> Other sample press translations from Turkish to English
In the first article, published in the mainland Turkish daily Cumhuriyet on 26 February 2008, Professor Mümtaz Soysal, who is well known for his hardline stance on Cyprus, questions the validity of welcoming the election of Dimitris Christofias as President of the Republic of Cyprus. In the second article, published in the Turkish Cypriot daily Yeni Düzen, the house journal of the Republican Turkish Party, on 27 February 2008, columnist Sami Özuslu challenges Professor Soysal’s position. Translated from Turkish by Tim Drayton.
EVERYONE is suddenly celebrating. Jubilation is in the air.
The European Union is jubilant.
So are Washington, the United Nations, London and Athens. Not forgetting Moscow.
Naturally so are the people from AKEL and, to an extent, Papadopoulos and his followers.
And Turkey’s Second Republicans and EU lovers.
And the current rulers of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus.
And, unfortunately, the AKP government which rules Turkey.
What’s it all about? The leader of AKEL, i.e. the Cyprus Communist Party, Dimitris Christofias, has won the presidential elections in South Cyprus and he was an old friend of Özker Özgür, the late leader of the Republican Turkish Party (CTP), and is a friend of the current leader, Mehmet Ali Talat.
He therefore supposedly also supports a settlement.
As though they all support a settlement and nobody else supports a settlement.
Actually, it is important to know who supports what and for what reason; there are eighty varieties of settlement.
A settlement involving uniting with the South and becoming one of its provinces.
A two-state genuine federal settlement.
A settlement within a federation with the appearance of “equality” with the other federated state when in fact it is not particularly equal.
A confederal settlement in which there are weak links between the two states.
Unification that sets aside the 1960 Treaty of Guarantee.
Unification that retains an effective Turkish military presence on the island.
Or a settlement that removes Turkish troops from the island.
If we adopt such a viewpoint, it becomes clear that all of these people who are so jubilant without fail wish, for one reason or another, for the Turkish army to leave the island.
Some of them in order to move Turkey’s EU full accession process a little further forward and secure a few more concessions.
Some of them in order to further weaken Turkey and, at the same time, to damage her prestige by placing her in a position where she loses a cause in which she is both right and strong.
Some of them in order to grind down the Turkish population on an island which has been abandoned by the Turkish army and force them to emigrate more quickly.
Some of them because they know that backwardness and anti-Republicanism will have greater room for manoeuvre in a Turkey where the army has lost standing and influence.
Celebration across such a multifaceted front has rarely been witnessed in history.
But, despite what anybody says, Turkey needs Cyprus and those who are mindful of the country’s interests and security as well as the defence of the Republic will not stand silently by as the island is pulled from beneath us and taken away.
Professor Soysal is one of Turkeys leading “hawks”.
Constitutional professor Mümtaz Soysal.
His expertise extends beyond the field of the constitution, though.
In the matter of the Cyprus issue, Professor Soysal is a veritable “professor of non-settlement”.
He is a professor who for the past 30 years has appeared on the scene with his allies during every critical period and opposed settlement proposals of all kinds.
In fact, over the past few years various other “professors” such as Hasan Ünal have appeared, but Mümtaz Soysal retains a special place.
Professor Soysal leads the band of former President Rauf Denktash’s closest supporters. Indeed, during the latter’s presidency, he held an official position as “Adviser”. He was one of the individuals who accompanied Denktash to and from bi-communal talks. Mümtaz Soysal was the most prominent among those figures who appeared on Turkish public television during the notorious 1990 elections and blatantly exploited Northern Cyprus for domestic political propaganda purposes.
At the time of the Annan Plan, he stood on the same front and opposed a settlement in Cyprus, and continues to do so.