Front Page Headlines
Only 22 of the 116 deceased were vaccinated
The Covid-19 reality in the north of Cyprus concerning vaccines. 84 of those who lost their lives to Covid-19 were either not vaccinated or had not completed their vaccine regimen. There was no information on ten of the patients who passed away. The highest number of deaths concerned people aged between 70 and 80. Seven people in their 40s, 18 people in their 50s, 15 people in their 60s, 26 people in their 70s, 31 in their 80s, nine in their 90s and three were hundred or higher.
- Same currency different inflation rate – N.Cyprus: 26.86 per cent. Turkey: 19.82 per cent. North Cyprus is seven per cent more expensive than Turkey.
Increase in the tax burden for employees
The government launched efforts to amend the law on income tax claiming that the ‘income brackets’ listed are unfair. Economists highlighted that if the proposed amendments were to be implemented, the public, who are already struggling economically due to the pandemic and the devaluation of the Turkish lira, will become even poorer.
- Omicron variant detected in South Cyprus.
90 photos in a single day
73-year-old Mehmet Besimoğlu who took pictures of military camps in the north and sold them to Greek Cypriots was sentenced to ten years in prison. Besimoğlu arrested by police in 2018 was not present in court when the sentence was handed down because he contracted Covid-19. He was sentenced to ten years in prison for committing crimes of espionage and ‘endangering the security of the country’.
- It was Jesus’ command – The defence given by the Greek Cypriot who unflurried a Greek flag on a monument in Famagusta shocked everyone.
- Six parties to pass the election threshold – Gezici’s poll revealed that high prices and price hikes were the TRNC’s biggest problem.
We pay for the soldiers too
Turkey, which has been only transferring funds to the TRNC’s defence budget for the past four years, has not sent any money in the past three months… The government which is in shock due to a shortage of funds will take out a loan of $10m (€7.6m) from two private banks for KIB-TEK (Turkish Cypriot Electricity Authority). The government will take $3m (€2.3m) from Near East Bank with an annual interest rate of 3.95 per cent and $7m (€5.3m) from İktisat Bank with an annual interest rate of 5.50 per cent.
- Either freedom or death – G.S., the Greek Cypriot who wanted to hand a Greek flag at a roundabout in Famagusta, yelled ‘Either freedom or death’ as he was taken out of the courtroom after a judge ordered him to be remanded for three more days.
- YKP also boycotting the elections – New Cyprus Party (YKP) announced they have no reasons to take part in the January 23 elections.
- 10-year prison sentence – M.B., who was accused of espionage, was sentenced to 10 years in prison for taking photographs of the Famagusta port.
- Omicron has arrived – Three people in Limassol had tested positive for the Omicron variant of the coronavirus.
Tatar: “Sovereignty must be accepted before official negotiations”Yenidüzen, Kıbrıs, Diyalog, Avrupa
Turkish Cypriot leader Ersin Tatar on Friday reiterated his position in favour of a two-state solution on the island, arguing that it will be in the best interest of the Greek Cypriot and Turkish Cypriot peoples.
In a statement issued from his office following his first meeting with Colin Stewart, who this week assumed his duties as the UNSG’s Special Representative (SRSG) and head of the UN peacekeeping force on the island (UNFICYP), Tatar said the two-state structure with equal sovereignty in which the two peoples will live side-by-side is important for the Turkish Cypriot side.
Tatar added that during the meeting, he underlined that the island of Cyprus must not be perceived as a Greek island and that Turkish Cypriots were as sovereign as Greek Cypriots in Cyprus.
He said he had told the new SRSG that Turkish Cypriots’ rights to sovereignty emanated from the 1960 partnership republic but that they had been forced to create their state with Turkey’s support after being forced out of the partnership state.
“The Turkish Cypriot side’s sovereignty must be accepted before the sides can commence official negotiations,” Tatar stressed, adding that the Turkish Cypriots can’t accept a solution that will impose a federal settlement or a return to a unitary state.
Tatar said he also found the opportunity to inform Stewart about what he described as the unjust embargoes imposed on Turkish Cypriots. “The Cyprus solution must be fair, practical, equitable, implementable and realistic, Tatar said.
He also noted that the work of the technical committees was also discussed during the meeting, adding that the Turkish Cypriot side will continue to support the process with constructive projects.
Speaking after the meeting with Tatar, Stewart said he looked forward to a close relationship. “As I have told Mr Tatar, I want to be helpful; I want to be constructive and do all I can,” Stewart said, adding that it was a useful briefing on the Turkish Cypriot side’s positions, which was fundamental for him to start understanding where the sides stood.
Stewart expressed satisfaction over Tatar’s acceptance of an invitation to attend Tuesday’s reception, to which Greek Cypriot leader Nicos Anastasiades had also responded positively.
“This will be a very informal social event without an agenda, but it will allow the leaders to talk to each other and myself to know them better,” Stewart said.
>> A two-state solution will be in the best interest of both communities.
>> TC side’s sovereignty must be accepted before the sides can commence official negotiations.
>> Not possible for TCs to accept an imposed settlement, federal or unitary.
>> Looking forward to a close relationship.
>> Briefing useful in understanding the two side’s positions.
Ertuğruloğlu condemned GC side’s unilateral hydrocarbon activitiesYenidüzen, Kıbrıs, Diyalog, Avrupa
Turkish Cypriot Foreign Minister Tahsin Ertuğruloğlu on Friday condemned the Greek Cypriot side’s unilateral hydrocarbon activities.
In a written statement made following the news of the signing of an exploration and production sharing contract with the ExxonMobil – Qatar Petroleum consortium, in ‘Block 5,’ Ertuğruloğlu said the Greek Cypriot side was working on escalating tension in the Eastern Mediterranean region.
“This unilateral step reaffirms the Greek Cypriot administration’s goal to usurp the rights of the Turkish Cypriot people and Turkey,” Ertuğruloğlu said, warning that the Turkish Cypriot side will not remain a bystander to such deliberate actions aimed at escalating tension in the region.
Ertuğruloğlu also recalled that the Turkish Cypriot side and Turkey had put forth constructive proposals to resolve the hydrocarbons disputes in the Eastern Mediterranean region however the Greek Cypriot administration has so far ignored them all.
“Given the Greek Cypriot side’s persistence to carry out such activities, we in collaboration with Turkey will resolutely continue to protect and preserve our rights and interests in the region,” Ertuğruloğlu concluded.
>> Greek-GC side’s actions are usurping the rights of TCs & Turkey.
>> TC side will continue to protect & preserve its rights in the region.
BKP & AKEL reiterate their commitment to BBFYenidüzen, Kıbrıs, Diyalog, Avrupa
United Cyprus Party (BKP) leader İzzet İzcan and a delegation from the party paid a visit to AKEL on Friday. The two political parties discussed the current situation in the Cyprus problem and the future perspectives.
Both parties reiterated that the common ground between the Turkish Cypriots and the Greek Cypriots is standpoint on the comprehensive settlement on the island. “The Cypriots want a bicommunal, bizonal federal (BBF) solution based on the political equality of the two communities and in line with the relevant UN resolutions,” AKEL and BKP reiterated.
Germany donates €100,000 to the CMP
Yenidüzen, Kıbrıs, Diyalog, Avrupa
The government of Germany has signed an agreement with the UNDP ensuring the financial contribution of €100,000 to the Committee of Missing Persons (CMP) in Cyprus.
In a brief statement issued, the German Embassy in Cyprus said Ambassador Anke Schlimm and Head of Office of the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Mr Jakhongir Khaydarov signed the agreement for financial contributions to the CMP to support their ongoing work.
Gezici announced: The race will be between UBP and the CTP
Yenidüzen, Kıbrıs, Diyalog, Avrupa
Governance & Power Sharing
Turkish polling company Gezici on Friday announced the results of its first poll carried in the north regarding the upcoming early general elections to be held on January 23, 2022.
According to the results, the elections will be a race between the National Unity Party (UBP) and the Republican Turkish Party (CTP). The poll revealed that 28% of voters remain undecided on who to vote for or whether or not they will vote at all.
According to the poll, which was carried out in the north from November 27 to 29, through face-to-face interviews with 2,430 people, the other parties such as People’s Party (HP), Democratic Party (DP), Social Democratic Party (TDP) and the Rebirth Party (YDP) will also make it into parliament.
The poll revealed that the UBP is in the lead with 36.3 per cent of the votes followed by CTP 26.1 per cent. The HP is in third place with 10.8 per cent of the votes, closely followed by DP in fourth place with 9.8 per cent of the votes. TDP received 9.1 per cent of the votes and the YDP barely managed to win enough votes over the election threshold with 5.1 per cent.
Gezici had also asked the respondents to evaluate the current issues in the north. In this regard, 56.6 per cent of the respondents ticked ‘economy’ as the main problem in the country. The high prices are listed in the second place with 51.1 per cent; health problems is in the third place with 40.1 per cent. Among other problems raised by the respondents are education, unemployment, corruption, cronyism, traffic, lack of planning, unproductive public sector, environment and tourism. Among all, 17.3 per cent of the respondents said the Cyprus problem is a problem in the north.
GC who wanted to unfurl a Greek flag to remain in police custody
Yenidüzen, Kıbrıs, Diyalog, Avrupa
The Famagusta District Court on Friday ordered the Greek Cypriot arrested by police on Thursday after attempting to unfurl a Greek flag on a monument on the city’s main roundabout to remain in custody for another three days until police concluded its investigation.
He had been noticed by passers-by who had prevented him from fleeing the scene with his car. According to the police, the man said he had carried out the act upon a command handed down to him by Jesus.
He was to be given a psych evaluation on Friday. The suspect shouted out “I want freedom” in English and then “Freedom or Death” as he was removed from the courtroom.
Meanwhile, a military court in the north on Friday sentenced Turkish Cypriot M.B. to ten years in prison after finding him guilty of espionage. He was caught photographing the Famagusta port as well as the military installations with a professional camera in 2018. More than 90 photos of the facilities when discovered by police on his camera.
The police had identified M.B. was contracted by an unnamed Greek Cypriot to take the said photographs for an undisclosed amount of money.