|Monday, 1 June 2020|
Turkish Press Review, 01-01-17
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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...
 LEADERS DISCUSS THE NATIONAL PROGRAMLeaders of the coalition government discussed the National Program yesterday, and decided to wait for the position the European Parliament. The EP did not approve the 'Framework Agreement'. If the Framework Agreement, expected to be on the European Parliament agenda at the end of February, becomes clear and the financial assistance for Turkey is approved, the Council of Ministers will discuss the National Program in March.
Deputy Prime Minister Husamettin Ozkan, Foreign Minister Ismail Cem, State Minister Sukru Sina Gurel, Secretary General for EU Affairs Ambassador, Volkan Vural and the Foreign Ministry Undersecretary Faruk Logoglu also attended the 'National Program Summit' which lasted three hours yesterday. During the summit, Vural presented the National Draft Program prepared in line with the leaders' directives given on December 12, 2000. /Milliyet/
 VERHEUGEN: 'DO NOT MISS THE TRAIN'The EU Commissioner responsible for enlargement, Gunter Verheugen, said the enlargement process of the EU was like a train. He added: "The train is still waiting for Turkey at the station". He noted that this train would be an express train during Sweden's EU Term-Presidency. He pointed out that Turkey should not miss the train. Verheugen stated that the European Parliament should support Turkey through financial assistance. He added that the EU would make political reforms a priority in the National Program prepared by Ankara. /Milliyet/
 HONORARY DOCTORATE TO TRNC PRESIDENT DENKTASOsmangazi University presented an honorary doctorate to Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) President Rauf Denktas. Delivering a speech at the ceremony, Denktas said, "The European countries demand Turkey give up Cyprus in order to become a full EU member. However, after Turkey gives up Cyprus, the European countries will demand more sacrifices and still not let Turkey in." /Cumhuriyet/
 ECHR TRIAL ON WELFARE PARTY HELDThe European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) trial regarding the Welfare Party (closed by the Turkish Constitutional Court) was held yesterday. The Court is expected to make a decision on the issue in three months. At the trial, the lawyer for the Turkish government Ergun Ozbudun said secularism is one of the indispensable elements of a democracy. He added, "The Welfare Party violated the Constitution of the Republic of Turkey as they supported and propagandized the radical fundamentalist views. The lawyer for the Welfare Party, Laurent Hincker said a political party could not be shut down within a democratic system. He argued that it was untrue to claim the Welfare Party demands and works for a fundamentalist system. /Cumhuriyet/
 ISRAELI FOREIGN MINISTER BEN AMI TO VISIT TURKEYIsraeli Minister of Foreign Affairs, Sholomo Ben Ami will visit Turkey to inform Turkish officials on the latest developments in the Middle East. He is expected to arrive in Ankara on Thursday. Meeting with Minister of Foreign Affairs Ismail Cem, Ben Ami is expected to visit former President Suleyman Demirel. /Cumhuriyet/
 TURKEY OBJECTS TO ECHRIt was reported Turkey has objected to the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) decision to hold the Ocalan trial in Grand Chamber. ECHR is expected to make a decision on Turkey's objection next Tuesday. /Cumhuriyet/
 CROATIAN ADMIRAL VISITS TURKEYCommander of the Croatian Navy, Vice-Admiral Vid Stipetic, has come to Turkey as the official guest of his Turkish counterpart, Adm.Ilhami Erdil, the Anatolia News Agency reported yesterday. After the Admiral signed the visitor's book at Naval Command Headquarters, Adm.Erdil said Stipetic would be staying in Turkey until January 19. /Turkish Daily News/
 YUCELEN VISITS HUMAN RIGHTS COMMISSIONState Minister Rustu Kazim Yucelen visited Huseyin Akgul, Chairman of the parliamentary Human Rights Investigation Commission, the Anatolia News Agency reported yesterday. Stating that there was a continuous exchange of information between the Ministry and the Human Rights Commission, Yucelen said Akgul was to brief him on the current agenda of the Human Rights Executive Board and Human Rights Directorate. /Turkish Daily News/
 BIRDAL ELECTED FIDH VICE-PRESIDENTAkin Birdal, the former chairman of the Human Rights Association, (IHD) was elected as the deputy chairman for the second time to the Paris-based Federation of International Human Rights (FIDH); an umbrella organization for human rights organizations from 127 different countries. /All papers/
 BUSINESSMAN SEN DEFENDS TURKEY IN FRANCEThe French citizen of Turkish origin, businessman, Umit Sen defends Turkey in France against the so-called Armenian genocide bill. Sen sent a 14-page report on the so-called Armenian genocide, expressing historical facts and proving the Armenians claims wrong. Sen mentioned the genocides France carried out in the past in his report and asked, "Why does France not pass a law on the Algerian mass-murder between 1954-1962?" /Hurriyet/
 ECEVIT'S MESSAGE ON THE SO-CALLED ARMENIAN GENOCIDE BILLPrime Minister Bulent Ecevit warned France about the negative consequences stemming from the possible approval of the so-called Armenian genocide bill. Ecevit said, "Turkey will not be responsible for the results that will seriously damage bilateral relations between the two countries. " Addressing France, Ecevit said, "Don't let our relations be damaged." /Hurriyet/
 ROBERTSON DEFENDS TURKEY IN ARMENIAWhile visiting Armenia, NATO Secretary General George Robertson told Foreign Minister Vradan Oskanyan that Turkey's policies against Armenia were not aggressive but constructive. Robertson said, "NATO cannot be a mediator to solve the problems between Armenia and Turkey. There are necessary platforms for you to discuss the problems and improve relations. I know Turkey well. I can gurantee Turkey does not have any aggressive policy regarding Armenia." /Hurriyet/
 SO-CALLED ARMENIAN GENOCIDE AGAIN ON THE AGENDA IN THE USThe 'So-Called Armenian Genocide Resolution' is on the agenda of Maryland's (US) House of the Representatives. Officials from the Assembly of the Turkish-American Associations (ATAA) based in Washington have reportedly rolled up their sleeves to work against the approval of the bill. /Turkiye/
 ENERGY COOPERATION WITH ATHENSThe INOGATE (Interstate Oil and Gas Transport to Europe) project, established through a Turkey-Greece cooperation will begin soon. The project will transfer the energy sources of Central Asia to Europe with the help of the two countries as a part of the EU Commission. The Turkish and Greek Foreign Ministry bureaucrats will meet today to discuss details of the INOGATE project. Parallel to the advice of the European Commission, a bureau was established in Ankara to harmonize the project. After completing the INOGATE project, decisions on the transfer of the energy and natural gas sources in the Central Asia will be taken. INOGATE is a multilateral cooperation program developed by the EU Commission to ease the tranfer of the energy sources to Europe. /Cumhuriyet/
 EP DISCUSSES LIFESAVING PRISON OPERATIONSThe European Parliament decided to discuss the draft bills proposed by certain political groups on the lifesaving operations carried out in Turkey in an emergency case session. The bills, presented by different political groups, constituted a common text to be discussed. Those groups criticizes the operations because of the deaths. /Cumhuriyet/
 FOREIGN ECONOMY POLICIES TO BE DISCUSSEDThe Foreign Economic Relations Council, representatives of profession associations and the government, will meet to discuss foreign economic policies and the deficiencies in those policies. Minister of State Tunca Toskay and Minister of Foreign Affairs Ismail Cem are expected to attend the meeting. /Cumhuriyet/
 COTTARELLI MEETS WITH BAYARIMF Turkey Desk Chief Carlo Cottarelli met with the Chairman of the Privatization Board, Ugur Bayar. Before the meeting, Cottarelli said, "The meetings are going well. We will leave Turkey in a few days after completing our meetings." It was reported that Cottarelli and Bayar discussed the 2001 privatization program. /Cumhuriyet/
 NEW POWER STATIONS TO BE ESTABLISHEDThe Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources has announced there are new projects to establish more power stations including 17 wind energy, 7 hydroelectric, 4 natural gas and one geothermal station. The Treasury guaranteed the project. /Cumhuriyet/
 KOC AND ENKA OPEN RAMSTORE IN MOSCOWKoc and Enka will open the biggest Ramstore in Moscow tomorrow. Koc Group Executive Coucil Chairman Rahmi Koc, Enka Holding Executive Council Chairman Sarik Tara, Ambassador Nabi Sensoy and Moscow Mayor Yuri Lujkov will attend the opening ceremony. /Hurriyet/
 GUARANTEE IN FOREIGN EXCHANGE FOR FOREIGNERSThe initiatives to ensure the guarantee of foreign credits given to banks are almost completed. Consensus has been reached during meetings between the IMF and the Banking Regulation and Supervision Board (BDDK) and an announcement will be made concerning the 'letter of comfort' guarantee within the week. A protocol signed between the Treasury and the BDDK will declare that funds and sources of the foreign banks and financial institutions in Turkey will be under the full guarantee of the BDDK. /Milliyet/
 DEMIRALP: "THE PROGRAM IS GOING WELL"Treasury Undersecretary Selcuk Demiralp stated that everything was going well under the program signed with the IMF and that there was no trouble. Demiralp noted that during meetings held with the IMF officials, banking, privatization and structural reforms were the main topics of discussion. /Aksam/
 HUGE INVESTMENT FROM ENKAThe foundation for the Izmir Aliaga Natural Gas Power Station will be laid during a ceremony to be held on January 20. The power station will be constructed through an investment of $2.2 billion in a partnership between the US InterGen and Turkish Enka Holding. /Turkiye/
 BIDDINGS OF BOTASThe Pipeline Transportation Company (BOTAS) has signed agreements with the companies which won the tenders of the four loop and natural gas pipeline projects with a projected cost of $64 million. The companies are: Atilla Dogan, Fernas, Max Strexer and STFA. /Turkiye/
 NEW INVESTMENT PROJECTSThe General Director of the Railways, Harbours and Airways, Dr.Ihsan Gulay said that four new investment projects would be implemented within the framework of the 'Build-Operate-Transfer' model and foreign financial sources. In a statement, Gulay said that Turkey was a bridge between Europe, Asia and the Middle East. He added that Turkey played an important role within the combined transportation network. /Turkiye/
 HALIL MUTLU: MOST SUCCESSFUL SPORTSMAN IN THE WORLDNational weight-lifter and the Olympics Champion Halil Mutlu, was awarded the title of the world's most successful sportsman yesterday during a ceremony held in the Royal Albert Hall in London. /Aksam/
 FROM THE COLUMNS...FROM THE COLUMNS...FROM THE COLUMNS...
 WHILING AWAY TIME WITH LOCAL NEWS BY SAMI KOHEN (MILLIYET)Columnist Sami Kohen writes on the expected adoption of the so-called Armenian Genocide law by the French National Assembly. A summary of his column is as follows:
"It is almost certain that tommorow the French National Assembly will approve a bill officially recognizing the 1915 Armenian genocide. Turkish officials in Ankara seem to expect this result. It is widely accepted that recent messages conveyed to Paris will not change the situation.
Thus France, knowing full well Turkey's sensitivity on the issue, will have passed a law, (not a resolution) recognizing the claims of Armenians on the so-called genocide. The grave mistake in this situation is the French Government's lack of opposition to such a trend in parliament. In fact, its passive stance encourages the adoption of such a law.
It would be highly irrational to expect the Jospin Government, which until now, has not shown any will to prevent the bill, to apply to the Constitutional Court for a cancellation. France will have to live under the shadow of this law.
There are many reasons leading France down this path. Among the main factors are the intense campaign by the strong Armenian lobby in France just before elections, the re-election concerns of some parliamentarians, and the public's prejudice regarding Turkey. We have to add that some French genuinely believe Armenians were subjected to genocide in 1915 and, as the daily "Le Monde' recently wrote, consider it a civic duty to bring the facts into the open.
However, all these reasons do not give the French National Assembly the right to accept Armenian claims as truth and brand Turkey as a criminal...Unfortunately, Turkey does not have the opportunity to render the bill ineffective, the bill will go into force due to the approving silence of the French Government. Opposition to this law will be considered a crime, a violation of law. The parliaments of other countries, who are preparing to adopt similar decisions, will use France as an example. In short, Turkey will be faced with great troubles on the issue...
It is apparent that Turkey is to blame for letting the matter develop into the present situation. Ankara did not do what it needed in a timely manner. One of the Turkish deputies, Bulent Akarcali, in France to lobby on the issue, said delegations should have been sent to enlighten the French on the issue long before. Various Turkish institutions should have acted. Universities such as Galatasaray should have worked on the subject. Turkish businessmen and historians, all should have worked together...The Government should have launched initiatives energetically in the French National Assembly, as it did when a similar resolution came to floor of the US House of Representatives floor.
As Akarcali has said, if Turkey's agenda is filled with local news, such incidents occur and the Government must decide how to react to the French decision. There is a catalogue covering various sanctions. Turkey can take economic measures, exclude French firms from entering tenders, and reduce imports from France or, can withdraw its Ambassador to Paris for a time.
However, it has to consider that every measure can bring a counter measures or lead to reactions which may be detrimental to Turkey. In the words of Turkish officials, if the steps taken are not carefully calculated, Turkey may be faced with a more dangerous situation than the decision of the French National Assembly."
 FRANCE DON'T BE IGNORANT BY OZDEMIR INCE (HURRIYET)Columnist Ozdemir Ince writes on the impending discussion of the so-called Armenian genocide by the French National Assembly. A summary of his column is as follows:
"The Great French writer Emile Zola said 'I accuse' while defending Alfred Dreyfus, a French soldier of Jewish origin, who was subjected to injustice. I also rebel against injustice and accuse: France is sabotaging international peace, exploiting history and provoking animosities.
The French National Assembly Foreign Relations Committee has accepted the bill on the so-called Armenian genocide. At the meeting held on 10 January, a majority of the political group representatives adopted a stance in favour of the acceptance of the bill. This bill will be debated in the plenary session of the French National Assembly on 18 January. If it is adopted, the sentence, 'France recognizes the genocide Armenians were subjected to' will become the official view of the French people who know what national honour means.
Vote hunting, simple-minded and inconscientious politicians while attacking Turkey's honour are, in fact, damaging French honour. These ignorant, and ambitious politicians are damaging my belief in democracy. The consequences mean that democracy can change facts and rewrite history as it wants to by counting fingers. Those humiliating democracy may lose their status as representatives at the of this term. However, if there are 60 just members among them who dare to apply to the Constitutional Court for cancellation of the bill, French honour can be saved.
How can a country like France, who has not faced her own history and be found innocent, act in such an impudent manner? Is it because she is strong? Only 40-50 years ago France committed genocide in Algeria as goes the accepted accounts of the French generals. France left their issue to be judged by the historians, but is expecting Turkey to be judged by her vote-hunters.
France who dressed Armenians in French uniforms in Adana, Mersin, Urfa, Hatay and Gaziantep and left Turks to be massacred by the Legion made up of Armenians, is trying to judge Turkey. As stated in the book of Luke in the Bible, "Judge not, lest ye be judged".
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