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Turkish Press Review, 04-11-01
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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
01.11.2004ARINC: “THE EUROPEAN CONSTITUTION IS OUR DIPLOMATIC SUCCESS” IN ROME, ERDOGAN ATTENDS SIGNING OF NEW EU CONSTITUTION GUL: “TURKEY HAS ACTIVELY SUPPORTED THE GREATER MIDDLE EAST INITIATIVE” MINISTERS’ TRIAL AT SUPREME STATE COUNCIL TO BEGIN TOMORROW EARLY ELECTIONS EXPECTED IN TRNC TALAT ACCUSES GREEK CYPRIOTS OF BLOCKING DEVELOPMENT OF TRNC ECONOMY GREEK CYPRIOT PARLIAMENT SPEAKER: “TURKEY SHOULD RECOGNIZE OUR GOVERNMENT BEFORE BEGINNING ITS EU TALKS” GREEK DEPUTY FM: “WE’VE NO INTENTION TO VETO BEGINNING TURKEY’S ACCESSION TALKS” CHP DEPUTY CHAIRMAN: “THE GOVT FAILED TO READ CAREFULLY THE EU COMMISSION REPORT ON TURKEY” TUZMEN PLEDGES INCREASED COOPERATION BETWEEN WORLD FREE TRADE ZONES BABACAN: “WE HOPE TO PRESENT A NEW ECONOMIC PROGRAM AT THE EU SUMMIT” FROM THE COLUMNS…FROM THE COLUMNS…FROM THE COLUMNS A NEW EUROPEAN UNION CONSTITUTION BY YILMAZ OZTUNA (TURKIYE) A LOOK AT THE NEW EU CONSTITUTION BY FERAI TINC (HURRIYET)
 ARINC: “THE EUROPEAN CONSTITUTION IS OUR DIPLOMATIC SUCCESS”Addressing the opening ceremony of a new exhibit of Ottoman-era technology in Istanbul, Parliament Speaker Bulent Arinc yesterday spoke on the new European Constitution signed on Friday by Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul. “Through signing the Constitution, Turkey has made good progress on its path towards the EU,” Arinc remarked. “It’s a milestone for our membership bid because European countries have shown that they take us very seriously.” In related news, over the weekend Arinc also received the European Award of Politics, the top accolade of the European Foundation of Culture. /Star/
 ERDOGAN VISITS DENIZLIPrime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan visited the Aegean city of Denizli over the weekend. Addressing a crowd at the opening of a new Justice Palace building, Erdogan said that his government was continuing its efforts to raise the standard of living of Turkey’s citizens. Touching on the government’s recent decision to attach all hospitals to the Health Ministry, Erdogan called on the citizens to pay no heed to deceptive rumors such as that free treatment would no longer be offered. He added that his government had also begun preparations for a nationwide mass housing program for low-income citizens. After meeting with local businessmen, the premier returned to Ankara last evening. /Turkiye/
 IN ROME, ERDOGAN ATTENDS SIGNING OF NEW EU CONSTITUTIONIn Rome on Friday to attend the signing ceremony for the European Union’s new Constitution, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan met with his Spanish counterpart Rodriguez Zapatero to discuss Turkey’s EU membership bid. During their meeting, Erdogan said that the proper political stance was very important for promoting the nation’s EU bid. “With determination, a leader can positively sway his nation,” he said, adding that a majority of Turkey’s public favored its EU membership. For his part, Zapatero said that unlike other nations, Spain would not hold a referendum on Turkey’s membership. Later, speaking to Italian daily La Reppublica, Erdogan criticized the opposition of some EU member state leaders to Turkey’s membership bid, but declined to name names. /Milliyet/
 GUL: “TURKEY HAS ACTIVELY SUPPORTED THE GREATER MIDDLE EAST INITIATIVE”Turkey has lent active support to the Greater Middle East Initiative (GME), a long-term transformation project aiming to establish peace and stability in the region by improving people’s welfare, Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul told Parliament over the weekend. “We’ve expressed our view that no transformation project can be successful without winning the hearts and approval of the region’s people,” he said. “We’re happy that Ankara’s views have been taken into consideration in the preparation of international documents on the issue. Change cannot be imposed from without, but must be supported from inside.” /Star/
 FORMER MINISTERS’ TRIAL AT SUPREME STATE COUNCIL TO BEGIN TOMORROWThe trial of former Energy and Natural Resources Ministers Cumhur Ersumer and Zeki Cakan is scheduled to begin tomorrow morning at the Supreme State Court. The members of the Constitutional Court will try the ministers for allegations of corruption during their terms in office. Prosecutors are reportedly seeking prison terms for the former ministers of 1-10 years. /Turkiye/
 EARLY ELECTIONS EXPECTED IN TRNCTurkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) National Unity Party (UBP) leader Dervis Eroglu’s efforts over the last week to form a new coalition government have failed. Eroglu is set to meet with President Rauf Denktas this morning to ask that he be relieved of the assignment, and Denktas is expected to call for early elections in January. Last month the TRNC’s nine-month old Republican People’s Party (CTP)-Democratic Party (DP) coalition government resigned due to its lack of a majority in Parliament. /Turkiye/
 TALAT ACCUSES GREEK CYPRIOTS OF BLOCKING DEVELOPMENT OF TRNC ECONOMYTurkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) Prime Minister Mehmet Ali Talat over the weekend accused the Greek Cypriot administration of blocking the development of Turkish Cyprus’ economy. “The Greek Cypriot administration knows very well that sitting at the negotiating table with an economically powerful Turkish Cypriot state would make things harder for it, so they are constantly trying to hinder our economic development,” he argued. “They want us to remain isolated, poor and dependent on foreign countries.” /Star/
 GREEK CYPRIOT PARLIAMENT SPEAKER: “TURKEY SHOULD RECOGNIZE OUR GOVERNMENT BEFORE BEGINNING ITS EU TALKS”Greek Cypriot Parliament Speaker Dimitris Hristofyas said yesterday that first Turkey should first recognize Greek Cyprus before beginning its European Union accession talks. Speaking to Greek daily Katimerine, Hristofyas said that Ankara recognizing Greek Cyprus would be important for its EU aspirations. /Milliyet/
 GREEK DEPUTY FM: “WE’VE NO INTENTION TO VETO BEGINNING TURKEY’S ACCESSION TALKS”Greek Deputy Foreign Minister Yannis Valinakis said yesterday that his government had no intention to veto beginning Turkey’s accession talks with the European Union at the December EU summit, but added that these negotiations would be difficult. “Turkey should know that it has no alternative to the EU,” said Valinakis. /Cumhuriyet/
 CHP DEPUTY CHAIRMAN: “THE GOVT FAILED TO READ CAREFULLY THE EU COMMISSION REPORT ON TURKEY”Onur Oymen, deputy chairman of the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) as well as Turkey’s ambassador to NATO, over the weekend charged that the government had signed the EU Commission’s recent report on Turkey without reading it carefully enough. “Joining the EU without the report being corrected would be a mistake,” he said. “Open-ended negotiations cannot be accepted. Moreover, the report recommends permanently restricting Turkish workers’ right to free movement. The commission’s recommendation is full of traps. The right to free movement is one of the Union’s basic principles, so this condition is unacceptable. Besides, the EU Commission also recommended that Turkey re-open trade with Armenia. In signing the report, the government neglected these important points.” /Star/
 TUZMEN PLEDGES INCREASED COOPERATION BETWEEN WORLD FREE TRADE ZONESState Minister Kursad Tuzmen over the weekend attended the World Economic Processing Zone Association’s (WEPZA) annual meeting in Cape Town, South Africa. “In the years to come, the logistics of the free trade zones will be more important than their financial advantages,” said Tuzmen, who has chaired WEPZA for two terms. “Our work on improving cooperation between these zones is continuing.” /Star/
 BABACAN: “WE HOPE TO PRESENT A NEW ECONOMIC PROGRAM AT THE EU SUMMIT”Visiting Sanliurfa over the weekend, State Minister for the Economy Ali Babacan said yesterday that the government was nearing completion of a new three-year economic program. “We hope to complete the program by Dec. 1 and present it to EU officials at the Dec. 17 EU summit,” added Babacan. /Cumhuriyet/
 FROM THE COLUMNS…FROM THE COLUMNS…FROM THE COLUMNS
 A NEW EUROPEAN UNION CONSTITUTION BY YILMAZ OZTUNA (TURKIYE)Columnist Yilmaz Oztuna comments on the new European Union Constitution signed in Rome last week. A summary of his column is as follows:
“The European Union’s new Constitution was signed in Rome on Friday by the presidents, prime ministers and foreign ministers of the 25 EU member states. The 81st anniversary of the Turkish Republic fell on the same day. Candidate countries Bulgaria, Turkey and Romania only signed the Constitution, which will go into effect in 2009, in its final stage. Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul signed on Turkey’s behalf. Bulgaria and Romania are due to become EU members soon, and Bosnia-Herzegovina and Albania will apply for membership. What will Russia’s stance be? How close to the EU will Turkey be in 2009?
The European Economic Community, the EU’s forerunner, was first established with the 1957 Treaty of Rome. In 1962, Prime Minister Ismet Inonu declared Turkey’s intention to join. Last week Chief of General Staff Gen. Hilmi Ozkok advised caution in the leadup to the Dec. 17 EU summit. Friday’s signing ceremony was a self-confident, simple but magnificent event surrounded by remnants of the Roman Empire. Europe was united as a single power for the first time in 2,000 years. However, the EU’s total defense budget is less than that of the US. Likewise, the current EU isn’t the world’s greatest military power, as Rome was 2,000 years ago. The new EU Constitution needs to be approved in member states’ Parliaments or else through public referendums. This Constitution will be discussed through 2009, and certain of its articles could be changed.”
 A LOOK AT THE NEW EU CONSTITUTION BY FERAI TINC (HURRIYET)Columnist Ferai Tinc comments on the newly signed Constitution of the European Union. A summary of her column is as follows:
“The EU member states will explain the new Constitution to their publics, because it is EU public opinion which will have the final say on it. Turkey has closely followed the Constitution’s preparation and therefore I assume that our prime minister, foreign minister and other officials and bodies know something about it. Since we are readying ourselves to become European citizens, we have to learn about this Constitution. Let’s begin to understand it by trying to answer this question: ‘What kind of Europe?’
The EU is an area where 25 countries with a total of 453 million citizens share common values. The Constitution stresses that it is a region of peace created through rules aiming at peace and prosperity. The concept which Europe sees as a guarantee of peace is ‘the existence of differences within the Union.’ Nobody wants others to become like them, but in the interests of harmony, mutual altruism constitutes the essence of the EU.
The Constitution aims at deepening the share of sovereignty. Its purpose is to establish a real union among European peoples and nations to make Europe a single actor on the international stage. Furthermore, the basic rights of European people gain legal power. The section on citizenship says that European citizenship is a supplement of national citizenship and cannot replace it.
The European Parliament will become more influential. The EP will approve laws as the Council of Ministers. Its authority has been expanded into fields like controlling the Union’s borders and approving the budget. The EP will also choose the leader who will represent Europe for two-and-a-half years. The purpose of the Constitution is to bring Europeans closer to each other.
The EU seems to be determined to become an influential actor in world politics. Within the framework of joint security policy, the Constitution says that ‘if a member state faces an attack, other members will com to its aid.’ The Constitution granting member states the opportunity to establish defense integration should also be underlined. Even the framework of the EU Constitution shows Turkey that it has no choice besides becoming an EU member. We won’t approve the EU Constitution, but we were present at its establishment and we will soon claim our rights within its framework. When approved, it will also be our Constitution.”
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