Front Page Headlines
Anxiety, outrage and concern
The voice of the crisis in the streets: “We are unable to cope.” Everyone on the street is talking about how they are going to hit rock bottom and go bankrupt,’ due to the devaluation of the Turkish Lira. People are looking for ways out of the situation they are in.
- Elmalı: “The country needs schools, not new presidential complexes” – The Turkish Cypriot Teachers’ Union (KTÖS) and the Secondary School Teachers’ Union (KTOEÖS) staged a protest outside the parliament.
The exchange rates of foreign currencies fixed for three months in lease agreements
The government has adopted several economic measures given the plunge in the value of the Turkish Lira against foreign currencies. Among the measures adopted in the four-point package, it was decided to launch a loan scheme for ₺150m (€10.1m), fixing of the exchange rate of foreign currencies to a set value in lira for lease agreements, reduction of interest rates on credit cards and the restructuring of bank loans.
- UBP first, CTP second and the HP in third place – COMAR, a polling company owned by the Kıbrıs Media group published its first poll results for the January 2022 elections. The results show that the National Unity Party (UBP) will receive 39.2 per cent of the votes; the Republican Turkish Party (CTP) 22.3 per cent and the People’s Party (HP) 13.4 per cent. The poll was done with 2151 people through face to face interviews.
This fire cannot be put out with one drop
Prime Minister Faiz Sucuoğlu came up with a four-point economic package after meeting with the Bankers’ Union, the Central Bank, the Turkish Cypriot Investment Agency (YAGA) as well as with the former economy and finance ministers. The package was announced with a press conference but received little interest.
- Both the number of cases and fear has grown – The Greek Cypriot administration given the increase in the number of coronavirus cases adopted new decisions and measures. The new measures will enter into force on November 29.
UBP asks for ₺50,000 (€3570)
The application process for those who wish to run as a candidate in the upcoming elections which will be held under the shadow of severe economic problems has commenced. The National Unity Party (UBP) asks for a ₺25,000 (€1,785) cash registration fee from each candidate. The candidate, once his/her candidacy is confirmed, is required to deposit another ₺25,000 (€1,785). It is reported that the UBP has already received three applications.
- Drove their taxis to the palace – Taxi drivers in the south staged a protest against Greek Cypriot officials for trying to prevent them from buying petrol from the north.
- The ad-hoc committee dissolved – The political parties represented in the parliament did not reach a consensus on scrapping the system of split voting.
Finally, the government fixed the exchange rate of foreign currencies
The Council of Ministers decided to implement a fixed exchange rate for foreign currencies after the Turkish lira tumbled. The fixed rates, though the reasons on how it was decided are not known, will be in force for three months. The government also adopted other measures and announced them under four points.
Tatar: TCs are as sovereign as GCs on the islandYenidüzen, Kıbrıs, Havadis, Diyalog, Avrupa
Turkish Cypriot leader Ersin Tatar on Wednesday said that Turkish Cypriots were as sovereign as Greek Cypriots on the island of Cyprus.
Reiterating his views in favour of a two-state solution during a speech delivered at the foundation laying ceremony for a museum of ‘national struggle’ in Güzelyurt (Morphou), Tatar said that this was the only feasible solution model for Cyprus.
He repeated that the time of talks for a federal settlement was over as he drew attention to the recent leaks in the Greek Cypriot media of the minutes of meetings held in Crans Montana in 2017.
“Following my election into office, the Turkish Cypriot side’s new vision of a two-state solution has gained so much strength that no one can change it,” Tatar claimed, adding that the solution can only be based on two states which have equal sovereignty, and which collaborate.
He also said that Güzelyurt (Morphou) had in the past always been written off as an area to be given away as part of territorial adjustment in the event of a settlement.
“It is out of the question to give Güzelyurt (Morphou) to the Greek Cypriot side,” Tatar stressed, adding that the town is and will always be located within the borders of the Turkish Cypriot state.
Touching upon the issue of hydrocarbons, Tatar argued that the Turkish Cypriot state was of great strategic importance for Turkey in the Eastern Mediterranean region.
Also speaking at the ceremony, Turkish Ambassador Ali Murat Başçeri said the Turkish Cypriots’ welfare was Turkey’s redline.
He pointed out the Greek Cypriot side by leaking documents to the media, was attempting to create a perception that Turkey had made concessions from its positions in Crans Montana in 2017.
“These claims are not true and such attempts are futile,” Başçeri said, adding that the negotiations table in Crans Montana was toppled by the Greek and the Greek Cypriot sides.
He also argued that what had happened in Crans Montana is no longer important as there will be no talks for a federal settlement.
“It is necessary for the sides to discuss a two-state model and how they can co-exist side-by-side,” Başçeri stressed.
>> TCs as sovereign as GCs on the island of Cyprus.
>> Two-state solution is the only feasible option & time for federal talks is over.
>> TC state is vital for Turkey’s strategic interests in the East Med.
>> Attempts to portray Turkey as having made concessions in Crans Montana futile.
>> Negotiations collapse in Crans Montana caused by the GC side.
>> What happened in Crans Montana is not important as there will be no talks for a federal settlement.
>> Time has come to negotiate a two-state solution.
KTTO says 2022 state budget is unrealistic”Yenidüzen, Kıbrıs, Havadis, Diyalog, Avrupa
Governance & Power Sharing, Economy
The Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Commerce (KTTO) on Wednesday slammed the Turkish Cypriot authorities for coming up with an unrealistic budget for the north for 2022.
In a statement issued, the KTTO said “the 2022 budget which is currently being debated in the parliament is yet another proof that the Turkish Cypriot politicians and public administration are acting in line with the realities of the country.”
KTTO added that even though the devaluation of the Turkish lira in the past weeks and the coronavirus pandemic pose serious threats to the Turkish Cypriot economy, the 2022 budget is mainly designed to channel revenues and resources to payment of salaries of the public sector and debt payments.
“This is nothing but a total waste,” KTTO stressed, adding that the north’s economy, which is dependent on tourism, real estate and higher education revenues, have suffered and continue to suffer due to the pandemic.
“Even though the limited resources available should have been spent to maintain the interest of foreign investors, Turkish Cypriot politicians and senior public servants have chosen to spend the money for their salary payments,” the statement read, arguing that the 2022 budget is not designed to cope with the economic crisis.
“Not only the public finances have lost its ability to manage the crisis, but the budget will make the poorer circles, private sector and their workers suffer more during the economic crisis,” the statement stressed.
Questioning the reasons as to why the politicians have not come up with a realistic budget for the coming year, the KTTO underlined the budget will further deepen uncertainty in the north.
Ad-hoc committee on ‘split voting’ dissolvedYenidüzen, Kıbrıs, Havadis, Diyalog, Avrupa
Governance & Power Sharing
The ad-hoc committee established to discuss whether to scrap the ‘split voting’ system in the existing election law was dissolved after the parties failed to reach a consensus
In a statement issued on Wednesday, the Turkish Cypriot Parliament’s press bureau said that the parties had entered a deadlock after they refused to change their positions on the issue.
“In this regard, following consultations it has become evident that there is no basis for an agreement,” the statement read, announcing the end for the work of the committee.
The National Unity Party (UBP) and the Rebirth Party (YDP) had been in favour of scrapping the option of ‘split voting’ whereas the People’s Party (HP) and the Social Democratic Party (TDP) which receive votes from across the political spectrum expressed their opposition.
The two parties argue that scrapping the option would hinder the public’s basic freedoms in an election.
In the meantime, the same committee approved the date for the early elections to be held on January 23, 2022. The bill is expected to be approved by the parliamentary assembly on Wednesday. The prohibition period on state funds and resources will come into force on Friday, November 26 and will last until the election day.
Two caught w/ counterfeit passports while trying to cross to the south
Yenidüzen, Kıbrıs, Havadis, Diyalog, Avrupa
Two suspects C.E.O and C.I.O were detained by Turkish police at the Lokmacı (Ledra St.) crossing point on November 23 while trying to cross to the southern part of the island with forged passports.
The police on duty arrested the suspects and transferred the matter to the courts.