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Turkish Press Review, 98-02-05

Turkish Press Review Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs <http://www.mfa.gov.tr>

05.02.98

Summary of the political and economic news in the Turkish press this morning


CONTENTS

  • [01] CEM MAKES CONTACTS IN IRAQ
  • [02] "TURKEY DOES NOT WANT WAR"
  • [03] US COMMENTS ON INCIRLIK
  • [04] YILMAZ COMMENTS ON IRAQ SITUATION
  • [05] VICE ADMIRAL ABBOTT IN ANKARA
  • [06] EU SUPPORTS SOUTHEASTERN ANATOLIA
  • [07] 37 IRAQIS DETAINED
  • [08] SHATTUCK ON HUMAN RIGHTS: HOPEFUL OF YILMAZ GOVERNMENT
  • [09] SANBERK: TURKEY WANTS TO GIVE PEACE A LAST CHANCE
  • [10] BLACK SEA BANK BOARD TO HOLD FIRST MEETING TODAY
  • [11] PKK PAYING A HEAVY PRICE
  • [12] US TRADE REPRESENTATIVE HOLDS CONTACTS IN ANKARA

  • [01] CEM MAKES CONTACTS IN IRAQ

    Turkish Foreign Minister Ismail Cem arrived in Baghdad yesterday afternoon. Cem was welcomed at El Resid Military Airport by Iraqi Foreign Minister Muhammed Said El Sahaf. Cem and El Sahaf held a meeting yesterday evening. First Undersecretary of the Iraqi Foreign Ministry Saad El Feysel also attended the meeting. Cem is expected to meet Iraqi Head of State Saddam Hussein today. Cem will deliver a message from Turkish President Suleyman Demirel to Saddam Hussein. Demirel warned in his letter that there might be a war. It is reported that Cem took "comprehensive solution proposals" to the Baghdad administration. Cem noted that members of the UN Security Council viewed Turkey's initiative as "positive".

    Meanwhile, Governor of the State of Emergency Rule Region, Aydin Arslan, said that in order not to be confronted with a mass immigration crisis because of the threat of war between the UN and Iraq, necessary measures were being taken along the borders.

    On the other hand, US Secretary of Defense William Cohen delivered a speech at the US Senate and said: "If US President Bill Clinton decides to make a military move against Iraq, we expect all the Gulf countries' support". He also added that he was sure that the US would also receive Turkey's support. /Cumhuriyet/

    [02] "TURKEY DOES NOT WANT WAR"

    Although concerned about the stockpiling of weapons of mass destruction in Iraq, Foreign Ministry Deputy Spokesman Sermet Atacanli stressed yesterday that Turkey does not want a war against Iraq. Atacanli again emphasized that Turkey prefers using diplomatic channels to resolve the serious crisis involving Iraq and the US.

    During the weekly Foreign Ministry press conference yesterday, Atacanli said that taking every possibility into consideration, Turkey was taking every preventive measure possible. Avoiding commenting on Turkey's newly hardening stance, Atacanli merely said that Ankara hoped that the crisis would not escalate further, and added "Nobody wants a war with Iraq, the US does not want a war. Everybody wants to resolve the situation diplomatically." /Sabah/

    [03] US COMMENTS ON INCIRLIK

    US State Department Spokesman James Rubin issued a statement yesterday and said that they were sure that when they needed Incirlik base in Turkey, Turkey would meet their demands. Rubin noted that Turkey and the US were in consensus that Iraq should comply with UN resolutions. Rubin stated that US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, upon her return from a Middle Eastern tour, had a phone conversation with Prime Minister Mesut Yilmaz. He said that Albright had agreed that they believed it would be beneficial to make a diplomatic call to Baghdad as, in fact, Turkey had. /Sabah/

    [04] YILMAZ COMMENTS ON IRAQ SITUATION

    Speaking to his party's parliamentary group behind closed doors, Prime Minister Mesut Yilmaz said that Iraq possesses missiles with enough range to hit Kayseri and Malatya. He also noted that possible wave of refugees would be stopped in Iraqi territory before it could reach the Turkish borders. Yilmaz said that if the US demanded the use of Incirlik base to launch a strike against Iraq, the issue would be brought before Parliament.

    Yilmaz explained that the US will likely use a special substance that will prevent any harmful effects from gasses released if Iraq's chemical weapons were hit by the US. The gasses of the chemical weapons, he said, were capable of reaching Turkey. The US did not aim to topple Saddam Hussein, but to eliminate Iraq's weapons of mass distruction, the prime minister stressed, warning that in case Saddam is toppled, his son Uday, who is even more fanatical, might take his place -a development which could be more dangerous for the Mideast. /All papers/

    [05] VICE ADMIRAL ABBOTT IN ANKARA

    While the crisis between the US and Iraq moves towards a climax, the commander of the US 6th Fleet, Vice Admiral Charles Abbott, came to Ankara yesterday. Abbott, today, will be meeting with high level commanders of the Turkish Army. He is likely to request military support and permission to use Incirlik base in case the US launches a military attack against Iraq. /Milliyet/

    [06] EU SUPPORTS SOUTHEASTERN ANATOLIA

    The head of Diyarbakir Chamber of Commerce, Sirin Yigit said yesterday that the European Union will extend ECU 275 million to be used for meeting the humanitarian needs of the people living in the southeastern regions of Turkey. Yigit also said that the European Union Ambassador to Ankara had asked him to brief him about the region. /Milliyet/

    [07] 37 IRAQIS DETAINED

    In the Uzunkopru district of Edirne, 37 Iraqi people, including 13 children and 12 women, who were trying to cross the border illegally, have been detained. Two Turkish suspects, thought to have brought the Iraqis to Uzunkopru region, were taken into custody. /Cumhuriyet/

    [08] SHATTUCK ON HUMAN RIGHTS: HOPEFUL OF YILMAZ GOVERNMENT

    US Assistant Secretary of State for Democracy, Human Rights and Labour, John Shattuck, testified on Tuesday before a subcommittee of the House International Relations Committee, during which he drew an unflattering picture of the human rights situation in Turkey, although he also mentioned that the Yilmaz government had made a commitment for human rights reforms. This month, Shattuck will be travelling to Turkey, Serbia and Croatia. /All papers/

    [09] SANBERK: TURKEY WANTS TO GIVE PEACE A LAST CHANCE

    Turkey's Ambassador to London Ozden Sanberk told CNN's "This Morning" programme yesterday that Turkey was going to assume a position of responsibility in the Iraqi crisis as a regional country. "Turkey is a NATO member, but at the same time we are a regional country and we have affinities with the Iraqi people and we know that the Iraqi people have suffered" Sanberk said, responding to a question about what action Turkey was going to take.

    Referring to Turco-Israeli cooperation, Sanberk said Turkey's relations with Israel could not be confined to defense matters only, but would include other areas, such as trade. "Turkey is not the only country having relations with Israel in the region and Turkey's cooperation with Israel on defense matters is on issues such as equipment and training, and is not aimed against any third country" Sanberk stated.

    [10] BLACK SEA BANK BOARD TO HOLD FIRST MEETING TODAY

    The first meeting of the board of governors of the Black Sea Economic Cooperation Bank will be held today in Thessaloniki, Greek National Economy Minister Yannos Papandoniou told reporters on Tuesday. The bank, based in Thessaloniki, was decided to be established during a 1992 summit of leaders of the 11-nation Black Sea Economic Cooperation group and aims to finance and promote infrastructural projects and develop commercial ties among member countries.

    [11] PKK PAYING A HEAVY PRICE

    The PKK terrorist organization has paid a huge price in human lives in its warfare against the regime. According to figures issued by the Governor of the State of Emergency Rule Region in the southeast of the country, Aydin Arslan, over the past eleven years the PKK has lost over twenty thousand members, killed in conflict with Turkish security forces.

    Figures also show that large numbers of civilians and almost five thousand members of the security forces and village guards have lost the lives in the fight against PKK terrorism. /Sabah/

    [12] US TRADE REPRESENTATIVE HOLDS CONTACTS IN ANKARA

    US Permanent Representative to the World Trade Organization (WTO) Ambassador Rita Hayes, who paid an official visit to Ankara this week, has held meetings with Prime Minister Mesut Yilmaz, Foreign Miniter Ismail Cem, State Minister Isın Celebi and other top level officials. In her contacts with Turkish representatives, Ambassador Hayes discussed Turkish textile exports to the US and Turco-American trade relations in general. In a press conference yesterday, Ambassador Hayes said that President Clinton attached great importance to Turkey, and added that "President Clinton wants expanded trade between our two countries to be a vital element of our relations in the years ahead." /Milliyet/

    END


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