|Friday, 24 January 2020|
Turkish Press Review, 00-05-29
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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...
 WOLFENSOHN LEAVES TURKEY WITH POSITIVE FEELINGSWorld Bank President James Wolfensohn left Turkey yesterday with 'positive feelings' after an extremely productive three-day visit, he told reporters before leaving Ankara. Wolfensohn's visit marks the importance of Turkey's economic reform and disinflation program for the bank. "This visit will further boost ties between Turkey and the World Bank and the bank's support for Turkey as well" said Vice-President Johannes Linn, who accompanied Wolfensohn during his stay in Turkey.
Turkey and the World Bank sealed a $795.6 million Economic Reform Loan over the weekend, which is designed to help Turkey's efforts to carry out public expenditure reform; to restructure the social security, agriculture, telecommunications and energy sectors; and to accelerate prtivatization. As part of a $3 billion package, which has just been increased to $5 billion, Turkey and the bank will negotiate a further $750 million in Financial Sector Adjustment Loans this summer. /All papers/
 SEZER RECEIVES WOLFENSOHNPresident Ahmet Necdet Sezer received World Bank President James Wolfensohn at the Presidential palace. Speaking at the meeting, Sezer expressed his pleasure at seeing Wolfensohn in Turkey and thanked him for the cooperation and loans that the World Bank had provided after the August 17 earthquake. Pointing out that the government attached great importance to the continuation of the economic program with the contributions of World Bank, Sezer said that it was necessary to make regulations in line with the developments in national and international law while economic activity was intensifying at a global level. /All papers/
 FEVZI AYTEKIN IN SWEDENThe Minister of the Environment, Fevzi Aytekin, went to Sweden yesterday to attend the United Nations' Environment Programme's (UNEP) 6th Special Session (Global Environment Ministers' Forum). Aytekin made a statement at Istanbul's Ataturk Airport prior to his departure, saying, "It was decided that the Global Environment Ministers' Forum will be held every year at the General Council of the United Nations. The first meeting of this forum will be held in Malmo, Sweden between 29 and 31 May." /Cumhuriyet/
 ILO's LABOUR CONFERENCE TO BE HELD IN SWITZERLANDInternational Labour Organization's (ILO) 88th Labour Conference will be held in Geneva, Switzerland between 30 May and 15 June. This year more than 3,000 employees and employers from 176 countries will attend this conference, during which the improvement and education of human resources, professional vocational training, security and health of the agricultural workers, working hours of the coal miners and the decrease of these hours will be discussed. /Cumhuriyet/
 AMBASSADOR MARK PARRIS IN VANAmerican Ambassador to Turkey, Mark Parris, visited the Akdamar Church, as the first stop of his five-day visit to the Southeastern Anatolia. Parris will meet the local officials today. As part of his visit to the Southeastern Anatolia, Parris will also visit Hakkari, Sirnak and Batman. /Cumhuriyet/
 CEM'S STATEMENT CONCERNING IRAN AND RUSSIATurkish Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ismail Cem, stated that Turkey's relations with Iran was not on the desired level and that the initiatives by the Tehran Administration were insufficient. Cem answered the questions in the 'Pazar Panorama' programme, broadcast on the TRT channel, before his departure to Baku and said that the new administration in Iran was promising. Cem in a statement concerning the relations with Russia, said, "We will carry out both competition and cooperation with Russia in Central Asia. There will be some issues in which our benefits are concerned. A new concept is emerging, which is to live peacefuly in spite of the problems. We are one of the guarantees to enable the countries in Central Asia to stand on their own feet as independent countries." /Cumhuriyet/
 POLICE RAID IN ERZURUMA dawn raid mounted by police in Erzurum yesterday following a tip-off has resulted in the death of one Hizbullah terrorist and the capture of one wounded. The wife and two children of the wounded terrorist were also detained as standard procedure, having been found unharmed in another room. The operation also seized one computer, two pistols, parts from a used hand grenade and a large number of Hizbullah documents. The house has been determined to have been rented two months ago by the terrorists, who had moved there from Agri's Diyadin district. One police officer died in the operation. Other police officers wounded in the raid are said to be in good condition under hospital care. Meanwhile, it is reported that some 15 people -including two women- detained in Police Operation Malazgirt in Istanbul's Kartal district on May 19 were questioned and eight of them formally arrested in Istanbul on Saturday. /All papers/
 TURKISH TRADE DELEGATION IN TEHRANA Turkish delegation of 120 economic officials, businessmen and industrialists arrived in Tehran yesterday for a trade seminar. The delegation includes Foreign Trade Undersecretary Kursat Tuzmen and Foreign Trade Undersecteriat Export Managing Director Omer Berki. The Turco-Iranian Trade Seminar will focus on a bilateral exchange of views for the development of commercial relations. The Turkish delegation will also visit the Kis Island free-trade zone in the Persian Gulf. /All papers/
 FLOODS KILL TWO IN BLACK SEA REGIONFloods caused by heavy rain in the northeast provinces of Samsun and Tokat, killed at least two people, inundated hundreds of homes and knocked down bridges on Saturday. Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit stated that approximately 6,000 hectares of land were flooded in Samsun's Carsamba and Salipazari counties. In a statement to reporters about the incident, Ecevit said that apart from the land and houses, Samsun Airport was also flooded and electronic equipment there badly damaged. Meanwhile, the Turkish Red Crescent (Kizilay) sent a rescue team of six people and aid materials consisting of 100 tents and 400 blankets to the region. /All papers/
 TURKISH DEFENCE SECTOR INVESTMENTS ACCELERATINGA number of defence bidding process put out to improve and enhance the defensive capabilities of the Turkish Armed Forces (TSK) are almost completed. It is expected that the modernization projects, which total some $10 billion, will be finalized within the next five years. The Undersecretariat for the Defence Industry (SSM) will implement a project to modernize seven C-130 Hercules transport planes and to purchase the first batches planned of a total of 145 attack helicopter and 1,000 main battle tanks this year. /All papers/
 LOAN APPROVED FOR SEISMIC RESEARCH SHIPThe State Planning Organization (DPT) and the Supreme Planning Board have approved the provision of loan for the fully-equipped Mining Exploration Institute (MTA) seismic research ship. The MTA general directorate is reported to have completed preparations for the ship's international construction bid. MTA will construct the ship with $25 million in foreign loan. The ship will conduct three-dimensional seismic research into fault line movements and will be able to detect underwater land movement. /All papers/
 CEM IN BAKUForeign Minister Ismail Cem went to Baku yesterday. At a press conference he held at Baku Airport, Cem said he would mainly be discussing bilateral economic relations during his visit. He explained how pleased he was to be in Azerbaijan, a 'friendly and fraternal nation' and said that he would work to improve the already good relations between the two countries. /All papers/
 NORWAY REMOVES EMBARGO FOR THE SALE OF PENGUIN MISSILESNorway has lifted the embargo for the sale of 'Penguin missiles' which it has been imposing on Turkey for many years. The removal of the embargo has been viewed as an important 'gesture' prior to Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit's visit to Norway to begin on June 4. /Sabah/
 FUAT MIRAS AGAIN CHAIRMAN OF TOBBFuat Miras has been re-elected the Chairman of the Turkish Union of Chambers and Commodity Exchanges (TOBB). Miras' rival, the Chairman of the Istanbul Chamber of Trade (ITO), Mehmet Yildirim, has managed to receive 75 votes while Miras obtained 133 votes during the election. /Star/
 EXPORTS OF IRON AND METAL INCREASEThe highest increase in exports was in the iron and metal sector during the January-April period of this year in Turkey. The exports totalled $1.1 billion with the 23.6 % increase. According to Exporters' Union's data, the increase of exports in the cement and soil products sectors was 17.2 % amounting to $305 million. /Star/
 TURKISH BOAT SINKSA Turkish boat sank on the high seas of Italy two days ago. A Croatian ship rescued the nine Turkish crew on the boat. The Turkish crew will arrive in Turkey by plane today. /Star/
 TURKEY PLEASED BY WITHDRAWAL OF ISRAELI FORCESAccording to a statement by the Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Turkey was pleased by the withdrawal of Israel forces from South Lebanon. The statement described this as a big step on the end to peace and added that Turkey hoped that it would mean an end to the incidents and deaths of recent years. /Turkish Daily News/
 SURPRISING DEVELOPMENT CONCERNING NUCLEAR POWER STATIONThe US Westinghouse firm has stated that if a letter of intent is extended, they could begin to construct the nuclear power station without waiting for the Treasury's loan guarantee. The Akkuyu Nuclear Power Station Project has been halted because the Treasury has not extended the loan guarantee. /Turkiye/
 PROSTHESIS FOR VICTIMS OF EARTHQUAKEThe 'Physicians for Peace', a charity group in the US, has sent a health team to Turkey for the rehabilitation of the victims of the earthquake which occured in Turkey last year. Ten doctors in the team will initially undertake medical consultations and will present prosthesis for the people wounded during the earthquake. /Turkiye/
 CONSTITUTIONAL COURT PRESIDENCY ELECTIONS TO BE HELDIt is expected that the elections for the Presidency of Constitutional Court, recently vacated by President Ahmet Necdet Sezer, will be held in the following week. In addition to Ali Huner, the President of the Court of Jurisdictional Disputes, Fulya Kantarcioglu, Yalcin Acargun and Mustafa Bumin are among the possible candidates. /All papers/
 JOINT OPERATION BY THE US AND TURKEY10.5 kilos of narcotics, amounting to 20 billion TL were seized during an operation held by the Turkish and American security forces yesterday. It was uncovered that these narcotics, which were brought to Turkey from Iran, were to be sent to the US by a gang, led by Perviz Muhammet Nejat. Istanbul's Narcotics Police captured Saliha Aydin on 25 May at the Ataturk Airport. /Cumhuriyet/
 RAPPROCHEMENT BETWEEN TURKEY AND GREECEThe Turkish and Greek Mayors of the cities bordering the Aegean, delivered a speech at the First Turco-Greek Journalists' Meeting on the Rhodes Island in Greece, stating that the support of the mass-media was necessary so that the friendship between the two countries could improve and be permanent. Fuat Akdogan, the Mayor of Kusadasi, made a speech on the 'Role of Mass-Media in the Improvement of Relations from the Local Administration's Point of View' and said, "A 50% reduction will be made in the harbour services for those who come from the Samos Island. We have also some problems concerning the environment. The media should support these initiatives". /Cumhuriyet/
 SABIHA GOKCEN AIRPORT TO BE OPENED IN 2001Minister of National Defence, Sabahattin Cakmakoglu, stated that Sabiha Gokcen Airport in Pendik will have a capacity of 3 million passengers and 90,000 cargos. The management of this airport, the construction of which will cost 300 million dollars, will be carried out by the Airport Management and Aviation Industries' Joint Stock Company, which was established by the cooperation between the Foundation of Strengthening the Turkish Armed Forces, TUSAS, the Turkish Aviation Organization, Havelsan and Aselsan under the leadership of the Defence Industry Undersecretariat. /Milliyet/
 EXPO 2000 FAIR IN GERMANYExpo 2000 Fair, the preparations of which have been continuing for many years, will be opened on 1 June in Hannover, Germany. This fair will be attended by 190 countries and the main item of this fair is man-nature-technics. Expo 2000 Fair is expected to be toured by nearly 40 million visitors and will stay open until 31 October. Turkey will attend this fair with a stand located on an area of 2,000 square meters. This stand will promote Turkey with its historical and touristic characteristics. /Hurriyet/
 MOBILE HEALTH SYSTEM TO BE ESTABLISHEDHealth Minister Osman Durmus stated during a visit to Nevsehir's Urgup State Hospital that the Health Ministry was aiming to establish a mobile health system equipped with 1,000 ambulances for Turkey's villages. Durmus added that 160 new ambulances and 20 other vehicles would be the first step in establishing the program. /All papers/
 ISKIT WARNS AGAINST PROVOCATIONS AT EURO 2000Turkey's Ambassador to Brussels, Temel Iskit, in a written statement warned Turkish football fans against possible provocations during the 11th European Football Championship, known as Euro 2000, and calling on them to behave rationally in the face of such provocations. /All papers/
 FROM THE COLUMNS...FROM THE COLUMNS...FROM THE COLUMNS...
 CAPITAL PUNISHMENT BY SEMIH IDIZ (STAR)Columnist Semih Idiz writes on the capital punishment and how it obstructs justice. A summary of his column is as folows:
"Some may view what I am going to say as strange, since the 'eye for an eye, tooth for a tooth' approach is widely accepted in our country. However, the decision of Belgium not to extradite Fehriye Erdal who is one of the suspects in the murder of Ozdemir Sabanci and his two friends has underlined an important fact once more.
Even if it has not been carried out for years, the fact that it exists in the Turkish Penal Code, capital punishment continues to obstruct the manifestation of justice in Turkey. Thus the the basis of fairness is being ignored. The fundamental rights of the victims are not taken into account. Some may repeat the accusation of 'double standards' and say that how can they not extradite a girl suspected of murder and this may seem reasonable to others.
However, during the fight to overcome terrorism the main arguement we used against the accusations of human rights violations was the 'superiority of law', that is to say laws are laws and they are enforced. That is what Belgium is doing today. Even though the Belgian court knew all aspects of the cruel murder Erdal was a part of, it had only one thing to say and that was, "If there is capital punishment in the laws of the country asking for extradition, and the crime for which the suspect will be tried envisages such a punishment, then he or she cannot be extradited to that country." These are the laws and they are being carried out.
In other words, even if the Belgian judge believed that she was a cold blooded murderer and a terrorist and had to be extradited he cannot do this. Since the laws of the country he is in do not permit it. If the judge had decided that she could be extradited, a higher court would cancel this decision as the laws of the country and the principle of 'superiority of law' necessitates it.
Heowever, the decision given according to the laws of the country does not show that justice has been carried out. The brother of the industrialist Ozdemir Sabanci, a victim in the case, also is aware of the fact. Therefore he does not accuse Belgium but the Turkish Grand National Assembly (TGNA) which has not abolished capital punisment as yet. We have to listen to him as the victim is his brother and he is the one who would like to see justice be done.
Justice is bringing the suspects back to the country to give an account of their deeds to the families of the victims and the public. They may then be sentenced to life imprisonment including their isolation from the society through all their lives. Thus the society will protect itself from such people.
There cannot be a more severe punishment than this. As a country which has set itself an aim, we are at a crossroads concerning capital punishment. Either we will follow the policy of 'eye for an eye, tooth for a tooth' and see the drawbacks of it or evaluate the principle of justice from a higher level. The two don't go together."
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