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Anadolu Agency: News in English, 00-01-22

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

From: The Anadolu Agency Home Page at <>

[01] AA News

22 January 2000 Saturday


[03] These are some of the major headlines and their brief stories in Turkey's press on January 22, 2000. The Anadolu Ajansi does not verify these stories and does not vouch for their occuracy.

[04] HURRIYET (LIBERAL) - ---------------- UGUR DUNDAR AT TOP OF HEZBOLLAH'S LIST Ugur Dundar, a famous television programme maker was at the top of the list of people who would be killed by Hezbollah as it was seen from the video tapes and CDs of Hezbollah seized in its villa in Kavacık, Istanbul. Businessmen, journalists, moderate moslem people and artists were in the death list of Hezbollah. The Hezbollah's order was also to kill Ugur Dundar to celebrate the ''Feast of Sacrifice.''

[05] MILLIYET (LIBERAL) - ----------------- HEZBOLLAH MEMBER WORKING IN PRIME MINISTRY It is determined that a computer operator working in the Prime Ministry office in Ankara was the member of the Hezbollah. Abdussamet Yıldız, the computer operator was captured by Ankara Police Chief who came to the Prime Ministry office while the cabinet meeting was continuing.

[06] KURIS DOUBT IN KONYA One of the dead houses of the terrorist orgnization Hezbollah was found in central Konya province. Four dead bodies including one woman were recovered in the basement of a Hezbollah villa. Police think that the woman body can belong to Konca Kuris, an Islamist feminist writer who was kidnapped in 1998.

[07] SABAH (LIBERAL) - --------------- DEAD MACHINES GROW LIKE THAT The members of the terrorist organization Hezbollah give code names to even their children. They also give the name ''Hezbollah'' to their children. The result:''A child whose name was ''Lazgin Cangir'' became the member of the Hezbollah when he was 13 and then killed 19 persons when he was 15.'' Now his death sentence is wanted.

[08] COALITION TO CONTINUE FOR FOUR YEARS Mesut Yılmaz, the leader of the Motherland Party (ANAP) said that the coalition leaders decided to stay in power for a term of four years and said ''in leaders summit on January 12, we reached an agreement to stay in power for four years and the elections will be held in its regular period.''

[09] CUMHURIYET (LEFT) - ---------------- DANGEROUS THAN PKK Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit said, ''we can't be sure whether terrorist Hezbollah organization has connections with Iran. It is clear that they were impressed by Iran's Humeyni regime. It is known that Iran has the desire to export its regime. However, Iran's Hezbollah and Beirut's Hezbollah are different. When asked what the latest information about the operation against Hezbollah was, Ecevit said, ''this is very brutal. Hezbollah is more dangerous than terrorist PKK. PKK was announcing its activities but Hezbollah carries out activities very secretly.''

[10] PAPANDREOU: ''WE HAVE TO DESTROY TABOOS'' Greek Foreign Minister George Papandreou said most of the problems between Turkey and Greece stemmed from lack of understanding and dialogue. He said they could convey their experience in their EU candidacy process to Turkey.

[11] UNLIMITED ARBITRATION Responding to questions of Parliamentary Justice Commission members concerning the possibility of a failure in putting the backward arbitration into practice completely, it was mentioned that 46 energy projects, 2 mobile phone licences and Public Works and Housing Ministry's 10 build-operate-transfer projects were in the scope of the arbitration.

[12] RADIKAL (LEFT) - ------------- HEZBOLLAH COMMANDER IN PRIME MINISTRY Police who took action by the statements of one of the military responsibles of the organization, captured a Hezbollah militant working in the Prime Ministry. The military responsible of the organization said that ''he is my chief.'' Abdulsamet Yıldız was computer operator in the Prime Ministry office. It was determined that he was transferred to the Prime Ministry from Ministry of Agriculture when Necmettin Erbakan, the former leader of the banned Welfare Party (RP) was the prime minister three years ago.

[13] DEMIREL FORMULA SEEMS DIFFICULT The formula which foresees the election of Suleyman Demirel as the President for the second time is only supported by Democratic Left Party (DSP) and the True Path Party (DYP). The aim of the Motherland Party (ANAP) is not to permit Mr. Demirel be the President for another term.

[14] TURKIYE (RIGHT) - --------------- FOUR MORE DEAD BODIES IN KONYA Police, which continues its operations against terrorist Hezbollah organization, revealed another 'grave house' in central Meram township of Konya province after Istanbul and Ankara. Police recovered four dead bodies including a woman. Police is investigating whether or not that female dead body belongs to Islamist feminist writer Konca Kuris who disappeared 1.5 year ago. Together with the dead bodies recovered in Meram, the number of people killed by Hezbollah terrorists reached 17.

[15] THEY INFILTRATE EVEN INTO PRIME MINISTRY In an operation launched in Ankara, a leading Hezbollah terrorist Abdulsamet Yildiz who is working at the Prime Ministry Administrative and Financial Affairs Department was detained. Questioning Yildiz, police took into custody four other civil servants at the Prime Ministry.

[16] BRAKE TO PUBLIC PRICE INCREASES The government decided to implement a 2.1 percent monthly increase in electricity price. The ''automotic price increase'' will be valid for also oil products. The proportional taxation will be replaced by fixed taxation in calculation of tax on fuel oil.

[17] ZAMAN (CONSERVATIVE) - ------------------ THERE IS QUAKE RISK IN MARMARA The geological discoveries of the MTA Seismic-1 ship dashed the hopes of people. According to the results, there is a great risk of an earthquake in Marmara Sea; there are active faults under the Marmara Sea.

[18] DELAY INTEREST RATE REDUCED The government decreased the delay and postponement interest rates on public credits by 50 percent. In accordance with this decision, the delay interest rate was reduced from 12 percent to 6 percent, and the postponement interest rate was decreased from 8 percent to 4 percent.


[20] ANKARA - The Prime Ministry Crisis Management Center stated as of 18:00 local time on Friday that 894 people were killed while 4,948 others were injured in the wake of the 7.2-magnitude quake which devastated Duzce province on November 12. The Crisis Center said that the death toll rose because the relatives of those who died and were buried just after the quake, has just informed the Registry of Births. A total of 12,939 dwellings and 2,450 business places collapsed or suffered heavy damage in the quake. A total of 51,694 tents have been distributed to quake survivors while erection of 1,237 prefabricated huts were constructed. The Red Crescent and the Turkish Armed Forces have dispatched 198 mobile kitchens, 173 mobile baths, 2 mobile bakeries, 14 laundries, a number of beds, sleeping bags, blankets, duvets, stoves, and foodstuff to the quake-struck area. In the disaster area, 273 doctors, 194 nurses, and 918 health staff are working.


[22] ANKARA - The fundamentalist terrorist Hezbollah organization started to be dissolved by the confessions of Mahmut Demir, the military wing responsible of the organization. The Ankara Police Department have marked significant developments in the operations which were launched against the terrorist Hezbollah organization. The police told A.A correspondent on Friday that Abdulsamet Yildiz who was detained by the confessions of Demir, was a top member of the organization. The illegal organization interrogated the persons whom it abducted and killed, in central Konya province and recorded these interrogations, the police said. The police noted that Yildiz was working as a computer operator at the Prime Ministry. The members of the terrorist Hezbollah organization who are working in the public institutions, will be determined after the computer discs which were seized from Yildiz's office and house are examined; the police stated. The police stressed that Yildiz was confronted with Selman Ipek, the top member of the illegal organization in Ankara, and Doctor Abdurrahman Alpsoy, the political wing responsible of the illegal organization. All these persons are continuously being interrogated by the inteligence officials to find out the other actions of the illegal terrorist organization and the other members, the police emphasized. The police pointed out that operations were launched in various cities, including Konya and Mersin. Demir was shown the photographs of Mehmet Serif Uprak and Bayram Ali Uprak and asked whether or not the bodies which were found in Etimesgut district of Ankara, can be the bodies of these two persons; the police said. The police noted that Demir said that the decomposed bodies were not the bodies of Uprak brothers. The security members continue their operations by thinking that they can find two more bodies by taking into consideration that the Uprak brothers could be killed.


[24] ISTANBUL - George Papandreou, the Greek Foreign Minister, said on Friday that the announcement of Turkey's European Union (EU) candidacy in Helsinki, suggests that different cultures and religions can live together in Europe. Papandreou attended in the reception given in his honour by Bartholomeos I, the Fener Greek Orthodox Patriarch. The partriarchate is a ''symbol'' which shows that the different cultures and religions can live together, Papandreou noted. Drawing the attention to the good relations between Turkey and Greece which are improving day by day, Papandreou stated that he is very pleased that they are among the Moslems and in dialogue and cooperation with the Moslems. Bartholomeos said that Papandreou's visit improves the peace and friendship which occured between the Turkish and Greek nations in the recent months. The Patriarchate has always believed in peace and friendship in the spiritual, religious and cultural mission it carries out for centuries, and tried to improve peace and friendship; Bartholomeos noted. Bartholomeos stated that he and the Partriarchate have been exerting efforts for the establishment of friendship and cooperation between the Turkish and Greek nations for years. As the friendship winds are blowing on both sides of the Aegean, they want to thank, congratulate and support Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit and Greek Prime Minister Costas Simitis; Foreign Minister Ismail Cem and Greek Foreign Minister Papandreou, who were appreciated by the whole world; Bartholomeos added.


[26] KONYA - One of the four dead bodies that were recovered in the basement of an expensive detached house in central Konya province on Friday belongs to Islamist feminist writer Konca Kuris. Speaking to reporters, Mehmet Genc, the brother of Konca Kuris, said, ''unfortunately, we saw that we lost Konca Kuris. We identified the dead body.'' Konca Kuris was abducted by three armed persons on July 17, 1998.


[28] WASHINGTON D.C. - Turkish and Greek assocations in the U.S. said on Saturday that they support the steps taken by Turkey and Greece to improve ther bilateral relations. Tolga Cubukcu, the Chairman of the Assembly of the Turkish-American Associations and Andrew Manatos, the Chairman of Hellene World Council issued a joint statement noting that they are very pleased with the recent developments between the two countries. The statement pointed out that George Papandreou, the Greek Foreign Minister was the first Greek foreign minister who visited Turkey officially since 1962. It reminded that agreements were signed concerning tourism, illegal immigrants, terrorism, money launder, organized crime, protection of investments, protection of environment and double taxation between the two countries during Papandreou's visit. The Turkish and Greek associations also expressed pleasure over the invitation of Greek Premier Costas Simitis to Turkey by Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit. The statement noted that Foreign Minister Ismail Cem will visit Athens next month, adding that ''this and such kind of efforts are very important contributions to peace and security in the East Mediterranean.''


[30] WASHINGTON D.C. - The Association of Turkish Industrialists and Businessmen (TUSIAD) declared 2000 as the ''Year of the U.S.''. TUSIAD's Representative to Washington D.C. Abdullah Akyuz said the TUSIAD declared 2000 as the ''Year of the U.S.'' as a result of the positive economic atmosphere stemmed from the peak reached in Turkey-U.S. relations, the political stability and the Stand-By deal signed between Turkey and the International Monetary Fund (IMF). Speaking to the A.A correspondent, Akyuz said, ''Turkish-American relations are on the peak. We have to make use of the current atmosphere at the utmost. The TUSIAD is planning to intensify its works in the first quarter concerning the relations with the U.S. within the framework of the Turkish-American Council meeting in March in Washington D.C.'' Noting that the U.S. approached Turkey very positively and the American business circles' interest was open to Turkey, Akyuz said the opportunities that would be brought by Turkey's European Union (EU) process should be explained to the American business circles better. Akyuz stated that the international arbitration which eased foreign investment in Turkey, banking reforms, political stability and anti-inflationist laws created a positive atmosphere but foreign entrepreneurs still thought that there was political instability in Turkey, adding the TUSIAD would explain positive developments in Turkey to several circles.


[32] ISTANBUL - Foreign Minister Ismail Cem and Greek Foreign Minister George Papandreou visited on Saturday Sultanahmet Mosque and St. Sophia Museum on Saturday. After staying in Dolmabahce Palace for 1.5 hours, Cem and Papandreou and their wifes proceeded to Sultanahmet Mosque. Papandreou shook the hand of Emrullah Hatipoglu, the chief imam of Sultanahmet Mosque who informed them about the mosque detailly. Later they visited St. Sophia Museum and they got information about the restoration works carried out in the museum. Papandreou made a wish by putting his finger in the wish stone. When reporters asked him what was his wish, he said he wished for ''peace and friendship between the two countries.'' Ada Papandreou, the wife of Greek Foreign Minister said that this is her third visit to Turkey and her last visit was five years ago, adding ''I like Istanbul very much.'' ''What do you feel in St. Sophia,'' asked journalists to her who said ''I can't explain my feelings.'' Upon the questions of Greek journalists who came to Turkey by friendship and peace train, Papandreou said that ''St. Sophia is a very important historical centre. It is a synthesis of cultures of the two countries.''


[34] ADAPAZARI - A coach fell down to the railway due to high speed and icy road in Geyve township of Sakarya on Saturday killing a passenger and injuring 23 others. The ''Ulusoy'' travel company's coach, on its way to Adapazari, slipped, went off the road and fell down to the railway when it took a curve fast. Nina Verlan, 26, a Moldovan woman, was killed and 23 other passengers were injured in the accident. Officials said Nina Verlan had been slightly injured in an another traffic accident occurred 1.5 hours before the accident and got in the coach together with her friend, Stella.


[36] SIIRT - Police detained Saturday a total of 20 people in southeastern Siirt province within the framework of nationwide operations against terrorist Hezbollah organization. Sources said the interrogation of those people continued.


[38] ANKARA - Premier Bulent Ecevit said on Saturday that the terrorist organization Hezbollah could have infiltrated into some other state organizations. Responding to a question, Ecevit said that ''this will come out as the investigation advances.'' Such kind of developments show that secularism is an advantageous implementation in respect of religion, Ecevit said. Regarding the claims saying that Hezbollah could have been permitted in its foundation process by some state organs as it struggled against the terrorist organization PKK, Ecevit said that ''I can't say anything about such claims without having any concrete findings. If such methods were used in the past, it is clear that they were wrong. But no claim was put forward about such kind of practices during the recent years.''


[40] ISTANBUL - The journey of ''Friendship-Peace Train'' between Dedeagac- Istanbul-Dedeagac route which was organized by the cooperation of Turkish- Greek railway administrations left Istanbul on Saturday. The train which arrived in Sirkeci station of Istanbul on Friday with its 85 passangers whose majority was composed of journalists, was seen off today by the Janissary Band. Hasan Mollaogulları, the Director General of Turkish Railways (TCDD) said that they signed three protocols in transportation and railway issues with Greek Railways Administration officials the same day. They would start regular railway journeys as of 28 May between Istanbul- Salonica, he said and added that they will start a tourist tour to Athens on April 17.


[42] ANKARA - Premier Bulent Ecevit said on Saturday that there are ''expectations and hopes'' about the clarification of the murders of Ahmet Tander Kıslalı and Ugur Mumcu. Ecevit said that the making the religion a tool in politics can also target faithful people as it is seen from the murders of the terrorist organization Hezbollah. ''I am sure that new murders and unpleasent things will come out as long as this investigation about the terrorist Hezbollah organization continues,'' said Ecevit. ''We see in Adnan Oktar event how the manipulation of religious beliefs can cause moral depressions. I am not willing to say 'hodja' to this person,'' he added. Responding to questions of journalists, Ecevit said that the Minister of Interior Saadettin Tantan gave information to the cabinet within the framework of the earlier statements issued to the public opinion. When asked whether or not other persons were detained in the Prime Ministry building due to their connections with the Hezbollah, Ecevit said ''No, I don't have such information. But I don't find it appropriate to say things before Ministry of Interior and Directorate General of Security inform public opinion.'' Ecevit said that the investigations about the issue are carried out in a transparent way; but he can't give details. Ecevit stressed that when the intelligence became effective, the infiltration of Hezbollah to the state organs was prevented. Premier Ecevit reminded that he will go to Davos next week on Thursday, adding the concerned units prepared a brochure to attract foreign capital to Turkey. ''53 projects will be presented to foreign capital, these projects are mainly related with infrastructure, energy and defense fields.''


[44] MARDIN - A total of 52 persons were taken into custody within the framework of the operations carried out against the terrorist Hezbollah organization in southeastern Mardin province on Saturday. The interrogation of the captured persons, who are believed to have connections with the terrorist Hezbollah organization, continues.

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