Solve politicial deadlock: Ankara to Turkish Cyprus

Solve politicial deadlock: Ankara to Turkish Cyprus

ISTANBUL - Hürriyet Daily News
Solve politicial deadlock: Ankara to Turkish Cyprus

Turkey is dissatisfied with the current political crisis in Cyprus, EU Minister Bağış (C) says, adding that he hopes Cypriots will come to their senses. AA photo

EU Minister Egemen Bağış has said Turkey is unsatisfied with the political crisis in Turkish Cyprus and has urged its solution as soon as possible, amid growing public discontent with the administration.

A group of lawmakers from Turkish Cyprus’ ruling National Unity Party (UBP) recently issued a motion of no confidence with opposition parties, pushing the country into political turmoil. The ruling party and the opposition also agreed to hold early elections on July 28. Parliamentary elections were due to be held in April 2014.

“There is an ongoing crisis in Turkish Cyprus. We are dissatisfied with this and it is not something that can be explained rationally. I hope they will come to their senses,” Bağış told a group of reporters yesterday in Istanbul. Fierce debates erupted in Parliament earlier this month over the proposal on early elections, after opposition parties suggested holding polls on Sept. 29 in response to Prime Minister İrsen Küçük’s offer, which had suggested July 21 as the date.

Prime Minister Küçük blamed President Derviş Eroğlu for lawmakers’ support for the motion. The motion of censure, which may overthrow the government, will be discussed on May 27, according to the Constitution. The EU minister also called for a solution in the divided island based on political equality.

“If both sides agree on a solution, this is OK for us,” he said.

Bağış criticized the decision of Greek Cypriots to say no to the Annan Plan in 2004. “They [Greek Cypriots] say yes to Turkish troops on the island by saying no to the plan. If they accept the plan then there would be no troops left on the island, not only Turkish but Greek troops too.”

Turkish Cyprus also sees growing public discontent with the administration. Ankara has recently pressured Turkish Cyprus into reforming its political system and economy. Deputy Prime Minister Beşir Atalay met with Turkish Cypriot Prime Minister İrsen Küçük on April 29 and presented a comprehensive study which reflects the growing displeasure of the public over the status of the country.

EU Ministry holds grant info meeting

ISTANBUL - Hürriyet Daily News

Turkey’s European Union Ministry organized yesterday an informative meeting in Istanbul about the grant program it has launched recently, which allocates 9 million euros to media institutions and nongovernmental organizations in order to promote dialogue between civil society in the EU and Turkey.

The program, which is divided into a “Political Criteria Grant Program” and a “Media Grant Program,” will finance Turkey and EU media institutions’ and NGOs’ common projects in the two domains.

EU Minister Egemen Bağış, Mehmet Cangir, deputy undersecretary of the ministry and Bela Szombati, Deputy Head of the EU delegation to Turkey, described the details of the program. The deadline for submission to the Political Criteria Program is July 5, while media grant program submissions can be made until July 12.