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Home arrow newsitems arrow Cyprus' Election Boosts Conservatives, while also Welcoming New Parties + Citizens' movements

Cyprus' Election Boosts Conservatives, while also Welcoming New Parties + Citizens' movements

Written by ACM
Sonntag, 22 Mai 2016

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*Strasbourg/Angelo Marcopolo/- The Governing in Cyprus Center-Right, ChristianDemocrat/EPP Party "DISY", (of President Nicos Anastasiades), not only came anew First in the Parliamentary 2016 National Elections, (Confirming most of the Popular Support it had Gained between 2011-2013), but it also Succeeded Now to Augment its Lead vis a vis the Second Party, AKEL of the Left, which it Distances in 2016 with More than + 5,02%, instead of just + 1,5% Back on the Previous, 2011 Election, (with almost 31% against 25% Now, instead of just 34,2% against 32,7% in the Past, respectively). The Third Party, DIKO's Centrists, remain at almost 15% (See Infra).

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Considering the Fact that Cyprus is due to take over, this year,  Paneuropean CoE's rotating Presidency for the period of November 2016 - May 2017, and it has just assumed the Important Responsibility to Chair CoE''s Ministerial Committee's Human Rights meetings, crucial for ECHR Judgement's Implementation, as New Vide-President since May 18, (i.e. more than 22 Years after its Previous CoE Presidency, back on 1994-1995 ; See "Eurofora" co-Founder's rfelevant Publications, then, via PIO/CNA, etc), even the Internal Political Developments in that Strategicaly located EU-Member Country, (added to the Sensitivity of the so-called International "Cyprus' Issue" vis a vis mainly Turkey), have, Today, an increasing Interest for large European Circles. (F.ex., Russian MEPs' eventual Return into CoE's Assembly is due to be Negotiated apparently during Cyprus' Presidency of Strasbourg's PanEuropean Organisation. While even ways to overcome the recent Aggravation of Human Rights and Democratic principles' Violations by Turkey may be examined also during that same period, since the Current, Estonian CoE's rotating Chairmanship, from May to November 2016, independently of its Efficiency, would probably Not have Enough Time to Settle all these matters). 

+ In addition, from a European Union perspective, Cyprus' DISY is tha Only Governing Party in the EU, which had to Implement a particularly Harsh, Austerity Program, but Succeeded to Get Out of that "Memorandum" supported by the EU, with the Economy Starting anew to Grow and Unemployment to Fall repeatedly, while, at the Same Time, it Consolidated its 1st Place, even with a Bigger Distance than before vis a vis all Other Parties, rightfuly observed its current Leader, Experienced former Minister, Averof Neofytou.  - EU (and €uroZone) Member "Cyprus is becoming a Succes Story", and its "People .. who Suffered", "should be Proud", stressed earlier the PanEuropean President of ChristianDemocrat/EPP Parties, Joseph Daul, who had Visited recently the Island, and met with with Anastasiades and Neofytou, dealing also with the Political Issue and the Talks for ReUnification with the Part still Occupied by Turkey's Military since the Invasion of 1974.
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However, President Anastasiades (who remains in Power until 2018), pointed at an exceptionaly augmented Abstention, (more than 33%, which is Unprecedented in Cyprus). Participation Fell indeed, from more than 78% back on 2011, to about 66% on 2016. A Higher level had been reached with 82% in the 2013 Presidential Election, which Evicted AKEL's Hristofias and was brillantly Won by Anastasiades, as a logic Aftermath of the unprecedented Popular Uprisings, since July 2011, against Hristofias' controversial and unpopular latest dealings on the National Political Issue of Cyprus, on Economy and on the scandal of the Deadly Explosions of Confiscated Arms inialy destinated to Syria via a Foreign Ship, added to various Denunciations for alleged Discriminations and/or AntiDemocratic Behavior against Dissident Journalists by some of his main but inexperienced assistants, etc., (See, f.ex. : http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/cypruspeopleaskchristofiastoresign.html ).      


Indeed, Added to a + 12% More Abstentionists in 2016, compared to 2011, (Comp. Supra), anOther Unprecedented Novelty is the Emergence of a kind of "3rd Pole" composed by a Record High Number of various New Parties, and/or Newcomers at the Parliament, (i.e. who Won Now enough Votes in order to get Elected MPs for the 1st Time), Totaling about 25 % of the casted Votes.


On the Contrary, almost All the Mainstream and Pre-Existing Parties now Lose more or less of their Past Voters : The Worst Losses affect the main Opposition's Party AKEL (Left), with - 7 % Less, (while former President Hristofias' controversial former Spokesman, Stefanou, after Falling ...Last, at the 5th Rank, in the latest, 2015 Internal AKEL Elections for AKEL's central Committe, is Now even Bypassed by AnOther MP of his Party, Mrs Irini Haralampidou, who gets + 2.000 More Votes, as Local Media pointed out),  but also the Socialists and even the Center-Right DISY Party, with a Loss of almost or more than - 3 %, respectively,  followed by the Centrist Party of DIKO (led by the Son of former President Tassos Papadopoulos, Nicolas), which Limits its Losses Only to - 1,3%, (Surprising Pollsters who hadn't foreseen that it would manage to Stay at 14,5 %).


But the brand New Parties of "Citizens' Alliance" and of "Solidarity Movement", (created by former "DISY" MEP at EU Parliament, where she is still Member, Helen Theocharous, one among the most Popular MEPs in terms of Votes),  Win, for the First Time, More than 6 % and 5,23 % of Votes, respectively.  They are closely Followed by the Pre-Existing, but Doubling their Votes, Parties of the "Greens" with "Allied Citizens", and the Rightists of "ELAM" ("National Popular Front"), who Both Win + 2,6% More Votes Now (on 2016), than what they had in the Past (2011), Reaching up to a Total of 4,81% and 3,71% respectively. Ten Other, much Smaller, various Tiny New Parties, gather, All Together, almost 3% of the Votes, but don't have enough in order to be represented in the Parliament this time, remaining without any MP.           

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From a purely Political point of view, the Main Thrust of those "Newcomer" MPs, clearly points towards the Right side of the Political Spectrum : "Solidarity" Party's Leader, Theocharous, always was, and still is, a ChristianDemocrat/EPP MEP, (formerly of DISY Party), well known in Strasbourg, and even, notoriously, considered to Support more "Conservative" Values than the average Center-Right MP. But, probably, the Most Important Development, in this regard, is the Entry into Cyprus' Parliament, for the 1st Time in the History of the Country, of 2 Representatives from the Rightist, "ELAM" Party, ("National Popular Front"), considered to stand near Greece's "Golden Dawn" controversial Rightist Party. Even at an entirely Different register, the Experienced, long-time Leader of the "Greens" and "Allied Citizens"'  Party, Georges Perdikis, is not only an Ecologist, but also a consequent Political Fighter for the National cause of Cyprus, particularly for respect of Human Rights, and of the Unity and Sovereignity of the Country. So that, despite their Differences, Most of those "New" Forces could forge some unexpected Political Convergences on certain Key points, at least as far as tha National Issue of Cyprs is concerned, (Comp. Supra). Something Similar might, eventualy, occur even as far as it concerns the Leader of the "Alliance of Citizens" New Party, former Foreign Minister, (and former Candidate to the Presidential Elections), Georges Lillekas, (See Infra). Meanwhile, the Fact that Outgoing MP Nikos Koutsou had earlier chosen to Join that "Alliance of Citizens", indicates also possible Right-wing componentsd, at least partly.

But the Greatest "Novelty" in these, May 2016, Elections, obviously is, for Cyprus, the Multifacet Emergence of an Unprecedented Importance of the various roles that "Citizens" can play in nowdays Political Life. This New Phenomenon might have some Similarities, but, in fact, seems completely Different from that of "Ciutadinos"' Liberals in Spain, and/or from the "Freie Bürger" Rightists in Germany's mainly local/Regional Elections, since in Cyprus it stems from the unprecedented July-August 2011 Popular Uprisings against Hristofias' controversial Behavior then, (Comp. Supra), which had affected several victims, bringing Together the Legitimate Reactions of Socio-Politicaly Various kinds of People, woth from the Left and the Right sides of the Political Spectrum. They are Present in Today's Elections, from at least 3 concrete points of view : First, thanks to the Succes of the "Citizens Alliance" Party, which Won more than 6% of the Votes. Second, by the Bew Coalition between "Greens" and "Allied Citizens", which Won amùpst 5% pf Votes. Third, by President Anastasiades' particuliar stance vis a vis Citizens' active participation in the Political Life : After an Initial Intervention, already back on July 2011, to Condemn former President Hristofias' Order for the Police to Brutaly Disperse Thousands of Protestors gathered, Each Day, in front of an Entry to the Presidentual Palace's garden, and Defend Citizens' Right to Peacefuly (even if Criticaly and Loudly) and Massively Protest, Anastasiades also Included in his Political Program, a long series of Institutional and Legislative Reforms for Transparency and Accountability of Public Administration, Fight against Corruption, Consultation of legitimately Concerned Citizens, etc., which were added also to the Appointments of several Persons who have played a notable role in Citizens' Movements, at various Posts of Responsibility, (etc). One may say that he has become, after July 2011 Events, the Most "Citizen-Friendly" President in the History of the Republic of Cyprus, (despite Hard Problems to resolve and/or some unavoidable Errors, etc). A Big Change, compared to his own, Previous Political career, which Started since the July 2011 Events, and evolved further during and after the February 2013 Presidential Elections until now, adding to the overall emergence of Citizens' Movements in the Political Life of Cyprus, (Comp. Supra).


Last, but not least : Is, really, the above mentioned Diminution of the Left (mainly AKEL, and, to a Lesser extend, also Socialists, etc), a General and quasi-Structural Phenomenon, at least for this period of Time, or, rather, a Consequence of certain Errors committed, particularly on 2011, by former President Hristofias and some of his assistants, (including for eventual Abuse and/or Corruption accusations, etc) ?


It's Difficult to say, especialy since these are often InterRelated Factors. But several Converging Facts seem to indicate that the 2nd Hypothesis might contain a Large part of Truth : Indeed, as Cyprus' Media immediately observed, it's Mainly at Hristofias' own, former long-time Constituency, Kyrenia, (Occupied by the Turkish Army, and notorious Base of some among the Most politicaly Active Greek Cypriot Refugees), that AKEL marks the Heaviest Losses, Falling Down more than - 10 %. Moreover, his controversial former Spokesman, Stefanou, is Bypassed Today by a Simple MP as Mrs Irini Haralampidou, who takes +2.000 Votes More. This is Added also to the Fact, that, just 1 Year earlier, on 2016, Stefanou reportedly came Last, (Fifth among Five Candidates), even in AKEL's Internal Elections of Members of its Central Committee. On the Contrary, the current Leader of AKEL, Andros Kyprianou, might Not bear the main Responsibility for his Party's Heavy Losses in 2016, since, in the Previous Parliamentary Elections, Back on May 2011, when he Also Headed AKEL, on the Contrary, it Won + 1,4% and 1 MP more, apparently Because that Vote had taken place BEFORE the Heaviest Errors of Hristofias and of some of his Assistants Started to Aggravate and/or be Revealed to a Larger Public, particularly since the Beginning of July 2011, which notoriously led to an Unprecedented in the History of Cyprus, Popular uprise, (including, f.ex., by Daily Mass Demonstrations out of the Presidential Palace, attempts for Impeachment, etc), which  Boosted the Right side of Cyprus' Political Spectrum and various Forms of New "Citizens"' Movementts, (Comp. Supra).

 

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Meanwhile, it seems that one among the most frequently recurrent Questions in Cyprus' Internal Politics, i.e., with Whom the Centrist Party "DIKO" might become Ally in order to forge an Absolute Majority, Both immediately, f;ex. for the Vote of the Annual Budget and/or other Important Drafts in the National Parliament, but also, Later-on, in the forthcoming Presidential Elections of 2018, has already Started to be Raised, in real Practice : A clear Indication appeared to be, among others, also an unusual Photo of DIKO's current Leader, Nikolas Papadopoulos, Surrounded by DISY's Leader Averof Neofytou, as well as DISY's Top MEP Stella Kyriakidou, (Head of Cyprus' Delegation to CoE's Assembly in Strasbourg, where she currently Chairs its Committee of Social Affairs, and who has just Won a Record High Number of Votes in the Constituency of Capital City Nicosia), and Speaking with the first, during the Official Anouncement, at the Ministry of Interior, of the Final Results of the present Parliamentary Election of May 2016. Curiously, Neofytou, current leader of Cyprus' Biggest Party, that or DISY, (who had, apparently, taken the Initiative for that Inter-Party Dialogue), exceptionaly, didn't Wear his Tie, as also his Other Collegue, the Leader of the Small but Growing Party of the "Greens"+"Allied Citizens", Georges Perdikis, ho was standing however, Far Away)....


 - "The New Parliament (2016-2021) will be called to take Crucial and Important Decisions for the Future of our Country", both on the Political, Cyprus' Issue, and on Economic and Social Affairs, stressed, in substance, President Anastasiades, in an Official Written Statement shortly after the Anouncement of the main Results.                               

 

(../..)


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("DraftNews", as already send to "Eurofora's Subsribers/Donors. A more accurate, full Final Version, might be published asap).
 
 
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Former "Green-Red" German government's Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer's job at the controversial Turkish pipeline "Nabucco" was denounced as "not proper", "very bad", and "incompatible with Democracy", by the new President of EU Parliament's EuroLeft Group, German Lothar Bisky, replying to an "EuroFora" question.

For once, criticism of Joschka Fischer's doings with Turkey affecting Europe, didn't come only from the Center-Right of the political spectrum, but even from his Left side : The experienced Bisky, who has been chairing all over 1993-2009 the PDS - Die Linke party :  

- "Former Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer got involved in dealings with oil-gaz business in a foreign country, Turkey, and its controversial Nabucco pipeline. This raises questions about Democracy, also because of the well known problems of Human Rights violations in that country. Do you thing that this might be abused in order to cover up and close EU's eyes on Human Rights violations ?", "EuroFora" asked Bisky.

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- "Nabucco pipeline is (only) at the planning stage". And "there are some difficulties",  he observed from the start. But "'I don't want to get into the details of Nabucco pipeline, because I don't think that there is any point for it at the moment".
 
At any case,  "we  (EU Parliament's EuroLeft Group) strongly believe that Politicians should not get involved in the Energy Business, and all these commercial transactions", President Bisky declared on the Joschka Fiischer's affair.

- "We feel that it's something that shouldn't be done. It's not proper !"           

- "We don't think that it's compatible with Democracy either, and it gets politics into a very Bad track", Bisky went on to denounce.
                                                                                                                                                                        
- "EuroLeft  and "Die Linke" always spoke against that, saying that politicians should not get directly into the arms of private enterprises"

- "It is pretty bad if a former Minister takes a job f.ex. in a major Energy producer. So, it's an issue if a Minister who may have seen excellent opportunities, subsequently gets personally grasp of them, in very serious parts of the economy, once he has given up his (Government) job."

- "It doesn't really make politics in general look any better'", Bisky concluded.

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Earlier, this week in Strasbourg, other Journalists had also raised critical questions on former Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer's involvement in the conroversial Turkish Nabucco pipeline to the President of his own EuroParty : Kohn-Bendit of the "Greens", who, contrary to Bisky, tried to find excuses for Fischer, while criticizing his long-time partner, Schroeder for having done a similar move :

- "Shroeder was chancellor", and he "negociated" with "Russians", who gave him a job only "3 Months" after he resigned from the Government. While "Joschka Fischer", on the contrary, got a job with the controversial Turkish Nabucco pipeline only "4 Years after" he left the Government. "He didn't negociate Nabucco", so I have "no objection", Kohn Bendit claimed.

But, many Facts indicate the contrary :

Joschka Fischer was Foreign Minister in Germany from 1999 up to 2005 : I.e. from the year that EU took the controversial decision to give Turkey a "Candidate" status, until he year it started controversial "accession negotiations, (later declared "open-ended" after Sarkozy-Merkel's arrival from 2005-2007).

During that period was prepared the controversial so-called "Annan" Plan (in fact, drafted by others and attributed afterwards to the former UN SG) on Cyprus, which failed after a Popular Referendum said "No" on 2004 with a large Majoriy of 3/4 : 75%. Mainly because it was criticized for making too much concessions to the Turkish side :  Particularly by restricting Greek Cypriot Refugees' Human Right to return to their ancestral Land and/or get restitution of their Familiy Homes and private properties, usurpated by Ankara's Army since the 1974 militay invasion and continuing occupation of the northern part of Cyprus. And by weakening the Central Government, leaving to 2 "constituent States" so much powers and separate interests that more conflicts appeared inevitable, provoking the danger of a break-down in the foreseable future, with more crisis, troubles, perhaps bloodshed, etc., instead of creating an harmoniously integrated, really one federal State.

The controversial Plan was finalized on March-April 2004 at Burgenstock (Switzerland), curiously in the presence of an Envoy by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Germany, then governed by Joschka Fischer, but in the absence of a French and not even an European Union's Envoy, contrary to what was usually practiced on similar occasions in Switzerland (fex. in 1997 at Montreux, in 2000 at Geneva, etc).

Turkey notoriously exploited the failure of the "Annan" Plan in order to convince the EU to decide to start accession Negotiations on December 2004. This provoked an unprecedented series of Institutional Crisis inside the EU, shortly afterwards, when French and Dutch People rejected, 2 popular EuroReferenda by a majority "'No" vote to the EU Constitutional Treaty on 2005, aggraveted in 2004 a Majority Abstention to EU Elections, etc., followed by the recent Irish "No", etc.

"Nabucco" Gas pipeline was notoriously planned since ..2002. It follows an even earlier idea, for an Oil pipeline Baku-Ceyhun, which started to be prepared on 1999-2001 and was meanwhile recently completed.  

So, facts indicate that what is now at stake is based on decisions made during Joschka Fischer's term as former Foreign Minister, closely interested in Turkey's controversial EU-bid.

To the point that he now practically ...switched jobs with a poliician from Turkey, (the State which pays today openly Joschka Fischer), Mr. Ozdemir, who came earlier in Germany, got fast the nationality, and became EiuroMP in a few years, continuing now as head of the "Greens" in Germany, i.e. in Joschka's former job !...

Such astonishing facts risk, unfotunately, to give to German politician Lothar Bisky's criticism of  representative Democracy a topical meaning :

 - "We (EuroLeft Group) think that what is really at stake is Democracy. It's not only about Gas Pipelines or Energy sources", President Lothar Bisky went on to add in his reply to "EuroFora"'s question on Joscka Fischer's personal interests in the controversial Turkish "Nabuco" pipeline.

Such facts, "make People get more distance from Politics. ...People had had enough, and they are fed up !".

- "That's why we (EuroParliament's "EuroLeft" Group) want to strengthen Direct Democracy in Europe. Citizens should be involved in the (EU) Decision-making. In the end of the day, it's not going to help anyone if Politicians are always taking decisions, without involving Citizens. We want to give a voice to the People of Europe. They've got to have their say in the decisions that are taken. That's one of our absolutely fixed and steadfast views. We want more Direct Democracy in Europe. That's how it can become more effective and stronger", he concluded.

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