Saturday, March 23, 2019
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Turkey's threats against international energy companies that are set to receive licenses to explore for offshore oil and gas will fall into a vacuum, said Foreign Minister Erato Kozakou-Marcoullis.
"Those companies cooperating with GCA (Greek-Cypriot Administration) will not be allowed to take part in new energy projects in Turkey," said the statement released by Turkey late last week.
But Turkey's statement received a sharp response from Marcoullis, who said that it is Cyprus' sovereign right to explore for its offshore energy wealth, and that Turkey's threats once again show its true face.
"Through its announcement and the threats that it launches against companies, two of which come from the European Union, the Turkish Foreign Ministry shows once again Turkeyʼs true face. The occupying power has a heavily blemished record of violations of international law both with regard to its international and national behaviour," said Marcoullis.
Russian, French and South Korean companies are set to win licenses to explore for offshore natural gas, according to information from Commerce Minister Neoklis Sylikiotis.
The companies are Total, ENI, Kogas, Novatec and GPB Global Resources and they will be drilling for gas in Blocks 11, Block 9, Block 2 and 3. The companies will begin negotiations to wrap up the deals with the government shortly.
Blocks 2 and 3 will be explored by ENI and Kogas, an Italian-South Korean consortium. These areas are particularly sensitive as they are on an invisible border between north and south Cyprus, which has been occupied by Turkey since 1974.
Turkey has rattled its sabre several times over the last three years during Noble Energy's exploration of Block 12 and refuses to recognise a treaty between Cyprus and Israel marking out maritime limits of each country's exclusive economic zone. But as a US-based company, Noble Energy, was protected by US naval ships, which made regular patrols in the area to make the point that they will defend from any attacks by Turkey.
Analysts say that France would do the same for its energy company's interests. President Demetris Christofias signalled Italy and France's successful bids by going on a state visit to each country in recent days. In France, President Francois Hollande said that if a French company wins the contract, it will bring Cyprus and France even closer together.
Given that it has the backing of many foreign government, Cyprus will continue its policy in the field of hydrocarbons "undistracted and with determination," said the Foreign Minister.
Exploitation of hydrocarbons will benefit the state of Cyprus and advance the prosperity of all the people of Cyprus: Greek Cypriots, Turkish Cypriots, Armenians, Maronites and Latins, said Marcoullis.
At the end of last year, Noble Energy announced it had discovered a significant natural gas reservoir in Block 12 in Cyprus' Exclusive Economic Zone.

cyprus gas


Israeli Former Chief of Staff Lt. General Gabi Ashkenazi

By Selcan Hacaoglu on November 06, 2012 - - Turkey put former Israeli military chiefs on trial in absentia for ordering a deadly raid on a Gaza-bound aid ship, prolonging a dispute between the former allies even as their interests in the region converge.
Islamist demonstrators cheered outside the Istanbul court today at the start of the trial. Hundreds of supporters of the Humanitarian Relief Foundation, or IHH, the Islamic charity that organized the Gaza aid ship, waved Palestinian flags and shouted anti-Israeli slogans, television footage showed. Israel outlawed the IHH in 2008 on grounds of alleged ties to Hamas.
The suspects, including ex-chief of staff Gabi Ashkenazi, are charged with “inciting to kill monstrously and by torturing” in the May 2010 raid. Judge Umit Kaptan said today that they couldn’t be summoned to court. Israel says extremists aboard the ship attacked commandos seeking to stop it from breaking the Gaza blockade. Several plaintiffs told the court about their ordeal during the Israeli raid, which left nine Turks dead, Anatolia said today.
While Turkey won’t be able to enforce any verdict against the Israelis, the case highlights the lack of progress in mending ties between the U.S. allies at a time when their regional interests coincide.


Robert Fisk Suggests Compiling List of Ottoman Turks who Saved Armenians During 1915 GenocideOrhan Kemal Cengiz - (Todays Zaman) It has been a long time since I first read the book “Cehenneme Övgü, Gündelik Hayatta Totalitarizm” (Prisoners of Ourselves: Totalitarianism in Everyday Life) by Gündüz Vassaf, but I still remember this sentence from it. Whenever I hear the word “hero,” I cannot help but affix “totalitarian” to it.
Vassaf narrates how we escape from freedom via heroes and recreate the order again and again. Heroes are presented to us as men of sacrifice who show courage and no human weakness. They are leaders, military servicemen, religious clerics, revolutionaries, freedom fighters and others.
Every group of people has their own heroes. As we try to become like these heroes, we turn into men which the order we are in desires. I recently explored a hero who is not totalitarian. This hero does not look like the others. And we, the people of Turkey, do not know him because knowing him requires going through an unusual cognitive and spiritual process, remorse and a huge confrontation.
There is a huge paradox there. If we get to know him, we will become richer and our souls will become more at ease. However, to become familiar with him, we first have to go through a spiritual turbulence and a state of discomfort. We know that he exists thanks to foreign movies. Watching “Schindler’s List” by Steven Spielberg or “Hotel Rwanda” by Terry George, we actually witness his life. However, the culture we grew up in prevents us from getting to know him better. We do not know the meaning of rejecting to participate in a campaign of murder based on individual remorse and conscience while society and the state were committing a huge crime and that crime was becoming a part of daily life and the symbol of a new status quo.
We have Hollywood Schindlers, but movies have not been made for them in this country. Their names are not in history books. From the perspective of our formal history, they are traitors. I believe that one of the big losses associated with our failure to confront the 1915 tragedy is being deprived of not knowing them. In fact, we hold a sense of guilt in our subconscious. But we do not know the stories of those people who did not participate in heinous acts while the entire community was being involved, who refused to comply with orders and harbored their Armenian neighbors in their houses.
We do not know them. We are not aware of how Urfalı Hacı Halil, who hid his Armenian neighbors in his home for one year, bought bread for eight extra people, what he felt about the outer world when he closed the doors of his home, how his relations with the community changed or how he was afraid of the death decrees for those who harbored Armenians in their homes. For us to know and feel all these, we should first address the lies in our history and feel the atmosphere of massacre and tragedies in this country.
If we could pass these stages, we will know about not only Hacı Halil but also the Ottoman bureaucrats who did not obey orders to deport Armenians and were executed or exiled for non-compliance. Konya Governor Celal, Ankara Governor Hasan Mazhar, Kastamonu Governor Reşit Paşa, Basra Governor Ferit, Yozgat Governor Mehmet Cemal Bey, Kütahya Governor Faik Ali Ozansoy, Müntefek Governor Bedii Nuri, Lice District Governor Hüseyin Nesimi Bey and Batman District Governor Sabit Bey will all guide us on the path towards spiritual purification and serenity.
If we could bear the anguish and look at our history honestly, the religious people of this country will promote the honorable tradition of Muslims who strongly opposed the murder of Armenians in Boğazlayan, stressing that there is no killing of innocent people in the Quran. If we could look at 1915 honestly and talk openly about everything, we will start to meet the real heroes. Of course, this will come after huge pain and mourning. They will be our real heroes.
After so many years, we have made some progress towards confronting the past but there is still a long way to go. I think that these heroes will guide us on this journey. I bow to them with great respect.



Armenian Weekly correspondent Gulisor Akkum reports from Diyarbakir - Translated from Turkish by Khatchig Mouradian. - DIYARBAKIR, Turkey (A.W.) - The bell tower of Sourp Giragos Armenian Church in Diyarbakir was opened today and, after decades of silence, the bell tolled once again for Armenians.
Acting Patriarch Archbishop Aram Ateshyan, who is originally from Diyarbakir/Dikranagerd, presided over the opening ceremony, which was attended by hundreds of Armenians from Turkey and abroad.
The Sourp Giragos Foundation of the Patriarchate began the renovation of the church in 2009, and the church opened for worship in October 2011. Due to a lack of funding, however, the bell tower was not rebuilt.
At the opening ceremony of the bell tower, the head of the Sourp Giragos Foundation, Ergun Ayik, said, “This church was once a beautiful, living proof of the Armenian population density in this city. Its architecture stands as testament to how advanced Armenian civilization was.”
He added, “Our ancestors bequeathed this church to us, yet for known reason, we weren’t able to claim ownership of this heritage. The renovation marked the beginning of the process of assuming this ownership.”
The director of Aras Publishing House, Mgrditch Margosyan, in turn, recounted how 12 years ago, at a symposium on the protection of Diyarbakir’s cultural and historical heritage, speakers were only discussing fortresses and mosques. “When my turn came to speak, I brought up the issue of the churches. I suppose such messages eventually rang a bell.”
Indeed, with the moral and financial support of Diyarbakir Mayor Osman Baydemir, the renovation of the church was completed, and, once more, after decades of silence, the sound of the church bell was heard in Diyarbakir side by side with the calls to prayer from the city’s mosques. (For details on the renovation, click here.)
Built in 1376, Sourp Giragos is the largest Armenian church in the Middle East. During the Armenian Genocide, the bell tower was demolished under the pretext that it was higher than the minarets of the mosques in the city, and the church itself was used as storage space for confiscated Armenian property. After World War I, Sumerbank (a state-owned bank) used the church as storage space.


ANC Cyprus, Armenpress and Miliyet - Restoration of the Armenian church in the Turkish part of Cyprus initiated due to a contribution of USD 5 million in frames of the "Project Cooperation for Development of Nations". Not withstanding it became known that the authorities of the Turkish part of Cyprus have made a decision to grant the church to the Institute of Near East to turn it into a centre of Turkology. This decision caused tensions between the United States and the authorities of the Turkish part of Cyprus.
As reports "Armenpress" citing Turkish Miliyet newspaper the Embassy of the USA to the Republic of Cyprus issued warning regarding the violation of the preliminary agreement of exploitation of the Armenian church for "intercultural purposes". The American side declared that they are against the turning Armenian church into the centre of Turkology and said that if that happens a decree of moratorium of the contribution to the Turkish side of the island will be issued.
The Armenian Diaspora of Cyprus also is engaged in this question and made it the main topic of the visit of the "President" of Cyprus Derviş Eroğlu to New York. The Extraordinary and Plenipotentiary Ambassador of the United States of America to the Republic of Cyprus John M. Koenig announced that they are attentively watching the developments and that there is a necessity to develop new program for the exploitation of the Armenian church. After returning to Cyprus Derviş Eroğlu ordered the department of Cypriot-Turkish foundation "to solve the question".


Turkish daily Milliyet (04.11.12) reported that the “TRNC administration” came face to face with the USA on the issue of the restoration of the Armenian monastery in the occupied area of Cyprus, which is to be restored with the contribution of 5 million dollars provided by the United Nations Development Program-Action for Cooperation and Trust in Cyprus (UNDP-ACT).
The rights for the use of the Armenian monastery where given as the paper writes to the illegal Near East university (YDU) in occupied Cyprus, in order to turn it into a Turkology Institute.
However, as the paper writes, the Ambassador of the USA in “south Cyprus”, as the Republic of Cyprus is called, opposed to the construction of the institute, providing as an excuse the fact that “the conditions of the agreement were not followed”. He also threatened that the support which was to be given in the future in the “TRNC” is to be suspended.
The paper continues and writes that some American officials, recalled the signing of the agreement with the General Directorate of the Vakif foundation in the “TRNC”, which envisages the use of the monastery, which is known as “Lady Tyre Armenian church”, after its restoration, for intercultural purposes.
The paper adds that together with the USA which evaluated as “unacceptable the transformation of the monastery to a Turkology Institute”, the Armenian Diaspora in “south Cyprus” has also got into action. This issue continues the paper has been brought to the agenda as a priority issue, by the Turkish Cypriot leader, Dervis Eroglu, during his latest visit to New York for the UN meeting. After returning to the island, Eroglu gave orders to Vakif Foundation to “find a solution to the problem”.
The issue was discussed in a meeting of the so-called Prime Minister Irsen Kucuk with the Ambassador of the USA in Nicosia, John M. Koenig. Koenig has said that “Washington is watching closely the issue” and stressed also the need for a new tender to take place as regards the use of the monastery. According to the paper, Koenig has also conveyed to Kucuk the message that “it is not right for the Armenian monastery to be turned into a Turkology Institute”.
Finally, the paper writes that a high rankly official has stated to Milliyet that the “Turkish Cypriot side does not have the luxury to fight with the USA” and wonder how logical it is a Turkology Institute to be opened in an Armenian landed property.

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Turkish and Azerbaijani peoples cannot reconcile with the occupation of Azerbaijani lands and demand the immediate withdrawal of the occupied lands.
The Turkish society of fight against unfounded claims of Armenians (headquartered in Igdir) initiates the organization of movement for assistance to Azerbaijan in liberating the lands occupied by Armenia.
Tens of Turkish citizens have addressed the Igdir office of the Azerbaijani general consulate in Kars with the request to register them as volunteers in the fights for liberation of the occupied lands of Azerbaijan in case hostilities resume, Turkish media report.
By doing so the Turkish community wants to demonstrate its readiness to be always next to Azerbaijan to Armenia and help Azerbaijani brothers in liberation of the occupied lands from Armenian occupiers. The statement came from chairman of the Turkish society of the fight against unfounded claims of Armenians Goksel Gulbey.
According to him, Turkish and Azerbaijani peoples cannot reconcile with the occupation of Azerbaijani lands and demand the immediate withdrawal of the occupied lands.
"We call on the Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan not to tolerate our patience. Let him now that if war starts in Karabakh, thousands of Turks will come to the help of Azerbaijani brothers", he said.




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Kurdstat TV - Syrian rebels clashed with Kurdish armed men in the northern city of Aleppo, leaving 30 dead and around 200 captured, sparking fears of a new front in an already fractured country.
The fighting between armed rebels and members of the Kurdish Democratic Union Party (PYD), the Syrian branch of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), erupted on Friday in the majority Kurdish neighbourhood of Ashrafiyeh, it said.
“There were 30 people — Arabs and Kurds — killed in the fighting, including 22 combatants from both sides,” the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights said in a statement, adding that Ashrafiyeh is still under PYD militia control.
Some 200 people were captured, mostly by the rebels, the Observatory said.


News in Brief

► A jury in Moscow found six skinheads guilty of killing an Armenia man motivated by ethnic hatred.
► Armenia’s capital city is in the list of the most rapidly dying cities of the world, the UN report reads. It occupies the 24th place in the list. Besides Yerevan, Rome, Bucharest, Budapest, Prague, Tbilisi and Havana also are in the list.
► President Serzh Sargsyan visited Armenian frontline positions near Nagorno-Karabakh and discussed the tense situation along the Armenian-Azerbaijani “line of contact” with top military commanders last Monday.
► The number of passengers who left from and did not return to Armenia in the first nine months of this year—and by all means of transport—has constituted 97 thousand. The Armenian State Migration Agency publicized this datum, Haykakan Zhamanak daily reports.
► Kurdish rebels have claimed responsibility for a bomb attack on a natural gas pipeline in eastern Turkey.
► The blast has halted the flow of gas from Iran. It also wounded 28 Turkish soldiers who, an official said, were driving past in a military vehicle.
► World famous singer Shakira caused a stir at an international soccer tournament in Baku Saturday as she mistakenly held up a Colombian flag upside down giving the impression it was the flag from Armenia.
► According to the data of the NKR Defense Army, 250 cases of ceasefire violation by the Azerbaijani side were registered at the line of contact between the armed forces of Nagorno-Karabakh and Azerbaijan between October 21 and 27. The rival fired more than 1,200 shots from weapons of different caliber in the direction of the Armenian positions.


On Saturday 3rd and Sunday 4th of November 2012 the 35-year reunion for GEM and GEM Campers took place at the Jubilee Hotel in Troodos that brought together GEM ex-members, GEM ex-campers, spouses, friends and AYF ex-members living in Cyprus (Ex-LEMagans, Ex-SEMagans, ZOMagans, Ex HEMagans...) who revisited the old days through photos and stories from the past 35 years and engaged in hikes, educational games and fun activities.
Visit Gibrahayer Facebook for more than 200 images from the event.
click on the above link to view all 156 images of the Album of the FIRSTDay
click on the above link to view all 81 images of the Album of the SECOND Day
click on the above link to view all 81 images of the Album of the SECOND Day
click on the above link to view ALL 156 images of the Album of the FIRST Day

Gibrahayer Calendar:

► Saturday 17 November at 7:30 pm - Community gathering and public debate with ARF Dashnaktsoutiun Bureau member Mgrditch Mgrditchian, at Homenetmen - AYMA, organised on the occasion of the 122nd anniversary of ARF Dashnaktsoutiun.
View images of the event here

Wednesday 28th November 2012 at 8.00 pm Utudjian Hall - Lecture organised by the Office of the Armenian Representative “European Support Mechanism: Impact on Development and Employment” by Michalis Sarris (Former Finance Minister).
► Sunday 2 December at 12:00 - 8:00 pm - A day of fun, music and social get-together where Armenian food and crafts will be on sale all day. Organised by ARS (HOM) Cyprus "Sosse" Chapter at Homenetmen/AYMA. Join us!
► Wednesday 5 December at 8:00 pm - Literary evening organised by Hamazkayin's Oshagan Cyprus Chapter.
► Saturday 16 December - ARS (HOM) Cyprus "Sosse" Chapter will be taking part in the Stasikratous street Bazaar with its own Pavilion.
► Sunday 23 December - Sourp Asdvadzadzin Choir concert - Details to follow.
► Tuesday 25 December at 9:00 pm - Homenetmen AYMA Ball. Details to follow.

► Tuesday 1 January at 4:00 pm - Gaghant Baba visits Homenetmen - AYMA.
► Saturday 16 February - Valentine's Party at Homenetmen - AYMA organised by Hamazkayin's Oshagan Cyprus Chapter.
► Sunday 10 March 2013 at 1:00 pm - Michink Dinner organised by ARS (HOM) Cyprus "Sosse" Chapter at Homenetmen/AYMA. Details to follow.

Yerkir Media on Armenians of Syria: A video documentary
pls click here:

Photo: YERKIR MEDIA's report on Armenians in Syria:

Hrayr Jebejian -

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GILBERT SIMON singing "Chegnagh Yeraz"
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Are you in The Zone?
Encourage your children to take up tennis this year at the Tennis Zone, the new tennis academy which has begun operating on the grounds of the Junior School since the beginning of September.
Tennis provides good clean fun, while keeping them fit and away from the computer screen. Not only is it a sport that will last them a lifetime, but for those willing to put in the work, it may also be a means towards a university scholarship.
The Tennis Zone welcomes players of all abilities from beginners to advanced from the age of 4 upwards.
Call 96-441027.
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