|Sunday, 31 May 2020|
Turkish Press Review, 00-04-12
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From: Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs <http://www.mfa.gov.tr>
Summary of the political and economic news in the Turkish press this morning
 FROM THE COLUMNS... FROM THE COLUMNS... FROM THE COLUMNS...
 DISCUSSIONS ON THE PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION BY HASAN CEMAL (MILLIYET)
 LEADERS' SUMMIT POSTPONEDThe expected meeting yesterday of the leaders of the coalition partners to determine a joint candidate for presidency has been postponed due to the illness of Premier Bulent Ecevit. The Office of Presidency declared that the date of the summit would be announced later. Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit has been suffering from flu ever since he returned from a trip to India early this month and has been resting at his home for a couple of days. /Turkiye/
 TURKISH-EU ASSOCIATION COUNCIL COMES TO AN ENDAfter receiving candidacy status to the European Union (EU) during the Helsinki Summit last December, Turkey began the period of 'cooperation' with the EU yesterday in Luxembourg. During the '39th Association Council', which was held yesterday, concrete steps were taken in the financial and technical field. After the meeting, which was held in a very positive atmosphere, a report entitled the 'Situation of Relations between Turkey and the European Union' was published. Previously there was a bilateral political dialogue between Turkey and the European Union, but from now on, Turkey will be able to attend all the meetings with the other candidate and member countries to the EU and publish a joint declaration. In one of the articles of the report, it was written, "The EU will support Turkey in the field of developing human rights for all the Turkish citizens, including those of the Kurdish origin." This kind of an expression is being used for the first time for this issue, which was called the 'Kurdish problem' before. Furthermore, the EU will donate 15 million Euros to Turkey to contribute to the financing of necessary arrangements for membership to the EU. In addition, the EU will start the process of 'screening.' Within this framework, it was decided that eight sub-committees will be established between Turkey and the European Union. /Sabah/
 TURKEY'S EU CANDIDACY STATUS IS BEING QUESTIONEDThe 'Christian Science Monitor', a leading US newspaper, states that dream of EU membership, which should be realized for many Turks, was being questioned in Turkey following the granting of EU candidacy status to Turkey during the Helsinki Summit. According to an article entitled 'Is Turkey fed up with the EU?' written by Scott Peterson, some people in Turkey were fed up with hearing complaints concerning the human rights record in Turkey. The article said that it was uncertain to what extent the EU and Turkwey could harmonize with each other. The Representative of the European Commission to Turkey, Karen Fogg, said, "Many Western Europeans are serious about Turkey's entry into the EU. There is a more mature understanding from the standpoint of geostrategical realities". /Cumhuriyet/
 PAPANDREOU COMMENTS ON TURKEY'S CONTRIBUTION TO HIS SUCCESSFollowing the PASOK Party's victory during the elections in Greece, George Papandreou, who is expected to be the Minister of Foreign Affairs in the new government, delivered a speech during the press conference that was held after the Turkish-European Union Association Council, and said, "The spirit of Helsinki contributed greatly to my winning the election. The result of the election shows that the Greek nation appreciates our foreign policy, including Helsinki." Papandreou also met the Turkish Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ismail Cem, in Luxembourg. During this meeting, Cem congratulated Papandreou and wished the continuation of his success. Meanwhile, Papandreou stated that they would continue their policy of rapproachement in the relations between Turkey and the European Union and that it will even be sped up. /Sabah/
 BETTER RELATIONS WITH TURKEYOne of the first acts of the winner of the Greek elections, Kostas Simitis, during his new four-year term is to continue the process of rapprochement with Turkey. Cooperation in energy and double taxation are the topics on the agenda. After that, the Aegean issue, the most important issue between the two countries, will be taken up. Nine agreements which were signed by the Foreign Ministers of the two countries, during their reciprocal visits, will be presented to the Greek Parliament for ratification. The Greek government will also evaluate the Turkish Football Federation's offer for a joint application to host the 2008 European Football Championship. In May, Turkish war planes will land at Greek military bases for the first time during the NATO Dynamic Mix manoeuvres. /Turkiye/
 MOSES' MEETINGSAmerican President Bill Clinton's Special Envoy for Cyprus Alfred Moses who came to Ankara for official contacts will meet Minister of State, Sukru Sina Gurel and Undersecretary of Foreign Ministry, Faruk Logoglu today. /Turkiye/
 VERHEUGEN COMMENTS ON TRNC'S MEMBERSHIP TO THE EUThe European Commission's member responsible for expansion, Gunter Verheugen, stated that the presence of Turkish soldiers in the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC), will not be an obstacle for the TRNC's full membership to the European Union (EU). During the press conference that was held after the Turkish-European Union Association Council, Verheugen said, "I was in the TRNC recently. As I told Mr. Denktas, the presence of the Turkish army is not an obstacle to full-membership." /Sabah/
 EU AMBASSADORS' MEETINGEU Ambassadors in Ankara discussed Turkish foreign policy with Foreign Ministry Undersecretary Faruk Logoglu at a luncheon yesterday. The Ambassadors reportedly conceded that Turkey has been playing an active role in its region and has recently taken initiatives in its region. /All papers/
 CHP AT EPThe Deputy Chairman of the Republican People's Party (CHP) Inal Batu and Deputy Secretary-General Sule Bucak attended the Socialist Group Meeting of the European Parliament as observers and associate members yesterday. During the previous meeting of the Socialist Group, it had been decided that a delegation from the CHP will attend the group meetings as an associate member from now on. /Cumhuriyet/
 TANTAN VISITS ALBANIAThe Minister of the Interior, Sadettin Tantan, issued a statement prior to his departure from Istanbul's Ataturk Airport to go to Albania as the official guest of Albanian Interior Minister Spartak Poci and said that acts of violence were on the rise in both Turkey and throughout the world. Tantan pointed out that security forces should take measures before the criminal actions and prevent these events likely to occur. /Cumhuriyet/
 TURK TO VISIT VIENNAJustice Minister Hikmet Sami Turk will go to Austria today to attend the 10th Congress for the Prevention of Crimes and the Rehabilitation of Criminals organized by the UN. Turk will deliver a speech to Congress in Vienna on April 14 and point out the importance of the rule of law in the 21st century. /Cumhuriyet/
 DUTCH INTERIOR MINISTER TO VISIT TURKEYDutch Interior Minister Kaas de Veries will not cancel his visit to Turkey on April 19 despite the murder of two English football fans, who were stabbed to death in Istanbul last Wednesday. Speaking about the deaths that preceded the Galatasaray-Leed United match, De Veries said that incident could have taken place in any country, but unfortunately it happened in Turkey. The Netherlands is one of the co-hosts of the Euro 2000 Championship this summer. /Turkish Daily News/
 CROATIAN ECONOMY MINISTER SEEKS TURKISH INVESTMENTCroatian Economy Minister Goranko Fizulic has called on Turkish businessmen to invest in his country. In a meeting at the Eurasia Strategic Studies Center (ASAM) on Monday, Fizulic said Turkish businessmen should make use of the $180 million Turkish Eximbank credit allocated for Croatia. Citing tourism as a field for potential cooperation, Fizulic stated that he was impressed with what he saw in Antalya and the speed with which Turkish tourism has developed. Fizulic pointed out that Croatia is willing to contribute to the Southeastern Anatolia Project (GAP) and the Manavgat River Project, which Turkey intends to use to sell water to Israel and other Middle Eastern countries. /Turkish Daily News/
 TURKEY CONDEMNS IRAN CONCERNING TERRORISMThe Joint Security Committee eatablished to solve security problems between Turkey and Iran convened yesterday in Ankara. Turkey once again condemned Iran for its support of both the PKK terrorist organization's activities within its territories and for the fundamentalist and terrorist Hizbullah organization. Turkey also wanted a decision taken concerning the implementation of 'concurrent operations' against terrorism. Interior Ministry Deputy Undersecretary Rasih Ozbek is heading the Turkish delegation while the Security General-Director of Iranian Interior Ministry Huseyin Mirzai Mulahkar is chairing the Iranian delegation. /Cumhuriyet/
 EXTRADITION OF FEHRIYE ERDALSpokesman of the Belgian Justice Ministry, Rosanne Germonprez, stated that there was no decision taken concerning the extradition of Fehriye Erdal to Turkey and refuted all news to that end. The Spokesman remarked that the decision would be taken by Justice Minister Marc Verwilghen and added that the announcement of this decision would take at least five months. /Cumhuriyet/
 BLUE STREAM NATURAL GAS PROJECTThe loan agreement amounting to 1 billion 800 million dollars for the construction of the Blue Stream Natural Gas Project was signed in Moscow yesterday. Russian natural gas company, Gazprom, and the Italian, German and Japanese banks signed this agreement. This loan agreement envisages the financing of the construction of the project's land and sea parts that begins from Russia's Stavropol region and reaches the Black Sea waters and then Samsun. /Star/
 STATEMENT OF THE 'DEFENCE NEWS' MAGAZINE'Defence News' magazine, which is the magazine of the defence circles in the US, stated that defence relations between Turkey and the US were enjoying their best period and that Ankara was preparing to select the 'King Cobra' helicopter, an American model, during the huge attack helicopter tender amounting to 4 billion dollars. /Aksam/
 EASTERN MEDITERRANEAN-2000 MANOEUVRES'Eastern Mediterranean-2000 Cooperative-Joint Naval Manoeuvres,' which is one of the planned manoeuvres of the Turkish Armed Forces, has begun. These manoeuvres, which aim to increase the mutual training and cooperation between the Turkish and allied naval forces and which is hosted by Turkey, will continue until 22 April both in the Aegean and the Mediterranean Sea. Battle Fleet's Commander, Vice Admiral Metin Atac will direct the manoeuvre. /Star/
 GEN.TOTSKI TO VISIT TURKEYRussian Border Defence Units Commander Gen.Kosntantin Totski will begin a two-day visit to Turkey today. According to a statement from the Border Defence Unit's press office, a cooperation agreement on border defence will be signed between Turkey and Russia.
Meanwhile, Turkey and Russia will sign the Black Sea Territorial Waters Responsible Parties Cooperation Treaty today in Istanbul. The Coast Guard Commandant stated that a delegation headed by Lt.Gen.K.V.Totski would arrive from Russia to sign the agreement. /Turkish Daily News/
 WASHINGTON PRAISES TURKEY'S RECENT ECONOMIC PERFORMANCEThe Turkish government's determination to decrease inflation and maintain reforms is encouraging, said US Undersecretary for Economic and Business Affairs Alan Larson yesterday. Speaking at a press conference in Washington, Larson said it would be a mistake to focus on short-term developments in order to improve the Turkish economy and US-Turkish economic relations. He said he was impressed by the emphasis which the Turkish delegation, at the Turkish-US Joint Economic Council (JEC) meeting two weeks ago in Washington, placed on Turkey's determination to continue economic reforms and reduce the high inflation rate. Larson added that he is pleased that the 'Open Skies' agreement between Turkish Airlines (THY) and American Airlines has been signed. /Turkish Daily News/
 TURCO-GREEK FRIENDSHIP INFLUENCES THE ECONOMYThe warming of relations that began between Turkey and Greece after the earthquake that occurred in Turkey is beginning to produce good results in the economic arena. 'Economic Bridge', which was established by Finance Invest, Global Menkul and Fiba Holding, will add a new bracket by Garanti Investment. Garanti Investment is working on two projects together with the biggest bank in Greece, National Bank of Greece. One of these projects is Bati Soke Cement Company's public offering and the other project concerns the 'Special Capital Fund'. Bati Soke Cement Company will be introduced to investers abroad during a meeting that will be held today in Athens. Furthermore, the 'Special Capital Fund' will be established with a capital amounting to 30 million dollars. /Sabah/
 WORLD TURKISH BUSINESSMEN'S CONVENTIONThe Third World Turkish Businessmen's Convention has been ended. Two thousand businessmen from 51 countries have attended the two-day convention. In addition to President Suleyman Demirel and Foreign Minister Ismail Cem, Turkish businessmen, investing in Turkey or abroad, delivered speechs and talked about issues concerning them. On the second day of the convention, 13 separate meetings were held. The Convention was held at Lutfu Kirdar Congress and Exhibition Centre and 66 firms established their stands on 800-square metre area. Sabanci Holding, Turkcell, the Union of Turkish Chambers and Commodity Exchanges (TOBB), Istanbul Stock Exchange (IMKB), the Union of Istanbul Ready-To-Wear Clothes' Exporters and Unit International S.A were the main sponsors of the convention and the total cost of the convention was expected to be one million dollars. /Hurriyet/
 INCOME EARNED FROM PRIVATIZATION: 2.5 BILLION DOLLARSThe Privatization Administration Board (OIB) continues to implement the privatization programme and in the meantime the amount of privatization has reached 2.5 billion dollars since the beginning of this year. This number is the greatest reached by Turkey since 1985, the year in which privatization work started. /Sabah/
 THE LAST DAY IN THE GSM TENDERToday the winner of the GSM tender will be determined. Minister of Communication, Enis Oksuz, met the Nationalist Action Party (MHP) leader Devlet Bahceli yesterday and gave information on the GSM tender. Oksuz said, "Tomorrow the winner of the GSM tender will be determined and we will broadcast the tender on TV. After the applications were made for the tender, the investigation was held both in Turkey and abroad. Then, it was decided which companies were suitable for this work. These companies will compete with each other in a very competitive and gently manner. If any company does not obey the rules, then it will be excluded from the competition. Furthermore, the State will earn money from this tender." /Sabah/
 DEMIR-HALK BANK IN COLOGNEDemir-Halk Bank, which was established in 1992 with the cooperation of Turkish Halk Bank and Demirbank, and whose centre branch is in Holland, opened its 10th branch in Europe, in Cologne. Demir-Halk Bank's branch in Cologne will be active and have the authority to operate a variety of banking transactions. /Sabah/
 SIEMENS BECOMES PARTNERS WITH THE EGSSiemens A.G.'s General Representative to Turkey, that is, Simko Trade and Commercial Joint Stock Company and the EGS Group of Companies decided in principal to cooperatively establish a company in order to ensure the management and administration of the the real estate belonging to the EGS Real Estate Investment Cooperation. It was stated that the projects, which will be implemented by cooperation between the Simko Company with a rate of 51% and EGS Company with a rate of 49%, will consist of the EGS Business Park in Yesilkoy and the buildings and shopping centres in the Aegean Region. /Aksam/
 MOODY'S GIVES GOOD MARK TO VAKIFBANKInternational rating company, Moody's Investors Service, stated that Vakiflar Bank's situation was 'positive' and gave the Vakiflar Bankasi 'B1" for the preference bond without guarantee that will be made by the Vakiflar Bankasi. Vakiflar Bankasi will make its borrowing in the euro, with a period extending to the year 2003. /Aksam/
 TURCO-AUSTRIAN BUSINESS COUNCILChairman of the Turco-Austrian Business Council, Umit Dikmen, stated that Austria should increase Turkey's share of 1% in the trade volume. Dikmen, delivering a speech during the Turco-Austrian Business Council, within the Foreign Economic Relations Council, said that Turkey would be the tenth biggest market in the world and that they were happy to see that the Austrian businessmen were carrying the aim of investing. /Star/
 FNSS IN DEFENCE BIDDINGThe FNSS Company, a Turco-US partnership based in Ankara, will participate in the bidding for the purchase of armed vehicles worth $1.7 billion by the US Land Forces. According to an article published in 'Defence News' magazine, with the participation of the FNSS, which previously sold 1,698 armed vehicles to the Turkish Army, a Turkish company will have the opportunity to take part in a huge American defence project for the first time. /Cumhuriyet/
 FOREIGN DEBT REPAYMENTSAccording to the Treasury Undersecretariat, the public and private sectors will repay a total of $24.782 billion in foreign debts this year. Out of this total, $19.426 billion constitutes middle- and long-term debts while $5.356 billion is repayment of interest. /Cumhuriyet/
 TURKEY IN FIRST TENFamous British science magazine 'Focus' placed Turkey among the ten countries in the world where the biggest economic developments are expected over the next 20 years. In the article, it was stated that Turkey would experience an 'economic boom' in 2020. Stressing that Turkey was an attractive country for investors, the article also underlined the fact that among European countries, Turkey had one of the largest population. /Turkey/
 TURKISH-GREEK JOURNALISTS' CONFERENCETurkish and Greek journalists will discuss the role which could be played by the media in order to further develop relations between the two countries. Turkish journalists Suleyman Gencel and Can Dundar and Greek journalists Manolis Mathodokis and Sophia Voultepsi will deliver speeches at the conference in Ankara tomorrow, which was organized by seven journalism organizations. /Cumhuriyet/
 GREECE AT APRIL 23 FESITIVITIESThe Turkish Radio and Television Corporation (TRT) 22nd International April 23 Children's Festivities will be held between April 16 and 27 in Kusadasi and Selcuk under the sponsorship of the Koc Conglomerate. TRT General Director Yucel Yener held a press conference in Istanbul yesterday and said that nearly 900 children and 300 adults from 41 countries would take part in the festivities. Yener stated that Greece and Eritrea would attend the festivities this year for the first time and added that more than 17,000 guests from 87 countries had been hosted since 1979. /Cumhuriyet/
 BRITISH FANATICS' ATTACKSFollowing the incidents which occured last week in Istanbul resulting in the deaths of two British hooligans before the football match between Galatasaray and Leeds United, British fanatics' on-going attacks on Turks are increasing. Encouraging by certain newspapers, fanatics target especially Turkish businessmen and their shops in Britian. In the latest incident, Mehmet Kaya, a Turkish man, was beaten badly in province of Hull by three British assailants. In addition, about ten thousand Turks, living around Leeds and Hull provinces, were under threat of attacks by British fanatics. /Hurriyet/
 FROM THE COLUMNS... FROM THE COLUMNS... FROM THE COLUMNS...
 TAKING UP THE MAIN ISSUES BY SAMI KOHEN (MILLIYET)"Columnist Sami Kohen writes on what should be the next phase of the Turco-Greek relations. A summary of his column is as follows:
"Now that the Greek General Elections are over, it is time to consider the next stage of Turco-Greek relations. The fact that Prime Minister Simitis has remained in power provides an opportunity to continue the policies of recent months. The distance covered in the improvement of relations between the two countries is an important achievement. The previous lack of confidence felt between the two countries is being replaced by an atmosphere of trust, which is promising for the future.
Now its time to start talks in the "second lane." Certainly, great tasks wait to be worked out in the "second lane." Efforts should be should shown by both sides to carry out the provisions of the agreements signed. However, as long as the main disputes are not taken up and sorted out between the two countries, it is not possible to base relations on solid ground or continue the process of rapprochement.
In principle, both sides believe that the essential problems should be solved. However, at present, there are serious disagreements on how to approach these issues.
Greeks believe that the Cyprus problem is at the top of the agenda that priority should be given to its solution, and that if progress is achieved on the issue Turkish-Greek relations would improve more easily. Athens would like discussions concerning Cyprus to take place within the framework of the UN resolutions and with the contribution of the EU...Concerning the Aegean, for Greece the only problem is the continental shelf and this could be solved by taking the problem to the International Court of Justice at the Hague. In general, Greece pins her hopes to the contributions of the EU in Turco-Greek disputes. In other words she would like to leave the solution of these problems to the EU.
Turkey believes that there is an on-going process in Cyprus. Cyprus should not take priority in Turco-Greek relations. A dialogue is necessary on the Aegean problem. The issue is not only the continental shelf , but the territorial waters, as well as disarmament of the Greek islands. Turkey would like to solve these through negotiations, but if necessary she is willing to go to the International Court of Justice at the Hague. Another proposal on the matter which is to increase confidence building measure in the Aegean.
We have to confront the main issues and not lose the momentum gained in recent months. A dialogue is necessary to come to an agreement on how to handle these issues. The warm relations between Ismail Cem and George Papandreu can provide the grounds for such a dialogue. Both Foreign Ministers will come together in New York at the beginning of next month. This could be a good opportunity for the sides to determine a process on the main issues. If Prime Minister Simitis comes to Ankara as expected, important steps can be taken concerning the matter.
The hardest part of the work in Turco-Greek relations is beginning. The important thing is to utilize a creative and compromising policy to overcome the difficulties.
 DISCUSSIONS ON THE PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION BY HASAN CEMAL (MILLIYET)Columnist Hasan Cemal writes on ythe Presidential Election. A summary of his column is as follows:
"The Chairman of the Motherland Party, Mesut Yilmaz said in the meeting of his party's parliamentary group, that Turkey should not talk of the Presidential Election day and night. He is correct. However, the politicans talk of nothing else. In the recent months nothing else has been discussed. We can say that some issues which should have taken priority in the agenda of the Government were neglected.
The meeting of the European Union Partnership Council which took place after an interval of three years showed that there are some issues which should be taken up speedily to enable the EU membership of Turkey. In other words, in the fight against inflation and for EU membership, the issues which have to be dealt with both by the Government and the Parliament are accumulating.
However, the political process is being stifled by the issue of Presidential Elections. The meeting of the Coalition party leaders which was expected to take place yesterday was postponed due to the sickness of the Prime Minister. However one thing is certain. Prime Minister Ecevit and the Nationalist Action Party leader Bahceli do not want Motherland Party leader Yilmaz to become a candidate.
The coalition party leaders may hold a meeting with the opposition party leaders.If no solution comes out of this meeting, then Ecevit, Bahceli and Yilmaz may meet to agree on a candidate within the Parliament or from outside. If this too fails, and Yilmaz says that he wants to be elected, Ecevit and Bahceli may meet. Meanwhile, the Motherland Party, the Virtue Party and the True Path Party may form a block. Or, from 26 April onwards everyone can go on their own.
Discussion on the Presidential Election will go on.
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