|Monday, 24 February 2020|
Turkish Press Review, 99-02-04
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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
 OCALAN STUCK IN VICIOUS CIRCLEThe never-ending controversy concerning the whereabouts of the PKK leader, Abdullah Ocalan, grew yesterday with allegations that he is back in Russia again after having been refused entry by an array of European countries. The Russian Ambassador to Ankara, Alexander Lebedev, was summoned to the Foreign Ministry yesterday morning, and later in the day he had a meeting with Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit. Lebedev conveyed to Ecevit a verbal message from Russian Prime Minister Yevgeni Primakov asserting that Ocalan is not in Russia and will never be accepted there. The Russian Foreign Ministry yesterday also denied reports that Ocalan has returned to Russia.
The Turkish Foreign Ministry Spokesman, Sermet Atacanli, refrained from openly citing Russia as Ocalan's present address at a press conference yesterday. "It is not that easy to spot where he is. He is constantly trying to change his location and sometimes it is hard to obtain the relevant information from the related countries"; Atacanli said. He added that the Turkish Embassy in Minsk was in contact with Belarussian officials. Atacanli stressed that previously the Belarus government had promised not to let Ocalan into the country. Meanwhile, Italy will give its final response to Ocalan's demand for political asylum on February 24. /All papers/
 ECEVIT: "THE REALITY HAS COME OUT"In a speech before his parliamentary group yesterday, Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit stated that with Ocalan's stay in Italy and Russia many European politicians have come to know him better and they have seen 'how unbalanced and adventurous a terrorist he is'. Referring to Ocalan's flights from one country to another by private plane, Ecevit stated that the extent of the PKK's wealth has come out.
"Part of this money is dirty money, part of it is blood money. It was earned by blackmail, murder and drug trafficking. A large part of this money was used to poison Western youth"; Ecevit said. "Not only has Ocalan's real face been revealed, but the politicization efforts of the PKK will also weaken" he added. /All papers/
 "OCALAN WILL NOT BE IN ITALY"The Italian Minister of Interior Affairs, Rosa R. Jervolionio, said that they would never permit the chief of the PKK terrorist organization to re-enter Italy. Adding that all the borders were on the alert against Ocalan, Jervolioni said that an Italian court would discuss Ocalan's political asylum request on 24 February.
Meanwhile, a special radio station, Flash Radio, broadcasting in Athens, Greece, announced that Ocalan had arrived in Athens last Sunday and stayed for two days. The radio claimed that Ocalan met two PASOK deputies in Athens. /Turkiye/
 SUPPORT FOR TURKEY OVER OCALAN ISSUEOne of the leading leading newspapers, The Daily Telegraph, criticized Europe's attitude towards Turkey concerning the Ocalan issue. The paper said although the Italian and German goverments lamented terrorist activities and asked for international cooperation against terrorism, they did not show any determination over the Ocalan issue. It added that Turkey, which is a NATO member, had every right to criticize Europe.
Meanwhile, the Belgiam La Libre Belgique newspaper said that as a result of Turkey's firm stance on the Ocalan issue, the terrorist chief could not find any country to settle in. /Turkiye/
 LAWYER: OCALAN IS IN A SECURE PLACEThe lawyer to the PKK leader Abdullah Ocalan, Beritta Bohler, has noted that his client was in a process of continuously changing his location due to security reasons. She stated that Ocalan was in a country where he was in safety. She said that they aimed to petition the International Permanent Arbitration Tribunal in The Hague. /Hurriyet/
 OCALAN IS HELPING PKK'S DISINTEGRATIONThe Interior Minister, Cahit Bayar, yesterday criticized the West concerning the issue of the PKK leader, Abdullah Ocalan. He said that separatist activities were originating from abroad. Bayar noted that Ocalan's absence weakened the PKK terrorist organization.
Meanwhile, the Greeks also started to protest against Ocalan in Athens. It is reported that protestors gathered in Komondrou Square in Athens on January 27, 1999, and shouted slogans against the PKK terrorist organization and its leader, Abdullah Ocalan. They said: "We do not want the PKK". One of the most influential newspapers published in Greece, Eleftherotipia, said that people accused both the government and the Athens Mayor of extending support to PKK members and Kurdish immigrants. /Aksam/
 DEMIREL CALLS FOR CAREFUL ENERGY USEThe National Energy Productivity Congress was convened yesterday at Cankaya Palace. The Congress has been organized as part of the 18th annual Energy Saving Week. President Suleyman Demirel delivered a speech to the Congress in which he called for citizens to be thrifty in their energy use. He noted that people should be informed and should make a conscious effort to conserve energy. /All papers/
 ECEVIT VOWS TO CONTINUE FIGHT AGAINST FUNDAMENTALISMThe government yesterday said it would implement the recommendations of the National Security Council (NSC), pledging to stop any political parties from exploiting religion in the upcoming elections. Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit yesterday said the previous government had established a Coordination Council under the umbrella of the Prime Ministry to follow fundamentalist and separatist activities and to preserve the secular democratic regime. He said that this council was continuing its work.
Ecevit noted that a circular had been prepared concerning this matter and will be sent to all related institutions and also that all governors, district governors, police officers and judges will work together harmoniously in order to ensure a calm political climate for the elections in Turkey. /All papers/
 US REASSURES TURKEY AND IRAQThe US Secretary of State Spokesman, James Rubin, said that the US administration had not changed its attitude towards Incirlik Airbase. Rubin added that they certainly supported the territorial integrities of both Turkey and Iraq. Pointing out that Turkey was of vital importance in the NATO organization, Rubin noted that they welcomed Turkey's support for the application of the UN embargo against Iraq. /Turkiye/
 KARAYALCIN: "STRUGGLING AGAINST TERRORISM REQUIRES COOPERATION"The Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Commission of the Turkish Grand National Assembly (TGNA), Murat Karayalcin, said that Turkey's admonish of Damascus concerning terrorism last September had to be taken into consideration by all pf Turkey's neighbours. He said that Turkey outlined its stance towards the countries which supported or appeared to support terrorist activities. Karayalcin stressed that defeating terrorism required international cooperation. /Turkiye/
 CONSTITUTIONAL COURT OPENS CASE AGAINST HADEPTurkey's Constitutional Court yesterday opened a case against HADEP (People's Democracy Party) for its alleged links to Abdullah Ocalan's PKK terrorist organization, the Anatolia news agency reports. The charges were brought by Chief Prosecutor Vural Savas who accused HADEP of recruiting terrorists for the PKK. The Constitutional Court decided to officially notify HADEP of the charges against it, after which party leaders would be given 30 days to prepare their written defence.
Meanwhile, in the Southeast of the country, Turkish security forces have killed 14 PKK members in fighting, local authorities said yesterday. According to a statement issued by Emergency Rule authorities in Diyarbakir, the fighting took place on Tuesday in mountains close to where Turkey meets Iraq and Iran. It said two other PKK terrorists surrendered to security forces. The PKK leader Abdullah Ocalan's whereabouts are unknown since the Netherlands refused entry to a plane carrying him on Monday.
 TURKEY PROTESTS AGAINST REMARKS BY GREECEThe Foreign Ministry yesterday protested against comments by the Greek Foreign Minister and Parliament Speaker, accusing them of increasing tension between the two countries. Greek Foreign Minister Theodoros Pangalos earlier this week accused Turkey of having an expansionist policy toward Greece and Greek Parliament Speaker Apostolos Kaklamanis said Turkish aggression was forcing Greece to arm itself. "It seems that a search for tension and a trend of radicalism has once again surfaced in Greece", Sermet Atacanli, a Foreign Ministry Spokesman, told a news conference. /All papers/
 GREEK NEWSPAPER PRAISES TURKISH FOREIGN POLICYOne of the most influential newspapers published in Greece, Eleftherotipia, praised Turkish foreign policy. An article on 'The Limits of Turkish Power' devoted wide coverage to the achievements of Turkish foreign policy concerning Syria, Italy and Greece. The article noted that those who show Turkey among the Great Powers of the 21st Century were indeed right. The article stated that if Greece retreats from Turkish demands, it will become a Turkish satellite. /Hurriyet/
 GREEK-CYPRIOTS REQUESTS AN INTERNATIONAL FORCE FOR THE ISLANDYannakis Cassoulides, the Representative of the Greek-Cypriot Administration responsible for Foreign Affairs, said at a meeting in Brussels that an international military force sould be posted to the island. Cassoulides said that an international military force with the backing of the United Nations (UN) sould be drafted to on the island and Turkish and Greek forces sould be drawn back. He added that such a force would be established by NATO. Cassoulides noted that they would also extend their proposal to the US administration.
Meanwhile, Greek-Cypriot State Television will start broadcasting in Turkish in the next few weeks. The broadcasts will also be able to be watched on Southern Cyprus. /Turkiye/
 TURKEY, IRAN TO BOOST SECURITY TIESOn the first day of a visit of an Iranian delegation to Ankara, it was decided to further security cooperation between the two countries. The Iranian delegation was headed by Deputy Foreign Minister Mohsen Eminzade, while the Turkish group was chaired by Ambassador Ugur Ziyal, a Deputy Undersecretary at the Foreign Ministry. The Iranian delegation was received by Foreign Minister Ismail Cem and President Suleyman Demirel, to whom Eminzade conveyed a message from Iranian President Khatami concerning the situation in Northern Iraq. Following talks scheduled for Thursday that are to concentrate on economic issues, the Iranian delegation will return to Tehran. /All papers/
 NEZERITIS BIDS FAREWELL TO CEM AND YILMAZThe Greek Ambassador, Dimitris Nezeritis, whose term in Ankara will end in late February, paid farewell visits to Foreign Minister Ismail Cem and former Prime Minister Mesut Yilmaz yesterday. Nezeritis told reporters at the Foreign Ministry: "I will disappoint you, but this time I was not summoned to the Foreign Ministry. You know I will leave Turkey soon, and I merely paid a farewell visit to the Foreign Minister". /All papers/
 LEFT-WING PARTIES WILL FADE AWAY IN TWO-TIER ELECTIONSAccording to estimates based on the results of the last elections, the left-wing parties will fade away to a great extent in a possible two-tier election. If the local elections are held in two stages, the competition in the second stage will most probably be battled out between the FP (the Virtue Party) and the center-right parties in 32 provinces, between the center-right and center-left in 22 provinces, between the FP and the center-left parties in 4 provinces, and between the two parties of the center-right in 12 provinces. In this respect, the competition for the Mayorships of Ankara and Istanbul is expected to be between the FP and ANAP (the Motherland Party). /Cumhuriyet/
 "THE INFRASTRUCTURE OF THE KURDISH STATE HAS BEEN PREPARED"Mustafa Ziya, the representative of the Iraqui Turkman Front (ITC), claimed that the infrastructure of a Kurdish state in Northern Iraq has long been prepared by virtue of the foreign non-governmental organizations (NGOs). Ziya said, "We are against the division of Iraq. However, the infrastructure of a possible Kurdish state with its ministries, army, and local administrations has already been prepared." In an interview with the `Cumhuriyet' daily, Ziya noted that the Turkman population in the region nearly reaches the Kurdish population. He also maintained that they demand their national and ethnic rights in terms of free political organization expressing their Turkman identity, and Turkman schools where the language of instruction would beTurkish. /Cumhuriyet/
 HARDY'S LAST TOUR IN TURKEYThe Chief of the IMF Turkey-Desk, Martin Hardy's term in office will end following his visit to Turkey. The IMF delegation headed by Hardy met a Turkish delegation headed by the General Director of Ziraat Bank, Selcuk Demiralp, yesterday. During the meeting, Ziraat Bank's agricultural subsidiary policies were reviewed. Hardy has been the Chief of the Turkey-Desk for nearly four years. Carlo Coterelli, who will take over the task from Hardy, is also participating in the meetings. /Hurriyet/
 DINCMEN: "THE WORLD EXPECTS STRUCTURAL REFORMS IN TURKEY"The Treasury Undersecretary Yener Dincmen said that international institutions and financial circles wanted Turkey to achieve structural reforms. Recalling that the agreement between Turkey and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) was valid for only one-and-a-half years, Dincmen noted that they had discussed the 1999 financial year with the members of the delegation. Stressing that they were waiting for waited the Banking Law and social security reforms to be passed by Parliament, Dincmen said that these reforms would be welcomed as a positive development in world financial and banking circles. /Milliyet/Turkiye/
 ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL COUNCIL (ESK) TO MEET ON MONDAYThe Economic and Social Council (ESK), a body comprised of the representatives of the labour, the employers and the government, will hold a meeting on Monday, February 8, under the chairmanship of Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit. It is reported that the parties in the Council are continuing their studies on Monday's agenda. The preliminary agenda is as follows: 1.Short-, medium-, and long-term policies to provide foreign funds and implement structural reforms to bring real interest rates to reasonable levels; 2. Measures to regulate the domestic debt mechanisms in compliance with the economic and social balance in the first months of 1999; 3. The ways to ensure high rates of economic growth alongside the maintenance of the relatively low rates of inflation in recent months; 4. The impact of the global crisis on employment, with specific emphasis on the possible steps to be taken to maintain the structural competitiveness of the Turkish economy together with the prevention of unemployment; 5. The reasons for and possible measures against the impact of the global crisis on particular sectors of the economy. /Cumhuriyet/
 CONSUMER INFLATION AT 65.9 %Consumer prices rose 4.8 % in January bringing the annual inflation rate to 65.9 %, while the annual wholesale inflation rate has fallen to 50 %, the Anatolia news agency reports. According to figures released by the State Institute of Statistics, wholesale prices rose by 3.6 % in the first month of the year.
 OECD DELEGATION TO TURKEYA six-member delegation of the Economic Cooperation and Development Organization (OECD) is due to come to Istanbul today. The delegation will evaluate the developments in 1998 and expectations in 1999. OECD members will meet Minister of State Responsible for Economy, Hikmet Ulugbay, the Minister of Finance, Zekeriya Temizel and representatives of the Tresasury, Central Bank, Privatization Administration and banks. The delegation will leave Turkey on 12 February. /Turkiye/
 ARCHITECTS' SOLIDARITY FOR BAKU-CEYHAN PIPELINEIt was reported that the Architects' Chambers in Turkey and Azerbaijan had signed a protocol to endorse the Baku-Ceyhan pipeline project due to last month. The "cultural cooperation and solidarity protocols" among Turkish and Azeri architects emphasize that the Baku-Ceyhan pipeline project, considered an alternative for the transportation of the Caspian oil to the Mediterranean via the Straits, is not a mere economic target but a "civilization project" for the whole humanity for it will save the Straits, a world heritage. /Cumhuriyet/
 NEW EFFORTS IN TRANSPORTATIONThe Transport Minister H. Basri Aktan, said that they aimed to increase the capacity of the Turkish Railways in 1999. Moreover, he added, they would modernize the railways system in Turkey. Aktan noted that one of the most important projects they would like to carry out was the Kars-Tibilisi line, which would link Turkey to the Turkish-Speaking Republics via Caucasia. /Turkiye/
 TURKS ARE BECOMING GOVERNORS IN BULGARIAFollowing a new law promulgated in Bulgaria, which grants new rights to people of Turkish origin, Turks will be able to become governors and deputy governors. The Head of the National Rights and Freedoms Movement, Razgrad Deputy Guner Tahir, said that people of Turkish origin would be able to become deputy governors initially in Kircaali, Razgrad and Shumen by next week. Tahir added: "Turks will be able to become civil servants and even head of the departments in the Ministries of the Interior and National Defence and others. Turks will also be able to work in Customs and at border gates". /Hurriyet/
 DEMIRBANK IN SOFIAEspecially during the last two years, the Turkish banking sector has been interested in Bulgaria where Turkish investments are increasing day by day. Following Ziraat Bank, Demirbank will also open a branch in Sofia. The Sofia branch of Demirbank, with a total capital of DM 15 million, is expected to be in service on March 22. /Hurriyet/
 INVESTMENT IN AZERBAIJANSome Turkish businessmen have decided to open new factories in Azerbaijan. Businessman Halit Narin has decided to construct a textile manufacturing plant, Melih Sipahioglu will concentrate on fruit-juice, Ismail Alapala will build bakeries and Azmi Ofluoglu has decided to establish a private hospital in Azerbaijan. The Turkish businessmen will go to Azerbaijan on 15 February to discuss the details of their projects with Azerbaijani President Haydar Aliyev and other related Azerbaijani officials. /Milliyet/
 DRUG RAID IN KILISDuring a raid in Kilis, 50 kilos of hashish were seized by gendarmery teams. Three people were taken into custody regarding the incident. Officials noted that the hashish had been brought from Iran, the Anatolia news agency reports.
 FRENCH SUGAR COMPANY IN TURKEYThe sugar processing machines for the Aksaray Sugar Factory, which is still under contruction, have been brought from France. The factory is a joint venture between the French Union SDA and the Turkish private company, Turkseker. The factory will provide job opportunities for 500 persons and will be opened in October, 2000. /Milliyet/
 TURKISH FOOD IN EUROPEAN KITCHENSA total of 660 different kinds of foodstuff under the name of "Baktat Food" produced by the Sungurlu Baklan Brothers in Sungurlu and Gemlik, have been exported to eight European countries since 1995. "Baktat Food which was awarded ISO 9001 status is produced under supervision by the Food Engineering Department of the Agricultural Faculty of Uludag University. The firm, which aims to increase the different types of foodstuff produced to 1001 in 1999, has an of 150 million DM annual export revenue. /Turkiye/
 LYKIA WORLD, THE PRIDE OF THE MEDITERRANEANClub Lykia World in Fethiye_Oludeniz, has been selected as the best tourism establishment in the Mediterranean countries. According to the 65-criterion assessment of the German Quality Control Foundation Stiftung Warentest, Club Lykia World is the only "excellent" establishment among 35 other touristic resorts determined through pre-selection. /Sabah/
 MORE SNOW AND RAIN EXPECTEDCold weather will continue until the weekend in Central and Northern parts of Turkey pulling temperatures below seasonal averages, the Meteorology Department reported. The Northern parts of Central Anatolia and the Black Sea region have experienced considerable snowfall while rain continues to fall in the Eastern Black Sea region. The heavy snowfall has blocked many roads in Thrace and efforts are continuing to clear the roads connecting villages to the main towns. /All papers/
 FROM THE COLUMNS ... FROM THE COLUMNS ... FROM THE COLUMNS
 AN INTERVIEW WITH ECEVIT - BY FIKRET BILA (MILLIYET)Fikret Bila, a columnist in the `Milliyet' daily, reflects on his short interview with Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit concerning Turkey's current problems at national and international levels. Bila writes:
"Is Ecevit still hopeful about the enactment of the `two-tier' system? `No', says the Prime Minister, `this is a distant possibility from now on. We were unable to persuade Ms. Ciller, the True Path Party (DYP) leader'. Ecevit says that this may be because she does not dare to accept such an enactment in the face of the alleged possibility of the annulment of a two-tier election. He adds that he does not believe the Constitutional Court would abolish a two-tier election. Anyway, following Ciller's stance, it becomes impossible to pass this draft in Parliament.
Then, we move on to foreign policy matters. Ecevit pays close attention to the change in Baghdad's attitude towards the PKK. He notes that the Saddam administration has recently begun to practice a friendly approach towards the PKK. Ecevit describes this as more `physical support' than `overt cooperation'. He also notes that the US planes participating in the operations from the Incirlik base might have had a certain influence on this change of heart. I ask him whether the Iraqui policy of the US is compatible with the interests of Turkey in the region. He says that he is not convinced that the US has a proper plan to overthrow Saddam. Therefore, Turkey should put a plan into action both for Iraq and the US that will ensure democratization in Iraq without the risk of division and a political vacuum. In this respect, he emphasizes that the question should be solved not by means of weapons but through legitimate politics. Ecevit says, `This is the alternative that we should impose on the Baghdad administration. The Iraqui regime is not a modern one, even compared to any other regime in the Middle East. The Iraqui administration is unjust towards its own people. However, the uncertainty of the US policy towards Iraq may result in the division of this country, and that may provide the basis for the constitution of a Kurdish state, even if it had not been envisioned by the US.' "
 ICEBERG PEOPLE - BY ERTUGRUL OZKOK (HURRIYET)Ertugrul Ozkok, a columnist from the daily 'Hurriyet' newspaper, says the following in his article today:
"I have been thinking for the last three days. What was the last act of Baris Manco? He had no cassette selling millions. He had no TV shows attracting a varied audience. Then, why is there a huge flow of love for him from the people? Now, everywhere his cassettes are being played. People from every walk of life come together in sorrow at his death. We have earlier experienced this sorrow. In the death of Adnan Kahveci. When Kahveci died in a traffic accident, we all grieved for him very much.
These are iceberg people. We are satisfied with their views on the surface of the water while they are living. But one day, when they die then we discover that a wonderful spirit was beneath the water. Yesterday, Adnan Kahveci; today, Baris Manco."
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