TRNC News Today 8th December 2015

 

Akıncı: “Turkish Cypriots consider their security as guarantorship of Turkey”

President Mustafa Akıncı said: “Turkish Cypriots consider their security as the continuation of Turkey’s guarantorship.

Akinci - Guarantorship

In his assessment to the Turkish News Agency Cyprus (TAK) regarding the issues of security and guarantees yesterday, Akıncı emphasized the importance of reaching a solution which will make the Turkish Cypriots feel safe on the issues of security and guarantees. Akıncı also expressed that the public demand the continuation of Turkey’s guarantorship, and this should be respected.

Furthermore, Akıncı pointed out that the issues of security and guarantee have been left to the end due to the fact that these issues concern the three guarantor states as much as the two communities in Cyprus. Stating that the changes which will not be approved by the guarantor countries couldn’t take place in a guarantee system, Akıncı said “Therefore, it is obvious that a quintet meeting will be necessary in the final stage”.

However Akıncı said “The most important thing is how to ensure the safety of the Turkish Cypriot people and this should be within the framework of their desire”.

Akıncı: “I can’t say March”

President Mustafa Akıncı and a number of journalists had a meeting at the weekend. After he was reminded about the answer of the Turkish EU Minister and Chief Negotiator Volkan Bozkır regarding the law on free movement being blocked by Greek Cypriot Administration or not “There will be not be any Greek Cypriot administration until March”, Akıncı said: “I can’t give any date and I can’t say March”.

Akinci - can't say March

Akıncı reiterated his belief that if there is a will and intention, the resolution will come within months, adding that he gave two promises before being elected as the President, one of his promises was “to strain for a solution” and the other one was “to protect the rights of the Turkish citizens”.    (Kıbrıs Postası)

Reaction to the scenario of the postponement of the parliamentary elections

It was stated that the political parties which have strict attitudes about the Cyprus issue, reacted to the 2-3 month postponement scenario of the May 2016 parliamentary elections in South Cyprus that the Greek Cypriot leader Nikos Anastasiades expressed within the framework of the National Council meeting. The Greek Cypriot daily Politis noted the statements of one of the party leaders regarding the issue.

Parliamentary elections in south

According to the Greek Cypriot Daily Politis, the mentioned party leader said that the Greek Cypriot leader Nikos Anastasiades’ expressions about the 2-3 month postponement of the parliamentary elections is towards ‘preparing the public’. An authorized person from DIKO indicated that this thought of Anastasiades shows that there is a time schedule. On the other hand, an authority from EDEK indicated that they will not accept the postponement of the elections and in case of necessity they will take legal measures.

Furthermore, the Greek Cypriot daily Simerini indicated that the Turkish Cypriots also want the postponement of the elections in the absence of a common formula about the solution and a referendum until March, and defended that this idea was conveyed to Brussels and London by the Turkish Cypriots.

Taçoy: “Turkish Cypriot people trying to be drawn into a very risky adventure”

In his written statement, Democrat Party National Forces (DP-UG) Leader Hasan Taçoy expressed that the statements regarding Cyprus problem and the process should be questioned seriously.

Hasan Tacoy

“If the news reflected to the Greek Cypriot press after the meeting of Greek Cypriot National Council and approved by the Greek Cypriot Presidency are true, it means that Turkish Cypriot people are trying to be drawn into a very risky adventure” Taçoy added.

Furthermore, Taçoy stated that although there is not any change in the attitude of the Greek Cypriot side, a positive atmosphere is trying to be created that a solution is possible to be reached in a short time. Taçoy also expressed that President Mustafa Akıncı should make a statement regarding the news reflected in the Greek Cypriot press, adding that President Akıncı’s duty is not to consider the interests of the Greek Cypriots but never to let anyone touch upon the interests of the Turkish Cypriot people.

Özgür: “We will stand on our own feet”

Finance Minister Birikim Özgür said that the new economic program for the 2016-2018 period which will be signed with Turkey in the coming days will contribute to reduce the budget deficit and also includes reforms which are needed to create a structure to stand on our own feet. Minister Özgür added that the program came up with the needs of the country and with its demands. Özgür also reported that the 24.36 percent of the income envisaged in the 2016 budget consists of the Turkish Republic assistance and credits.

Birikim Özgür

Pointing out the role and importance of the economic stability and confidence for high and sustainable growth, Özgür said that the 2016 budget was prepared in the direction of the policies and objectives of the government programme with effective, economic and efficient use of the public resources, accountability and financial transparency approach.

Özgür also stated the government will give direction to its actions by at least a 5 percent qualified growth target each year over the next three years.

Sexual Violence against Women in Cyprus – Past, Present and Future

UNFICYP and the Home for Cooperation will host a Panel Discussion entitled “Sexual Violence against Women in Cyprus – Past, Present & Future”.

Sexual violence against women

The Panel will be held at the Home for Cooperation in Nicosia on Thursday, 10 December 2015 at 4.30 pm. The Panel will be held within the framework of activities spanning over 16 Days of Activism against Gender Violence.

Russia wants military base from Greek Cypriots

Russia wants the same military facilities from the Greek Cypriot Administration which is provided to France and Germany. According to the news of the Greek Cypriot daily Fileleftheros, indicating that they met with the Greek Cypriot Foreign Minister Yoannis Kasulidis yesterday, the Russian Ambassador to South Cyprus Stanislav Osatchiy said, “We want the same facilities that France and Germany have. We expect to sign an agreement soon.”

Although Russia has bases and ships in Syria, the newspaper indicated that Russia wants to keep South Cyprus in its hand as an option. The newspaper also pointed out that there is no reason why the Greek Cypriot Administration should not provide the same facilities to Russia which supports their thesis on the Cyprus issue.

Russia wants military base

According to the newspaper, Osatchiy handled the Moscow’s position during yesterday’s meeting with EDEK and Citizens Alliance where the developments of the Turkey-Russia relationship was discussed in the context of the tension in the relations.

EDEK leader Marinos Sizopulos expressed to Osatchiy that the Greek Cypriot Administration should also provide the same military facilities to Moscow as provided to France within the framework of the cooperation of Russia and France against the ISID.

The leader of the Citizens Alliance Giorgos Lillikas told about the letter which was sent to the President of the Greek Parliament and all parties in order to produce a parliamentary decision to sign a defence agreement with Russia on military facilities.

Stating that Moscow will support South Cyprus now as in the past, especially in the UN Security Council and on the issue of guarantees, Osatchiy argued that the UN Security Council could provide guarantees.

On the other hand; Greek Cypriot Daily Simerini reported that the Greek Foreign Minister denied that Russia asked for military facilities from the Greek side last November but Ambassador Osatchiy confirmed this claim yesterday.

Furthermore, Greek Cypriot Daily Politis reported that the statement of Osatchiy created big trouble.

Giving military facilities to Russia would be very unwise

(Cyprus Mail, December 8th. 2015)

AFTER the Paris attacks, Foreign Minister Ioannis Kasoulides announced that facilities in Cyprus were available to France in the fight against Islamic State. There had been no request for assistance from France but the government was ready to help if required, Kasoulides said. It was a commendable offer to France, illustrating the government’s desire to assist a country it considered an ally and underlining its commitment to contribute to the West’s fight against IS but it also raised some legitimate concerns.

Was it wise to suggest turning Cyprus into a staging post for air strikes against IS? Was there not a danger of turning the island into a target for terrorists? It could be argued that it would not have been made any more of a target given that Britain had already been using RAF Akrotiri for air strikes in Iraq. Last week the UK parliament gave the go-ahead for the bombing of targets in Syria by RAF fighters and this started immediately. France had not taken up Cyprus’ offer which was also repeated, a few days later, by Prime Minister Cameron at a meeting with President Hollande as a French aircraft carrier arrived in the region.

Yesterday, Russia’s Ambassador Stanislav Osadchiy announced that his country was in discussions with the Cyprus foreign ministry about the possibility of granting military facilities. He said this after meeting EDEK leader Marinos Sizopoulos and repeated it after a meeting he had later in the day with Alliance leader Giorgos Lillikas. It was a rather transparent attempt to put pressure on the government by making the issue of facilities public.

Interestingly, Sizopoulos and Lillikas had helped turn the matter into a public issue last week when they urged the government to offer military facilities to Russia, as if national security decisions were made in public by opposition parties. Greens chief Giorgos Perdikis had made the same demand, raising suspicions that the party leaders were applying pressure on the government at the behest of Osadchiy who seems to have no qualms about interfering in domestic matters. We can only speculate that the government has been unwilling to grant military facilities to Russia and the ambassador has recruited the help of party leaders.

It is bad enough having Britain staging air strikes from Cyprus and it would be unwise to offer military facilities to every country fighting against IS. In the case of Russia it would be doubly unwise given that Cyprus is an EU member with aspirations of joining Partnership for Peace and, ultimately, NATO. Offering facilities to Russia would destroy Cyprus’s efforts to join these groups and would sour relations with our EU partners. And the island would have nothing tangible to gain, as Russia would take a principled position on the Cyprus problem even if its request was turned down.

(Cyprus Mail, December 8th. 2015)

Source: TRNC Public Information Office –

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