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Turkish Cypriot and Turkish Media Review, 300819



A.Turkish Cypriot Press

1. Ozersay: Varosha will open gradually – We cannot say to an investor ‘come and take’ a property which has an owner

2. How the press covers the journalists’ visit to occupied fenced-off Varosha – Reports that the city will definitely open

3. The opposition disagrees on the handling of the opening of fenced-off Varosha by the “coalition government”

4. Akinci asks for the mutual opening of crossing points in Paphos and Famagusta Gates

5. Oruc Reis on the way to the Eastern Mediterranean

6. The Fatih drillship will continue its illegal activities in the west of Akamas until November 1st

B. Turkish Press

1.Erdogan: “We will never allow the seizure of the rights of our nation and the Turkish Cypriots”

2. Akar: “Over 17,000 FETO suspects purged from Turkish military”

3. Erdogan backs once again the restoring of death penalty in Turkey

4. Turkey’s Trade Minister announces an Export Master Plan



A.Turkish Cypriot Press


1. Ozersay: Varosha will open gradually – We cannot say to an investor ‘come and take’ a property which has an owner

Turkish Cypriot newspaper Güneş(30.08.19) reports that Kudret Ozersay, self-styled foreign minister of the breakaway regime in the occupied area of Cyprus, has said that the occupied fenced-off city of Varosha would probably become a non-military area gradually and alleged that the property rights of the city’s former inhabitants and of the EVKAF foundation would be protected. In statements yesterday during a visit of Turkish Cypriot and Turkish journalists to Varosha, Ozersay argued that the visit “will give the opportunity for some prejudices of either the public opinion or the international community” regarding Varosha to break and for “everyone to evaluate reality from their own perspective”. He said that this visit was only the beginning and that their intention was to give the opportunity to various international “players” to “read this place” correctly.

“Today as government, we do not consider reasonable and logical for a place like Varosha to be a military area”, he said and added: “Probably there will be a policy which includes a perspective as regards the city to gradually become a non-military area. […] We are not considering of prolonging this very much”.

Ozersay argued that the regime’s current approach accepted Varosha’s former Greek Cypriot inhabitants “as interlocutors, as partners”, but it did not accept the Greek Cypriot leadership as interlocutor for seeking together a solution to this issue. He alleged that they were looking for ways to take steps “without losing the perspective of human rights” and that their effort was not related to the negotiations with the Greek Cypriot side. He added that the UN officials were not their interlocutors on this issue.

Asked to comment on Resolution 550 of the UN Security Council on Varosha, he argued that the Resolution was a reaction to the effort of the regime to settle “our citizens” in the city in the 1980’s and added:  “As government, we made no statement in this direction, that is, that we will open it for the settlement of our citizens. Our stance is in the direction of turning a military area into a non-military area, probably gradually, in harmony to the 21st century, by taking into consideration the rules of human rights, the principles and the court decisions. […] I say that we will follow a policy which will protect the rights of both the former inhabitants and of EVKAF. […]”  

Responding to a question, Ozersay said that some decisions regarding Varosha could be taken and be implemented before the completion of the inventory study and added that this policy would be materialized within months, not years. He further alleged that the steps which the regime would take on the issue of Varosha would not influence negatively the solution of the Cyprus problem.  

Asked to comment on the information that installations in the closed city of Varosha would be given to “investors from abroad”, Ozersay noted that they could not say to an investor “come and take” a property which has an owner.

Referring to the “allegations” that the “Immovable Property Commission” would get into action for the properties in closed Varosha, Ozersay recalled that around 300 applications regarding Varosha had been submitted until now to this commission.

Asked whether they would organize a visit to Varosha for Greek Cypriot and foreign journalists as well, Ozersay said that they were working on this issue but could say nothing concrete. He reiterated that they considered the public opinion in “south Cyprus” and Varosha’s former inhabitants as their partners and added that they attached importance to briefing correctly the former inhabitants of the properties.

Referring to the inventory study, Ozersay noted that they register both the movable and the immovable properties and that the inventory study for a part of the properties, which were antiquities, had been completed. He said that these properties were in a building that could be described as a “museum”. He added that the inventory study for some antiquities had not been completed and that these were under protection. He said that they had also registered icons taken from churches and that icons existed in the basement of Saint Barnabas Monastery. 

According to Ozersay, there were some valuable things which were in safes which had been gathered at one place. He added that some safes could not be removed and were under protection at the place they had been.   



2. How the press covers the journalists’ visit to occupied fenced-off Varosha – Reports that the city will definitely open

Under the title “Varosha will open part by part”, Turkish Cypriot newspaper Havadis(30.08.19) reports that the occupied fenced-off city of Varosha opened yesterday for representatives of the Turkish Cypriot and Turkish Press after 45 years. During their visit, the journalists were escorted by Kudret Ozersay, self-styled foreign minister of the breakaway regime in the occupied area of Cyprus.

According to the paper, the tour took place under the supervision of Turkish occupation army officers and the limited route included Pertev Pasa monument, the building of the Turkish Cypriot “telecommunication authority” which still works and the areas of the municipal market and the Golden Sand Hotel. During the visit, live broadcasting was prohibited and taking pictures in areas except for the pre-determined ones was not allowed, writes Havadis, which publishes also many pictures from Varosha.  

Under the title “Behold Varosha after 45 years”, Turkish Cypriot newspaper Afrika(30.08.19) reports that the journalists toured, saw and took pictures. “The traces of barbarism are deeper than the estimations”, notes the paper. In its column today, Sener Levent writes, inter alia, the following: “Varosha is the new nest of plunder. According to Mr Kudret, they will turn it into parcels gradually. […] Why do you think all the persons coming from Turkey go there? They choose a place for them. Just like they have chosen in Keryneia, in Karpasia. […] Some clever guys among us are seeking for commission. Salesmen, real estate agents. They are trying to bring together the moneybags of Turkey with the Greek Cypriot property owners from Varosha and taste the cream. […] Varosha was a paradise. Turkey turned it into hell.  Now, the masters of plunder reserve a place for themselves in hell. Soon they will go and write on the doors ‘reserved’ […]”

Writing in Turkish Cypriot newspaper Yeni Düzen(30.08.19), Cenk Mutluyakali refers to his impressions from what Ozersay said and reports the following under the title “What is the road map regarding Varosha?”:

“- There is no clear action plan with ‘a time table’.

- The wish is first to take out closed Varosha from the scope of being a ‘military area’.

- It is said ‘gradually’, but what I saw is that the army does not intent to abandon Varosha.

- An effort exists to open the way of the ‘Immovable Property Commission’.

- The thought is the following: Let the Greek Cypriots come and apply to the Immovable Property Commission.

- There is absolutely no intention as regards the return [of Varosha] to the United Nations.

- The formulas of the Commission are the ‘exchange, compensation and return’.

- Ozersay gives no clear answer to the question: ‘By taking Varosha out of the scope of being a military area, will you open the way for the return formula’?

- His hands are not open on this issue.

- EVKAF could not persuade even the administrators of this country for the allegation that it is Varosha’s owner.

- I ask one official ‘which of these buildings was constructed by EVKAF?’ ‘No one’, he says.

- There is an intention for Varosha and I think that the intention in the UBP is different than the intention in the HP.

- There is still no ‘road map’.”

Under the title “Akinci, Tatar and Ozersay agree: Varosha will open!” Turkish Cypriot newspaper Haberci(30.08.19) reports that Turkish Cypriot leader Akinci, “prime minister” Ersin Tatar and “foreign minister” Kudret Ozersay agree on the issue of opening Varosha, that the city should open for its legal owners and that the methods of return, exchange or compensation should be used.

“The Greek Cypriots think that Ozersay made a show by taking our journalists there yesterday”, notes that paper adding: “However, Haberci team was also there. Ozersay in no way made a show. The Greek Cypriot journalists lost their temper. Everyone […] called their friends, who were going there. They asked pictures. Let us give them a gossip? Very soon we will show you around as well. […]”

Writing in his column in the same paper, Serhat Incirli, who participated in the journalists’’ visit, reports that he was convinced that Varosha will open for people to settle. Noting that before the visit he did not believe Ozersay and Tatar when they said that they would open Varosha, Incirli expresses the view that the city should open for its legal Greek Cypriot owners.



3. The opposition disagrees on the handling of the opening of fenced-off Varosha by the “coalition government”

Under the title “Varosha cannot be left out from the negotiations”, Turkish Cypriot daily newspaper Yeni Bakis (30.08.19), on its front page, reports that representatives of some political parties of the opposition stress that the issue of the fenced-off Varosha, which has been recently in the agenda of the “government”, should be solved through the negotiations. They further said that the “government” is trying to distort the agenda with things that will not be done and that the policy they follow is mistaken.

Erdogan Sorakin, general secretary of the Republican Turkish Party (CTP), said that the Varosha issue is important and its evaluation outside of the negotiation process is not correct. He added that the international law does not accept the approach that “Varosha is a Turkish territory”, stressing that it is not possible the issue to be solved outside the procedure that the United Nations envisages.

Izzet Izcan, leader of the minor party United Cyprus (BKP), said that “the official policy of the government at this moment is the opening of the fenced-off Varosha”, adding that this is a blackmail and it is not right to be used as an element of oppression. He further explained that such policies are not possible to contribute to the solution of the Cyprus problem, adding that the policy, which is followed on the issue of Varosha, is wrong and that the Turkish Cypriot community will not benefit at all.

Alpay Durduran, member of the secretariat of the minor party New Cyprus (YKP), commenting on the issue, said: “Our advice is that the resolutions to be oriented in solution with peaceful methods. If the sides want help to be within the framework of the United Nations. […] we should not make the problem more difficult through a show of power as if we are going to seize the properties of the Greek Cypriots”.



4. Akinci asks for the mutual opening of crossing points in Paphos and Famagusta Gates

Turkish Cypriot daily Yeni Duzen (30.08.19) reports that Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci has said that it would be useful the mutual opening of the crossing points in Paphos Gate and Famagusta Gate.

According to a statement issued by his “office”, speaking yesterday during a festival which took place in the occupied area of Cyprus, said that in the past they have put forward to the negotiating table the issue of the possibility for a regulation to take place so that vehicles to be able to pass through Ledra Palace crossing point in case that the opening of the above crossing points would be delayed. He added further that they have discussed with President Anastasiades and the UN Secretary General`s Special Representative in Cyprus Elizabeth Spehar the preparation of a study and evaluation of this issue. “We are following this issue. It would be useful for both communities for these two crossing points to open”, Akinci added.

Pointing out that the Greek Cypriot side seems to give priority to the crossing points in Kokkina, Athienou and Aglatzia, Akinci said that the opening of new crossing points is a difficult process which was experienced in the past with the openings of the crossing points in Apliki and Deryneia. He, however, stressed that they should always take into consideration the “people’s needs”.



5. Oruc Reis on the way to the Eastern Mediterranean

Turkish Cypriot daily Diyalog (30.08.19) reports that Oruc Reis Seismic research ship, which has been conducting seismic surveys in the Black Sea and Marmara since August 2017, is on the way to arrive in the Eastern Mediterranean to carry out seismic surveys there.

According to the paper, the Oruc Reis research ship departed from Istanbul to Mersin and has already arrived to Antalya. Frigates and assault ships of the Turkish Naval Forces accompany the Oruc Reis. It’s destination is Tacucu port and right after it would launch researches in the Eastern Mediterranean. 

The Turkish Ministry of Defense in a tweet said: “Our research ship is on the wat to Mersin and is accompanied by frigates and assault ships”.



6. The Fatih drillship will continue its illegal activities in the west of Akamas until November 1st

Illegal Bayrak television (30.08.19-, broadcast that according to a statement issued by Turkey’s Naval Forces Office of Navigation Hydrography and Oceanography, the Fatih drillship will continue its activities in the Eastern Mediterranean until November 1st, 2019. Fatih drillship will carry out drillings 45 miles west of Akamas Peninsula.

Meanwhile, so-called Turkish Cypriot security forces announced that TCG Atak assault boat which has anchored in the occupied port of Famagusta, will be open for public visits as of today, on the occasion of the “celebrations for the 30rd of August-Victory Day”.



B. Turkish Press

1.Erdogan: “We will never allow the seizure of the rights of our nation and the Turkish Cypriots”

Ankara Anatolia news agency (29.08.19- reported that President Recep Tayyip Erdogan issued a message on Thursday to mark the 97th anniversary of Victory Day, a key Turkish defeat of Greek forces in the country’s War of Independence.

Describing the victory in 1922 as a declaration of will for independence, Erdogan said: “Our nation is ready to show the same sacrifice and courage for the sake of this homeland today as it did yesterday.”

The struggle of the Turkish Armed Forces within and outside our borders to protect our national survival is the most “obvious” example of Turkey’s determination, Erdogan added.

“We are determined to break all the pitfalls against our country in northern Syria, Iraq and the Eastern Mediterranean,” he said.

“We will never allow the seizure of the rights of our nation and the Turkish Cypriots,” he added.

Erdogan also honored Mustafa Kemal Ataturk -- the founder of the Republic of Turkey -- and wished divine mercy upon those who lost their lives in the battle.



2. Akar: “Over 17,000 FETO suspects purged from Turkish military”

Ankara Anatolia news agency (30.08.19- reportSthat more than 17,000 FETO suspects have been purged from Turkey's military since the July 15, 2016 coup attempt, the country's National Defense Minister Hulusi Akar announced.

Underlining that the Turkish Armed Forces continued to strengthen as "traitors" among its ranks were removed, Akar said that the expulsions -- 17,498 so far -- would continue until "not a single traitor" wore a Turkish military uniform.

"Since the beginning of the year, 676 terrorists have been neutralized, 64 in [Operation] Claw-1,16 in Claw-2 and 22 in Claw-3," Akar said, referring to ongoing Turkish anti-terror operations in Northern Iraq.

"Hopefully our 82 million citizens will be rid of this scourge of terrorism. Terrorists have no choice but to surrender and give up," he said.



3. Erdogan backs once again the restoring of death penalty in Turkey

Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (29.08.19- reported that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has once again brought up the issue of restoring the death penalty, vowing to approve such legislation if parliament passes it, after the murder of a woman by her ex-husband last week sparked nationwide outrage.

“Everything is expected from the state. They insist on the death penalty and I, as President, say that I would approve the death sentence if Parliament passes it. Today, I have the same stance,” Erdogan told private broadcaster CNN Türk on Aug. 28.

Erdogan;s remarks came about a week after Emine Bulut was brutally murdered by her ex-husband, who slit her throat in a café before the eyes of her 10-year-old daughter. The video of the attack was published online, stirring nationwide outrage.

Erdogan also said that the dismissed Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) Mayors were “transferring the taxes of the public to Qandil Mountains.” He was referring to the headquarters of the illegal PKK in the Qandil Mountains located in northern Iraq and Sinjar Mountains in Iraq’s northwest.

“We suspended three Mayors, who were involved in terror, with an administrative decision. Why did we do this? Because they were transferring the taxes, distributed to municipalities for providing services to the public, to Qandil. In Qandil [the taxes] become bullets,” Erdogan said.

“Moreover, there are a lot of cases concerning the situation,” Erdogan conveyed, saying many mayors will face investigations and court files.

“We have a lot of cases; all of them will be discussed in detail. Then, Parliament will make the necessary decision,” he said.

Meanwhile, Ankara Anatolia news agency (29.08.19- reported that Erdogan on Thursday stressed the importance of press freedom and pluralism in a healthy society.

“We desire a freer and more pluralist Turkish press where all ideas are represented,” Erdogan said, addressing a journalism award ceremony in the capital Ankara.

He reiterated that the international media deliberately does not cover the accomplishments of Turkey.



4. Turkey’s Trade Minister announces an Export Master Plan

Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (29.08.19- reported that Turkey has identified 17 countries and five strategic industries to boost the country’s exports under, Trade Minister Ruhsar Pekcan said on Aug. 28 in an event in Istanbul where she unveiled the Export Master Plan.

“Those counties on our radar account for 60% of the world’s GDP while their share in global imports is 43.7 percent and their share in Turkey’s total exports is 25.2%,” Pekcan said.

Those countries are the U.S., Brazil, China, Ethiopia, Morocco, South Africa, South Korea, India, Iraq, the U.K., Japan, Kenya, Malaysia, Uzbekistan, Russia and Chile.

“We also identified the machinery, automotive, electric-electronics, chemicals and food as the strategic industries. We target to increase the share of high-tech product exports in the country’s total exports to 5%from the current 3.5%,” Pekcan said.

She noted that the government’s 11th Development Plan, covering 2019-2023, is based on the understanding that a stable economic growth depends on exports.

“When we laid out this Export Master Plan, we took into account the targets set in the Development Plan. We are aiming at achieving $226.6 billion in export revenues,” she said.

Pekcan reminded that Turkey’s national income stood at $784 billion and its exports hit a record $168 billion in 2018.

“In 2001, Turkey’s share in global export volume was only 0.51%  but the country’s share rose to 0.87% last year. We target to double Turkey’s share in those 17 countries’ imports,” Pekcan added.

“We want to transform free trade zones in our country into high-tech goods production centers, export centers and technology ‘greenhouses.’ We target to boost high-tech production and lure foreign investments to those centers. We invite high-tech investors to our country. We are setting a new course for a Turkey which increases its exports through productivity, innovation and digitalization,” the Minister said.

Pekcan noted that the software and information technology industry’s share in global exports is 10.5 percent whereas the same sector’s share in Turkey’s total exports is only 1.3%.

“Our target is to catch up with global trends and become a successful exporting country in such fields.”

Pekcan also said the number of companies benefitting from Eximbank’s financial support will be increased to 12,500 and further to 15,500.

“This year, Eximbank will provide $48.4 billion in financial support. We aim to boost this support to $70.4 billion 2023,” she noted.

Also, Turkish daily Vatan (29.08.9- reported that USTrade Minister Wilbur Ross ise xpected to pay a visit to Turkey on September 6.