TCC Press Review 17 Apr 2019

Front Page Headlines

Yenidüzen

Society angered

The incident concerning YDP (Rebirth Party) MP Bertan Zaroğlu and the police which made its way to the press was raised in parliament, causing tensions to flare. Defending himself, Zaroğlu said he would resign if his guilt was proven. Zaroğlu explained that he had rented the car seized by police on April 13. Zaroğlu said that his objection was not that he was fined but that the police officer had refused to give him the keys of the car rented out in his name. Prime Minister Erhürman said that the rules applied to everyone.

Kıbrıs Postası

While the world cries for Notre-Dame, look at what we do!

Despite all warnings and attempts, the Girne (Kyrenia) University campus construction, which belongs to Suat Günsel, still continues.

  • Major mistake to lift arms embargo – Foreign Ministry highlighted Greek Cypriot side’s efforts to lift the arms embargo in a statement issued on Tuesday.

Kıbrıs

14,726 graduates and 4,334 more on the way

Thousands have graduated from the 21 departments, which the State Planning Organization and the Education Ministry consider as surplus to needs. The private sector continues to search for qualified employees with degrees from these 21 departments. The conclusion is that youth do not prefer to work in the private sector.

  • Swindled the Development Bank – Three men produced forged documents to take out a five million Turkish Lira loan from the Development Bank in five instalments.

Havadis

Purchased in billions, sold in millions

TRNC total imports for 2018 at 1,816,400,000 USD while exports to Turkey and other countries amount to 100,900,000 USD.

  • Lightning strikes the south but electricity cut hits the north – Turkish Cypriot Electricity Authority (KIB-TEK) General Director announced that power cuts in the north were the result of a surge in the electricity grid in the south.

Diyalog

They woke up after a year

Three people who took out a five million Turkish Lira loan from the Development Bank with a forged letter of attorney in the name of Fatma Bayar were arrested

Afrika

Discrimination between Turks and Cypriots causes concern

Addressing parliament yesterday following tensions caused by MP Bertan Zaroğlu Tufan Erhürman warned that discriminating between Turks (from mainland Turkey) and Cypriots (TCs) was dangerous. Erhürman said that this was the worst thing that could be done to the country. He said there were not only citizens who came from Turkey but other countries as well.

Main News

Lifting US arms embargo a “grave mistake”

Kıbrıs Postası, Kıbrıs, Havadis, Diyalog
External Security, Regional/International relations

OVERVIEW

The Turkish Cypriot foreign ministry said that lifting the US arms embargoes on South Cyprus, which has been in force since 1987, would be a grave mistake.

In a statement issued on Tuesday, the foreign ministry warned that such a move would trigger a new arms race in the Eastern Mediterranean.

“Such actions would only serve to fan the flames in the region,” the statement read.

The ministry also said that the bill, submitted to the US Senate Foreign Affairs Committee and to the Congress Foreign Affairs Committee, was aggressive in nature and a threat to peace and stability on the island.

The bill, the statement said, was tabled with the excuse of protecting the US’ strategic, energy and security interests in the Eastern Mediterranean.

“As we have repeatedly emphasized the stable and tranquil environment on the island and in the region is extremely important for the Turkish Cypriot side. We are ready to take any collaborative steps in this direction. However, it must be known that we are very sensitive regarding any steps taken that might harm the current stable and peaceful situation on our island, which is already located in a very difficult region,” the statement added.

The ministry said it expected the US Congress, as in previous cases, to reject the bill at the committee level and instead encourage the sides to take steps that aimed at regional collaboration.

It said that it will continue to relay its sensitivities and the risks during its diplomatic contacts with representatives of other states and international organisation.

KEY ACTOR
Özersay
>>
Lifting US arms embargo would be a grave mistake, which poses threat of triggering new arms race in East Med & raising tensions.
>>
Stability of region extremely important for TC side, which is ready to take collaborative steps to preserve peace and stability.
>> US Congress should reject bill and instead encourage sides to take steps for regional collaboration.


ECHR asks Ankara for its defence

Havadis
Property

OVERVIEW

The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) asked the Turkish government to submit its defence against claims made by Ioannis Kyriakides of not receiving his agreed compensation from the Immovable Property Commission (IPC) and by K.V. Mediterranean Tours Limited over delays in its case concerning Varosha, Havadis reported on Wednesday.

According to ECHR documents, Ioannis Kyriakides reached an amicable agreement for a compensation payment of 428,360 GBP with the IPC on 13 February 2017. Kyriakides claims he has not been paid the compensation amount, therefore, arguing that Turkey has violated certain articles under the European Convention of Human Rights.

K.V. Mediterranean Tours Limited, which applied to the IPC regarding its immovable properties in Varosha in 2010, claims the company is being discriminated against due to its Greek Cypriot ownership. The Greek Cypriot company also claims the IPC has become ineffective as a domestic remedy to solve property disputes.

There are 6,536 applications at the IPC as of 15 April 2019, of which 964 have been finalized through friendly settlements and 33 through formal hearings. As a result, the IPC has paid 302,145,102 GBP in compensation. The Commission also agreed to return immovable properties to three applicants; agreed on exchange of property for two applicants and in seven applications, the IPC agreed both to return the properties and pay compensation.


TCs supply GCs with electricity following power cuts

Kıbrıs Postası, Kıbrıs, Havadis, Diyalog
CBMs, Economy

OVERVIEW

The Cyprus Turkish Electricity Authority (KIB-TEK) announced on Tuesday that power cuts experienced in North Cyprus were due to a major malfunction at the Vasiliko power station in South Cyprus caused by a lightning strike.

The authority, in a statement to TAK news agency, said that the interconnectivity between the two sides had worked and, in this case, had seriously benefitted South Cyprus.

It said that power supplied from the North allowed the power supply in the South to be restored in a short period of time.

Power outages were experienced in Nicosia, Kyrenia, Alsancak (Karavas), Çamlıbel (Myrtou), Güneşköy (Nikitas) and Geçitkale (Lefkoniko) due to a surge in the interconnected grids caused by the malfunction, the electricity authority said.


‘While the world cries for Notre Dame, look at what we do!’

Kıbrıs Postası
Human Rights

OVERVIEW

Construction of the Girne (Kyrenia) University campus next to the Ayios Vasileios Church in Karakum (Karakoumi) continued on Tuesday, despite all warnings and attempts to halt the construction, Kıbrıs Postası reports. The construction, which belongs to Suat Günsel, is still underway and continues to threaten the church. While the world weeps for Notre Dame, the Turkish Cypriots continue to lose their cultural heritage monuments due to the negligence and ignorance of Turkish Cypriot authorities, the daily says.

The paper reports that the lease agreement for the land on which the construction is taking place expired on March 31. This changes the status of the construction from being one without permit to that of an ‘occupier’ on the land, from the legal point of view.

In a social media post on Tuesday, Kyrenia Municipal Council member and vice-mayor Ziya Egemen Sencer claimed the Town Planning Department gave the necessary permits to the construction. Sencer also criticized the Interior Minister Ayşegül Baybars for not following up with the complaints to stop the ongoing construction activities.


Purchased in billions, sold in millions

Kıbrıs, Havadis
Economy

OVERVIEW

TRNC total imports for 2018 stand at 1,816,400,000 USD while exports to Turkey and other countries came to 100,900,000 USD, according to the Annual Report of the Turkish Cypriot Trade Department announced on Tuesday.  According to the report, 58.8% of imports are from Turkey while 41.2% are from third countries while fuel oil and vehicles top the list of imported goods.

173,757,404 USD worth of fuel oil was imported in 2018 and 117,489,229 USD worth of vehicles. Other significant items imported are power plant parts, furniture, industrial machinery, IT machinery and parts, aluminium, alcoholic beverages, packaging containers, barley, asphalt, lighting, vegetable oil, canned fish, and infant toys and clothing.

A total of 51.7% of exports were made to Turkey and 48.3% to third countries. There is a four per cent decrease in exports in 2018 compared to the previous year, according to the statistics from the same report. Dairy products remained at the top of the list of export items in 2018 with a value of 43,583,403 USD. Dairy products were followed by citrus exports amounting to 18,328,818 USD and rakı (alcohol) maintained its third place in exports with a nine million US dollar share.

In other news, Ercan (Tymbou) airport saw a 13.5% decrease in the number of planes landing and taking off in a comparative look at the air traffic in the first three months of 2019 and 2018. Air traffic controller İzzet Derkan said in a statement on Tuesday that 5,777 planes landed and took off from Ercan (Tymbou) airport in the first three months of 2019 whereas 6,561 did so in the same period the previous year.