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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Press and Other Media, 05-03-15

Cyprus Press and Information Office: Turkish Cypriot Press Review Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Republic of Cyprus Press and Information Office Server at <>

TURKISH PRESS AND OTHER MEDIA No.50/05 12-13-14-15.03.05


  • [01] Gul: "Turkey will sign the Protocol on Ankara Agreement".
  • [02] Gul denies from London that Islamic policies and laws are on his government's agenda.
  • [03] The so-called Republican Assembly ends debate on "Government Program".
  • [04] Number of Turkish Cypriot "Presidential" Candidates rises to nine.
  • [05] Erdogan again attacks the media.
  • [06] Erdogan speaks about ploys against his government.
  • [07] In spite of EU and US reaction preparations for Sezerīs visit to Syria are under way.
  • [08] The Democratic Party expresses the opinion that the negotiator of the Turkish Cypriots must be appointed by the pseudoassembly.
  • [09] A "Eurasia Fair" will be organise in the pseudostate next July.
  • [10] VOLKAN newspaper continues its provocative attitude.
  • [11] American lawer who "bought" stolen Greek Cypriot property in occupied Karmi in 2002 analyses Euproīs plans. She seems to ignore that the issue is usurped property of Europeans.
  • [12] Turkish Cypriots appoint Representative to Los Angeles.

  • [13] Columnist in AKSAM assesses the latest political situation in Turkey.


    [01] Gul: "Turkey will sign the Protocol on Ankara Agreement"

    Istanbul NTV television (14.03.05) broadcast that the Turkish Foreign Minister, Mr Abdullah Gul, held talks with Foreign Secretary Jack Straw. They later replied to journalists' questions. Straw said that they will give every support to Turkey on matters related to the EU. Asked whether he believed the Republic of Cyprus might create a new obstacle on 3 October, he said that preparations will be made for the commencement of talks on Turkey's accession.

    Replying to a question on the adaptation protocol, Foreign Minister Gul said that Turkey will sign the protocol but Brussels must point out the direction to be taken for that purpose. He asserted that the signing of the protocol will not mean Turkey's recognition of the Republic of Cyprus.

    Moreover, Ankara Anatolia news agency (14.03.05) reports from London that Mr Gul, replying to questions of Turkish journalists following his meeting with British Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs Jack Straw, said: "Britain takes into consideration the problems of Turkish Cypriot people. However, the upcoming elections in Britain have made the situation difficult. Turkish Cypriot and Greek Cypriot voters constitute an important group in Britain. Therefore, Britain will wait for the results of the elections to take a concrete step.''

    Upon a question about the policy of the European Union (EU) for Cyprus, Mr Gul told reporters: "The EU could not keep its promises to Turkish Cypriots. However, the problems will be overcome in the end. It is inevitable, because everybody knows who have caused all these problems.''

    Replying to another question about relations between Turkey and the EU, Gul said: "Mr Straw told me that everything was going on the right track."

    [02] Gul denies from London that Islamic policies and laws are on his government's agenda

    Istanbul NTV television (14.03.05) broadcast that Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul, who is holding talks in London, has said that Islamic policies and laws are not on the Turkish Government's agenda. He asserted that they want to solve the problem of headdress in the country.

    Abdullah Gul held talks with the representatives of British investment and financing circles in London. He informed them on the investment opportunities in Turkey and replied to questions.

    Asked to explain how an Islamic political party might contribute towards united Europe, Gul said: "We do not have an agenda that includes Islamic policies and laws".

    Recalling the reforms the Turkish Government has realized in the EU process thus far, Gul said that their objective is to lift Turkey to the level of Europe. Regarding a question on the headdress problem in Turkey, Gul asserted that the issue was an internal matter. He noted: "Our Government defends the view that the people must be free to decide. However, a number of legal problems exist. We want to solve them."

    Gul said that contrary to capitals like Paris and Moscow, a 20 year-old girl cannot attend her school wearing a headdress in Turkey.

    [03] The so-called Republican Assembly ends debate on "Government Program"

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (14.03.05) reports from occupied Lefkosia that the so-called Prime Minister and leader of the Republican Turkish Party [RTP] Mehmet Ali Talat replied to the opposition's criticism in the "Republican Assembly" on the RTP-DP [Democratic Party] so-called coalition's government program.

    Noting that the "government" will be a transitional "administration" that will stay in office until the so-called presidential elections are held on 17 April, Mr Talat noted that a new "government" will be formed after the "president" is elected.

    Mr Talat explained that serious work is carried out for the EU process and said that they will seek an agreement with the political parties on constitutional changes. He urged the political parties to cooperate with the "government" and act with reason.

    Stressing that the Greek Cypriot side has to take a step on the Cyprus problem, Mr Talat asserted that UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan expects it to do so.

    Mr Talat said that Turkey has a very significant say on the Cyprus problem and asserted that they take steps in agreement with the Turkish government. He stressed that Turkey does not take any action on Cyprus before it informs them. Mr Talat said: "The government was almost unaware of the declaration of the policy on the establishment of a confederation in the past. Yes, the government was almost unaware. I am not sure but it might have been informed 24 hours earlier. I do not know whether or not it would have been interested. But, that was the political situation in the past."

    Stressing that the former National Unity Party [NUP] "administration" transferred responsibility on the Cyprus problem and the Turkish Cypriot economy to Turkey, Talat asserted that his "administration" changed that state of affairs. He said that economic dependence significantly decreased and that domestic revenues are now used to meet current spending to a great extent. Mr Talat described that as an important achievement. He said: "This 'government' has been the most successful 'administration' in improving the Turkish Cypriot economy and informing the world on the existence of the Turkish Cypriot people."

    Referring to the "isolation" of the Turkish Cypriot community, Mr Talat asserted that the world is now aware of the existence of the Turkish Cypriots. That, he said, is an achievement. He expressed his conviction that the new "government" will work in harmony with the world and be more successful through its contemporary policies.

    Mr Talat said that the "government" will be a "transitional institution" regardless of being fully equipped and called on the "Republican Assembly" to support the new "administration".

    The so-called deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Serdar Denktas, who is the leader of the DP, said that the two parties decided not to change the "government" after the general "elections" in order to avoid drawing up a lengthy program for the short period between the so-called parliamentary and presidential elections. "That is why a short program has been drawn up," he said.

    Reiterating that their "administration" will remain in office until the "presidential elections" are held on 17 April, Mr Serdar Denktas asserted that the new "government" will be established after the "president" is elected. He noted, "That is why we view the 'government' as a transitional 'administration'."

    Mr Serdar Denktas stressed that the two main tasks of the "transitional administration" will be the endorsement of the budget for 2005 and the realization of "constitutional" changes. He said that the NUP will have a responsibility to fulfil for that purpose.

    The "Republican Assembly" has ended its debate on the "government program". It will convene for a vote of confidence on 16 March. The RTP-DP coalition is not worried about the confidence vote. The RTP has 24 seats, DP 6 seats, NUP 19 seats, and Peace and Democracy Movement 1 seat in the so-called Republican Assembly. Some 26 votes will be enough for a confidence vote.

    [04] Number of Turkish Cypriot "Presidential" Candidates rises to nine

    Ankara Anatolia news agency (11.03.05) reports from occupied Lefkosia that nine candidates applied to the Supreme Election Board (SEP) to run for the so-called presidential elections in the occupied areas of Cyprus on April 17th.

    The candidates for the so-called presidential elections are as follows:

    1- Republican Turkish Party (RTP) leader Mehmet Ali Talat.

    2- National Unity Party (NUP) leader Dervis Eroglu

    3- Democrat Party (DP) Secretary General Mustafa Arabacioglu

    4- Communal Liberation Party (CLP) leader Huseyin Angolemli

    5- New Party (NP) leader Nuri Cevikel

    6- Cyprus Socialist Party (CSP) member Zehra Cengiz

    7- Dr. Zeki Cesiktepeli (independent)

    8- Arif Salih Kirdag (independent)

    9- Ahmet Kaymak (independent)

    [05] Erdogan again attacks the media

    Under the above title and subtitle: "Erdogan has criticised the Turkish media for informing Europe about police breaking up a demonstration by women's groups in Istanbul", NTV television (14.03.05) broadcast that Turkey's Prime Minister has claimed that the country's media was laying traps for his Justice and Development Party (JDP).

    Addressing his party's women's branch congress in Istanbul Sunday, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan said that media was against them for having their interest hose cut by this government.

    "From time to time they write or draw something but do not publish the corrections," he said.

    Last week, the Prime Minister had attacked the media for showing pictures and television footage of Turkish police using violence in breaking up a rally in Istanbul organised by women's groups to mark International Women's Day. He claimed that the media was harming Turkey's image. Police had used batons and tear gas to disperse the rally, and footage showed police kicking protestors in the face while lying on the ground.

    The European Union issued a formal protest about the use of violence and Turkey's Foreign Minister, Abdullah Gul, promised a full inquiry would be held into the incident.

    Erdogan vowed that however hard the media might draw or write against them and the JDP it would not harm his party or the power of the people.

    As the premier was heading to the congress a right wing group, the Ulkucus, staged a protest targeting him. Fourteen protestors were detained and later released.

    [06] Erdogan speaks about ploys against his government

    Turkish daily ZAMAN newspaper (14.03.05) reports that Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, referring to recent domestic political developments and criticism directed to his government said: "Button is being pushed from known places against the government, they want to do something".

    Speaking to Justice and Development Partyīs (JDP) Istanbul District Womenīs Organizationsī First General Congress held at the "Abdi Ipekci Congress Hall", Erdogan invited the JDP organization and the grassroots to close ranks against the attacks directed to the government.

    He said that from time to time articles had appeared in the press against them and when they had sent denials, these papers did not publish them.

    Erdogan urged the party members to work hard and hear the voice of the needy people in the most remote corners of the country.

    Subtitle: Idealist group wants to stone Erdoganīs car

    ZAMAN further reports that when Erdoganīs car arrived at the "Abdi Ipekci Congress Hall" a group of extreme rightist "Idealists" tried to block the way.

    The Idealist, Grey Wolves started shouting: "The one who will sell out Cyprus, we sell him as well. Government be aware, do not exhaust our patience": When police wanted to disperse the protesters some of them tried to stone Erdoganīs car and others tried to kick the car.

    [07] In spite of EU and US reaction preparations for Sezerīs visit to Syria are under way

    Istanbul SABAH newspaper (14.03.05) publishes the following report by Evren Mesci under the title: "A warning about Syria":

    "The United States and the EU, which joined their forces in order to force Syria to withdraw its troops from Lebanon, have sent a message for cancellation of President Ahmet Necdet Sezer's upcoming visit to Syria. Cankaya [President's Office], however, is not inclined to call off the visit.

    The recent assassination of former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri revived the transatlantic alliance, which had been shaken due to the war in Iraq, and led to creation of a joint front against Syria. As the United States and the EU joined their forces in a bid to force Syria to pull its troops out of Lebanon, Turkey, which is a member of the alliance, only followed the developments without taking any action and thus created unforeseen tension. Various EU-member countries, especially France, strongly reacted to Hariri's assassination and lent surprisingly firm support to Washington's policy aimed at ensuring Syria's withdrawal from Lebanon following US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice's European tour last month. This common stance was also reflected by efforts made by the EU and US diplomatic missions in Ankara. A high-level EU official said that the EU and the United States had taken a joint initiative before Syrian President Bashar al-Asad's decision to pull Syrian troops out of Lebanon. But, he noted, Turkey "remained silent."

    Ankara is a question mark

    The same official made the following comments to a Sabah reporter: "Turkey's attitude created question marks. During that process Turkey was advised through diplomatic channels that the UN Security Council's resolutions should be brought to Syria's attention again. Ankara, however, neither took any step in line with that suggestion nor made any statement. Following al-Asad's statement that he had decided to withdraw Syrian troops, the Turkish Foreign Ministry issued a statement reflecting its neutral stance, noting that "it welcomed the decision." In fact, we hoped that Turkey would put pressure on Syria."

    All eyes are on Sezer

    The Foreign Ministry outlined its stance regarding Syria's troop withdrawal from Lebanon in a carefully-worded statement issued on 7 March, which referred to the resolutions adopted by the UN Security Council about the matter and emphasized that Turkey had "close and good relations and a constructive dialogue with both Syria and Lebanon," which, it noted, was beneficial for all the countries in the region. After Ankara was informed about the reactions to its stance through diplomatic channels, Sezer's official visit to Syria, which is expected to take place in April, has become the center of attention. A high-level American official said that their expectation was that the visit would be postponed, but they had received no signal from Cankaya indicating that the visit would be put off. The US official said that they were expecting Turkey's response to the question as to whose side it would take, pointing out that postponement of Sezer's visit would be an "encouraging step" in that context.

    President's Office is not in favor of a postponement

    A source close to President Sezer said that there was no plan to postpone the visit at this phase. He commented: "We are following the developments in the region. Preparations for the President's visit are under way." Sezer had to postpone his official visit to Finland, which was originally scheduled to take place in March, in order to avoid a state banquet because it would also be attended by the Greek Cypriot Administration's ambassador".

    Moreover, Ankara Anatolia news agency (14.03.05) reports from Bursa that US Ambassador in Ankara replied to the questions of reporters during his visit to Bursa Governor Oguz Kagan Koksal.

    When a journalist said, ''according to today's Turkish newspapers, Turkish President Ahmet Necdet Sezer would not postpone his visit to Syria despite the expectations of the United States about such a postponement. What do you think?'' Edelman said: ''The thing that can be said about Syria is that the international community should be in full consensus of opinion under the UN resolution 1559. Under this resolution, Syria should immediately withdraw its soldiers from Lebanon.''

    ''US President George W. Bush, during his visit to Europe, saw that there was consensus of opinion on this issue. During his meetings with French President Jacques Chirac, German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder, and Russian and Egyptian leaders, he saw that they were in consensus of opinion. We hope that Turkey would also take its place in international community. Of course, it is Turkey's own decision whether to comply with international society.''

    Asked how he evaluated the claims that there was anti-US tendency in the Turkish press, Edelman said some of the news reports could be right and some of them could be wrong.

    ''I think this should be mentioned when a news report is wrong. We know that there are several concerns in Turkey as there is US military presence in Iraq. We believe that there should be various discussions and dialogues. However, we also believe that these should have accurate basis. What creates uneasiness for us is that most of the time the news reports are based on conspiracy theories,'' he noted.

    Edelman stressed that a strong Turkey is important for both Europe and the United States, noting that, ''we also wish to have a long term friendship between Turkey and the United States.''

    [08] The Democratic Party expresses the opinion that the negotiator of the Turkish Cypriots must be appointed by the pseudoassembly

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (15.03.05) reports that Serdar Denktas, the chairman of the Democratic Party (DP), has expressed the opinion that the negotiator of the Turkish Cypriot side at the Cyprus talks must be appointed by the so-called assembly of the occupation regime.

    Mr Serdar Denktas and Mr Mustafa Arabacioglu, the candidate of his party for the "presidency" of the occupation regime, visited yesterday the Turkish Cypriot leader, Rauf Denktas.

    In his statements, Mr Serdar Denktas said that the "parliament" must decide who will speak on behalf of the Turkish Cypriots. Referring to the "presidential elections", he noted: "Now the president will be elected, not the leader. The president will be exercising his duties within the authorities and responsibilities that the constitution gives him. The negotiator is a totally different issue. We think that this should be in this manner from the point of view of giving a meaningful message to the world".

    Furthermore, the Turkish Cypriot leader, Rauf Denktas reminded that unsuccessful efforts had been exerted towards reaching a consensus between the right wing parties on the issue of a common candidate in the "elections". Mr Denktas wished success to Mr Arabacioglu.

    Mr Arabacioglu said that they visited the Turkish Cypriot leader in order to get his blessings, as they do before all the "elections".

    Meanwhile, according to the paper, in statements to KIBRIS TV the deputy chairman of the DP, Mr Ertugrul Hasipoglu said that the negotiator will be determined by the "assembly". Noting that before the "presidential elections" some circles are trying to create the climate that the negotiator will be elected in these "elections", Mr Hasipoglu pointed out that the duties of the "president" are defined in the so-called constitution of the regime.

    Asked whether or not there will be a "governmental" crisis in case Mr Talat wins the 17 April "elections", Mr Hasipoglu said: "It might be. Everything is possible". He reminded that as DP they support that the negotiations should be conducted by the "government".

    [09[ A "Eurasia Fair" will be organise in the pseudostate next July

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (12.03.05) reports that a delegation of the Eurasia Industrial and Businessmenīs Association (ASIAD), headed by the chairman of the ASIAD's administrative committee Omer Faruk Basaran, is visiting the pseudostate and is holding various contacts in occupied Cyprus.

    As the paper writes the delegation is having contacts regarding the planning of investments in occupied Cyprus and the organisation of a "Eurasia Fair".

    During a meeting the delegation held with the so-called minister of Tourism Kemal Deniz, Mr Okyay Sadikoglu, the honourable representative of the ASIAD in the pseudostate stated that a "Eurasia Fair" is scheduled to take place in July in occupied Cyprus where firms from the pseudostate, Turkey and other countries will participate and stated that the efforts towards this have started. On his part, Mr Basaran stated that seventeen more countries, besides of the pseudostate are participating in the ASIAD. He also stated that the pseudostate started coming in a position that is attractive for the foreign capital.

    [10] VOLKAN newspaper continues its provocative attitude

    Turkish Cypriot VOLKAN newspaper, mouthpiece of extremist nationalist National People's Movement (NPM), continues its provocative stance aiming at causing trouble between the two communities in Cyprus.

    Under the banner front page title "Greek Cypriot provocation in Lapithos", the paper (15.03.05) argues that the Greek Cypriots have gone beyond the limits.

    VOLKAN refers to a group of six Greek Cypriots, three men and three women from Lapithos, who have reportedly visited their occupied village and went to the working place of Dogan Boransel, who is member of the so-called municipal council of the above-mentioned village. The Greek Cypriots have allegedly threatened Boransel, told him that the houses belong to them and that they would return to their homes asking from him that the houses belonging to them to be evacuated.

    The paper writes that Boransel complained about the incident to the "police" and said that other Greek Cypriots as well threatened Turkish Cypriots in Lapithos in the same manner. Boransel asked the "government" of the regime to take measures against these Greek Cypriots and not to allow them to enter into the occupied areas. Otherwise, some day the patience of some citizens might run out and unwanted incidents might happen, he noted.

    [11] American lawer who "bought" stolen Greek Cypriot property in occupied Karmi in 2002 analyses Euproīs plans. She seems to ignore that the issue is usurped property of Europeans

    Turkish Cypriot "Cyprus Today" (12-18.03.05) reports the following: "One of the things that we are insistent upon is that the Greek Cypriots stop treating this country, the people and the government here as if they donīt exist".

    Shelley White, a US attorney from Houston who moved to Karaman in 2002, is outlining the ethos behind th new European Property Association of Northern Cyprus (Eupro), which has already attracted more than 300 members less than a fortnight after its launch.

    Eupro, a limited company incorporated in England and with offices both in London and North Cyprus, was set up to represent the interests of foreign property owners in the `TRNCī. It aims to counter Greek Cypriot propaganda on the property issue in the North.

    Mrs White explains: "It is very infuriating to pick up a Greek Cypriot newspaper and read `pseudo governmentī and `pseudo ministerī and I guess we are all `pseudo votersī. It is not as if this state exists on a cloud. It is a reality and it is, for lack of a better term, a de facto government. The people obey the government here, the government is functioning, it is in control of the country, and it has a perfectly legitimate right to regulate its own affairs. That includes governing title to its own property. "The English court has been very well aware of that since 1978 because there is case law in England going back to 1978 saying that the Greek Cypriots cannot bring a suit to England over these properties. Now that they (Greek Cypriots) have joined the European Union they are trying to make a back door around that decision. They are saying `wait a minute, we canīt get a British court to do anything about it but what we will do is to get a judgement in the South and then we will try to get the English court to recognize the judgement under the EU Protocol of Recognition of Judgementī.

    "This is propaganda. And what confirms to me that it is a political issue - a true propaganda approach and not a real situation - is that if they bothered to read the EU Protocol of Recognition of Judgement they would know that it states very clearly that it is not applicable to real property because only the locality can deal with real property. "A French court cannot deal with titles to British property. And it is the same here. The protocol is clear on that. It also says that if you are talking about public policy matters, public policy issues, political propaganda is not something which is right for recognition by the judiciary in another country of the EU. And that is what we want to recognise in this situation.

    "They just cannot act with disregard to the law. They (the laws) donīt just exist on the side of the Greek Cypriots".

    The association says it is retaining counsel in the UK to advise it on a number of legal issues relating to the overall property issues in the North, the recent high-profile campaign conducted against foreign property owners in the `TRNCī and the Orams case in particular.

    "We are engaging counsel in the UK to see what we can do about the threat that Mr Candounas has made about taking the Orams decision to England and having it recognised there", said Mrs White.

    "We are also in a bit of a quandary about what he can do with a judgement that, I assume, will come on May 11 in favour of the former Greek Cypriot owner of the Orams property. They have never served David Orams, only Mrs Linda Orams, so how do you execute the judgement to tear down a property when it only deals with 50 per cent of it? What do you do? Tear down the front two rooms and leave the back? It doesnīt even work. It is impractical, which just enforces the fact that the whole case is a political propaganda done deliberately to try to harm the economy in the North".

    It all sounds very simple and logical when Mrs White talks about it, so why did no-one tacke these issues before?

    "I think the government here recognized that it is political propaganda but, until somebody does something, all the government can do is to talk about it. And they really donīt have a voice because the media, in England particularly, are very sympathetic to the Greek Cypriot side. They donīt even call a Turkish Cypirot journalist and ask about their side. You donīt see this side offered that at all, and I think that somebody needed to organise the foreign property owners here so that we could stand up and say `You are going to have to take us on as a groupī.

    "It is too easy to pick us off one at a time, but if we all get together we are much more powerful. One of the realities here is that people tend to be retired, they came for a quite life, they came here because the rustic beauty of the North appealed to them.

    "Getting involved and rocking the boat is not what they want. You have to feel really threatened before you are willing to do that.

    "And fortunately or unfortunately, Mr Candounas has made enough for us. People are now saying `Poor Linda Orams. It might be me next time. I donīt want to wait until they come knocking on my door. I want to do something about it nowī.

    "So it is not that the things havenīt been done properly in the past. I would rather say that the focus hasnīt been there and now it is. And we have Mr Candounas to thank for this".

    [12] Turkish Cypriots appoint Representative to Los Angeles

    Ankara TRT 1 Television (12/03/05) broadcast that the occupation regime appointed a representative to Los Angeles in the United States. With the appointment of a representative to Los Angeles in addition to Washington and New York, the number of "TRNC" representatives in the United States has increased to three. The representative in Los Angeles is Mehmet Mustafaoglu.

    Replying to a question, US State Department spokesman Richard Boucher stressed that a consulate was not opened in Los Angeles, adding that there is no change in the policy regarding the recognition of the "TRNC".


    [13] Columnist in AKSAM assesses the latest political situation in Turkey

    Istanbul Turkiye'de Aksam newspaper (11.03.05) publishes the following commentary by Guler Komurcu under the title: "What is happening to the JDP and a Covert Message":

    "I really wonder how Prime Minister Erdogan starts the day. Which information channels does his thought center draw on? How are his strategic perceptions shaped? Erdogan said, "I have stopped reading newspapers and I am not going to read them again." It seems to me that the Prime Minister does not know that he does not have the luxury not to read newspapers and that he can behave as he likes only when he returns to civilian life and becomes RTE [Recep Tayyip Erdogan]. As long as he occupies the people's - that is, our - office of Prime Minister, he ought to start the day like the leaders of developed countries, in other words by making a situation assessment every morning with all authorized experts from financial, foreign policy, and national security desks, and skimming through the national and foreign press and producing multifaceted ideas. How do you think Erdogan starts the day: by making a situation assessment with his broad team of experts or chatting with his three aces whom he always keeps by his side, namely building contractor Mucahit Aslan, Deputy Omer Celik, and his aide Cuneyd Zapsu, who is a nut trader? Really, who are my Prime Minister's national security advisors and financial mentors, and who are the other people that make up the other half of his brain?

    Those who can produce only one-dimensional ideas do not understand what is happening to the JDP [Justice and Development Party]. Politics in Ankara has started to be reshaped. Not only the domestic reasons detailed above but also external factors are playing a triggering role in what is happening to the JDP. Here is a concrete example. Another very important article against Turkey was published in The Washington Times two days ago. The article by Arnaud de Borchgrave, a "seasoned" international policy columnist, included clues as to what our political future has in store. In The Washington Times, Mr Arnaud de Borchgrave wrote without putting too fine a point on it that the breaking point in US-Turkish relations arrived when Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his Islamist-leaning party came to power. I am quoting him verbatim:

    "No one noticed as Turkey, which used to be considered our ally once, nabbed the gold medal recently in the global anti-American stakes. From left to right, and from centrist to Islamist, everybody is insulting the US with odious comparisons to Nazi Germany. The Turks outvenom bin Ladin. Anti-Americanism is a relatively new phenomenon in Turkey. Throughout the 1990s in Turkey, 60 percent of the people had favorable views about the US and its policies. The Iraq war closed many minds. Yet the mood between the US and Turkey began to really sour with the advent of Erdogan and his Islamist-leaning ruling party. The relations hit rock bottom when the Turkish parliament rejected the US plan to open a northern front against Iraq." Yes, it is this sentence: "The mood between the US and Turkey began to really sour with the advent of Erdogan and his Islamist leaning party."

    What is going to happen in politics?

    As I have been saying for days and weeks, the conclusion I have arrived based on my conversations with those in charge of the Turkey desk in Washington, assessments by various political experts I have met, and recent articles in the US press accusing the ruling JDP of straining Turkish-US relations is that Washington is displeased with Prime Minister Erdogan and the JDP, which is the center of power. This is undeniable. Turkey is a very important country in terms of the United States' plans concerning the Middle East. Washington cannot afford to leave Turkey to take care of itself. US-Turkish relations are at the breaking point. The current approaches fail to solve the crisis. What then?

    Surprise developments in Turkish politics are in the offing in the next three-five months. This is inevitable. New formations, rifts, splits, unions, and cadre changes will take place one after another. I spent Tuesday in Ankara again. I had meetings with interesting names. As I have frequently written during the past months, not only the JDP but also the NAP [Nationalist Action Party] and the TPP [True Path Party], which have turned into one-man parties, will get their fair share of these hot and surprise developments because they are the only parties left that do politics the old way. Also, marginal political parties could come onto the political scene such as neo-Turkish or Kurdish parties. Preparations for such parties have arrived at the last stage. Yet, to say that Washington is the only prime mover behind these developments would be to exaggerate or falsify facts. What is happening in the JDP and Ankara is an operation where there are multi-faceted triggering factors. No, dear reader I cannot write more openly.

    National Ankara and resignations

    Another deputy resigned from the JDP yesterday. Worded with a nationalist sensibility, the resignation letter of Isparta Deputy Mehmet Sait Armagan, who belonged to the nationalist wing of the JDP, is full of very meaningful messages concerning the future. Armagan says:

    "Some of the age-old illnesses of politics have reappeared in the JDP in the form of anti-democratic practices and leader's monopoly. Instead of allowing sensitivities about some of the irresponsible attitude toward our national interests to be expressed from the party rostrum, the JDP leadership ignores these sensitivities and maintains an exclusive approach toward those who express them. The JDP's current method of politics has the danger of putting us in indefensible positions on international problems, proving that the Government is not loyal to the essence of the reforms and not displaying a powerful will to ensure the democratization of politics."

    Sait Armagan, who resigned yesterday, belongs to the "hawkish" team consisting of ten JDP deputies and led by Deputy Speaker of Parliament Sadik Yakut. I am sure you know this hawkish and nationalist team, whose members have displayed a firm attitude against [Leyla] Zana and her friends as well as against the talk in Iraq about a Kurdish state, warned Washington by submitting a National Declaration to it, and are conducting work in line with national sensitivities concerning Cyprus and the EU's latest decisions.

    Meanwhile, talking about Mr Sadik Yakut, I will provide additional information about an important initiative that you heard first from me in my article dated 25 February. I have learned that the National Ankara Institute being set up by Mr Sadik Yakut and a group of deputies and academicians has come to the foundation stage. Yes we will continue to share information concerning National Ankara."


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