Turkish Cypriot daily newspaper Kibris Postasi (10.11.19) reports that self-styled deputy prime minister - foreign affairs minister Kudret Ozersay, who participated in the 24th Economic Cooperation Organization (ECO) Council of Ministers Meeting in Antalya, met with Turkey’s Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu.
In a post at his social media account, Cavusoglu wrote that he evaluated with “minister of foreign affairs” Ozersay the cooperation of their “countries”.
According to Turkish Cypriot daily newspaper Kibris (11.11.19), Turkey’s Minister of Defence Hulusi Akar, commemorating the 81st anniversary of the demise of Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, the founder of the Republic of Turkey on Sunday, reiterated: “We will protect with the same determination our rights, interests in the Eastern Mediterranean, in Cyprus and in all of our ‘blue homeland’. Within the framework of the international law, we, as a guarantor country, will continue to protect our rights and the rights of our Cypriot brothers”.
Under the title “15,000 workers”, Turkish Cypriot daily newspaper Diyalog (11.11.19), on its front page, reports that there has been a 5.5 fold increase in the past eight years in the number of those who arrive from countries such as Pakistan, Bangladesh, Turkmenistan and India in the “country” [translator’s note: the occupied area of the Republic of Cyprus] to work.
In statements to the newspaper, Faiz Sucuoglu, “minister of labour and social securities”, said that “the number of the workers from third countries, which in 2010 was 2,917, raised to 14,657 in 2018. He added that the number of workers from Turkey, which in 2010 was 27,792, raised to 33,255, explaining that the increase for the workers coming from Turkey is really low compared to the number of workers coming from third countries.
The paper also reports that according to economic circles, “the workers from third countries are willing to work more hours and with ill-pay”. Sucuoglu reiterated that their aim with the “residence permits and visas regulation” is to regulate the unregistered workers. He reiterated that “approximately 750 persons, who were non-registered workers, were already deported within 2019”.
Under the title “Another shameful incident”, Turkish Cypriot daily newspaper Afrika (11.11.19), on its front page, publishes a page from a school back and writes: “Look at the books which are being distributed to children at schools although they’re not part of the curriculum”. The paper reports that the “society for the perpetuation of Rauf Denktaş and his thoughts headed by Latif Akça has started distributing books at schools with the permission of the education ministry which incites racism, discrimination and hatred”, adding that the distribution of the books has already ignited a reaction.
Afrika further reports that families were shocked when they saw the book and its contents, by drawing reaction on social media. It was also reported that some teachers refuse to distribute these books to students.
According to a publishing page from the book, a character in the book implies that “the Turkish Cypriots she met did not know very well the Turkish language and they should be taught”.
Turkish Cypriot daily newspaper Kibris Postasi (09.11.19) reports that Kudret Ozersay, self-styled deputy prime minister - foreign minister, announced that “the government will continue with determination its policy regarding the opening of Maras [translator’s note: the fenced-off Varosha]”.
In a written statement, Ozersay, chairing a meeting of the “inventory committee” of fenced-off Varosha on Friday, said that they have taken steps in order to counter a Greek Cypriot initiative launched with the UN to prevent their policy from going forward. He added that “a report being prepared on historical buildings, churches, movable properties, power lines and the condition of the buildings have almost been completed and this issue will be discussed next week in the council of ministers”.
Referring to the diplomatic steps, Ozersay claimed that they are carrying out a pro-active diplomacy and “they have been informing all of their interlocutors regarding their justified policy”. In order to counter the Greek Cypriot initiative at the UN Security Council (UNSC), Ozersay said: “We sent a letter to the UN. Also during our recent meetings in New York in September we explained the steps we have taken and the ones we plan to take. More importantly our supreme court has announced a decision on the matter,” he said.
He concluded by saying that “the most important element which will allow their initiative to come to life is ensuring that no damage comes to the rights of former residents and Evkaf foundation by adopting a balanced approach based on human rights”.
According to Turkey’s state news agency Anadolu (10.11.19, https://www.aa.com.tr/en/middle-east/365-000-syrians-returned-to-their-homeland-turkey/1641027), Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, speaking at the Bestepe National Congress and Culture Center in the capital Ankara on Sunday, said 365,000 Syrian refugees have returned to the regions that Turkey has made safe through its anti-terror operations. He added that Turkey would make the return of more Syrian refugees possible either by organizing an international donors meeting or through some model projects.
Turkey has made an area of over 8,100 square kilometers (around 3,130 square miles) in northern Syria safe for their return, Erdogan claimed, adding that this was achieved through three cross-border military operations Turkey conducted in Syria, referring to Operations Euphrates Shield, Olive Branch and Peace Spring.
According to Turkish daily newspaper Sabah (9.11.19, https://www.dailysabah.com/diplomacy/2019/11/09/no-country-can-lay-claim-to-syrias-oil-reserves-fm-says), nobody can lay any claims to the natural resources of Syria except for the country's own people, Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu said Saturday, criticizing foreign interference in the country's oil reserves.
Chairing the 24th Economic Cooperation Organization (ECO) Council of Ministers Meeting in Turkey's Mediterranean resort city of Antalya, Çavuşoğlu criticized the U.S.' recent statements about Syria's oil reserves. "They openly confess that they are there for the oil. We are talking about a country that does not hide the fact that they are in a country to confiscate its natural resources and the funds from these resources are used to support “terrorist organizations” like the PKK/YPG," Çavuşoğlu said, referring to the People's Protection Units (YPG), which is the Syrian offshoot of the PKK. He continued by adding that Turkey is closely watching statements made by the U.S. regarding the matter.
Noting that the YPG is also involved in oil smuggling like Daesh is, Çavuşoğlu said that terrorists should be prevented from accessing natural resources. "We launched Operation Peace Spring in Syria to clear the terrorists, unlike other countries like the U.S., which is there to confiscate the country's resources," Çavuşoğlu claimed and argued that this operation ensured Syria's territorial integrity by preventing the formation of a terror state in the area. "We will continue to work to ensure stability in the region," he added. (…)
Noting that Donald Trump's statement about Syrian oil reserves violates international law, Çavuşoğlu said: "We are against this. These reserves belong to the Syrian people and should be facilitated in a way that will benefit the Syrian people".
Under the title “Pakistan Navy ship arrives in Turkey for drill”, Turkish daily newspaper Yeni Safak (11.11.19, https://www.yenisafak.com/en/world/pakistan-navy-ship-arrives-in-turkey-for-drill-3504856) reports that Pakistan’s Navy ship Alamgir arrived in the Aknaz Naval Base in the Aegean Sea off Mugla's coast on Saturday for a 12-day multinational maritime exercise.
It will participate in the Dogu Akdeniz-19 (Eastern Mediterranean) drill which will run through Nov. 2o. The aim of the exercise is to operate in a multi-threat environment while providing advance training opportunities to the participants, it added.
The naval forces of the U.S., Turkey, Pakistan, Canada, Bulgaria, Romania, Italy, Greece and Spain are also participating in the drill.
“The ship will also participate in Operation Mediterranean Shield which is an ongoing operation in East Mediterranean Sea conducted jointly by various regional Allied navies headed by Turkish Navy,” said the statement by the Pakistani Navy.
Turkish navy vessels also participate in drills hosted by Pakistan.
Under the title “All eyes will be on Washington this week”, columnist Serkan Demirtas, writing in Turkish daily newspaper Hurriyet Dail News (11.11.19, http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/opinion/serkan-demirtas/all-eyes-will-be-on-washington-this-week-148529) reports that although President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has confirmed his visit to the United States on Nov 13, there is an extremely negative atmosphere in Washington, D.C., against the Turkish government, particularly after the military operation into northeastern Syria targeting the YPG.
Demirtas further wrote: “This negativity has been very visible in the U.S. Congress whose members have overwhelmingly passed a bipartisan bill on Oct. 29 to punish Turkey with heavy sanctions for its military operation in Syria. They have also adopted a non-binding resolution that recognizes the mass killings of the Armenians during World War I as genocide, drawing a strong reaction from Ankara.
Although tentatively scheduled for this week, the Senate Foreign Relations Committee has delayed action on the sanctions bill to avoid a major diplomatic problem during President Erdoğan’s trip to Washington.
This delay, however, will just provide temporary relief because members of Congress are overwhelmingly united in moving forward with punitive actions against the Turkish government. Many believe that Trump will be reluctant in trying to change the anti-Turkish environment in Congress at a time when he struggles to keep his Republican fellows on his side to avoid a potential impeachment.
President Erdoğan will also press Trump to stop the court case claiming that Halkbank - one of the largest banks – aided in a scheme to evade sanctions against Iran. The Halkbank case will be another issue on which Erdoğan will unlikely hear a positive response from the U.S. President.”
Stressing that the Erdogan-Trump meeting on Syria issue will not lead to a substantial change in the U.S. position that eyes continued support to the YPG, Demirtas noted that “Erdoğan and Trump will sure review all the other aspects of the bilateral relations, including efforts to increase the trade volume to $100 billion and enhance economic ties in general as well as ways to overcome the problems concerning the cooperation in the field of the defence industry. (…) Turkey’s return to the F-35 project would be possible only after it found an efficient formula to overcome the problems stemming from its deployment of Russian S-400 air defence systems on its soil. This will also determine how long the Trump administration will delay the implementation of the sanctions against Turkey as stated under the CAATSA, Countering America’s Adversaries through Sanctions Act.
Given all these reasons, making a breakthrough on the Turkish-American impasse will be a difficult one for the two Presidents in the case they would fail to bring about a new and constructive vision for the future of the ties.”
According to Turkish news portal Ahval (11.11.19, https://ahvalnews.com/turkish-opposition/erdogan-targets-good-party-shatter-turkish-opposition-bloc-columnist), the Turkish President and leader of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) leader Recep Tayyip Erdoğan is trying to break up the opposition bloc, columnist Abdulkadir Selvi wrote in pro-government Hürriyet newspaper.
Erdoğan has repeatedly spoken of his intention to weaken the opposition Nation Alliance, made up of the secularist Republican People’s Party, nationalist Good Party and Islamist Felicity Party.
With unofficial support from the pro-Kurdish Peoples' Democratic Party, the opposition alliance dealt a huge blow to the AKP in this year’s local elections, winning five of Turkey’s largest provinces including Istanbul and Ankara.
Erdogan aims to put an end to the unified front against him by pulling away the Good Party, which emerged as a splinter faction from AKP allied far-right Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) in 2017, Selvi wrote.
"But the attitude of MHP leader Devlet Bahçeli on the Good Party will be important," writes Selvi, who is known for his close links with the ruling coalition.
Meanwhile, Erdoğan is also developing a strategy to see off challenges from dissenters in his own party, who are being drawn to two new political movements led by former AKP heavyweights. The President will meet and try to win over former Deputy Prime Minister Ali Babacan, who resigned from the AKP to head one of the new movements this year, Selvi writes.
"Can he succeed? It seems a long shot. But he is also trying to motivate the AKP organisation against the new parties," Selvi said.
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