Illegal Turkish Cypriot daily Bayrak television(25.09.18) reports that Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci has alleged that the period of the old negotiating processes in the Cyprus problem was closed and now a result oriented process with a time limit is needed. In statements at the illegal Tymbou airport this morning prior to his departure for New York, Akinci said that he will be launching some contacts in the US as of tomorrow, the most important of which is his meeting with the UNSG. He alleged:
“Undoubtedly the contacts this year have a different aspect. As it is remembered, Mrs Lute, the temporary special advisor appointed by the UNSG Mr Guterres, has completed her meetings with all sides concerned. She is expected to submit her report to the UNSG. Mr Guterres would like to share with the sides his evaluations in the light of this report and to listen to our thoughts. Actually just like we have said both to him last September when we met with him after the Crans Montana and Mrs Lute during the meeting we held with her two months ago […], the period of the old negotiating processes in the Cyprus problem has ended now. Only time can be consumed with negotiating processes without a time limit and without being result focused. Time that passes serves nothing else than the strengthening of the status quo. Therefore, since it has been understood that we could reach nowhere with the methods implemented for years, it has become obligatory now for a process with a time limit and focused on the result to come onto the agenda and to exhibit political will and determination. […]”
Reiterating the allegation that the Turkish Cypriot side has undertaken many initiatives for reaching a solution, Akinci claimed that the most important reason for not having a solution is what he called as the fact that the Greek Cypriot side does not accept to really share power and the prosperity with the Turkish Cypriots in a federal partnership.
Noting that the continuation of the non-solution will negatively influence both communities, Akinci reiterated the view that the solution will benefit not only the Cypriot communities but also Greece and Turkey and argued that Eastern Mediterranean will also become a place of a new cooperation and not new tensions. He claimed:
“Progressing in the direction of the solution in Cyprus on the one hand and cooperating in the natural gas which is our right also on the other, but at the same time starting a new momentum by updating Turkey’s customs union in its relations with the EU should be seen as developments which will secure benefit to all sides concerned. In brief, this should be the common vision. […] At the point we have reached, we have the historic responsibility to meet at a reasonable point and lead our communities on the way for solution and peace. This responsibility belongs not only to me but to Mr Anastasiades as well. And beyond this, all the other sides have the responsibility to help”.
Responding to a question on the unofficial meeting between the Ministers of Foreign Affairs of Turkey, Greece and Britain today in New York, Akinci noted that any kind of dialogue within the context of the solution to the Cyprus problem is beneficial. He added: “Therefore it is very natural for the officials of the guarantor countries to meet and make assessments. However, the following issue should never be forgotten: The Turkish Cypriots and the Greek Cypriots will be those who will actually build and implement any solution to be found in Cyprus. […]”
Responding to a question on the opening of the crossing points in Deryneia and Apliki areas, Akinci admitted that this opening was delayed. He alleged that the basic delay is happening at Apliki on the issue of the building of the road in the government-controlled side of the area and added that this road will end in October. He claimed that the occupation regime has completed the road in the occupied areas of Apliki and Deryneia and that what remained is to settle the issue of building a cabin for the “police” and connecting electricity, telephone and internet. He said that there have been some delays in the past and argued that the current “government” is working speedily. He alleged: “[…] If I am not mistaken, two cabins were taken to Deryneia and one to Apliki. Works are continuing for temporary electricity connection. […] I want to say the following: As the chairman of the building constructors’ union has said, they say that they could complete this permanently within 20 days […]”.
Reiterating that the Turkish Cypriot side has also delayed on this issue, he noted that the “government” says that they will be ready when the Greek Cypriots are ready to open these crossing points. “Mr Anastasiades could raise the issue in New York. Let him raise it. At least, let us have our response ready”, he added arguing that the Turkish Cypriot side continues to support the entire package of confidence building measures agreed by the two leaders such as the cell phone network connection, the permanent connection of the electricity networks etc.
Illegal Turkish Cypriot Bayrak (24.09.18, http://www.brtk.net/garantor-devletler-kibrista-bundan-sonra-ne-olacak-sorusuna-cevap-arayacak/) reported that Kudret Ozersay, self-styled foreign minister of the breakaway regime in the occupied area of the Republic of Cyprus, has described as “very useful” the meeting he held yesterday in New York with Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu, adding that he also had the opportunity to talk with Turkish President Erdogan prior to his meeting with the Turkish Foreign Minister.
Referring to the meeting to be held today between the Foreign Ministers of the three guarantor powers of the Republic of Cyprus, Ozersay alleged the following:
“Turkey, Greece and Britain will hold an unofficial meeting here. I want to underline that the Cyprus problem will be discussed in this meeting. That is, it will not be something like a deadline, like continuation of the negotiations. The UNSG has assigned Mrs Lute with the duty of what will happen from now on in Cyprus. Negotiations have been held for 50 years in Cyprus both between the sides and with the guarantor powers. We could reach nowhere. There is one UN official who is seeking for an answer to the question of what will happen next. Not only the UN and the two sides in Cyprus seek an answer to the question of will happen from now on in Cyprus, the guarantor powers are also seeking for this answer. Behold, this is the framework within which the three guarantor powers will be unofficially meeting”.
Ozersay said that during his meeting with Cavusoglu, he had the opportunity to directly convey his views to the Turkish Minister as to what could come onto the agenda during the unofficial meeting of the Foreign Ministers of the guarantor powers and coordinate. Noting that he is in contact with Turkish Cypriot leader Akinci on this issue, Ozersay said that Akinci will also join the process after arriving in New York today.
Referring to his contacts in New York, Ozersay said that he will meet with officials of countries which participate in various ways in the negotiating process in Cyprus and from time to time express views as to what should happen in the island. He noted that he did not want to reveal which Foreign Ministers and officials of which countries he will be meeting, because the Greek Cypriots and Greece might interfere and prevent his meetings.
Describing as “very important” the fact that the Turkish Cypriot side and the “TRNC”, as he called the breakaway regime in the occupied area of the Republic of Cyprus, will have the opportunity to express their views on the Cyprus problem and other international issues in New York, Ozersay argued that they have to underline their views and values and make everyone feel that the Turkish Cypriots are a part of the world.
Replying to a question, Ozersay said that they discussed the natural gas issue with Cavusoglu and concluded: “I can say that during our meeting last night with Cavusoglu, we discussed the explorations which have been carried out and will be carried out as well as the steps to be taken”.
Turkish Cypriot daily Star Kibris newspaper(25.09.18) reports that Kudret Ozersay, self-styled foreign minister of the breakaway regime in the occupied area of the Republic of Cyprus, has alleged that the negotiations in Cyprus will not continue from the point they were left off. In statements to illegal TAK news agency after meeting with Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu in New York, Ozersay replied to a question regarding the unofficial meeting to be held today between the Foreign Ministers of the three guarantor powers of the Republic of Cyprus. He alleged:
“Yes, it is correct that there is such a thought, but I cannot say that the meeting’s agenda will be the Treaty of Guarantees or the international aspect of the Cyprus problem, just like the Greek and the Greek Cypriot press allege. On this issue there will be a statement after the meeting tomorrow [today], if this is considered to be necessary. When the duty assigned to Mrs Lute and the fact that she has held meetings with all sides concerned until today are taken into consideration, it is natural for not only the two sides but the guarantor powers as well to seek an answer to the UNSG’s question as to what should be done in Cyprus from now on. At this stage let be contented with saying the following: Those who see this meeting of the guarantor powers and try to present it as continuation of the negotiations from the point they were left off are deceived. Creative approaches are needed and not debates which were repeatedly made and are exhausted”.
According to illegal Bayrak television (25.09.18, http://www.brtk.net/?english_posts=ozersay-in-new-york-2), Kudret Ozersay, “deputy prime minister and foreign minister”, is holding a series of contacts in New York.
As part of his contacts, Ozersay met with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan who is in New York in line with the 73rd Session of the UN General Assembly. The meeting at the UN Headquarters was held closed to the press.
He also met with Turkish Defence Minister Hulusi Akar and Azeri Foreign Minister Elmar Mammadyarov.
Later, Ozersay met with the UK Deputy Permanent Representative to the UN Jonathan Allen and attended and addressed a meeting of the Economic Cooperation Organization, which the “TRNC” is an observer member under the name “Turkish Cypriot State”.
Ozersay, during his speech called on the member states to take concrete steps and cooperate in the fields of higher education, trade and tourism.
Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris Postasi newspaper (25.09.18) reports that the chairman of the United Cyprus Party (BKP) Izzet Izcan issued a written statement, recalling the importance of the discussion of the Cyprus problem within the framework of the contacts and meetings which are to take place in New York and called on all the relevant parties to show a constructive stance during their meetings with the UN’s Secretary-General Antonio Guterres.
The BKP underlined further in the statement the need for the resumption of the Cyprus negotiation talks without preconditions in the framework of the Guterres report and from the point they were interrupted at Crans Montana.
Izcan, demanded further from the Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci to undertake decisive steps towards the direction of a United Federal Cyprus. He further added that the priority of the Turkish Cypriot side at the negotiations should not be the regional economic and military interests of the Justice and Development Party (AKP) government, but indeed, the future of all Cypriots, in order to be able to live in peace.
Izcan also said that another deadlock in the negotiation process would enable the risk of the division of the island.
Meanwhile, in a separate statement, the “Left Movement”, has called on both Akinci and the President of the Republic of Cyprus, Nikos Anastasiades, to be constructive during their meetings with Guterres.
Abdullah Korkmazhan, speaking on behalf of the movement, has stressed the need for the resumption of the Cyprus negotiation talks within the Guterres framework. Korkmazhan called on both leaders to show political will during the talks in New York in order to be able to convince the UN Secretary-General.
Turkish Cypriot daily Afrika newspaper (25.09.18) reports that the deputy chairman of the Revival Party (YDP) Enver Ozturk alleged that “spokesman” of the Turkish Cypriot leader, Mustafa Akinci, Baris Burcu should immediately be removed from his “post”, due to the views and the positions he expresses in his master thesis.
According to Ozturk, Burcu has described the “1974 peace operation in Cyprus”, as it is called by Turkey and the occupation regime, as an invasion. He expresses the view that after Burcu’s statements, the “1960 Treaty of Guarantees loses its meaning”.
“According to Mr. Baris Burcu, Cyprus belongs to Cypriots and thus no state which is not a Cypriot state has the right to speak or to be legal”, Ozturk said, claiming that these positions by Burcu serve only the Greek Cypriots.
Addressing Akinci, Ozturk wonders whether Akinci was aware of these positions as they were expressed by Burcu in his master thesis, before appointing him as his “spokesman” and he also calls Akinci to state whether he agrees with these positions.
Also, the same paper in its column called “Gunun Kahramani [Translator’s note: The hero of the day], points out that Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci when he briefs the opposition parties, he also includes in his briefing Erhan Arikli (the leader of YDP) which is considered as responsible for the incidents occured in occupied Deryneia. At the same time, Akinci listens also the views of Arikli on the Cyprus problem. But, on the contrary, Arikli without losing time, demands for Burcu to be removed from his position, providing as an excuse the views he expresses in his master thesis.
Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris newspaper (25.09.18) reports that the “coast guard authorities” of the occupation regime found out yesterday a “refugee boat” off the coast of occupied Karpasia and only 13 nautical miles away from Cape Apostolos Andreas.
According to the paper, the “coast guard team”, after receiving a notice, launched an air-scale operation, accompanied by helicopters and found out the “refugee boat”.
According to information acquired, the boat was carrying 13 refugees. The captain of the boat was a “citizen of the TRNC”. All people were rescued and are safe.
Turkish Cypriot daily Afrika newspaper (25.09.18) reports that the occupied “Lefkosia district court announced yesterday its “ruling” concerning the two “suspects who were taken into custody”” concerning the attacks against the Afrika newspaper and the incidents occurred in the so-called assembly, on January 22.
According to the paper, the “decision” of the “court” to impose 4,000 TL as fine to the two suspects, Ahmet Turkmen and Metin Tas, has caused a shock in the Turkish Cypriot community, writes the paper, supporting that the “sentence” is not dissuasive but stimulus.
Meanwhile, the paper writes that the two “suspects” who accepted all accusations against them, expressed their apologies to the “court”, claiming that they regret for their actions.
According to Turkish daily Sabah newspaper (25.09.18, https://www.dailysabah.com/energy/2018/09/25/turkish-petroleum-awards-houstons-rowan-first-drill-contract-in-med), Turkey's oil firm Turkish Petroleum (TP) awarded Houston-based Rowan Companies a two-well contract in the Mediterranean Sea with an estimated duration of 100-140 days. The company's N-class jack-up rig Rowan Norway is expected to commence operations in late 2018. The Rowan Norway is currently warm-stacked in the U.K. sector of the North Sea.
In late May, Turkey's first drilling vessel, which was named after Istanbul's conqueror Ottoman Sultan Fatih Sultan Mehmet, sailed off to the Mediterranean to start the country's first deep-sea drilling operations. (…) It is capable of drilling to a maximum depth of 12,000 meters. The first drilling well will reach 2,600 meters in depth.
Rowan is a global provider of contract drilling services with a fleet of 27 mobile offshore drilling units composed of 23 self-elevating jack-up rigs and four ultra-deep-water drill ships. (…)
Additionally, the company is a 50/50 partner in a joint venture with Saudi Aramco in ARO Drilling, which owns a fleet of five self-elevating jack-up rigs that operate in the Arabian Gulf. Its Class-A Ordinary Shares are traded in the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE).
According to Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (25.09.18, http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/turkish-president-erdogan-holds-closed-door-meetings-in-new-york-137190), Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan met UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, as well as Iranian and Japanese leaders, in New York on Sept. 24.
The closed-door meeting with Guterres came a day before Erdogan's address to the General Assembly's 73rd session.
The UN said Guterres "commended the excellent UN-Turkish cooperation, including in support of Turkey’s hosting of more than 3.5 million refugees".
"The Secretary-General and the President discussed the situation in Syria, with the Secretary-General welcoming the agreement reached on 17 September to create a demilitarized zone in Idlib," the UN said in the statement.
Later, Turkish presidential sources, who spoke on the condition of anonymity due to restrictions on talking to media, said the two men confirmed their resolution to further develop close cooperation between Turkey and the UN.
Erdogan and Guterres also discussed measures taken for the de-escalation zone in Idlib following a deal between Ankara and Moscow in the Russian city of Sochi as well as the political process in Syria. Some key global and regional issues were also addressed, according to the sources.
Turkey and Russia also signed a memorandum of understanding on that date calling for the "stabilization" of Idlib's de-escalation zone, in which acts of aggression are expressly prohibited. Under the pact, opposition groups in Idlib will remain in areas where they are already present while Russia and Turkey will carry out joint patrols in the area to head off renewed fighting.
On Sept. 24, Erdogan also held closed-door meetings with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and Iranian President Hassan Rouhani in New York.
The theme of this year's general assembly meetings is Making the United Nations Relevant to All People: Global Leadership and Shared Responsibilities for Peaceful, Equitable and Sustainable Societies.
Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu, Defence Minister Hulusi Akar, Health Minister Fahrettin Koca and Industry and Technology Minister Mustafa Varank were also present at the meeting.
Erdogan's schedule in New York runs through Sept. 26.
Under the title “The biggest obstacle of solution in Cyprus is the Turks”, columnist Metin Munir, writing in online-only Turkish newspaper T24 (25.09.18, http://t24.com.tr/yazarlar/metin-munir/kibrista-cozumun-en-buyuk-engeli-turklerdir,20490?utm_medium=social&utm_content=sharebutton), reports the following:
“On Sunday, while I was sitting at my home, I got a txt message from UBP (National Unity Party) ‘deputy’ Ersin Tatar. Tatar was briefing me and probably thousands of others on his telephone list that the Cyprus issue could only result in an agreement with the Greek Cypriot side if they come to reason, but such condition is not seen for today.
Tatar is one of the most valuable, perhaps the most valuable deputy of UBP, which is the biggest party. Tatar has rare qualities: he is well-educated and honest. He is the candidate, who is closer to be elected leader at the UBP Congress to be held next month.
If I have a vote, I would have given it to him.
But, unfortunately, like all other politicians on the Cyprus issue, he is parroting (repeating) the classic statements of the Turkish side.
I replied to him: ‘If an agreement in Cyprus is desired, the Turks need to come to reason, but you cannot say this as a politician’.
I want to explain you why I think like this, knowingly I cannot convince anyone.
I don’t claim that the Greek Cypriots are bathing in zam-zam water (Holy water). However, the Cyprus problem cannot be solved due to extreme and in some cases unreasonable demands of the Turkish side.
At the beginning of these demands, the continuation of Turkey’s guarantorship, which includes the right to unilateral intervention and the Turkish army on the island to protect the Turks come to stay.
This demand is unreasonable. Humans establish a partnership with the people they can trust.
If you don’t trust the Greek Cypriots, if you are worried that one night they will come suddenly and cut our throats, why do you want to enter under the roof of a joint/common state?
Those days are over. The Turks live now in a single region and not scattered in hundreds of villages who will easily be the prey of the Greek Cypriots. They will have their own armed police force in a future federation. The roof of the European Union is an additional guarantee. And the Greek Cypriots know that if they attempt an ethnic cleansing again, their economy will collapse.
Turkey in order to intervene in Cyprus needs neither the Treaty of Guarantees nor the presence of Turkish soldiers on the island.
Nowadays, a state in order to intervene in another state has to be strong enough; it does not need an agreement as the guarantee agreement.
The intervention of Turkey to Syria and Iraq as well as U.S.A.’s intervention to Afghanistan and Saudi Arabia are examples.
If you have the power, you enter another country to protect your interests; everyone yells but no one does anything.
Then, why do you insist on the guarantee agreement and on the military presence?
Because, the Greek Cypriots will not approach any agreement unless the island is cleared from the Turkish guarantor and the Turkish army. And they are right.
Would you be comfortable with 40 thousand Greek soldiers on your frontier?
Solution for Cyprus is the demilitarization of the island.
Another issue that hampers the agreement is that the Turkish side asks for veto power in all important institutions starting from the Council of Ministers.
The Greek Cypriots accept this power only for the Council of Ministers and for important committees closely related to the Turks.
Why is not that enough?
If you have the veto power everywhere, it means that you manage the island and not together. In the world, there is not such federation model, where the minority administers the majority.
I am sorry to say this, but it is the fear, the insecurity and inferiority that determine our position in the negotiations.
If we go with this head, the lawlessness, lack of authority, illicitness and the corruption in the ‘TRNC’ which cannot manage to become a state, will finish us and not the Greek Cypriots.
The path to the solution is not the demagogue and the lies, but the facts. Let’s talk to them, children”
According to Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (24.09.18, http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/mhp-submits-amnesty-draft-bill-to-parliament-137163), the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) submitted Sept. 24 a draft bill seeking amnesty for some prisoners to the Parliament Speaker’s Office, with party officials saying a total of 162,989 prisoners would “benefit” from the amnesty. The bill encapsulates crimes committed before May 19, state-run Anadolu Agency reported.
“The number of people who will benefit from the bill is 162,989,” MHP deputy chair Feti Yıldız had said, Demirören News Agency reported over the weekend.
Crimes committed before May 19 will be subject to one-off five-year conditional reduced sentences, he added. “Crimes committed against the state, terrorism, sexual abuse, and murder will be excluded from the bill,” he said.
“The physical conditions in prisons are pretty insufficient. Occupancy rates are causing violation of human rights for people there. The capacity of 449 prisons is 211,274,” he said.
“But, as of yesterday [Sept. 21], a total of 253,535 people were recorded to be imprisoned. The health of people in prisons deteriorates and it becomes harder to live with dignity and self-respect,” Yıldız said in their reason behind presenting the bill.
The MHP has long called for granting pardons for some prisoners, mounting its calls and vowing to bring it to the country’s agenda during election campaigns ahead of the June polls, which it entered in alliance with the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP). But the AKP at the time had said it did not have the issue on its agenda.
On Sept. 23, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said their principle was to grant amnesty only to convicts who committed crimes against the state, saying crimes against individuals cannot be subject to amnesty. He said they will discuss the bill if submitted to Parliament by the MHP.
According to news portal Turkish Minute (25.09.18, https://www.turkishminute.com/2018/09/25/cumhuriyet-reporter-faces-investigation-due-to-report-on-courts-brunson-ruling/), Turkish prosecutors have launched an investigation into the Cumhuriyet daily’s court reporter, Alican Uludağ, due to a report he wrote about a Turkish court’s decision in July to put an American pastor under house arrest after keeping him in pre-trial detention for almost two years, according to a tweet from the Turkey branch of the Reporters Without Borders (RSF).
After he was kept in pre-trial detention in an İzmir prison for almost two years on terrorism and espionage charges, US pastor Andrew Brunson was moved to house arrest in July despite expectations of the US administration for his release.
Following the court’s decision on Brunson, Uludağ wrote an article questioning the independence of the court because the same court had ruled for the continuation of Brunson’s pre-trial detention a week earlier. “Is it the judiciary or the state that both jailed and released [the pastor]?” was the headline of his story. The journalist claimed Brunson was jailed by the government and was put under house arrest by the government and not by the court.
The investigation into Uludağ has been initiated based on Article 301 of the Turkish Penal Code (TCK), which concerns insulting the Turkish Republic and the state’s agencies and organs.
Uludağ will testify to prosecutors next week, according to RSF. (…)
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