A. Turkish Cypriot Press
B. Turkish Press
Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris newspaper (04.08.18) reported that President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, revealing on Friday the action plan that includes 400 projects to be accomplished during the first 100 days of the new presidential governance system, announced that Turkey will buy a second drillship to explore hydrocarbon reserves. He further said that Turkey will start conducting deep water and shallow sea drillings in the Mediterranean Sea, stressing that they will show their determination to protect their rights in this region.
Erdogan also said: “Some people gather together and talk what Turkey is doing… Turkey knows what she is doing. Turkey will buy its second drilling vessel for explorations. (…) We will triple our efforts to get maximum benefit from the hydrocarbon reserves in the sea”.
On the same issue, Turkish Cypriot daily Star Kibris newspaper (05.08.18) reported that Erdogan, during his presentation of the action plan, referring to the Cyprus problem, claimed: “Taking into consideration that Turkey’s efforts on the national cause in Cyprus have been proved until today fruitless due to Greek Cypriot’s stance, a different process will be tried. The Secretary General of the UN will be informed regarding the realities on the island and the efforts to be convinced will be continued”.
Turkish Cypriot daily Yeni Duzen newspaper (06.08.18) reports that Tufan Erhurman, self-styled prime minister of the breakaway regime in the occupied area of the Republic of Cyprus, has argued that the “TRNC constitution” is clear on the issue that “TRNC citizens” cannot be extradited to third countries. In an interview with Yeni Duzen’s editor-in-chief Cenk Mutluyakali, Erhuman was called to comment on the fact that an interrogation has been launched in Turkey against Afrika newspaper’s journalists Sener Levent and Ali Osman and that he made no statement on this issue. Replying that Turkey can open a lawsuit in its courts against anyone who, according to its laws, has committed a crime in other countries, Erhurman added:
“This does not concern Cyprus only. It can be done in Germany. It can be done in Switzerland. And we have the responsibility of protecting the rights of our own citizens. We cannot extradite our citizens. This is a responsibility the framework of which has been drawn in the constitution. We will fulfill this responsibility”.
Asked whether he was annoyed about this development and the arrest of a Turkish Cypriot academician in Turkey, Erhurman replied that the trial of their “citizens” in the courts of any other country does not make them happy and added: “[…] Look, the esteemed ambassador held a press conference recently and some things were said. We are discussing all these developments with the esteemed ambassador, the police and Turkey. However, I have not exhibited the stance of talking before the press about these matters between ourselves and Turkey. […]”
Asked to comment on self-styled minister of labor Zeki Celer’s travelling abroad for vacations through Pafos International Airport and whether he was annoyed by the fact that Celer used an “airport of the south” for travelling, Erhurman said that personally he would not and does not use these airports, but this is a personal preference of Celer.
Asked whether there are disagreements within his party (the Republican Turkish Party) and within the “government” on the Cyprus problem, Erhurman argued that they have no disagreements on principle either within the “government” or with the Turkish Cypriot leader Akinci. He explained that when he refers to no disagreement on principle he means that they all use a common language saying that if the Cyprus negotiations will resume, the process should be result oriented, a package should come out and the leaders should negotiate the elements included in this package and solve the problem within a time limit.
Asked when the barricade in Deryneia will open, Erhurman claimed: “There has been some delay in the tender procedure regarding the infrastructure, this is true. However, I am saying it very openly. Let Greek Cypriot leader Anastasiades inform us when he will open the gate in the south and we will complete our works quickly and open this place. It is enough for him to call Mr Akinci and give a date. We also want him to say a reasonable date for Apliki, because we want to open Apliki as well. […]”
Referring to the economy of the breakaway regime, Erhurman said that the problem derives from the increase in the value of the foreign exchange and the devaluation of the Turkish lira. “This is the reason of expensiveness”, he noted adding that they depend on foreign exchange in the fields of electricity and fuel. He added:
“Everyone must actually see that the issue is structural. This fragile structure in the country cannot continue. Therefore, it is inevitable for us to focus on the structural reform and we have focused on it. […]
If we obtain an income of 865 million dollars from tourism, 756 million dollars from higher education and a total income of 1,6 billion dollars, does this money enter into our economy? Behold, this is the actual structural problem. […]
The local employment rate in tourism is only 22%. Only 41% of the workers in the private sector are TRNC citizens. We have a serious employment deficit here. We will abolish this employment loss. […]
The Development Bank is forming new packages for SMEs. We will have packages of incentives including grants especially for young entrepreneurs in areas where unemployment within the young people is high. […]
Of course we will discuss with Turkey the problems we experience because of the foreign exchange. We will search for solutions together, but this will not be a visit of ‘let us ask for money’. We want to talk on the Development Program. […]”
The paper publishes Erhurman’s interview under the banner front-page title “’Our direct loss from the foreign exchange is 504 million liras’”.
Under the title “There is no validity in the TRNC”, Turkish Cypriot daily Afrika newspaper (04.08.18), on its front page, reported that while Tufan Erhurman continues to be silent, Mustafa Akinci broke his silence.
Baris Burcu, Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci’s spokesman, made finally a statement regarding the case which was opened against Afrika newspaper in Ankara. He announced that “TRNC citizens’ could not be extradited to other countries nor could court decisions issued in other countries executed or have validity in the TRNC”.
In a written statement, Burcu, referring to news reports on social media and in newspapers regarding the freedom of expression, the lawsuit opened in Ankara against Afrika’s journalists Sener Levent and Ali Osman, argued that the Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci has always followed the rule of law on freedom of the press and the freedom of expression. He added that no one should have any doubt about it.
As a result of “legal investigations” and regarding the statements to the public by the “president of the supreme court” Narin Sefik, Burcu noted that “it is out of question to extradite TRNC citizens to other countries for cases, which have been opened against them, or due to the outcome of cases”.
According to illegal Bayrak television (06.08.18- http://www.brtk.net/?english_posts=erhurman-on-economy) so-called prime minister Tufan Erhurman, speaking during the opening of the Grape Festival in occupied Galateia village, pointed out to the structural problems in the “TRNC economy”.
Erhurman shared remarkable numbers concerning the “TRNC economy” with the public during the sharing the difference between imports and exports as well as the findings of employment of citizens in the private sector, he underlined that there was 20% unemployed youngsters in the “country”. “It is time to talk about these because we have created an economic system which while we have 100 million US dollars export, we have 1 billion 700 million US dollars import. We have created an economic system which while the tourism sector is our biggest sector only 22% of this sector workers are TRNC citizens and the rest are foreign nationals. We have created an economic system which only the 41% of the private sector workers are TRNC citizens and we have created an economic system in which the 20% of the youngsters are unemployed”, Erhurman said.
“Noting that 22% of TRNC citizens are employed in the tourism sector and 41% TRNC citizens are employed in the private sector in a country where the 20% of the youngsters are unemployed”, Erhurman alleged that “the ratio of the local products used in the hotels were not at a level to be happy or honoured of”.
“It is time to shake ourselves and wake up in terms of the TRNC economy and it is the right time to declare an economic mobilization. We have to produce more and work harder. We need to enable more people to join in the labour force market” Erhurman added. Noting that 51% of the population was out of the labour force market, he said this number was 61% in women. Stating that due to this reason there was a need to produce more and work harder, Erhurman said you can only survive if you produce more and work harder.
According to illegal Bayrak television (03.08.18-http://www.brtk.net/?english_posts=denktas-on-brt), so-called minister of finance Serdar Denktas, speaking in a televised program on Bayrak Radio Television made statements that are currently on the agenda.
He alleged that this year will be a difficult one financially due to the delay in the “approval of the budget”.
Explaining that due to the late “approval of the budget” and the rise in the foreign currency rates they expected the “budget deficit” to be 73 million TL by the end of the year, he added that now they foresee this to increase to 237million TL. “We have gone back 2 years. We are not responsible for this” Denktas argued.
Noting that there were some precautionary measures that needed to be taken and that there were two or three mechanisms that they could use, Denktas said that one of these mechanisms was the price stabilization fund (FIF).
When taking into account the current minimum wage, Denktas claimed that out of the 42 countries the “TRNC” ranked 17 and when you look at petrol prices the “TRNC” was at the 3rd position.
“We are doing everything we can to prevent price hikes”, Denktas alleged. Explaining that at a time when austerity measures are on the agenda how to increase revenues were also being discussed, Denktas claimed that although he knew that you needed to pump money into the system to prevent a financial crisis, first you need to fill the till for this to happen.
He said that the “coalition government” partners were determined to do all they can to overcome this difficult phase.
Denktas also claimed that despite all of the economic developments that have taken place in the “TRNC” compared to many other countries the living standards in the “TRNC” are high.
Turkish Cypriot daily Halkin Sesi newspaper (06.08.18) reports that the chairman of the Revival Party (YDP) Erhan Arikli claimed that the interlocutors of the so-called government in Ankara are annoyed by the “government’s stand” and this is the reason as he argued that the “government’s demand for an appointment with Turkish officials remained unanswered”.
Issuing a written statement, Arikli claimed that the Turkish government feels disturbed with the “government” in the “TRNC” and does not reply to the “TRNC’s government demand for giving an appointment”, because of its delay to undertake steps for the implementation of the “2016-2018 economic protocol”, due to the fact that it does not take into account the proposals and sensitivities of the Turkish officials, since it considers Turkey only as a “source of money”.
Alleging that the YDP is not pleased seeing their ties with “motherland Turkey” to be in a bad level, Arikli said that only those who do not believe in the “TRNC” and the sectors who support that “federation is the only remedy”, would be pleased seeing the deterioration of Turkey’s ties with the “TRNC”.
Arikli called on so-called prime minister Tufan Erhurman to decide “either to surrender to the panfederalist front of his part, resign and say ‘ok, we could not do it, we could not succeed’, or as prime minister he should do with decisiveness all necessary for the economy of the “TRNC”.
Meanwhile, Turkish Cypriot daily Gunes newspaper (06.08.18) reports that the leader of the National Unity Party (UBP) Huseyin Ozgurgun condemned the so-called four coalition government not only for the increases implemented in the occupation regime but also for its policy on the Cyprus problem.
Accusing the “government” for failing to produce solution on the problems arisen due to the loss of value of the Turkish Lira against foreign currencies, Ozgurgun condemned further the “government” for not clarifying its stand towards the new period ahead for the Cyprus problem. “We are worried. Does this government opposes to the guarantees or not?”, Ozgurgun said, calling the “government” to state openly to the public which its stance is on the Cyprus problem.
Turkish Cypriot daily Afrika newspaper (06.08.18) reports that Sezai Temelli, co-Chairman of the Peoples’ Democracy Party (HDP) in Turkey, has condemned the attacks against Afrika newspaper and said that these are the same with the attacks against his own party. Speaking to the paper, Temelli noted that these attacks are tantamount to intolerance to criticism and added that “we know very well where these attacks have come from”. “Unfortunately, these are incidents which we experience everywhere in Turkey and result with deaths”, he said.
“The most evident example of the fact that these were a guided provocation is that the attackers against Afrika newspaper were set free right after they were taken into custody”, he noted and added that this is something they see very often. “Look, in Suruc three of our citizens were murdered in front of everybody’s eyes and the perpetrators have not been arrested yet”, he said noting that everybody saw and knows these perpetrators, who are still free.
Asked whether he knows what the situation in the Syrian town of Afrin is today, Temelli said that the principles of Sharia are valid today in Afrin and that the women, children and all the people in Afrin are experiencing a drama which no one wants to see. He noted that the issue of Afrin is the same with the Cyprus problem.
Turkish Cypriot daily Diyalog newspaper (05.08.18) reported that Zeki Celer, self-styled minister of labor of the breakaway regime in the occupied area of the Republic of Cyprus, has visited Jordan for vacation travelling through Pafos International Airport. According to the paper, Celer returned to Cyprus the night before yesterday using again the same airport.
Diyalog recalls that Bertan Zaroglu, “deputy” with the settlers’ Revival Party (YDP) reacted to Celer using Pafos International Airport by saying that if Celer returned through the illegal airport in occupied Tymbou, he would pay his ticket. Zaroglu also alleged that the fact that Celer travelled through Pafos harmed the “state’s” dignity during a period in which “negotiations on the basis of political equality and two states are being conducted”.
Reacting to Zaroglu’s statement, Celer said: “We have quietly served our military service in the place of ‘great nationalists’ like him. Is it a lot for him to buy us a ticket?”
Under the title “Parties’ voting balance has changed”, Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris newspaper (04.08.18) published a recent study by CMIRS (The Centre for Migration, Identity and Rights Studies) on “local elections” in the occupied area of Cyprus, which was conducted prior to the “local elections” on June 2018. It has showed that the CTP (Republican Turkish Party), UBP (National Unity Party) and TDP (Social Democracy Party) have raised their voting ratios, but in the quartet coalition partners there is a significant decrease on HP (Peoples’ Party) and a small decrease on DP (Democratic Party).
On the question “Which party would you have voted for if there were elections in the coming Sunday?”, the 19.07% of the respondents said UBP, the 19% said CTP, the 5.3% TDP, the 4.3% HP and the 1.5% DP.
It is interesting to note that the respondents of the survey, who have started to lose their hope to the “government”, have also a different picture on the “coalition government”. It showed that CTP and TDP have increased their vote rate, while the HP and DP show a serious decrease.
Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris Postasi newspaper (06.08.18) reports that the “undersecretary” of the so-called ministry of tourism and environment Ismet Esenyel has been “appointed” “ambassador” of the World Association for Hospitality and Tourism Education and Training (AMFORHT).
The AMFORHT “granted” Esenyel with a delegation certificate for his contribution to the fundamental objectives and the humanist values of the Association in the fields of tourism, education and training who undertakes to promote, represent and develop AMFORHT in Turkey, the “TRNC” and worldwide.
Commenting on this development, Esenyel said that he became a member of the Association in 2009, while in 2014 he was elected a “vice president”. He added that he feels honor for becoming “ambassador” of the Association and alleged that they exert great efforts for promoting “north Cyprus tourism potentials worldwide”.
Turkish Cypriot daily Halkin Sesi newspaper (04.08.18) reported that the “state planning organization” announced that the inflation rate for the month of July has reached to 2.26%.
According to the date, the rate of the inflation (consumer price index) for 7 months increased by 14.64%, bringing the annual inflation rate to 20.30%.
The biggest rise in prices was noted in cucumbers (124.80%) and fresh beans (94.15%). Also the average price of 364 monitored produced increased compared to last month, while for 76 products, the price was reduced.
Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (04.08.18-http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/paris-hilton-arrives-in-turkish-cyprus-as-part-of-tour-135436) reported that the American socialite Paris Hilton arrived in the “TRNC” on August 4 for an appearance to promote her new perfume.
The TV personality, businesswoman, and model was welcomed by so-called minister of tourism Fikri Ataoglu at illegal Tymbou airport, Turkish state-run Anadolu Agency reported.
Hilton told reporters at the “airport” of her excitement of being in the “TRNC”
Meanwhile, according to Ankara Anatolia news agency (05.08.18-https://www.aa.com.tr/en/culture-and-art/paris-hilton-hosts-party-in-north-cyprus/1223146) Paris Hilton, in the framework of her stay in the occupied area of Cyprus organized a party, where she performed as a DJ.
The party on Saturday night at Limak Cyprus Deluxe Hotel continued till the early hours of Sunday.
Previously, at a joint press briefing with Limak Tourism Group Chairman Kaan Kavaloglu, Hilton said she likes discovering new places and would like to visit the “TRNC” again.
Kavaloglu said they are happy to host Hilton in the “TRNC”."Paris Hilton is the most famous person who came to the island until today, we are happy to host her in Limak Cyprus Deluxe Hotel," he alleged.
Hilton visited the “TRNC” as part of her Platinum Rush European Tour 2018. Her European tour for her fragrance also includes Ibiza, Spain, and Romania’s capital Bucharest and Black Sea resort of Mamaia.
Also, Turkish Cypriot daily Yeni Duzen newspaper (05.08.18) reported that so-called minister of tourism and environment Ataoglu, commenting on Hilton’s visit in the occupied area of Cyprus described it as very important for the promotion of the “country”.
Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (04.08.18-http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/turkey-to-freeze-assets-of-two-us-ministers-as-retailiation-to-sanctions-erdogan-135419) reported that President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has announced that Turkey will freeze the assets of two United States Ministers as retaliation to Washington's sanctions against Ankara.
"The latest step taken by the U.S. in the incident of pastor Brunson in İzmir was not suitable to a strategic partner. The U.S has displayed a serious disrespect with this step," Erdogan said in a speech at the ruling Justice and Development Party's (AKP) congress for its women's organization in Ankara on Aug. 4.
"We have had shown patience until yesterday evening. Today I am instructing my friends that we will freeze the assets of U.S. Secretaries of Justice and Interior in Turkey, if they exist," he added. "Those who think that they can make Turkey take a step back by resorting to threatening language and absurd sanctions show that they do not know the Turkish nation", Erdogan added.
Erdogan reiterated that “the language of threats” will not work on Turkey. “It is understood that those who accuse us of not having knowledge of the U.S. [administrative] system are unaware of the history and culture of this nation. Turkey cannot be a tool for domestic politics neither in Europe nor the U.S. The U.S. will gain nothing by repeating Europe’s mistakes.”
Erdogan said Turkey has no intention of being a party to a “lose-lose game.” “I believe that there are no unsolvable problems between us and the U.S., or any other state,” he said.
Meanwhile, Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu also vowed that "threatening language will not make the Turkish nation bow down."
In a speech to the AKP's advisory assembly in the southern province of Antalya, Cavusoglu said: "No one can get a result from Turkey with pressure and sanctions. We are bringing up the current problems. Are you interested in coping with them as two allies? Then let's sit down and talk about how we can solve them, how we can activate our bilateral working groups. This is how we can solve them. Imposition won't work."
The U.S. had 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.
Under the current U.S. sanctions, any property, or interest in property, belonging to Turkish Justice Minister Abdulhamit Gül and Interior Minister Süleyman Soylu within U.S. jurisdiction would be blocked. Americans would generally be prohibited from doing business with them.
Turkey had said it would retaliate the sanctions in the same way.
Brunson, a Christian pastor from North Carolina who has lived in Turkey for more than two decades, was indicted on charges of having links with the outlawed Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK) and FETÖ, which Ankara blames for the failed coup in 2016.
He was transferred to house arrest on July 25, which triggered strong statements from U.S. officials including President Donald Trump and Vice President Mike Pence.
Ankara Anatolia news agency (04.08.18-https://www.aa.com.tr/en/politics/turkey-to-host-10th-ambassadors-conference-in-august/1222447) reported that the 10th annual Ambassadors’ Conference will be held in Turkey on August 12-17, diplomatic sources said.
This year’s Ambassadors' Conference has the theme “Entrepreneurship and Humanitarian Foreign Policy in Presidential System of Government".
The annual conference reviews events relevant to Turkey's foreign policy, discusses current challenges and opportunities, and evaluates the country's priorities.
The Ambassadors are also scheduled to visit President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Parliament Speaker Binali Yildirim to receive instructions.
Guests at the event will include Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, Slovakian Foreign Minister Miroslav Lajcak and Sudanese Foreign Minister Aldirdiri Mohamed Ahmed.
Ankara Anatolia news agency (03.08.18-https://www.aa.com.tr/en/economy/turkish-president-erdogan-unveils-100-day-action-plan/1221856) reported that President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Friday unveiled first 100-day action plan of Turkey's new presidential Cabinet in the capital Ankara.
"Today, we share our first 100-day action plan with you," Erdogan said at the presentation meeting at the presidential complex.
Erdogan said they are planning to announce Medium-Term Program by the end of August.
“We have started working on a strategic plan for 2019-2023 and aim to complete this by the end of November,” he said.
Erdogan said that over 1,000 projects will be completed within 100 days but announced most important are 400 in the program.
He noted that 48 out of 400 projects are related to defense industry and said that Turkey has no second thoughts on defense industry projects.
Speaking about judicial system in the country, he said: "We have come a long way in recovering from the destruction that FETO [Fetullah Terrorist Organization] caused to our judicial system".
Erdogan said within the scope of action plan, the environmental impact assessment and survey project works of Canal Istanbul will be submitted for approval.
The Canal Istanbul Project, an artificial sea-level waterway that will connect the Black Sea to the Sea of Marmara and the Mediterranean, is planned to be completed by 2023.
Erdogan said that Turkey's diplomatic missions have increased from 163 to 240 and announced that Consulates Generals in Iraq's Mosul and Basra will be re-activated in scope of the 100-day action plan.
He added that a Turkish Deputy Commander will be assigned at NATO’s Iraq mission.
Speaking about Turkey’s relations with the U.S., Erdogan said: "We expect our joint works with the U.S. on Manbij will continue unaffected, [despite] other problems between us."
The Manbij deal between Turkey and the U.S. focuses on the withdrawal of the PKK-affiliated YPG terror group from the Syrian city in order to stabilize the region.
Erdogan said further that Turkey aims to increase the number of Syrians, hosted by Turkey, who will return to safe zones in Syria to 250,000.
He also reiterated that Turkey will continue to support the Palestinian people, who are subjected to "unlawful and inhumane" attacks of Israel.
Economy and energy
"We are facing an economic war. Do not worry, we will win it," Erdogan said.
Erdogan stated that nearly 40 billion Turkish liras of public sources will be managed under one account and Turkey will plan to get an additional annual income of 3 to 4 billion Turkish liras. He also called on citizens to change foreign currencies and golds into Turkish lira.
He said that due to "one-sided" reports of credit rating institutions, Turkey tends towards China in external borrowing. "In this regard, for the first time, we are issuing Chinese Yuan denominated bonds," he added.
Erdogan also said that Chinese, Mexican, Russian and Indian markets will become priority for Turkish exports in the new era.
About energy, Erdogan said Turkey’s plans to develop a domestic energy sector would include the purchase of a second drilling vessel to conduct offshore exploration of hydrocarbons in waters surrounding the country.
He added the construction of Turkey's first nuclear plant, the Akkuyu Nuclear Power Plant, is on schedule and that the second would be built in Sinop in the Black Sea province, and a third nuke plant is planned to be built in north western Thrace region.
Research and Development
Erdogan said that Turkey will raise the number of R&D and design centers by 10% and 8%, respectively.
He added that new generation of special free zones will be built mostly for software, IT, health, education and film-making.
"The most important topic of 100-day action is that Istanbul’s new airport to become fully operational on Oct. 29," Erdogan said.
Istanbul's new airport will be one of three biggest airports in the world with an annual capacity of 90 million passengers in the first phase.
In his concluding remarks, Erdogan affirmed that Turkey will put further efforts to realize its 2023 targets.
Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (05.08.18-http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/turkey-should-insist-on-updating-eu-customs-deal-says-tusiad-chief-135455) reported that the chairman of the Turkish Industry and Business People’s Association (TÜSİAD) Erol Bilecik, has said that updating the Customs Union agreement with the European Union is a vital point for Turkey.
“Our trade is also important for Europe, and it is one of the important factors that will help us create a prosperous society,” Birecik told state-run Anadolu Agency on August 5.
“We need to sit at the table, without compromising to be used, but increasing diplomacy further and assuming that there is no defeat in reconciliation. Hopefully in the coming days there will be a structure where we can get positive results. We must not stop the pressure”, he added. (…)
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