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Turkish Press Review, 96-07-19
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From: Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs <http://www.mfa.gov.tr>
TURKISH PRESS REVIEW
FRIDAY JULY 19, 1996
Summary of the political and economic news in the Turkish press this morning
 US LAUNCHES NEW BID FOR CYPRUS PEACEU.S. envoy Madeleine Albright plunged into talks with Turkish and Greek Cypriot communal leaders of Cyprus in a renewed American attempt to settle the Cyprus problem in a bi-communal federation, stressing the need to soothe relations between Turkey and Greece. Albright met separately yesterday with Turkish Cypriot President Rauf Denktas and Greek Cypriot leader Glafkos Clerides.
According sources, Albright mainly concentrated on security issues at her meeting with both Denktas and Clerides and stressed the importance of the implementation of the confidence-building measures proposed by the U.N. secretariat. The confidence-building measures were accepted "in principle" by the Turkish Cypriot side, but were rejected by the Greek Cypriot administration. Sources said Albright, who was scheduled to travel to Ankara last night via Athens, also stressed to her Cyprus contacts that for a settlement of the Cyprus problem, improved relations between Ankara and Athens were required. /All Papers/
 TURKISH EXPORTS TO GERMANY RISEIn the first two months of the customs union in 1996, exports to Germany increased to DM 1.4 billion, the semi-official Anatolia news agency reported. Total exports to Germany were valued at DM 1.409 billion while imports were DM 1.590 billion.
Meanwhile, the Turkish-German Economic Collaboration Council will hold a meeting on September 24-25 in Germany to discuss progress in bilateral commercial relations.
 TURKEY WELCOMES GO-AHEAD FOR EU ECONOMIC PLANTurkish Foreign Minister Tansu Ciller said on Wednesday that she welcomed the European Union's agreement on an ambitious trade and investment plan for the Mediterranean, blocked for months by Greece. But she said Turkey was still studying an EU declaration on external relations in the region, which Greece says Turkey must accept before the so-called MEDA agreement goes ahead. Ciller, in Dublin for talks with Ireland, which currently holds the EU presidency, said Greece's decision to lift its veto on the MEDA plan was "a good step in the right direction." She said Turkey's acceptance of a declaration by EU foreign ministers calling on Mediterranean states to show "good neighbourliness" and respect democracy for was not a precondition for implementation of the plan. /All Papers/
 TURKISH PM SAYS FOREIGN EXCHANGE MARKETS STABLETurkish Prime Minister Necmettin Erbakan said on Thursday that the local foreign exchange market was stable and predicted interest rates would fall gradually.
"The foreign exchange (market) has settled and interest rates will fall gradually," he told a meeting of his Islamist Welfare Party (RP). Erbakan reiterated his plans to use "natural resources" to finance government projects. Speaking to the group meeting he said that the government aimed to alleviate poverty as rapidly as possible. To this end, he pledged to transfer the state Poverty Fund to local governerships to distribute to those who live below the poverty line. "The Poverty Fund will be used for the poor," he said. Erbakan also said that some of the taxes paid by small traders would eventually be eliminated while the state found new sources of revenue./All Papers/
 US SENATOR NUNN EXTOLS TURKEY'S NATO STATUSA senior U.S. senator, Democrat Sam Nunn of Georgia, has praised the crucial role Turkey is playing within the NATO alliance but declined the opportunity to evaluate the significance of secularism in U.S.-Turkish relations. The U.S. State Department told Turkish journalists on Monday that secularism was not a must for the continuation of bilateral relations. Nunn, Democratic member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, said: "I believe that Turkey is one of the most important allies. She is extremely important for NATO, and I think she'll continue to be an extremely important part of NATO. America needs to pay a great deal of attention to Turkey and to help that country in every way we can."/All Papers/
 IRANIAN OFFICIAL IN ANKARA FOR BORDER TALKSIranian deputy Foreign Minister Alaaddin Burujerdi arrived in Ankara today for another round of meetings about recent border attacks. Burujerdi, who brought messages from Iranian President Ali Akbar Hasami Rafsanjani to Demirel and Prime Minister Necmettin Erbakan, reiterated on his arrival in Ankara that joint delegations should investigate the incidents at the border. Burujerdi said that Turkey's Islamist-led coalition hopefully would improve relations between the two countries. "We want to have a visit by the Turkish prime minister as soon as possible and also we are expecting President Rafsanjani to visit Turkey." Burujerdi said that Iran expected a visit by Interior Minister Mehmet Agar. "Reciprocal and frequent visits of state officials are very important for the improvement of relations," said Burujerdi./All Papers/
 TWO TURKISH JOURNALISTS RELEASED FROM RUSSIAN PRISONTwo Turkish journalists, who were arrested by Russian secret service officials nine months ago while crossing the border between the Russian states of Dagestan and Chechnya, have now been released. /All Papers/
 MOSCOW RELEASES OFFICIAL VIEW ON REFAHYOL GOVERNMENTRussia yesterday made its first official comment on the Refahyol coalition that won a vote of confidence on July 8. The Russian Foreign Ministry Spokesman said that the coalition represented an unprecedented example in the history of Turkey. Russia would continue to follow closely political developments in Turkey, the Russian Spokesman noted, and expressed the hope of the Russian government that friendly bilateral relations would be preserved for the benefit of the whole region. /Hurriyet/
 EUROPALIA`97 CANCELLEDThe Europalia`97 Turkey Festival has been cancelled on the grounds that the agreement concerning the preparations for the festival was not renewed. The preparations for the festival have been going on for two years. Europalia Turkey General Director Bulent Eczacibasi admitted that during the period of political instability after the 1995 elections some delays had occured, but added that failure to renew the festival agreement by July 1, had not caused any serious omissions in festival preparations. Eczacibasi pointed out that a great opportunity to promote Turkey had been missed, and suggested that the exhibitions, concerts and shows included in the high-quality comprehensive festival programme could be valuable at other promotion initiatives.
Europalia is a cultural festival organized since 1969. The Europalia Foundation promotes a different country at every festival. /Milliyet/
 PKK CAMP NEXT TO HAMMER BASEDuring a briefing yesterday, Prime Minister Necmettin Erbakan was told by officials in the Turkish Armed Forces that there was a PKK terrorist camp right next to the Provide Comfort Military Coordination Centre (MCC) in northern Iraq.
Officials pointed out that photos taken from the air confirmed that the PKK camp was very close to the multinational Provide Comfort base. The force, often referred to as the "hammer" rapid deployment strike force, has been stationed in Turkey to control developments in the region. This latest disclosure confirms Ankara's concern that Provide Comfort needs to be re-designed from the top. /Cumhuriyet/
 RUSSIANS ASSURE ANKARA ABOUT PKKHead of the Turkish parliamentary delegation visiting Moscow, Mustafa Kalemli, was yesterday asssured by Russian Prime Minister Chernomyrdin that his government was not about to support the PKK terrorist organization.
The Russian Prime Minister said that the Russian government had not been fully informed about the PKK, and that in future the government would not allow PKK meetings in the Federation. He added that all governmental departments would be notified about the decision. /Cumhuriyet/
 TURKISH SECURITY FORCES KILL NINE PKK MILITANTSTurkish security forces killed nine militants of the PKK terrorist organization in a clash in southeast Turkey, the emergency rule governor's office said in a statement yesterday. The clash took place on Tuesday in the province of Sirnak, security officials said. Ten terrorists who escaped from the separatist organization in Sirnak and Tunceli surrendered to security forces. Twenty-six PKK members caught in Bingol, Bitlis, Diyarbakir, Elazig, Hakkari, Mardin, Sirnak and Van, were arrested. Operations still continue in the region. /Sabah/
 LOCAL BY-ELECTIONS ON 3 NOVEMBERThe High Electoral Board (YSK) stated that local by-elections would be held on November 3, 1996, to contest seats in all municipalities and provincial assemblies which will become vacant by 2 September. A YSK decision regarding this issue was promulgated in the Official Gazette yesterday. /Cumhuriyet/
 TURKEY AND CHINA AGREE ON TEXTILE QUOTASFollowing the agreement reached by Turkey and China on textile quotas at meetings in Beijing between 15-17 July, it is expected that Turkey's exports to China will increase. Foreign Trade Undersecretariat EU Deputy General Director Munir Yetkin said that the agreement was now effective. According to the agreement, two-way quotas will be implemented in cotton and synthetic clothing and ready-wear products. A meeting will be held in Turkey in September about silk, for which Turkey implements a one-way quota system. /Sabah/
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