|Friday, 21 February 2020|
Turkish Press Review, 99-02-05
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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
 CLINTON: "TURKISH-GREEK WAR COULD EMERGE"The US President Bill Clinton said that the Kosovo crisis had the potential of bringing Turkey and Greece, two NATO allies, face-to-face. Replying to questions posed by journalists, Clinton noted that the Balkans were a powder keg and said that if ethnic hatred in the region was not overcome, a wider conflict and a war could emerge. Clinton added that the Kosovo problem should be solved, if not, the conflict could spread to Albania and Macedonia. Meanwhile, US State Secretary Madeleine Albright stated that if the violence in Kosovo spread to Albania and Macedonia, this would affect Turkey and Greece. Albright said: "In this situation, an exodus of immigrants could result and terrorists will have more opportunity for drug trafficking". /Hurriyet/
 SIMITIS: "S-300 WERE ORDERED PREVIOUSLY"Greek Prime Minister Kostas Simitis said that an order to purchase Russian-made S-300 missiles was given by the previous government of Papandreu. Simitis replied to questions on a private TV channel two days ago and he defended the decision to cancel the deployment of S-300 missiles on Southern Cyprus. /Hurriyet/
 TURKISH ARMY IS A BRIDGE FOR PEACEThe Turkish Armed Forces has signed 97 peace agreements so far despite the fact that Turkey is located at the centre of the Balkans, Caucasia and the Middle East crisis triangle. According to the Office of the Chief of General Staff, the Turkish Armed Forces has signed Friendship, Cooperation, Military, Education and Science Agreements with almost 100 countries all around the world. /Sabah/
 ECEVIT: "TURKEY HAS NO REGIME PROBLEM"Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit said in his press statement yesterday in Ankara that he did not have any concerns over the secular democratic system in Turkey. He added that his government would take Turkey to the 18 April elections in peace and he believed that the elections would be held in a democratic environment. Ecevit stressed that democracy had already been firmly established in Turkey. /Turkiye/Sabah/
 COUNCIL OF MINISTERS MEETINGZekeriye Temizel, Minister of Finance, speaking on the issue of the Banks Draft Law, said "the Draft Law will be discussed in the Parliament before it recess", reported tha Anatolia news agency. Speaking to journalists after the Council of Ministers Meeting, Temizel said that an agreement had been reached on the issue of the Banks Law adding that the "agenda of the meeting would be determined on Thursday. Yet, this law will be taken up in any case before Parliament breaks up prior to the election campaign period.
 CINDORUK IS AGAINST 18 APRIL ELECTIONSThe Leader of the Democrat Turkey Party (DTP), Husamettin Cindoruk, claimed that the coming 18 April elections would be harmful to the democratic regime in Turkey. Cindoruk pointed out that President Suleyman Demirel's calls for the application of the two-tier election system should be seriously taken into consideration. He warned that Turkish democracy should not be bound solely to elections because no election strategies had been decided yet. He added that the parties should take measures against anti-democratic, anti-republican circles while competing against them in the elections unless the regime was damaged. /Sabah/
 KUTAN CRITICIZES ECEVITConcerning Prime Minister Ecevit's recent decree on reactionary movements and the possible measures to prevent religious exploitation of politics, Recai Kutan, the leader of the Virtue Party (FP), said: "The real reactionaries promulgate decrees". Kutan argued that the real danger is not the alleged religious exploitation of politics but rather the incorporation of atheism into politics. /Aksam/
 OCALAN'S REVENGE THROUGH DRUG SMUGGLINGThe PKK leader, Abdullah Ocalan, will take his revenge on Europe, which did not grant him political asylum, through drug smuggling. According to intelligence services, Ocalan has given the order to its organization to increase its activities in the drug trade in Europe. /Hurriyet/
 OCALAN IS NOT IN ITALYItalian Interior Minister Ruso Jervolino said that the PKK leader, Abdullah Ocalan, was not in Italy and added: "Ocalan's arrival in Italy is impossible. All border gates are on the alert".
Meanwhile, Greek Prime Minister Ksotas Simitis made a statement on the Ocalan issue yesterday and said that they did not want him. Simitis added: "If Ocalan arrives in Greece, we would have played into Turkey's hands because she claims that Greece is boosting the Kurdish problem".
On the other hand, a Russian newspaper, Izvestia, noted that Russia has been mentioned as the address of Ocalan since the beginning. The newspaper said: "The Russian Foreign Ministry and Intelligence Service have not been able to satisfy Turkey with their statements. Recently, Savosleyka Military Airport has been shown as the last leg of Ocalan's journey". /Hurriyet/
 BARZANI: "OCALAN IS MORE DANGEROUS THAN SADDAM"In his speech on Kurdistan TV (KTV) broadcasting in Northern Iraq, the leader of the Iraqi Kurdistan Democratic Party (IKDP), Mesut Barzani, said that thousands of people had been forced to leave their homes or be killed in the region by the PKK. He added that the PKK was more harmful than Saddam Hussein in so far as the Kurdish population was concerned.
Meanwhile, the Danish Foreign Affairs Minister, Peterson, said that they did not want Ocalan in their country. The Belarussian Ambassador to Ankara, Nikolia Lepesko, refuted the claims that Ocalan was in their country. After meeting the Ministry of Foreign Affairs Undersecretary, Faruk Lologlu, Lepesko said that they assured Turkey that Ocalan cannot be officially settled in Belarussia. Lepesko noted that the Belarussian administration was firmly against Ocalan's arriving in Minsk.
Meanwhile, PKK supporters in Europe threatened European countries, especially Italy, concerning Abdullah Ocalan's future. According to the Italian L'UNITA newspaper if something bad happened to Ocalan, Italy would be held partly responsible for this unwanted incident. Quoting the words of the PKK representative in Italy, the paper reported that chaos would be created throughout Europe if something bad happened to Ocalan. The representative added that they were ready to fight for their leader, reported the paper. /Sabah/ Turkiye/
 ALBRIGHT CRITICIZES ITALY AND GERMANY OVER OCALANThe US Secretary of State, Madeleine Albright, demanded that every country try Ocalan. It was reported that, speaking before a special commission in bringing the Senate, Albright said, "We are asking everybody to cooperate in bringing about the trial of Ocalan. Germany could not evaluate the recent opportunity to bring Ocalan before the court, while both Turkey and Italy were unable to reach a consensus on how to bring him to justice. These opporunities should have benefitted from decisive decisions, but they were fritterred away in hesitation and ignorance." /Hurriyet/
 AMBASSADOR UTKAN IN ROMETurkey's new Ambassador to Rome, Necati Utkan, went to Italy. Before his departure Utkan said at Ankara's Ataturk Airport that he would make every effort to create an atmosphere conducive to improving Turco-Italian relations. His main aim is to protect Turkey's benefits while improving bilateral relations, he added. /Sabah/
 FRENCH COURT REFUSES TO RELEASE CAKICIA court in the French town of Aix-en-Provence yesterday refused the request to free a Turkish mobster submitted by his lawyers. The infamous mafia boss Alaattin Cakici, who is wanted in Turkey for instigating a number of murders, including that of his ex-wife, was caught by the local authorities in the French town of Nice last summer. /All papers/
 IRANIAN DEPUTY FOREIGN MINISTER IN TURKEYThe Iranian Deputy Foreign Minister, Mohsen Eminzade, said: "The main aim of my visit was not to repair our mutual ties because we have already managed to solve our mutual problems. My main purpose was to convey President Mohammed Khatami's message to President Suleyman Demirel". Eminzade noted that Khatami's message concerns the different problems in the region. Eminzade also said that there is no security problem at the border between Iran and Turkey. He added that cooperation between Turkey and Iran has improved the security of the border. /All papers/
 IMF EMPHASIZES PRIVATIZATIONTurkey's privatization drive should gain momentum in spite of the volatility on the international markets, said the IMF Turkey-desk Chief Martin Hardy. Hardy answered journalists' questions following a meeting with Privatization Board (OIB) Chairman Ugur Bayar. Privatization is a very important activity that Turkey needs to carry out, said Hardy, adding that privatization has contributed towards the solution of Turkey's economic and financial problems. The slowdown in the rate of inflation indicates that last year's economic policies have resulted in an improvement , and thus these policies should be continued, said Hardy. /All papers/
 MORNINGSTAR IN ANKARAA senior US official arrived in Ankara yesterday for consultations with Turkish officials on a proposed pipeline to carry Caspian oil to Western markets through Turkey. Richard Morningstar, President Clinton's special adviser on Caspian energy, is pressing major oil companies to opt for a pipeline that would run from Baku in Azerbaijan to Ceyhan on Turkey's Mediterranean coast. Morningstar was received by Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit and Turkish Energy Minister Ziya Aktas and also met the Undersecretary of the Turkish Energy Ministry, Yurdakul Yigitguden. The 11 oil companies involved in a consortium to extract the oil are expected to make a decision soon on their preferred route. /All papers/
 15 TERRORISTS KILLEDClashes in the Southeast between the PKK terrorist organization and Turkish security forces continue. Fifteen members of the PKK were killed in operations in Siirt and Tunceli. Regional officials said that eight members of the security forces died during the clashes which have been going on in the region for the last few days. /All papers/
 TUSIAD DELEGATION MEETS ECEVITA delegation from the Turkish Industrialists' and Businessmen's Association (TUSIAD) headed by Erkut Yucaoglu visited Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit yesterday. During the meeting, draft laws on the economy, such as the Banking and Social Security Bills, were taken up. /Hurriyet/
 BAGHDAD COMPLAINS ABOUT TURKEYIraq has complained about Turkey, the US and Britain to the UN Secretary-General Kofi Annan and accused these countries of intervening in its internal affairs and violating its sovereignty and territorial integrity. The Iraqi Foreign Minister Muhammed Said El Sahaf sent a letter to Annan and said that this situation should be brought to a close as soon as possible. /Cumhuriyet/
 COOPERATION BETWEEN TURKISH AND US WORKERSICEM, the International Chemistry, Energy, Mining and Workers Unions' Federation, which has nearly 25 million members from 115 countries including Turkey, carries on with its programme of international solidarity among workers. Delivering a speech at a meeting, the Marmara Regional Representative of the Revolutionist Workers Unions Confederation (DISK), Gunay Onayman, said that workers had great responsibility in such a period during which investment has become global. /Cumhuriyet/
 IMKB INDEX RISES BY 4.5 %The Istanbul Stock Exchange (IMKB) index rose by 4.5 % following a decrease in the inflation rate and the authorization given by the Treasury to two foreign banks to implement the sales of bonds. The index reached 2,792 points. /Cumhuriyet/
 TURKISH WEEK IN THE HAGUEThe 'Turkish Week' organized by the 'Multi-Cultural Institution' (MCI) in The Hague, Holland, will start today. As the part of the week, whose aim is to further promote Turkish culture and draw the two socities closer together, various cultural and artistic activities have been planned. Some Turkish artists and authors will also participate in the activities, the Anatolia news agency reports.
 TURKISH TOURISM VERY POPULARIt is reported that the number of Austrian tourists to visit Turkey this year will increase by 50 %. An article published in the 'Travel Industry Professional-TIP', one of the most influential tourism magazines in Austria, devoted wide coverage to Turkey. The article noted that 9,750,000 Austrian tourists visited Turkey last year. The article said that in addition to the sun and its coastal beauties, Turkey also had golf tourism. The article added that tourism agencies attached great significance to the whirling dervishes' ceremonies held in December to commemorate the death of Mevlana Celaleddin-i Rumi, as well as to Aspendos and Istanbul Music Festivals, the Anatolia news agency reports.
 TURKISH COMPULSORY LANGUAGE IN BULGARIAThe Turkish language will become compulsory in Bulgaria. The General Director of the National Rights and Freedoms Movement, Tahir Guner, said: "The Turkish language will be a compulsory lesson in the 1999-2000 school year for Turkish minorities. If Bulgarians want, they will also be able to participate in the lessons. The draft curriculum is being drawn up on the commission of the Education Ministry. Thus, a dream will come true after 27 years". He added that there would also be programmes in Turkish on Bulgarian TV and radio stations. Tahir stated that a law on the issue had been enacted by Parliament last November. /Hurriyet/
 TURKEY PAYS $185.6 MILLION OF FOREIGN DEBTSTurkey paid off $185.62 million of her foreign debts during the first three days of February. Turkey paid off $432.01 million in foreign debts in January. Thus, a total of $617.63 million in foreign debts has been paid off since the beginning of this year. /Hurriyet/
 FOREIGN EXCHANGES INCREASECentral Bank foreign exchange reserves rose to $20.3 billion. According to Central Bank data, Central Bank foreign exchange reserves, which amounted to $20.163 billion on January 22, increased by $104 million and reached $20.267 billion on January 29. As of January 15, gold reserves totalled $1.125 billion and foreign exchange reserves in commercial banks were $10.997 billion. /Hurriyet/
 EUROMARK BOND EXPORTSThe Treasury Undersecretariat authorized the Deutsche Bank AG and Paribas banks to undertake the second bond exports of this year on the Euro market, according to a statement by the Treasury Undersecretariat yesterday. /Hurriyet/
 TL 125 BILLION FOR HAGIA SOPHIAAccording to information released by the Culture Ministry, TL 125 billion has been allocated for the restoration of the Hagia Sophia mosque, one of the valuable works of art attracting the interest of many tourists prior to the 2000th anniversary of the birth of Jesus Christ. /Hurriyet/
 TURKISH MOVIE ON WORLD TOURTurkish movies participated in 15 festivals in 30 countries throughout the world last year. The Culture Ministry organized Turkish Film Days in order to further promote Turkish movies on international platforms and to contribute to the movie sector in Turkey. /Cumhuriyet/
 BELGIAN ROYAL PHILHARMONICAL ORCHESTRA IN IZMIRThe Belgian Royal Philharmonical Orchestra will come to Izmir on February 9 in order to give a concert at the Ataturk Culture Centre at the Aegean University. The concert will be financed by the Culture Ministry. The orchestra will give a concert in Istanbul today. /Cumhuriyet/
 EYUP ASIK ACQUITTEDThe Istanbul State Security Court (DGM), by a majority of vote, decided to acquit Eyup Asik, former Minister, saying that the material and moral aspects of the crime of 'aiding a gang to commit crime' were not constituted, the Anatolia news agency reports.
 CAPPADOCIA TO BE OPENED TO THE WORLDCappadocia will be promoted in international fairs. The Chairman of the Cappadocia Tourism Facilities Association (KAPTID), Ahmet Bayram, said that they would attend Milan's Tourism Fair in Italy, the Berlin Fair in Germany and the London Fair in England to promote the rich tourist potential of the region. Bayram noted that fairs were very effective in the promotion of countries. /Sabah/
 NAZIM HIKMET'S POEMS IN AMERICAWorld famous Turkish poet Nazim Hikmet's poems will meet with American art-lovers in March in Chicago. The expenses will be met by various art funds of the Chicago Mayorship. The presentation which will be organized by the "Shaw Chicago" institution will take place in Claudia Cassidy Theatre in Chicago. /Sabah/
 FIRE IN OLD PEOPLE'S HOME IN ISTANBULLast night a fire was occured at Maltepe Old People's Home in Istanbul. Officials announced that nine old people had died and six of them were wounded. It was reported that the reason for fire is being investigated by experts. /Sabah/
 NATO'S REPLY TO GREEK-CYPRIOTSWhile the Minister of Foreign Affairs for the Greek-Cypriot Administration, Yannis Kasulides, asserts that the formation of a multinational peace-keeping force to be provided by NATO, will lead to the disarmament of the island, this idea has been considered "meaningless" by the Alliance. Diplomatic circles in NATO stated that the Greek-Cypriots frequently put forward such ideas in order to distract the focus of attention of the international community, reiterating that the question of Cyprus is not and will never be on NATO's agenda. /Aksam/
 GREEK EFFORTS TO UNDERMINE TURKEY'S UNITYIt is reported that the Communist International will be held in Greece in May. According to diplomatic and political circles in Athens, by means of a rejuvenation of the Communist International, Greece plans to establish hegemony over Communist and Labour parties from different countries in order to manipulate this unity in her own interests. In this respect, it is reported that the Greek Communist Party (KKE) will invite the terrorist PKK to this meeting as well. Meanwhile, a Greek newspaper (Stohos) published a map which shows part of Turkish lands, including Eastern Thrace and the Aegean region, as territories to be conquered by Greece. /Aksam/
 ERCEL: "THE CRISIS IS A MERE BLIP"Gazi Ercel, the Governor of the Central Bank, said that by virtue of its balance of payments, rate of growth, the operation of the market mechanism, the dynamism of the private sector and the robust infrastructure of its banking system, Turkey has been able to avoid many consequences of the global crisis. Noting that the impact of the global financial crisis on Turkey will be less than expected, Ercel said, "The level of globalization of the Turkish economy is relatively low, which undermines the scrupulous nature of the crisis." Ercel also claimed that Turkey has a quite experienced executive staff regarding financial crises, and this enables the Central Bank to maintain financial liquidity in the market without challenging the self-confidence of the market. /Aksam/
 $520 MILLION INVESTMENT FROM TURKCELL AND ERICSSONTurkcell, the largest GSM operator in the Turkish telecommunications sector, signed a 520-million-dollar agreement with Ericsson-Turkey to expand its network capacity and subscriber volume. /Aksam/
 FROM THE COLUMNS....FROM THE COLUMNS....FROM THE COLUMNS....
 "TOWARDS THE ELECTIONS" -BY YAVUZ DONAT (SABAH)Columnist Yavuz Donat wrote about his discussion with ANAP leader Mesut Yilmaz concerning the elections to be held on 18 April in today's article. Donat pointed out that the True Path Party (DYP), the Virtue Party (FP) and the Republican People's Party (CHP) would greatly "pressurize" ANAP and Mesut Yilmaz. Donat asked Yilmaz what he would do to defend himself and his party. Yilmaz replied that he had already started a race and he only thought to reach the finish without interesting himself in what others were doing.
Yilmaz told Donat, "Bulent Ecevit and myself decided not to participate in any interview or debates on televion because the voting public do not want polemics." Regarding the Southeast Yilmaz said that the Southeast was Turkey's concern; if the region was left undeveloped so would Turkey be.
Donat finished his article with a prediction saying that the election will be a competition, widely, between the Motherland Party (ANAP) and the Virtue Party (FP).
 OCALAN ON TRAVEL -BY BEKIR COSKUN (HURRIYET)Bekir Coskun, a journalist from the daily 'Hurriyet' newspaper, says the following in his article today: "Ocalan has never travelled so much until today. It is not certain whether he is on the plane or on the ground. The intelligence services cannot even keep pace with Ocalan's flight. While the news is claiming that Ocalan is in Moscow, he tours over Europe and arrives in Rome. However in spite of all this, the refusal on the part of any country to admit Ocalan shows Turkey's influence.
The most serious issue is that Iran has begun to assist the PKK terrorist organization. That is what Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit has said. Due to the air-attacks by the aircraft departing from Incirlik Air Base, Iraq began to support the PKK. Therefore, in addition to Turkey's economic losses since the Gulf War, Turkey is also faced with vapid American policies..". /Hurriyet/
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