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Anadolu Agency: News in English, 00-05-28

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

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

28 May 2000 Sunday


CONTENTS

  • [01] TURKEY-PRESS SCAN
  • [02] FLOOD DISASTER IN SAMSUN AND TOKAT
  • [03] TURKEY-WORLD BANK (1)
  • [04] TURKEY-WORLD BANK (2)
  • [05] TURKEY WORLD BANK (3)
  • [06] TURKEY-WORLD BANK (4)
  • [07] PRESIDENT SEZER RECEIVES WOLFENSOHN
  • [08] WORLD BANK PRESIDENT WOLFENSOHN DEPARTS FROM TURKEY
  • [09] CUBAN AGRICULTURE MINISTER DEPARTS FROM TURKEY
  • [10] EARTHQUAKES SHAKE KUTAHYA, AYDIN, MARMARA SEA
  • [11] FOREIGN MINISTER CEM LEAVES FOR BAKU


  • [01] TURKEY-PRESS SCAN

    These are some of the major headlines and their brief stories in Turkey's press on May 28 2000. The Anadolu Ajansi does not verify these stories and does not vouch for their accuracy.

    HURRIYET (LIBERAL)

    GREAT WIFE OF SWEDISH AMBASSADOR
    The Greek Cypriot side's representative criticized Turkey to the Turkish wife of Swedish Ambassador to the U.S. in British Ambassador's Residence in Washington D.C. The response of Nil Liljegren to the Greek Cypriot representative has been tough. She said ''Don't go too far please. We can get the southern part of the island and you can be left with nothing.''

    SEZER:TIME HAS COME TO ACCOUNT FOR THINGS
    President Ahmet Necdet Sezer who received World Bank President James Wolfensohn said that Turkey prepares for full membership to the European Union (EU). ''Firstly our legal system will be made concordant with the European Union (EU) laws,'' said Sezer. Sezer stressed that he will focus on ''transparency, struggle with corruption and the responsibility to account for the things'' in the coming period.

    MILLIYET (LIBERAL)

    CIVILIAN INVITATION FROM SOLDIER:
    ''EMBRACE SOUTHEAST''
    General Aytac Yalman, the Commander of Second Army, made a call to the non-governmental organizations through the press organs. Yalman requested the non-governmental organizations, including the educational and health organizations, and funds to launch initiatives in the Southeastern Anatolia Region.

    ''YOUR SUCCESS WILL BRING FOREIGNERS''
    The agreement on the 759.6 million U.S. dollar Economic Reform Loan (ERL) which will be granted to Turkey by the World Bank, was signed yesterday. Recep Onal, the State Minister, said that this loan is the indicator of the confidence in the government. James Wolfensohn, the World Bank President, said that Turkey should have confidence in itself and that Turkey's success will bring foreign capital to the country.

    SABAH (LIBERAL)

    THREE TARGETS OF PRESIDENT SEZER
    President Ahmet Necdet Sezer announced his priorities which will have effects on the following seven years. Sezer told James Wolfensohn, the World Bank President, that the law system will become in consonant with the European Union (EU) standards and that the administration of the country will be more efficient. Sezer listed the priorities which will change Turkey's image as follows: ''The administration will become transparent. The struggle against corruption will be given momentum.'' Wolfensohn promised to support these reforms.

    CUMHURIYET (LEFT)

    ANKARA STARTS TO TAKE GIANT LEAP FORWARD
    Foreign Minister Ismail Cem will pay a series of visit to the Central Asian countries and the Caucasus. The first leg of Cem's visit will be Azerbaijan. Upon the request of President Ahmet Necdet Sezer, the Foreign Ministry starts to pursue a more efficient poliy in the region. Cem will discuss the bilateral relations and the regional problems in Baku. The main items of the agenda of the meeting will be the latest developments in the natural gas and oil pipeline projects and Russia's new Caucasus policy.

    14 NATO COUNTRIES JOIN 'DYNAMIC MIX MANEOUVRES'
    The ''humanitarian aid'' part of the Dynamic Mix 2000 Manoeuvres, which is organized by NATO Southeastern Europe Joint Commandership, started in Corlu yesterday. General Rıfkı Durusoy, the NATO Southeastern Europe Joint Headquarters Planning and Operation Department Chief, said that this is the biggest NATO maneouvres which is concerted by the NATO Southeastern Europe Joint Commandership and to which is jointly be held by the sub-regional commanderships of NATO. Durusoy added that 14 NATO countries' forces will exercise many military targets from humanitarian aid to transfer of forces to operation field including land, sea and air activities.

    RADIKAL (LEFT)

    EVERYTHING TO BE FINE
    The economy will revive by the money that will be received from the World Bank, privatization, the licence sale of GSM tender and tourism. The rise and fall in the interest rates seem quite normal. The government abides by the commitments although there are some delays sometimes. The support that is expected from the World Bank depends on the fulfillment of the commitments defined in the letter dated March 10, 2000.
    LAW IN TURKEY LAW IN THE WORLD
    President Ahmet Necdet Sezer received World Bank President Wolfensohn yesterday. Sezer told the World Bank President that he will make the legal system of Turkey in corcordant with the EU. ''Turkey has to be supported,'' Sezer added.

    YENİ BİNYIL (LIBERAL)

    IT CAN PASS ITS CLASS WITH AN AVERAGE MARK
    The Council of Europe Parliamentary Assembly (COEPA) Control Commission concluded its two-year examination and said that Turkey is in the right direction. The ''Draft Report on Turkey'' which will be discussed in Paris on June 9, evaluated the democracy, human rights and the position of the citizens of Kurdish origin in Turkey. The positive developments in Turkey are the election of a lawman as the President, the formation of National Human Rights Commission under the Prime Ministry, the increase in the punishments of those who commit torture or maltreatment, and the decrease in the conflicts in Southeastern Anatolia Region.

    A DEMOCRATIC CONSTITUTION, CONSTITUTIONAL CITIZENSHIP
    Deputy Prime Minister Devlet Bahceli said that constitutional amendment which will end the ethnical discrimination, is necessary. Bahceli requested democratization of politics and fortification of jurisprudence. Bahceli said, ''putting ethnical discrimination against the democratization project is the biggest tramp in front of us. Constitutional amendment which rejects ethnical and religious discrimination and which takes the rights and freedoms under guarantee, is necessary.''

    TURKIYE (RIGHT)

    THREE CRITICAL ISSUES IN MGK MEETING
    President Ahmet Necdet Sezer will preside the first National Security Council (NSC) meeting that will be held on May 30. Three critical issues are at the agenda of the meeting namely the relations with Iran, with Russia and the assassinations.

    SIGNATURE OF 759.6 MILLION DOLLARS
    World Bank President James Wolfensohn signed yesterday the Economic Reform Credit that will be given to Turkey. State Minister Recep Onal signed the agreement on behalf of Turkey. The World Bank extended 759.6 million dollars to Turkey to help the country carry out its ambitious economic reform program. The loan is the first chunk of more than 5 billion dollars, which the World Bank said it would make available over a three-year period to help Turkey implement a strict IMF-backed anti-inflation program, reform its banking system and boost its struggling economy.

    ZAMAN (CONSERVATIVE)

    ASIK:YESIL IN TURKEY
    Eyup Asık, a former state minister claimed that a mafia boss Yesil (Green) still lives. ''I heard that Yesil came to Turkey a short time ago and he met with his friends,'' said Asık and added that Yesil tells the lie that he is dead because he want police to close the ''Yesil'' investigation.

    HEZBOLLAH TERRORISTS INVOLVED IN 47 MURDERS
    Istanbul Security Directorate issued a statement about the ''Malazgirt Operation'' staged on May 19 night against the terrorist Hezbollah organization in Kartal district of Istanbul. The statement noted that 14 suspects including two women and Hacı Inan, a top-member were captured in the operation. The statement noted that the 14 members of the terrorist Hezbollah organization confessed the police that they were involved in the kidnappings of 47 persons and t hen killing them.

    [02] FLOOD DISASTER IN SAMSUN AND TOKAT

    -PREMIER ECEVIT SAYS TWO SISTERS DIE AFTER JUMPING OUT OF WINDOW
    ANKARA - Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit said on Saturday that two sisters, aged 11 and 12, drowned after they jumped out of the window of their home in Yenice village of Carsamba town of Samsun.

    Speaking to reporters, Ecevit said that ''they panicked from the flood waters. I am extremely heartbroken.''

    Floods triggered by torrential rains in Turkey's northeast inundated hundreds of homes and knocked down bridges, the Prime Minister Ecevit said.

    The floods inundated a swath of about 6,000 hectares (some 15,000 acres), Ecevit said. The government sent tents to the region to shelter hundreds forced to leave their homes.

    ''Air transportation with Samsun will not be provided for few days, yet we are pleased that measures were taken to prevent dams from overflowing.

    Thousands of people were without power in Samsun and authorities opened flood gates at a nearby dam to prevent severe damage, said Metin Ilyas Aksoy, the provincial governor.

    Floods engulfed dozens of village roads around Samsun and caused at least two bridges to collapse, he said.

    In the nearby province of Tokat, a few hundred kilometers south, the floods destroyed crops, while wastewater, clean water systems and irrigation wells overflowed. Railway lines and roads were also damaged.

    ''This is our worst disaster in 50 years,'' said Tokat governor Murat Ayvalioglu. The railway lines between Turhal and Zile were closed to traffic due to the flood, he added.

    Meanwhile the Red Crescent sent an assistance team to the region.

    The Red Crescent noted that the aid consists of 100 tents and 400 blankets.

    [03] TURKEY-WORLD BANK (1)

    -STATE MINISTER ONAL:
    -''THREE-MONTH PERFORMANCES OF THE MACRO-ECONOMIC PROGRAMME
    ARE HOPE INSPIRING AND ENCOURAGING''
    ANKARA - State Minister Recep Onal said on Saturday that three-month performances of the macro-economic programme are hope inspiring and encouraging.

    Speaking in the signing ceremony of the 759.6 million U.S. dollar Economic Reform Loan (ERL) granted to Turkey by the World Bank, Onal said that the loan agreement is the indicator of World Bank's confidence in developments in Turkey's economy, and the determination and following performance of the government.

    Onal noted that the necessary infrastructure will be ensured for an efficient and productive expenditure reform and the medium-scale budget system.

    The public finance system will be made more transparent, Onal also said.

    Onal continued, ''our efforts in gradually lifting the input, loan and price subsidies and in privatizing the agricultural State Economic Enterprises (SEEs) will continue. Also, our efforts will continue to fortify the social security system and widen its scope, to pass Electricity Market Law and to establish an independent regulation organization, to liberalize the natural gas sector, and to privatize the SEEs''

    ''Our government attributes importance to becoming successful in the comprehensive reform programme to save our country and nation from the burdens which negatively affect the economic and social development potential. The implementation of the programme without making any concessions, is the concrete indicator of our determination,'' Onal added.

    Onal stated that he believes that the World Bank's support will continue with other structure adjustment loans which are planned to be granted for the reconstruction of the financial system and for the public sector reform initiatives.

    Onal stressed that the ERF will financially and technically contribute to Turkey's efforts in materializing the structural elements of the economic program that is being supported by the stand-by agreement signed with the International Monetary Fund (IMF).

    Turkey targets at using this loan in implementing a macro-economic program including the public expenditure reform, in re-constructing the social security, agriculture, telecommunication and energy sector, and implementing the privatization program, Onal emphasized.

    Onal said that Turkey has recorded significant developments in the structural leg of the macro-economic programme until today.

    Onal listed the new Social Security Law, Banking Law, the formation of Banking Regulation and Audit Board, the constitutional amendment on international arbitration, establishemnt of Telecommunication Agency, and the third tender of the Global System for Mobile Communication (GSM) licence as some of the positive developments recorded until today.

    [04] TURKEY-WORLD BANK (2)

    ANKARA - James Wolfensohn, the World Bank President, said on Saturday that Turkey's population will reach 80 million in 20 years and that Turkey will become the biggest population of Europe.

    Following the signing ceremony of the Economic Reform Loan (ERL), Wolfensohn told reporters that the World Bank has changed a lot and that within this framework, the negotiations regarding the ERL were held in Turkey not in Washington D.C.

    Wolfensohn noted that they are ready to extend necessary support to Turkey's economic program and that the support extended to the government is a full support.

    He held contacts with the President, Prime Minister, the representatives of public and private sectors and the non-governmental organizations, Wolfensohn stated.

    Wolfensohn stressed that the parliament and the government put forward a very clear program and that the World Bank will fulfil its responsibilities within this framework.

    Responding to a question, Wolfensohn said that the ERL is a part of the structural adjustment loans and that within the framework of the earthquake, they extended nearly 1 billion U.S. dollars to Turkey.

    Wolfensohn noted that they will grant 5 billion U.S. dollars in the following three years and that this amount will be released in portions.

    Responding to a question on energy sector, Wolfensohn said that he does not have different ideas than the government's ideas on the reconstruction of the energy sector and that the energy sector reform is a significant one.

    Wolfensohn added that the World Bank will extend the necessary support to Turkey in the reconstruction of the energy sector.

    The Financial Sector Adjustment Loan (FSAL) and the reconstruction of the public banks will be on the agenda this summer, Wolfensohn said.

    Wolfensohn stated that the World Bank will also support Turkey in the reconstruction of the public banks.

    Wolfensohn added that he believes that if it is necessary, the support to the banking sector should be extended as soon as possible.

    [05] TURKEY WORLD BANK (3)

    ANKARA - James Wolfensohn, the World Bank President said on Saturday that ''what I can say in my three-day visit to your country is that this partnership will continue as being very effective and productive.''

    Wolfensohn stressed that World Bank should do its best as a good partner and this is very important in respect of development of global and geopolitical economy.

    Speaking in the signing ceremony of Economic Reform Credit agreement worth of 759,6 million dollars, Wolfensohn said that ''as I said before, this government has put forward the program in a very clear way.''

    ''Turkey will become the biggest country of Europe by reaching the population of 80 million in the coming 20 years,'' said Wolfensohn, adding as State Minister Recep Onal said they are in parallel with the programs Turkey started to implement and they give full support to the Turkish government in that respect.

    ''We are ready to extend a series of our support to the government if it requests,'' said the World Bank President.

    (to be continued)

    [06] TURKEY-WORLD BANK (4)

    ANKARA - James Wolfensohn, the World Bank President, said on Saturday that the World Bank does not want to be a dictating organization and that it wants to be an organization which can understand its partners.

    Following the signing ceremony of the Economic Reform Loan (ERL), Wolfensohn told reporters that neither the World Bank and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) nor the United Nations (U.N.) can mark success in a country only by themselves.

    Wolfensohn also said that the views of the parliament, non-governmental organizations, private sector, and all the other sectors carry importance.

    The World Bank does not want to be an organization which examines the figures but wants to be an organization which has the liability to give an explanation, Wolfensohn noted.

    When asked whether or not World Bank's recipes had effects on Turkey's reaching its economic targets, Wolfensohn said that Turkish people determine Turkey's targets and standards rather than an organization.

    Wolfensohn stated that the World Bank or the IMF do not impose standards on countries and that the countries determine their standards by themselves.

    Turkish people wanted to fortify its legal system and government, to change its social security and retirement system, to struggle against corruption, Wolfensohn stressed. He added that all these are radical targets and that the World Bank only says that it can assist Turkey in reaching these targets.

    Wolfensohn emphasized that none of the countries can economically get developed only with the IMF and World Bank loans.

    Turkey will attract foreign capital as it determines its economic targets and gets developed, Wolfensohn pointed out.

    Wolfensohn said that foreign people will not only bring money but also technology.

    Turkey will be confident in itself, and the World Bank will help Turkey, Wolfensohn noted.

    Wolfensohn added that he believes that countries should mark economic developments together with social justice.

    [07] PRESIDENT SEZER RECEIVES WOLFENSOHN

    ANKARA - President Ahmet Necdet Sezer received on Saturday the World Bank President James Wolfensohn.

    Presidential Press Centre said that President Sezer told the World Bank President that Turkey gives priority to making its legal system concordant with the European Union (EU) and to developing its institutional infrastructure.

    Sezer thanked Wolfensohn for the World Bank's cooperation and extending credits to Turkey due to the quake disasters that took place in Turkey last year.

    The government attributes great importance to implementation of the economic program by the contributions of the World Bank, said Sezer and noted that arrangements have to be made in national and international law in line with these developments.

    Sezer pointed out that Turkey, which is a legal state, has customs union with the EU and it prepares for EU full membership, adding Turkey will give priority to applications such as transparency in country administration, struggle with corruption and holding liability for the things one does.

    Leap forwards in education and reform projects will continue in Turkey to make the contry's administration be more effective and productive, said Sezer.

    Turkey is aware of its responsibilities in a geography extending from the Central Asia to the Balkans, from the Caucasus to the Middle East and it is ready for cooperation with the World Bank for the prosperity and peace of the region, said Sezer.

    World Bank President James Wolfensohn said in his part that he had the opportunity to meet with officials from the parliament, government and non-governmental organizations and his visit to Turkey has been very successful.

    He visited the quake hit area and he listened to the problems of agriculture sector from farmers, said Wolfensohn and added that he believes that the government will be successful in implementing the economic program.

    The support extended to Turkey should be speeded up when the geopolitical and economic importance and status of Turkey are taken into account, he added.

    World Bank is ready to help Turkey for all of its reform activities, said Wolfensohn and added that they foresee a support program of 5 billion dollars for Turkey in the coming three years.

    Wolfensohn added that their support will not be limited to the public sector, adding they will also extend support to the private sector investments.

    [08] WORLD BANK PRESIDENT WOLFENSOHN DEPARTS FROM TURKEY

    ANKARA - James Wolfensohn, the World Bank President, departed from Turkey on Sunday.

    After wrapping up his three-day visit to Turkey, Wolfensohn departed from Esenboga Airport of Ankara.

    Prior to his departure, Wolfensohn told A.A correspondent that he had very positive impressions during his visit and that his visit was very fruitful.

    Johannes Linn, the World Bank Deputy President, said that Wolfensohn's visit is the indicator of the support that the international community extends to Turkey.

    Linn also said that following this visit, the relations between the World Bank and Turkey will improve and the Bank's support to Turkey will increase.

    [09] CUBAN AGRICULTURE MINISTER DEPARTS FROM TURKEY

    ISTANBUL - Alfredo Jordan Morales, the Cuban Agriculture Minister, departed from Turkey on Saturday.

    Huseyin Ece, the Deputy Istanbul Governor and other officials, saw off Morales at the Ataturk Airport of Istanbul.

    Morales paid a two-day official visit to Turkey upon the invitation of Husnu Yusuf Gokalp, the Agriculture and Rural Affairs Minister.

    [10] EARTHQUAKES SHAKE KUTAHYA, AYDIN, MARMARA SEA

    ISTANBUL - Earthquakes shook western Kutahya and Aydin provinces and Marmara Sea.

    Officials of the Bogazici University Kandilli Observatory Center and Seismology Institute said on Sunday that an earthquake measuring 3.0 on the Richter scale shook Tavsanli township of Kutahya at 11.21 p.m. on Saturday.

    The officials noted that an earthquake measuring 3.0 on the Richter scale jolted Marmara Sea at 1.25 a.m. on Sunday.

    Another earthquake measuring 3.0 was recorded in Germencik township of Aydin at 3.08 a.m. on Sunday, the officials said.

    [11] FOREIGN MINISTER CEM LEAVES FOR BAKU

    ANKARA - Foreign Minister Ismail Cem left for Baku for a one-day official visit on Sunday.

    An earlier Foreign Ministry statement noted that Cem would hold contacts to further develop the existing ''perfect'' relations between Turkey and Azerbaijan.

    Besides commercial and economic relations; energy, education and cultural issues and regional and international issues that concern the two countries will be taken up during Cem's visit to Azerbaijan.

    Cem will return to Turkey on Monday.


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