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Turkish Press Review, 02-07-18
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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
18.07.2002DERVIS VISITS THE REPUBLICAN PEOPLE'S PARTY BY DERYA SAZAK (MILLIYET)
 ECEVIT: "WE WANT CLOSE DIALOGUE WITH THE US IN CASE OF AN OPERATION AGAINST IRAQ"Appearing on television yesterday, Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit stated that the US seems to be determined to undertake a military operation against Iraq. Ecevit also said that Turkey would like to have a close dialogue with the US in case of such an operation. "We told the US officials that there was no need for an operation, and that a solution could be found through other means," Ecevit added. Ecevit stressed that Turkey has very good relations with the US and would like to continue them. 'We urged the US to keep up a close dialogue with Turkey, because Iraq is our neighbor and we have good relations with it,' said Ecevit. /Hurriyet/
 WOLFOWITZ MEETS WITH FOREIGN MINISTRY OFFICIALSA visiting US delegation headed by Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz along with Deputy Secretary of State Marc Grossman and Commander in Chief of US European Forces Gen. Joseph Ralston yesterday held a series of meetings with Foreign Minister Sukru Sina Gurel and Undersecretary Ugur Ziyal. The Turkish officials told the delegation that Turkey was opposed to the partition of Iraq and to the formation of a Kurdish state in northern Iraq. The officials also said that Turkey didn't want any surprises concerning an operation in Iraq, and that it would be better to inform Turkey before taking any steps. Also discussed during the meeting at the Foreign Ministry were the European Security and Defense Policy (ESDP), the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) in Afghanistan, the Cyprus issue and the European Union. For his part, Wolfowitz told reporters before his departure that the final decision on the Iraqi issue would be made by US President George W. Bush. /Hurriyet/
 CEM, OZKAN, AND DERVIS DISCUSS NEW FORMATIONThree leaders of a currently emerging political formation met yesterday to discuss Turkey's political situation. Former Deputy Prime Minister Husamettin Ozkan, former Foreign Minister Ismail Cem, and still-serving Economy Minister Kemal Dervis met in advance of the new party's projected official formation next week. The three decided that for the benefit of the Turkish economy, Dervis wouldn't be listed among the party's founding members, but that he would run in upcoming elections to be a deputy from Istanbul. "We looked at current political developments and discussed ways to improve our country," said Cem after the meeting. "Avoiding haste which could lead to mistakes is important," added Dervis. "We're supporting each other and working to find common solutions." /Sabah/
 CEM TRAVELS IN LEADUP TO NEW FORMATIONFormer Foreign Minister Ismail Cem, the leader of the new political formation due to be officially established next week, is beginning to make visits outside the capital in advance of that establishment. Today he is due to visit Kayseri, where his constituency is. He is also expected to participate in regional meetings in Izmir and Istanbul. In addition, ex- Democratic Left Party deputies attached to Cem and Former Deputy Prime Minister Husamettin Ozkan are intensifying their efforts to make the necessary preparations before Monday, when the new party is to be founded. A group of deputies is still working on the program and the regulations for the new party. /Cumhuriyet/
 THREE MORE RESIGNATIONS FROM THE DSPResignations from the Democratic Left Party (DSP) continued yesterday, when three more deputies left the party. Including these defections, the party now has 66 deputies, and continued its status as the fourth-largest party in Parliament. Meanwhile, the number of deputies in the coalition parties' government has fallen to 272. /Hurriyet/
 PARTIES HOLD DIFFERING VIEWS ON ELECTION DATE AND EU HARMONIZATION LAWSAlthough the coalition government leaders agreed at their last meeting to hold elections on Nov. 3, the parties in Parliament have conflicting views as to whether or not to decide on elections before enacting European Union accession laws. The Motherland Party (ANAP) and the Democratic Left Party (DSP) favor enacting the EU laws before deciding on elections, reasoning that it would be difficult for Parliament to work while most of the deputies travel to their respective regions to campaign. The True Path Party (DYP), on the other hand, is against debating EU laws before making a decision on elections, fearful that the resolve for elections will be lost. The DYP is calling on Parliament to reconvene next Monday and then to make a decision on elections and thereafter debate the EU laws. Members of the announced new formation are saying that their party needs three months to get ready elections, and the Felicity Party (SP) is asking that elections be held at a date later than Nov. 3, aiming to enter them under the leadership of Necmettin Erbakan, whose political ban will end at the beginning of next year. Meanwhile, the Justice and Development Party (AKP) is pushing for elections before Nov. 3. /Turkiye/
 TANTAN: "I AM NOT PART OF THE NEW FORMATION"Speaking to reporters yesterday, former Interior Minister Sadettin Tantan said that he would play no part in the new political formation currently being put together by other ex-Cabinet ministers. Tantan, who stepped down from his post last year well before the current period of instability, added that his own efforts to form a new party were nearly complete. "We are working on measures to address the public's problems," he stated. /Turkiye/
 TURK PROPOSES REVISIONS TO PENAL PROCEDURAL LAWAt a press conference yesterday, Justice Minister Hikmet Sami Turk briefed reporters about draft revisions to the Penal Procedural Law (CMUK). Turk said that the proposed revisions would make reforms to the CMUK which would accelerate judicial mechanisms and fill gaps in the legal system. The changes to the CMUK presuppose major improvements in human rights particularly with respect to custody and arrests, he said. Under the revisions arrest would become a measure of last resort and procedures regarding phone tapping, custody and length of arrest would be changed. /Cumhuriyet/
 SUPREME COUNCIL OF ELECTIONS: "AN ELECTION DECISION SHOULD BE MADE BY AUGUST"At a press conference yesterday, Tufan Algan, the chairman of the Supreme Council of Elections (YSK), evaluated the coalition government leaders' recent decision to hold elections on Nov. 3. Algan said that in order to hold the elections on the scheduled date, Parliament should convene promptly to ratify the decision to hold elections and then three-and-a-half months should be given to the YSK to carry out the necessary procedures. He said that it would be best for Parliament to declare an election decision on Aug. 1. "Revising the voters' registration lists, calling back to their offices judges and prosecutors who are currently on judicial holiday, as well as printing up the ballots would not be possible with only two months time," Alpman said. He also noted that over 40 million people were expected to vote in the coming elections. /Turkiye/
 NATIONAL EMPLOYMENT INSTITUTION RECEIVES QUALITY AWARDThe Directorate General of National Employment yesterday received an ISO 9000 Quality Award at the Labor and Social Security Ministry as part of the ministry's efforts to recognize quality achievement. Speaking at the awards ceremony, Labor and Social Security Minister Yasar Okuyan said that even though unemployment was a growing problem, the Employment Directorate General still lacked the proper legal framework. "I hope Parliament will enact this framework soon," he added. "Total quality efforts are greatly important in the state's efforts to slim down." /Aksam/
 AKP LEADER ERDOGAN'S TRIAL BEGINSThe trial of Justice and Development Party (AKP) leader Recep Tayyip Erdogan on charges of illicit accumulation of assets began yesterday at Ankara's Seventh Criminal Court of First Instance. The state is seeking five years in prison for Erdogan, who it said amassed over TL 256 billion in only three years. The AKP's leader's lawyers stated that Erdogan was currently out of Ankara and requested that the next hearing begin on Nov. 3. Presiding Judge Ibrahim Kozan, however, turned down this request, ruling that the next hearing be on Oct 3. /Milliyet/
 YALCINBAYIR: "ERDOGAN CANNOT BE BANNED FROM PARLIAMENT"Justice and Development Party (AKP) Secretary-General Ertugrul Yalcinbayir said yesterday that should the Supreme Council of Elections (YSK) rule that AKP leader Recep Tayyip Erdogan cannot serve as a deputy in Parliament, such a decision would be "illegal." Yalcinbayir charged that the YSK had issued statements on Erdogan's case before even hearing all the facts. "The YSK shouldn't decide prematurely," he stated. "If it does, then its impartiality will be cast into doubt." Turkish Penal Code (TCK) Article 312 has been revised so that the charges against Erdogan would no longer constitute a crime, Yalcinbayir contended. "If someone spoke Mr. Erdogan's words today, there would be no crime," he added. "Therefore there should be no punishment. There is no ban on Mr. Erdogan, so he should be able to serve as a deputy." /Milliyet/
 IMF AND ECONOMY OFFICIALS START WORK ON NEW LETTER OF INTENTInternational Monetary Fund Turkey Desk Chief Juha Kahkonen and economy officials yesterday started to work on Turkey's new Letter of Intent (LOI) to be presented to the IMF. The LOI includes measures which are to be discussed during the IMF's third review later this year. Currently, the second review is underway. The LOI, under which a $1.1 billion loan tranche would go to Turkey, is expected to be approved in August by the IMF Executive Board,. /Aksam/
 HISARCIKLIOGLU: "HOLDING ELECTIONS BEFORE REVISING THE LAWS WOULD BE IMPROPER"Turkish Union of Chambers (TOBB) Chairman Rifat Hisarciklioglu said yesterday that it would be improper to hold early elections before revising the Political Parties and Elections Laws, as these have vital importance for Turkey's European Union membership bid. "These laws should come into force as soon as possible to ensure the political stability," he told a press conference upon returning from Spain to push Turkey's EU bid. "The Copenhagen criteria are very important and Turkey should fulfill necessary regulations to join the EU," he added. "Turkey won't miss the EU train." Commenting on a possible US operation in Iraq, Hisarciklioglu said that TOBB didn't want instability in the region. /Sabah/
 HUNDREDS GATHER FOR FUNERAL OF TURKEY'S CHIEF RABBIHundreds of mourners, including many Turkish business and political leaders, gathered in Istanbul's main synagogue yesterday for the funeral of Turkey's chief rabbi. David Asseo, the religious leader of Turkey's 25,000-member Jewish community for the past 41 years, died Sunday at age of 88. Hundreds of people packed Istanbul's Neve Shalom Synagogue, where Asseo was ordained as chief rabbi in 1961. Among the mourners were Ecumenical Patriarch Bartolomeos, the spiritual leader of the world's Orthodox Christians, as well as Istanbul Mayor Ali Mufit Gurtuna, Culture Minister Suat Caglayan and military and business leaders. Asseo was a key leader of the Jewish community who over the years met with Turkish presidents, prime ministers and other important figures and repeatedly called for understanding and tolerance among religions in this overwhelmingly Muslim nation. After the service, Asseo was buried at the Ulus Jewish Cemetery in Istanbul. /All Papers/
 KILIC CHOSEN AD GROUP'S WORLD SECRETARY GENERALPinar Kilic, a Turkish advertising executive based in Istanbul, was unanimously chosen world secretary general of the International Association of Advertisers at the group's most recent world general council. Kilic has been the IAA's world deputy chairwoman responsible for Europe for the last five years. She is also the founder of the IAA's Turkey Department. /Aksam/
 FROM THE COLUMNS...FROM THE COLUMNS...FROM THE COLUMNS...
 TURKEY DIFFERS FROM THE US ON IRAQ BY SAMI KOHEN (MILLIYET)Columnist Sami Kohen writes on US Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz's visit to Turkey and US views on the Iraq issue. A summary of his column is as follows:
"US Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz repeated during his visit to Turkey that the US wanted to learn Turkish views on Iraq. When asked how much the views of Turkish politicians and military leaders would influence a decision by President Bush on a military operation against Iraq, he said that he came to Turkey to learn the views of Turkey and to convey them to President Bush. He added that Turkey's views were important for the US and that they had no aim other than learning these views. 'Notwithstanding certain differences of opinion, there is a broad agreement that the foundation of a democratic Iraq would be in Turkey's best interests. Certainly, if a decision is taken or when it is taken, Turkey will determine its own stand.' We can derive these conclusions from Wolfowitz's words: The US sincerely believes in the benefit of learning its strategic ally Turkey's views on Iraq in great detail. The deputy defense secretary has fulfilled his mission and gathered information on the issue. Secondly, the Bush admanistration does not have a definite plan of attack. There are various reports and drafts on the issue covering various options. However, it is also certain that Bush is resolved to resort to military option to end Saddam's regime. While doing this, the US wants the support and cooperation of countries like Turkey. In fact, Wolfowitz who has come to listen to these views, also had the mission of explaining and even convincing us about what the US wants to do on the issue. He does not deny the fact. It is interesting for him to speak of differences of opinion, which in plain language means that Turkey does not favor a military option. Wolfowitz will relay these ideas and concerns to Washington. However, if Bush is really decided to strike in Iraq, these will not change his mind. What is more, the reservations of the Western European allies and Russia on the issue won't alter the final decision either. That is, the US will carry out its war plan even without any foreign support. Wolfowitz reiterated a reason the US has put forth for an intervention in Iraq: With his policies, Saddam was threatening the US, the region and Turkey. Today Iraq has dangerous weapons of mass destruction. Saddam, who supports terrorism without batting an eye, can use them with no hesitation and let them be used by others. Therefore, in order to prevent this, everything possible should be done now. According to this argument, if Saddam is gotten rid of one way or other, a new Iraq will emerge. On the issue of Iraqi territorial integrity, Wolfowitz stated that the US was opposed to the founding of a Kurdish state and was in favor of the recognition of Iraqi Turkmens' rights. Wolfowitz voiced these views to the military and political officials he met in Ankara as a guarantee. The main concern of the deputy secretary has to do with a Kurdish formation. Turkey is quite sensitive on this issue. Officials will expect the promises made by Wolfowitz to be kept. Another concern expressed by the Turkish side is the destructive economic affect of a military military operation. It is expected that Wolfowitz will begin to work the necessary mechanisms on the issue upon his return to the US. In brief, our elections talk should not make us forget the possibility of a military intervention."
 THE GOVERNMENT CRISIS AND WOLFOWITZ BY ZEYNEP GURCANLI (STAR)Columnist Zeynep Gurcanli writes on United States Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfotitz's recent visit to Turkey. A summary of her column is as follows:
"'We have arrived in Turkey in the midst of an extremely unstable period.' This remark belongs to United States Deputy Defense Minister Paul Wolfowitz, who recently paid an official visit to Turkey. This was Wolfowitz's only public acknowledgement of an atmosphere of uncertainty recently dominating Turkey's political arena in the wake of resignations and defections from Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit's Democratic Left Party (DSP). Despite Wolfowitz's evident lack of interest in domestic politics, Turkish politicians conveyed many messages to him concerning the recent developments, and one of the most significant messages came from Prime Minister Ecevit himself. The premier told Wolfowitz of possible adverse consequences of a US intervention against Saddam Hussein on the Turkish economy and domestic political scene. Although Ecevit did not expand on these remarks, political circles close to him spelled out for Wolfowitz what this meant in detail: 'Conservative circles in Turkey would oppose such an operation which is not supported by the Arab countries. If public opposition is aroused against the US operation, this would automatically boost the electoral base of radical Islamist groups.' As a matter of fact, Wolfowitz took pains to stress at Ankara's Esenboga Airport just before he departed that Turkey was a model country for Islamic nations worldwide. This remark was evaluated by Turkey's political circles as Wolfowitz wanting to show that he received Ecevit's message loud and clear.
During his visit, Wolfowitz praised Ecevit's performance as a prime minister, in an apparent attempt to quash speculation that the US supported the new formation being put together by former Foreign Minister Ismail Cem and former Deputy Prime Minister Husamettin Ozkan. 'We are very happy to see that the prime minister and his government are still in charge during a period of political instability and uncertainty,' said Wolfowitz. 'We appreciated the prime minister allotting so much time for us in the midst of such a period. I'm very impressed by his views, which he put forward very clearly.' These remarks signaled that the US is continuing to support the ailing prime minister, who is currently engaged in a life-and-death struggle in the political arena. I wonder what the members of the new formation think about this?"
 DERVIS VISITS THE REPUBLICAN PEOPLE'S PARTY BY DERYA SAZAK (MILLIYET)Columnist Derya Sazak writes about yesterday's Kemal Dervýs-Deniz Baykal meeting and what it might mean for Turkish politics. A summary of his column is as follows:
"A surprise meeting took place yesterday between Economy Minister Dervis and the leader of the Republican People's Party (CHP), Deniz Baykal, at the party's headquarters in Ankara. Officially, this meeting was just a forum for the economy minister and the party leader to discuss the problems plaguing the country. However, Dervis is no ordinary minister. Even while serving the current government, Dervis has expressed his support for the establishment of a new party under the leadership of Ismail Cem and Husamettin Ozkan. We asked Baykal about his meeting with Dervis and this is what he said: 'We discussed recent economic developments and agreed that everybody should adopt a positive, constructive attitude. We have elections coming up and time is running out for the necessary EU legislation to be enacted. In addition, a US operation in Iraq looks very likely. This is a critical period for Turkey, and careful analysis of the situation is needed.' So what will Dervis do? Will the CHP and the new party formation collaborate? Lately, the new formation has been criticized by circles close to Dervis, for limiting its members to the deputies who recently resigned from the Democratic Left Party (DSP). It is said that for this formation to be truly new, it needs new blood. Dervis will be leaving tomorrow to go to the United States. He will be there for 10 days. However, the new party is to be established next Monday, just a few days from now. So if Dervis is going to be in the States for the next 10 days, that means he will not be a founding member of the new party. The president, prime minister and possibly military circles want to make sure the economy does not falter before the US operation in Iraq which seems to be planned for the beginning of next year. The fact that Dervis is going to stay in the government could lead him to loosen his ties with the new formation. Alternately, it could increase his dedication to the new party. It still isn't clear if the CHP on the one hand, and Dervis and the new formation on the other, will work together at some point in the future. What we do know, however, is that at yesterday's meeting, Baykal and Dervis spoke to each other as close friends would and expressed their positive views on future cooperation without giving much away."
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