|Friday, 21 February 2020|
Turkish Press Review, 98-12-10
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From: Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs <http://www.mfa.gov.tr>
Summary of the political and economic news in the Turkish press this morning
 ECEVIT PROPOSES DSP MINORITY GOVERNMENTPrime Minister-Designate Bulent Ecevit asked True Path Party (DYP) leader Tansu Ciller to support a minority government to be formed by his own Democratic Left Party (DSP). Ciller told Ecevit if he secures the support of all the parliamentary groups, then she would be prepared to extend the backing of the DYP for such a coalition. The Virtue Party (FP) says that the President should have never asked Ecevit to form the government in the first place.
Ciller and Ecevit met at Parliament, where the DYP leader told the Prime Minister-Designate that her party is against the formation of a coalition with the DSP and ANAP. She told reporters at a press conference after the meeting that the DYP wants a broad-based government where all the parties represented in Parliament are given Cabinet seats. Ecevit on the other and said he would now meet the leaders of other political parties and see if he can obtain support for a minority DSP government. /All papers/
 BUSINESSMEN SUPPORT ECEVITThe Turkish Industrialists' and Businessmen's Association (TUSIAD) reported that they supported the Democratic Left Party (DSP) leader Bulent Ecevit's "minority government" suggestion. They added that Bulent Ecevit was the ideal leader to be Prime Minister in Turkey at the moment. TUSIAD asked Turkish politicians to form a new government as soon as possible. /Hurriyet/
 TURKEY DOES NOT GO TO VIENNAForeign Ministry Deputy Spokesman Sermet Atacanli asserted yesterday that Turkey would not accept an invitation to the lunch during the Vienna summit or any other 'evasive formulae' regarding Turkey's bid for EU membership. Atacanli said that Turkey had two expectations from the Union -a legally-binding approval and acceptance of Turkey's candidacy, and as a natural result of this, the equal treatment of Turkey along with the other candidates. He emphasized that no other formula would satisfy Turkey, and added that the EU had not yet taken a clear stance.
Atacanli also noted that the conclusions reached at the EU Foreign Ministers' meeting held on Sunday and Monday in Brussels did not meet Turkey's expectations. "We hope that before the summit in Vienna the conclusions regarding Turkey will be modified. Otherwise, Turkey will not be in a position to change the attitude it adopted after the Luxembourg summit" Atacanli said. /All papers/
 CEM: IDEA FOR INTERNATIONAL TRIAL LOSING SUPPORTIn Istanbul, Foreign Minister Ismail Cem told a press conference yesterday that the idea for an international tribunal for the PKK leader Abdullah Ocalan appeared to be losing support. "Ocalan's trial in an international court without Turkey's consent will be nothing other than a commedy" Cem said upon his return from the NATO Foreign Ministers' meeting in Brussels. Cem noted that during his meeting with Italian Foreign Minister Lamberto Dini outside the summit, he had emphasized Ankara's determination to have Ocalan extradited to Turkey and try him according to Turkish laws. He also criticized Italy for continuing to treat Ocalan as a guest, and said that he had told Dini that Italy should not become 'the centre' of a terrorist organization and 'a trampoline' for terrorism.
Meanwhile, Dini said yesterday that Italy itself might try Ocalan. Italy could conduct the trial in accordance with a 1972 Council of Europe protocol allowing for the transfer of trials from one member nation to another, Dini said. In making the decision, officials would be taking into consideration the possible risk of terrorist attacks, he added. /All papers/
 MASKS ARE OFF: GERMANY AND FRANCE OBSTRUCT TURKEY'S CANDIDACYWith a letter addressed to the EU Term-President Klima in the wake of the Vienna Summit, Germany and France, who have great influence on every decision taken by the EU, undermined efforts to change Turkey's status by granting her a candidate membership. In a joint letter sent to the EU Term-President and Austrian Prime Minister, Victor Klima, on December 8, Chancellor Schroeder, who obtained votes from Turks in Germany by promising to support Turkey's EU membership, and French President Chirac, who expresses his alleged friendship with Turks on every occasion, claimed that there should be no new decisions concerning candidate countries, including Turkey, during the Vienna Summit on December 11. Schroeder and Chirac noted that the EU's process of expansion which involved 11 countries should proceed in a determined but realistic way, without any departure from their initial aims. Calling for the equal share of the financial burden of expansion by every country, the two leaders preferred to ignore Turkey's candidacy for membership from whom they extract an annual amount of $12 billion, used to finance the expansion, via the Customs Union between Turkey and the EU. /Turkiye/
 CEM: "ITALY IS A PKK BASE"The Turkish Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ismail Cem, who returned home from a meeting of the NATO Ministers of Foreign Affairs yesterday, said at Istanbul's Ataturk Airport that he had reported Turkey's worries concerning Italy's attitude to the PKK terrorist organization. Cem said: "I stressed Turkey's anxiety on Italy's becoming a base for a terrorist organization. I and my Italian counterpart agreed that Italy and Turkey should be continuously in contact to overcome our mutual problems." /Sabah/
 FRENCH MAGISTRATE INTERROGATES OCALANA French magistrate yesterday interrogated the PKK leader Abdullah Ocalan for a second time in the suburban Roman villa where he is being held. In his two-hour interrogation, prosecutor Jean Francois Ricard was seeking information on a number of PKK-related incidents in France, including extortion and other criminal activities. Ocalan's lawyer Luigi Saraceni and Judge Serenella Siliacom were also present during the questioning. Ocalan will also be interrogated by the Italian authorities concerning the forged passport he was using when he entered Italy. /All papers/
 EU COUNCIL TO DECIDE ABOUT OCALAN TODAYThe Delegates Committee of the European Council will decide about the lawsuit of Abdullah Ocalan today. It is expected that the Committee will convene the "Criminal Issues Committee" to take a decision on the issue. /Hurriyet/
 "ITALY NOT A STATE OF LAW ANYMORE"One of the most famous jurists in Italy, Stephano Rodota, said that Italy was not a state of law anymore. In his statement in La Repubblica newspaper Rodota said if Ocalan's extradition was not possible in line with "The European Convention Against Terrorism" then he should be tried in the country that he had sheltered in. Being against the idea of forming a special court to try Ocalan, Rodota added that the Constitution had become illegal in some political centres in Italy. /Hurriyet/
 TURKISH-SYRIAN AGREEMENTThe Turkish Foreign Ministry stated that the Adana Agreement signed between Turkey and Syria should function better. In a weekly press conference yesterday, Foreign Ministry Deputy Spokesman Sermet Atacanli, replied to questions regarding the implementation process of the Adana Agreement. Atacanli recalled that the Turkish President, Suleyman Demirel had noted during Egyptian President Husnu Mubarak's visit to Ankara, that the Adana Agreement should function better, and Atacanli pointed out that contacts with Syrian officials were continuing to that end. Atacanli also stressed the importance of the agreement, the Anatolia news agency reports.
 SECURITY PROTOCOL BETWEEN TURKEY AND IRANAt the end of the fifth meeting of the Turkish-Iranian High Security Commission, a security cooperation protocol was signed yesterday. The protocol was signed by the Turkish Interior Ministry Undersecretary, Yahya Gur, and the Security Deputy of the Iranian Interior Minister, Gulam Hussein Bolandiyan. Bolandiyan said in a statement following the signing ceremony that the protocol aimed to prohibit terrorist activities within each country's territories, the Anatolia news agency reports. Gur said for his part that the two countries should cooperate in the struggle against drug smuggling.
 TURKEY IN UPPER-MIDDLE INCOME CATEGORYTurkey has risen from a lower-middle income country to an upper-middle income country according to the World Bank's latest study of 1997 economic data. In the bank's latest 'global income map', a part of a report titled 'Knowledge for Development', Turkey's per capita income was put at $3,130. Countries are classified into four main groups by the World Bank, namely, low-income, lower-middle income, upper-income and high-income groups. Turkey ranks as the 48th richest country. /All papers/
 SPANISH COMPANY WINS $59 MLN TUPRAS TENDERThe Spanish company, Technicas Reunidas, has won the international bidding for the $59-million Tupras (Turkish Petroleum Refineries) Izmit Refinery Isomerization Plant contract, in a consortium formed with Entes Insaat. The contract was signed at a ceremony yesterday in Izmit between the consortium and Tupras. The project will be completed in 1999. The annual rise in the production of gasoline will be 200,000 tons by the year 2001. The project will recoup its costs in 5.9 years and will contribute $8.1 million to the national economy. /All papers/
 TURKISH EXPORTS RISETurkey's exports rose in some sectors during the first 11 months of this year. In the period between January and November, export rates increased by 17.7 % in the electronics sector and 13.6 % in the auto and auto-parts industry, meanwhile, textiles products and textile raw material exports rose by 9 % and 6.1 %. Among exporters' unions, the Union of East Anatolia Exporters showed the greatest increase for the year to date with exports up 13.9 %. The Aegean Exporters' Union followed East Anatolia with an 11.9 % increase. /Aksam/
 TEMIZEL: NO DEVALUATIONThere is no need for currency devaluation and the crisis in the textile sector does not stem from the Value-Added-Tax (VAT) rate, according to Finance Minister Zekeriya Temizel. Temizel warned banks not to demand the early repayment of loans over fears of a crisis that may never materialize and he warned them not to create risks for others, the Anatolia news agency reports. Temizel also dismissed calls for the TL to be devalued, in order to help exporters. "Turkey will maintain the exchange rate system, which is accepted by all international institutions and which is the most healthy one".
 DEMIREL OPENS SABANCI LYCEESPresident Suleyman Demirel officially opened the Beylerbeyi Lycee which bears the name of Haci Omer Sabanci, a prominent businessman who died in June of this year. In a brief address, Demirel stressed that the number of students registered in classes in primary school in Turkey in 1998 was the same as that for all of those registered in Germany, Britain and France. He also thanked the Sabanci family for its contributions to education. Demirel also opened the Dilek Sabanci Anatolia Trade Profession Lycee at Kucukbakkalkoy. Earlier in the day, the President participated in the opening of the Ferit Aysan Modern Living Primary School which was established by the Modern Living Support Association (CYDD). He emphasized the importance of cooperation between the public and private sectors over the construction of educational facilities. /All papers/
 HUMAN RIGHTS DAYToday is the 50th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. On December 10, 1948, the declaration that begins with the line, "All humans are born free, dignified and equal in terms of rights" was approved by a majority in the UN General Assembly. Many organizations are staging activities on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of the Human Rights Declaration. Apart from the press conference by Hikmet Sami Turk, the majority of these activities will be held by the Human Rights Association (IHD), the Turkish Human Rights Foundation (TIHV) and Mazlum Der. /All papers/
 DENKTAS MEETS PARTY LEADERSRauf Denktas, President of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC), yesterday received those political party leaders who had managed to win parliamentary seats in Sunday's general elections. Denktas is expected to assign Dervis Eroglu, leader of the National Unity Party (UBP), the task of forming the new government within the next few days. /Cumhuriyet/
 THREE SOLDIERS KILLEDAs a result of the clashes between terrorists and security forces a lieutenant, a policeman and a soldier were killed. Military sources reported that there were intense clashes between security forces and terrorists last night in the Erbaa and Tasova districts of Tokat. It was reported that clashes have been continuing in the region. /Sabah/
 TWO SECURITY OFFICIALS KILLED BY PKK TERRORISTS IN AMASYASecurity forces carrying out an operation in Durucu village, in Amasya, following a tip-off, entered into armed conflict with members of the TKP_ML-TIKKO illegal terrorist organization. In the conflict two of the security forces were killed and two wounded. Officials noted that operations were going on in the region while the wounded were taken to hospital. /Aksam/
 TURKISH FILMS WEEK IN LONDONTurkish Films Week was organized in London. The activities of the week started with a reception in London. Films by Turkish producers, Umur Turagay, Sunar Aytuna, Yilmaz Arslan are among the films to be on show in the Rio Cinema in London. /Hurriyet/
 "MEVLANA WEEK" STARTSThe ceremonies for the 725th anniversary of the passing away of Mevlana Celaleddin-i Rumi, the eminent Turkish Sufi and author of Mesnevi, one of the most popular works in world history, will be held between December 10-17 in Konya. During the week, 12 "semah"s will be performed and many other activities will be presented, including conferences, a book fair, and various exhibitions on Turkish handicrafts. Mevlana, who lived between 1207-1273, is adored for his philosophy of love and tolerance in all around the world today. /Turkiye/
 S-300 MISSILES TO ARRIVE ON CYPRUS IN THE NEW YEARJane's Defense Weekly published in England, wrote that S-300 missiles purchased from Russia by the Greek Cypriot Administration would come to the island from the beginning of the New Year. The news, based on statements by official sources in the Greek Cypriot Administration, stated that for every month the missiles stayed in Russia, the Greek Cypriot Administration had to pay for their storage. It was noted that the Greek Cypriot Administration leader had no intention of delaying the arrival of the missiles on the island. /Aksam/
 ARTICLE 312In his column Taha Akyol analyses the government request to bring onto the agenda the amendment to Article 312 of the Turkish Penal Code, and says:
"Is there a tacit compromise between the Virtue Party (FP), Motherland party (ANAP) and Democratic Left Party (DSP)? This comes to mind because the government asked for the amendment to Article 312, which would benefit many members of the FP, to be taken brought onto the agenda. This is of great importance for the FP, however the Secretary General of FP states that he does not have any information concerning the matter. He added that government may have felt the need to take steps towards democratization. State Minister Hikmet Sami Turk, who is a respected lawyer and has prepared the democratization package, is more interested in the content of the package rather than party interests. He says that they want to change not only the 312th Article of the Turkish Penal Code, but also the 159th with the Article concerning torture. He adds that they would also like to change the Code on the Trial of State Personnel.
This would mean that there will be changes on 'parole conditions' in favour of the convicts and Esber Yagmurdereli, a journalist and a writer, will be released. In the new arrangement constituting a danger to the public will be a condition for conviction, from 'provoking people by using religion or race' and this in turn may result in the release of former Istanbul Mayor Recep Tayyip Erdogan. Crimes of torture and ill-treatment are re-defined. These are appropriate changes in line with the principle of expanding freedom of expression". /Milliyet/
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