TRNC News Today 27th April 2015

Akıncı: “We are turning a new page”

Independent candidate Mustafa Akıncı, who won the Presidential elections, addressed the people at İnönü Square last night. In his speech, Akıncı thanked the people for their contributions to this process of democracy and expressed that a new process has started Mustafa Akinci - New Presidentwith new hopes. “We are turning a new page. It should not be forgotten that I will also be the President of supporters of Eroğlu. I wish Eroğlu health, peace and success in his future life. If Mehmet Ali Talat or Eroglu want to consult with me, I am ready because this country belongs to all of us, the future of the country interests all of us” President Akıncı said.  Underlining that he would stand behind his words he expressed during the election campaign, Akıncı said that it should be very well known that he will follow a solution-oriented policy supported by confidence building measures. Adding that Greek Cypriot leader Nikos Anastasiades called and congratulated him, President Akıncı said that he will meet with Anastasiades at the first opportunity because this country has not any other patience to lose time.

Furthermore, Akıncı said that the UN Secretary General’s Special Advisor on Cyprus Espen Barth Eide called and congratulated him and he added that he wants to meet and discuss the way to be followed with Eide who will arrive on the island on May 4.  Akıncı also said that he conveyed to Eide that he is ready with goodwill to make cooperation with the UN because they will need the UN’s contribution in their studies for a solution. Stating that they will conduct the negotiation process to reach a solution agreed by the two sides, Akıncı said that they will try to understand the other side’s approach by developing empathy.

Akıncı also indicated that a lot of pain was experienced on these territories in the past. Stating that Turkish Cypriots suffered more in 1950-1960’s but Greek Cypriots also suffered in 1974, Akıncı said “It is time to relieve our pain. Former generations experienced pain so the next generations should experience blessings and beauties of the Ercan Airportisland. “Stressing that the Varosha issue, trade from Mağusa Port and direct flights from Ercan Airport should be discussed as a package at the negotiation table, Akıncı said that he will discuss these issues with his collocutor.  Adding that they will not forget a comprehensive solution supported by confidence building measures, Akıncı said that they will spend efforts to reshape the future of the island. Criticizing that sometimes he is being accused as an enemy of Turkey, Akıncı mentioned the relation that he wants to establish with Turkey and said “We will be neither in conflict nor submissive but reconciliatory. It is beside the point to be in conflict with Turkey.

In addition, Akıncı said “I knew the importance of Turkey for the Turkish Cypriots. Turkish Cypriots should be the owner of their own institutions and manage them well not in a partisan way. We will be the master of our home.”  Akıncı stated that he will keep his promise for being an objective and independent President in his duty. Expressing that he will treat all parties equally, Akıncı said that he will do whatever is necessary to make the rule of law valid in the country. Adding that the olive branch which was used in his campaign is a symbol of peace, production and taking root in these territories, Akıncı said that he would be a follower of these symbols and the future of the island will be shaped with the people whatever the language, religion, colour, origin, political view is.  At the end of his speech, Akıncı thanked his family for their support.

Biography of Mustafa Akıncı

Mustafa Akıncı was born in Limassol on 28th December 1947. After he graduated from Middle East Technical University, Faculty of Architecture, he settled down in Lefkosa. In 1975, he was elected to the Constituent Assembly of the Turkish Federated State of Cyprus. He was elected as the Mayor of Lefkosa Turkish Municipality when he was only 28 and served for an uninterrupted term of 14 years from 1976 to 1990.

During his 14 years of Mayorship, he collaborated with the then Nicosia Greek Cypriot Mayor on the implementation of the Nicosia Sewerage Project and the Nicosia Master Plan. In this context, the Nicosia Master Plan received the ‘World Habitat Award’ in 1989 and the ‘Aga Khan Award for Architecture’ in 2007. Additionally, in 2003, Akıncı and his Greek Cypriot counterpart were awarded the prestigious ‘Europa Nostra Medal of Honour’.Europa Nostra logo

Akıncı also played a vital role in the establishment of the Union of Turkish Cypriot Municipalities in 1983, of which he then became the first president. From 1987 to 2001, he served as the leader of Communal Liberation Party (TKP).

Between 1993 and 2009, he carried on as a parliamentarian at TRNC Assembly. He has also served as the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Tourism between 1999 and 2001. During the period of the Annan Plan in 2003, he was the founder and the leader of the Peace and Democracy Movement (BDH). After the establishment of the Communal Democracy Party (TDP), he handed over his duty of leadership. He also attended famous international academic platforms such as Oxford, Harvard and Yale universities and gave conferences and participated as a speaker related to the Cyprus issue at international forums such as Chatham House. In 2010, Akıncı published his first book entitled “14 Years as a Mayor.” Akıncı is 68 years old, knows fluent English and he is married with three children and two grandchildren.

Eroğlu congratulates Akıncı

President and independent presidential candidate Dr. Derviş Eroğlu made a statement to the press following the announcement of the election results and celebrated Mustafa Akinci who won the election and wished him success.

Eroğlu stated that the election held yesterday is the last political Akinci and Erogluelection in which he took part and added that the people gave a message to the political parties rather than him. Eroğlu pointed out that he will not abandon politics and will continue to express his opinions.

Derviş Eroğlu referred to what he did for the negotiations during his post and stated that he will always feel honoured with the point achieved.

Eroğlu thanked everybody who supported him and expressed that if there is any duty that should be fulfilled he will be ready for this. Eroğlu said “This is the last election that I  will take part in, I explained this in advance. The phase of my political life to be elected or not to be elected is ended with this election”.

Stating that rather than him, the political parties should receive the message from results of the election, President Eroğlu said “The citizens gave a message to the political parties not to Eroğlu. There are lessons that should be taken by the political parties, I hope they do”.

Eroğlu celebrated Mustafa Akinci and stated that if Akinci requests, he will consult with him and share his opinions concerning the negotiations.

Elections were held “calm and quiet” according to foreign media

International media institutions were on the island at the weekend in order to follow the second round presidential elections. Aljazeera English logoBesides many press members, there were also some channels that were in Lefkosa such as France 24, Agent France Press, Associated Press, Reuters, Euronews and Al Jazeera English for informing the winner of the election. The Al Jazeera team reported that elections of the TRNC were held very ‘calm and quiet’ compared with other countries. Zeina Khodr said that both of the supporters expressed their views definitely and their views were clear enough.

TRNC Public Information Logo imageSource: TRNC Public Information Office

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