TCC Press Review 03 Nov 2019

Front Page Headlines

Yenidüzen

No report despite the fact it’s been 363 days

363 days have passed since the flash flood at Ciklos (Kyklos) which claimed the lives of four people. The report has not been published yet. Family members, who claim their children died due to negligence, are outraged over the delay of the report.

  • Atlas airlines ceased its flights, amendments to be made to the Green Line – Republican Turkish Party (CTP) leader Tufan Erhürman pointed to two growing risks in the economy and questioned the government’s reaction.
  • 138 schools out of 158 are from pre-1974 – Only 20 public schools were built since 1975. There are 119 private school buildings in the north.

Kıbrıs Postası

Traffic jam on a road closed for traffic

The half-completed Nicosia north peripheral road is being used by drivers as if the road is open for traffic. Public Works Minister Tolga Atakan said people continue to use the road even though they have taken every possible measure to stop people from doing so.

  • Tatar and Özersay say they are following the developments – The Greek Cypriot side’s decision to implement stricter controls at crossings was the main topic of debate in the parliament.

Kıbrıs

Serious negligence in Ciklos (Kyklos)

The special parliamentary committee set up to investigate the deaths of four people swept away during a flash flood in Ciklos (Kyklos) on December 5 December 2018 has finally completed its report.

  • The debates on the collapsed school construction continue

Havadis

Red alert in tourism

The TRNC tourism sector continues to suffer since the beginning of 2019. According to data obtained from the Tourism Planning Department, the occupancy rate until October 2019 at hotels dropped by 3.2 per cent compared to the same period the previous year.

  • Antonis sent to jail – The judge rejected bail for the Greek Cypriot who was caught with 250 grams of drugs at Metehan (Agios Dometios) crossing point.

Diyalog

Bloody robbery attempt

Süheyla Argüden, whose husband Ali Argüden had been murdered seven years ago, was kidnapped by two masked men. They took the keys to her jewellery shop after torturing her.

  • Sent to jail for two months – A.M, who was arrested while attempting to smuggle in the country 250 grams of drugs, sent to jail.

Afrika

The rapist, if in Turkey, would have walked free

Turkey has become a living hell for children and women. While turning a blind eye to the raping of children, rapists go unpunished. A father, who was first sentenced to 50 years in prison for raping his own daughter, was released four months later following a ruling by an appeals court.

Main News

TC officials welcome MoU between Turkey & Libya

Yenidüzen, Kıbrıs Postası, Kıbrıs, Havadis, Diyalog
Energy, Regional/ International Relations

OVERVIEW

Turkish Cypriot Economy and Energy Minister Hasan Taçoy on Monday welcomed the recent memorandum of understanding (MoU) signed between Turkey and Libya’s UN-recognized Government of National Accord (GNA) on maritime jurisdictions.

Speaking to CNN Türk, Taçoy said that agreement was very important in the sense that it enabled Turkey to effectively and legally put an end to Greece’s claims in the Eastern Mediterranean which were based on its islands.

Taçoy said that the Greek Cypriot side had launched unilateral activities after 2000 to impose its control over the area, signing agreements with Egypt and Israel in the process.

“Turkey which was engaged with the Cyprus negotiations process at the time had approached the issue calmly from a distance,” he said, adding that the Greek Cypriot side had used to opportunity to advance its goals.

Taçoy expressed the view that as the result of steps taken with Turkey, the TRNC had succeeded in making its presence felt and its existence acknowledged.

“We have reached a stage where Libya and perhaps other countries can recognize the TRNC,” he said.

Taçoy added that Turkey and the Turkish Cypriot side will continue activities within their own areas.

The agreement signed between Turkey and Libya is a milestone development to strengthen sovereign rights in the seas,” National Unity Party (UBP) MP Oğuzhan Hasipoğlu said in a written statement issued on Monday.

Hasipoğlu said the struggle for sovereignty was no longer limited to land but had also extended to the seas.

He recalled the continental delineation agreement signed between the TRNC and Turkey in 2011, arguing similar to sovereign rights on land, countries also had rights on territorial waters as well as on the areas in their continental shelf.

Therefore, maritime jurisdiction areas are as equally important as the state’s rights on land, he added.

“As a result of the agreement, Turkey’s maritime jurisdiction is one-quarter bigger than its land area. And when the agreement signed with the TRNC is added, today the Blue Homeland covers an area of 460,000km2, which amounts to more than half of the country itself,” Hasipoğlu said.

He also argued that the agreement is now preventing any possible agreement to be signed between the Greek Cypriot administration and Egypt.

“The said agreement has created a situation which will strengthen Turkey’s and TRNC’s positions in the region reducing the Greek Cypriot side’s manoeuvrability with Greece and Egypt,” Hasipoğlu argued. He said the steps to be taken from this point onwards would be for Turkey to sign an exclusive economic zone (EEZ) agreement with Libya.

Hasipoğlu added a solution of the Cyprus problem could now be reached with Turkey’s and Turkish Cypriots’ determined stance in the Eastern Mediterranean.

Ömer Çelik, spokesman for Turkey’s ruling Justice and Development (AK) party said on Monday the MoU signed with Libya was in line with international law.

“The memorandum between Turkey and Libya on maritime jurisdiction in the eastern Mediterranean complies with international law,” Çelik, said in a news conference following his party’s group meeting in the capital Ankara.

On Wednesday, the Turkish Communications Directorate announced that Turkey and Libya have signed two memoranda of understanding.

“The Security and Military Cooperation” and “Restriction of Marine Jurisdictions” agreements were signed when Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan held a closed-door meeting that lasted 2 hours and 15 minutes with Fayez al-Sarraj, chairman of Presidential Council of Libya, at the Dolmabahçe Palace in Istanbul.

The directorate said the agreement is an effort to strengthen relations and cooperation between the two countries.

KEY ACTOR
Taçoy (UBP)
>>
MoU very important as it effectively & legally ends Greece’s claims in the East Med which is based on its islands.
>> TRNC, with steps taken with Turkey, has succeeded in making its presence felt & existence acknowledged.
>> Turkey & TCs will continue activities within their own areas.

Hasipoğlu (UBP)
>>
The MoU between Turkey & Libya on maritime jurisdictions is a milestone development to strengthen sovereign rights in the seas.
>> The struggle for sovereignty is limited to land but also extended to the seas.
>> Maritime jurisdiction areas are as equally important as the state’s rights on the land.
>> The agreement signed between Turkey & Libya in the East Med is now preventing any possible agreement to be signed between the GC administration and Egypt.
>> The said agreement has created a situation which will strengthen Turkey’s % TRNC’s positions in the region reducing the GC’s manoeuvrability with Greece & Egypt.
>> The steps to be taken from this point onwards would be for Turkey to sign EEZ agreements with Libya.
>> The solution of the Cyprob might come with Turkey’s & TCs’ determined stance in the East Med.

Çelik (Turkey)
>>
MoU complies with int’l law


MPs express concern over Green Line Regulation changes

Yenidüzen, Kıbrıs Postası, Kıbrıs, Havadis, Diyalog
Migration & Citizenship, Economy

OVERVIEW

Certain changes introduced by the Greek Cypriot authorities to the Green Line Regulation implementation code dominated discussion among Turkish Cypriot MPs at Monday’s session of parliament.

The changes to the code, which mainly affect third-country nationals, were announced by Greek Cypriot Interior Minister Constantinos Petrides on Wednesday.

Among others, third-country nationals who have arrived on the island through the north are banned from crossing over to the south. Likewise, third-country nationals on temporary resident visas, like domestic workers, have also been banned from going north.

Turkish Cypriot Foreign Minister Kudret Özersay on Monday expressed the view that the new regulations will create problems.

Raising the issue, Özersay said they were still waiting for an official statement from Greek Cypriot authorities.

He also said that he had contacted both the United Nations (UN) and the European Union (EU).

“We don’t want to display a hostile attitude. We shall see what the changes envisage,” he said, repeating his earlier view that Turkish Cypriot authorities would be ready to collaborate with Greek Cypriot officials if the changes were indeed intended to curb illegal migration.

Also addressing parliament on Monday Prime Minister Ersin Tatar said that amendments to introduced by the Greek Cypriot side were void of good intentions.

He claimed that the move was intended to “axe” the Turkish Cypriot economy.

“We won’t be tricked by such games. We shall raise the issue with the UN for counter-steps. They have direct access to the world but won’t even allow for direct flights to the north,” he said.

Tatar also said that it was also the Greek Cypriot side’s veto which was preventing direct trade with the north.

“We shall continue to do everything possible to take defend our rights,” he added.

In a written statement later in the day, Tatar warned that the Turkish Cypriot side will not hesitate to take counter-steps if the measures are aimed at hurting Turkish Cypriot tourism.

He said that the TRNC was as just as legal a state as Republic of Cyprus (RoC).

Tatar added that the Greek Cypriot’s refusal to see the realities on the island was the biggest obstacle in the way of a settlement.

“There are two languages, two peoples and two sovereign states in Cyprus. As the former Greek Cypriot leader George Vasiliou stated the TRNC has all characteristics of a state. It is as legal a state as the RoC. The refusal of our Greek Cypriot neighbours to acknowledge this reality is the biggest obstacle in the way of reaching a settlement on this island,” he said.

Tatar said that the restrictions will naturally impact the north’s tourism.

“It will also prevent the development of relations between the two sides,” he said, adding that the measures will further erode hopes for a partnership settlement on the island.

“The way of curbing illegal migration is not through taking such restrictive measures but through sincerely cooperating with the TRNC, Tatar added.

The leader of the main opposition Republican Turkish Party (CTP) Tufan Erhürman who also raised the issue in parliament expressed concern that the new restrictions could not only curtail spending of people crossing over from the south but could also affect relations between the two communities negatively.

Deputy Speaker of Parliament Zorlu Töre described the measures as a restriction to the freedom of travel.

In a written statement issued on Monday, Töre said such moves which were reflective of the Greek Cypriot mindset that deems TRNC ports as illegal, were unacceptable.

“We can be all Cypriots but no one should forget that we are not a single nation or people” Töre stressed.

He also pointed out new citizenship criteria DIKO and EDEK had proposed for granting Republic of Cyprus (RoC) citizenship was the result of a fascist and racist mentality.

“It became evident once again it was not possible to establish a joint state with those who consider Cyprus as a Greek island,” Töre argued.

He added this is also the reason why all efforts to date to reach a solution to the Cyprus talks have failed.

Töre urged Turkish Cypriots to protect the state and claimed that the Greek Cypriot Church and EOKA have played an instrumental role in indoctrinating the Greek Cypriot mindset to punish Turkish Cypriots.

KEY ACTORS
Özersay (HP)
>>
New regulations will create problems.
>> Issue has been raised with UN & EU
>> TC side ready to collaborate with GC authorities if measures really intended to curb illegal migration.

Tatar (UBP)
>>
Measures introduced by GC side void of good intentions & aimed at ‘axing’ TC economy.
>> TC side will take counter-measures if needed & will do everything necessary to defend its rights.
>> TRNC is just as legal a state as RoC.
>> GC’s refusal to see the realities on the island is the biggest obstacle in the way of a settlement.
>> Restrictions will naturally impact tourism, will prevent the development of relations between the two sides & will further erode hopes for a partnership settlement on the island.
>> Way of curbing illegal migration is not through introducing restrictive measures but by cooperating sincerely with TC authorities.

Erhürman (CTP)
>>
Measures concerning. Restrictions could curtain spending from south & have a negative effect on relations between two communities.  

Töre (UBP)
>> Measures are a restriction to freedom of travel.
>> Such moves are unacceptable.
>> Not possible to establish a partnership with GC mentality.


Erhürman: CTP to continue efforts for a solution at all costs

Yenidüzen, Havadis, Diyalog
Negotiations Process, Governance & Power Sharing

OVERVIEW

CTP leader Tufan Erhürman on Monday underlined the importance of continuing efforts and dialogue in solving the Cyprus Problem.

He said that the CTP will continue efforts for a solution at all costs and under all circumstances.

“We shall work towards solving any issues on political equality which is a basic parameter and essential for the resumption of talks. We shall also take the necessary steps for a comprehensive settlement without losing any more time,” Erhürman told members of his party during a visit to Alsancak (Karavas) on Monday.

He said should efforts to solve the Cyprus Problem fail the CTP will not sit and wait with its hands tied.

“While continuing to work for a solution we also need to actively inform other world actors about ourselves and our positions,” he said.

Touching upon the issue of Maraş (Varosha), the CTP leader said that any move to be taken on the fenced-off city should be done within the framework of UN Security Council (UNSC) resolutions.

“Turkish Cypriots should be able to trade directly with the outside world, our youth should be able to compete in international sports events, it should not be forgotten that we are one of the interlocutors on registering Hellim (Halloumi) as a Product of Origin (PoD),” Erhürman added.

He reminded that Turkish Cypriots were founding partners of Cyprus.

“We will tirelessly explain to others how wrong it is to postpone the exercising of our rights only to after a solution is reached,” Erhürman stressed. He pointed out that this could not be possible by sitting around idly but through an active foreign policy.

KEY ACTORS
Erhürman (CTP)
>>
Dialogue is important for solving Cyprob.
>> CTP will continue efforts at all costs & under all circumstances.
>> Solving problems on political equality is essential for resuming negotiations.
>> CTP will not sit and wait idly if efforts to solve Cyprob fail.
>> Any move on Maraş (Varosha) should be done within the framework of UNSC resolutions.
>> TCs are founding partners of Cyprus. CTP will tirelessly explain to others how wrong it is to postpone the exercising of TCs rights only to after a solution is reached.


Kızılyürek launches an initiative

Yenidüzen, Kıbrıs Postası
EU Matters

OVERVIEW

“MEP Niyazi Kızılyürek has launched a ‘citizens’ initiative’ in order to discuss the details of the current process, to identify the problems the Turkish Cypriots are experiencing and to find remedies,” Yenidüzen and Kıbrıs Postası reported on Tuesday.

As a first step, Kızılyürek will hold a day-long conference with the civil society organizations.

During the conference, academics, professionals and activists will deliver presentations under the areas of economy, society and politics.

The participants will discuss issues such as economic development, corruption perception, education, human rights, federation, European Union (EU) and relations with Turkey.

Finally, three parallel workshops will be held to produce the conclusive declaration of the conference representing the will of the Turkish Cypriots together with the citizens.

“Niyazi Kızılyürek will bring the conclusions of the conference to EU’s agenda,” the papers conclude.

The conference will be held on Saturday, 14 December 2019.


GC man sent to jail for two months

Havadis, Diyalog
Internal Security

OVERVIEW

A Greek Cypriot man who was arrested while attempting to cross over to the north through the Metehan (Agios Dometios) crossing point with 250 grams of marijuana in his car, was sent to jail pending trial.

The man who admitted to his crime in his testimony appeared before the Nicosia District Court on Monday. 

The police officer in charge of the investigation told the court that the drugs were found hidden below the steering wheel of the suspect’s car. Police asked the judge not to grant bail to the suspect as the suspect resides in the south.