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Anadolu Agency: News in English, 00-05-29

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

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

29 MAY 2000 Monday


CONTENTS

  • [01] TURKEY-PRESS SCAN
  • [02] 12TH INTERNATIONAL ANKARA FILM FESTIVAL ENDS
  • [03] TURKISH TRADE DELEGATION IN IRAN
  • [04] TOURISM HEALTH CENTERS TO BE OPENED IN TURKEY'S TOURISM CENTERS
  • [05] MOODY'S ANALYSES TURKISH ECONOMY:
  • [06] FOREIGN MINISTER CEM:
  • [07] FOREIGN MINISTRY MARTYRS DAY
  • [08] FOREIGN MINISTRY MARTYRS DAY
  • [09] FINANCE MINISTER SUMER ORAL:
  • [10] STATE MINISTER ONAL: ''THERE IS NOT ANY SERIOUS
  • [11] FOREIGN MINISTRY MARTYRS COMMEMORATED
  • [12] JUSTICE MINISTER TURK: ''WE WILL NOT HESITATE TO PUNISH
  • [13] STATE MINISTER ONAL: ''THE INFLATION RATES IN FIRST FOUR MONTHS
  • [14] IMF TURKEY DESK CHIEF COTTARELLI:
  • [15] PISKINSUT, CHAIRMAN OF PARLIAMENTARY HUMAN RIGHTS COMMISSION,


  • [01] TURKEY-PRESS SCAN

    These are some of the major headlines and their brief stories in Turkey's press on May 29, 2000. The Anadolu Ajansi does not verify these stories and does not vouch for their accuracy.

    HURRIYET (LIBERAL)

    PRIME MINISTER ECEVIT: ''CAPITAL PUNISHMENT SHOULD BE LIFTED''
    Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit said, ''Belgium has decided not to extradite Fehriye Erdal, a member of the illegal Revolutionary People's Liberation Party-Front (DHKP-C) and one of the suspects of assasination of businessman Ozdemir Sabanci, because of capital punishment in Turkey. The capital punishment should be lifted.''

    CROATIAN PASSENGER SHIP RESCUES TURKISH SEAMEN WHOSE BOAT SANK
    A Croatian-flagged passenger ship rescued nine Turkish seamen whose boat had sunk near Catania Port in Italy. The Turkish seamen were brought to Dubrovnik Port in Croatia by the passenger ship named ''Oriana''. They will proceed to Sarajevo on Monday morning by bus. Later, they will leave Sarajevo for Istanbul by plane.

    LIGHTNING STRUCK STADIUM, KILLING ONE PERSON
    Lightning struck a stadium in Bolu province, killing one soccer player and injuring two others. Demise of Sinan Bolukbasi, 19, a university student, created profound sorrow among his relatives and friends.

    FLOOD CAUSES FINANCIAL DAMAGE OF 20 TRILLION TL
    Floods triggered by torrential rains inundated hundreds of dwellings and business places in Samsun province in Black Sea Region. Hasan Gemici, the State Minister, came to Samsun. He said, ''cultivated fields of 16 thousand hectares have been flooded. We cannot contact with 32 villages in the region. Floods engulfed dozens of village roads around Samsun and caused four bridges to collapse.''

    MILLIYET (LIBERAL)

    PENDIK AIRPORT TO BE OPENED IN 2001
    Sabahattin Cakmakoglu, the National Defense Minister, said that the Sabiha Gokcen Airport in Pendik district of Istanbul would be opened till 2001. Cakmakoglu stressed that the airport which will cost 300 million U.S. dollars, had the capacity to serve 3 million passangers.

    WE AIM AT INCREASING TRADE VOLUME WITH IRAN TO 1.5 BILLION U.S. DOLLARS
    A business delegation headed by Kursat Tuzmen, the Undersecretary of Foreign Trade, started contacts in Iran. Tuzmen said, ''trade volume between Turkey and Iran was about 800 million U.S. dollars in 1999. We aim at increasing our trade volume with Iran up to 1.5 billion U.S. dollars.''

    TERRORISTS KILL ONE SECURITY OFFICIAL
    Members of the terrorist Hezbollah organization hurled hand grenades on security forces who launched an operation in a hide-out in eastern province of Erzurum. One security official was killed while two others were injured. Later, clash erupted between security forces and terrorists. One terrorist was killed in the clash. Security forces seized two computers, two weapons, three hand grenades and 60 bullets found in the hide-out.

    SABAH (LIBERAL)

    LIVE MEETING THROUGH VIDEO CONFERENCE SYSTEM
    State Minister in charge of Economy Recep Onal said he and World Bank Chairman Wolfensohn will have ''live meetings'' every three months using video conference system. ''World Bank believes that the government's programme will produce good results. They are stressing that structural reforms are needed for future. Therefore, Wolfensohn told us that they want to contact us more frequently and he proposed the video conference system,'' Onal said. Onal also noted that IMF is about to complete its examinations over the first four months of Turkish economy.

    JOURNEY TO HOPE
    The government has been successful in pulling down the interest rates, inflation and foreign currency rates bu it failed to make the same progress in export and investment. The government was founded on May 28, 1999 in the middle of a economic crisis and it took important steps in economic stability. In its combat against inflation, the government could not prevent the rise in inflation rate in the first nine months of its administration. However, the inflation rate started to decline in the last two months. All these indications are showing that the government might be able to reach its 25 percent inflation rate which it targeted for the end of 2000. The government, however, did not display a good performance in export. The Turkish export increased only by 0.8 percent in the first two months of 2000.

    CUMHURIYET (LEFT)

    STATE MINISTER GEMICI IN FLOODED REGIONS
    State Minister Hasan Gemici visited the flooded Black Sea townships of Ayvacik and Carsamba. Governor Ilyas Aksoy of Samsun furnished Gemici with information on the damage wrought by the flood. He told Gemici, that over 40 village roads had been damaged and 2 bridges had collapsed in the floods, and that more than one thirds of the Carsamba plains had also been floded by violent streams. Gemici reassured that the goernment would take the necessary measures to help those who had suffered from the damage that the floods inflicted and help them compensate their loss.

    CEM IN BAKU
    Foreign Minister Ismail Cem went to the Azerbaijani capital Baku to carry out contacts with various officials. Cem was welcomed at Bine Airport by his Azerbaijani counterpart Vilayet Guliyev with an official ceremony. Cem told reporters that he and Guliyev would be exchanging views on bilateral relations and various regional and international issues of common concern, and seek means of further developing the friendly relations between the two countries.

    CONFERENCE ON E-BANKING
    A conference on ''Banking anod Finance'', the first of a conference series on ''e-commerce'' is being organised with the contributions of the Central bank, by the Bogazici University's Department of International Trade. Among the sponsors of the conference, which is to take place odn June 2nd and 3rd in Istanbul, are Garanti Bank, Turkish Economy Bank, Arthur Andersen, and Turkcell.

    RADIKAL (LEFT)

    ECEVIT: ''CAPITAL PUNISHMENT SHOULD BE ABOLISHED''
    Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit, who made a statement to the reporters of the Prime Minister's Office and journalists from various media organs on Sunday, while celebrating his 76th birthday, said that he wanted capital to be abolished. Referring to the Belgian authorities decision not to extradite Fehriye Erdal, one of the defendants of the Sabanci assassination, Ecevit said, ''We have long been wanting to abolish the capital punishment. So long as it remains in force, we will not be able to become a European Union member anyway. I believe that the 57th government will do whatever might be necessary on this account.''

    ATHENS-SARIYER FRIENDSHIP
    The ''Friendship Festival'' organised and by the employees of the municipalities of Athens and Sariyer, Istanbul, continued on Saturday with a ''friendship match'' at Sariyer's Yusuf Ziya Onis Stadium. The Athens Municipality team won the match by 2-1, and the sports event was viewed cheerfully by a crowded audience. Fedon, a popular Turkish singer, colored the festival with a brilliant concert he gave on the occasion of the festival. In the half-time break, Mayor of Sariyer Sedat Ozsoy presented Acting Mayor of Athens, Jannis Gogozotos with a friendship plate, and thanked ''all Greek brothers and sisters who had extended a helping hand to Turkey in the wake of the Marmara quake''. In return, Jannis Gogozotos extended an olive branch to Ozsoy, and expressed wish that the friendly relations between the two countrie would further develop.

    WOLFENSOHN: ''IT WAS A PLEASING VISIT''
    World Bank Governor James Wolfensohn completed his 3-day visit to Turkey and left Ankara. Speaking to reporters at Ankara's Esenboga Airport, Wolfensohnn said that he had positive and pleasing impressions from his visit. Johannes Linn, Wolfensohn's deputy, who also spoke to reporters before taking off from Ankara, said that Wolfensohn's visit was an indication of the importance that the international community attached to Turkey, and expressed belief that this visit would serve for not only improved relations between the World Bank and Turkey, but also for a greater World Bank support.

    YENİ BİNYIL (LIBERAL)

    ORAL PROMISES TO GIVE EXTRA WAGE INCREASE TO CIVIL SERVANTS
    Finance Minister Sumer Oral said they will make an additional increase in the wages of civil servants if the consumer prices increase more than 15 percent. ''If the inflation exceeds 15 percent, civil servants will get additional raise,'' Oral said. The lowest wage for civil servants will increase about 4 million Turkish Liras (TL) and become 124 million with the raise.

    TURKSERVE.COM STARTS BROADCAST ON INTERNET
    Turkserve.com which has been prepared for Turkish people all around the world and especially for those who live in Britain started broadcast with a ceremony held in London on Sunday. On Saturday night, the new internet site was promoted at a show at the British Parliament. The authorities said Turkserve.com will be very helpful for Turkish citizens who want to find to find out the current news in Turkey.

    TURKIYE (RIGHT)

    NEW AGENDA: REFORM
    Turkey which has relieved after terrorism was eradicated and the unsolved homicides were revealed, has started to return its real agenda. The government is preparing to spread stability program in economy to the other fields. The government aims at finalizing investments in Eastern and Southeastern Anatolia, and accelerating transportation and infrastructure works in the region.

    WORLD BANK CHIEF WOLFENSOHN DEPARTS FROM TURKEY
    James Wolfensohn, the President and Chairman of Executive Directors of World Bank, departed from Turkey after wrapping up his three-day official visit. Addressing journalists at the Esenboga Airport in Ankara, Wolfensohn said that his visit to Turkey was very productive and positive. Meanwhile, Johannes Linn, the Deputy Chairman of World Bank for Europe, said that Wolfensohn's visit to Turkey was a sign of support given to Turkey by the international community.

    CEM IN BAKU
    Ismail Cem, the Foreign Minister, who is currently in Azerbaijani capital of Baku on an official visit, will come together with President Haydar Aliyev of Azerbaijan, Azerbaijani Prime Minister Artur Rasizade, his Azerbaijani counterpart Vilayet Guliyev, and Murtuz Aleskerov, Speaker of Azerbaijani Parliament, later on Monday. Cem's contacts are expected to focus on cultural, political and economic cooperation between the two countries, and the latest developments in Baku-Ceyhan oil pipeline project.

    ZAMAN (CONSERVATIVE)

    PARRIS, U.S. AMBASSADOR TO TURKEY, TO VISIT SOUTHEAST
    Mark Parris, the U.S. Ambassador to Turkey, will start a five-day tour including Van, Batman, Hakkari and Sirnak provinces in eastern and southeastern Anatolia. Parris whose term in office will come to an end in July, will be the first U.S. Ambassador visiting the region for years. Parris is expected to hold meetings with governors, mayors, representatives of non-governmental organizations, residents, businessmen and students during his visit. He will visit the universities, historical and touristic places in the region. Sources said that Parris' visit to Southeastern Anatolia aimed at increasing U.S. private sector's investments in the region.

    ECEVIT: ''I DID NOT ENTER INTO POLITICAL
    LIFE WILLINGLY AND CONSCIOUSLY''
    Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit said, ''I did not enter into political life willingly and consciously. My real occupation is journalism and I wanted to remain as a journalist, but the developments made me enter into politics.''

    [02] 12TH INTERNATIONAL ANKARA FILM FESTIVAL ENDS

    ANKARA (A.A) - The 12th International Ankara Film Festival ended on Sunday night after the award ceremony.

    ''May Boredom'' directed by Nuri Bilge Ceylan was chosen as the ''Best National Film'' by the jury headed by Prof. Dr. Oguz Makal.

    The award-winners of the 12th International Ankara Film Festival are as follows:

    Best National Film : May Boredom

    Best Director : Kutlug Ataman, Lola and Bilidikid

    Best Female Performance : Meltem Cumbul, Trial

    Best Male Performance : Kamran Usluer, Lady Salkim's Grains

    Best Supporting Actress : Guzin Coragan, Trial

    Best Supporting Actor : Burak Sergen, Bean - Elevator

    Best Original Screenplay: Etyen Mahcupyan and Taner Baran, Lady Salkim's Grains

    Best Film Editor : Chris Squires, Lola and Bilidikid

    Best Art Director : Mustafa Ziya Ulkenciler, Lady Salkim's Grains

    Best Original Music : Tamer Ciray, Lady Salkim's Grains

    Best Fiction : Sedat Karadeniz, Children of Dark City

    Best Promising Actor : Selim Erdogan, Bean

    Mahmut Tali Ongoren Special Award: Lady Salkim's Grains

    [03] TURKISH TRADE DELEGATION IN IRAN

    -FOREIGN TRADE UNDERSECRETARY TUZMEN URGES IRANIAN AUTHORITIES
    TO INCREASE TRADE VOLUME BETWEEN TURKEY AND IRAN
    TEHRAN (A.A) - Foreign Trade Undersecretary Kursat Tuzmen had two meetings with Iranian Industry Minister Gulamriza Riza Safei and Industry and Mineral Chambers Chairman Ali Naki Hamusi on Sunday.

    During his meeting with Safei, Tuzmen stressed that Turkey and Iran should develop industry relations and the two can make joint investments in third countries.

    Tuzmen said Turkish and Iranian investors can cooperate in construction equipment, petro-chemistry, food and steel industry fields. He also noted that Turkish investors are interested in sugar, paper and cement sectors. Tuzmen called on both sides to organize fairs, and increase cooperation for closer relations.

    Iranian Industry Minister Safei said they also wanted to develop industry and trade relations with Turkey and noted that Iranian laws over foreign capital transfer offer good opportunities. Safei also said he hoped small and medium scale enterprises in Turkey and Iran would also work together.

    When he came together with Ali Naki Hamusi, Tuzmen reminded him that the trade volume between the two countries was 2.3 billion U.S. dollars in 1985, however it dropped in the recent years and he asked Hamusi to work to increase the trade volume.

    Turkey is ready to lift its commercial limitations and open new horizons with Iran, Tuzmen said and proposed forming a joint trade council between Turkish and Iranian industrialists and merchants.

    Hamusi also explained that the trade between the countries drew zigzags in the last 20 years and added that Iran can reach out to European markets through Turkey. He said Turkey and Iran can work together in motor vehicle productions, durable consumption goods, energy, oil and natural gas sectors.

    [04] TOURISM HEALTH CENTERS TO BE OPENED IN TURKEY'S TOURISM CENTERS

    NEVSEHIR (A.A) - Health Minister Osman Durmus announced on Sunday that ''tourism health centers'' will be set up in Turkey's tourism centers to provide better health service to tourists.

    ''If the municipalities assign a building for this purpose, we will provide equipments and personnel in 15 days,'' Durmus told reporters during his trip in Nevsehir. He also said that Turkish people will also be able to benefit from these health centers.

    Durmus said the project will start from Nevsehir, Antalya, Istanbul, Izmir and Denizli.

    [05] MOODY'S ANALYSES TURKISH ECONOMY:

    ''ALTHOUGH CONSISTS OF THREE PARTIES, THE COALITION
    IS THE FIRST TO RECEIVE PARLIAMENT'S SUPPORT IN YEARS''
    NEW YORK/ANKARA (A.A) - Moody's, one of world's leading rating institutions said in an analysis report assessing the first three months of 2000 in Turkish economy, that the ruling coalition government in Turkey, consisting of three parties, is the first in years, to get the support of the parliament, and that it is pursuing a constructive and determined policy, also displaying a surprisingly high performance.

    According to the information compiled by the A.A correspondent from the analysis report, Turkey had long been suffering from high inflation rate and financial deficits, and that the coalition, headed by Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit was dealing with these problems within the framework of a comprehensive reform program, and with determination and confidence.

    The report drew attention to the considerable decrease recorded in interest rates with the implementation of the economic reform program, and said that privatisation programs had made a good and confident start, economic growth re-gained its pace in the wake of the 1997-99 global crises, and that the initial results indicated a surprisingly positive progress.

    The report warned, however, that the economic reform program had such risks as the continuance of the public financial sector's sensitivity against domestic and international crises, and the possibility of failing to render the program sustainable.

    The report drew attention to Turkey''s admission by the European union as a candidate member, and said Turkey's candidacy would force her to translate economic and political reforms into life, all at the same time.

    It also heralded an increase to the credit mark of Turkey-presently standing at B1- so long as political stability was preserved and reforms continued.

    [06] FOREIGN MINISTER CEM:

    -''TURKEY HAS SERIOUS AND CONCRETE RELATIONS
    WITH CAUCASIAN AND CENTRAL ASIAN COUNTRIES''
    ANKARA (A.A) - Ismail Cem, the Foreign Minister, said on Sunday, ''Turkey has very serious and concrete relations with Caucasian and Central Asian countries.''

    Addressing a television program on the state-run TRT-1 channel, Cem gave information about Turkey's foreign policy regarded with Caucasus and the Central Asia under the light of Russian President Vladimir Putin's recent visit to Turkmenistan.

    Cem said, ''Russia's policies concern itself. Russia wants to protect its interests. But Turkey has very serious and concrete relations with Caucasian and Central Asian countries. For these countries, Turkey is a guarantee of their independence and well-being. For instance, the Baku-Ceyhan oil pipeline project will guarantee independence of not only Azerbaijan and Georgia, but of Kazakhstan and other Central Asian countries.''

    Cem said, ''we are equal and friendly republics. Turkey has come to the forefront in investments in these countries. We will further improve our relations with them. Our competition with Russia is a peaceful one. Speculations about Turkmen natural gas do not reflect the truth. Turkey closely monitor developments in the region.''

    Stressing that they had recorded serious progress in relations with the European Union (EU), Cem said, ''we explained to our European counterparts that the issues such as human rights and minorities were not a group matter for Turkey. We told them that these issues were matter of individuals, rights and freedoms of citizens. They are not connected with concepts of ethnic backgrounds or races. They have begun to understand us.''

    Noting that he aimed at setting up direct relations with the European Parliament, Cem said that the issue would be high on his agenda as from September.

    Referring to the European Security and Defense Identity (ESDI), Cem said, ''I held my most difficult consultation during the NATO Summit in Washington, the U.S., in April 1999. I do not exaggerate. 18 countries were opposed to me. Eventually principles were included in the NATO's document in a way we wished. Afterwards, these principles were confirmed in Brussels in December 1999. But our works have not finalized yet. We are aware of the draft EU wants to put forward. But this draft are in contradiction with NATO's principles. NATO will assume an attitude against them. But we will assume an attitude before NATO. We are trying to change the faremework EU wanted to put forward. Our priority will be Turkey's benefits.''

    [07] FOREIGN MINISTRY MARTYRS DAY

    -PRESIDENT SEZER: ''TURKISH DIPLOMACY SHALL CONTINUE TO
    CONTRIBUTE TO INTERNATIONAL PEACE AND SECURITY''
    ANKARA (A.A) - President Ahmet Necdet Sezer said on Monday, that Turkish diplomacy shall continue to contribute to international peace and security.

    According to the Presidential Press Center, Sezer said in his message, that Turkish diplomacy had honored Turkey countless times with its loyalty to Ataturk's principle ''Peace at Home, Peace in the World'', and its successful defense of Turkey's national interests at international levels.

    ''Our diplomats have been serving for our country with a superior consciousness of duty and patriotic feelings, and have been representing our country successfully. However, they have become, at times, targets of those, uncomfortable with Turkey's power. As a result, many of our diplomats representing our country in missions abroad, have fell martyrs in terrorist attacks.

    Turkish diplomacy, which has taken very important responsibilities concerning the peace and stability of a wide geography stretching from the Atlantic to the Pacific, at the intersection of three continents, shall continue to contribute to internaional peace and stability.

    The Republic of Turkey shall preserve its quality of being the guarantor of peace and stability in the 21st century.

    I express my feelings of gratitude to all Foreign Ministry staff on behalf of the Turkish nation and the State,'' Sezer said in his message and sent his condolences to the families of the Foreign Ministry Martyrs.

    [08] FOREIGN MINISTRY MARTYRS DAY

    -PRIME MINISTER ECEVIT: ''I HOPE THAT CIRCLES HAVING EVIL
    INTENTIONS AGAINST TURKEY, WOULD GIVE UP SUPPORTING TERRORISM''
    ANKARA - Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit said on Monday, ''Turkey has always attributed great importance to international rules and good neighbourly relations. It has made a considerable contribution to stability and prosperity of the region. I hope that circles having evil intentions against Turkey, would give up supporting terrorism.''

    Prime Minister Ecevit issued a written message to mark the Foreign Ministry Martyrs Day.

    In his message, Prime Minister Ecevit said, ''we commemorate members of the Foreign Ministry and other public institutions who were killed in terrorist attacks while working abroad, with great respect. Our nation will always remember these 34 people who lost their lives in terrorist attacks. Turkey has always attributed great importance to international rules and good neighbourly relations. It has made a considerable contribution to stability and prosperity of the region. I hope that circles having evil intentions against Turkey, would give up supporting terrorism.''

    Prime Minister Ecevit also implored God's strength upon all who are grieving for their beloved ones.

    [09] FINANCE MINISTER SUMER ORAL:

    ''PRESIDENT OF WORLD BANK CONSIDERS THE
    POINT REACHED IN ECONOMIC PROGRAM VERY SUCCESSFUL''
    ANKARA (A.A) - Sumer Oral, the Finance Minister said on Monday that the World Bank President considers the point reached in economic program very successful.

    ''But we want the Turkish people and the Turkish women also to see this success,'' told Oral in a panel discussion on ''Recent Economic Policies and Tax.''

    The economic program has a political character and the owner of it is the government, said Oral.

    The targets in the economic program are realistic, said Oral and added that ''but the implementation is more important.''

    Describing the strong parliament behind the economic program as a great chance, Oral said that ''we must abide by the necessary criteria in these days when we opened the way to the European Union.''

    The inflation started to decrease, the expenditures are controlled and targets were reached in non-interest surplus, he said.

    Oral pointed out that the government tries to correct this wrong structure, adding the interests rates can't be decreased in a short time.

    ''The vital points of the program are finance policies and budget policy. We can't be succesful in our program if we can't be successful in them,'' said Oral.

    The program consists of three parts namely tax, privatization and expenditure, said Oral adding that the public expenditure reform is about to finish.

    The state tender draft law will bring honesty and transparency and the costs will decrease in the public sector, he said.

    The finance experts have a great role to play particularly in implementation of the economic program, added Oral.

    [10] STATE MINISTER ONAL: ''THERE IS NOT ANY SERIOUS

    DEVIATION FROM PROGRAM TARGETS FOR CURRENT BALANCE''
    ANKARA (A.A) - Recep Onal, the Minister of State for Treasury, said on Monday that any real valuation exceeding a reasonable level in foreign currency was not expected in the current stage of the program, and there was not any serious deviation from program targets for current balance.

    Addressing a panel discussion on ''Latest Economic Policies and Tax'', Onal said the foreign currency policy which had been planned to overcome inflationist pressures and the strategy that had been announced at the beginning of the implementation constituted the guarantee of the program.

    Onal stated that the transition into new currency policy in mid-2001 would increase the flexibility in this field.

    Noting that the macro economic developments had been positive, Onal stressed that the most important point was the determination in not loosening the discipline in public finance.

    Onal said that the consolidated public sector basic balance target for the first quarter had been achieved.

    ''The developments in April indicated that we can easily acvieve our targets as of end-second quarter. We have totally reached these positive results in the measures like foreign currency, privatization and structural reforms and in the measures aimed at providing financial harmony. An important discipline has been foreseen in consolidated public budget expenses and realistic estimation have been made for revenues. The influence in control of non-budgetary funds and financial structure of public economic enterprises has been increased. This positive development in consolidated budget implementations will gradually increase within framework of the measures taken by the government, and reflect in influence in tax management, control of unregistered economy, enlargement of tax basis and removal of losses in public revenues,'' he added.

    [11] FOREIGN MINISTRY MARTYRS COMMEMORATED

    ANKARA (A.A) - The Foreign Ministry personnel who were killed in terrorist attacks while they were working in Turkish representations abroad, were commemorated on Monday in Cebeci Graveyard.

    State Minister Sukru Sina Gurel said in the ceremony held in the Foreign Ministry Martyrs Monument, that they came together to commemorate the Foreign Minstry and other civil servants officials.

    ''Our pain can't be described, but our memories are alive. The Turkish nation and the Foreign Ministry have never been daunted by terrorist attacks,'' said Gurel and added that the struggle will be carried out against these cricles which take as target the unity and territorial integrity of Turkey.

    This is a spiritual duty towards martyrs, said Gurel and added that ''the efforts of Turkey, which has always defended peace and stability and which is a democratic, secular, social and legal state can't be prevented by some unpleasant incidents or by distorting historical incidents.''

    Gurel said that history shouldn't be used to support hatred and violence, adding there are some countries which extend support to Armenian terrorism. ''We call these countries to give up their wrong and hostile attitude,'' he said.

    Speaking in the name of the Foreign Ministry personnel, Sukriye Bayar said in his part that they've taken the Ministry martrys as models.

    [12] JUSTICE MINISTER TURK: ''WE WILL NOT HESITATE TO PUNISH

    THOSE WHO TORTURE PEOPLE''
    ANKARA (A.A) - Hikmet Sami Turk, the Justice Minister, said on Monday that they will not hesitate to punish those who torture people.

    Sema Piskinsut, the Chairman of the Parliamentary Human Rights Comission, visited Turk and submitted six reports prepared by the commission.

    Following the meeting, Turk told reporters that Turkey will impose sanctions on those who violate human rights.

    Turk noted that the commission investigated the human rights violations in the police stations and prisons in recent years and that it prepared six reports following this investigation.

    Turk continued, ''the reports of the commission will shed a light on our initiatives. We will impose sanctions on the human rights violations. These reports will be examined by the Punishment Affairs, Prisons General Directorate and Inspection Board.''

    The target of all these initiatives is ending the human rights violations in Turkey, Turk said.

    Turk emphasized that torture in Turkey in 21st century cannot be accepted.

    The punishments given to torture and maltreatment are increased, Turk stated.

    Turk stressed that what is more important is everybody's accepting that torture is a crime of humanity.

    The judicial system will fulfil its responsibilities to end the human rights violations, Turk said.

    Turk continued, ''Turkey will solve this problem. We are determined to investigate the torture allegations. Torture has never been a state policy.''

    The Constitution prohibited the torture, and they aim at making Turkey an example country in human rights, Turk added.

    Piskinsut said that their reports depend on concrete evidence and that they will prepare three more reports in the following days.

    [13] STATE MINISTER ONAL: ''THE INFLATION RATES IN FIRST FOUR MONTHS

    CLEARLY PUT FORWARD THAT WE CAN ACHIEVE THE TARGETS FOR END-2000''
    ANKARA (A.A) - Recep Onal, the Minister for State for Treasury, said on Monday that the inflation rates in Wholesale Prices Index (TEFE) and Consumer Prices Index (TUFE) in first four months of the year had clearly put forward that they could achieve the targets for end-2000.

    Addressing a panel discussion on ''Latest Economic Policies and Tax'', Onal said he believed the continuation of determination in struggle against inflation would be the most appropriate approach in spite of considering the progress recorded up until today as sufficient.

    ''This approach is supported by the speed of reconstruction in quake-hit area and recovery in agriculture and tourism. Besides the decrease in interest rates would lead to an increase in private sector's loan demand. Consequently, nobody is doubtful that we can easily achieve the growth performance foreseen in the program,'' he said.

    Onal said that the macro economic decision taken up until today and their results and structural reforms that had been put into practice were very important for development of Turkey's economic power and stability during EU full-membership process.

    Noting that public finance and tax management was one of the keys in program, Onal said that the government was preparing and putting into practice important structural reforms aiming at preparing, implementing and controlling budgets, increasing their transparency and recovering tax system and management.

    [14] IMF TURKEY DESK CHIEF COTTARELLI:

    ''WE'LL LEAVE TURKEY PROBABLY ON THURSDAY OR FRIDAY''
    ANKARA (A.A) - Carlo Cottarelli, the IMF Turkey Desk Chief said on Monday that they will leave Turkey probably on Thursday or Friday earlier than planned as their contacts in Turkey extended.

    Speaking to A.A correspondent, Cottarelli said they work on the details, adding the IMF Executive director Willy Kiekens who came to Turkey on Sunday, joined them.

    Cottarelli added that the negotiations on the IMF experts' working in World Bank Representation in Turkey are underway and no concrete result has been taken.

    The IMF delegation was expected to leave Turkey on Tuesday.

    [15] PISKINSUT, CHAIRMAN OF PARLIAMENTARY HUMAN RIGHTS COMMISSION,

    HANDS OVER TORTURE DEVICE TO PROSECUTOR'S OFFICE
    ANKARA (A.A) - Sema Piskinsut, the Chairman of the Parliamentary Human Rights Commission, handed over the torture device called ''Hook'', which is a wooden pole that is placed under prisoners arms and used to suspend them in the air, to the Ankara Republican Chief Prosecutor's Office.

    Piskinsut handed over the wooden pole to the Ankara Prosecutor's Office to be submitted to the Gaziosmanpasa Republican Chief Prosecutor's Office.

    The commission found the 2.15 metre long wooden pole in Kucukkoy Police Station in Istanbul.

    Piskinsut later submitted six reports on torture allegations which was prepared by the commission, to Yildirim Akbulut, the Parliament Speaker.

    Piskinsut said that they tried to be objective when preparing the report in the end of their two-year investigation, and not to politicize the issue.

    The reports regarding Elazig and Batman, will be concluded in the following weeks, Piskinsut noted.

    Piskinsut requested Akbulut to take this issue to the agenda of the Parliamentary General Assembly.

    The report will also be sent to the leaders of the political parties and all deputies, Piskinsut added.

    Akbulut said that he is ready to contribute to the efforts of the commission.

    Although Turkey has taken significant steps in democratization, it has not reached the desired level yet, Akbulut noted.

    Akbulut stated that the target of the parliament and Turkish nation is ensuring the rule of law and respect to human rights and that Turkey cannot reach a modern level unless it does not ensure these two conditions.

    When a journalist said, ''you said that there was not torture in Turkey when you were the Interior Minister. Was there torture then or was torture disguised?'', Akbulut said that handling this issue in this way has no use.

    Torture is not systematic in Turkey, Akbulut also said.

    Akbulut added, ''if these reports indicate that torture is systematic, then we will take measures.''


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