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Turkish Press Review, 05-05-12

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

12.05.2005

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

CONTENTS

  • [01] ERDOGAN SET FOR TWO-DAY VISIT TO HUNGARY
  • [02] GUL CONTINUES SOUTHEASTERN EUROPEAN TOUR
  • [03] REHN: “TURKEY’S EU TALKS WILL BEGIN AS SCHEDULED”
  • [04] IRAQI PM TO VISIT ANKARA
  • [05] ECHR TO RULE ON OCALAN CASE TODAY
  • [06] ERDOGAN REBUKES UNIVERSITY RECTOR
  • [07] TUSIAD DELEGATION VISITS WASHINGTON
  • [08] IMF APPROVES TURKEY’S LETTER OF INTENT FOR $10 BLN LOAN AGREEMENT
  • [09] DERVIS DELIVERS FAREWELL SPEECH IN PARLIAMENT
  • [10] BAYAR QUITS DYP
  • [11] FRENCH DEPUTIES ARGUE AGAINST TURKEY’S EU MEMBERSHIP BID
  • [12] HISTORIC COUNCIL OF EUROPE MEETING SET FOR NEXT WEEK
  • [13] TURKEY’S COMPETITIVE STRENGTH GROWS
  • [14] US CONGRESSMAN: “TURKEY’S SYRIA POLICY IS UNACCEPTABLE”
  • [15] EMINE ERDOGAN TO VISIT SYRIA
  • [16] FROM THE COLUMNS… FROM THE COLUMNS… FROM THE COLUMNS…
  • [17] WILL WE BE INFECTED BY THE CROATIAN SYNDROME? BY SEMIH IDIZ (MILLIYET)
  • [18] THE SEPTEMBER 11 LOGIC BY ERGUN BABAHAN

  • [01] ERDOGAN SET FOR TWO-DAY VISIT TO HUNGARY

    Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan is set to travel to Hungary today to pay an official visit. During his two-day stay, Erdogan will meet with President Ferenc Madl, Parliament Speaker Katalin Szili and Premier Ferenc Gyurcsany. In addition, on his last day, Erdogan is expected to visit historical and cultural sights in Budapest and Zigetvar. /Turkiye/

    [02] GUL CONTINUES SOUTHEASTERN EUROPEAN TOUR

    After completing his contacts in Romania, Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul yesterday traveled to Ukraine to pay a two-day visit. As part of his talks in Kiev, today Gul is expected to meet with his Ukrainian counterpart Boris Tarasyuk, as well as President Victor Yushchenko, Premier Yulia Timosenko and Parliament Speaker Volodimir Lytvyn. The Turkish foreign minister is set to proceed to the Autonomous Crimean Republic tomorrow to meet with senior Crimean officials. /Turkiye/

    [03] REHN: “TURKEY’S EU TALKS WILL BEGIN AS SCHEDULED”

    In response to recent calls in Europe for the postponement of Turkey’s European Union accession talks, EU Commissioner for Enlargement Olli Rehn said yesterday that the talks would begin on Oct. 3, as scheduled at last December’s EU summit. After meeting with Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul on the sidelines of a summit of the South East European Cooperation Process (SCEECP) in Bucharest, Rehn said that since Ankara would conclude the requirements of legal reforms and sign the harmonization protocol extending the Ankara Agreement, its negotiations would begin on time. For his part, Gul said that Turkey had long exerted efforts for a settlement on Cyprus and urged the EU to keep its promises made to the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) before last year’s referendum on the island. Stressing that it was not easy for a country of 70 million to unify with the EU, Gul acknowledged the difficulties on the road to the membership, then added, “However, we’ll overcome all these difficulties by working altogether.” /Turkiye/

    [04] IRAQI PM TO VISIT ANKARA

    Iraqi Prime Minister Ibrahim al-Jaafari is expected to visit Ankara next week. Jaafari is set to meet with President Ahmet Necdet Sezer, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul. Recent developments in Iraq, Kirkuk and bilateral relations will be up for discussion. /Star/

    [05] ECHR TO RULE ON OCALAN CASE TODAY

    The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) is set to deliver its final ruling on the Abdullah Ocalan case today, a decision which could possibly lead to the terrorist leader’s retrial in Turkey. Ocalan claims that Turkey breached international rules on his transfer to Imrali prison in 1999, denying him the right to a fair trial and preventing his attorneys from contacting him after his detention. In March 2003, the ECHR agreed with Ocalan that his 1999 sentence came "at the outcome of an unfair trial." However, the court also rejected his complaint about the conditions of his detention. Both the Turkish authorities and Ocalan appealed against these rulings. Turkish Land Forces Commander Gen. Yasar Buyukanit yesterday remarked that both the Turkish nation and Europe know that the Turkish Armed Forces (TSK) believes that Ocalan must not be retried as his claims are untrue and unacceptable. First Army Commander Gen. Hursit Tolon also argued that the terrorist leader had been tried in line with Turkey’s Constitution and his punishment conforms with the conscience of the Turkish nation. In addition, earlier this week Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul said that even if Ocalan, whose crimes are known by the entire world, were tried a hundred times, he would get the same penalty. /Cumhuriyet/

    [06] ERDOGAN REBUKES UNIVERSITY RECTOR

    Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan yesterday attended the ground-breaking ceremony of a new Engineering-Architecture Faculty building at Bolu Izzet Baysal University. However, university Rector Yasar Akabiyik and his vice chancellors boycotted the ceremony to protest the premier’s allegedly anti- Ataturkist stance and policies. “I came here today as the prime minister of the Republic of Turkey, not as a political party leader,” Erdogan said in his speech. “Thus, the rector is being disrespectful towards this country and its premier. This is unacceptable.” /All Papers/

    [07] TUSIAD DELEGATION VISITS WASHINGTON

    A Turkish Industrialists’ and Businessmen’ Association (TUSIAD) delegation is currently visiting Washington to discuss Turkey’s political and economic issues with US officials. The delegation held meetings with members of the House of Representatives’ Turkish-American Caucus as well as Jewish American groups, and also organized a panel on Turkish-US relations attended by former US Ambassador to Ankara Marc Grossman. US officials and bureaucrats complained that Turkey is frequently unpredictable and that Ankara had failed to make effective moves to mend fences between the two countries. Addressing the TUSIAD panel, Grossman said that Turkey’s European Union membership carries great importance for the US. /Milliyet/

    [08] IMF APPROVES TURKEY’S LETTER OF INTENT FOR $10 BLN LOAN AGREEMENT

    The International Monetary Fund yesterday announced that it had approved a $10 billion loan agreement for Turkey. An amount equivalent to $837.5 million will be made available immediately, with the remaining balance to be distributed in 11 equal installments. The IMF also agreed to delay about $3.8 billion of Turkey's debt repayments to the fund arising in 2006. “Turkey's economic performance is at its strongest in a generation,” Fund Managing Director Rodrigo de Rato said after the IMF Executive Board meeting. “Through their strong policies, the Turkish authorities have transformed Turkey's economic performance, while reforms associated with EU accession negotiations hold out the promise for further economic advance. Turkey deserves the support of the international community on the strength of its impressive track record under the last Fund-supported program and the policies proposed under the new arrangement. The challenge now for the authorities is to implement the new program in full in order to sustain and build on this recent success.” Stating that Turkey’s debt to the IMF would fall by half after the standby deal, Economy Minister Ali Babacan yesterday said that Turkey could pay the rest of its debt to the IMF with its own resources after 2008. He added that since Turkey’s economic program was entirely prepared by Turkish officials, the government fully supports the program. /Aksam, Hurriyet/

    [09] DERVIS DELIVERS FAREWELL SPEECH IN PARLIAMENT

    New head of the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) Kemal Dervis yesterday addressed Parliament to bid farewell. During his speech, Dervis stated that he would represent Turkey at his new post and thanked everybody for their support. He also urged Turkey to continue working towards its goal of European Union full membership. “We need to take part in the EU’s decision-making mechanism as a full member. Otherwise, the Meric River between Turkey and Greece will become a sort of Iron Curtain,” said Dervis. /Sabah/

    [10] BAYAR QUITS DYP

    Mehmet Ali Bayar resigned from the True Path Party (DYP) yesterday, just three days before the party’s regular congress. He hold reporters that the DYP had failed to make changes and renew itself and that it was with regret that he had decided to step down. “No one has right to claim that the party is experiencing a renewal process,” added Bayar, a former DYP deputy chairman. /Turkiye/

    [11] FRENCH DEPUTIES ARGUE AGAINST TURKEY’S EU MEMBERSHIP BID

    Looking towards France’s May 29 referendum on the European Union Constitution, a group of 25 French deputies yesterday published an opinion piece in French daily Le Figaro critical of Turkey. The piece entitled, “How could we accept those who say: Our minarets are our bayonets,” urged the French public to reject Turkey’s EU membership in favor of a “special partnership” arrangement. The title refers to a poem publicly recited seven years ago by Recep Tayyip Erdogan, before he became prime minister and disavowed a number of his earlier views. /Cumhuriyet/

    [12] HISTORIC COUNCIL OF EUROPE MEETING SET FOR NEXT WEEK

    The Third Council of Europe Summit will be held in Warsaw, Poland next Monday and Tuesday, where Turkey will be represented by Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan. The summit is important for discussing the period following last December’s European Union summit, the issue of PKK terrorist group leader Abdullah Ocalan’s retrial and the Armenian issue. In addition, the council’s future role in Europe and its contribution to the effectiveness of the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) will also be discussed. /Star/

    [13] TURKEY’S COMPETITIVE STRENGTH GROWS

    A Swiss institution International Institute for Management Development’s (IMD) 2005 World Competitiveness Report says that Turkey raised its competitive strength over the last year. The report indicated that Turkey ranked 48 in the IMD’s list of 60 important economies this year, up from 55 last year. Over 300 criteria under four main headings, namely economic performance, public and private sector productivity, and infrastructure, were taken into consideration in the ranking. /Star/

    [14] US CONGRESSMAN: “TURKEY’S SYRIA POLICY IS UNACCEPTABLE”

    Turkey’s Syria policy is unacceptable, yesterday argued Congressman Robert Wexler, co-chair of the US House of Representatives Turkish-American Caucus. Addressing a House International Relations Committee hearing on Turkey, Wexler strongly criticized Ankara’s Syria policy. “While the US is trying to launch important initiatives against Syria’s attitudes on terrorism and Lebanon, and Saudi Arabia and Egypt are already lending their full support to Washington, Turkey’s Syria policy is unacceptable,” he argued. /Milliyet/

    [15] EMINE ERDOGAN TO VISIT SYRIA

    Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s wife Emine Erdogan is to pay a visit to neighboring Syria on May 20-22 as a guest of the country’s first lady Asma Assad, the wife of Syrian President Bashar Assad. Erdogan is expected to tout Turkey’s EU membership bid and democratization efforts to Syrian officials in an attempt to reinforce her husband’s efforts to promote Turkey on the international stage. Her visit will also be a distinctive foreign policy initiative as she will travel to Damascus without Premier Erdogan at her side. /Milliyet/

    [16] FROM THE COLUMNS… FROM THE COLUMNS… FROM THE COLUMNS…

    [17] WILL WE BE INFECTED BY THE CROATIAN SYNDROME? BY SEMIH IDIZ (MILLIYET)

    Columnist Semih Idiz comments on the European Union membership bids of Croatia and Turkey. A summary of his column is as follows:

    “European Union Ambassador to Croatia Jacques Wunenburger said recently that the latest public opinion polls show that more than half of the Croatian public doesn’t want to join the European Union, something never before seen in a candidate country. The Ante Gotovina issue lies at the heart of this situation. Gen. Gotovina is wanted by The Hague’s War Crimes Tribunal for committing war crimes against Serbians during the Balkan wars. However, the Croatian public considers him a hero, so Zagreb hasn’t delivered him to the court. It only claims to not know where he is. However, the tribunal even found out that the government is paying a regular salary to him. In this situation, Britain, France and Germany are preventing the European Commission from starting membership negotiations with Zagreb. The stance of such EU countries as Hungary and Austria favoring Croatia is of no use. Most Croatians, who surrendered themselves to extreme nationalism due to the Yugoslavian war, say in this situation that they don’t want to join the EU.

    A unilateral stance concerning the Armenian genocide claims, promises about the Cyprus issue which weren’t kept, the Kurdish issue and now PKK terrorist group leader Ocalan’s possible retrial… With all these issues, could Turkey experience a similar syndrome? Considering the opposition Republican People’s Party’s (CHP) up-in-arms stance about his retrial, we can say that Turkey might experience a Croatian syndrome as well. So, would this be a gain or loss for Turkey? This issue is first of all our problem not with the EU, but with the Council of Europe, which we’ve been a member of for 50 years. In other words, if Turkey decides to take a different road on this issue due to its national sensitivities, first of all it would open its place into the Council of Europe to discussion. In short, retreating from the council would be moving away from Europe. For Croatia, which has always been a part of Europe’s general history and cultural, religious and social structure, the same doesn’t hold. In other words, Croatia can easily go back to Europe in the future. However, for Turkey, whose ‘Islamic color’ is very clear in the political sense and whose democratic development isn’t yet complete, it would be more difficult.

    Of course, as a nation, we might prefer this. Actually if a nation most of which is unfamiliar with Europe culturally supports this choice, then Turkey will have to determine its place in the world again. This situation doesn’t necessarily have to be bad for most of the population. However, the CHP, which has a tendency towards demagoguery, or certain parts of society might not be pleased with this. Therefore, if we are going to get infected by the Croatian syndrome, we should carefully consider its meanings for Turkey very well.”

    [18] THE SEPTEMBER 11 LOGIC BY ERGUN BABAHAN

    Columnist Ergun Babahan comments on an opinion piece published yesterday in the French Daily Le Figaro about Turkey’s European Union membership. A summary of his column is as follows:

    “There is a strong lobby which wants to make Turkey pay for the tensions of others. This group, which wants to tie Turkey’s membership to the critical European Union referendum, undermines the idea that beliefs should coexist in peace. The article published yesterday under the headline ‘How Can We Accept Those Who Say “The Minarets are our Bayonets” to the EU?’ is the most striking example of this.

    Actually the ultimate goal of the authors of this article is to enable the EU to continue its path without any growing pains. It seems that the parliamentarians, fearing that a ‘yes’ vote may not emerge from the May 29 referendum, are trying to stop Turkey with these methods. This piece has no value either morally or legally. It only serves to offend Turkey and the Turks.

    Turkey, which set its sights on European Union membership back in 1963, has made much progress over 40 years which will make it a part of Europe. Those who directly target the political power in Turkey and its leaders overlook an important historical truth:

    Keeping Turkey outside the EU, would fuel the clash between religions. The real thing that the EU should consider is the immutable quality of the Turkish Republic. On the contrary, shutting Turkey outside Europe may endanger the secular and democratic nature of Turkey.

    If a party against the secular system were to come to power here, such a situation could be overcome by democratic methods, as in Australia, not by shutting Turkey out.

    Anybody who claims to be intellectual must play their role in preventing repetitions of September 11.”

    ARCHIVE

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