Front Page Headlines
‘UK variant 66 per cent”
The Director of Near East University’s Experimental Health Sciences Research Institute (DESAM) Prof. Dr Tamer Şanlıdağ said that according to lab analysis carried out on Covid-19 variants in the north, the prevalence of the UK mutation of the virus within the community in January was 45 per cent. He said this figure had gone up to 66 per cent in March.
- “Outrage against rotten mentality, a late farewell,” – Hüseyin Rüstem Akansoy laid to rest his mother Emine Rüstem Akansoy (36) and his four siblings aged between eight and 15 at the Muratağa (Maratha)-Sandallar (Santalaris) Martyrs’ cemetery with a plain civilian ceremony. President Ersin Tatar expressed his disapproval of the family’s request not to have a state ceremony. He said the state, not the families of the missing, should decide on what kind of a ceremony will be held in such situations.
More than a hundred patients waiting for kidney transplants
The first kidney transplantation at the Dr Burhan Nalbantoğlu Hospital from a live donor was carried out in 2015 and from a corpse donor in 2016. 48 kidney transplant operations were carried out since 2015 and there are dozens of patients waiting anxiously for their turn.
- Steps towards recognition of the TRNC must be taken – Former British Foreign Secretary Jack Straw said the solution efforts on the island must be geared towards a two-state model.
- The goal is to put the new hospital in service by 2023 – Prime Minister Ersan Saner announced the construction for the new 500-bed State Hospital in Nicosia will start in October.
- Nearly 600kgs of illegally smuggled meat, 50kgs of milk power – Police found significant amounts of illegally smuggled meat and milk powder in a car in Demirhan (Trachoni). Police, which believes the meat was smuggled from south Cyprus, arrested one person and is searching for another.
Turkey: 32 (not free) North Cyprus: 78 (free)
Freedom House, which is regarded as an authority on freedom levels enjoyed in countries, has come up with interesting results in its survey carried out in 210 countries globally and in the region. According to the 2020 Freedom House report, in which North Cyprus is separately evaluated from the “Republic of Cyprus,” the north received 78 points. North Cyprus had 81 points in the 2019 report. Despite the three-point decrease, North Cyprus was listed in the free countries category. The north received 28 points out of 40 in terms of political rights and 50 out of 60 in civil liberties. The report also referred to Turkey’s “extreme political and economic influence” on North Cyprus. South Cyprus on the other hand received 94 out of 100 in general freedoms.
- People’s righteous uprising – A protest was staged against plans for a new stone quarry to be opened in the Taşkent (Vouno) – Güngör (Koutoventis) area.
- Reacting to Kanlı’s comments in favour of annexation with Turkey – Harsh reactions to the latest remarks made by Özer Kanlı, who is a National Unity Party (UBP) Executive Committee member and is the President of the Board of Directors at the Turkish Cypriot public broadcaster Bayrak. People’s Party (HP) leader Kudret Özersay said “Being annexed by Turkey is not even an option for the Turkish Cypriots. This is not a solution nor would we accept it.” Social Democratic Party (TDP) leader Cemal Özyiğit said the party will raise the issue in parliament and added: “We will question the Prime Minister on the matter.”
- Disregarded public health – The narcotics and anti-smuggling police unit found nearly 500kgs of illegally smuggled meat from the south in a car in Demirhan (Trachoni). M.S was arrested.
These poor people
People working in the tourism sector who have been without work or pay for over a year are in despair. Many families have broken up because of the economic problems they face. Sertaç Serdar who works in the tourism sector said, “My wife and I are separated. My nine-year-old son doesn’t want to stay with me anymore because I don’t work.
- All have been seized – Hundreds of kgs of meat and milk powder smuggled into the country under unhygienic conditions were seized. M.S arrested.
Annexation? F… off!
Annexation is being debated both in Turkey and in the north…Tayyip Erdoğan will supposedly annex the northern part of Cyprus to win an election. This is our response!
- 326 positive cases of coronavirus and two deaths in the south, 35 cases in the north…
Tatar: “Single sovereignty would reinforce GC side’s dominance”Yenidüzen, Kıbrıs, Havadis, Diyalog, Avrupa
Turkish Cypriot leader Ersin Tatar in an attempt to defend his position in favour of a two-state solution on Sunday put forward the argument that the single sovereignty (an aspect of the federal solution) would open the way for Greek Cypriot side to exert its dominance over the Turkish Cypriots.
Tatar, addressing a group of civil society organisations via a video conference on Sunday, said he would be tabling the two-state model during the five-plus-one meeting, arguing that the Turkish Cypriots, as equal founding partners of the 1960 Republic of Cyprus had sovereign rights.
“The right of self-determination emanates from the Turkish Cypriots’ sovereignty,” he said, adding that the concept of single sovereignty envisaged under the federal model would only open the way for the Greek Cypriots to extend their authority to the north.
“Moreover, the issue of sovereignty cannot be linked or defined by population,” Tatar said, stressing equal sovereignty and Turkey’s guarantees were assurances for the Turkish Cypriots’ presence on the island.
Touching on the Maraş (Varosha) issue, Tatar said the reopening of the fenced-off town put an end to the Greek Cypriot side’s expectations of having the town returned in the event of a federal settlement.
Meanwhile, the leader of the Republican Turkish Party (CTP) Tufan Erhürman, was quick to respond to Tatar, harshly criticizing him over his comments on single sovereignty.
“Single sovereignty in a federation is shared based on political equality and contrary to his argument ensures that neither of the two constituent states exerts authority over the other,” Erhürman said. He said Tatar should instead focus his energy and attention on “securing political equality instead of dwelling on unattainable affairs.”
The CTP leader also reminded Tatar that the single sovereignty concept had been accepted by all the Turkish Cypriot leaders that have negotiated federation to date and with Ankara’s support.
>> Single sovereignty attained through a federal solution will allow GCs to exert dominance over TCs.
>> Issue of sovereignty cannot be linked or defined by population.
>> Move on Maraş (Varosha) has removed GC expectations of having the town returned in the event of a federal settlement.
>> Single sovereignty, contrary to Tatar’s argument, ensures neither constituent state exerts authority over the other.
>> Tatar should focus energy on securing political equality.
>> Single sovereignty accepted by all TC leaders negotiating a federation & Ankara to date.
Tatar’s insistence on state funerals for missing persons sparks reactionsYenidüzen, Kıbrıs, Havadis, Diyalog, Avrupa
Turkish Cypriot leader Ersin Tatar’s disapproval of decisions by some families of missing persons not to hold “state ceremonies” sparked fierce reactions from his critics and members of the opposition on Sunday.
The remains of persons in the north, perceived as martyrs, are generally laid to rest with military ceremonies although there have been many instances where family members have requested that no presence of state or government officials.
Tatar, in a statement issued on Sunday from his office, argued that state practices must be followed on the burials of Turkish Cypriot martyrs regardless of the preferences made by the relatives of the missing persons whose remains have been identified.
The debate ignited after a civilian funeral was held on Saturday for Emine Rüstem Akansoy and her four children, who were killed in 1974 in Muratağa (Maratha). The Committee of Missing Persons (CMP) carried out efforts for the identification process for the members of the Akansoy family.
The family had requested a simple funeral without the attendance of government or state representatives. Tatar expressed his disapproval in the statement he issued on Sunday sparking reactions.
Expressing his reaction on social media, CTP leader Tufan Erhürman called on Tatar to respect the wishes of the families. “I urge you to show some respect to the families of the martyrs, to their pain, emotions and their will,” he said.
CTP MP Asım Akansoy, a close relative of Emine Rüstem Akansoy also lashed out at Tatar. “Aren’t you ashamed of exploiting peoples’ pain and tears for politics?” Akansoy asked in a social media post on Sunday. Addressing Tatar he said: “You and those who think like you in the south have caused this pain and now trying to use these incidents for political gains.”
Tatar’s remarks also received reactions from the Social Democratic Party (TDP) as well as other groups who oppose the Turkish Cypriot leader’s views.
Both sides in Cyprus rank under the “free” category in the Freedom House reportHavadis
Cyprus – both north and south – have been ranked under the “free” category by the US-based freedoms advocacy non-governmental organisation (NGO), Freedom House.
According to the 2020 Freedom House report, North Cyprus, which is separately evaluated from the Republic of Cyprus (RoC), received 78 out of 100 points in the Global Freedom Score. The north had received 81 points in the 2019 report.
Despite the three-point decrease, the report noted the north has a democratic, multiparty political system, and civil liberties are generally upheld whilst specifically mentioning Turkey’s influence as a major concern.
The report highlights “undue political and economic influence from Turkey, corruption, discrimination against minority communities, and human trafficking” remain a major concern for the north. In other areas, the north received 28 points out of 40 in political rights and 50 out of 60 in civil liberties.
South Cyprus on the other hand received 94 points out of 100 in the Global Freedom Score Index. Whilst Freedom House underlined that political rights and civil liberties are respected in the RoC, societal discrimination against minority groups and weaknesses in the asylum system remains a major concern. The RoC received 38 points out of 40 for political rights and 56 out of 60 for civil liberties.
On the other hand, Turkey, which is listed under the “Not Free” category by the NGO, scored 32 out of 100 in the Global Freedom Index,16 points out of 40 for political freedoms and 16 out of 60 for civil liberties.
Freedom House is a U.S.-based, U.S. government-funded non-profit non-governmental organization that conducts research and advocacy on democracy, political freedom, and human rights.
Caught smuggling meat
Yenidüzen, Kıbrıs, Havadis, Diyalog, Avrupa
Police on Saturday night arrested a Turkish Cypriot man after more than 500kgs of smuggled meat was found in the boot of his car.
The man, M:S was arrested in Demirhan (Trachoni) in an operation carried out by police. Police found large quantities of meat and 50kgs of milk powder in the back of his car in unhygienic conditions.
The suspect was ordered to be remanded in police custody for three days until an investigation into the incident is completed.