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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Press and Other Media, 07-02-22

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 <http://www.pio.gov.cy/>

TURKISH PRESS AND OTHER MEDIA No.37/07 22.02.07

[A] NEWS ITEMS

  • [01] Van der Linden: The Turkish Cypriot side is in a strong position
  • [02] Gul: We knew beforehand that the Greek Cypriots would have rejected the Annan Plan
  • [03] Occupied Trikomo and Rizokarpasso local leaders thank the commander of the occupation forces
  • [04] Environment co-operation signed between Turkey and its subordinate regime in occupied Cyprus
  • [05] Volkan Bozkir: ´Approval of EU trade regulations for KKTC per se not enough´
  • [06] Avci announces that the TRNC will be represented in ten countries until the end of this year
  • [07] Babacan: More tan 20 countries support Turkeys policy on the Cyprus issue
  • [08] UAE Minister is reported to have said that there is no obstacle for developing relations with the TRNC
  • [09] Northern Cyprus to drink Dragon Creek water in 2012
  • [10] Turkey and Iran sign Commercial Accord Protocol. Strategic Energy proposal to Turkey from Iran
  • [11] Turkey in a new offensive in the EU exploiting the Turkish origin holders of high posts
  • [B] Commentaries, Editorials and Analysis

  • [12] Turkeys new foreign policy: If youre not everywhere, youre nowhere

  • [A] NEWS ITEMS

    [01] Van der Linden: The Turkish Cypriot side is in a strong position

    Illegal BAYRAK television (21.02.07) broadcast the following:

    The President of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe - Rene Van der Linden has said that the Turkish Cypriot Side is in a stronger position because of its approval of the Annan Plan.

    The President of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe - Rene Van der Linden who is in Cyprus for contacts with the two sides, was received by President Mehmet Ali Talat today.

    Speaking after the meeting, Mr Van der Linden expressed the Council of Europes disappointment over the failure to achieve progress towards the setting up of technical committees.

    For his part, President Talat underlined the need to give momentum to the 8th of July process but said that the ultimate target should be a comprehensive solution.

    Within the framework of his contacts, the President of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe - Rene Van der Linden today crossed into the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus for a meeting with President Mehmet Ali Talat at the Presidential Palace.

    The meeting between the President and Mr van der Linden started at noon and continued at a working lunch.

    Speaking to reporters at the end of the meeting, Mr Van der Linden said that the aim of his visit is especially to build bridges between the two communities and added that he was very happy to have common meetings with the two sides to show the commitment of the Council of Europe to bring the two sides together.

    Explaining that he had discussed several issues with the President, he expressed disappointment over the failure to establish technical committees and experts working groups in line with the 8th of July decision taken more than half a year ago and underlined the need to give momentum to the 8 July Agreement.

    Mr Van der Linden said he was very happy to see that the opening of the border gates between the two sides is of great importance for the daily lives of the people.

    Referring to South Cyprus EU membership, he said it would be a mistake to suppose that one is a European Union member and is in a strong position because of that, noting that the Turkish Cypriot Side is in a strong position because of its approval of the Annan Plan.

    For his part, President Mehmet Ali Talat said that during the meeting he explained the Turkish Cypriot Sides views regarding the reunification of the island and expressed the Turkish Cypriot peoples decisive commitment towards a comprehensive solution to the Cyprus Problem.

    The President also underlined the need to give momentum to the 8th of July process to reach a stage where it will be possible to start full fledged negotiations aiming a comprehensive solution.

    `We believe that the ultimate target should be a comprehensive solution` he said.

    President Talat said that he also put forward ideas regarding the lifting of the international isolation of the Turkish Cypriot People.

    He stated that the Turkish Cypriot Side will do its best to create a better climate and better relations with the Greek Cypriot Side, but he said that reciprocal action is needed to achieve progress towards a solution.

    The President noted that the Turkish Cypriot People is expecting more interest from the Council of Europe on the Cyprus Issue as a whole and particularly on the lifting of the isolation.

    Within the framework of his discussions on the island, the President of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe came together with political party representatives from the two sides, at a meeting at Ledra Palace in Lefkosia.

    The Ledra Palace meeting was held under the auspices of the Slovak Ambassador Jan Varso.

    At the same venue, Mr. Van der Linden had a joint meeting with the Mayor of Lefkosia - Cemal Bulutoglulari and the mayor of the citys southern sector - Eleni Mavrou.

    Mr. Van der Linden is also to have a joint meeting with the Head of Religious Affairs Department Ahmet Yonluer and Archbishop Chrysostomos.

    The Turkish Cypriot press covers today (22.02.07) the contacts of Mr Rene van der Linden as follows:

    KIBRIS, in its front page under the title Linden: Take brave steps for the solution, reports that the President of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) - Rene van der Linden, who is continuing his contacts in Cyprus within the framework of pursuit of dialogue and reconciliation towards a Cyprus settlement, met with the Turkish Cypriot leader Mehmet Ali Talat. Mr Linden encouraged Mr Talat and the Turkish Cypriots in order to take bold steps towards the solution of the Cyprus problem. Giving also guarantees to Mr Talat that the efforts for reunification of the island will be speeded up, Mr Linden asked from Mr Talat to contribute also to this process. The paper also reports that Mr Linden gave an important message to both sides. He said that it would be a mistake to suppose that one is a European Union member and is in a strong position because of that, and added that the Turkish Cypriot side is in a strong position because of its approval of the Annan Plan.

    On its first page, HALKIN SES0, under the title Look! The success of Europe , publishes a photograph of the President of PACE Mr Linden, the Greek Cypriot Archbishop Chrysostomos II and the Chairman of the Department of the Religious Affairs Ahmet Yonluer. The paper puts the caption under the photo: Linden brought together Yonluer and Chrysostomos.

    HALKIN SES0, under the title A promise of cooperation from Lefkosia s mayors , reports that the President of PACE Mr Linden met also yesterday with the Mayor of the occupied Lefkosia Mr Bulutoglulari and the Mayor of Lefkosia Ms Mavrou. Both Mayors gave a message of cooperation.

    YEN0DÜZEN, in its front page also reports the meeting between Mr van der Linden and Mr Talat, underling Mr Linden s statement: Bold steps for solution .

    AFRIKA, in its front page under the title Open the gate , reports that Mr Linden said: "I have encouraged Talat and the Turkish Cypriots to take bold steps for solution of the problem. The paper also reports that Mr Lindens proposals to the two sides were not announced to the public. It is only reported that Linden was persistent and put pressure on both side on the issue of opening the Ledra Street gate (Lokmaci).

    (DPs)

    [02] Gul: We knew beforehand that the Greek Cypriots would have rejected the Annan Plan

    Turkish daily MILLIYET newspaper (22.02.07) reports that the Turkish Minister of Foreign Affairs and Deputy Prime Minister Abdullah Gul stated that the TRNC (breakaway regime in the occupied areas of the Republic of Cyprus) came to a position that can be accepted before the eyes of the whole world.

    Mr Gul, who was evaluating the foreign and internal policy of Turkey at the Canal 7 in Turkey, clarified that he believes Turkeys policy on Cyprus is right and added that they have started to get positive results on this issue.

    Mr Gul reiterated that Turkey has made no concession at all in Cyprus. Not a soldier was withdrawn, not a square meter was given. On the contrary the TRNC has come to a state of being accepted by the whole world said Mr Gul.

    To a question why they were not able to convince the 1st president of the TRNC Rauf Denktas to accept the Annan Plan, Mr Gul pointed out that there is no peace on the island but a ceasefire, and added that the plan aimed to the unification of the two sections of the island. Gul said that they had sent the necessary messages to Rauf Denktas that he should not have rejected the Annan Plan: Because in any case we knew then that the Greek Cypriot side would have rejected the plan, we had a lot of public surveys on this, he said.

    (CS)

    [03] Occupied Trikomo and Rizokarpasso local leaders thank the commander of the occupation forces

    Illegal BAYRAK television (21.02.07) broadcast the following:

    Mukhdars from 21 villages in Iskele (occupied Trikomo) and Dipkarpaz (occupied Rizokarpasso) have paid a visit to the Commander of the Turkish Peace Forces in Cyprus Lieutenant General Hayri Kivrikoglu to express their gratitude to the Commandership for its contributions to the development of the region.

    Speaking during the visits, the Head of the Society of Mukhdars from the Iskele District Emin Gungor said that the people of Iskele are very pleased with the social activities organized by the Command of the Turkish Peace Forces in Cyprus.

    He stressed that the people and the army should continue to work together to protect the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus.

    For his part, Lieutenant General Kivrikoglu said that it is everyones duty to work on ways of bringing peace and prosperity to the Turkish Cypriot people.

    Mr Kivrikoglu said that not a single Turkish soldier will leave the Republic until a just and comprehensive solution is found to the Cyprus problem.

    In addition, Turkish Cypriot daily AFRIKA newspaper (22.02.07) reports the visit in its front page under the title Kivrikoglu: We are the true owners of Cyprus.

    [04] Environment co-operation signed between Turkey and its subordinate regime in occupied Cyprus

    ANKARA ANATOLIA news agency (21.02.07) reported the following from occupied Kyrenia:

    Turkey and Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) signed a protocol envisaging cooperation in forestry, environment and meteorology on Wednesday.

    Speaking in the signature ceremony, Turkish Environment & Forestry Minister Osman Pepe said that Turkey has a better environmental infrastructure, regulation and practice when compared with some EU member states.

    "However, we know that we have some shortcomings. Turkey has adjusted almost half of its environmental regulation to that of the EU," Pepe stated.

    Pepe noted that Turkey is carrying out joint projects with many countries from the Balkans to the Central Asia, adding, "we will enhance our cooperation with TRNC with this protocol."

    On the other hand, TRNC Environment & Natural Resources Minister Asim Vehbi said, "we have many environmental problems. We always see Turkey's support for solution of these problems."

    [05] Volkan Bozkir: ´Approval of EU trade regulations for KKTC per se not enough´

    Under the above title TODAYS ZAMAN newspaper (22.02.07) reports the following:

    Turkey will not be content with a mere adoption by the European Union of a proposed regulation allowing direct trade with the Turkish Cypriots, said Volkan Bozk1r, the Turkish ambassador to the EU, emphasizing that what it expects was the lifting of isolation faced by Turkish Cyprus.

    In December, the EU agreed to suspend accession negotiations with candidate Turkey on eight of the 35 negotiating chapters to punish Ankara for its refusal to open its ports and airports to traffic from member Greek Cyprus. But the bloc later agreed to begin work on a proposed regulation for direct trade with the Turkish Cypriots, blocked by the Greek Cypriots since its announcement in April 2004.

    The EU Commission announced the direct trade regulation in an attempt to reward the Turkish Cypriots after they voted for a UN plan to reunite the island. The plan collapsed because it was rejected by the Greek Cypriots in a separate vote. Following the EU decision in December to begin work towards adoption of the regulation, the Greek Cypriots are now expected to seek support within the bloc for their efforts to dilute the regulation.

    "We will not look at whether the regulation is approved or not. We will look at whether the adoption of the regulation means removal of the isolation," Bozk1r told a group of Turkish journalists in Brussels.

    According to Bozk1r, while unveiling the direct trade proposal, the EU made a commitment for the lifting of the Turkish Cypriot isolation. The ambassador also underlined that the Turkish Cypriots faced restrictions not only in the economic sphere, stating that any meaningful move towards curbing of the Turkish Cypriot isolation should include measures to remove restrictions in the political, cultural and sports spheres.

    Asked to elaborate on what he meant by the lifting of political isolation, Bozk1r referred to the need for a lasting solution on the island. Sources later elaborated that the Turkish side expected the Turkish Cypriot authorities to be able to have contacts with other countries.

    The decades-old Cyprus problem is threatening prospects for Turkey's accession into the EU, and Ankara says UN-brokered negotiations for a lasting solution should immediately start in the island. Ankara also insists that the EU should not allow the Greek Cypriots to turn the Cyprus problem into an EU issue and says the problem should be settled through a UN-led process.

    Bozk1r reiterated that the Turkish side expected a lasting solution to the Cyprus problem under the United Nations roof and said now that the term of Kofi Annan at the helm of UN had expired, there could be a "Ban-Ki Moon plan," referring to the new secretary-general of the world body.

    'Turkey's credibility improved'

    Commenting on troubles in Turkey's membership bid, Bozk1r said part of the problem stemmed from the internal difficulties faced by the EU. "They are tired, they have a number of problems," he said. "They fail to make a decision even on the proposed constitution. Even the bloc's budget was approved after a year of debates."

    Bozk1r also admitted that the approaching presidential and parliamentary elections in Turkey complicated the EU process but emphasized that things remained on track despite difficulties. The ambassador noted that State Minister Ali Babacan, who is also Turkey's chief negotiator for EU membership talks, broke a unique record by meeting with seven EU commissioners in just two days during a recent visit to Brussels. "Our credibility has improved. Respect for our chief negotiator has increased," Bozk1r said.

    The ambassador also said that Turkey's eventual membership in the EU would benefit the 27-nation bloc and stated that there was a relationship of "mutual interest" between Turkey and the EU. "The EU cannot prosper without Turkey. Neither Turkey nor the EU can underestimate the importance of this relationship," he said. "This relationship cannot be severed."

    Bozk1r also insisted that Turkey had no intention of using its strategic location as a transit hub for energy pipelines going to Europe from Asia as a bargaining chip in its relations with the EU. "We have never raised an issue like that," he said.

    [06] Avci announces that the TRNC will be represented in ten countries until the end of this year

    According to Turkish TV CHANNEL, NTV (21.02.07) the self-styled Foreign Minister in the occupied part of the Republic of Cyprus, Turgay Avci, arrived in Ankara for consultations.

    Answering questions put to him by the NTV, Avci warned that continuation of the Cyprus governments efforts as regards oil and gas explorations in the East Mediterranean sea will harm the good will atmosphere in the region. Avci further said that the self-styled regime will open representations in 10 countries until the end of this year.

    The latest developments regarding Cyprus will be on the table in Ankara, reports the NTV and adds that Turkish Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul and Turgay Avci will meet and they will chart a common strategy.

    The main item on their agenda is the oil and gas exploration efforts of the Cyprus government in the East Mediterranean.

    Claiming that the Cyprus government wants to create crisis between Turkey and the EU, neighbouring countries as well as international companies, Avci said: Such a behaviour, and continuation of it, will harm reconciliation, good will and searching of the comprehensive solution in Cyprus, the Mediterranean and in the wider region.

    Assessing the developments as regards the Direct Trade Regulation which is on the EU agenda Avci said that they will never accept the Greek Cypriot proposal that the Turkish Cypriots should export their production from the ports in the South Cyprus. Avci said: This will never be accepted by our side. We could accept that the ports in the north be within the Direct Trade Regulations.

    Avci further said that Mehmet Ali Talat who will leave for Brussels next week will convey this message as well. He also said that they are working so that occupied Tymbou as well be used when there will be exports.

    [07] Babacan: More tan 20 countries support Turkey´s policy on the Cyprus issue

    Illegal BAYRAK television (21.02.07) broadcast the following:

    Turkeys Chief Negotiator with the European Union, Minister of State Ali Babacan has said that he believes more than 20 countries support Turkeys policy on the Cyprus Problem.

    He said that important steps were being made towards putting into effect the EU Direct Trade Regulation.

    Briefing the Turkish Parliament on the EU Commissions 2007 legislative program, Mr. Babacan said that the progress achieved towards implementing the EU Direct Trade Regulation was a little yet - symbolic move towards removing the international isolation of the Turkish Cypriot people.

    Turkeys Chief Negotiator with the EU added that - for the first time - the European Union was starting work on the regulation with the approval of all 27 member countries including the Greek Cypriot Administration.

    [08] UAE Minister is reported to have said that there is no obstacle for developing relations with the TRNC

    Turkish Cypriot YENI DUZEN newspaper (22.02.07) reports that the Minister of Environment and Water of the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Dr Mohammed Saeed Al Kindi, stated that there is no obstacle for the UAE to develop relations in trade and other issues with North Cyprus.

    The statements of Minister Al Kindi were made during a visit paid to him yesterday by the so-called minister of Agriculture Onder Sennaroglu who is currently in Dubai to attend the Gulfood 2007 Fair and to hold contacts.

    On his part Mr Sennaroglu stated that this is the first time North Cyprus is participating in the Gulfood 2007 Fair and that after this, he will make efforts for the establishment of permanent relations between the two countries. He also added: There is a great demand from the Emirates especially for halloumi.

    During the meeting, Mr Sennaroglu briefed Minister Al Kindi on the TRNC, while present at the meeting were the representative of the illegal regime in Abu Dhabi, Aytug Plumer, the President of the Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Industry Salih Tunar, and the Director of the Turkish Cypriot Dairy Organization, Kemal Ozturk.

    On the same issue, Turkish Cypriot KIBRIS newspaper (22.02.07) writes that at the Gulfood 2007 Fair organized in Dubai, six firms coming from the illegal regime are participating. These firms are the following:

    Akgol Dairy Products, Avunduk Dairy Products, Koop Dairy Products, Kantara Honey and Pastes, Ozlem Dairy Products, and Reha Dairy Products.

    The paper also writes that during the exhibition the President of the Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Industry Salih Tunar and the General Secretary of the Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Industry Mustafa Gunduz held contacts on trade issues.

    Furthermore, Turkish Cypriot VATAN newspaper (22.02.07) writes that more than 1000 firms coming from 300 different countries are participating in the Fair.

    The Gulfood 2007 Fair which started on February the 19th ends today.

    (M/L)

    [09] Northern Cyprus to drink Dragon Creek water in 2012

    Under the above title TURKISH DAILY NEWS (21.02.07) publishes the following by Sevgi Sayar from occupied Lefkosia from a Referans newspaper report:

    In 2008 investments will begin pouring in for the Cyprus Peace Project that began ten years ago with the mission of providing water to northern Cyprus.

    The engineering studies have been finalized for the project, which is expected to be completed in 2012 at a cost of about $300 million. The deceased founder of Alarko Holding, Üzeyir Garih, came up with the idea for this project back in 1995.

    The project will redirect water from Dragon Creek, in the Mediterranean region, to northern Cyprus via pipelines that will run between the Anamur and Karaçam capes.

    Some 75 million cubic meters of water per year are expected to be transported via the project, said Oktay Varl1er, the Alsim Alarko vice chairman of the board. In 2010 we'll begin to transport water and thus organic agriculture can begin on the island. The sale of that water to Greeks may be considered in the future, he said.

    During The Turkish Tourism Investors Association's (TYD) Cyprus trip, Varl1er told members of the press that the cabinet had approved the project in 1998, but it had not been put into action until more recently.

    Subtitle: Two dams for project:

    The underwater pipes will be produced at the Seka factory in Anamur, said Varl1er, adding that a dam will also be founded in Anamur.

    Some 27 kilometers of pipes will be installed from the dam to the sea where there will be a balance tank. Then, through the pipes, the water will be carried to the Güzelyurt (occupied Morfou) district of Cyprus. The water will be distributed to all of northern Cyprus via another dam which will be founded in Geçitköy, (occupied Panagra) he explained.

    The General Directorate of the State Waterworks Authority (DSI) owns the project while Alarko is just the contractor, said Varl1er, adding that the consortium also includes companies based in the United States, Denmark and Norway.

    This will be the first implementation of such a project in the world, said Varl1er. "In the future we may consider transmitting water from the Göksu River to Israel. The same method can even be used to supply water for the Greek islands, he said.

    Cyprus's annual water need is 120 million cubic meters, but only 30 million cubic meters of healthy water are produced, said Varl1er. A cubic meter of the refined water costs 67 cents and because of this project the price will drop to 35 to 40 cents.

    Subtitle: Two projects never finalized:

    Another project had been developed previously to carry water from Manavgat to northern Cyprus with tankers. DSI had built a $150 million facility for the project, but the project was eliminated due to its high cost.

    The Mediterranean Water Distribution Company founded in Turkey by the Norway based Nordic Water Supply had also developed a water transport project in 1997. The project anticipated the transportation of water with giant balloons. Unfortunately, the balloons exploded from the salty water, rendering the project ineffective.

    Subtitle: Tourism investments materialize:

    Tourism investment has increased recently to many parts of the northern third of the island. Alarko Holding will invest nearly $150 million to construct a holiday resort, consisting of private residences and hotels on about 450,000 square meters of land in Karpaz.

    Construction began in five out of 12 locations in Bafta (occupied Vokolida). Holdings such as Mustafa Göçen, Kaya, Limak and Koçoglu began to invest there.

    There is a 14,000 bed capacity on the island, said TYD President Oktay Varl1er, adding that after the completion of the new investments, 7500 more beds will be added.

    [10] Turkey and Iran sign Commercial Accord Protocol. Strategic Energy proposal to Turkey from Iran

    ISTANBUL NTV television (21.02.07) broadcast that Iranian Foreign Minister Manuchehr Mottaki has invited Turkey to explore for petroleum and natural gas in his country.

    If agreement is reached, Turkey will be able to produce and sell the natural gas and petroleum that it will extract in Iran. Iran has also offered support in terms of Turkmen gas being transported through its own territory.

    Iranian Foreign Minister Manuchehr Mottaki, in a meeting he held with Energy Minister Hilmi Guler, made an important proposal to Turkey. He proposed that Turkey explore for petroleum and natural gas in Iran.

    In this way, Turkey, which currently utilizes Iranian natural gas, would open its own natural gas wells in that country, and would be able to meet a portion of its consumption. In fact, even sales abroad might come onto the agenda, depending upon the quantity of the reserves in question. In the same way, Turkey would also be able to explore for petroleum.

    The details will be clarified with Iranian Petroleum Minister [Kazem Vaziri] Hameneh, who will come to Ankara in 15 days.

    Officials of the Energy Ministry, stating that this development would change the energy balances in the region, assert that the international developments that have taken place recently have been influential in Iran's rapprochement with Turkey.

    Iran's support is not limited just to this. Mottaki also proposed the transport of natural gas from Turkmenistan, which has been impossible to bring to Turkey, via a pipeline through Iran.

    In this way, Turkmen gas would come to Turkey along with Iranian gas, and from here could be transported on to Europe. But it is considered certain that this proposal will not be welcomed by the United States, which supports the pipeline project via the Caspian Sea for the Turkmen natural gas.

    Prior to Prime Minister [Recep Tayyip] Erdogan's recent visit to Turkmenistan, a delegation led by US Assistant Secretary of State Dan Sullivan had conveyed suggestions along these lines to the Energy Ministry.

    Moreover, ANKARA ANATOLIA news agency (21.02.07) reported the following from Ankara:

    "We have reached an agreement on establishing a preferred commercial accord between Turkey and Iran," Turkish State Minister Kursad Tuzmen said on Wednesday.

    The Turkey-Iran 19th Term Joint Economic Commission (JEC) protocol was signed in Ankara today.

    "We have talked on eradicating all obstacles before commerce with Iran," noted Tuzmen.

    Tuzmen stressed that "both Turkey and Iran will work in ending problems of the transportation sectors. Delegations from both countries will get together in two weeks to develop energy relations."

    Meanwhile, Iranian Foreign Minister Manuchehr Motaki indicated that commercial issues have a prominent status in Turkey-Iran relations.

    "One million Iranians visit Turkey every year. A great portion of these Iranians utilize planes and some use buses. A new railway between the Van Lake and Iran will contribute to tourism in both countries," added Motaki.

    [11] Turkey in a new offensive in the EU exploiting the Turkish origin holders of high posts

    ISTANBUL SABAH newspaper (18.02.07) publishes the following report by Kani-Top under the title: "Three Controversial Invitations":

    Ankara is preparing for a new offensive with regard to the EU. The EU Contact Group, which reports to Minister of State Ali Babacan, contacted parliamentarians, senators, and ministers of Turkish origin in Europe through the Foreign Ministry and invited them to meetings that will be held on 24 and 25 February. However, three of the invitees have generated major controversy. Feleknas Uca, a member of the European Parliament from [Germany's] Party of [Democratic Socialism]; and Giyasettin Sayan and Evrim Baba, both Party of [Democratic Socialism] deputies in the Berlin Regional Assembly, are reportedly among the invitees. The Foreign Ministry disclosed that Uca, who has reportedly supported various activities by the PKK, has been invited because she is a member of the Contact Group, but that the other two deputies have not been invited.

    Why Opposition to Sayan?

    In the meantime, Evrim Baba, a member of the Berlin Regional Assembly, said: "They invited me verbally and in writing." As is known, Evrim Baba's father, Kazim Baba, earlier appeared in the news as a member of the administrative council of Kongra-Gel [People's Congress of Kurdistan], which was established with the purpose of politicizing the PKK. Evrim Baba's German identity card reportedly cites her birthplace as "Kurdistan." Feleknas Uca, on the other hand, helps to organize activities in the European Parliament for associations with close ties to the PKK. While the reasons for the controversy of the inclusion of Baba and Uca in the list of invitees is understood, it is not known why Ankara is so cool toward Giyasettin Sayan, another deputy of Kurdish ancestry. The Foreign Ministry insists that it has "not invited Sayan." Sayan, on the other hand, insists that, although he could not be reached by e-mail initially, he was invited verbally and that he received a written invitation after he had discussions with Ankara. Reportedly, Sayan might not have been invited because he has acknowledged the so-called Armenian genocide and has issued statements to that effect.

    The invitation sent to the deputies says: "Please let us know whether you will or will not attend the two meetings that will be held in Ankara and Istanbul on 24 and 25 February." It has been learned that the two Turkish ambassadors in Belgium, Fuat Tanla (Belgium) and Volkan Bozkir (EU), called some of the deputies and then issued invitations to them.

    Most Will Attend

    The great majority of the deputies who have won election to the federal and state legislatures of EU countries have accepted the invitation. Turkish-EU relations will be discussed at the meeting to be held in the Foreign Ministry in Ankara on 24 February. The invitees will meet with representatives of NGO's at the meeting in Istanbul on 25 February.

    Numerous deputies who spoke to Sabah said that they will accept the invitation. Cem Ozdemir, a member of the European Parliament from the German Greens Party, said: "I already wrote to them that I accept the invitation. They invited Feleknas to a Justice and Development Party meeting last year, but she could not go. I believe she will not be able to go this year either."


    [B] Commentaries, Editorials and Analysis

    [12] Turkeys new foreign policy: If you´re not everywhere, you´re nowhere

    Under the above title TODAYS ZAMAN newspaper (22.02.07) reports the following by Kerim Balci:

    Ankara is passing through a busy period. The top items on the domestic political agenda are changing positions with a dazzling speed.

    Foreign Minister Abdullah Gül is already the Speedy Gonzalez of world politics. Within the last month, he has been to Albania, France, the US and Saudi Arabia. Next week, he will be in Afghanistan and Pakistan. Simply following his mobility as an analyst is difficult.

    Turkeys foreign policy initiatives are not limited to the activities of Gül. Chief EU negotiator Ali Babacan is quite active on the EU front. The prime minister himself is participating both rhetorically and practically in the foreign policy execution process. And there is the Chief of the General Staff, who not only visits foreign countries, but also uses the opportunity of meaningful distance provided by these trips to criticize, support and lead Turkeys foreign policy.

    Classic Turkish foreign policy was one dimensional. Ankara had a non-proactive, all-cards-in-the-same-deck crisis resolution tactic. Whenever Cyprus was an issue, the Aegean continental shelf would be pushed to the edge of the policy making process. And elections the ballot box were the black hole of Turkish foreign policy.

    Today, the government of Turkey has a multifaceted foreign policy. This is not to glorify the Justice and Development Party (AK Party) government; this is the new face of world politics. In the past, the ruling paradigm of international politics was a bloc-based correspondence. Most of Turkeys foreign policy options were either created or eliminated within the framework of NATO. But today Russian President Vladimir Putin is wrong; the world is no longer uni-polar. It is true that the US is able to impose military occupation on countries, but it is not able to impose foreign policy decisions. Even not on its strategic allies!

    The first fruits of a multifaceted Turkish foreign policy, it seems, will be harvested in the Middle East. Turkey has already convinced the leaders of the Kurdish enclave in northern Iraq -- and that without even directly speaking to any one of them -- that it is better not to speak about an independent Kurdistan. The Greek Cypriots claim for oil exploration in the Mediterranean was repulsed at the same time as Turkey was dealing with the Armenian genocide resolution waiting in the US Congress. In addition, it was dealing with European pressure to amend the so-called Notorious Article 301 of the Turkish Penal Code; it was dealing with the approaching threat of a commencement of Kurdish separatist terrorism and it was dealing with its new role as a mediator in Israeli-Arab relations and, cross your fingers, Ankara hasnt stumbled.

    Turkeys new dynamism in regional and global politics was probably also felt in regional capitals. This explains the recent traffic between Ankara and these capitals. Israels acceptance of a Turkish delegation to inspect the recent excavations in the vicinity of the Aqsa Mosque, or Irans offer to engage in strategic relations including joint oil production and marketing all attest to the truth that this role is welcomed in the region. Now the critical question is whether Turkey will be able to fulfil this role.

    The biggest necessity of a multi-faceted foreign policy is qualified human resources management. In order to knock the doors, one needs only a finger, but once the doors are open there need to be a mouth and a brain working at every door. And these brains need to be interconnected and in a constructive dialogue. The apparent discrepancies between foreign policy discourses of the Prime Minister, President and the Chief of the General Staff not only consist of foreign policy makers, but leverage is also given to foreign diplomats opposed to Ankaras new role

    EG/


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