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Baykal: Government Has Started To Give In On Cyprus Issue

   
ANKARA - Republican People's Party (CHP) leader Deniz Baykal on Tuesday critized Cyprus policy of the government stating that, ''government has started to give in on Cyprus issue.''
Speaking at his party group meeting, Baykal critized Foreign Minister Yasar Yakis because of the statements he made about Cyprus.
Baykal said the decision to make Turkey wait to start negotiations has not been in question for any of the 27 countries so far which are members or whose candidacy has become definite.
Mentioning the reasons of the decision, Baykal said one of the reasons was the doubt felt over the ''sincerity'' of the legal arrangements which Turkey made on the way to democratization.

He said, ''I can not digest this. I can not digest the hesitation by the EU side whether or not the changes fulfilled by the parliament would be implemented. I can not digest this on behalf of Turkey and parliament. It is unacceptable that evaluations are made basing on the assumption that the changes were tricks.''

Baykal said that EU member countries could not digest and find right Turkey's approaching to its membership to the union with thought that ''we should understand new government's tendency''.

Stating that date of start to negotiations was not put forward exactly, Baykal said that the date would be in the beginning of 2005 or it would probably be mid-2005.

Baykal said that the government exerted efforts to change 2005 which was put forward before decision was announced and added, ''however, nothing has changed. It became the result. It is not a preferable thing for us. It is not a result which Turkey deserved.''

Noting that periods like 1 or 2 years were not very important in history of states, Baykal said that but this decision showed Turkey's necessity to overcome some other obstacles.

Stating that Aegean Sea problem between Turkey and Greece and Cyprus problem would have to be solved during that process, he said, '' this means that Turkey's problems will increase. Turkey will enter a calendar trap of EU. Solving problems will be more difficult for Turkey.''

Recalling that elections of European Parliament (EP) would be held before 2005, Baykal said that people who gave promises to Turkey would not be in the EP after the elections.

Although all problems were expected to be solved to start negotiations with Turkey, the Greek Cypriot administration would become EU member without considering whether problems were solved or not, Baykal said.

Baykal noted, ''this is a serious decision and a policy that has to be discussed.''

Stating that this attitude could not be justified with any mentality or feeling of justice, Baykal said, ''the values we believe as basis of the EU like rights, law, justice and equality have been violated.''

Baykal pointed out that all those were made to achieve a certain political target and went on saying, ''this scenario was developed in order to direct Turkey and the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) to a certain point. Everybody has started to undertake his/her role in this scenario according to his/her understanding, policy and ethics. We see that the new government is not uneasy about this scenario and the developments.''

''We see that the government can easily digest imposition of such a scenario and launch initiatives to do what is necessary in tranquility. I feel very sad about this. The government has reached to position of playing its role in this scenario,'' Baykal said.

Baykal noted that Foreign Minister Yasar Yakis tried to prepare the public by saying that if Annan's plan was not approved till February 28, the result would be bad.

Noting that it was an inappropriate evaluation, Baykal said, ''he said, 'if we don't approve Kofi Annan's plan until February 28, then the Turkish Armed Forces in Cyprus is considered an invader army'. The first person who is not expected to make such a statement among six billion people in the world is the Foreign Minister of Turkey. Why? Because, this is a wrong word and he is the one who should know that this is wrong and he is the one who should explain this to those who don't know about the issue because this is his job. The Turkish Armed Forces does not exist in Cyprus as an invader army. The Turkish Armed Forces exists in Cyprus in line with the rights granted to it under international legal agreements. I wonder if we should explain the history to the Foreign Minister? It was an unfortunate statement.''

Baykal said that it could not be explained to anybody if the plan which hadn't be signed on December 13 wouldn't be signed on February 18 without any positive arrangement.

''It is understood that Turkey is forced to make serious concessions as it frequently happened in the past, which Turkey has never deserved,'' he said.

''Regarding the Cyprus issue, the government has started to give in to foreigners' demands. If a foreign minister can say this and insists on his words, it means that his government agrees with him. Turkey should see the real aim of these words. All of these constitute implementation phase of the policy of 'that's enough. Cyprus is a headache so let's get rid of it'. History will evaluate this,'' Baykal added.

  
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