GCC Press Review 16 Nov 2020

Front Page Headlines


A wet picnic and show on the ruins

Erdogan-Tatar aligned to a two-state solution and opening of Famagusta. The rain and the disdain of the Turkish Cypriots spoiled the show set up between “decorated” ruins of the fenced-off city. (Erdogan) invited the owners of Varosha to return or to appeal to the Immovable Property Commission, even though according to Erdogan the “known” owners are Evkaf. The Presidency condemns Erdogan-Tatar’s acts and warns that such behaviours torpedo UNSG’s efforts.

  • 127 new cases: Tests weren’t enough


Grey Wolf at Varosha

Tayip Erdogan’s visit marks implementation of Turkish plans. Negotiations only for two states.

  • Weather and darkness spoiled the “picnic”: A set up of shame
  • Tracking team never showed up
  • They arrested, photographed, murdered seniors
  • Illegal migrants come unhindered


Erdogan’s “new era” a provocation

Simos Ioannou: UNSG should stop being neutral. AKEL: Acts that are provocative to all Cypriots. Government will denounce new challenge internationally.

  • The other side, the Turkish Cypriots that struggle
  • Government made a mess with tests
  • Another death and 127 new cases of coronavirus recorded yesterday
  • Domestic workers: Mistreatment and exploitation


He came, provoked with Famagusta picnic, put stamp on partition and left

Turkish President heralded a rupture, insisted on two-state solution and sent the message that settling of fenced-off city will continue. The property issue will be solved through the “immovable property commission” Erdogan-Tatar stated from Varosha.

  • COVID-19: One death yesterday and 127 new cases
  • Oz Karahan (interview): Settlers are a majority in the occupied areas and a tool of Ankara

Main News

Erdogan-Tatar visit Varosha, speak of recognition by Azerbaijan

Alithia, Haravgi, Phileleftheros, Politis
Territory, Property, Negotiations Process, Regional/ International Relations, Energy, External Security, EU Matters


All dailies report on Turkish President Tayip Erdogan’s visit to Varosha on Sunday, as well as statements made from the fenced-off city. The event went ahead despite the rain and the bad weather.

Politis also reports that after the rain put a dampener on the planned picnic, Erdogan said that he is sending greetings to “our brothers in Azerbaijan” and told Tatar that he should visit Azerbaijan too, adding that soon the situation could be completely different, implying that the country could recognise the north.

Phileleftheros reports that Erdogan called on G/C owners of properties to claim them through the Immovable Property Commission (IPC). He said that he is saddened to see this beautiful area kept away from the people and that there should be steps taken. He also said that the international community never took the “TRNC” seriously as an interlocutor and kept the T/Cs isolated.

Regarding natural gas, Erdogan said that there can be no regional balance that can bring peace and security without including Turkey and the T/C in a fair way.

T/C leader Ersin Tatar said that he is ready to come to the table with new solution models, referring to the need for the recognition of “sovereign equality”. Tatar said that the solution of two states on the basis of sovereign political equality should be brought to the table.

Tatar repeated that the G/C side had rejected calls to open Varosha in return for opening direct flights to the north.

The Republic of Cyprus said in a statement issued by the Presidency that Turkey is undermining the prospects of a return to negotiations. The Presidency once more condemned the unilateral declaration of independence by the north, and accused Turkey and the T/C “government” of creating new faits accomplis on the ground which contravene international law.

House of Representatives speaker Adamos Adamou said in a statement that Sunday’s event provokes the entirety of the Cypriot people. European Commissioner for Health Stella Kyriakidou wrote on Twitter that Famagusta does not belong to Turkey but to its legal inhabitants.

DISY said in a statement that they will not allow this action to put the nail in the coffin of partition. AKEL said that Erdogan’s and Tatar’s actions contravene international law and undermine any effort to find a solution. DIKO said that it is collecting signatures to condemn Turkey. EDEK said that economic and financial measures need to be taken against the north. Citizens’ Alliance said that the lesson of all these years is that Turkey implements its strategic aims step by step.

Solidarity noted that if the G/C side had decoupled itself from the federal model when the “TRNC” was pronounced, then Sunday wouldn’t be a black anniversary. The Greens said that all should unite against Turkish provocations. ELAM said that the Cyprus Problem is a problem of invasion and occupation. DIPA said that Erdogan’s visit is a provocation not only against Cyprus but against the international community.

The dailies also report on a protest in the occupied areas, where hundreds of T/Cs marched against Erdogan’s visit and in support of the will of the community. The protest was held in north Nicosia and ended up at the T/C parliament and the Turkish embassy.

Phileleftheros also reported that the Famagusta Municipal Council held a symbolic march towards the Deryneia checkpoint. There were also symbolic events from the Greens and students.

T/C activist: Settlers are now the majority in the north

Migration & Citizenship, Human Rights, CBMs


Alithia publishes an interview with T/C activist and president of bicommunal organisation Union of Cypriots, Oz Karahan. The newspaper notes that Karahan was a candidate for the European Parliament with Sener Levent’s Jasmin Movement.

Karahan said that there is evidence indicating that from all those who voted in the recent elections in the north, only 35% were Cypriots and the rest were settlers. He noted that Turkey does not publicise exact numbers in order to hide the war crime under way, but that evidence related to the use of mobile phones or market consumption show the population to approach one and a half million.

He also quoted statements made by Serdar Denktas in 2019 that the population in the north is about 800,000, while former president of the T/C Chamber of Commerce Fikri Toros has said that the population is at least a million.

Karahan also said that it is wrong that the Cypriot government recognises the elections in the north given that it is not a free and fair election.

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