Illegal Bayrak (05.07.19 http://www.brtk.net/?english_posts=cavusoglu-says-turkey-will-not-bow-down-to-threats) reports that Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu evaluated the drilling activities in the eastern Mediterranean to the TRT Haber(News) Channel.
“Only Turkey can decide what it would do within its continental shelf. Also, as a guarantor country, it is Turkey’s duty and responsibility to protect the rights of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus and the Turkish Cypriot people. Therefore, we will also conduct drilling activities in areas where the TRNC has granted us licenses” Çavuşoğlu said.
He allegedthat “their drilling activity inside the island’s exclusive economic zone was in response to the Greek Cypriot side’s failure to guarantee the rights of Turkish Cypriots”.
“Although we warned the Greek Cypriot side several times it should not proceed with its drilling activities without securing the rights of the Turkish Cypriot people, in other words, without ensuring that revenues to be obtained from the oil and natural gas will be fairly shared with the Turkish side, these calls were ignored”, Cavuşoğlu claimed.
In response to the “Greek Cypriot side’s threats” to arrest the crew of the Fatih drillship and claims that it launched legal action against firms conducting these drilling activities, Çavuşoğlu said: “Such threats of the Greek Cypriot side are meaningless for us. They also know that they cannot act against us. If they do we will respond as we have in the past.”
Stressing that Turkey notified the UN and the EU over its activities in the eastern Mediterranean, Cavusoglu said all steps taken by Turkey are in compliance with international law.
According to illegal Bayrak television (05.07.19, http://www.brtk.net/ozersaygorusmeler-artik-kisir-donguye-donustu/), self-styled deputy prime minister and minister of foreign affairs of the breakaway regime in the occupied area of Cyprus Kudret Ozersay, speaking yesterday at the conference entitled “An Alternative Path on the Cyprus Issue” held at the Geneva School of Diplomacy and International Relations in Switzerland, reiterated that the Cyprus talks in Switzerland have failed , claiming: “If the international actors call on the relevant actors to continue the Cyprus talks from the point where they left off, I can assure you this will not happen.
Colum Murphy, the President of the School, expressed his pleasure to host Ozersay, an experienced negotiator of the Cyprus talks. Murphy also reacted to Greek Cypriots’ protest in Geneva, adding that the Cyprus problem cannot be solved without discussion. He further noted that contrary to international public opinion, he had a different perspective on the Cyprus issue.
Moreover, Ozersay, in his speech, stated that he was a negotiator for the Cyprus talks for 15 years and added: “I worked with three TRNC presidents [Trans. Note: Turkish Cypriot leaders] and four Greek Cypriot presidents [Tans. Note: Greek Cypriot leaders]. Negotiations have turned now into a vicious circle. Other alternatives should be tried for the solution of the problem.”
Reiterating that the process collapsed after the failure of the Cyprus talks in 2017 in Crans-Montana in Switzerland, Ozersay added that the lack of “common vision” among the sides constitutes the biggest problem.
Ozersay further claimed that the “federal partnership model”, which is on the agenda for the last 50 years, will not be possible as along as the main actors do not reach an agreement on power-sharing and prosperity.
Claiming that the Turkish Cypriot side suffered most from the current status quo and the non-solution in Cyprus, Ozersay alleged that the Greek Cypriots’ unilateral actions regarding the island’s hydrocarbon reserves constituted a problem. He further claimed: “The Greek Cypriots are acting as if they are the sole owners of the natural reserves in the Eastern Mediterranean. They refuse to reach a settlement because the status quo is in their favour”.
Noting that the resources in the eastern Mediterranean belonged to both Turkish Cypriots and Greek Cypriots, Ozersay said and that the two sides needed to find an alternative way to cooperate on this issue. “Achieving this would create interdependence between the actors involved in the Cyprus Problem and the region,” he argued.
Responding to a question on clearing mines in the UN buffer zone, Ozersay claimed: “As TRNC, we have proposed to clear all mines on the island together. But this offer was turned down (by the Greek Cypriots). But at least, the two leaders agreed to clear the mines in some places and the process began. Besides this, there are some question marks for the buffer zone. The leaders are not sure whether there are mines or not in some places in this area.”
Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris (05.07.19) reports that Turkey’s Deputy Energy Minister Arbaslan Bayraktar, speaking in a panel organized in Turkey under the title: “Energy security: Opportunity and Threats”, claimed that Turkey’s hydrocarbon activities in the Eastern Mediterranean are focused on its own geographical place and territorial waters.
“Turkey is ready to contribute to a political solution on the Cyprus problem, if this [the solution] would contribute to the equation in the Eastern Mediterranean”, Bayraktar argued.
Turkish Cypriot daily Star Kibris (05.07.19) reports that Turkey’s Vice President Fuat Oktay will hold an illegal visit tonight in the occupied area of Cyprus in order to proceed to the signing of the “economic protocol” between Turkey and the occupation regime.
Within the framework of his stay in the occupied area of Cyprus, Oktay will attend tomorrow the “1st economic chamber forum between Turkey and the TRNC”, while later in the day he is expected to visit occupied Prastio in order to have talks with the people there.
Turkish Cypriot daily Gunes (05.07.19) under the front-page title: “The economic protocol to be signed tomorrow”, reports that so-called prime minister Ersin Tatar and Turkey’s Vice President Fuat Oktay are expected to “sign” tomorrow the “economic protocol”. Invoking information, the paper adds that the “protocol”, besides the steps to be taken for the strengthening of the “TRNC” economy, envisage further, support for “reforms in the TRNC” and also covering of the “military expenses”. In addition, it envisages that Turkey would allocate 1.2 billion TL to the occupation regime within the next 6 months.
Moreover, Turkish Cypriot daily Yeni Düzen (05.07.19), under the title: “delegations from Turkey are coming to the TRNC”, reports that so-called prime minister Ersin Tatar, in statements yesterday during a meeting he held with a delegation of Hür-İş, stated, inter alia, that delegations from Turkey will be visiting the “TRNC” this week-end, in order to discuss several economic issues and carry out serious work.
Tatar stated during the meeting that they already formed a “committee” in order to work on the issue of the “public reforms” and explained that this issue will be included very soon in the agenda of the “assembly”.
Turkish Hurriyet Daily News (05.07.19 http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/in-a-meeting-with-erdogan-trump-confirmed-turkeys-right-to-receive-f-35-jets-turkish-fm-144703) reports that U.S. President Donald Trump, during a meeting with President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan on the sidelines of the G20 summit, acknowledged Turkey’s right to continue participating in the F-35 fighter jet program, Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu said on July 4.
“Trump himself said it in the meeting: He said, ‘How could there be such a thing?’ He said, ‘…this is unacceptable,’” Çavuşoğlu said, speaking to TRT broadcaster on July 4.
In the meeting, Trump said, “We are working on this,” according to Çavuşoğlu. Trump openly expressed his intention, but “there is no need to be naive and optimistic in hopes that everything will happen just as Trump says,” the minister said.
“We are cautious,” Çavuşoğlu said, noting that Trump’s remarks and acknowledgment of the situation was crucial for resolving the disagreement.
The minister noted that the U.S. rhetoric on Turkey’s purchase of the Russian-made S-400 defense systems has softened after Trump’s remarks at the press conference at the G20 summit in Osaka. “The different voices have started to diminish,” he said.
“Trump’s statement seems to have had an impact on Congress as well. We want to solve the issue through diplomatic means,” he said, adding that the efforts for solving the S-400 crisis now continue in a calmer environment.
He added that the S-400 is “a defense system, not an attack system.” It’ll be used when there is an emergency. Why would the S-400 be activated as it just stands there, it costs a lot,” he stated.
In addition, Turkish Daily Sabah (05.07.19 https://www.dailysabah.com/defense/2019/07/04/turkey-to-acquire-s-400-system-put-it-into-active-use-soon-pres-spox-kalin) reports that the Russian S-400 missile defense system will arrive shortly and be put into active use, Presidential Spokesman Ibrahim Kalın said Thursday. "Work is underway to determine its future positioning," he added.
"S-400 is not a defense system that can pose threats within our NATO security system," Kalın said.
Moreover, Turkish Hurriyet Daily News (05.07.19 http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/s-400-systems-could-be-delivered-to-turkey-next-week-defense-industries-head-144709) also reports that Turkey’s Undersecretary for Defense Industries İsmail Demir on July 4 said the delivery of Russian made S-400 missile defense systems may begin next week.
“You’ll see it next week. I wouldn’t tell the date, but our president gave a certain time. The first week has passed, [and] we are entering the second week of July. There you will also see it coming in next week; you will see the activities,” Demir told reporters when asked about the delivery of S-400 systems. He was referring to President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan’s earlier statement that the Russian systems will arrive in Turkey in the second week of July.
Elaborating on the comments that Turkey purchases S-400 systems for its geostrategic plans in the Eastern Mediterranean, Demir said Turkey does not buy the systems for that aim.
“The location of the system is something that the Turkish Armed Forces will decide according to their own assessment. But in the current planning, there is no plan to purchase S-400s to change the equation in the Eastern Mediterranean,” he said.
“But Turkey can take action where necessary when it is necessary to use a product in its hand,” he added.
Asked about U.S. threats to impose sanctions if Turkey completed the purchase, he said Turkey has taken steps to prepare for such a scenario.
“These sanctions are more or less known. We take measures against them. This will not deter us but strengthen us,” he stated.
Turkish Daily Sabah (05.07.19 https://www.dailysabah.com/diplomacy/2019/07/05/turkish-people-support-purchase-of-s-400-missiles-from-russia) reports that Turkish people back the government in the purchase of S-400 missiles from Russia. A survey revealed Thursday that 44 % of participants expressed their support, saying that the missiles "should be purchased."
Kadir Has University released the results of its annual public perception survey of Turkish foreign policy for 2019 yesterday. The survey of 1,000 people from 26 provinces above the age of 18 asked questions regarding recent significant developments in Turkey's foreign policy to find the perspective of the people on these issues.
According to the results, 44 % think that the S-400 missiles should be purchased despite the threat of sanctions from the U.S., which is a point that was specified within the respective question. Approximately 26.1 % of participants indicated that there is a "strategic partnership" between Turkey and Russia. However, it was also revealed that the Turkish public, 20.6 %, see ties with U.S. as the biggest problem with the country's foreign policy. The cross-border terrorist threats, on the other hand, came as the second biggest issue with 18.3 %.
The U.S. is still regarded as the biggest threat to Turkey according to 82.3 %, a remarkable increase from 60.2 % last year. When asked how they regard relations between the U.S. and Turkey, 39.4 % responded that the U.S. is an "unreliable" country. When it comes to the biggest problem between the U.S. and Turkey, 60.5 % said the fight against terrorism, followed by 37.3 % saying the support of the U.S. to the PKK's Syrian affiliate, the People's Protection Units (YPG). The second biggest threat, on the other hand, was Israel, again with 70.8 %.
Some 65.3 % said the closest friend of the country was Azerbaijan, followed by Turkish Cypriots. Still, despite all these criticisms and concerns regarding the U.S., the survey shows that 60.8 % of Turkish people support their country's membership in NATO. Another 50.3 % indicated that this membership benefits Turkey, while 69.6 % said that in a possible security threat, NATO membership would be helpful.
Some 61.1 % indicated their support for Turkey's EU membership, compared to 55.1 % last year. Another 20.3 % said that in their opinion, Turkey would be a member of the EU in five to 10 years. Approximately 30.3 % still think that there are some unresolved problems between Turkey and Greece, while the biggest problem between the two according to 53.8 % of the participants is the arming of Aegean islands. The Cyprus issue, on the other hand, was regarded as a problem by only 5 % of the participants.
A total 42.1 % of the participants also indicated that the policy that Turkey should take on Syria must be as impartial as possible.
As the main decisive actor in the country's foreign policy, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan comes to forefront with 72.2 % agreeing. However, when it comes to the institutions' effect on diplomacy, the Foreign Ministry was the main response at 62.9 %, leaving the presidency behind.
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