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Turkish Press Review, 07-01-05

Turkish Press Review Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

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

05.01.2007


CONTENTS

  • [01] PM ERDOGAN: "OUR PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE WON'T BE REVEALED BEFORE APRIL"
  • [02] FM GUL: "2007 WILL BE A YEAR BENEFITING EVERYONE"
  • [03] EGYPTIAN FOREIGN MINISTER TO VISIT ANKARA NEXT WEEK
  • [04] EU VISA SNAFU BLOCKS TURKEY-BULGARIA BORDER
  • [05] DECEMBER INFLATION FIGURES RELEASED
  • [06] ERDOGAN'S CRITICISMS OF WASHINGTON'S STANCE AGAINST THE PKK

  • [01] PM ERDOGAN: "OUR PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE WON'T BE REVEALED BEFORE APRIL"

    En route from Beirut, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan yesterday spoke with reporters about his visit to Lebanon, the terrorism issue and May's presidential election. Also speaking about his party's standing in the polls, Erdogan said, "The situation is very good now. Last month we got 30.4 percent when undecided voters are excluded. The percentage for the opposition parties is below that of the November 2002 elections (which brought the ruling party to power). It seems just two parties can get past the (10 percent) election threshold." He also said that his ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) has a presidential candidate but it won't be revealed before April and that the next president will be from this Parliament. Touching on recent developments in the Middle East, Erdogan said, "We will assume the role of mediation (in Lebanon) only if both sides seek this," and added, "Now we're trying to find out how we can help. We accepted the (US') Greater Middle East and North Africa Project (GME) for peace and development in the region and for freedom. We hope to speed up the democratization of the region through Turkey assuming an influential role." /Turkiye/

    [02] FM GUL: "2007 WILL BE A YEAR BENEFITING EVERYONE"

    Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul yesterday stated that disagreed with those saying that 2007 would be a "lost year" due to the presidential and general elections, saying, "2007 will also be a year benefiting everyone." Stating that four years ago Turkey faced great troubles, Gul explained, "We provided stability in Turkey again and we put its macroeconomic house in order. So I believe that our people will appreciate what we have done and the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) will get a second term as the ruling party." Also touching on recent developments in the Middle East, Gul said, "Everything is very critical in the Middle East," adding that all anyone wants is stability in Iraq and the Middle East. /Turkiye/

    [03] EGYPTIAN FOREIGN MINISTER TO VISIT ANKARA NEXT WEEK

    The Turkish capital next week will receive Egypt's Foreign Minister Ahmed Aboul Gheit, diplomatic sources at the Foreign Ministry in Ankara said on Thursday. During his official two-day visit, planned to take place on Tuesday and Wednesday, Gheit will hold talks with his Turkish counterpart, Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul, as well as other senior Turkish officials. However, as of yesterday, the details of his schedule were not yet clear. /Turkish Daily News/

    [04] EU VISA SNAFU BLOCKS TURKEY-BULGARIA BORDER

    The failure late last year of Turkey and European Union newcomer Bulgaria to agree on a new visa regime is causing long queues and blocked border checkpoints between the two countries, diplomatic sources said yesterday. Six months ago Sofia reportedly proposed to Ankara a new visa regime agreement, which included removing the visa requirement for Turkish transit passengers who already have a Schengen visa or reside in any EU member state. But Ankara only replied in late December, asking that the visa requirements for Turkish citizens carrying green passports be ended. /The New Anatolian/

    [05] DECEMBER INFLATION FIGURES RELEASED

    The Turkish Statistics Institute (TUIK) yesterday released its inflation figures for last month. Consumer price index (CPI) inflation in December rose 0.23 pct, pushing yearly CPI to 9.65 pct, while producer price index (PPI) inflation fell by 0.12 pct, pushing yearly PPI to 11.6 pct. The CPI target was 5 pct for last year. /Sabah/

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

    [06] ERDOGAN'S CRITICISMS OF WASHINGTON'S STANCE AGAINST THE PKK

    Columnist Orhan Birgit comments on Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan's criticisms of the US administration's stance against the terrorist PKK. A summary of his column is as follows:

    "Erdogan's recent remarks accusing the US administration of falling short in helping Turkey's fight against the terrorist PKK show Ankara's disappointment.

    People reading Erdogan's statements, which were made while traveling to Lebanon, could think that he needed to make things hot for the terrorist PKK, which is expected to resume its campaign in the spring.

    All Turkish citizens know that anti-terror coordinators, who were appointed last April after the US proposed it, thereby preventing Turkey from carrying out a cross-border operation against the PKK, haven't taken any concrete action.

    The anti-terror coordinators of Turkey and the US, Edip Baser and Joseph Ralston, met in Germany early last month. During their meeting, Baser showed Ralston concrete proof of the PKK's financial sources in Europe, while Ralston made commitments on the issue.

    Ralston made these commitments to buy time. During the last meeting of the National Security Council (MGK), it was stressed that Washington was told that two key PKK figures, Murat Karayilan and Cemil Bayik, were getting checkups in a hospital in northern Iraq and that Ankara wanted the US to hand them over to the Turkish government, but the US ignored Ankara's request.

    Although the anti-terror coordinators met periodically, they didn't get any concrete results. The PKK even reportedly used this situation in its propaganda, saying that Turkey wanted to bargain with it.

    Erdogan could have told the US administration about his disappointment through official channels, but if he had, then he couldn't have criticized the messages the US has been making to buy more time.

    Even though the anti-terror coordinators produced no concrete results in the fight against the terrorist PKK, it's worth knowing that our strategic ally is trying to stall on the issue."


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