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Turkish Press Review, 04-07-23
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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> e-mail : email@example.com <caption> <_caption> Summary of the political and economic news in the Turkish press this morning
23.07.2004FROM THE COLUMNS…FROM THE COLUMNS…FROM THE COLUMNS…
 HIGH-SPEED TRAIN DERAILS EN ROUTE FROM ISTANBUL TO ANKARAA high-speed train en route from Istanbul to Ankara derailed last night near Pamukova, a town in the northwestern province of Sakarya. The five-car train was carrying 243 passengers and 12 personnel. The Transportation Ministry announced that 37 people had been killed and 43 injured in the crash. While a ministry statement said that the cause of the derailment was as yet unknown, a technical team has been dispatched to the crash site to investigate. Prime Minister Recep Erdogan and Transportation Minister Binali Yildirim went to the site immediately after the derailment. In related news, Erdogan cancelled his scheduled trip to Bosnia-Herzegovina to attend today’s reopening of the historical Mostar Bridge due to the tragic incident. /All Papers/
 ERDOGAN URGES BUSINESSMEN TO INVEST MORE FOR JOB CREATIONSpeaking at a meeting of the Ankara Chamber of Industry (ASO) yesterday, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan called on businessmen and leaders of non-governmental organizations (NGOs) to invest more in order to create new jobs and boost employment. Erdogan stressed that interest rates were still too high and that the government hoped to bring them down from 15% to 10%. The premier vowed that the government would never pursue populist policies. Erdogan also called on the citizens not to avoid paying their taxes, warning that doing so would damage the economy. Touching on Turkey’s European Union membership bid, Erdogan said that if Ankara gets a date from the EU to begin its accession talks, it could attract more foreign capital. “I believe that Turkey will get a date this December to begin its accession talks,” he added. In related news, Erdogan is due to travel to Iran next Tuesday to pay a two-day official visit. /Turkiye/
 ERDOGAN: “MY VISIT TO FRANCE WAS POSITIVE”Speaking to reporters after completing a three-day visit to France yesterday, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan said that his trip had been very positive, adding that European Union member states were not opposed to Turkey’s EU membership bid. “I believe that their negative views have turned positive,” said Erdogan, adding that he believed Ankara would get a date from the EU this December to begin its accession talks. /Star/
 GUL: “I BELIEVE THAT THE EU REPORT WILL BE OBJECTIVE AND REALISTIC”Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul said yesterday that he was sure that the EU Commission’s October progress report on Turkey would be realistic and objective. Speaking to reporters after meeting with EU Trade Commissioner Pascal Lamy in Ankara, Gul said that during their meeting, technical issues faced by Turkey in the Customs Union had been taken up. For his part, Lamy stated that Ankara had taken very important steps on its road to EU membership which should be taken into consideration during the report’s preparation. /Turkiye/
 MUMCU TO ATTEND REOPENING OF MOSTAR BRIDGECulture and Tourism Minister Erkan Mumcu is due to travel today to Bosnia- Herzegovina to attend the opening ceremony of the rebuilt historical Mostar Bridge. Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who was scheduled to attend the ceremony, has postponed his visit due to last night’s train accident in Sakarya. /Turkiye/
 50 TURKS TO SERVE IN MACEDONIA PEACEKEEPING FORCEAnkara is preparing to contribute 50 personnel to a peacekeeping force currently serving in Macedonia. Under a protocol between Turkey and the European Union, this September the personnel will join the operation, which began last December. The cost of this contribution will reportedly be met by Turkey itself. /Turkiye/
 BAHRAINI BUSINESS LEADER VISITS ITOBahrain Chamber of Trade and Industry head Khalid Kanoo yesterday visited the Istanbul Chamber of Trade (ITO) to discuss Turkish-Bahraini trade relations. During the meeting, Kanoo said that trade tries between the two countries should be strengthened and also proposed joint ventures. /Star/
 ANTI-TERRORISM ACADEMY TO BE ESTABLISHED IN ANKARAAn anti-terrorism academy is to be established in Ankara to train Turkish security forces on methods of fighting terrorism. The US’ Federal Bureau of Intelligence (FBI) will provide the project with $3 million. The academy, which will be run by Turkish security experts, will be the fifth anti- terrorism academy established outside the US with FBI assistance. /Turkiye/
 FROM THE COLUMNS…FROM THE COLUMNS…FROM THE COLUMNS…
 HAS ISRAEL MANAGED TO SATISFY TURKEY? BY MUSTAFA KARAALIOGLU (YENI SAFAK)Columnist Mustafa Karaalioglu comments on Turkish-Israeli relations. A summary of his column is as follows:
“Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul is quite sensitive about the recent tension between Turkey and Israel. He disagrees with the argument that Israel is the only country in the region that Turkey has failed to maintain good relations with. ‘Everything is normal,’ he says. ‘Our relations with Israel are going well as usual.’ He believes that Turkey must establish good relations with both Israel and the Palestinians in order to be able to effectively contribute to the Middle East peace process.
As we all know, Turkey has recently warned Israel about two issues: ending ‘state terrorism’ against the Palestinians, and its activities in northern Iraq. The Sharon government seems determined to continue acting unilaterally on the former, turning a deaf ear to widespread international criticism. But the latter issue is much more serious for Turkey. When asked about the reports, Israeli officials deny these claims. ‘There’s no need for concern, as Israel isn’t conducting any military activities in the region,’ they say. Israeli Deputy Prime Minister Ehud Olmert also denied the claims during his recent visit to Turkey. But there was a nuance to his words: ‘I assure you that Israel isn’t involved in any activities in northern Iraq which would concern Turkey.’ In other words, Israel is involved in certain activities in the region, about which, Olmert asserts, Turkey need not be concerned.
Israel is currently in contact with the Kurdish groups in the region so as to follow its two big enemies closely, namely, Syria and Iran. Such activities are normal for a country like Israel which doesn’t shrink from violating international law. The cooperation of the Sharon government with the Kurds helps these groups, including the terrorist PKK, reassert themselves in the region. At least the PKK gains more power.
Turkey’s concern and opposition should be interpreted as an ‘early warning.’ As a matter of fact, Israel’s stance contradicts Washington’s, as the US has pledged to fight PKK terrorism.
As long as Israel continues to pursue such questionable policies, Ankara’s doubts will inevitably multiply.”
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