|Monday, 25 May 2020|
Turkish Press Review, 05-04-12
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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
12.04.2005SEZER’S VISIT TO SYRIA, TUYGAN’S TO WASHINGTON TO BEGIN TOMORROW ERDOGAN: “TURKEY CANNOT BE DIVIDED” GREEK FM DUE IN ANKARA TO MEET WITH SEZER, GUL EU COMMISSION TO PREPARE NEW PLAN FOR CYPRUS YASAR YAKIS BLASTS FALSEHOODS IN GERMAN GREENS’ ‘GENOCIDE’ BILL TRABZON GOVERNOR: “POLICE INTERVENTION HALTED THE BEATING OF MEMBERS OF TAYAD” AKP TO PAY SURPRISE VISIT TO TUSIAD DEATH TOLL OF TURKISH TRUCK DRIVERS IN IRAQ REACHES 90 FMR CIA OFFICIAL: “ANKARA ISN’T ANTI-AMERICAN, IT’S INDEPENDENT” FROM THE COLUMNS...FROM THE COLUMNS...FROM THE COLUMNS... WHAT’S HAPPENED TO ERDOGAN SINCE DECEMBER? BY MEHMET BARLAS (SABAH) CASUS BELLI BY TURGUT TARHANLI (RADIKAL)
 SEZER’S VISIT TO SYRIA, TUYGAN’S TO WASHINGTON TO BEGIN TOMORROWPresident Ahmet Necdet Sezer’s controversial visit to Syria is set to begin tomorrow. During his contacts, Sezer is expected to discuss international developments with his Syrian counterpart Bashar Assad and express his satisfaction at the withdrawal of Syrian troops from Lebanon. At the same time, Foreign Ministry Undersecretary Ali Tuygan, accompanied by a delegation, will travel to Washington to hold a series of contacts with top American officials. Armenian genocide allegations, the Iran issue, as well as bilateral ties are expected to dominate the talks. The Cyprus issue will also be discussed. Tuygan will also urge US officials to end the international isolation of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC). /Turkiye/
 ERDOGAN: “TURKEY CANNOT BE DIVIDED”Speaking to Turks at a meeting in Oslo yesterday as part of his contacts in Norway, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan said the Kurds were also citizens of Turkey, adding that they should not be conflated with the terrorist PKK. “All ethnic communities in Turkey are equal citizens,” said the premier. “We have three red lines. We are opposed to ethnic, regional and religious nationalism.” Claiming that certain groups were trying to divide Turkey, Erdogan said that the Turkish people would not let them realize this aim. Then Erdogan met with his Norwegian counterpart Kjell Magne Bondevik. At a press conference, Bondevik said that the two countries had very good relations, adding that his country supported Turkey’s European Union membership. For his part, Erdogan stated that Ankara hoped to develop trade ties with Norway. Stressing that the Iraq and EU topics were taken up during their talks, the Turkish premier stated that they had vowed to act together against terrorism. /Turkiye/
 GREEK FM DUE IN ANKARA TO MEET WITH SEZER, GULGreek Foreign Minister Petros Molivyatis is due today to arrive in Ankara to pay an official visit. During his stay in Turkey, Moliviatis is expected to meet with Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul to discuss a number of issues, including Turkey’s European Union membership bid, bilateral relations, and the Cyprus issue. Gul will reportedly ask that Moliviatis encourage Greek Cypriots to seek a resolution on the island. The foreign minister is also expected to tell Moliviatis that the EU should keep its promise to bring the international isolation of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) to an end. Later, Moliviatis is expected to be received by President Ahmet Necdet Sezer to discuss bilateral relations. After completing his contacts in Ankara, the top Greek diplomat will proceed to Istanbul. /Cumhuriyet/
 EU COMMISSION TO PREPARE NEW PLAN FOR CYPRUSThe European Union Commission is due to begin preparing a new Cyprus plan in order to make Greek Cypriot leader Tassos Papadopoulos sit at the negotiating table again for a resolution on the island. The new plan is expected to include both Ankara opening its harbors to Greek Cypriot ships and direct trade beginning with the TRNC. Under the plan, Turkey could make a gesture by withdrawing some of its troops from the island. The plan also reportedly requires that two deputies from the TRNC be observers in the European Parliament and that the EU release about €260 billion in economic aid to Ankara. /Aksam/
 YASAR YAKIS BLASTS FALSEHOODS IN GERMAN GREENS’ ‘GENOCIDE’ BILLSpeaking at a press conference following his meeting with Fritz Kuhn, the foreign policy spokesperson of the Greens in Germany, Parliament European Union Harmonization Commission head Yasar Yakis said that a draft bill prepared by the Greens on the so-called Armenian genocide was rife with falsehoods, adding that the measure could harm relations between Germany and Turkey. /Turkiye/
 TRABZON GOVERNOR: “POLICE INTERVENTION HALTED THE BEATING OF MEMBERS OF TAYAD”Speaking at a press conference yesterday, Trabzon Governor Huseyin Yavuzdemir said that police intervention on Sunday had prevented the beating of five members of the Families of Prison Inmates Support Association (TAYAD) from escalating into a larger incident. He added, “Once again, on Sunday some disturbances occurred, and the police again intervened to prevent it from growing more serious. Those who violate the law will be prosecuted to the full extent of the law. No one has the right to disturb the public peace.” /Turkiye/
 AKP TO PAY SURPRISE VISIT TO TUSIADThe Justice and Development Party (AKP) intends to take concrete steps towards breaking the ice between Turkish Industrialists’ and Businessmen’s Association (TUSIAD) Chairman Omer Sabanci and Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan. Managers of five AKP head offices are meeting several TUSIAD members in Istanbul today. Among the AKP members set to attend the meeting are Dengi Mir Mehmet Firat, Nazim Ekren, Saban Disli, Bulent Gedikli and Reha Denemec. All TUSIAD members except Sabanci will attend the meeting, which will be held at the TUSIAD main office. /Hurriyet/
 DEATH TOLL OF TURKISH TRUCK DRIVERS IN IRAQ REACHES 90Attacks on Turkish truck drivers in Iraq, which to date have taken some 90 lives, are ongoing. Iraqi security officials announced yesterday that another Turkish driver, Cevat Bahtiyar, had lost his life in a blast in northern Baghdad. Last week, in the northern Iraqi city of Kirkuk, a Turkish truck driver was also killed, while six others were wounded. /Turkiye/
 FMR CIA OFFICIAL: “ANKARA ISN’T ANTI-AMERICAN, IT’S INDEPENDENT”It would be erroneous or even dangerous to assume that widespread Turkish opposition to many Bush administration policies are symptomatic of a broader strategic hostility, wrote Graham E. Fuller, former chairman of the National Intelligence Council at the CIA, in a commentary in yesterday’s Los Angeles Times. “And it would be exceptionally shortsighted for US policymakers to argue that the democratically elected moderate Islamist government in Turkey is not sufficiently pro-American or that it should be pressured to change its leadership,” he added. “In reality, US interests — in the broader scheme of things — have been exceptionally well-served by this Turkish government, which has brought broad democratic reforms to the country as part of its explicit commitment to gain European Union membership.” Fuller remarked that since the end of the Cold War, Turkey's reliance on US leadership in foreign policy has dropped sharply, especially when Turkish leaders believe that US policies run counter to their own national interests. “In the new world order, unilateralism has its limits,” he argued. “Turkey is not lost to us; we just need to take a more realistic view of the limits of our own power, be sensitive to the risks of ignoring other states' nationalist feelings and interests, and adopt a longer-term, more enlightened view of our own interests. Turkey is doing fine.” /Hurriyet/
 FROM THE COLUMNS...FROM THE COLUMNS...FROM THE COLUMNS...
 WHAT’S HAPPENED TO ERDOGAN SINCE DECEMBER? BY MEHMET BARLAS (SABAH)Columnist Mehmet Barlas comments on Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s attitude since Dec. 17, when Turkey got a date from the European Union to start its membership negotiations. A summary of his column is as follows:
“Why has Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan changed since December 17? Although he was the one who managed to get a date for our country’s European Union membership talks, his remarks and attitudes on the EU have done a complete turnaround since that pivotal date. Why?
I wonder if he started to believe that the EU would never accept Turkey after seeing Brussels’ vexing pressure on Ankara about the Cyprus issue. Or whether he’s beginning to see his party’s future lying in a ‘nationalist’ discourse. Maybe he’s quite upset about our media’s recent comments? Maybe that’s why he has yet to appoint a chief negotiator? Or maybe that’s why he’s not tackling the rise of nationalism but choosing to neglect it in silence? Is this a metamorphosis in a Kafkaesque sense?
The change he’s undergone is obvious. ‘The Intellectuals Warning Declaration’ bearing 200 signatures underlines this situation very clearly and warns the government about recent trends.
‘Recent developments concern us greatly because they could constitute significant obstacles to our country’s democratization efforts,’ the declaration said. ‘The new penal code has oppressive articles to restrict the freedoms of the press and expression. The reaction against the Newruz incidents has taken a turn into racial and ultra-nationalist attitudes. The rise of such extremist movements could result in tension and violence. We’re concerned that our country will be plunged into a new spiral of violence and conflict. A district governor overstepped his authority and launched a campaign against a novelist [Orhan Pamuk] to confiscate his books, echoing the Nazi reigme’s suppression of freedom of expression. The issues of a so-called genocide and minority rights which are being debated in the international arena could also raise this tension in Turkey.
‘We believe that under these circumstances peaceful policies are necessary and they should be regarded not as concessions, but rather indispensable for rationality and common sense. We cannot allow a separatist, oppressive mentality to dominate our country, which is why we’re calling on all state officials to act with common sense and do their utmost not to dim our hopes for democracy and human rights’.”
 CASUS BELLI BY TURGUT TARHANLI (RADIKAL)Columnist Turgut Tarhanli comments on Turkish-Greek relations and the dispute over the limits of Greece’s territorial waters. A summary of his column is as follows:
“There is a longstanding disagreement between Ankara and Athens over the limits of Greece’s territorial waters. Greece adopted the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea in 1982, but Turkey refused to sign it, because the convention allows the extension of territorial water limits to 12 miles, which Greece from time to time claims it has the right to do.
Parliament Speaker Bulent Arinc recently made a proposal to lift the ‘casus belli’ [cause for war linked to the territorial water issue] declared years ago against Greece. Arinc’s proposal spurred a broad discussion.
Some of the most frequently asked questions are, ‘Can Turkey declare war on Greece in accordance with the casus belli decision?’ and ‘How can we defend our own rights in the Aegean against the Greeks if we lift the casus belli?’
First and foremost, casus belli doesn’t mean ‘all-out war’ on Greece. At any rate, it’s unlawful to resort to violence as a means of solving disputes between nations. We should take that into account while discussing the issue.
If anything, casus belli means that should Greece extend its territorial water limits to 12 miles, Turkey won’t recognize this. Turkish ships will follow their usual route, thus ‘trespassing’ the 12-mile limit. Unless Greece reacts with force, there will be no problem. But if it does, Turkey will have the right to retaliate accordingly. This is the worst-case scenario. But this would be possible only if all the bridges of dialogue and democracy between Turkey and Greece were destroyed.
Besides, the casus belli was just a medium used by the Parliament to draw the world’s attention to the issue. In 1997, however, Greece declared that it would avoid unilateral action on the issue, and Turkey announced that it wouldn’t adopt a violence-based policy. The last eight years in Turkish-Greek relations have served to prove that dialogue and compromise are far more effective at improving bilateral ties and solving disputes than military intervention, weapons and saber-rattling.”
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