|Thursday, 4 June 2020|
Turkish Press Review, 02-05-17
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From: Turkish Directorate General of Press and Information <http://www.byegm.gov.tr><LINK href="http://www.byegm.gov.tr_yayinlarimiz_chr_pics_css/tpr.css" rel=STYLESHEET type=text/css> <map name="FPMap1"> </map> <map name="FPMap1"></map> Press & Information Turkish Press Summary of the political and economic news in the Turkish press this morning
 ECEVIT TO VISIT AFGHANISTAN AND PAKISTANPrime Minister Bulent Ecevit is expected to visit Afghanistan and Pakistan on May 23-25. During his trip to Pakistan, Ecevit is set to participate in bilateral talks with various groups and to meet with Pakistani President Gen. Pervez Muserref. Following that visit, Ecevit is to proceed to Afghanistan to have talks with interim government Prime Minister Hamid Karzai in the capital Kabul. /Radikal/
 YILMAZ: “THE GOVERNMENT CONTINUES TO RUN SMOOTHLY”Appearing on CNN Turk yesterday, Motherland Party (ANAP) leader Mesut Yilmaz denied that the government’s smooth functioning was being impaired in any way by Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit’s illness. “I spoke with him on the phone the other day,” he said. “He told me he was remaining at home to let his back recover but that he always remained reachable. I don’t think that the government’s work has at all been hindered by Mr. Ecevit’s illness. In fact, after his recovery I believe Ecevit will be in even better shape to continue his work at the Prime Ministry.” /Sabah/
 ANNAN: “WE CAN MAKE SUBSTANTIAL PROGRESS BY THE END OF JUNE”UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan’s three-day visit to Cyprus ended yesterday. He expressed cautious optimism in the future of talks between the two parties on the island, the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) and the Greek Cypriot administration. In a press conference at Larnaka Airport yesterday, Annan stated that substantial progress could be made by the end of June. “I’m optimistic that a June deadline for resolving core issues could still be met,” said Annan. “Despite their difference on substance and on the time frame, I am still convinced that between now and the end of June they can resolve all the core issues provided they go about their task decisively and with the necessary political will.” Although all the signs to date have indicated that the peace negotiations are in trouble, Annan conveyed the message that he believed the two leaders of the island, Rauf Denktas and Glafcos Clerides, would increase their efforts towards finding a permanent solution. “At the end of June we will make an assessment how far we have cracked the core issues,” said Annan. “I am not saying a signed and sealed agreement but at least they will have resolved the core issues by June." /Cumhuriyet/
 KARAKOYUNLU: “RTUK LAW IS CONGRUENT WITH COPENHAGEN CRITERIA”State Minister Yilmaz Karakoyunlu yesterday met with European Commission representative Karen Fogg to brief her on Turkey’s new law on the Supreme Board of Radio and Television (RTUK). Karakoyunlu said that he laid out for her how the new RTUK brodcasting law did not violate Turkey’s aim to fulfill the Copenhagen criteria, contrary to assertions by EU enlargement spokesman Jean-Christophe Filaris. Fogg, however, demurred, arguing that the new law was not in line with Turkey’s commitments towards EU accession. /Millyet/
 SECURITY DIRECTORATE GENERAL DRAWS UP LIST OF TERRORISTSThe Interpol liason office of Turkey’s Directorate General of Security has prepared a new list of terrorists which it says are taking shelter in Europe. The lists includes major PKK terrorist figures such as Cemil Bayik, Riza Altun, Osman Ocalan and Halil Atac, 21 DHKP-C terrorists as well as Fehriye Erdal, a fugitive in the murder of Istanbul businessman Ozdemir Sabanci. Turkey is requesting immediate extradition of these terrorists in the wake of the European Union Council’s recent decision to include the PKK and DHKP-C on its revised list of terrorist organizations. /Cumhuriyet/
 TURKEY, AUSTRIA SIGN ACCORD TO FIGHT ORGANIZED CRIMESTurkey and Austria signed an accord yesterday to cooperate in the fighting against illegal migration, human trafficking, extremist political movements, organized crime and drug smuggling. Turkish Foreign Minister Rustu Kazim Yucelen and his Austrian counterpart Ernst Strasser signed the agreement. /Cumhuriyet/
 AMNESTY BILL TO BE DISCUSSED NEXT WEEKDiscussion on the amnesty bill which President Ahmet Necdet Sezer sent back to Parliament for reconsideration began yesterday. Speaking of the last such amnesty law, Justice Minister Hikmet Sami Turk said, “That law put 730 inmates back on the streets who then committed new crimes and had to be locked up again.” He predicted that some 5,000 prisoners would be released under the new law. However, when individual articles of the bill were up for discussion a quorum was lacking, and so further discussions have been scheduled for next week. /Sabah/
 LABOR DELEGATION RETURNS FROM MIDEAST VISITA peace delegation made up of representatives from Turkey’s Confederation of Revolutionary Workers’ Trade Unions (DISK), Confederation of Public Workers’ Trade Unions (KESK) and Confederation of Trade Unions (Hak-Is) returned to the country yesterday after a five-day visit to the Palestinian territories and Israel. In a press conference upon arriving at Ataturk Airport in Istanbul, the members of the delegation briefed journalists on recent developments in the region, stating that the Palestinian were trying to survive under very difficult conditions. The delegation had met this week with Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat and Israeli Prime Minister Shimon Peres to get information on the latest developments. /Cumhuriyet/
 IMF DOESN’T SEE HEALTH CONCERNS HINDERING ECONOMIC PROGRAMThe International Monetary Fund weighed in yesterday on concerns about the health of Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit, saying that the situation was something to keep an eye on but it had no direct bearing on the progress of Turkey’s economic program. Speaking at a press conference at Washington’s IMF headquarters, spokesman Tom Dawson said that everyone at the Fund of course hoped for Ecevit’s quick recovery and continued good health. But, he added, the prime minister’s health is unconnected with the nation’s economic condition, which in the IMF’s view is progressing rather well. /Hurriyet/
 STATE TO ALLOCATE 150 TLN IN CONSTRUCTION SECTOR CREDITSState Minister Faruk Bal told construction sector representatives in Istanbul yesterday that the government had 150 trillion TL in credits ready to help the sector. Bal, the state minister responsible for the Mass Housing and Real Estate Agency, told the representatives that the credits would primarily be allocated for cooperative companies and municipal enterprises serving the nation’s housing sector. Bal noted that the framework regulation laying out conditions for the allotment of the credit had been approved by the Cabinet, adding that notification of the measures would appear in the Official Gazette today or tomorrow. /Zaman/
 TURKISH COMPANIES ATTEND MERRILL LYNCH CONFERENCETwo Turkish banks and a holding company attended a developing markets conference this week at the invitation of its organizer, leading investment bank Merrill Lynch. The gathering in Miami, Florida brought together some 70 companies from sectors such as banking, technology, retail, media, and mineral and steel production. Representing Turkey at the meeting were Is Bank, Akbank and Dogan Holding. The companies told Merrill Lynch representatives about their own financial performance, as well as how Turkey is working to attract more foreign capital and participation in the Istanbul Stock Exchange (IMKB). In addition, they gave briefings on the nation’s improved economy and structural reforms. Merrill Lynch Turkey director Gamze Alpar told the companies’ representatives that foreign investors were pleased with Turkey’s recent economic recovery but also stressed the importance of giving regular, impartial performance reports to investors./Milliyet/
 FROM THE COLUMNS…FROM THE COLUMNS…FROM THE COLUMNS…
 CYPRUS AND FOREIGN POLICY BY YILMAZ OZTUNA (TURKIYE)Columnist Yilmaz Oztuna comments on Kofi Annan’s recent visit to Cyprus and other foreign policy matters. A summary of his columns is as follows:
“UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan’s recent visit to Cyprus leapt to the top of the agenda of our foreign policy this week. What kind of concessions can we expect from Clerides? The secretary-general has made excellent use of his diplomatic skills, and the message that he gave was very clear: Find a solution on the main problems before the end of June. The secretary-general also said that Cyprus Envoy Alvaro de Soto would help the negotiations process and that he himself would keep an eye on the issue from New York. Annan also conveyed the views of the US and the European Union. The attention of both Ankara and Greece is focused on Cyprus.
We are participating in a major way with the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) established by the UN in Afghanistan. A Turkish major general is to command the ISAF as it provides security around Kabul.
This President Ahmet Necdet Sezer also met with his Romanian and Bulgarian counterparts in Cesme. Turkey signed a useful security agreement with the two Balkan states, which are preparing to enter NATO.
The NATO foreign ministers met in Reykjavik, Iceland this week. Russia was also represented and approached by NATO. At the same time, Foreign Minister Ismail Cem made contacts with his Azerbaijani and Armenian counterparts at the sideliners of the meeting.
Perhaps this is unconnected with foreign policy, but we shouldn’t forget the visit of International Monetary Fund Turkey Desk Chief Juha Kahkonnen to Turkey. His Predecessor Carlo Cotaralli was unable to foresee our large economic crisis. He defended to the decision to peg the lira to the dollar, in the end Turkey suffered. We trust Kemal Dervis. We now know that as long as we are dependent on the IMF, Turkey will remain an underdeveloped country.”
 WAS HE SUCCESSFUL? BY SAMI KOHEN (MILLIYET)Columnist Sami Kohen comments on the recent visit of UN Secretary- General Kofi Annan to Cyprus. A summary of his columns is as follows:
“After UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan’s recent visit to Cyprus, the first question which comes to mind is, was he successful? To evaluate this, we have to remember his words and attitude before visiting the island. In his own view, he came to the island to encourage both sides and to speed up the blocked negotiations. Annan told observers not to expect a miracle from him, and that he didn’t have any magic wand.
What happened? With Annan’s efforts, the obstacles in the dialogues have been removed. Both sides have agreed to continue the negotiations process with new approaches. At first glance this could be seen as a small success, but it is an important step on the Cyprus issue. It would be wrong to say that Annan returned from the island empty-handed.
The secretary-general yesterday identified two sticking points, namely the hoped-for deadline and how the issues are approached and defined.
Annan made a fierce effort, but he was unable to get an answer from Turkish Cypriot President Denktas. In this situation, it is clear that the talks will continue after the June deadline. It’s not even assured that even over a longer period the two sides could reach an agreement.
How do the sides differ in framing the issue? For Denktas the main issue is sovereignty. Which means that the Turkish side first wants to solve this problem and then to move on to the others. For his part, Greek Cypriot leader Clerides says the opposite. This is the stalemate that has existed for four months. This is clearly why the negotiations are blocked. Annan tried to got the negotiations going by telling the two sides to discuss both the problem of sovereignty and ‘specific problems’ together. Can Annan’s efforts bring forth a change on the island? Almost every method imaginable has been used on the island to find a solution. Annan’s method is nothing new.”
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