A. Turkish Cypriot Press
Β. Turkish Press
According to illegal Bayrak television (02.08.18, http://www.brtk.net/?english_posts=akinci-erhurman-weekly-meeting), Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci and self-styled prime minister Tufan Erhurman held their routine weekly meeting on Thursday morning.
They discussed the UN Secretary General’s temporary adviser to Cyprus Jane Holl Lute’s visit and the developments that took place afterwards and the loss of the Turkish Lira against foreign currency rates after the US President Donald Trump’s statement.
Speaking to the press after the meeting, Erhurman said that they had discussed the developments that had taken place after the UN Secretary General’s temporary adviser to Cyprus Jane Holl Lute’s visit to the island and the expectations that have emerged. “When you look at press reports from South Cyprus you can see that they expect movement to take place on the Cyprus issue after September. We discussed how realistic these expectations are with Akinci. Once we receive notes regarding Turkey’s meeting with Ms. Lute as well, we will then be able to discuss this issue in more detail. It’s too early to make any other evaluations”, Erhurman added.
The second topic that was discussed during the meeting was the loss of value of the Turkish Lira against foreign currencies. Erhurman explained that “it was not possible for the government to take any action that would prevent further loss of the Turkish Lira and added that the loss of the TL was also being felt in the TRNC’s economy”.
He also said that they had requested an appointment with Turkish officials to discuss what steps could be taken.
Turkish Cypriot daily Afrika newspaper (03.08.18) reports that Sener Elcil, the General Secretary of the Turkish Cypriot Primary Teachers Trade Union (KTOS) issued a statement criticizing the Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci for remaining silenced over the attacks against Afrika.
As Elcil stated “Akinci remains silenced against the attacks of Tayyip Erdogan and AKP officials against the Turkish Cypriot community”.
He also accused the “four-party coalition government” of also not issuing a statement of support towards Afrika.
Under the title “Foreign currency’s nightmare does not finish”, Turkish Cypriot daily Halkin Sesi newspaper (03.08.18) reports that the Turkish Lira has dropped to a new record low.
Turkey’s currency was at 5.05 liras against the dollar, falling to a new record low after the US’ sanctions decision.
Turkish Cypriot daily Havadis newspaper (03.08.18), under the title “Financial earthquake”, on its front page, reports that the tension between Turkey and the US has triggered the rapid devaluation of the Turkish lira once again.
Financial experts in the occupied area of Cyprus warned that everyone should be cautious in the parallel rise of foreign currency and inflation, adding that the consumers should not be after luxury goods and to give importance to a budget plan.
Economist Goksel Saydam, speaking to the paper, proposes that “the state should soften the VAT on the necessity goods in order to alleviate the impact of the currency devaluation”.
Economist Okan Veli Safak warned that as the exchange rate increases, the inflation will also increase, adding that they should take measures in order the purchasing power of the low-income families to be increased.
Meanwhile, Turkish Cypriot daily Haberator newspaper (03.08.18) reports that Rifat Gunay, “chairman of the TRNC central bank”, in a press conference yesterday, referring to the increase in exchange rates and interest rates, argued that “the TRNC cannot determine the interest rate and the monetary policy because it uses the other’s country currency due to the monetary union with Turkey”.
Turkish Cypriot daily Kibrisli (03.08.18) reports that the “foreign ministry” stated that it accepts applications from “citizens” who wish to visit the Hala Sultan Mosque in Larnaca on the occasion of the Kurban Bayram (feast of sacrifice).
The visit is to take place on August 28.
According to Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (03.08.18, http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/turkish-american-top-diplomats-meet-first-time-after-sanctions-135362), Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu and United States Secretary of State Mike Pompeo held a key meeting in Singapore just two days after the latter imposed sanctions on its NATO ally, in a sign of the continuation of the diplomatic track between the two countries. (…)
"We have always been for diplomacy, dialogue and mutual understanding. But we also stressed that threatening language and sanctions will not produce any results. Of course, these problems cannot be solved with one meeting but we have agreed to work closely to solve them," Cavusoglu told journalists after the meeting, which he described as "constructive."
Pompeo, on the other hand, said that their decision for sanctions is "a demonstration that [the U.S. is] very serious" about the demand of Brunson's release.
"They spoke about a number of issues, and had a constructive conversation. They agreed to continue to try to resolve the issues between our two countries," U.S. State Department spokesperson Heather Nauert said.
Cavusoglu and Pompeo held three phone conversations in the last few days following the U.S. administration’s measures against Turkey. (…)
The U.S. announced sanctions on Turkey’s Justice and Interior Ministers on the grounds their responsibility for implementing serious human rights violations against imprisoned pastor Andrew Brunson. Turkey said it will retaliate the sanctions in the same way.
According to Turkish daily Sabah newspaper (02.08.108, https://www.dailysabah.com/economy/2018/08/03/erdogan-to-announce-first-100-day-plan-today), President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan is scheduled to announce his government's first 100-day plan that consists of 400 projects at a ceremony to be attended by 2,000 people. Ankara's first 100-day plan by and large focuses on steps to be taken in the economy. The first item of business in the new presidential system is to cut back inflation to single digits, fight against exchange rate pressure and increase domestic savings. The three-stage executive plan, which was among Erdoğan's election promises, will announce 400 projects to be accomplished in the short term. The President will later announce a second 100-day plan and a six-month strategy, including further plans and projects.
Measures to increase domestic savings will be shared with the public in detail. In addition to monetary and fiscal policies, incentives will be provided for households and firms with the aim of expanding domestic savings in accordance with the goal to decrease the current account deficit and sustain growth momentum. The incentives will include practices of financial utilization of citizens' "under-the-mattress" savings.
In due consideration of international obligations, import-intensive luxurious consumer products will be identified, and deterrent tax measures will be implemented. Moreover, public savings will also be intensified and efficient management of public revenues and expenditures will be ensured.
According to Ankara Anatolia news agency (02.08.18, https://www.aa.com.tr/en/politics/turkey-chp-dissidents-submit-signatures-for-congress/1221174), Turkey’s main opposition party on Thursday said a total of 630 delegates have signed for holding of the party’s congress in a bid to replace current party leader Kemal Kilicdaroglu.
Speaking to reporters, Gaye Usluer, a lawmaker of the Republican People's Party (CHP), said that notarized copies of the signatures were submitted to the party leadership. "We want CHP to show political and ideological consistency. We want a new understanding of governance to take effect, and we desire that a cadre movement should start in the Republican People's Party," Usluer said. (…)
According to party bylaws, 50% plus 1 signature from party representatives must be collected for the emergency congress to take place. The CHP has a total of 1,240 delegates, according to Usluer.
However, according to deputy head of the party Muharrem Erkek, the first examinations show that the party dissidents could not reach the required signatures for the extraordinary congress. (…)
The CHP's Change and Hope Congress, which would be held only if collected signatures meet the party's required threshold, is expected to discuss the replacement of Kilicdaroglu by none other than the party’s former presidential candidate, Muharrem Ince.
According to Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (03.08.18, http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/top-court-rejects-jailed-chp-lawmakers-appeal-for-release-135338), the Constitutional Court has rejected an individual application filed by imprisoned main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) lawmaker Enis Berberoglu, ruling that the appeal of the lawmaker based on the ground of a violation of his right to individual freedom and his right to being elected is inadmissible.
The top court rejected Berberoğlu’s application in a decision published on the Official Gazette on Aug. 2, saying the appeal, in which he said his imprisonment was violating his right to personal safety and freedom and his right to be elected, was inadmissible for the court’s assessment.
Berberoğlu was arrested in June 2017 on espionage charges. He was first sentenced to 25 years in prison for giving daily Cumhuriyet a video purporting to show the Turkish National Intelligence Organization (MİT) allegedly trucking weapons into Syria.
In a retrial on Feb. 3, his sentence was reduced to five years in prison for “revealing government information.” (…)
He recalled previous Constitutional Court rulings which ruled for the release of Cumhuriyet editor-in-chief Can Dundar, stating that similar assessments should be made for him.
The court decided that his personal rights and freedoms were not violated as his sentence was validated by high courts and that imputed crime necessitates imprisonment. (…)
The court also said Berberoğlu was re-elected as Istanbul lawmaker in the June 24 elections, but stressed the related application did not include the file on his re-election. It said there should be another individual application for his release on the ground for his re-election after all domestic legal avenues are exhausted. “It is impossible at this stage to assess if his re-election would stand as an obstacle for his imprisonment,” it read.
According to Turkish daily Sabah newspaper (03.08.18, https://www.dailysabah.com/politics/2018/08/02/erdogan-names-fahri-kasirga-as-presidential-chief-adviser), President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Thursday evening appointed former Secretary-General of the Presidency Fahri Kasırga as his presidential chief adviser under the new presidential system.
Born in 1953 in the Black Sea province of Rize, Kasırga earned a bachelor's degree in law from Istanbul University in 1977. He started to work as a nominee judge in Rize in 1978.
He also served as chief public prosecutor in different cities until 2003. Later, he became the Undersecretary of Ministry of Justice.
Between May 2007 and August 2007, Kasırga served as Minister of Justice.
From September 2014 until now, he was serving as presidential secretary-general.
According to Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (02.08.18, http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/turkish-lira-skids-past-5-to-the-dollar-on-us-sanctions-news-135319), the Turkish Lira slid to a record low beyond 5 to the dollar and stocks fell yesterday, after the United States imposed sanctions on two Turkish Ministers over the trial of a U.S. pastor accused of backing terrorism.
The lira first touched 5 to the dollar on Aug. 1, when the White House announced sanctions against Justice Minister Abdulhamit Gül and Interior Minister Süleyman Soylu over Turkey’s detention of Andrew Brunson.
The lira hit a record low of 5.0934 to the dollar early on Aug. 2, recovering to trade at 5.0400 by later in the day.
The currency has lost a fifth of its value this year, battered by rising inflation and concerns over the Central Bank’s independence in the face of repeated calls by Turkish officials for lower interest rates.
Istanbul’s main share index, the BIST 100, fell 2% on Aug. 2, with banking stocks among the decliners.
The cost of insuring exposure to Turkish debt also rose on Aug. 2 to a 6.5 year high after the news. (…)
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