GCC Press Review 30 Oct 2020

Front Page Headlines


Guterres provides ‘compass’ to the two

Ahead of the first informal meeting between Anastasiades and Tatar on Tuesday. He sent a clear message that they must continue to build on the existing body of work, referring to a solution on the UN resolutions framework. Tuesday is not just a social meeting. The UN expects that this will be the first, decisive step to the continuation of the dialogue. New Turkish plans and machinations on Varosha ahead of Erdogan’s arrival on November 15, despite Guterres’ call for the avoidance of provocations.

  • Al Jazeera video: Police raided the houses of Syllouris-Giovani
  • 56th seat: Third annulment by the Supreme Court for (Solidarity’s) Giorgos Papadopoulos


They are sharing the spoils in Varosha

Erdogan’s men come and go, planning the looting of the fenced town. The next step after the Anastasiades-Tatar meeting is Lute’s arrival.

  • “France is under attack”: A wave of murders by Islamists
  • G. Papadopoulos’ parliamentary seat is void again – New slap by the Supreme Court to parliament on the 56th seat.
  • Britain has given the final blow to our tourism
  • Search in the houses of Syllouris, Giovani, Pittadjis – Investigators seized documents and computers.
  • We got stuck with the costs for the investors’ audits


They are still trying to figure things out on staffing hospitals

Almost eight months since the pandemic outbreak, the Anastasiades government, DISY and the health ministry  are still trying to figure things out as regards our public hospitals that are poorly staffed and without any organisation and proper planning to properly deal with the increased coronavirus cases. Yesterday 121 more cases were recorded.

  • Guterres praised Akinci’s positive role!
  • Preparations for Erdogan’s picnic!
  • MP Giorgos Papadopoulos’ election is void for the third time

Cyprus Mail

Beheading in a French church

Three killed in knife attack inside church in the city of Nice.

  • Travellers from Cyprus will need to self-isolate on arrival in UK


The terrorism nightmare is back

Muslims in France are decapitating people shouting ‘Allahu akbar’.

  • UNSG Antonio Guterres referred to a ‘possible’ five-party meeting at the ‘appropriate stage’ – His reply to Anastasiades’ letter and what he wrote to Akinci in his farewell letter. He makes a clear reference to the joint agreement in Berlin. Turkey is annexing Varosha. It is handing it over to the Turkish organisation of housing development. Erhurman: You have crossed the limits of tolerance and patience.
  • German media on Erdogan’s stance: He is a populist; he is trying to deflect the Turkish people’s attention away from the economic crisis
  • Tragedy: A 31-year-old man who fell with his air glider in the Halepianes area, died

Main News

Guterres: New process must build on the existing body of work

Alithia, Cyprus Mail, Haravgi, Phileleftheros, Politis
Negotiations Process, External Security, CBMs, Territory, Property


The dailies report on the response by UN Secretary-general Antonio Guterres to the letter sent to him by President Nicos Anastasiades just after Ersin Tatar’s election in the north and the UN chief’s position that the procedure on the Cyprus problem must build on the existing body of work and within the UN parameters.

The visit to Varosha last Wednesday of Turkey’s Minister of Environment and Urban Planning Murat Kurum and his statements that further development would be made in the fenced area to facilitate visitors, is also featured prominently in most papers.

Cyprus Mail and Alithia report that government spokesman Kyriacos Koushos said the Cyprus government welcomed Guterres’ readiness to provide his Good Offices mission for the resumption of talks for the solution of the Cyprus problem on the basis of all that has been agreed upon, the mutual understanding achieved in Berlin on November 25, 2019 and according to the Security Council resolutions.

Guterres reiterated the availability of his Good Offices for the resumption of talks to build on the existing body of work. He also acknowledged that Anastasiades contacted Tatar for an informal meeting under the auspices of his deputy special adviser Elizabeth Spehar. He expressed hope that this first informal contact would pave the way for fruitful discussions and reiterated his commitment to explore with the two leaders as well as with the guarantor powers, Greece, Turkey and the UK, the possibility of launching an informal five-party plus UN summit at an appropriate stage.

He also called for the termination of unilateral actions that could undermine the future success of new negotiations and for the promotion of confidence-building measures (CBMs).

Koushos pointed out that Anastasiades has already submitted 21 proposals for specific CBMs with priority given to Famagusta.

Phileleftheros reports that Anastasiades said yesterday that he remains committed to the resumption of the negotiation process, stressing, however, that for realistic prospects of success a favourable environment for negotiations in good will was necessary.

The daily said this is something which certainly is not being cultivated due to Turkish actions.

Alithia points out that the wording Guterres used is indicative of the numbness at the UN after Τatar’s election since he refers to the possibility of an informal five-party meeting and makes a vague reference to that taking place at an appropriate stage.

According to Politis, Guterres’ letter provided a compass to the two leaders since he is sending out the message of support for all that has been agreed so far. It adds that the UN do not hide their concerns and hesitation deriving from, among other things, Tatar’s statements on a two-state solution and developments in Varosha.

Citing sources within the UN, the daily reports that the two leaders’ first meeting next Tuesday at Spehar’s residence in the Nicosia buffer zone is not expected to be just a casual get together since one of the main topics of discussion will be on the next steps on the Cyprus problem and the procedure. The issue of Varosha is also expected to be brought up.

The daily also reports that though the UN are not ready to scrap the procedure, Guterres does not seem to want to rush to convene the informal meeting if he is not convinced it would not lead to an impasse.

According to the daily, if the two sides agree on the continuation of the dialogue, then Guterres’ special envoy Jane Holl Lute is expected to hold contacts in Athens, Ankara and London to probe the guarantors’ intentions. Ankara’s position is the key since it needs to be clarified if it is willing to discuss a bizonal, bicommunal federal solution. After that, Lute is expected to hold contacts with the two sides and then go back to New York to brief Guterres.

Despite Guterres’ call against unilateral actions that could undermine the future success of the process, Ankara continues its plotting and plans on Varosha, the paper reported.

Phileleftheros’ main item is Kurum’s visit to Varosha and the developments expected to unfold in the near future ahead of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s visit there.

Under the headline, They are sharing the spoils in Varosha, the paper, citing reports in the TC press, reported that Varosha was handed over to TOKI, Turkey’s Housing Development Administration for the speedy redevelopment of public areas before Erdogan’s expected arrival there on November 15.

The daily cites Avrupa that reported that Varosha is Turkey’s latest trophy and the spoils are already being distributed. Local businesses saw their hopes dwindle since Erdogan wants to benefit himself so Varosha has become the feud of the last Ottoman Sultan, the daily reported.

Phileleftheros reports that just before the Anastasiades-Tatar visit, Turkey’s actions on Varosha torpedo any prospects for the resumption of the talks the way it was expressed by Guterres.

The paper also reports on the reaction by the head of the Republican Turkish Party (CTP), Tufan Erhurman against what is happening as regards Varosha.

Cyprus Mail, Haravgi, Alithia and Politis report that Guterres also sent a letter to former TC  leader Mustafa Akinci thanking him for his constructive cooperation and sincerity during the entire peace process but especially at the trilateral meeting held with Anastasiades in Berlin last year. Guterres said that though there were still challenges on the way to a comprehensive settlement he appreciated the unprecedented progress achieved during Akinci’s term as leader of the Turkish Cypriot community.

Haravgi points out that Guterres praised Akinci’s positive role.

In another article, the paper also reports that Athienou mayor Kyriakos Kareklas expressed concern that Tatar’s election may further delay the opening of a crossing at Pyroi.

Kareklas told the Cyprus News Agency that his municipality is watching with bitterness the developments in the occupied areas, which are seriously affecting the possibility of opening the Pyroi crossing. He said it was up to Anastasiades to raise the issue with Tatar, stressing they would not agree to the opening of any other crossings unless that of Pyroi is opened first.

Politis and Haravgi also host the editorial by Cenk Mutluyakali, Yeni Duzen’s director, initially published on Wednesday in which the TC journalist tells Erdogan Varosha is not his, but was forcibly taken by war. Mutluyakali also said that Varosha is not part of the ‘TRNC’ which was built on war spoils. He also points out that 133 of the 166 Turkish hotels in the north are built on GC land.

Guterres (UN)
Stands ready to provide his Good Offices mission for the resumption of Cyprob talks based on what has been agreed upon, the mutual understanding achieved in Berlin & according to the SC resolutions.
>> Resumption of talks must build on the existing body of work.  
>> Hopes the Anastasiades-Tatar informal meeting would pave the way for fruitful discussions & possibly to a five-party summit at an appropriate stage, after consultations with the guarantors.
>> Calls for more CBMs & for the termination of unilateral actions that could undermine the future success of new negotiations.
>> Praises Akinci for his constructive cooperation & sincerity during the entire peace process but especially at the Berlin meeting & appreciates the unprecedented progress achieved during his term as leader of the TC community.

Remains committed to the resumption of the negotiation process but for a chance of success, a favourable environment for the talks and goodwill are necessary.

Koushos (RoC spokesman)
Government welcomes Guterres’ readiness to offer his Good Offices mission for the resumption of the Cyprob procedure.
>> Anastasiades has already submitted 21 proposals for specific CBMs with priority on Famagusta.

Portuguese parliament adopts resolution of solidarity with Cyprus

Regional/International Relations, EU Matters


The daily reports that the Portuguese Parliament approved a resolution stressing their solidarity with Cyprus.

On the initiative of the Portuguese Communist Party (PCP), the Portuguese Parliament adopted a resolution of solidarity with Cyprus on the occasion of the 60th anniversary of the Republic of Cyprus.

Portugal’s National Assembly, in its resolution, denounces Turkey’s occupation and colonalisation in Cyprus, the illegal drilling in the Republic of Cyprus’ exclusive economic zone (EEZ) and Turkey’s threats in relation to Varosha.

The resolution also expressed its support for the resumption of talks on the Cyprus problem, for the restoration of the independence, sovereignty, territorial integrity and unity of the Republic of Cyprus and its transformation into a bi-zonal, bi-communal federation.

It points out that despite numerous UN resolutions calling for the withdrawal of the Turkish troops and settlers and the restoration of the sovereignty and territorial integrity of the RoC, and the High-Level Agreements between the leaders of the GC and TC communities, Turkey continues to occupy part of the territory of the RoC and proceeds to actions that are aimed at the illegal exploration for natural resources in Cyprus’ EEZ, violating International law.

In a comment, elsewhere in the paper, the daily reports that the resolution was rejected by Portugal’s two right-wing parties, the PSD and the CDS-PP that are members of the European People’s Party, the same political group that Cyprus’ ruling DISY is also a member of.

‘Pressure on Turkey is needed on the missing persons issue’

CBMs, Human Rights, EU Matters


The daily reports that the government and parties, in their messages to mark the Missing Persons Day, called for pressure on Turkey by the international community to cooperate on the issue of missing persons.

On the occasion of Missing Persons Day marked by Cyprus on October 29, the office of Presidential Commissioner for Humanitarian Issues said in a statement that the universal – and not selective – guarantee and respect of human rights is the responsibility and obligation of all, without expediency and tactics.

It stressed that “the culprit for this unacceptable and inhuman situation has a name and is the occupying power that refuses to cooperate sincerely and humanely to resolve the tragedy of the missing persons” by submitting data from its military archives for the mass graves of 1974, and for the intentional relocation of remains.

The Organisation of the Relatives of Undeclared Prisoners and Missing Persons, said they expect that the issue of the missing persons, and in particular the difficulties faced by the Committee on Missing Persons (CMP), would be “seriously addressed” by the UN, for the verification of the fate of all missing persons, GCs and TCs.

AKEL pointed out that despite efforts, 809 GCs and 217 TCs are still missing, 46 years later. The party said the European Parliament ‘s Permanent Observer on Missing Persons should be used to boost the overall CMP programme to make it more effective.

AKEL, but also DIKO, EDEK, the Greens and the Citizens’ Alliance, stressed, each in their own messages, the need for pressure on Turkey to provide information and allow excavations in military areas in the north.

AKEL long-time member Andriana Mishaouli passed away

Governance & Power Sharing


AKEL expressed its deep sorrow for the death of Andriana Mishaouli, the wife of Costas Mishaoulis who was murdered in April 1965 along with Dervis Ali Kavazoglou by the TC far-right, the paper reported.

Andriana Mishaouli was an AKEL member for 70 years, the party said, adding that, along with her husband they were active especially during the period the party was outlawed under British colonial rule.

After her husband’s murder, she dedicated herself to her children and remained faithful to AKEL while she was also active through the party’s women’s movement, POGO.

AKEL said it would assume the cost of her funeral which will take place on Saturday morning at the church of the Saints Constantinos and Eleni in Nicosia. AKEL MP and POGO head Skevi Koukouma will deliver the eulogy.

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