GCC Press Review | 13 Mar 2019 |

Front Page Headlines

Politis

They can’t even convince the useful idiots

EDEK and Eleni Theocharous are asking for explanations from ELAM, the rest keep mum. Reasonable questions on the severity of the health reasons for which they did not serve in the army. ELAM is trying to change the subject.

  • Cyprus problem: Waiting for Lute

Phileleftheros

Guarantees are not on the agenda

Cavusoglu presented the Turkish framework on the Cyprus problem to Lute. The Turkish side is putting pressure on Nicosia.

  • Fire in Brussels over Turkey: EPP (European People’s Party) seeks termination of accession process

Haravgi

Harris (Georgiades) unabashed

Harris: “Our decision was positive and beneficial!” –  AKEL: “The findings (on the Co-op’s demise) ought to be discussed in parliament” – DIKO: “Sacking the Finance Minister is imperative”.

  • Cavusoglu-Katrougalos discuss the Cyprob. Andros Kyprianou urges Nicos Anastasiades

Cyprus Mail

‘Credibility at risk over Co-op report’

Without finance minister resigning government can’t control banking problems says DIKO.

Alithia

Hot probe on the loans of politicians

The Audit Service launched probe on the Co-op

  • Cyprus problem: Nicosia waiting to hear on Lute’s arrival
  • Anastasiades-Akinci: Meeting on the stadium stands

Main News

Nicosia expects to hear about Lute’s contacts with guarantors

Alithia, Cyprus Mail, Haravgi, Phileleftheros, Politis
Negotiations Process

OVERVIEW

Nicosia is now waiting for the return to the island of UN envoy Jane Holl Lute following her meeting this week with Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu, the last of this round of contacts with the guarantors as part of the effort to draft the terms of reference for the resumption of the talks.

The government criticised Turkey on Tuesday for preparing the ground for an alternative settlement to the Cyprus problem after Cavusoglu tweeted that all options were on the table for a permanent solution, the Cyprus Mail reported.

A government source told the Cyprus News Agency (CNA) that Cavusoglu makes sure to set the ground for a solution at every opportunity outside UN parameters by referring to other options despite the fact he does not rule out a federal solution, according to the daily. The same source said that this was worrying, and it may mean that a special understanding on the terms of reference should be made.

Government Spokesman Prodromos Prodromou said that now Lute had concluded this round of contacts with the guarantor powers Nicosia is waiting for her visit to the island as had been agreed with Anastasiades. He reiterated that the government does not agree with Turkey’s demand that the talks begin after June.

“The negotiations could have started months ago,” Prodromou told the CNA, Cyprus Mail reports.

The terms of reference, he said, should also include the six parameters of the UN Secretary-General’s framework, including those relating to security and guarantees and the withdrawal of the occupation army.

Prodromou also said that Greek Foreign Minister Giorgos Katrougalos, who is to meet with his Turkish counterpart to discuss the Cyprus issue on Wednesday, will inform Nicosia of what has been discussed, the daily said.

According to Phileleftheros, Cavusoglu’s tweet made it obvious that, for Ankara, the issues of security and guarantees are off the agenda. This puts pressure on Nicosia which has been focusing lately on keeping security and guarantees on the Cyprob agenda.

But Nicosia will draw its conclusions after Wednesday’s meeting between the Greek and Turkish FMs and Lute’s return to the island, the daily said.

Katrougalos will meet his Turkish counterpart, Mevlut Cavusoglu, on Wednesday in Brussels and on March 21 in Antalya, according to Alithia.

Katrougalos said on Tuesday that Greece wants a solution to the Cyprus problem “yesterday”.

Speaking to Real FM, the Greek FM said that developments in the Cyprob are not up to the Greek and GC sides but depend on whether the Turkish side shows greater creativity and proves that it wants to meet its responsibilities deriving from UN resolutions.

AKEL leader Andros Kyprianou said that the government ought to set aside communication tricks and focus on how substantive talks can resume, Haravgi reports.

Referring to recent statements by Anastasiades that he was concerned over the current stalemate, Kyprianou said that what matters is for this concern to make the president turn to the right direction and take initiatives that would put pressure on Turkey to come to the negotiations table with the right approach as regards a Cyprus settlement.

He said that the essence of the Cyprus problem is not trying to convince public opinion that Turkey is intransigent and aggressive but, how one creates conditions that either allow for a solution or leave Turkey exposed, the daily reported.

KEY ACTORS
Prodromou
>>
Negotiations could have started months ago. Don’t agree with Turkey’s demand to start after June.
>> ToR must include six parameters of Guterres framework, including security & guarantees and the withdrawal of occupation army.

Katrougalos (Greece)
>> Greece wants a solution to the Cyprus problem the soonest possible.
>> Lack of progress is due to Turkey’s lack of creativity. Turkey also needs to prove willingness to fulfil its responsibilities as set in UN resolutions.

Kyprianou (AKEL)
>>
The government ought to focus on how to overcome stalemate and resume substantive talks.
>> Anastasiades should put pressure on Turkey to come to negotiations table with the right approach.
>> Essence of Cyprob is not to convince public of Turkey’s intransigence but to create conditions that either allow for a solution or leave Turkey exposed.


Cypriot MEPs take stand on Turkey EU accession report

Phileleftheros
EU Matters, Regional/International Relations

OVERVIEW

Cypriot MEPs on Tuesday criticised the European People’s Party (EPP) for expressing the view that accession talks with Turkey ought to be terminated while at the same time favouring an upgraded Customs Union.

During discussion at the plenary session of the European Parliament on the 2018 Report on Turkey, ahead of Wednesday’s vote on the report, the Cypriot MEPs, in their majority, voiced their opposition to the EPP’s position.

The latter is calling for the termination of accession talks with Turkey, while the Socialists and Democrats (S&D) insist on formal suspension of the procedure but keeping the door open, Phileleftheros reports.

AKEL MEPs, Takis Hadjigeorgiou and Neoklis Sylikiotis, speaking on behalf of the  European United Left (GUE/NGL), criticised the EPP over its contradictory stance since, on the one hand it is calling for termination of the accession process, but on the other hand, it supports an upgraded Customs Union agreement with Turkey without any preconditions.

Sylikiotis called on MEPs to vote down the reference to an upgraded Customs Union agreement.

EDEK MEP Demetris Papadakis (S&D) also criticised the EPP, echoing his AKEL colleagues. He said there can be no Customs Union upgrade, which means financial gain, for Ankara without any obligations. He recalled that Turkey occupies part of Cyprus and informed his colleagues of Turkish threats within the island’s EEZ.

DIKO’s Costas Mavrides (S&D) said that Turkey did not fulfill any of its obligations toward Cyprus.

Independent MEP and head of the Solidarity Movement, Eleni Theocharous, who is a member of the European Conservatives and Reformists, said she would vote down the report because it is lying about the fact a “so-called agreement” was reached at Crans-Montana.

The report legitimates Cyprus’ occupation and calls for an upgraded Customs Union despite the fact Ankara has not applied the existing one, Phileleftheros reports her saying.

KEY ACTORS
AKEL, EDEK, Solidarity Movement

>> No to an upgraded Customs Union agreement with Turkey.

Theocharous (Solidarity Movement)

>> The Report on Turkey’s reference to a so-called agreement at Crans-Montana is a lie. It also legitimates the occupation of Cyprus.  
>> Ankara has not applied the existing Customs Union agreement.


Two leaders to attend peace football match in Pyla

Alithia, Haravgi
CBMs

OVERVIEW

Anastasiades and Akinci are to attend a football match on March 19 in Pyla between two Famagustian football clubs, Magusa and Nea Salamina.

The two football clubs received a Stelios bicommunal award last year. The match is being organised by Peace and Sport and the Stelios Philanthropic Foundation and is supported by the European Parliament Office in Cyprus and the European Commission Representation in Cyprus.
For security reasons, entrance will be allowed only to members of the public who have reserved a seat.


CMP to seek information on burial sites in the UK

Cyprus Mail, Haravgi, Phileleftheros
Human Rights

OVERVIEW

Members of the Committee on Missing Persons (CMP) plan to visit Britain next week to meet various UK government departments, agencies and NGOs and to interview British Cypriots in their search for information on burial sites.

The CMP members will seek assistance in collecting information concerning people missing since 1963- 64 and 1974, from various archives and files in the UK. GC and TC members, Nestoras Nestoros and Gulden Plumer Kucuk, will carry out confidential individual meetings with members of the Cypriot community in the UK who can offer valuable information to them.
The Committee believes that they can access important information in cooperation with the Cypriot community in the UK, to help in identifying missing persons and possible burial locations, thus offering some answers and closure to the relatives of the missing.


‘The work of the technical committees aims to facilitate a solution’

Haravgi, Phileleftheros
Negotiations Process, CBMs

OVERVIEW

TC coordinator for the technical committees and advisor of Mustafa Akinci on issues of history and political affairs, Meltem Onurkan Samani, said on Tuesday that TC effective participation and political equality are essential, the two dailies report.

During a programme on Bayrak TV, Samani said that Akinci was not against solution models that do not negate political equality.

Samani said that statements by the GC side on new ideas suggest models that sustain the status quo and self-governing areas that are not based on political equality, Phileleftheros reports.

As regards the handing over of TC artists’ work currently in the archives of CyBC as part of confidence-building measures agreed by the two leaders last month, Samani said that the work of TC artists is very important for the identity and cultural heritage of the TCs.

The decisions of the two leaders of February 26 are an example on how public opinion could be positively influenced when there is political will and solutions are found to benefit both sides, she said, according to Phileleftheros.

The aim of the technical committees, she said, is to facilitate efforts for the solution, not to reinforce the current situation.

Samani highlighted the importance of cooperation, noting that trust is strengthened by cooperation. A federal culture is created through sharing and solidarity, she added.

The Technical Committees on Culture and Economic and Commercial Matters are to meet on Wednesday to discuss the exchange of GC paintings and TC archival material, as well as the connection of the electricity grid and interoperability of mobile phones, Phileleftheros reports.