TRNC NEWS TODAY – 29th MARCH 2013  

PRESIDENT EROGLU: “ECONOMIC CRISIS OF SOUTH CYPRUS IS AN OPPORTUNITY FOR A SOLUTION”

President Derviș Eroğlu stressed in a workshop arranged at the Middle East Technical University North Cyprus campus about Cyprus issue that the economic crisis experienced in South Cyprus is an opportunity to reach a solution  in the island.

President Eroğlu stated that the possibility of transferring the natural gas with the pipeline to Turkey to be explored off the coast the island can be in a ‘win-win atmosphere’ for both the Turkish and Greek Cypriots.  Eroglu added that the attempt to give out bonds in exchange for natural gas revenues was violating the Turkish Cypriot’s rights and this cannDervis Erogluot be accepted.

Pointing out that the negotiations between the leaders has come to a standstill after the last summit in January 2012, Eroğlu said that the reason of this issue is, the Leader of the Greek Cypriots, Christofias continued the decision of the Greek Cypriot National Council at the summit.

Stating that upon a proposal of the Turkish side, both sides’ technical committees are continuing to work regarding the improvement of daily life and a success has been achieved although it is limited Eroğlu said that the most concrete example of this is the step taken for the restoration of Apostolos Andreas Monastery which is one of the most important cultural assets of the TRNC and humanity. Eroğlu continued that: “The progress made in this issue is the result of the initiative proactive policy of the Turkish Cypriots”.

Expressing that the fire fighting drill organized at the buffer zone during January 2013 was also the success of the crisis management Technical Committee, Eroğlu mentioned that “These drills show that if it is desired and there is a political will, positive progress can be made related to daily life”.

Mentioning that since 1968, when the negotiations started, different plans have been issued, Eroğlu said that: “We have been discussing the same issues when we have a look at the point arrived. The Cyprus problem has not any point which has not been discussed. All methods and suggestions are almost finished. The lack of political will is clear and this is caused by the Greek Cypriots.

Stressing that the Turkish Cypriots had equal rights over all the island’s natural resources, Eroğlu said that the Greek Cypriots were ignoring this and trying to use the natural gas as collateral as a way out of the economic crisis they were facing. Greek Cypriot Administration will deepen the lack of confidence by unilateral activities in the island. The Turkish side is determined to protect the rights in the area. The Turkish side wants the Greek Cypriot side to make cooperation with the Turkish side to overcome their economic difficulties. Cooperation with the Turkish side may create a ‘win-win atmosphere’ for both sides. A process without the willpower of the Turkish Cypriots cannot be valid.

Regarding the critics that he did force the former Greek Cypriot leader for a solution, Eroğlu said critics were unfair.  

DAVUTOGLU STATES THREE ALTERNATIVES FOR A  SOLUTION

Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu stated that the Turkish Side has presented the Greek Cypriot Administration three alternatives for a solution to the Cyprus problem.

“It’s either permanent division or a settlement” Davutoglu said.

Speaking to reporters on his way to the capital of Georgia, Tbilisi, the Turkish Foreign Minister said that hopes for a settlement had been  revived with the election of Nicos Ahmet DavutoğluAnastasiadis as the new Greek Cypriot Leader.

Davutoğlu said there are three options: the immediate resumption of talks for a comprehensive political settlement between the Turkish and Greek Cypriots within a set timeframe; or if this were to fail, the establishment of a joint committee of Turkish and Greek Cypriot representatives to decide on how to share the hydrocarbon reserves between the two communities in the absence of a political settlement; and finally a two-state solution that would mean permanent partition of the island.

He said that all revenues to be generated from the natural gas should be saved in bank accounts to be used for building the new partnership state once a settlement is reached.

“Should the Greek Cypriot side reject both proposals, claiming ownership of all resources discovered in the South of the island, then they would have made their intention clear and we would be ready to negotiate a two-state solution”  Davutoğlu added.

The Turkish Foreign Minister said that Turkey was for the first time in 30 years openly supporting a stance in favour of a two state solution.

Commenting on claims that Russia was negotiating with the Greek Cypriot side for a base on the island in exchange for financial assistance, Davutoğlu said that this was not possible under international law and that there was no need to take such debates seriously.

“Such a move would be a violation of Cyprus’s international treaties. It’s just not possible” he said.

ÖZGÜRGÜN: “THE STATEMENT OF GREEK CYPRIOT SIDE SHOWS THAT THEY DO NOT INTEND FOR A SOLUTION”

TRNC Foreign Affairs Minister, Hüseyin Özgürgün stated that the claims of Greek Cypriot Defence Minister Fotis Fotiu that ‘he will save Cyprus from foreign troops, settled people and intervention right (of Turkey)’ constitutes a contradiction with the existing realities and also shows that Greek Cypriots have no intention of solving the Cyprus problem. 

Foreign Minister  stated that in the statement of Fotiu, where he attacked Turkey as “occupant”, he claimed that he struggles for finding a just and sustainable solution to Cyprus problem. In a written statement, Foreign Minister Hüseyin Özgürgün emphasized that tHüseyin Özgürgün  2he Greek Cypriot side’s insistence on talking about invasion in Cyprus by ignoring the reality that Turkey is in Cyprus within the framework of international agreements, is proof of their intention to continue their provocative attitudes.

Stating that the continuation of Turkey’s active and effective guarantee in Cyprus is a sine qua non of a comprehensive solution for the TRNC people and it is the principle of a lasting solution which was also supported by the United Nations, the Foreign Minister stressed that it is out of the question for the Turkish Cypriot side to give concession on this subject. Özgürgün said:

“Hereby, we want to call the Greek Cypriot side to give up its negative attitude and to underline that the Turkish Cypriot side is determined to continue the negotiations within the framework of solution parameters.”  
Stating that the Turkish Cypriot side expects the Greek Cypriot side to exhibit good intention and friendly effort like the Turkish Cypriot side, Özgürgün reminded that the efforts of Greek Cypriot authorities for changing the agenda by using such statements are useless. 

ATTACK ON TURKISH FLAG IN SOUTH CYPRUS

Some Greek Cypriots who have been waiting for the re-opening of the banks in Lefkoşa for more than 10 days attacked an unidentified man Turkish Flagwho carried a French passport and unfurled a Turkish flag.

Greek Cypriot police saved the man who is thought to be between age of 30 and 35 from a lynching attempt by an angry crowd, Turkish Cypriot news agency reported. A Greek Cypriot youngster took the flag from the French man and then  the Turkish flag was burned while the man was detained by the police. It was underlined that while the group was attacking the French Tourist 4 Greek Cypriot police officers did not do anything to stop the attack.

It was also noted that news agencies like CNN, BBC and Reuters were recording the attacks and it was watched in France, German, Russia, China and some other countries. However Greek Cypriot news agencies did not mentioned the attack in their news.

NEW BANK WILL BE ESTABLISHED IN GREEK CYPRIOT SIDE

Greek, Greek Cypriot and Russian businessmen applied to Greek Cypriot Central Bank to open a new bank.

Greek Cypriot Filelefteros Newspaper stated that the bank will have 30 million Euros capita. It was noted that the founders are former Greek Cypriot Finance Minister Harilos Stavrakis and former Greek Cypriot Stock Market Head Dinos Papadopulos and some other Russian businessmen.

Source: TRNC Public Information Office