…)

The President also said that those who try to trivialize the defeated coup are reflecting their “arrogance and hatred towards our country and our nation”.

Erdogan said that much like the PKK and Daesh, the terror group FETO works to harm Turkey’s unity and future. The President also vowed to finish off every single FETO terrorist cell. (…)

Erdogan likened FETO terror group to an “octopus”. Referring to the nationwide fight against the group, he said: “We have cut the octopus’ tentacles. In the last two years, we’ve crumpled all the structures of the organization in the state, business community, bureaucracy, trade, media and civil society on a large scale.”

At the presidential complex, Erdogan also announced that so far this year, the Turkish army has neutralized nearly 1,400 terrorists in operations in both Turkey and northern Iraq.

2. Erdogan issued new presidential decrees 

Under the title “Turkish General Staff put under Defence Ministry”, Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (15.06.18, http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/turkish-general-staff-put-under-defense-ministry-134576), reported that Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on July 15 issued new presidential decrees, making a number of structural changes to important State Councils, Bodies, and Ministries.

Under the decree, the Turkish General Staff will fall under the Defence Ministry. Erdogan told reporters at the time that such a change was an option, stressing it was one of the requirements of the EU from Turkey in the accession process. “We will evaluate this with our friends under the new system. It’s not true to have a dual management. We now have to find a way to this. I am sure we will resolve this,” he stressed.

Relations between Akar and his successor Gen. Yaşar Güler as well as Land Forces Commander Gen. Ümit Dündar are very strong and sincere, Erdoğan said, ruling out any suspicion over their ties. “We got rid of the civilian-military division. Ties between the Defence Ministry and Turkish Armed Forces will be based on solidarity. There will be no division in the decision-making processes.”

The new decree also restructured Turkey’s Supreme Military Council (YSK), which decides on appointments in the military, and the National Security Council (MGK), the top security body that plays an advisory role.

The Council will meet at least once a year as convened by Turkey’s Vice President, who is appointed by the President. The President will convene the Council when necessary, said the decree.

Members of the Council will include Turkey’s Vice President or Vice Presidents, Its Treasury and Finance Minister, and its Education Minister.

The MGK will meet once every two months as summoned by the President, under the decree, and if the President is unable to attend, he or she will be represented by the Vice President.

July 15’s decree also appointed new rectors to six universities in Turkey.

Also under the new decree, three bodies -- the Turkish Cooperation and Coordination Agency (TİKA, Turkey’s development aid agency), the Presidency for Turks Abroad and Related Communities (YTB), and the Foundations Directorate General -- will fall under the Culture and Tourism Ministry.

The Disaster and Emergency Management Agency (AFAD) now falls under the Interior Ministry, according to the decree.

 

3. Data on the number of people arrested and convicted over FETO charges

Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (15.07.18, http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/a-turning-point-for-turkey-july-15-134570), under the title “A turning point for Turkey: July 15”, reported that on the night of the coup, the prosecutors’ offices had already begun working. By the next morning, hundreds of coup attempt probes were already launched. (…) Just on that day, 2,745 judges and prosecutors were dismissed upon an order from the Ankara Chief Prosecutor’s Office over charges of “being members of an armed terror organization,” in other words, FETÖ.

A state of emergency was declared on July 20, 2016. Until this day, the emergency rule has remained uninterrupted --renewed seven times with the latest period officially due to end on July 19.

Over a 100,000 probes on FETÖ were launched until July 10, 2018, Justice Ministry data showed. Some 48,390 cases were launched.

The number of people arrested over FETÖ charges has reached 20,008. The number of people charged with FETÖ links has reached 13,362.

Here is a breakdown of those who stand convicted over FETÖ charges in terms in terms of their professions:

* 705 judges and prosecutors

* 78 members of the Supreme Court

* 26 members of the Council of State

* Two members of the Constitutional Court

* 51 local authorities

* Some 6,954 soldiers

* Some 5,139 law enforcement officials

* Some 116 staff members of the General Directorate of Prisons and Detention Houses

* 6,587 teachers

* 317 lawyers

* 398 doctors

As of July 10 and across Turkey, there were 289 cases on the coup. Some 188 of these cases have been finalized and 101 are continuing.

According to the rulings in those 188 cases, 661 suspects were given aggravated life sentences.

In the same 188 cases, 888 of the suspects were given life sentences. Some 718 of the suspects were given sentences varying from one year and two months to up to 20 years.

“I think these cases will leave the Turkish judicial agenda and be finalized by the end of 2018,” Justice Minister Abdülhamit Gül had said when asked for a deadline, or a date.

With the latest state of emergency decree, some 18,632 public servants were dismissed from their jobs over alleged FETÖ links.

Some 9,000 law enforcement workers and some 6,023 personnel of the Turkish Armed Forces were removed due to the same terror-linked charges.

Overall, the number of public servants, including high-ranking soldiers, bureaucrats, governors and district governors has come up to 125,806 by way of 34 State of Emergency decrees.   

The launching of the State of Emergency Commission has paved way for a legal contradiction process against the dismissals and removals of public servants, including masses of academics, Ministry personnel and soldiers. The commission has begun ordering rulings starting Dec. 22, 2017. (…)

 

4. Turkish Airlines to make first flights from Istanbul new airport to “TRNC”, Azerbaijan

According to Turkish daily Sabah newspaper (14.07.18, https://www.dailysabah.com/tourism/2018/07/14/turkish-airlines-to-make-first-flights-from-istanbul-new-airport-to-turkish-cyprus-azerbaijan), Turkish Airlines will make its first flights from Istanbul's new mega airport to Ankara and the “TRNC” as well as Azerbaijan, the airline's CEO announced on Saturday.

The Turkish flag carrier's process of moving to the new airport will begin on Oct. 31 and last for some 12 hours, Bilal Ekşi told Anadolu Agency, adding that 800 trucks will take part in the giant operation and carry the equipment from Atatürk International Airport. (…)

He added that Turkish Airlines' cargo division Turkish Cargo will establish a new global logistics company in partnership with Chinese logistics firm ZTO and Hong Kong's PAL AIR in September. (…)

President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan's aircraft on June 21 made the first ever landing at Istanbul's new colossal airport, which is expected to formally open to air traffic on Oct. 29, Turkey's Republic Day.

Upon completion, the third airport in the city – 90% of which is already completed -- will be the world's biggest project built from scratch.

The new airport will be one of three biggest in the world, with an annual capacity of 90 million passengers in the first phase. In the second phase, which is expected to be completed in 2023, the number is expected to rise to 150-250 million. (…)

 

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TURKISH AFFAIRS SECTION

(DPs / AM)