No. 745 27.11.2019
A. Turkish Cypriot Press
B. Turkish Press
Turkish Cypriot newspaper Kıbrıs Postası (26.11.19, https://www.kibrispostasi.com/c36-TURKIYE/n304338-ibrahim-kalin-turkiyenin-politikasi-kibrista-esit-haklara-sahip-bir-yapi) reports that Ibrahim Kalin, Spokesman of the Turkish Presidency, has argued that Turkey’s policy in Cyprus was in favour of a structure in which the two communities would have equal rights.
Addressing a forum in Berlin, Kalin reiterated the allegation that the Greek Cypriot side exhibited an intransigent stance. Referring to the tripartite meeting held in Berlin between the two community leaders and the UNSG, Kalin claimed:
“Our approach in the Cyprus problem has been from the very beginning that open ended negotiations would not give a result. Talks had been carried out at the Crans Montana for the last time. Everyone knows our contribution and the one of the Turkish Cypriot side. The UN also knows it very well. They also say that the Greek Cypriot side exhibited an intransigent stance on this issue. A negotiation from now on should be a negotiating process in which the road map should definitely not be open-ended, which should be separated to stages, but with concrete parameters, that is, the principles on which it is based should be extremely clear”.
Arguing that discussing the same things would have no other result than waste of time, Kalin claimed:
“We should take as basis a framework which establishes a structure in which both communities to have equal rights, the Turkish Cypriots to be treated as equal inhabitants of the island and to be able to use their political and economic rights. This is our point of view. It is not possible for us, of course, to accept alternatives other than this”.
Alleging that Turkey has taken steps and exerted efforts for the solution in Cyprus, Kalin claimed:
“Important lessons could be drawn from here. When the Cyprus problem is not solved, the Eastern Mediterranean, the natural gas reserves here continue to be a problem. However, unfortunately, instead of a neutral and constructive stance on this issue, the EU countries exhibit a stance which does not contribute to the process here, supporting the Greek Cypriot side saying that it is a member country. However, if, of course, the conditions are appropriate for the solution of the Cyprus problem, if the framework is put in the right manner, we will be in such an effort and we will support it. […]”
Turkish Cypriot newspaper Kıbrıs Postası (27.11.19) reports that Turkish Cypriot leader, Mustafa Akinci, has said that the “realistic expectation” regarding a five-party conference on the Cyprus problem is “the resumption of an activity after spring”. In statements at the illegal airport in Tymbou after his return from Berlin, Akinci noted that the UNSG had referred to “an appropriate stage” as regards the five-party conference and recalled that “elections” will be held in April 2020 in the occupied area of Cyprus and in the UK next month. He argued that there was also a “newly elected’ Greek government and Turkey had its own agenda. “Guterres gave the message not to be in a rush for the five-party meeting. The realistic expectation is the resumption of an activity after spring”, he added.
Replying to a question, Akinci said that he had not held any meeting with Turkish officials prior to Berlin and added that he was always holding contacts with the “ambassador” of Turkey in the occupied part of Nicosia.
Referring to the tripartite meeting in Berlin, Akinci described it as “a positive step” and said: “I want to note that the principles and concepts which we support are included in the documents of Guterres”.
Drawing attention to the fact that a bi-zonal, bi-communal federation has once more been noted as the target, Akinci argued that the Turkish Cypriot “people” did not want the division of the island.
Noting that the negotiations would not be open-ended any more, Akinci said: “The strategy will be determined first. The fact that the process should be result-oriented was included in the statements”.
Akinci described as “extremely important” the UNSG’s interest and participation in the process and recalled that Antonio Guterres was exerting effort for the conclusion of the terms of reference and a five-party conference afterwards. Arguing that “various speculations are made on this issue”, Akinci added that when we say 5+1, we imply the two communities in Cyprus, the three guarantor powers and the UN.
Reiterating that a collective effort was needed for the solution of the Cyprus problem, Akinci said that the support of the UN, the EU, the guarantor powers and the international community in general was very important. “The most important thing, however, is the support, the backing of the two communities to the process”, he added.
Turkish Cypriot newspaper Kıbrıs Postası (26.11.19, hhttps://www.kibrispostasi.com/c36-TURKIYE/n304337-turkiye-mgkda-kibris-ve-dogu-akdeniz-ele-alindi) reports that the Turkish National Security Council (NSC) convened on Tuesday presided by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan. The NCS discussed regional and global issues and mainly Cyprus and the Eastern Mediterranean.
In a written statement issued after the meeting, it is said that the NSC was briefed on the contacts held internationally. The statement also said that the “Peace Spring Operation”, as Turkey calls its invasion in Syria, would continue until it reached its aim and alleged that measures were taken not to harm civilians.
Turkish Cypriot newspaper Güneş (27.11.19) reports that, referring to the tripartite meeting held in Berlin between the two community leaders and the UNSG, Kudret Ozersay, self-styled foreign minister of the breakaway regime in the occupied area of the Republic of Cyprus, has alleged that the sides treated a process which was actually dead as if it was alive. “There is a corpse and no one dares to bury it. In my view, the whole issue is this”, he said in a post on the social media. Ozersay claimed that “just like the same train was going on the same rails and on the same road and did not reach anywhere, it will, unfortunately, not be able to reach anywhere, if someone does not dare to question this anomaly”.
Ozersay argued also that when the negotiations collapsed in 2017, the federal solution, the Guterres document, the agreements of the past and the UN Security Council Resolutions had been on the table. He reiterated that view that the problem derived from the disagreement on the issue of what these concepts, expressions and documents meant.
“The reference to the definition made for the political equality in the 1990s does not actually meet the demand put forward by the Turkish Cypriot side for some time now, because when the UN’s definition on the political equality was concretized, the ‘one positive vote’, to which the Turkish Cypriot side refers continuously is not met”, he said.
Turkish Cypriot daily Gunes (27.11.19) reports that Oguzhan Hasipoglu, “deputy” with the National Unity Party (UBP), evaluating the trilateral Berlin summit, alleged that nothing concrete has come up from the summit. He went on to accuse Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci for failing to develop a result-oriented negotiation technic during the last five years.
In a statement in the radio channel of the paper, Hasipoglu claimed that neither a structure nor a timetable of the negotiation process exists. Pointing out that the UN Secretary General has stated that he would do all necessary, without giving any concrete date, Hasipoglu said that Akinci leaves the door open for the resumption of the negotiation talks by trying to say that “we would complete this work after the elections”. “This is not right”, Hasipoglu argued.
He also stated that UBP cannot accept that the trilateral summit in Berlin was successful.
Turkish Cypriot daily Yeni Düzen (27.11.19) reports that the leader of the Republican Turkish Party (CTP), Tufan Erhurman, stated that two years were lost as regards the Cyprus problem after the Crans Montana summit.
He also said that the uncertainty continues after Berlin as regards the terms of reference, the conducting of strategical agreements, the five-party meeting, and the starting and completing of negotiations which will be end-oriented.
He added that an active foreign policy must be followed so that more time will not be lost.
Turkish Cypriot daily Kıbrıs (27.11.19) reports that Cemal Ozyigit, leader of the Socialist Democracy Party (TDP), stated that positive and important results came out of the three-party meeting in Berlin in the presence of the UN Secretary General.
Ozyigit who posted in social media, stated that the leaders of the two communities confirmed that the status quo is not viable. He also stated that after Berlin the “ambiguity” created both by the statements of President Nicos Anastasiades and of Turkish officials after Geneva, was eliminated. “Both sides confirmed that the road that will be followed will be a bi-zonal, bi-communal federation based on political equality”, he stated.
He also added that the rights and the safety of “sister Turkey” in Eastern Mediterranean, have great importance for them, and said that this is why the UN Secretary General should exert efforts for a five-party meeting to take place, as he promised.
Turkish Cypriot daily Vatan (27.11.19) reports that the chairman of the United Cyprus Party (BKP) Izzet Izcan described as very satisfactory the outcome of the tripartite summit in Berlin supporting that the road map for the process to proceed is set.
Pointing out to the importance of the UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres’ statement that the two leaders reaffirmed their commitment and determination to achieve a settlement based on a bi-zonal, bi-communal federation with political equality as set out in the relevant Security Council Resolutions, Izcan said that this was the most important part of the summit. He further added that after this statement, confederation or a two states solution prospects were lifted.
Izcan went on to say that on the current stage, the sides must show political willingness and make a good preparation for the five-party conference. “The main goal of BKP and all supports of peace should be an urgent agreement on the term of references and an urgent solution of the Cyprus problem”, Izcan said.
Turkish Cypriot daily Halkin Sesi (27.11.19) reports that the “deputy chairman” of the Revival Settler’s Party (YDP) Enver Ozturk, evaluating in a written statement the outcome of the trilateral summit in Berlin, alleged that during the summit nothing important and concrete was discussed but instead only the known indirect references were reiterated.
Ozturk stressed the need for Turkey, as a guarantor country not to allow at the current stage for a five-party conference to take place. He went on to claim that the trilateral summit has given a kiss of life to Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci for the forthcoming “presidential elections” that would take place next on April 2020.
Ozturk wondered further whether the Greek Cypriot leader, President Nicos Anastasiades has accepted the principle that the Turkish Cypriots would be equal partners of the founding state to be, and also asked “Whether Anastasiades has withdrawn from the position of zero troops and zero guarantee”.
Illegal Bayrak (27.11.19 https://www.brtk.net/?english_posts=tacoy-to-attend-35th-comcec-meeting) broadcast that the 35th Meeting of the Follow-up of the Standing Committee for Economic and Commercial Cooperation of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation is being held in Istanbul.
The “economy and energy minister” Hasan Taçoy will attend and address the event which is being held at the Istanbul Congress Centre.
Speaking at a program on BRT, Taçoy said as part of his contacts in Istanbul he will be meeting with Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and some Turkish Ministers.
He added that following his Istanbul contacts he will be going to Brussels.
Meanwhile, the “minister of agriculture and natural resources” Dursun Oğuz will also attend the Meeting in Istanbul.
Ankara Anatolia news agency (27.11.19 https://www.aa.com.tr/en/politics/turkey-operation-in-nsyria-to-go-on-until-goals-met/1656406) reports that “Turkey will press ahead with its anti-terror operation in northern Syria until its goals are reached”, said the country’s National Security Council on Tuesday.
Operation Peace Spring, launched last month, “which contributes to peace and stability in the region, will continue until it reaches its goals, while taking all precautions to prevent harm to civilians,” the Council, chaired by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, said in a statement after meeting at the presidential complex in Ankara.
The Council also said that Turkey expects the U.S. and Russia to fulfill their agreements with Ankara as soon as possible to clear terrorists from areas of northern Syria, including Tal Rifat and Manbij.
The Council reiterated that Turkey will continue its determined fight against the terror group Daesh/ISIS and is open to any cooperation towards that end.
“We call on the international community to support Turkey, which aims for the safe and voluntary return of Syrians to their country without any discrimination based on ethnicity or religion,” the Council also said.
Turkish daily Yeni Safak (27.11.19 https://www.yenisafak.com/en/world/turkey-says-it-made-no-promises-about-not-installing-russian-s-400s-3505950) reports that Turkey has given no promises to anyone about not installing or using Russian S-400 missile defence systems, Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu was cited as saying by state media on Tuesday, despite a row with the United States over the systems.
Washington has told Ankara that the S-400s pose a threat to its F-35 fighter jets and has warned its NATO ally that it will face U.S. sanctions unless it drops the Russian systems. It also removed Turkey from the F-35 jet programme, where Ankara was a buyer and manufacturer, in response to the Russian deal.
In addition, Turkish Hurriyet Daily News (27.11.19http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/ankara-washington-to-discuss-s-400-issue-next-week-149160) reports that Turkey and the U.S. will hold talks next week to overcome differences over Ankara’s purchase of the Russian S-400 air-defense system, Turkey's presidential spokesman said on Nov. 26.
Speaking at a panel discussion at the Berlin Foreign Policy Forum, spokesman Ibrahim Kalın underlined that Turkey’s use of the S-400s would not pose a threat to the F-35 fighter jet program, and that this could be proved by a detailed technical study.
“I’ve been mandated to follow this with my U.S. counterpart Robert O'Brien” -- the U.S. national security advisor -- he said.
“We will be talking about this next week at the NATO summit, we believe that those concerns can be addressed,” he said, referring to the Dec. 3-4 summit in London.
Kalın said the S-400 would be operated as a stand-alone platform and would not be integrated into NATO systems.
“We believe that the S-400s will not pose any threat to the F-35 program. We do not want the F-35 program to be jeopardized by anything,” he said, adding that Ankara wants to overcome differences with Washington and get back into the F-35 program.
Turkey's acquisition of the advanced Russian S-400 air-defense system prompted Washington to remove Turkey from the F-35 fifth-generation joint strike fighter program this July.
The U.S. maintains that the system could be used by Russia to covertly obtain classified details on the jet.
In 2017, Turkey decided to purchase the S-400 air-defense system from Russia after years of talks with the Obama administration to buy the Patriot missile system ended without a deal.
Turkish Ahval News portal (27.11.19 https://ahvalnews.com/ali-babacan/erdogans-ruling-akp-increasingly-eroding-says-turkeys-babacan) reports that Ali Babacan, Turkey's former deputy Prime Minister who has rolled his sleeves up to form a new party, said on Tuesday that the country’s ruling party was continuously eroding after years ago distancing itself from its founding principles.
He also said the party's problems had been affecting Turkey, pushing it toward a troubled phase.
"There has been a significant departure from the [party's] principles. This has become a national issue. Problems began to emerge in Turkey, we feel that the country entered a dark tunnel and we felt a serious responsibility toward our country," Babacan, a founding member of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP), said during a televised interview.
There was a serious deviation from transparency, accountability, pre decision-making consultation, basing decisions on rules and abstaining from arbitrariness within the AKP, Babacan said.
The former AKP Deputy Prime Minister still has many detractors on the streets of Turkey. A weak performance in this year’s local elections is thought by many to have prompted Babacan and another AKP stalwart, former prime minister Ahmet Davutoğlu, to create new political movements. Yet Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan still commands the personal support of a large number of Turks, resulting in his accusations that the former AKP politicians had “backstabbed him” seeking to “divide the faithful” has resonated with a sizeable portion of the population.
“My departure from the AKP was a process. As you know, I am one of the founders of the party. While we were [immersed] in the world of business, we decided that the climate of Feb. 28 [1997 post-modern coup]called for a new political movement and together with our friends, we founded the AKP. There were important principles and values in its founding. Firstly, we valued human beings, human rights and freedoms,’’ Babacan said, speaking on the initial ideas that fuelled the Islamist AKP.
Rumours that senior party members are preparing to part ways with the AKP emerged after the party presided over serious economic problems and faced stunning defeats in the March local elections. Many are reportedly dissatisfied with the new executive presidential system, which places sweeping executive powers in the hands of Erdoğan.
Turkish T24 news portal (27.11.19 https://www.t24.com.tr/haber/yerlerine-kayyim-atanan-3-hdp-li-belediye-baskani-tutuklandi,849758) reports that three pro-Kurdish People’s Democratic Party (HDP) district mayors were arrested by Turkish police in the southeastern province of Mardin “over terror charges”.
These are HDP’s co-mayor of Mardin’s Savur district Gülistan Öncü, co-mayor of Mazidağı district Nalan Özaydın and co-mayor Derik district Mülkiye Esmez.
They all had been removed from duty and replaced with government appointed officials earlier this year as part of the Turkish government restrictions on HDP.
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