TCC Press Review 26 Feb 2020

Front Page Headlines

Yenidüzen

“Let’s open the international airport along with Maraş (Varosha)”

Presidential candidate Tufan Erhürman brought to the agenda the idea of opening the Nicosia International Airport closed since 1974 together with Maraş (Varosha). He said that once the airport was opened, the problems of direct trade and direct flights would be solved. “More importantly we will have done something bicommunal,” he added.

  • This happened as well! Tatar denied his remarks – Prime Minister and National Unity Party (UBP) leader, presidential candidate Ersin Tatar went down in history by refuting his own remarks.

Kıbrıs Postası

No business at KIBTEK due to personal excuses

Even though there are vital decisions the Board of Directors at KIBTEK (TC Electricity authority) need to take, the board has been unable to convene for the past three weeks due to personal excuses. The law states that a minimum of five members need to be present for decisions to be taken but that it has not been possible to reach that number as members have been absent with personal excuses.

  • Tatar: “My words on territorial concessions have been misconstrued.”
  • Erhürman: “We have to discuss the opening of the Nicosia airport alongside with Maraş (Varosha).”

Kıbrıs

One bankruptcy after the other

The private establishments, which are the main building blocks of the TRNC economy and which are currently suffering from the economic crisis, are struggling to stay afloat. The numbers of those who give up are as high as the number of new businesses launched.

Havadis

“My excitement for the country is not over”

Former speaker of the parliament and former Prime Minister Sibel Siber said she will announce her decision on her candidacy in March. Siber also answered the criticisms on the president’s discretionary fund and the Maraş (Varosha) meeting.

Diyalog

That’s all from us

Export revenues which were ₺105m in 2017 dropped to ₺100m in 2018 and ₺77m in 2019. The figures clearly indicate that the TRNC economy is not doing well. We see that citrus produce which was the number one exported product after 1974 fell to second place replaced by hellim (halloumi).

  • He should be invited – The Prince of Wales who will be visiting Cyprus is not scheduled to cross over to the north.
  • Guterres determined – (Greek Cypriot) Foreign Minister Nicos Christodulides who met with the UN Secretary-General (UNSG) Antonio Guterres said that a five-party conference will be convened after the TRNC elections.

Afrika

UBP confirmed it, Tatar denied it

Ersin Tatar denied he said that he was going to give a six per cent territorial concession to Greek Cypriots. Ersin Tatar claimed his statement to the Sunday Express was misconstrued and said: The remarks that the Turkish Cypriot side was ready to reduce its territory from 36 per cent to 30 per cent if an agreement was reached are not mine. They are the result of a misunderstanding.

Main News

Nicosia airport should be opened together with Maraş (Varosha)

Yenidüzen, Kıbrıs Postası, Kıbrıs, Havadis, Diyalog, Afrika
Property, Territory, Economy

OVERVIEW

The leader of the Republican Turkish Party (CTP) and presidential candidate Tufan Erhürman said on Tuesday that the idea of opening the Nicosia International Airport together with the fenced-off city of Maraş (Varosha) must be raised.

Speaking on Genç TV, Erhürman said that such a move would solve the problem of direct trade and flights.

“More importantly, it would be something that we will do together as two communities,” the CTP leader added.

Erhürman, recalling that the idea to open the Nicosia International Airport which has been closed since 1974 was originally a United Nations (UN) proposal, said they would be tabling a UN proposal by raising the issue.

He also criticized the government’s approach on the fenced-off town which he claimed ignored UN Security Council (UNSC) resolutions.

Erhürman argued that the issue of Maraş (Varosha) could not be treated solely treated as property dispute and reminded that the UNSC calls for the control of the town to be handed over to UN administration. 

The CTP leader argued that the opening of Maraş (Varosha) could be negotiated with the UN if efforts to reach a solution failed despite the political will of the Turkish Cypriot side.

He also said he did not believe the government was carrying out inventory study as the information they were seeking was already available.

Responding to a question on the proposal submitted by the Greek Cypriot leader Nicos Anastasiades on Maraş (Varosha), Erhürman said the committee should also include the Nicosia International Airport and the hydrocarbons issue.

“If it is not possible to reach the comprehensive settlement any time soon, instead of sitting and waiting, we must discuss these issues that will bring us closer to the solution under the auspices of the UN,” Erhürman stressed.

“Should all these efforts fail, I would open Maraş (Varosha) through the Immovable Property Commission (IPC). I am not disregarding the UN or leaving the Greek Cypriot community out of the process. I am only making my proposal in line with international law,” Erhürman said.

Asked to comment on the developments on the hydrocarbons, Erhürman complained that the voice of the Turkish Cypriot side was being ignored.

Erhürman, in response to a question on relations with Turkey, said the Turkish Cypriot side and Turkey must act together rather than Ankara dictating its policies or terms on the north.

“We have to be in dialogue with Turkey rather than picking fights with Ankara,” he argued, stating that the same approach should apply to relations with the south.

“We want a five-party conference to convene immediately after the elections and Turkey will be at that table. That meeting will be about the future of the island, therefore, relations with Turkey must be re-established on the correct basis and that basis is a structure whereby the Turkish Cypriots can stand on their own feet,” Erhürman added.

“We are working to reach a lasting peace on the island. Due to the conditions the Turkish Cypriots are in, we do not have the luxury to be on bad terms with anyone. We want the Turkish Cypriot identity and culture to be preserved, protected and passed onto the future. It is, therefore, our expectation from the leader we elect to be diplomatically active in the international arena as well,” Erhürman concluded.

KEY ACTORS
Erhürman (CTP)
>> The opening of the Nicosia International Airport must be raised together with the Maraş (Varosha) issue.
>> Such a move would solve the problem of direct trade & direct flights as well as bring two communities closer.
>> This proposal is originally a UN proposal & bringing it to the table would be tabling a UN proposal.
>> The government’s approach on the fenced-off town ignores UNSC resolutions.
>> Maraş (Varosha) cannot be treated solely as a property issue.
>> Anastasiades’ joint committee proposal should be expanded to include the Nicosia International Airport & hydrocarbons issue.
>> Sides must discuss these issues that will bring the island closer to the solution under the auspices of the UN.
>> If these efforts fail, Maraş (Varosha) should be opened through the IPC.
>> TC side and Turkey must act together rather than Ankara dictating terms on the north.
>> Relations with Turkey must be re-established on the correct basis.


Tatar says his words were misconstrued

Yenidüzen, Kıbrıs Postası, Kıbrıs, Havadis, Diyalog, Afrika
Property, Territory

OVERVIEW

Leader of the National Unity Party (UBP), Prime Minister and presidential candidate Ersin Tatar on Tuesday said that views published in the Sunday Express that he was ready to make a six per cent territorial concession in the event an agreement was reached in Cyprus were not his.

In a written statement, Tatar said, “my words to the Sunday Express were misconstrued. No one can distort my words to serve their own purposes.”

He also brushed off any claims that he was prepared to make such territorial concessions.

Tatar said that what he had tried to tell the reporter was that Mustafa Akıncı had offered the Greek Cypriot side in Geneva a territorial concession that exceeded six per cent and that the Greek Cypriot side had even rejected this proposal.

“In reality, our position is very clear. There can be territorial adjustments only if there is going to be an agreement based on the sovereign equality of the two states in Cyprus,” Tatar stressed.

 He added that any such adjustment could only be made in a way which would ensure that Turkish Cypriots were not forced to move or relocate again.

Tatar also said that he had made it abundantly clear in his interview that the Cyprus negotiations process has collapsed as a result of the Greek Cypriot side’s attitude.

“It is time to bring alternative models such as a two-state solution to the table,” Tatar added.

He stressed the isolations or embargoes imposed on the Turkish Cypriots needed to end with the assistance of the United Kingdom (UK), which is one of the three guarantor states in Cyprus.

Highlighting that the Turkish Cypriots are determined to protect their rights in the eastern Mediterranean with Turkey’s assistance, Tatar urged the Greek Cypriot side to come forth to co-manage the natural resources with the Turkish Cypriots.