Turkish Cypriot newspaper Kıbrıs Postası (21.11.19, https://www.kibrispostasi.com/c35-KIBRIS_HABERLERI/n303858-cumhurbaskani-akinci-siyasi-parti-liderleriyle-bir-araya-geldi) reports that Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci met this morning with the leaders of the Turkish Cypriot political parties represented in the “assembly”, prior to the informal tripartite meeting to be held in Berlin on 25 November between the community leaders and the UNSG.
Ersin Tatar, self-styled prime minister and leader of the National Unity Party (UBP), Kudret Ozersay, self-styled foreign minister and chairman of the People’s Party (HP), Tufan Erhurman, leader of the Republican Turkish Party (CTP), Cemal Ozyigit, leader of the Social Democracy Party (TDP), Serdar Denktas, “deputy” of the Democratic Party (DP) and Erhan Arikli, chairman of the settlers’ Revival Party (YDP) attended the meeting.
The paper publishes the statements made by the political party leaders after the meeting as follows:
Tatar (https://www.kibrispostasi.com/c35-KIBRIS_HABERLERI/n303861-tatar-biz-kibris-turkunun-goruslerini-yansitiyoruz-akinci-kendi-gorusunu) said that they had reiterated their views. He noted that the tripartite meeting would be informal and added that he saw some difficulties on the issue of political equality. According to Tatar, the issue of guarantees would not be discussed for now. “There might be some problems in the UN parameters, but what the Turks of Cyprus think is important”, he argued, adding that the issue of federation could be discussed if an agreement was reached on the terms of reference.
Tatar also alleged that President Anastasiades took the negotiations seven years back and claimed that “if some things will be discussed, everything should be on the table”. Arguing that he reflected the view of the Turkish Cypriots, Tatar concluded claiming: “We are reflecting the general view of the people. And Mr Akinci is conveying his own view. He says that he does this based on the power he had received”.
In his statements, Ozersay (https://www.kibrispostasi.com/c35-KIBRIS_HABERLERI/n303863-ozersay-siyasi-esitlik-kadar-iki-kesimlilik-de-onemlidir) said that there was no agreement yet between the sides and added that “a meeting could be held without an agreement, but this is not a correct approach”. Reiterating that he expected no result from the negotiations, Ozersay argued that efforts were exerted to “degrade” the issue only to political equality and added that bi-zonality was at least as important as political equality. He alleged that the Greek Cypriot side experienced difficulties on the issue of sharing the wealth and administration and this is why a distance towards a federal partnership could not be covered.
Speaking after the meeting, Erhurman (https://www.kibrispostasi.com/c35-KIBRIS_HABERLERI/n303864-erhurman-bizim-olumlu-beklentimiz-5li-gorusmenin-kapisinin-aralanmasidir) underlined the importance of the meeting in Berlin and pointed out the determination of UNSG Antonio Guterres expressed in many statements after Crans Montana for a result oriented process. “We saw that the UN Security Council’s parameters have been affirmed once more”, he said adding that “we are expecting Guterres to stand at this point in Berlin”. Noting that the determination to be exhibited by the UNSG’s in Berlin was important, Erhurman said that their positive expectation was for the door of a five-party meeting to “open partly”.
On his part, Ozyigit claimed that President Anastasiades had withdrawn from the negotiations for “his own elections” and this caused a loss of two years. Recalling that UNSG’s special adviser on Cyprus Jane Holl Lute had held many meetings with the two community leaders on the terms of reference, Ozyigit said that the process should be clarified.
He added: “In Berlin it will not be said ‘it is over’ or ‘it will continue’. Perhaps things will not reach the point of taking a decision. But will the door of a five-party meeting open partly? This is important”.
Arguing that President Anastasiades should show determination, Ozyigit claimed: “Rotating presidency and effective participation in the decisions are gaining importance especially during the past few days. No one wants open ended negotiations anymore. There is nothing which has not been debated. The last remaining obstacles should be lifted and the door of a new effective negotiating process should open partly. We wish success to Akinci and his team in this direction”.
In his statements, Denktas said that in Berlin it would be seen whether a five party meeting could take place. “The main thing is that no matter how much we try, if third countries do not want equality, things could reach nowhere”, he argued claiming that “we should not waste time in vain”.
Finally, Arikli (https://www.kibrispostasi.com/c35-KIBRIS_HABERLERI/n303867-arikli-berlinden-pek-de-bir-sey-beklememek-gerek) said that they obtained the necessary information from Akinci and added that “it seems that nothing should be expected” from the meeting in Berlin. Arikli argued that there should not be many hopes for a five-party meeting and claimed: “Guterres should ask Anastasiades what he thinks on three points. If Anastasiades accepts these, we could discuss the next issues. If this process will continue for a long time, the Turkish Cypriot side should take a decision on this point. We should follow the process all together in unity and togetherness”.
Turkish Cypriot daily Afrika (21.11.19) publishes a new opinion poll according to which the Turkish Cypriot leader Mustafa Akinci is leading the “election race”.
The poll, which was conducted by the Centre for Migration, Identity and Rights Studies (CMRIS), between 15-25 of October using the face-to-face method, shows that Akinci is increasing his percentages to 38,64%, followed by the leader of the National Unity Party (UBP) and “prime minister” Ersin Tatar with 17,92%, the leader of the Republican Turkish Party (CTP) Tufan Erhurman with 15,82%, the leader of the People’ Party (HP) and “foreign minister” Kudret Ozersay with 7,51%, the “deputy” with the Democratic Party (DP) Serdar Denktas with 5,21% and the leader of the Revival Party Erhar Aikli (Tr. Note: The party of the settlers) with 2,9%.
Turkish Cypriot daily Diyalog (21.11.19) reports that the “minister of interior”, Aysegul Baybars, stated that 3,081 “TRNC citizenships” were granted in the first 10 months of 2019.
Baybars who made statements to Diyalog, said that a lot of applications are pending and stated that during the last 22 months that she is serving as “minister”, 5,422 persons had benefited from the “citizenship right”. She also said that there are a lot of applications by wives and children because of the “citizenships” granted previously.
As she said, the “citizenship” is granted to everyone is entitled to get one. She added that right to apply has everyone who has been living in the breakaway regime for 11 years continually; therefore they have 11 stamps in their “passport”.
Turkish Cypriot newspaper Güneş (21.11.19) reports that Ersan Saner, general secretary of the National Unity Party (UBP), has alleged that just like many states in the world had come out of other states, the same thing happened in Cyprus. “This reality should be accepted”, claimed Saner in statements to GÜNEŞ TV yesterday.
Saner said that he expected no result from the informal tripartite meeting to be held in Berlin on 25 November between the community leaders and the UNSG and claimed:
“I expect nothing because the main philosophy of the Greek Cypriot side is to not want to share absolutely anything with the Turkish Cypriots. When we see from 1968, talks have been held under the UN umbrella. These issues continue in six chapters. Which of these has been solved and we will expect a rabbit to come out from the hat? I read the statements made by the Greek Cypriots. […] There is no change in their stance. There is no need to have any expectation from the UN either. Now we should say many thanks for the situation we are living in. After 1974 the Turkish Cypriots obtained the opportunity to move freely in the northern part of Cyprus”.
Turkish Cypriot newspaper Haberatör (21.11.19) reports that Mehmet Cakici, chairman of the Communal Liberation Party – New Forces (TKP-YG), has said that the communities in Cyprus were the ones to decide for the solution on the island. In a written statement regarding the tripartite meeting to be held in Berlin on 25 November, Cakici noted that they understood the lack of trust and worry increased in both communities prior to the Berlin meeting and added that “the escalation of tensions plays only into the extremists’ hand”.
Cakici underlined the need of avoiding actions and statements which increase tension and added that “the formula for the solution of the Cyprus problem passes through a solution which both communities could accept”. He also noted that preconditions should be avoided before going to the tripartite meeting and a constructive stance should be exhibited for “formulating the minimum foundations of the terms of reference”.
“In parallel to this”, we think that importance should also be attached to confidence building measures in order to overcome the negative climate and the lack of confidence between the two communities”, he argued and added: “It should not be forgotten that the communities in Cyprus are those to decide for the solution in Cyprus”.
Turkish Cypriot daily Nacak (21.11.19) reports that the chairman of the Great Unity Party (BBP) in Turkey Mustafa Destici condemned strongly the burning of the “TRNC flag” by members of nationalist right-wing party ELAM, claiming that these attacks are taking place due to the fact that the “existence of the TRNC” constitutes an obstacles to the dreams of the Greek Cypriots.
In a press conference at his party headquarters, Destici referred, inter alia, to the Cyprus problem and said that western countries together with Greece and the Greek Cypriot side have never accepted the “TRNC’s” unilateral declaration of independence. He claimed that their aim has become clear recently with the current developments. “Their goal is the natural resources in the Eastern Mediterranean. Thus, the Turkish existence there, and therefore, the TRNC’s existence prevent their desires. This is the reason why these attacks are taking place. And the recent incident with the burning of the TRNC’ flag in the Greek Cypriot sector is an outcome of this”, Destici said, condemning the incident. “By burning the TRNC flag you would never eliminate either the TRNC or force the Turkish armed forces to withdraw from the island. If they continue, we remind them of 1974. The whole world should know that we will never allow for Turkey’s and Turkish Cypriot’s rights on the natural resources to be violated, nor would we allow the existence of Turkey in the island to end”, Destici further argued.
Meanwhile, according to illegal Bayrak television (21.11.19-https://www.brtk.net/akarbu-irkci-saldirilar-kktc-bayraginin-adada-dalgalanmasina-asla-engel-olamayacak/), Turkey’s National Defense Minister Hulusi Akar condemned strongly the “burning of the TRNC flag”, stating the following: “We strongly condemn the burning of the TRNC flag. These racist attacks cannot prevent the TRNC flag from waving on the island”, Akar argued.
Turkish Cypriot newspaper Vatan (21.11.19) reports that Turkey’s Tennis Federation and so-called northern Cyprus tennis federation have signed a “protocol”, which gives the right to two Turkish Cypriot tennis players in each age category to participate in the tournaments, in which the members of the Turkish National Teams are selected. In a statement issued by the Turkish Cypriot “federation” it is said that in this manner the Turkish Cypriot tennis players were given the opportunity to become a member of Turkish National Teams and players of the Turkish National Olympic Committee.
Turkish daily Hurriyet (20.11.19-http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/erdogan-calls-for-more-investment-in-turkey-148897) reports that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Nov. 20 called on entrepreneurs to invest more in Turkey, saying the country’s financial troubles are now fading away.
“We are dispelling the dark clouds over our country by declining our inflation to single-digit figures and rapidly decreasing interest rates. Hopefully, 2020 will be a year in which interest rates will decrease even further,” Erdogan said.
Erdogan’s remarks came during a speech at a meeting with ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) provincial heads.
“I am calling on our enterprises. Come and invest [in Turkey]. I am calling on every industry. Regardless of the sector, come and invest [in Turkey]. The doors of our banks are now open to you, and the interest rates are clear as day,” he said.
Erdoğan said that Turkey is now taking steps in the economy, by using its own currency rather than becoming indebted over foreign currencies.
“The increase in property, automobile and domestic appliance sales, that had declined because of last year’s troubles, is an indicator of economic recovery,” Erdoğan said.
“I am calling on our investors: Don’t worry, don’t hesitate. Please, continue to invest in your own industries,” he added.
“Before 2002, Turkey was only investing 70 billion Turkish Liras (roughly $12.3 billion) annually while in 2019, its investment volume has reached over 1 trillion liras (around $176 billion)”, Erdoğan said.
Underlining that the Turkish economy has experienced a growth of 5.6%, on average, between 2003 and 2018, Erdogan conveyed that the country is the 13th largest economy in the world, with respect to its purchasing power parity.
Erdogan also once again underlined that when the AKP came to power, Turkey’s debt to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) stood at $23.5 billion. He added that the AKP government has closed this debt and left the IMF days of Turkey behind. “We do not have anything to do with the IMF; we are enough for each other,” he said. “We solved all these problems with the motto ‘the state cannot be indebted to its nation,’” Erdoğan added.
The president also criticized the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) over their meeting with IMF officials.
The top IMF officials met with representatives of the CHP and İYİ (Good) Party in September as part of its Article 4 consultation, an annual economic assessment of each of the fund’s member countries. The meeting has drawn accusations by the government that it was a “secret meeting.”
“They [the CHP] were advising us to borrow loans from the IMF. You know they held a secret meeting with [IMF officials] and then said, ‘it’s okay to do so,’” he said.
Erdogan also slammed CHP for “attacking” a woman Deputy of the AKP during a heated argument that broke out regarding the late former Prime Minister Bülent Ecevit.
Tensions rose in the parliament on Nov. 19 between AKP and CHP deputies concerning a photo of Ecevit taken with former U.S. President Bill Clinton.
The Parliament should give the necessary response to the CHP deputies, especially because they “attacked a woman deputy,” Erdogan said.
“Sending apologies is not an adequate step taken towards reconciliation”, Erdogan said, adding that punishment should be given. “They have done all kinds of shameless things under the roof of this Parliament”, Erdogan added.
Ankara Anatolia news agency (20.11.19-https://www.aa.com.tr/en/politics/turkey-us-agreement-on-syria-has-to-be-fulfilled/1651270) reports that the Turkish Foreign Minister said on Wednesday that there are violations of the agreement done by Turkey and the U.S. over northern Syria and he communicated these to his US counterpart.
Cavusoglu met with his US counterpart Mike Pompeo in Brussels on the sidelines of NATO Foreign Ministers meeting
In a press conference Cavusoglu held in Brussels, he commented on the content of his meeting with Pompeo.
Cavusoglu said that there are violations of the agreement done by Turkey and the US regarding northern Syria. He added that he spoke with Pompeo about the violations and terror attacks that YPG/PKK is doing in northern Syria and said that the agreement has to be fulfilled.
Cavusoglu said further Turkey and the U.S. have different opinions over Turkey's purchase of Russian S-400 air defense systems. "There will be a meeting over this issue in Ankara on Friday," Cavusoglu said.
Cavusoglu also met with his UK counterpart Dominic Raab, the President of EU Parliament David Sassoli and NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg at the sidelines of the meeting.
On his meeting with President of EU Parliament, Sassoli, Cavusoglu said that their meeting was longer than expected as they discussed various issues including Syria, migration, Cyprus and fight against terrorism.
“Terrorists including PKK members as well as FETO members are teeming in EU Parliament and we have shared our opinion on this issue with him,” he said.
Meanwhile, Turkish daily Sabah (21.11.19-https://www.dailysabah.com/diplomacy/2019/11/20/fm-cavusoglu-slams-ep-head-sassoli-over-eus-insincerity-hypocrisy-says-he-distorts-facts) reports that Çavuşoğlu criticized the European Parliament President David Sassoli over the European Union's "insincerity and hypocrisy" and said that he distorted what actually had been discussed during their meeting that took place late Wednesday.
"In a meeting with Cavusoglu, Turkey Foreign Affairs Minister, I reiterated the EU's strong condemnation of Turkish military intervention in northeast Syria. It is an unacceptable violation of international law that undermines the stability and security of the region," Sassoli said in a tweet, which drew a quick response from Cavusoglu.
"Here is another example of the insincerity and hypocrisy of the EU. The President of the European Parliament shared topics that were not said to my face. Appalled that the person who represents the European peoples distorts the content of the meeting," Cavusoglu said.
Turkish daily Hurriyet Daily news (20.11.19-http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/hdp-calls-for-early-poll-148921) reports that the Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) called on Nov. 20 for an early election but ruled out withdrawing from Parliament to protest the government’s dismissal of dozens of its mayors who were elected earlier in March elections.
“The ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) and the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP), were stealing the will of the people by appointing trustees”, said the HDP in a statement released after a meeting.
“We say ‘early election’ for the people of Turkey to be rid of the AKP-MHP authority. This is a call for confrontation. We’re saying bring it on,” the party said.
“We call on all of the opposition to unite around this request for an early election and to take action,” it said, also appealing for a campaign of civil disobedience.
The party discussed withdrawing from parliament after several party members had called for the HDP to withdraw from the national Parliament or from local assemblies which the party still holds.
The HDP said it had paid “heavy prices” to achieve gains and “will not withdraw from any area of struggle.”
The Turkish government has removed 24 mayors of the HDP since August, mainly due to alleged links to terrorism, and appointed replacements to run their municipalities.
Turkish daily Sabah (20.11.19-https://www.dailysabah.com/war-on-terror/2019/11/20/hdp-figures-including-province-chair-arrested-in-terror-probe) reports that at least 12 PKK-linked suspects, including the pro-PKK Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP) Gaziantep provincial chairman Müslüm Kılıç and HDP's regional affiliate Democratic Regions Party's (DBP) provincial head Abdullah İnce were arrested on Wednesday within the scope of anti-terror operations.
A total of 52 suspects were placed into custody as part of the investigation. Of the 18 suspects that were forwarded to the courthouse, 12 were arrested while the other six were released under the condition of judicial control.
Another 10 suspects were brought to the court under broad security measures after their procedures at the police station were completed. The processing of the other 24 suspects continues.
"Forty-two out of the 94 mayors that were dismissed in the previous term were punished with 286 years (in prison)," Interior Minister Süleyman Soylu said on Thursday in the Parliament.
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