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Anadolu Agency: News in English, 00-01-12

Anadolu Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Anadolu Agency Home Page at <http://www.anadoluajansi.gov.tr/>


[01] AA News

12 January 2000 Wednesday

[02] TURKEY-PRESS SCAN

These are some of the major headlines and their brief stories in Turkey's press on January 12, 2000. The Anadolu Ajansi does not verify these stories and does not vouch for their occuracy.

HURRIYET (LIBERAL)

TREASURY RAISES 1.5 BILLION U.S. DOLLARS
The Treasury raised 1.5 billion U.S. dollars through a 30-year global bond issue on January 10. This 30-year 1.5 billion U.S. dollar bond issue led by Morgan Stanley, Dean Witter and Salomon Smith Barney, has a 11.875 percent coupon payment. Half of these bonds, which were issued through the Global Bond Market, were sold in the U.S. market, and 50 percent in European and world markets. The Treasury Undersecretariat said the bond issue was the greatest amount of foreign borrowing which had the longest maturity. It stressed that the issue was made during a period in which Brazil, one of the important emerging markets, was obliged to postpone long-maturity bond issue.

TEARFUL FAREWELL
An official funeral took place in eastern Elazig province for six security officials who lost their lives in a clash with terrorists.

Major Bulent Yavuz, Captain Ercan Solak, Sergeant Asim Gokmen, Sergeant Abdullah Kose, Sergeant Mustafa Gonen and Sergeant Gokcen Ozkaya died when a group of terrorists opened fire on them on Monday in Havacor hamlet in Yenipinar village in Ovacik county of Tunceli province. Addressing the funeral, General Tuncer Kilinc, the Commander of the Third Army, said that the Turkish Armed Forces' struggle against terrorism would continue till the last terrorist was eradicated.

MILLIYET (LIBERAL)

FINANSBANK TO PURCHASE A BANK IN ROMANIA
The Finansbank will purchase a bank in Romania. Releasing a statement, the Finansbank said that it will purchase 50.07 percent share of the Banca de Credit Industrial si Comercial S.A. based in Bucharest. The Finansbank Executive Board decided to purchase 1.706.566 shares of the Banca de Credit Industrial si Comercial S.A., the statement noted. The statement added that the Finansbank and the Banca de Credit Industrial si Comercial S.A. decided to sign the contracts regarding the transfer of shares in coming days. The Banca de Credit Industrial si Comercial S.A. has a principal money of 73 billion 279 million 998 thousand Romanian Leu.

KORKMAZ TO BE BROUGHT TO TURKEY
Ayvaz Korkmaz, a notorious mafia boss, who was captured in Ukraine, will be brought to Turkey later today. A special team went to Ukraine to bring Korkmaz back to Turkey.

SABAH (LIBERAL)

MIT SUBMITS ITS NEW REPORT TO PRIME MINISTER ECEVIT
The National Intelligence Organization (MIT) submitted its new report to Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit. In the report, it was stressed, ''Abdullah Ocalan is a significant opportunity to eradicate the terrorist organization PKK. We should evaluate this opportunity carefully. Why have Syria, Russia, Greece and Italy protected Ocalan for years? They protected Ocalan to use him. Now, we have this opportunity. We should use it. We should take into consideration the chance to eradicate the terrorist organization.''

CUMHURIYET (LEFT)

INFLUENZA ALARM IN TURKEY
Haluk Tokucoglu, the Health Ministry Undersecretary, said that they have not faced any influenza case in Turkey until today. But, this did not mean that Turkey would not face an influenza outbreak, Tokucoglu added. Other officials said that the influenza vaccines do not kill the new kinds of virus.

FAIR TRAFFIC TO INCREASE
Turkey will participate in 84 fairs abroad this year. Turkey will exhibit many products ranging from clothes to marble, and from food to automotive in many foreign cities, including Moscow, Shangai, Paris and Baghdad.

RADIKAL (LEFT)

LAST MINUTE BRIEFING
Premier Bulent Ecevit received Senkal Atasagun, the National Intelligence Organization (MIT) Undersecretary. Ecevit received information about the latest situation of the terrorist organization PKK and the possible terrorist actions that may be staged if the dossier of Abdullah Ocalan, the head of the terrorist organization, is sent to the parliament for ratification. Atasagun can participate in the leaders' summit.

ALL FUEL OF VOLGANEFT DISCHARGED
Nearly 1,000 tonnes of fuel was discharged from the Russian tanker which ran aground offshore Florya shore of Istanbul and broke into two due to heavy winds. Nezahat Emiroglu, the Director General of Omur Marin Company which discharged the fuel from the tanker, said that all the fuel in the tanker was cleared up as of 09:00 p.m. on Monday. The tanker was pulled offshore Tuzla this morning, Emiroglu noted. Emiroglu stated that the necessary works will be started after the gas-free procedure.

TURKIYE (RIGHT)

FUEL OIL PRICES TO DECREASE
The government decided to reduce the fuel oil prices. The super, unleaded and normal oil prices will be reduced by five percent as of today in accordance with the decision of the government.

PRESIDENT DEMIREL TO BE THE MEDIATOR
President Suleyman Demirel will put an end to the dispute between Georgia and Azerbaijan which occured due to the Baku-Ceyhan Pipeline Project. Demirel will go to Tbilisi on January 14, 2000.

OPERATIONS UNDERWAY IN TUNCELI
The operations continue in eastern Tunceli province. The security forces continue their operation against 50 terrorists who killed two officers and four sergeants in the rural area of Yenipinar village of Ovacik county of Tunceli.

ZAMAN (CONSERVATIVE)

CRITICAL SUMMIT
The leaders of the coalition parties will discuss the execution of the capital punishment upheld for Abdullah Ocalan, the head of the terrorist organization; the term in office of President Suleyman Demirel, and the future of the government. The Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) which insists on the execution of Ocalan's capital punishment, will be persuaded for the opposite by being shown the interests of the state as the reason.

STATE TO TIGHTEN BELTS
The usage of vehicles and the high-ranking offices of the public sectors which are being criticized for years, will be limited. The Finance Ministry is preparing a circular which will end the extravagance in the public institutions. In accordance with this circular, only the ministers and undersecretaries can use the vehicles of the institution they work. Under the circular, the bureaucrats cannot furnish their rooms as they wish.

[03] THE U.S. PBS TELEVISION PROCLAIMS ATATURK AS THE MOST IMPORTANT PERSONALITY OF MILLENNIUM

WASHINGTON D.C., Jan 12 (A.A) - John McLaughlin, the leading U.S. journalist and presenter of the prominent''McLaughlin Show's'' on the PBS Television Channel, proclaimed Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, the founder of the modern Republic of Turkey, as the most important personality of the millennium.

McLaughlin stressed in his television proram that the Ottoman Empire was discarded, and Turkey turned into a modern progressive secular republic which take a constuctive place at the side of other nations under Ataturk's strong guidance.

He emphasized that Ataturk emancipated the Turkish women and granted them the right to vote and be elected.

McLaughlin noted that Ataturk introduced the Western style clothes to the Turkish people, and replaced the Arabic alphabet with the Latin alphabet.

He underlined that Ataturk was the only leader who successfully converted a Muslim country into a parliamentary, democratic, and secular state.

[04] ERCEL, GOVERNOR OF CENTRAL BANK: - ''WE EXPECT 17.7 BILLION U.S. DOLLARS REVENUE FROM PRIVATIZATION IN THREE-YEAR PERIOD''

NEW YORK, Jan 12 (A.A) - Gazi Ercel, the Governor of the Central Bank, said on Wednesday that they expected 17.7 billion U.S. dollars revenue from privatization in three-year period.

Addressing a meeting in New York, Ercel briefed American and Turkish investors and bankers about Turkey's anti-inflation program.

Ercel stressed, ''we will reach our target to decrease inflation to single digit numbers within three years. Then, Turkey will begin to prepare herself for the membership to the European Union (EU) during the forth and fifth years. When the inflation is decreased to single digit numbers, the national income per capita which is currently 3 thousand U.S. dollars, will increase up to 6 thousand U.S. dollars.''

Recalling that the inflation average was 72 percent in Turkey during the last decade, Ercel noted that the imbalance of the tax system caused high inflation rates.

''Overall governments aimed at reducing the inflation during the last three decades. But, the 57th government led by Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit has succeded in taking action for the first time. The government has fully supported the program prepared by the Central Bank,'' Ercel said.

Ercel said that within the framework of the program they prepared, the inflation will decrease to 25 percent in the first year, to 11 percent in the second year, and to 5-7 percent in the third year.

Their target is to remove the public deficit, and they expect 17.7 billion U.S. dollar revenue from privatization in the three-year period; Ercel noted.

Ercel stated that the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank support their program.

Underlining that the reaction of the market is very positive, Ercel stressed that the interest rates which were around 100 percent in October 1998, decreased to 30 percent in recent days.

Ercel emphasized that the Central Bank will not interfere with the interest rates for 18 months and they will wait for the determination of the interests by the markets.

In the end of these 18 months, the Central Bank will start diverting the interests and it will determine the interest rates in proportion to the inflation, Ercel pointed out.

[05] COTTARELLI, CHIEF OF IMF TURKEY DESK: ''IMF OFFICE IN ANKARA CAN ONLY BE OPENED BY THE PERMISSION OF TURKISH AUTHORITIES''

NEW YORK, Jan 12 (A.A) - Carlo Cottarelli, the Chief of the Turkey Desk of the International Monetary Fund (IMF), said on Wednesday that an IMF office in Ankara can only be opened by the permission of the Turkish authorities.

Cottarelli responded to the questions of the journalists regarding the ''office crisis'' following the conference that Gazi Ercel, the Governor of the Central Bank, addressed in New York.

Opening an office is a routine application, Cottarelli noted.

Cottarelli stated that there are IMF offices everywhere in the world, including Russia, Brazil, Indonesia and Taiwan.

These offices are necessary for the monitoring of the implementation of the monetary programs in the countries; Cottarelli stressed.

Cottarelli emphasized that they will reach a decision about the IMF office in Ankara following the talks between the IMF and Turkey.

He is conscious that the office can only be opened by the permission of the Turkish authorities, Cottarelli added.

Cottarelli had earlier said that an IMF office could be opened in Ankara to monitor the monetary program which was being implemented by the Turkish government.

[06] CAVANAUGH, TURKEY ANALYST OF THE STANDARD AND POOR'S: - ''IF TURKEY FULFILS STRUCTURAL REFORMS AND ECONOMIC PROGRAM, WE WILL INCREASE HER RAYTING NOTE''

NEW YORK/ANKARA, Jan 12 (A.A) - Marie Cavanaugh, the Turkey Analyst of the Standard and Poor's, one of the leading rating organizations of the world, said on Wednesday that if Turkey fulfils the structural reforms and the economic program, they will increase her rayting note.

Responding to questions of the A.A correspondent, Cavanaugh noted that positive developments were continuing in the Turkish economy.

Cavanaugh recalled that the government had taken courageous measures, the Stand-by Agreement was signed with the International Monetary Fund, and the Standard and Poor's changed Turkey's credit not from ''stable'' to ''positive''.

Stressing that significant steps were taken to reduce high inflation rates in Turkey, Cavanaugh described raising of 1.5 billion U.S. dollars through a 30-year global bond issue as a good sign for international markets.

Cavanaugh emphasized that if Turkey fulfils the structural reforms and the economic program, they will increase her rayting note.

[07] FAMOUS TENORS TO GIVE CONCERT FOR QUAKE SURVIVORS

ANKARA, Jan 12 (A.A) - Worldwide-famous tenors Placido Domingo, Jose Carreras and Andrea Becelli will give a concert in Turkey for the quake survivors.

Nedim Tanrikulu, the Director of the Presidential Symphony Orchestra (CSO), told A.A correspondent on Wednesday that they had asked the worldwide- famous tenors to give a concert in Turkey for the quake survivors.

The tenors responded their proposal in the affirmative, Tanrikulu said.

Tanrikulu noted that the tenors who each take 200,000 U.S. dollars per concert, made a gesture and said that they would not take any money to give a concert for the quake survivors.

The artists are very sensitive about such disasters, Tanrikulu stated.

Tanrikulu said, ''we had proposed the artists to give a concert in Turkey following the quake disasters. They told us that their schedule was very intense and that they could give a concert for the quake survivors on a date which will be set by themselves. Also, they said that they would meet their expenditures by themselves. Now, we wait for the date the three tenors will announce.''

[08] PRIME MINISTER ECEVIT: - ''TODAY'S LEADERS SUMMIT WILL FOCUS ON RELATION BETWEEN NATIONAL LAW AND SUPRANATIONAL LAW''

ANKARA, Jan 12 (A.A) - Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit said on Wednesday that today's leaders summit would focus on relation between national law and supranational law.

Addressing ''Law Congress 2000'' organized by the Ankara Bar, Ecevit noted, ''fairness of law, independence of jurisdiction, accord between laws and the human rights and homogeneity between national law and supranational law, have been high on agenda of Turkey in recent years. I believe that the Law Congress would propose productive and contrete solutions.''

He stressed, ''leaders of political parties forming the coalition government, will convene later today. The meeting will mainly focus on the relation between the national law and the supranational law. The law also becomes global in today's world, especially in the democratic countries. Having regard to the human rights, the law becomes universal. As our relations with the European Union deepen, we will be more aware of this this fact. The constitutional amendment regarding the international arbitration, is one of the concrete signs of our efforts to adapt with the globalization both in law and economy. Sensitive balance between the globalization and the national sovereignty should be monitored carefully. The 57th government has taken significant steps to remove deficiencies in the fields of the order of law and human rights.''

''I hope today's leaders summit will be a new example of the concordant and compromising attitude of the coalition government,'' Ecevit added.

[09] PRIME MINISTER ECEVIT : ''MANY DARK EVENTS WHICH UPSET SOCIETY'S CONSCIENCE CAN BE ENLIGHTENED IF THERE IS NO DEATH PENATLY''

ANKARA, Jan 12 (A.A) - Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit said on Wednesday that the main problem in the order of law stems from the limitations in the investigation process and one of the reasons of these limitations is the death penalty which has not yet been abolished in Turkey.

''If there was no impediment of the death penalty, many dark events which upset the conscience of the society would be enlightened,'' told Premier Ecevit in ''Law Congress 2000'' organized by the Ankara Bar.

Ecevit stressed that more than 100 laws which had the character of reforms, were prepared and put into force during the period of the 57th government. Giving examples from the laws adopted, Premier Ecevit said that they also plan to bring the new Civil Code draft, Local Administrations Reform Draft and the new Penal Code draft to the agenda this year.

Ecevit noted that they will also adopt changes in the laws that will further broaden the right to freedom of expression, limit the immunities of deputies and change the law on public works regarding the construction of buildings which will be resistant to quakes.

Referring to the death penalty, Premier Ecevit said that ''some of the criminals captured in Europe can't be extradited to Turkey or they are extradited only for the crimes which can't be punished by death sentence. Turkey does not abolish the death sentence on the one hand and does not apply it for 16 years. The files of 57 criminals who were given death sentences were shelved. We must abolish the death sentence and save the system from this contradiction.''

There is no other country in Europe except Turkey which has death penalty, said Ecevit and added that ''another reason of the problem in the investigation process is the contradiction or ambiguity between the security officials and prosecutors which stems from the practice in a great extent. In that regard, I consider important the discusion of cross examination and judiciary police solutions. Another problem in our legal order is the imbalance among the punishments.''

Ecevit stressed that those who are convicted due to terrorist crimes can transform the prisons into terrorist training centers. ''This is a shame on our state, it is clear that unless the order is provided in prisons, the order in the country can't be installed completely. Ecevit said that the room system will be adopted in prisons and ward system will be given up.''

Ecevit added that another reason of the problems in prisons is the fact that there is no functional cooperation between the state institutions. This problem was discussed by a meeting held in the Prime Ministry and the result of that was seen when the uprisings were controlled in a short period of time in Metris and Bandýrma prisons recently.

[10] GREEK FM PAPANDREOU TO DECORATE TWO GREEK MEDIA MEMBERS FOR TURKISH RTGD'S INTERNATIONAL AWARD

ANKARA, Jan 12 (A.A) - George Papandreou, the Greek Foreign Minister, will decorate two Greek media members for the ''International Peace and Friendship Award'' of the Turkish Radio and Television Journalists' Association (RTGD).

Kenan Macit, the Chairman of RTGD, said on Wednesday that Annie Padimata, the journalist-writer of Greek To Vima newspaper, and Nikos Evangelatos, the presenter of a programme on Greek Alpha TV, deserved the award.

Podimata will be decorated with this award due to her serious and calm style, and her comments based on international principles, and Evangelatos will be rewarded since he improved the solidarity of two nations in the disasters by the live broadcasts he made from Turkey following the Marmara quake, Macit noted.

Macit added that Papandreou, who will pay an official visit to Turkey, will decorate the journalists for the award on January 20, 2000.

[11] PRESIDENT DEMIREL: ''THE STATE REQUIRES IMPORTANT REFORM WHILE WELCOMING 2000S''

ANKARA, Jan 12 (A.A) - President Suleyman Demirel said on Wednesday that the state felt the need for a reform while welcoming the 2000s.

''Everybody accepts that the state requires a complete revision. Within the scope of this requirement, the problems of agriculture must be considered in macro plan,'' he said.

Addressing a panel on ''Who is the Owner of Agriculture?'' organized by the Turkish Agriculture Engineers' Union at the Hilton Hotel in Ankara, President Demirel said every country suffered from complicated problems for which the solution took time, adding that Turkey had several complicated problems.

Noting that those problems became more complicated when they were tried to be solved at the same time, Demirel said the problems would be easily solved in a specific time frame with certain reasonable plans.

Demirel said time brought new dimensions while countries were trying to solve the problems, and the new dimensions changed the reasons, targets and methods.

''These should be taken into consideration. Actually, this issue is not the problem of only agriculture. We are obliged to find the answer of this question while we are seeking for the owner of agriculture. Many state organizations' dealing with the issue of agriculture, makes the issue more complicated,'' he said.

Demirel added, ''it is not easy to separate agriculture from the state and make an agricultural reform as agriculture has connections with some other issues.''

[12] DENKTAS:''TUESDAY'S INCIDENT DISPLAYS ONE MORE TIME WITH WHOM WE ARE TRYING TO MAKE AN AGREEMENT''

LEFKOSA, Jan 12 (A.A) - Rauf Denktas, the President of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) said on Wednesday that the incident that occured during Tuesday's press briefing ''displayed one more time with whom they are trying to make an agreement.''

During Papandreu's press briefing on Tuesday, the Greek Cypriot side wanted to remove the BRT logo of TRNC's official broadcasting organ claiming that ''it symbolized an illegal state''. Reacting against the incident, Turkish reporters had left the meeting.

Denktas, when he received Edward Clay, the British Higher Commissioner, told Clay that ''those who don't know or misinterprete the Cyprus problem must reconsider the issue'' by taking Tuesday's incident into account.

Denktas noted that they were trying to make an agreement with people who ''even cannot tolerate the logo of BRT.'' ''We are working to make a sustainable agreement because we know the Greek side would not quit this mentality,'' he added.

Therefore, they want the negotiations take place ''between two states'' and this latest incident showed that they were right to insist on this point, Denktas explained.

Denktas also thanked Turkish reporters who showed their reaction by quiting the meeting.

[13] LEADERS' SUMMIT STARTS - COALITION LEADERS TO DETERMINE THEIR POSITION ABOUT ECHR'S REQUEST TO POSTPONE EXECUTION OF OCALAN

ANKARA, Jan 12 (A.A) - The leaders of the coalition government partners convened on Wednesday to determine the government's position about the procedure for the head terrorist Abdullah Ocalan's dossier in accordance with a request of the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) to postpone his execution.

Head terrorist Ocalan was sentenced to death but the ECHR took precautionary decision to postpone his execution.

State Minister and Deputy Prime Minister Husamettin Ozkan, Energy and Natural Resources Minister and Deputy Prime Minister Cumhur Ersumer, State Minister for Human Rights Mehmet Ali Irtemcelik, Justice Minister Hikmet Sami Turk, Foreign Minister Ismail Cem and Industry and Trade Minister Ahmet Kenan Tanrikulu are also attending the summit of Bulent Ecevit of the Democratic Left Party (DSP), Devlet Bahceli of the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) and Mesut Yilmaz of the Motherland Party (ANAP).

The government's attitude towards the ECHR's decision will be determined at the meeting which is called ''critical summit'' by the public opinion.

Leaders will discuss where the dossier will be kept during the postponement process.

The dossier was sent to the Prime Ministry for its transfer to the Parliament by the Justice Ministry as the internal remedies were exhausted.

Leaders are also expected to exchange opinion on the election of the President.

Following his last regular meeting with President Suleyman Demirel, Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit had said that he would launch initiative for an amendment to the Constitution allowing the extension of term in office of Demirel by another term.

At the end of the meeting, a statement is expected to be issued.

[14] PURCHASE OF IRANIAN GAS POSTPONED TO SEPTEMBER, 2001

TEHRAN, Jan 12 (A.A) - Gokhan Yardim, the General Director of Pipeline Oil Transportation Inc (BOTAS) said on Wednesday that he expected Turkey to start purchasing gas from Iran in September of 2001.

Mohammed Nejad, Iranian Oil Minister's assistant who is in charge of gas, said Iran accepted Turkey's request to delay gas purchase to September, 2001 which was earlier scheduled as the beginning of 2000.

Gokhan Yardim who is continuing his contacts in Tehran spoke to the press following a meeting with Iranian Oil Minister Bijen Namdar Zengene on Wednesday morning.

Yardim said he was visiting Tehran to speak to the authorities about their plans to use the Iranian gas first in small cities like Dogubeyazit and Erzurum. He added that he expected that Turkey would start purchasing gas from Iran in September of 2001. Both countries carry good intentions regarding the implementation of the gas project, he stressed.

Yardim said, during his meeting with Zengene, they examined the agreement on Iranian gas export to Turkey and discussed future activities. The agreement will be valid for 25 years, therefore the sides considered Turkish-Iranian relations in the next 25 years.

The delay that occured in the Turkish side of the project was caused by financial difficulties rooted from the global economic crisis, Yardim explained. The pipeline in the Turkish side is 200 kilometers long and talks aimed to find financing for the project have been finalized, he also noted.

Nejad stated that Iran accepted Turkey's request to delay the gas purchase. ''According to Turkey-Iran gas export agreement, the sides committed themselves to start selling and buying gas by the beginning of 2000. However although Iran is ready, Turkey does not have the necessary preparations to purchase gas at the moment,'' Nejad said.

He also touched the financial loss Iran will suffer from the delay. ''Getting compansation for our financial loss was the main subject of our talks. During the meetings we held with the Turkish delegation, we reached an agreement that, until we start selling gas to Turkey, Turkey will pay compensation for our 200 million U.S. dollar investment which will stay idle during this time,'' he explained.

Nejad also noted that they were working on the proposals of the Turkish delegation on the matter.

[15] DEADLINE FOR TWO BANKS IN TRNC TO CORRECT THEIR FINANCIAL SITUATIONS EXTENDED

LEFKOSA, Jan 12 (A.A) - The Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) Government revised on Wednesday the deadline for the Kibris Yurtbank and Everestbank to correct their financial situations as February 11, 2000.

The TRNC Council of Ministers convened under the chairmanship of TRNC Prime Minister Dervis Eroglu to review the latest situation of these banks and to discuss routine issues.

Speaking to reporters following the meeting, TRNC Public Works and Housing Minister Salih Miroglu said the period given to Kibris Yurtbank and Everestbank was extended to February 11 but those banks could start their activities earlier if they could correct their financial situations.

Meanwhile, TRNC Prime Minister Dervis Eroglu said that the bank crisis put the TRNC Government into a serious trouble but the crisis was overcome as a result of measures taken by the government.

The activities of these banks were suspended by the TRNC Government as they were suffering from financial problems.

[16] ECONOMIC COORDINATION COUNCIL CONVENES

ANKARA, Jan 12 (A.A) - State Minister Abdulhaluk Cay said on Wednesday that the State Ministry would follow a policy which focused on entrance of especially medium scale companies into the Turkish Republics markets.

The Economic Coordination Council convened the same day under the chairmanship of State Minister Abdulhaluk Cay.

High-level officials at the Industry and Trade, Transportation and Communication, and Energy and Natural Resources Ministries, State Planning Organization, Treasury and Foreign Trade Undersecretariats, Eximbank, Foreign Economic Relations Committee, Turkish Union of Chambers and Commodity Exchanges, and concerned organizations attended the meeting.

The commercial and economic activities directed at the Turkish Republics were evaluated at the meeting.

Addressing the meeting, Cay said the Council convened for the first time since 1997, recalling that the Turkish Republics Sectoral Analyze Works and Turkish Republics Businessmen's Congress were held within the scope of the two meetings of the Council in 1997.

Noting that they would continue the works and projects started earlier, Cay said they were planning to continue the industrial cooperation agreement with the Turkish Republics after rationalizing the agreement.

Cay said they would also focus on the trade and financing issues within the scope of the 2000 year programme, and on the ''International Marketing and Export Development'' project.

[17] INTENSE PROCESS FOLLOWING RECOGNITION OF TURKEY'S EU CANDIDACY

ANKARA, Jan 12 (A.A) - A tough and tiring period started for Turkey after the declaration of Turkey as the EU candidate country at Helsinki summit.

The forms of activities which are foreseen to be carried out in this period have been separated into three categories namely accession partnership, the national program to adapt to the EU law and the scanning period.

The accession strategy is prepared for each candidate separately and it foresees the time-limits for reaching the goals stated to prepare the country for full membership.

The accession partnership, which is formed after the meetings held with the candidate country and which also includes the financial support the EU will give, is the basic strategy document and it is approved by the EU Council after being prepared by the Commission.

The accession partnership puts forward short, medium and long term targets and its covers the period till the country's being a full member of the EU. It can be reviewed together with EU authorities. While the Commission writes the report, it takes into consideration the adaptation degree of the Copenhagen criteria by the candidate country.

Another study that has to be carr law. This document has the character of a written undertaking that shows in details how and when a candidate country can fulfil the Copenhagen criteria and the EU laws.

The document will be prepared by the contribution of the ministries and institutions related to ministries which are concerned in the 31 fields of the Community law.

The third category which is called as the scanning period covers a study which aims at determining the problems that can come out during the accession process.

The Commission will make a detailed presentation about the 31 fields of the EU law before the meetings held with the candidate country and it asks detailed questions to the candidate countries about the adaptation of the EU laws by them.

Later the Commission will submit a potential report to the EU member countries about the problems that can erupt in candidate countries.

The report will help the member countries which will give a decision unanimously about starting negotiations with the candidate country.

In this framework, Turkey started the political consultation process as being the EU candidate country. Today a meeting was held in Brussels about this issue and such kind of meetings will frequently be held starting from next month.

[18] TRNC FOREIGN AND DEFENSE MINISTER ERTUGRULOGLU: ''TUESDAY'S INCIDENT DISPLAYS GREEK CYPRIOT MENTALITY''

LEFKOSA, Jan 12 (A.A) - Regarding Tuesday's incident, Tahsin Ertugruloglu, the Foreign and Defense Miniser of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) said on Wednesday that ''the incident was a good example displaying the Greek Cypriot mentality.''

During Papandreu's press briefing on Tuesday, the Greek Cypriot side wanted to remove the BRT logo of TRNC's official broadcasting organ claiming that ''it symbolized an illegal state''. Reacting against the incident, Turkish reporters had left the meeting.

''How are we going to make an agreement that depends on two separate sovereignties and two separate states with Greek Cypriots who can't even tolerate the BRT logo of TRNC's official television channel,'' Ertugruloglu said.

Despite all negative developments, he noted, efforts will continue to bring sustainable peace to the island.

Ertugruloglu also stressed that they would not show the same misbehaviour to Greek Cypriot reporters who come to TRNC. ''We'll never put ourselves in the same degrading position with them,'' he said.

BRT Acting Chairman Huseyin Cobanoglu said BRT was the voice of TRNC. ''BRT is a fact like TRNC whether Greeks and Greek Cypriots accept it or not,'' he said.

Cobanoglu reminded that BRT was founded 36 years ago when Greeks and Greek Cypriots started attacks against the Turkish Cypriots to destroy them completely. BRT is still the defender of the rights of the Turkish Cypriots, he said.

He noted that they used BRT logo many times in the Greek side of the island and faced no opposition from the Greek Cypriots. ''This sudden reaction is caused by their feeling uncomfortable about the recent developments,'' he commented.

[19] GROSSMAN, THE U.S. ASSISTANT SECRETARY OF STATE: ''CAPITAL PUNISHMENT DECISION OF OCALAN IS A MATTER FOR TURKEY TO DECIDE''

WASHINGTON, Jan 12 (A.A) - Marc Grossman, the U.S. Assistant Secretary of State, said on Wednesday that carrying out capital punishment decision against Abdullah Ocalan, the head of the terrorist organization, is a matter for Turkey to decide.

Addressing a news conference which he staged on the U.S.-EU relations, Grossman said Turkey has to make its own decision regarding Ocalan question.

Grossman went on as saying, ''there are several commitments and steps which Turkey accepted voluntarily. So, I think Turkish government will consider these issues while taking the decision.''

[20] PAPANDREOU, GREEK FOREIGN MINISTER: ''TURKEY'S EU FORMAL CANDIDACY STATUS FORMS A NEW DYNAMISM''

LEFKOSA, Jan 12 (A.A) - George Papandreou, Greek Foreign Minister, said on Wednesday that Turkey's formal candidacy status to the European Union (EU) formed a new dynamism, adding that nevertheless this gave new responsibilities to Turkey.

Speaking during his contacts in Greek Cypriot side, Papandreou said it was a positive development that Turkish government officals abided by EU regulations, and improved towards membership, and noted that, ''every thing beyond this will be solved in practice.''

When asked, ''Rauf Denktas, President of Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) has been invited to Germany, is this a development regarding a separate meeting with the EU,'' Papandreou said position of the EU to Turkish Cypriot side has been adopted for long time.

Recalling the proposal of Glafcos Clerides, Greek Cypriot leader, regarding participation of Turkish Cypriots to full membership negotiations, Papandreou said they will be pleased to support the opening of an unofficial EU office with the participation of Turkish and Greek Cypriots. Papandreou said this office should be in a position to take special decisions.''

Pointing out that he talked to the representatives of Greek Cypriot youth organizations, Papandreou claimed that young people supported rapproachment, and noted that young people will be promoted for efforts towards the EU.

Papandreou also stressed that the EU and EU Commission strongly supported ''intercommunal'' rapproachment efforts.

Hrisostomos, Greek Cypriot Archbishop, reiterated that he was against a federal and confederal solution. Hrisostomos, who spoke after meeting with Papandreou, claimed that such solutions will cause Greek Cypriots to leave Cyprus.

[21] ''LAW CONGRESS 2000'' - PEUKERT, ECHR SECRETARY-GENERAL: ''IF ECHR REJECTS OCALAN'S APPEAL, TURKEY MAY EXECUTE CAPITAL PUNISHMENT''

ANKARA, Jan 12 (A.A) - Wolfgang Peukert, the Secretary General of the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR), said on Wednesday that Turkey may execute capital punishment if ECHR rejects the appeal of Abdullah Ocalan, the head of the terrorist organization.

Addressing ''Law Congress 2000'' meeting, Peukert recalled that lawyers of Ocalan applied to ECHR on charges that Turkey violated ''principle of fair trial'' of European Convention on Human Rights.

Peukert said if ECHR decides that Turkey did not violate the convention after examining it, Turkey will have the right to execute the capital punishment. Peukert said, ''because European Convention on Human Rights does not ban capital punishment. Abolishment of this punishment was only envisaged on no:6 protocol. Turkey has not signed this protocol.''

Peukert pointed out that ''yet, even the appeal of Ocalan is rejected, Turkey has to consider international reactions regarding the execution of capital punishment.''

Peukert said Turkey will not be able to execute capital punishment against Ocalan if ECHR accepts the appeal of the lawyers of Ocalan and decides that ''the trial was not fair.''

Peukert recalled an appeal that was made by Spain earlier. Noting that ECHR decided that trial of a person, who had been sentenced to capital punishment, was not fair, he said Spanish Constitutional Court decided to try this person again in accordance with this decision of ECHR.

Peukert defended that Turkey has to try Ocalan, the head of the terrorist organization, again in case ECHR accepts appeal of Ocalan.

[22] LEADERS' SUMMIT ENDS - GOVERNMENT DECIDES TO PUT OCALAN FILE ON HOLD IN PRIME MINISTRY

ANKARA, Jan 12 (A.A) - Leaders of the coalition partner parties Wednesday decided to abide by the precautionary measure decision of European Court of Human Rights (ECHR), and also decided that if the terrorist organization and its supporters attempt to use this process against the high interests of the state, then the process of delaying will be halted and the process of execution will be started immediately.

Leaders of the parties which form the coalition government held a meeting in Prime Ministry building which lasted for 7.5 hours.

The meeting ended at 19:15 local time, and the leaders later discussed the statement which will be issued publicly by Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit.

In a later statement Prime Minister Ecevit said, ''leaders of DSP, MHP, and ANAP, which form the coalition government, held a meeting and evaluated the details of precautionary measure decision of the ECHR regarding delaying of execution of the capital punishment upheld on Abdullah Ocalan, the head of the terrorist organization.''

He said, ''as it is known, it is out of question for ECHR to change the decisions taken by justice of Turkey which accepted ECHR's judicial authority. The file will immediately be sent to the Parliament for the required procedure when the process stemming from our Constitution and international commitments ends.''

Ecevit said leaders decided that if the terrorist organization and its supporters attempt to use this process against the high interests of the state, then the process of delaying will be halted and the process of execution will be started immediately.

[23] LEADERS' SUMMIT ENDS - PRIME MINISTER ECEVIT: ''OUR DECISION DOES NOT MEAN THAT WE WILL AGREE FOR A DELAY UNDER ANY CONDITION THAT WILL LAST FOREVER''

ANKARA, Jan 12 (A.A) - Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit said on Wednesday that the decision of the government to put the file against Abdullah Ocalan, the head of the terrorist organization, on hold in Prime Ministry does not mean that they would agree for a delay under any condition that will last forever.

Ecevit responded to the questions of journalists after his statement.

When asked if his statements meant that file against Ocalan will be hold in Prime Ministry, Ecevit said, ''yes. But Turkey has its own benefits and interests. If this delaying process is exploited that can give harm to Turkey, then we will not wait for this process to expire.''

When asked under which conditions the file will be sent to the Parliament, Ecevit said, ''if this process of delaying is used against the high interests of the nation and state, the leaders will together evaluate the decision.''

Responding to a question if the other leaders gave him authorization on the issue, Ecevit said, ''no, we have taken a joint decision on behalf of our government.''

When asked why the meeting lasted so long, Ecevit said, ''our meetings always last long. We examine every issue in detail.''

Responding to a question if extension of President Suleyman Demirel's term in office was brought to the agenda, Ecevit said it has not been mentioned.

When a journalist asked to Devlet Bahceli, leader of the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) if he changed his position, Bahceli said Prime Minister Ecevit made a statement, adding that it will not be right if he makes a statement.

[24] U.S. ANNOUNCES THAT IT HAS DISCUSSED WATER ISSUE WITH TURKEY

WASHINGTON, Jan 12 (A.A) - James Rubin, the U.S. State Department Spokesman, said on Wednesday that water issue which was discussed during Israeli- Syrian peace talks did not only interest these two countries, but the whole region. He said they were in contact with Turkey on this issue.

Addressing a news conference Rubin said the result that will be obtained at the end of Israeli-Syrian talks may have ''regional dimensions.''

The U.S. for the first time officially announced that water issue, which has been discussed within the framework of Israel-Syria peace talks, has also been discussed with Turkey.

Rubin said they were in regular contact with Turkish government on issues which mutually interest the two countries. He said water issue is obviously one of these issues. Water problem is an important issue that is under discussion, and it does not only interest Israel and Syria. It has a regional dimension in which Turkey is included. Rubin said any solution that will be reached may have regional dimensions.

Rubin said Turkish government was briefed in general regarding last tour of Israeli-Syrian talks. He said, ''we want to be in contact with Turkey, a NATO ally and a close friend, to discuss these developments.''

A.A


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