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Turkish Cypriot and Turkish Media Review, 17.09.19

 

Content

A.Turkish Cypriot Press

1. Akinci returns the Turkish flag to occupied Lysi village

2. Tatar: “TRNC’s flag is a symbol of independence and peace”

3. Greek Cypriot women arrested in occupied Morfou released

4. BKP: “The regime in the north violates human rights”

5. KTOS says that the population in the breakaway regime is much larger than stated by the “interior minister”

6. “Kyrenia cannot carry this population”

7. Kibris: “Famagusta development plan not possible without fenced-off Varosha”

B. Turkish Press

1. Erdogan: “Trilateral summit in Ankara to add dimensions to Astana process”

2. Military exercise by the Turkish army is taking place in Eastern Mediterranean

3. Turkey and Azerbaijan to build simplified customs frontier

 

 

A.Turkish Cypriot Press

1. Akinci returns the Turkish flag to occupied Lysi village

Turkish Cypriot newspaper Star Kıbrıs(17.09.19) reports that Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci is expected to return today to “Dr Fazil Kucuk” primary school’s director, Sozer Ozkaramehmet, the Turkish flag and the picture of former Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Denktas, which had been stolen from the aforementioned school in occupied Lysi village by a 16-year-old Greek Cypriot, during a ceremony in the church of the occupied village on 8 September.

The paper notes that the father of the 16-year-old has sent the flag and the picture to Akinci with a letter apologizing for his son’s act.  

After receiving the letter, Akinci stated that “a big mistake was committed” and that “the necessary lessons and conclusions should be drawn”. “Filling up the minds of young people with enmity and hatred is a heavy burden both for the young people and for our island”, he argued and added:

“It is important that they admitted that they had committed a mistake and apologized for it. In order to not repeat these mistakes, the culture of peace must be strengthened in both communities in all fields of life, from the family hearth to the school desks. As it came out in researches, unfortunately, many Greek Cypriot young people are brought up as fanatics, especially in schools. This and similar incidents show that it is absolutely necessary to get rid of fanaticism from the education policies. The young people and the communities must behave with respect to each other’s symbols and values. And the Bi-communal Technical Committee on Education is working for establishing the culture of peace in Cyprus […]”.

(I/Ts.)  

 

2. Tatar: “TRNC’s flag is a symbol of independence and peace”

According to illegal Bayrak television (16.09.19-https://www.brtk.net/?english_posts=flag-emphasis-from-tatar), so-called prime minister Ersin Tatar and so-called minister of national education and culture, Nazim Cavusoglu visited the occupied village of Lysi, to attend a ceremony to mark the beginning of the 2019-2020 education year at the “Akdogan Dr. Fazıl Küçük primary school”, from where a Greek Cypriot stole the Turkish flag and a photo of the late Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf Raif Denktas.

Ersin Tatar brought a Turkish flag to the opening ceremony of the school and stated that “this flag is the symbol of independence and freedom”, stating that they would not allow anyone to touch their flag.

Noting that the flag being stolen had led to many reactions from a majority of Turkish Cypriots, Tatar alleged further the following: “We always support an agreement and peace being found in Cyprus but we will never accept anyone disrespecting our flag or the TRNC values”.

Reiterating that the “flag is a symbol of independence and peace”, Tatar said that they would never allow anyone to touch the flag again and stressed that he wanted to give a clear message on this issue.

 

3. Greek Cypriot women arrested in occupied Morfou released

Turkish Cypriot daily Yeni Duzen (17.09.19) reports that the two Greek Cypriots, a woman aged 52, Maria Hadjikyriakou and her 20 year old daughter who were arrested the other day in occupied Morfou, by the so-called police with the justification that they were taking photos and videos of their house in occupied Morfou, which is located in an area where photos and videos are prohibited, were accused yesterday and released.

 The two women remained into custody for 24 hours in the “police station” in occupied Morfou and the so-called police seized their mobile phones. The 52 year old woman admitted that she entered thegarden of her house in occupied Morfou with the aim to take some photos. She added, however, that there was no warning placard that photos were prohibited there. The two women were facing charges of entering into a forbidden area and then were released without proceeding to a “court”, the paper writes.

(AK)

 

4. BKP: “The regime in the north violates human rights”

Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris (17.09.19) reports that the United Cyprus Party (BKP) condemned in a written statement the “arrest” of two Greek Cypriot women in occupied Morfou, who were accused of taking photos there. Describing this practice as outdated, BKP underlines that this “serves nothing else but chauvinism and nationalism”.

In a written statement, the spokesperson of the women’s council of the party, Hediye Yigiter, stated, inter alia, the following: “A lot of settlements and houses which were abandoned by the Greek Cypriots in the northern part of the island, are now located in military zones and thus the owners of these, who were born there cannot visit these places now. This is a clear indication that the regime follows practices and implements verdicts which violate basic human rights”, Yigiter said, supporting that this is a sensitive issue.

(AK)

5. KTOS says that the population in the breakaway regime is much larger than stated by the “interior minister”

Turkish Cypriot daily Haberator (17.09.19) reports that Burak Mavis, the education secretary of the Turkish Cypriot Primary Teachers Trade Union (KTOS) stated that he does not believe the information that the “interior minister” Aysegul Baybars gave last May about the population of the breakaway regime.

According to Mavis, Baybars said that the total  number of the people living in the breakaway regime is 374,299. However, he believes the statements that Serdar Denktas made in the past, according to which the population is around 800,000.

(CS)

 

6. “Kyrenia cannot carry this population”

Under the title “Kyrenia cannot carry this population”, Turkish Cypriot daily newspaper Havadis (17.09.19), on its front page, reports that Nidai Gungordu, “mayor” of occupied Kyrenia, spoke to the paper about the problems of the town, from uncontrolled population growth to traffic density and sewage plant.

Gungordu noted that the unplanned population growth has ruined Kyrenia, adding that although they have employees and budget for 33 thousand 200 persons, they provide services to approximately 130 thousand persons. He described the situation as “a lightweight boxer competing in a heavyweight boxing champion”.

He further explained that they are trying to give services to a number of population, which is not real in Kyrenia, adding that “the latest census was held in 2011, and the number of the population was 33 thousand 200, which is far behind”.

(DPs)

 

7. Kibris: “Famagusta development plan not possible without fenced-off Varosha”

Columnist Emin Akkor, writing in Turkish Cypriot daily Kibris (17.09.19), with the above title, comments on the fact that in the “draft development plan of Famagusta – Ayios Sergios – Trikomo”, occupied fenced-off Varosha was left out, in the following commentary:

“After intense debates between all sides, the development plan of Gazimagusa – Yenibogazici – Iskele [Famagusta – Ayios Sergios – Trikomo] was shared with the public. The deadline for objections and suggestions is about to end. However, the development plan has not been discussed in public as was the decree. (…)

When I looked at the draft of the development plan, I could not make sense of how fenced-off Varosha was kept out of the development plan. Turker Aktac, the chairman of the Chamber of architects, with whom I discussed in a television programme this issue, said that they, as a chamber, questioned this and they proposed to include fenced-off Varosa in the development plan. (…)

The fact that fenced-off Varosha was kept outside the development plan has brought many questions. After the draft development plan was shared with the public, I think that my criticism is necessary considering that there is no official statement by the ministry regarding fenced-off Varosha. Because there are two possible answers to the question of why fenced-off Varosha has not been included in the development plan. (…)

First, this draft was prepared before the government showed its political will to open fenced-off Varosha and the bureaucracy did not attach importance including it at the last minute. Secondly, the ministry of interior ruled out the possibility at the works of the development plan that fenced-off Varosha could be opened, because it did not believe that fenced-off Varosha would be opened.

When I look from the point of questioning issues such as harmony within the government, I must say that I see a problematic environment. When nowadays the leader of the People’s Party and deputy prime minister Kudret Ozersay going and getting up with Varosha on his mind, I wonder how they will explain the exclusion of fenced-off Varosha from the development plant by the ministry of interior, which is now attached to his own party. (…)”

(DPs)

 

B. Turkish Press

1. Erdogan: “Trilateral summit in Ankara to add dimensions to Astana process”

Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (17.09.19-http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/ankara-summit-to-add-dimensions-to-astana-process-erdogan-146623) reports that the Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said on Sept. 16 that a trilateral summit in Ankara between Turkey, Russia, and Iran would add new dimensions to the Astana peace process for Syria,

"I believe that the Ankara summit will bring a new dimension to the Astana process Erdogan told reporters ahead of a trilateral meeting on Syria with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin and Iranian counterpart Hassan Rouhani.

Erdogan said the Astana platform on Syria is a "unique attempt" to find effective solutions for Syria. "We have to take more responsibility to ensure peace in Syria," he added.

“We agree completely on preserving Syria’s political unity, territorial integrity, protecting tranquility in the field, and finding a lasting political solution,” Erdogan said.

He also said that the three countries would carry the fight against terror to another level by “eliminating terrorists in Syria east of the Euphrates River.”

During the summit, Erdogan said that the Presidents would discuss Idlib, Syria, developments east of the Euphrates River in northern Syria, and migration.

He added that Turkey stood with the Syrian people during the "most difficult and most painful" times.

Touching on an attack on Sunday on a hospital in Aleppo, Erdogan said this attack once again showed terrorism’s “brutal face.”

Rouhani, for his part, said that Iran believes that the Syrian crisis can only be solved through political means with the participation of the Syrian people.

“The U.S. presence in Syria is not legitimate, the U.S. forces must leave the region as soon as possible,” he added.

“Turkey, Russia, and Iran have laid a foundation for a lasting solution in Syria”, said Russian President Putin.

"The trilateral summit on Syria in the Astana format is the most effective mechanism to contribute to the resolution process in Syria," Putin said.

He also stressed that through the joint efforts of the three countries -- the guarantors of the Astana peace process -- stability was reached in Syrian lands, and the level of violence was reduced.

But he also remarked that the "situation in the Idlib, Syria de-escalation zone is troubling."

Putin also said that the security problems in northeastern Syria should be solved on the basis of protecting the country's territorial integrity.

Turkey has hosted the fifth trilateral summit on Monday with the participation of the Turkish, Russian and Iranian leaders in the Astana format, focusing on the turmoil in Syria.

Before the summit, Erdogan met Putin and his Iranian counterpart Hassan Rouhani in the Çankaya Palace in the capital Ankara.

 (…)Erdogan has warned that further aggression by the regime and allies might trigger an influx of millions of refugees to Turkey, which currently hosts over 3.6 million displaced Syrians, making Turkey world’s top refugee-hosting country.

The leaders of Turkey, Russia and Iran on Sept. 16 stressed a strong commitment to Syria's sovereignty in a joint statement following a trilateral meeting on Syria.

“The Presidents emphasized their strong commitment to the sovereignty, independence, unity and territorial integrity of the Syrian Arab Republic as well as to the purposes and principles of the UN Charter,” read a joint statement released following the trilateral summit on Syria.

According to the statement, the leaders discussed the situation in northeastern Syria and “reviewed the developments following their last meeting in Sochi on 14 February 2019 and reiterated their determination to enhance the trilateral coordination in light of their agreements.”

The Syrian conflict can only be resolved through “Syrian-led and Syrian-owned, UN-facilitated political process in line with UN Security Council Resolution 2254,” the leaders stated.

The leaders also rejected all attempts to “create new realities” on the ground in Syria under the pretext of fighting terrorism, said the statement, likely referring to U.S. support for the terrorist YPG/PKK, ostensibly in order to fight ISIL.

"The PKK, and its extension the YPG/PYD, is the biggest threat to Syria's future. As long as the PKK/PYD presence in the country continues, neither Syria nor our region can find peace," Erdogan said, adding that Turkey's main aim is to ensure a "peace corridor" in northern Syria.

The statement also voiced their “determination to stand against separatist agendas aimed at undermining the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Syria as well as threatening the national security of neighboring countries.”

The Presidents “reviewed in detail the situation in the Idlib de-escalation area and underscored the necessity to respect calm on the ground by fully implementing all agreements on Idlib, first and foremost the Memorandum of 17 September 2018”.

The leaders also condemned the U.S. decision to recognize Syria's occupied Golan Heights as Israeli territory, which in addition to violating international law also threatens regional peace and security, according to the statement.

 

2. Military exercise by the Turkish army is taking place in Eastern Mediterranean

Turkish daily Yeni Safak (17.09.19) reports that the military exercise “Kararlilik-2019” (Determination) has started in the Aegean and the Eastern Mediterranean by the Turkish army.

The exercise is taking place between 16-22 of September writes the paper noting that with this and similar military exercises Turkey is showing its strength and stability, against “the Greek Cypriots, Greece, USA, France, Russia and Italy” who act against it in the region.

The aim of the exercise will be to improve joint operational procedures and mutual support capabilities and operational readiness levels with the Navy, Land and Air Forces, writes the paper. The exercise will take place on 16-22 September 2019 in the Aegean and the Eastern Mediterranean, with frigates, corvettes, assault boats, amphibious ships, submarines, sea patrol aircraft, sea helicopters, unmanned aerial vehicles and Underwater Attack.

 

3. Turkey and Azerbaijan to build simplified customs frontier

Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily News (16.09.19-http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/azerbaijani-president-receives-turkish-vice-president-146613) reported that Turkey and Azerbaijan agreed to establish a "simplified customs frontier", Turkish Vice President Fuat Oktay said on Sept. 16.

The eighth meeting of the Turkey-Azerbaijan Joint Economic Commission (KEK) was held under the chairmanship of Oktay and Azerbaijani Prime Minister Novruz Memmedovi with the agreement to contribute to the signing of a preferential trade agreement this year, to facilitate mutual trade and to expedite customs procedures.

Speaking at the meeting, Oktay announced that they had signed the Eighth Term Joint Economic Commission Protocol during the meeting.

"The decisions taken by the commission today are indicative of our determination to move our economic relations further in many areas from trade to energy, transportation to education, agriculture to health on the basis of concrete actions," Oktay said.

“Ankara is determined to do its part in cooperation with Baku to prevent commercial and economic activities with the Upper Karabakh and other occupied territories”, Oktay added.

(…) “The two compromised on all 147 topics discussed in the meeting”, Memmedov underlined.

He stressed that the meeting would make a huge contribution to the development of close cooperation between the two sister countries.

Earlier in the day, Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev met Oktay in the capital Baku.

The two sides agreed on cooperation in the defense industry, as well as agriculture and pharmaceutical sectors.

 

 

 

TURKISH AFFAIRS SECTION

(AK/EH)