TCC Press Review 10 Feb 2020

Front Page Headlines

Yenidüzen

The general picture concerning inflation, it has doubled

The difference in prices over the past three years on basic commodities reveals the true picture concerning inflation in the country. While there has been a serious rise in prices overall for food, transportation, health, communication and other yearly expenditures, some prices have doubled during that period. 

Kıbrıs Postası

“I believe Özersay and Tatar do not seek votes from the same pool”

People’s Party (HP) General Secretary Jale Refik Rogers said a leader with international experience rather than a local politician should be elected as president. She argued that Özersay and (National Unity Party’s candidate) Ersin Tatar will not seek votes from the same pool of voters. She added Özersay’s statements, which are different from the other candidates, focus on a step-by-step solution approach. She spoke with Levent Kutay from the Kıbrıs Postası regarding the upcoming presidential elections.

  • “I am behind my words” – President Mustafa Akıncı said Crimea-style annexation, which would be horrible, will bring the end of the TRNC. “I stand behind these views which I have expressed before because this is the real feelings and thoughts of Turkish Cypriot society,” Akıncı added.
  • Turkey purchased its third drillship

Kıbrıs

There are nearly as many unregistered workers as the unemployed

According to the 2019 Household labour force research conducted by the Department of Statistics, 8930 workers employed out of 138,438 are unregistered with any state institution such as the Social Security department. The number of unemployed is 9317.

  • Akıncı: “I am behind my words”
  • Record harvest in olive: 15,000 tons

Havadis

Panic over swine flu

Umut Öksüz, head of the Turkish Cypriot Pharmacists’ association, said the H1N1 (Influenza A) type virus was spreading rapidly in the north. He added the majority of the patients are children. Öksüz warned the pharmacies have run out of the medication prescribed for children and the one for adults are being sold three times faster than before.

  • “I am behind my words” – President Mustafa Akıncı said: “I stand behind my views which I have expressed before because these are the real feelings and thoughts of Turkish Cypriot society.”
  • “I condemn the attacks on the president” – Former Turkish Ambassador in north Nicosia criticized those who attack Mustafa Akıncı.

Diyalog

It will harm (relations)

Prominent figures in Turkish Cypriot politics who described Akıncı’s remarks on Hatay are worried that relations with Turkey could be hurt.

  • ‘I stand behind my words’ – President Akıncı stood by his remarks in an interview to The Guardian.
  • Töre: He is hurting the cause
  • Saner: He will pay the price at the ballot
  • An unattainable goal – Former assistant to UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, Jeffery Feltman, spoke about prospects for a bizonal, bicommunal federation based on political equality.

Afrika

Stop claiming that we saved you

Former Turkish ambassador Kaya Türkmen gave a lesson to those who branded Turkish Cypriots as ungrateful. Retired ambassador Kaya Türkmen who had served for a short term in Cyprus before being called back to Ankara issued a call on social media. He said that those attacking Akıncı should abandon their rhetoric that they saved the Turkish Cypriots and that Turkish Cypriots are ungrateful. “Leave Turkish Cypriots alone,” he said.

  • No to annexation with Turkey – Akıncı responds to attacks. “I stated that a Crimea style annexation would be horrible and would be against the interests of both Turkish Cypriots and Turkey,” he said.

Main News

Akıncı: The policy that ‘Cyprus is Turkish’ is a 1950s slogan

Yenidüzen, Kıbrıs Postası, Kıbrıs, Havadis, Diyalog, Afrika
Negotiations Process, Governance & Power Sharing

OVERVIEW

President Mustafa Akıncı said on Sunday that people in the north did not support annexation by Turkey and said the slogan that ‘Cyprus is Turkish’ belonged in the past.

In a written statement hours after his spokesman Barış Burcu issued a statement in his defence following calls for his resignation from Turkey, Akıncı said: “The issue is not complicated. It is clear. Turkish Cypriots do not want to become a minority on the Greek Cypriot side or live in permanent dependency on Turkey.”

Akıncı repeated his earlier view that Crimea style annexation would be ‘horrible’ and that it would be against the benefit of Turkey.

“This is the actual scenario which will bring the end of the TRNC. I stand behind these views which I have expressed before because this is the real feelings and thoughts of Turkish Cypriot society,” he said.

Turkish Cypriot society does not embrace the possibility of annexation, he added, and the principle is for the ‘TRNC’ to be transformed into one of the equal constituent states in a federal Cyprus.

“This effort must be supported. Such a Cyprus with its north and south [constituent states] will become Turkey-friendly. This is to everyone’s benefit,” he added.

Akıncı said the policy that “Cyprus is Turkish and will remain Turkish” was a 1950s slogan.

“It does not reflect the real situation. Different communities are living in Cyprus and the search for a federal structure in which to live in peace goes on,” he said.

Akıncı concluded by stating that Turkish Cypriots were a secular and democratic society which embraced tolerance and a culture of peace.

“Turkish Cypriots want to continue their struggle for a life based on European values. Such a struggle can only be respected not attacked. This is the dignified response I shall give. Of course, the people will give the appropriate response when the time comes,” he added.

Meanwhile, several Turkish Cypriot political actors or parties expressed support to Akıncı and his remarks.

“Akıncı’s interview not only reflects the realities of the community but it has helped reveal the true intentions of those who try to smear the interview,” Burak Maviş, Education Secretary of Turkish Cypriot Teachers’ Union (KTÖS) said on Sunday.

In a written statement issued from the union, Maviş underscored that the attacks on Akıncı were attacks on the Turkish Cypriot community.

“The Turkish Cypriot community will neither be held hostage by Ankara who is attempting to colonize the northern part of the island nor will they be brought under the yoke of the Greek Cypriot leadership,” Maviş stressed.

He added that the Turkish Cypriots have the capability and the potential to self-govern.

Criticizing the government in Ankara, Maviş noted that those who use every opportunity to insult the Turkish Cypriot community, those who launch lynch campaigns against the freedom of expression and those who attempt to give orders to elected leaders of the Turkish Cypriot community, are actually and knowingly harming the inter-communal relations on the island.

Maviş said KTÖS welcomed Akıncı’s statement as he revealed the realities in the north.

“We, who are struggling against Ankara’s colonization efforts in the north, are disturbed by the current state of affairs but we cannot comprehend the collaborators’ attitude towards unveiling Ankara’s colonization efforts in the north,” Maviş concluded.

United Cyprus Party (BKP) leader İzzet İzcan condemned the ongoing smear campaign against President Mustafa Akıncı on Sunday.

In a written statement issued, İzcan said that partition and annexation was the opposite of a solution and peace.

“As Mr Akıncı rightfully identified the threats to be faced by the Turkish Cypriot community; if there is not a federal solution on the island, it will be the end of the Turkish Cypriots’ existence and its identity on the island,” İzcan stressed.

İzcan also criticised those who attacked Akıncı. “The Justice and Development Party (AKP) – Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) dictatorship and their collaborators in the northern part of the island are the ones to be criticized and not Mr Akıncı who courageously stated the realities,” İzcan said.

İzcan argued that the goal of the attacks is to discredit Akıncı in the upcoming elections. “Those who want partition on the island are trying to remove Akıncı from the equation. The presidential election will be between those who want to obstruct a solution on the island together with the AKP-MHP rule in Ankara and those who want to see a solution on the island,” İzcan concluded.

“Were you really expecting the president to say he wants to be Turkey’s 82nd province?” former Turkish Ambassador to north Nicosia Kaya Türkmen said on Sunday.

In a social media post, Türkmen asked those who criticized Akıncı, “to leave the Turkish Cypriots alone and abandon the rhetoric that ‘we saved you, but you are being ungrateful’.”

“Mr President is right and annexation of the TRNC would indeed be horrible,” Türkmen stressed, condemning those who attacked him.

Urging those who frivolously attack the president to look at Turkey, Türkmen asked them to question the reasons who so many people have moved to Cyprus from Turkey.

Left Movement (Sol Hareket) also condemned the attacks and insults directed at President Mustafa Akıncı.

In a written statement issued on Sunday, Abdullah Korkmazhan, the president of the Left Movement claimed the Turkish Cypriot community is under an organized and systematic intervention from Ankara regarding the upcoming presidential elections.

“The real aim is to suppress the Turkish Cypriots’ political will and to dismiss the federal solution process,” Korkmazhan stressed.

“The Turkish Cypriot community will not submit to pressure and will not be subjugated. The upcoming presidential elections will be a choice between Turkish Cypriots’ political will or obedience and freedom and federal solution or annexation,” Korkmazhan concluded.

KEY ACTORS
Akıncı
>> Slogan that ‘Cyprus is Turkish’ belongs to the past.
>> TCs do not want to become a minority on the Greek Cypriot side nor to live in dependence on Turkey.
>> Annexation would bring the actual end of TRNC.
>> TCs do not embrace the possibility of annexation. The principle is for TRNC to be transformed into one of the equal constituent states in a federal Cyprus.
>> Different communities are living in Cyprus.
>> TCs are a secular & democratic society which embraces tolerance & culture of peace.


Turkey procures its third drillship

Kıbrıs Postası
Energy, Regional/International Relations

OVERVIEW

Turkey’s state-run Turkish Petroleum Corporation (TPAO) has added another drilling vessel to its fleet for $37.5 million, according to a prominent Turkish maritime publication.

Sertao, moored at Port Talbot in Britain for two years, was acquired by TPAO in an auction, Istanbul-based Denizcilik Dergisi (Maritime Magazine) reported on Sunday.

Built in South Korea by Samsung in 2012, the Marshall Islands-flagged drilling ship was used by Brazil’s state-run company Petrobras until 2015.

Although the market price Sertao was estimated at $120 million, Port Tablot agreed to sell it for such a low price to amortize the soaring berth costs and the depreciation of its value, Denizcilik said.

The 228-meter-long drilling ship’s carrying capacity is nearly 62,000 tons and its current draught is reported to be 12 meters. It has a rated water depth of 3,000 meters and a drilling depth capacity of up to 11,400 meters.

The maximum drilling depth capability of Turkey’s first two drilling vessels in operation, Fatih and Yavuz, is around 12,000 meters.