Front Page Headlines
“No information was given to us back then”
Former Prime Minister Hakkı Atun spoke to Yenidüzen about the Kutlu Adalı murder. Atun who was prime minister when the murder of the prominent Turkish Cypriot journalist had taken place said,” even though I was the prime minister, I learned about the incident from the radio like everyone else. I was shocked. The police never briefed us and we never saw the case file.” “Since it was an issue that was believed to be connected to Turkey there was nothing we could do. What could we do?” He says there is now an opportunity to shed light on the issue.
- Galip Mendi: “We met with Korkut Eken. He had a James Bond briefcase but I didn’t know what was inside. He didn’t say anything about Kutlu Adalı.”
There are even people only buying ₺10 (€1) worth of minced meat
A healthy and balanced diet in our country has become impossible. A majority of people, who barely make ends meet, are unable to buy meat due to the steep prices. Head of the Butchers’ Association Halil Akbıçak drew attention to the bitter fact that there are now people in our country who cannot purchase meat by kilo.
- 60 per cent of vaccination will make life a lot easier – Health Ministry Undersecretary Deren Oygar said nearly 22 per cent of the population has received two doses of Covid-19 vaccines. She pointed out the necessary vaccination percentage in the country is 60 per cent.
- Not possible to submit to threats or blackmailing – President Ersin Tatar reacted to the Greek Cypriot leader.
- The motion to form a commission to investigate Kutlu Adalı’s murder will be discussed in the parliament today.
Mendi returns to the stage
Retired General Galip Mendi confirmed Attila Peker’s testimony. He also gave details on the white Renault that was spotted on site of the Kutlu Adalı’s murder.
- We are far from herd immunity – Health Ministry Undersecretary Deren Oygar gave information on the work of the Higher Board for Infectious Diseases and talked about the current situation in the fight against the pandemic.
- Mayors up in arms after municipalities put in a tight spot – Mayors of the municipalities that are members of the Municipalities Union staged a protest outside the prime ministry against the government’s decision forcing the municipalities to start making pension payments to retired mayors.
Tourism representatives react to the proposal to impose PCR test and vaccination requirement for people crossing from south to north. The Travel Agents Association blasted the government’s decision. “South Cyprus, Turkey and Greece are all working to bring tourists to their countries while the TRNC government is doing all it can to prevent tourists. We are following the developments with concern,” the association said in a written statement.
- ‘Open the crossing now’ – Shopkeepers demonstrated in Famagusta’s old town this time.
I don’t know what was in the attaché case
Galip Mendi, who served as the Director of the Civil Defence Department in 1996 and force commander of the Turkish Security Forces (GKK) from 2000 to 2002, responded to allegations regarding his involvement in the Kutlu Adalı murder. Mendi responded to Atilla Peker’s testimony that after meeting with Galip Mendi, Korkut Eken gave him an Uzi (sub-machine gun) in the room next door. Mendi said: “Eken was carrying an attaché case with him but I do not know what was in it.”
- Two flags on the Famagusta walls – Flag fetishists do not waste any time. It’s not enough for them there are flags everywhere. This time around, they have erected flag poles on the Famagusta walls by laying a concrete base at the bottom.
Tatar slams Anastasiades, says TC side will not give in to threatsYenidüzen, Kıbrıs, Havadis, Diyalog, Avrupa
Turkish Cypriot President Ersin Tatar on Wednesday lashed out against Greek Cypriot leader Nicos Anastasiades regarding his latest statements, stating that the Turkish Cypriot side will not submit to threats or blackmail.
Tatar was responding to Anastasiades who said Cyprus will not hesitate in vetoing the EU summit conclusions on relations with Turkey if Ankara does not cease its hydrocarbon activities in the Eastern Mediterranean; the Turkish Cypriot side to stop its Maraş (Varosha) Initiative, and both Turkey and the north give up on their demands for a two-state solution.
“Not only will we not accept the conditions laid out by Anastasiades that threaten both Turkey and the TRNC, but we will also not submit to the Greek Cypriot side’s hegemonic attitude on the island,” Tatar stressed.
In a defiant tone, Tatar said the Turkish Cypriot side will also not give up on its two-state solution model, which it added was fully backed by Ankara. He noted that the Turkish Cypriot side will continue with its Maraş (Varosha) initiative as well as with the hydrocarbon activities.
He accused the EU’s biased stance towards the Greek Cypriot side, arguing that as a result the Greek Cypriot side can be so impudent and resort to blackmailing. “The Greek Cypriot side’s attitude is the result of the EU admitting South Cyprus unfairly and unilaterally into the bloc,” Tatar argued, adding that the EU is using the Cyprus problem together with the Greek and the Greek Cypriot duo against Turkey.
Tatar also said the Turkish Cypriot side will closely monitor how the EU will react to the Greek Cypriot side’s threats, adding that his expectation from the bloc is to give up on its biased stance in favour of the Greek Cypriot side. “The Turkish Cypriot people will never accept being a minority in a state ruled by the Greek Cypriots. We will continue to walk on our path together with Turkey,” Tatar concluded.
Echoing similar messages, the National Unity Party (UBP) general secretary Oğuzhan Hasipoğlu urged the EU “to take the proposals submitted both by Turkey and the TRNC that are in the best interest of all relevant parties.”
In a statement issued by the party, Hasipoğlu also said the EU must not submit to the threats waged by Anastasiades. “It is not possible to establish peace and stability on the island or in the region should the Greek Cypriot side, which has rejected all the solution plans to date, continue with its maximalist approach,” Hasipoğlu stressed, adding that there are two states on the island.
“No one can disregard the fact that Maraş (Varosha) is in the TRNC nor can they reject Turkish Cypriots’ rights in the Eastern Mediterranean,” Hasipoğlu stressed. He added that “it is also not possible to disregard the existing agreements between the TRNC and Turkey.”
“Everyone must know that the Turkish Cypriot people or Turkey will never give up on their righteous struggle and will never hand over our rights to Greek and the Greek Cypriot duo or their supporters,” Hasipoğlu concluded.
>> TC side will not abandon its position in favour of a two-state solution, cease hydrocarbon activities or its plans to reopen Maraş (Varosha).
>> EU should abandon its biased stance.
>> EU must take proposals submitted by the Turkey-TC side as this is in the best interest of relevant parties.
>> EU must not submit to threats waged by Anastasiades.
>> Not possible to achieve peace & stability in the region or solve the Cyprob as long as the GC side continues its maximalist approach.
>> No one can disregard that Maraş (Varosha) is TRNC soil or reject TCs’ rights in East Med.
>> TCs & Turkey will never give up their rights.
Maronites allowed to cross south on Sunday to voteYenidüzen, Kıbrıs, Havadis, Diyalog, Avrupa
Turkish Cypriot member of the bicommunal Technical Committee on Health Jale Refik Rogers on Wednesday said that Maronites living in the north will be allowed to cross over to the south on Sunday to cast their votes in the election taking place in the southern part of the island.
Speaking during a programme on Ada TV, Rogers, who is also an MP from the People’s Party (HP), said she received information from the health ministry that Maronites living in Kormacit (Kormakitis) will be exempt from any restrictions at the crossing points on Sunday so that they can cross over to cast their votes.
“We do not have any time to waste on the issue of the crossings,” Rogers said, adding that HP is supportive of the demonstrations organised by the Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Shopkeepers and Artisans (KTEZO).
Rogers also urged the Turkish Cypriot leader to “exert more pressure on the EU officials regarding sending more vaccines to the Turkish Cypriots. She added that the Turkish Cypriot community had been promised 20 per cent of what had been dispatched to the south but only six per cent has been delivered to date.
Earlier on Wednesday, HP leader Kudret Özersay pleaded with the Turkish Cypriot authorities to allow the nearly 180 Maronites residing in the north to be allowed to cross to the south on Sunday to cast their ballots.
In a social media post, Özersay pointed to the upcoming parliamentary elections in the south and added that the Maronite community, who live in the north together with the Turkish Cypriots, will elect their representative in the Greek Cypriot parliament as well.
He pointed out that the uncertainty regarding the reopening of the crossings continued with some exemptions for daily crossings for education, work or health purposes. He said nonetheless these exemptions do not include Maronites crossing to the south to cast their ballots.
“The crossings could have been opened weeks ago. They should have been reopened,” Özersay said, arguing that there is a deliberate intention to slow down the process. He added that it is still not certain whether the crossings will be reopened before the weekend or not, pointing out the contradictory statements given by the Turkish Cypriot leadership and by the government.
“The least the authorities can do if the reopening of the crossings will be postponed to next week is to allow the nearly 180 Maronites to cross to the south for several hours to cast their ballots on Sunday,” Özersay concluded.
In the meantime, Deren Oygar, Undersecretary at the Turkish Cypriot Health Ministry, said the Turkish Cypriot side will allow crossing of people from the south provided that they can present proof of full vaccinations well as a valid negative PCR test obtained within the last 72 hours.
Speaking to Turkish Cypriot news agency TAK, she also noted that the bicommunal technical committee on health wanted to reopen the crossings about a month ago, but the south side had to implement a lockdown therefore delaying the process.
“Due to a technical difference between the two sides, it was decided to first agree on a common ground before reopening the crossings. Once the date for a meeting is identified, the issue of crossings will be discussed and concluded,” Oygar noted, adding that the global system based on colour coding of risk categories will also be implemented at the crossings.
Meanwhile, Republican Turkish Party (CTP) MP Erkut Şahali also demanded the authorities to reopen the crossings without any further delay. In a social media post on Wednesday, Şahali also gave support to the KTEZO demonstrations.
22 per cent of the TC community vaccinatedYenidüzen, Kıbrıs, Havadis, Diyalog, Avrupa
Deren Oygar, Undersecretary at the Turkish Cypriot Health Ministry, said 127,000 doses of vaccines have been administered in the north to date, adding that the figure corresponds to 22 per cent of the Turkish Cypriot community.
Speaking to Turkish Cypriot news agency TAK, Oygar noted that 52,000 of the people received only one dose of the coronavirus vaccine so far.
“Once 60 per cent of the community is vaccinated, the community will be close to returning to normal conditions,” Oygar said, adding that more doses of vaccines are expected to arrive in the coming days.
She also noted that the Higher Board for Infectious Diseases holds weekly meetings to evaluate the developments and statistical information received from Turkey, south Cyprus, Europe and other countries.
“The board’s decisions are based on the statistical data it receives and evaluates,” Oygar said, adding that economic difficulties are also taken into consideration. She added that the scientific advisory board provides guidance however each sector has its dynamics.
“For example, the Higher Committee for Infectious Diseases had recommended reopening of the schools in April however it was not possible due to different dynamics in the education sector,” Oygar said.
Responding to a question on the AstraZeneca vaccines, Oygar said there have not been any side effects reported after administering the AstraZeneca vaccine in the north. She added that the age threshold for the AstraZeneca vaccine has now been dropped to 30 years old.
Flag poles raised over Famagusta’s Ravelin gate causes outrage
The flags erected over Famagusta’s Ravelin (Akkule) gate on Wednesday caused widespread outrage among civil society organisations and the general public in the north sparking a new debate. Two flag poles sealed on a cement platform were erected above the historic gate upon instructions by the Civil Defence Organisation and permission from the Famagusta District Office, without the knowledge or approval of the Department of Antiquities and Museums.
Commenting on the issue during a web TV programme, Director of the Department of Antiquities and Museums Nazım Ced complained that the poles had been put up without their approval or knowledge. He said that they will do all that is necessary to make sure the poles are removed but explained that the department does not have tools of enforcement.
People on social media blasted the authorities, accusing them of acting on false notions of nationalism and patriotism. The Famagusta Initiative on Wednesday described the incident as the destruction of Famagusta’s cultural heritage.
“Famagusta Old Town is a 2,300-year-old cultural heritage site that was home to dozens of civilizations,” the Initiative stressed, adding that “it is obvious that those who want to satisfy their nationalist cravings have no respect for the city.” The Initiative concluded by demanding the flag poles be removed, the damage repaired and those responsible for the damage to be taken to court.