|Thursday, 4 June 2020|
Turkish Press Review, 05-04-07
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From: Turkish Directorate General of Press and Information <http://www.byegm.gov.tr>
Summary of the political and economic news in the Turkish press this morning
 ERDOGAN: “WE PLACES GREAT IMPORTANCE ON FREEDOM OF THE PRESS”Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan said yesterday that freedom of press was the most important freedom in a state of law. Speaking at a ceremony in Ankara marking the 85th anniversary of the Anatolia news agency (AA), Erdogan pointed to the trying working conditions of the media. “I am alongside press members during my contacts both at home and abroad,” said the premier. “Although from time to time I have certain complaints about the press, we all know that freedom of the press is a sine qua non for democracy.” He added that his Justice and Development Party (AKP) government had taken important strides in freedom of the press. /Aksam/
 ERDOGAN MEETS WITH PRESS COUNCIL MEMBERSPrime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan yesterday received a delegation from the Press Council led by its President Oktay Eksi as part of efforts to reach a compromise on the new Turkish Penal Code (TCK). After their talks, Eksi told reporters that his group had submitted a report laying out its objections to the most controversial planks of the new code having to do with the press. Eksi stated that the meeting had been fruitful, adding that he had got the impression that the changes in the TCK would be completed this month and passed in May. /Turkiye/
 TALABANI BECOMES IRAQ’S HEAD OF STATEThe Iraqi Parliament yesterday elected veteran Kurdish leader Jalal Talabani as the country’s president. Talabani is the first Kurd to be Iraq’s president as well as the first non-Arab president of an Arab state. Adel Abdul Mahdi, a Shiite who was finance minister in the outgoing transitional government, and Sunni Arab tribal leader Ghazi Yawar, the former president, were elected vice presidents. After his election, Talbani pledged to work for the good of all Iraqis and to strive for peace in the country. In related news, commenting on this development, Turkish top officials stated that the decision was no surprise. Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan extended his wishes for success to Talabani, adding that Kirkuk should have a special status belonging to all Iraqis. Furthermore, Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul stated that Talabani was an experienced leader and a figure who attaches great importance to Turkey. “We’ll continue to do our best to lend support to Iraq,” added Gul. /Aksam/
 AGREEMENT REACHED ON INCIRLIKThe US’ requests to use Incirlik Airbase for logistical purposes were discussed by the Foreign Ministry, Prime Ministry and General Staff until an agreement was reportedly reached. The agreement is based on UN Security Council Resolution 1546, passed on June 8, 2004. The airbase will be used only for logistical purposes for operations in Iraq and Afghanistan, which means the US won’t be able to transfer troops, weapons, explosives or ammunition through Incirlik. US Air Force transport planes will only be permitted to carry necessary supplies of food, clothing and medicine for US troops operating in the two countries. The planes’ cargo will be monitored regularly by Turkish officials.
 ARINC MEETS AKSU, SECURITY DIRECTOR-GENERALParliament Speaker Bulent Arinc yesterday met with Interior Minister Abdulkadir Aksu and Security Director-General Gokhan Aydiner as well as a number of policemen to mark the 160th anniversary of the establishment of the Turkish Police Organization. Arinc criticized the comments of some European Union officials denouncing Turkish police actions at last month’s Women’s Day demonstration in Istanbul. Remarking that such isolated occurrences mustn’t be used to condemn all Turkish security forces, Arinc argued that Brussels should also take into consideration the unique nature of the incident, saying no European country had ever experienced such violent attacks on its policemen as in Istanbul. /Millliyet/
 GREEK FOREIGN MINISTER TO VISIT TURKEYGreek Foreign Minister Petros Molyviatis is set to pay a visit to Ankara next Tuesday and Wednesday upon the invitation of Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul. The two ministers are expected to discuss possible ways to boost bilateral cooperation as well as regional and international issues. /Cumhuriyet/
 AGAR: “EARLY ELECTIONS SHOULD BE HELD”True Path Party (DYP) leader Mehmet Agar yesterday attended his party’s provincial congress in Kastamonu. Speaking at the gathering, Agar criticized the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) government’s policies. Charging that the government had promised to end unemployment but had not kept its word, Agar claimed that recent figures showing record growth in the Turkish economy had been exaggerated. He also predicted that the government would not be able to complete its five-year term and Turkey would hold early elections in the coming days. Agar added that the DYP aimed at coming to power single-handedly. /Turkiye/
 SERDAR DENKTAS: “ANOTHER REFERENDUM COULD BE HELD”Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) Foreign Minister Serdar Denktas said yesterday that the new process on the island would result in a second referendum on a peace plan. Stressing that the Greek Cypriots did not want any resolution on the island, Denktas stated that Turkish Cypriots should develop alternate plans. /Turkiye/
 STRAW: “TURKEY WITHDRAWING ITS TROOPS FROM CYPRUS WOULD SPUR PEACE EFFORTS”British Foreign Minister Jack Straw yesterday argued that Turkey withdrawing its troops from Cyprus would considerably help peace efforts on the island. Responding to British MPs’ questions on the Cyprus issue in the House of Commons, Straw stated that Turkish Cypriots’ biggest problem is their inability to establish direct commercial ties with European Union countries. “We will continue to encourage the Greek Cypriots to abolish their economic and commercial restrictions against Northern Cyprus,” he added. In addition, he also stressed that finding a resolution to the Cyprus problem was not a precondition for beginning Turkey’s EU membership negotiations. /Cumhuriyet/
 EURLINGS: “TURKEY HAS SLOWED DOWN ITS PACE OF REFORM”European Parliament Turkey Rapporteur Dutch parliamentarian Camiel Eurlings yesterday argued that Turkey had slowed down its pace of reforms prior to the beginning of its membership negotiations. “If Ankara fails to take additional steps to further improve its democracy and human rights, then it could jeopardize the country’s accession negotiations which are supposed to begin on Oct. 3,” he claimed. “It’s also high time for the European Commission to warn Ankara, because the government is apparently suffering from reform fatigue.” /Cumhuriyet/
 INVESTMENT ADVISORY COUNCIL MEETING TO HOST PROMINENT ECONOMIC FIGURESA meeting of the Investment Advisory Council set for April 29 will host prominent economic figures including International Monetary Fund President Rodrigo Rato and World Bank Vice President Shengman Zhang, as the two organizations push for key tax, banking and social security reforms in Turkey. State Economy Minister Ali Babacan will host the meeting where some 21 CEOs and company managers will also attend. Preparations for the gathering will be discussed at a meeting next week by Babacan, Turkish Industrialists’ and Businessmen’ Association (TUSIAD) head Omer Sabanci and Turkish Union of Chambers and Commodities Exchanges (TOBB) head Rifat Hisarciklioglu. The council monitors the investment environment in Turkey and advises the government particularly on the issue of foreign investment. /Milliyet/
 BABACAN: “TURKEY IS UNDERGOING A RADICAL TRANSFORMATION”The rules of the game are changing in Turkey, said State Economy Minister Ali Babacan yesterday at an Istanbul banquet held to mark the opening of the Dubai Islamic Bank’s (DIB) Turkey branch. “Turkey is undergoing a radical transformation which we must fully understand,” he added. For his part, United Arab Emirates Transportation and Communications Minister Sultan bin Saeed Al-Mansouri said that the DIB and his country wanted to make positive contributions to the Turkish economy. /Sabah/
 ISTANBUL TO HOST EASTERN EUROPEAN COUNTRIES’ NEGOTIATORSNegotiators serving Eastern European countries including the Czech Republic, Hungary and Romania will gather tomorrow in Istanbul at a conference entitled “Experiences in the EU Negotiation Process,” sponsored jointly by the Turkish Union of Chambers and Commodities Exchanges (TOBB) and Celebi Strategic Consultancy. The negotiators will underline certain important points that Turkey must take into consideration during its accession talks. /Sabah/
 BOUCHER: “THE US IS VERY SUPPORTIVE OF GROWTH OF BUSINESS IN TURKEY”Washington’s policy on business and economic reform in Turkey is very clear, since it is very supportive of growth of business in Turkey, US State Department spokesman Richard Boucher yesterday told a daily press briefing. Asked by a reporter, citing an anonymous State Department official’s alleged statement that Islamic businesses in Turkey are expanding at a breakneck pace, whether Washington fears the rise of "Islamic businesses" in Turkey, Boucher declined to directly address the unsubstantiated reports. “I don't have anything on that,” he responded. “I hesitate to try to go chasing after every quote from some anonymous official.” He underlined Washington’s full support for the Turkish economy. /Hurriyet/
 FROM THE COLUMNS… FROM THE COLUMNS… FROM THE COLUMNS…
 THE US’ DESIGNS ON ANATOLIA BY UMIT ZILELI (CUMHURIYET)Columnist Umit Zileli comments on Turkish-US relations and Nezih Erverdi’s theories on Washington’s foreign policy. A summary of his column is as follows:
“Strange and perilous things are happening both in Turkey and in the world. The steep and unstoppable rise in oil prices is shaking budgetary balances. The fall of the US dollar frightens not only developing countries, but also leading economic powers such as Europe.
What we should ask is, who benefits from this situation? Nezih Erverdi of Ankara University gives clear and striking answers to this question in his essay ‘Analysis of Turkey and the Rest of the World.’ Below is a short summary of his ideas:
The US has two main principles in its national security policy. The first is, no nation (besides itself) or alliance of nations should be allowed to become a global power. And the second principle is, in order to achieve this goal, the US will use any means, including military intervention.
The US also has three main objectives concerning Turkey, which are founding a ‘Greater Israel,’ ‘Greater Armenia,’ and ‘Greater Kurdistan’ on our lands.
Washington has long been trying to block Europe’s path. It has depreciated the dollar in order to cut the European Union’s exports. Moreover, it has increased oil prices, which has dealt a heavy blow to the economies of oil- dependent countries.
The motive behind the invasion of Afghanistan was getting a post close to China, and the US base in Kyrgyzstan serves similar purposes. Erverdi notes that in order to survive, the EU must turn to Turkey, which stands closer to oil-rich regions such as Central Asia and the Middle East. The Europeans however, foolishly think that it would serve their interests better to support a ‘Kurdish state’ in the region than admit Turkey into the Union.
You may disagree with any of the above claims, but just ask yourself why the Orthodox Fener patriarch now more than ever wants to be ecumenical. Also consider why the Armenian ‘genocide’ claims have won so much support all of a sudden. And by the way, why have EU delegations begun to visit Diyarbakir so frequently?”
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