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Turkish Press Review, 04-11-25

Turkish Press Review Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

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 : newspot@byegm.gov.tr <caption> <_caption> Summary of the political and economic news in the Turkish press this morning

25.11.2004

FROM THE COLUMNS… FROM THE COLUMNS… FROM THE COLUMNS…

CONTENTS

  • [01] TURKEY-EU TROIKA SUGGEST BEGINNING OF ANKARA’S TALKS IN JULY 2005
  • [02] ERDOGAN MEETS WITH EP SOCIALIST GROUP HEAD, DISCUSSES TURKEY’S EU BID
  • [03] ARINC: “IN FALLUJAH, THE US VIOLATED INTERNATIONAL LAW”
  • [04] GERMAN CHANCELLOR: “TURKEY’S MEMBERSHIP WILL SERVE EU INTERESTS”
  • [05] EU COMMISSION HEAD: “ANKARA SHOULD BE GIVEN A DATE TO START ITS MEMBERSHIP TALKS”
  • [06] BARZANI PUSHES FOR DELAY IN IRAQI POLLS
  • [07] ISRAELI DIPLOMAT VISITS ANKARA TO DISCUSS BILATERAL RELATIONS
  • [08] TURKISH-ITALIAN FORUM TO BEGIN TODAY IN ROME
  • [09] HUNGARIAN FM DUE TO VISIT TURKEY
  • [10] DISCUSSIONS ON NEW IMF STANDBY TO RESUME NEXT WEEK
  • [11] HISARCIKLIOGLU: “IF WE DON’T WANT IMF HELP, WE SHOULD PICK UP THE PACE OF REFORMS”
  • [12] TUSIAD DELEGATION TO ATTEND UNICE MEETING IN THE NETHERLANDS
  • [13] TURK TELEKOM SALE TO BEGIN TODAY
  • [14] FROM THE COLUMNS… FROM THE COLUMNS… FROM THE COLUMNS…
  • [15] EVERYONE IS HAPPY, BUT... BY SAMI KOHEN (MILLIYET)

  • [01] TURKEY-EU TROIKA SUGGEST BEGINNING OF ANKARA’S TALKS IN JULY 2005

    At yesterday’s final Turkey-European Union Troika meeting at The Hague in the runup to next month’s EU summit, high-level officials from both the EU and Ankara agreed to begin accession talks next July. Praising Ankara’s reforms on the road to Union membership, EU Term President the Netherlands’ Foreign Minister Bernard Bot said, “If EU leaders decide to begin accession talks with Turkey at December’s summit, then these may begin in July 2005.” Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul stated that Turkey had fulfilled the Copenhagen criteria, adding that Ankara was expecting an objective, impartial and fair decision on Dec. 17. When Bot said that Ankara should first recognize Greek Cyprus, Gul said, “The Turkish side has sought peace on Cyprus. However, the Greek Cypriots rejected this. A final resolution does not depend on us, but we are open to efforts to reach a settlement.” After completing his contacts, Gul and his delegation traveled to Rome to attend the Turkish-Italian Forum. /Turkiye/

    [02] ERDOGAN MEETS WITH EP SOCIALIST GROUP HEAD, DISCUSSES TURKEY’S EU BID

    Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan yesterday met with Martin Schultz, the head of the Socialist group in the European Parliament, to discuss a number of issues, including Turkey’s European Union membership bid. During their meeting, Schultz predicted that at next month’s EU summit the Greek Cypriot administration would not veto Ankara beginning its accession talks with the Union, adding, however, that the possibility could not be discounted. Schultz urged Ankara to consider recognizing Greek Cyprus, warning that deciding not to do so could make its negotiating process more difficult. He added that the Greek Cypriot administration should also take steps on the issue. Schultz also praised Erdogan, saying that he supported the government’s steps towards EU membership. /Aksam/

    [03] ARINC: “IN FALLUJAH, THE US VIOLATED INTERNATIONAL LAW”

    The principles of international law were violated by US military forces in Fallujah, Iraq, making the province an unfortunate symbol of crimes against humanity, charged Parliament Speaker Bulent Arinc at yesterday’s 24th meeting of the Black Sea Economic Cooperation Parliamentary Assembly (BSECPA). “International organizations have not only economic goals, but should also try to contribute to world peace and stability,” he said. He added that measures must be taken in order to crack down on terrorist groups targeting civilians. /Star/

    [04] GERMAN CHANCELLOR: “TURKEY’S MEMBERSHIP WILL SERVE EU INTERESTS”

    Speaking yesterday to the Bundestag, German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder praised Turkey’s role as a stabilizing factor amidst a restive region. Reiterating his support for Ankara’s European Union membership, Schroeder said, “Above all, Turkey’s membership is important for our political and economic interests.” Pointing to conflicts in the region, Schroeder said that the support of Turkey, an actor promoting stability in a troubled geography, would also greatly contribute to Germany’s interests. He added that he expected a positive decision during next month’s EU summit to begin accession talks with Ankara, followed by a 10-15 year process. In related news, Slovakian Foreign Minister Eduard Kukan said that his government had decided to support the beginning of Turkey’s EU talks. He cautioned, however, “The outcome can’t be guaranteed. Everything depends on Turkey’s performance in implementing the EU criteria.” /Turkiye/

    [05] EU COMMISSION HEAD: “ANKARA SHOULD BE GIVEN A DATE TO START ITS MEMBERSHIP TALKS”

    In an interview with Italian daily Coriera Della Sera yesterday, European Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso said that he believed that Turkey’s membership negotiations should begin in recognition of Ankara’s significant progress in fulfilling the EU criteria. “However, the views of EU members who have certain sensitivities and reservations on Turkey’s membership should also be given careful consideration,” he added. Barroso argued that such countries should be given the opportunity to evaluate a possible Turkish entry within their own perspective. /Star/

    [06] BARZANI PUSHES FOR DELAY IN IRAQI POLLS

    Nechirvan Barzani, a senior official of the Iraqi Kurdish Democratic Party (KDP) yesterday reiterated his call for postponement of elections in the war-torn country, now scheduled for Jan. 30. “The Iraqi Kurds are ready to participate in polls, but weather conditions in the region where Kurds live will be unfavorable,” said Barzani, predicting that the region would be covered by snow by the end of January. On the other hand, Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul said earlier this week that the elections should take place as scheduled and not exclude any part of Iraqi society. /Turkish Daily News/

    [07] ISRAELI DIPLOMAT VISITS ANKARA TO DISCUSS BILATERAL RELATIONS

    Israeli Foreign Undersecretary Ron Prosor arrived yesterday in Ankara. During his stay, Prosor is expected to meet with his Turkish counterpart Ali Tuygan to discuss a number of issues, including bilateral relations, the Isreali-Palestinian dispute, and Iraq. /Cumhuriyet/

    [08] TURKISH-ITALIAN FORUM TO BEGIN TODAY IN ROME

    The Turkish-Italian Forum is set to begin today in Rome with the participation of high-level representatives and analysts. The first Turkish- Italian Forum, organized under the auspices of Ankara and Rome’s foreign ministries, is to focus on Turkey’s EU membership bid on the eve of the critical Dec. 17 summit where EU leaders are to decide on whether to start Ankara’s membership negotiations. The three-day forum will host important figures from the worlds of politics, the economy, culture and the media. Beside the foreign ministers of the two countries, other attendees will include State Minister for the Economy Ali Babacan and his Italian counterpart Domenico Siniscalco. /Sabah/

    [09] HUNGARIAN FM DUE TO VISIT TURKEY

    Hungarian Foreign Minister Ferenc Somogyi is due to arrive in Ankara on Monday for an official visit. During his visit, Somogyi is expected to meet with Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul to discuss a number of issues, including Turkey’s European Union membership bid. Gul is due to seek Somogyi’s support for beginning Ankara’s accession talks. In related news, Belgian Foreign Minister Karel de Gucht is due to pay an official visit to Turkey on Dec. 3-4 to discuss Turkey’s relations with the EU and Ankara’s prospective EU talks. /Cumhuriyet/

    [10] DISCUSSIONS ON NEW IMF STANDBY TO RESUME NEXT WEEK

    An International Monetary Fund delegation headed by the Fund’s Turkey desk chief, Reza Moghadam, is to arrive in Ankara next Tuesday to resume talks on a new standby agreement. “Discussions on a new IMF standby arrangement for Turkey were adjourned on Oct. 26 to allow time for the government to finalize proposals relating to implementation of its macroeconomic policy objectives and to flesh out its structural reform plans, especially regarding tax and social security reforms and the new banking law,” said a statement issued by Hugh Bredenkamp, the IMF’s senior resident representative in Turkey. “The authorities have announced that they have made good progress in all these areas. Consequently, at their invitation, an IMF mission headed by Reza Moghadam will return to Turkey on Nov. 30 to resume discussions on the new standby arrangement.” In related news, Moghadam, who has been working at his post for one-and-a-half years, is due to step down after the first round of the standby review to allow his promotion to veteran advisor at the IMF’s European Department. /Hurriyet - Sabah/

    [11] HISARCIKLIOGLU: “IF WE DON’T WANT IMF HELP, WE SHOULD PICK UP THE PACE OF REFORMS”

    Turkey is implementing its economic program successfully despite a number of problems and difficulties, said Turkish Union of Chambers and Commodities Exchanges (TOBB) head Rifat Hisarciklioglu yesterday. “We will need IMF assistance unless we can manage to complete all the necessary reforms,” he warned. “What we seek is to help our country reach a point where we don’t need the IMF, which is why we must accelerate the reform process, especially in the public sector.” /Sabah/

    [12] TUSIAD DELEGATION TO ATTEND UNICE MEETING IN THE NETHERLANDS

    A delegation from the Turkish Industrialists’ and Businessmen’s Association (TUSIAD) headed by TUSIAD Chairman Omer Sabanci is due to attend next Friday’s Chairmanship Council meeting of the Union of Industrial and Employers’ Confederations of Europe (UNICE) at The Hague, the Netherlands. During the meeting, the TUSIAD members plan to brief their European counterparts on the steps taken by Turkey for its European Union membership bid. /Aksam/

    [13] TURK TELEKOM SALE TO BEGIN TODAY

    The government is set to launch today the privatization process of state land-line company Turk Telekom and is expected to seek bids through the end of next May. The bloc sale of 55% of the company is central to the country’s privatization program under a $19 billion loan accord with the International Monetary Fund. “We will invite tenders for the privatization with advertisements starting tomorrow,” said Turk Telekom head Metin Kilci. /Cumhuriyet/

    [14] FROM THE COLUMNS… FROM THE COLUMNS… FROM THE COLUMNS…

    [15] EVERYONE IS HAPPY, BUT... BY SAMI KOHEN (MILLIYET)

    Columnist Sami Kohen comments on the recent Egypt conference on the Iraq issue. A summary of his column is as follows:

    “A typical example of a conference resulting in a consensus is that everybody is happy with the common declaration and the agreements reached. This week’s conference in Egypt on the Iraq issue was considered very successful. Turkey is particularly pleased with it because its declaration was in line with Ankara’s wishes. The take on Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul’s speech at the conference and results of bilateral contacts were quite positive. For example, the declaration includes Ankara’s views on Iraq’s political future, such as protecting its territorial integrity and establishing a united (federal and democratic) state structure. Another important point concerns holding elections as scheduled, that is, on Jan. 30 with full nationwide participation. Although such countries as Egypt, Jordan and Saudi Arabia seem to want a delay, Turkey is sticking with this date and the goal of broad participation. The declaration also includes the issue of terrorist activities in Iraq. The importance of this paragraph for Turkey is that it forces the Iraq government to fight the PKK terrorist group. Anyhow, the Iraq government said during the conference that it was ready to put together a border security agreement with Turkey. Gul also issued important messages and warnings in his speech. One of them was his call to Iraqi Kurdish leaders not to try to alter the region’s population makeup. This referred to recent developments in Kirkuk which Gul warned might have dangerous results. In addition, during his meeting with US Secretary of State Colin Powell, Gul was quick to reiterate his concerns about the PKK. I wonder what will come of this.

    This conference was held in order to discuss Iraq’s future. However, bringing 20 countries and institutions together made for a larger agenda. For example, the Palestinian issue was discussed at a separate meeting by the US, the UN, the EU and Russia. The consensus reached during the conference showed that the international community didn’t favor the US attack on Iraq, but had taken a pragmatic stance on events there as soon as possible. Such countries as Iran and Syria and others which have opposed US Iraq policy like France and Russia took a more moderate and compromising stance. French Foreign Minister Michel Barnier’s statement reflected the realistic bent which ensured consensus at the conference: ‘We know the stance of various countries before the war. However, now we should look to the future. It’s our common duty to end the instability in Iraq’.”

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