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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Press and Other Media, 07-06-18

Cyprus Press and Information Office: Turkish Cypriot Press Review Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Republic of Cyprus Press and Information Office Server at <http://www.pio.gov.cy/>

TURKISH PRESS AND OTHER MEDIA No.115/07 16-18.06.07

[A] NEWS ITEMS

  • [01] President Sezer calls for referendum on Constitutional Amendment package
  • [02] Sources on Turkey´s expectations for three more chapters from Germany
  • [03] Extract on Cyprus from MHP´s election platform
  • [04] Tension between Greece, Turkey ahead of BSEC summit over Cyprus
  • [05] 10th Anniversary of establishment of D-8 group
  • [06] Erdogan´s adviser said that if E.U. fulfils its promises on the Cyprus issue, Turkey is ready to open it ports to the vessels of the Republic of Cyprus
  • [07] Cities in the occupied Cyprus were granted membership to OICC meeting
  • [08] A delegation from the so-called civil defence organization left for Nepal
  • [09] The so-called attorney general gave an interview to KIBRIS paper
  • [10] The 47% of the students in primary schools in occupied Cyprus are children of Turkish workers
  • [11] The British High Court started hearing the appeal of Meletis Apostolides on Orams case
  • [12] Cyprus Today: Plan for occupied Tymbou signs to warn homebuyers
  • [13] A group filed a case at a court in Ankara claiming that the closed area of Varosha where the property of Myra Xenides-Arestis is belongs to the Abdullah Pasha vakif
  • [14] The first Greek Cypriot with a TRNC diploma
  • [B] Commentaries, Editorials and Analysis

  • [15] Scenario at U.S. think tank draws reactions from Turkey

  • [A] NEWS ITEMS

    [01] President Sezer calls for referendum on Constitutional Amendment package

    ANKARA ANATOLIA news agency (15.06.07) reports the following:

    Turkish President Ahmet Necdet Sezer sent the constitutional amendment package which re-arranges the process for parliamentary and presidential elections, to the Prime Ministry Office for its publishment for referendum.

    Releasing a statement, the Presidential Press Center said on Friday that President Sezer sent the constitutional amendment package to the Prime Ministry Office for its publishment for referendum.

    "President Sezer also said that he would file a lawsuit at the Constitutional Court," the statement noted.

    The package adopted by the parliament on May 31st envisages that general elections are held once in every four years; the president is elected by popular vote; the presidential term is lowered from the current seven years to five; the president can stand for re-election for a second term; and a quorum of at least one third (184) of total number of MPs is required to open a parliamentary debate.

    Moreover, A.A. (15.06.07) reports that the Constitutional Court will debate the Republican People's Party's (CHP) request for invalidation of the constitutional amendment package re-arranging process for presidential and parliamentary elections, next week.

    The rapporteur assigned by the court, concluded his assessment and sent his report to the members of the court.

    The package adopted by the parliament on May 31st envisages that general elections are held once in every four years; the president is elected by popular vote; the presidential term is lowered from the current seven years to five; the president can stand for re-election for a second term; and a quorum of at least one third (184) of total number of MPs is required to open a parliamentary debate.

    [02] Sources on Turkey´s expectations for three more chapters from Germany

    ANKARA ANATOLIA news agency (15.06.07) reports the following:

    Turkey expects Germany, which holds the rotating EU presidency, to keep its promises to open negotiations on three chapter headings before its six-month presidency ends.

    The European Commission completed its work on the chapters "Economy and Monetary Policy", "Statistics" and "Financial Control" and its report to the member-countries. Now, the Working Group on EU Enlargement will decide whether negotiations on those three chapters will be opened. If the group decides to open negotiations, the process will become official during the Inter-parliamentary Conference on June 26th.

    Sources said that France could put reservations regarding the chapter heading "Economic and Monetary Policy", and the Greek Cypriot administration could put reservations on "Financial Control". Ankara, on the other hand, holds talks with the EU presidency for opening of negotiations on those three chapter headings end-June.

    [03] Extract on Cyprus from MHP´s election platform

    Istanbul CNN Turk television (15.06.07) broadcast the Nationalist Action Party´s (MHP) election platform.

    MHP´s policy on the Cyprus problem is the following:

    Bahceli stated that they would take a firm stand to prevent the solution of the Cyprus problem being transferred to the EU and to stop the UN good will mission being undermined. He said, "Concrete steps will be taken to increase Turkey's financial support to the maximum and to prepare a new economic transformation and development plan."

    [04] Tension between Greece, Turkey ahead of BSEC summit over Cyprus

    Today´s ZAMAN newspaper (18.06.07) reports the following:

    The Greek Cypriot government, which is not recognized by Ankara, has applied to become an observer member of the Black Sea Economic Cooperation (BSEC) shortly before next week's summit to mark the 15th anniversary of the organization.

    Ankara's objection to this application led BSEC member Greece to veto other applications from Britain, Iran, Hungary and Kazakhstan to become observers.

    Ankara, nevertheless, believes that Greece's veto can be overcome in time as it expects Athens to change its attitude concerning the issue, diplomatic sources in the Turkish capital have recently said.

    No development on the issue is expected to take place at the summit, to be held on Monday, when President Ahmet Necdet Sezer will host the presidents of other 11 members -- Azerbaijan, Albania, Bulgaria, Greece, Georgia, Moldova, Russia, Romania, Serbia and Ukraine -- except for Armenia, which will be represented at the foreign ministerial level. Yet, the same diplomatic sources said the issue may be discussed during a planned meeting of BSEC foreign ministers to be held in October, when Turkey's six-month term presidency expires.

    Meanwhile, the European Commission has also applied to become an observer member of the BSEC, which is, according to diplomatic sources in Ankara, a strong sign of the European Union's willingness to improve cooperation with the organization, which now has three joint members with the bloc: Bulgaria, Greece and Romania.

    [05] 10th Anniversary of establishment of D-8 group

    ANKARA ANATOLIA news agency (15.06.07) reports the following:

    "We must increase cooperation among the D-8 nations in political, economic, technological, cultural and military fields," said Arif Ersoy, Secretary General of the Economic and Social Researches Center (ESAM), on Friday. Ersoy held a press briefing at the ESAM center in Ankara before Saturday's ceremony at Istanbul's Ciragan Palace to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the establishment of the D-8 Group.

    Ersoy reminded all that the D-8 Group was established in 1997 with the leadership of the then Turkish Prime Minister Necmettin Erbakan in order to "establish peace and justice in the Islamic world and the whole globe." "The principles that make up the D-8 Group are peace, dialogue, justice, equality, helping each other and solidarity," said Ersoy.

    Ersoy stressed that all barriers limiting free trade should be lifted among the D-8 members.

    According to Ersoy, the D-8 Group is the biggest movement in the planet that calls on all to fight against oppression.

    "The D-8 Group will soon become D-60 Muslim countries and later include all developing nations within its entity and become the D-160," noted Ersoy. The ceremony at the Ciragan Palace will start at 10.30 a.m. on Saturday. The D-8 Group is comprised of Turkey, Egypt, Indonesia, Malaysia, Bangladesh, Nigeria, Pakistan and Iran.

    [06] Erdogan´s adviser said that if E.U. fulfils its promises on the Cyprus issue, Turkey is ready to open it ports to the vessels of the Republic of Cyprus

    Illegal Bayrak television (16.06.07) broadcast the following:

    The Chief Councilor of Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan Cuneyt Zapsu has stated that if the European Union fulfills its promises on the Cyprus issue Turkey is ready to open its ports to Greek Cypriot traffic.

    The Cyprus issue was among the topics discussed at a panel discussion in Berlin which was organized by the Heinrich Boll Foundation, known with its closeness to the German Greens Party.

    The Chief Councilor of Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan Cuneyt Zapsu has stated that if the European Union fulfills its promises on the Cyprus issue Turkey is ready to open its ports to Greek Cypriot traffic.

    The Cyprus issue was among the topics discussed at a panel discussion in Berlin which was organized by the Heinrich Boll Foundation, known with its closeness to the German Greens Party.

    Speaking at the panel Mr. Zapsu noted that the EU had not fulfilled its promises to the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus and added that Turkey is ready to open its ports to Greek Cypriot traffic only if the Union fulfills its promises.

    Also speaking, the co-leader of the German Greens Party Claudia Roth stated that Turkey did not make a move on the Cyprus issue however also noted that the EU did not fulfill its promises.

    She also criticized the Vice-President of the European Commission Gunter Verheugen for supporting the EU membership of a divided Cyprus. Stating that the Leader of the Greek Cypriot Administration Tasos Papadopulos is not supporting the reunification of the island, Mrs. Roth said if this separation continues the EU would not be trusted by Turkey.

    [07] Cities in the occupied Cyprus were granted membership to OICC meeting

    ANKARA ANATOLIA news agency (17.06.07) reports the following:

    The 26th Executive Board meeting of the Organisation of Islamic Capitals and Cities (OICC) was held in Ankara on Sunday.

    Ankara Metropolitan Mayor Melih Gokcek delivered a speech at the meeting and said the problems of cities and their solutions bore resemblance, regardless of the city's location in the world.

    Gökcek said the organisation with its 141 members from 54 Muslim countries and 8 members with observer status from other countries was a big family collaborating with universities and civil organisations.

    Taking the floor after Gokcek Omar Abdullah Kadi, OICC Secretary General said OICC had a respectable place among international organisations after its endeavours of 26 years and indicated that to achieve this goal OICC held international conferences exhibitions, present awards and extended financial support to important projects for Islamic History.

    Yehia Muhammed El Shoeeby Sana'a Mayor and Chairman of the 25th OICC Administrative Council briefed the audience about the works done in their term. Shoeeby later nominated Gokcek for the chairmanship of the 26th Administrative Council. Gokcek was elected unanimously as the Chairman of the 26th OICC Administrative Council.

    With the proposal of Ankara Metropolitan Mayor Melih Gokcek, Lefkosa, Gazimagusa and Girne cities of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus was granted membership unanimously.

    PM Recep Tayyip Erdogan and FM Abdullah Gul are also expected to attend the 2nd day of the conference.

    [08] A delegation from the so-called civil defence organization left for Nepal

    Illegal Bayrak televison (17.06.07) broadcast the following:

    A delegation from the Civil Defence Organization left the Republic for Nepal this morning.

    The delegation is flying to Nepal upon the invitation from Nepals Preparing for Natural Disasters Network.

    The civil defence delegation consists of experts on natural disaster management and search and rescue and will give courses in these fields to their Nepalese counterparts.

    The delegation will share their knowledge and experience on disaster management with high ranking officials from the Nepalese natural disasters network between the 20th and 24th of June.

    The Civil Defence delegation will return to the Republic on the 29th of June.

    [09] The so-called attorney general gave an interview to KIBRIS paper

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (18.06.07) reports that the self-styled Attorney General in the Turkish occupied part of Republic of Cyprus Akin Sait in an interview to the paper said that the so-called Constitution should be amended and that the introduction of legal reforms was inevitable.

    Mr Akin Sait, after serving twenty years as so-called Attorney General in the occupation regime and 32 years in the legal service will be retiring soon.

    In the interview Mr Sait said that the increase in the crime rate and increased diversity in crimes made inevitable introducing amendments to the Constitution and reforms to the legal system. He also said that despite the fact that it is the Office of the Attorney General which is responsible for the looking into the crime cases, however, since police is responsible for investigation this causes delays and difficulties.

    He went on and said that compared to the past the crime rate in the occupied area has increased significantly. He stressed that especially narcotics related crimes increased in a dramatic rate. He stressed the importance of introducing strict controls at the entry points to the occupied areas.

    Mr Sait added that during his term of office he had passed judgments for which he was not sorry at all. Only in one case he said his conscious is not clear, he should have referred the case to the Court of Appeal and because of the demand of the politicians he did not do so.

    (MHY)

    [10] The 47% of the students in primary schools in occupied Cyprus are children of Turkish workers

    Turkish Cypriot daily YENI DUZEN newspaper (16.06.07) reports that a delegation of the Turkish Cypriot Teachers Trade Union (KTOS) headed by the organizations chairman, Mr Guven Varoglu, and KTOSs general secretary, Mr Sener Elcil, visited the self-styled prime minister in occupied Cyprus, Mr Ferdi Soyer. The delegation informed Mr Soyer about the problems in education in the occupation regime and conveyed to him its thoughts on political issues.

    Speaking about the educational problems in occupied Cyprus Mr Elcil stated that the number of the students in classrooms has been increased without any order and added that at this point 47% of the students studying at elementary schools are the children of Turkish workers. Mr Elcil also stated that if the population in north Cyprus continues to be in creased in this way, educational, social and economic problems will be created. Mr Elcil also called on the illegal Turkish embassy to Nicosia to start again offering help to the Turkish origin children, because, as he noted, these children are the embassys children.

    On his part Mr Soyer stated that the occupation regime is oblige to offer any services to the children of the legal workers in occupied Cyprus.

    (CS)

    [11] The British High Court started hearing the appeal of Meletis Apostolides on Orams case

    Turkish Cypriot weekly CYPRUS TODAY newspaper (16-22.06.07) reports the following:

    Three British High Court judges will begin hearing three days of evidence on Monday when a Greek Cypriot legal team attempts to overturn September´s landmark ruling in the Orams case.

    Cherie Blair will be fighting the appeal on behalf of her clients, Linda and David Orams, and is expected to meet them in London to discuss strategy over the weekend.

    The judgement in favour of Mr and Mrs Orams meant that Greek Cypriot court judgements could not be enforced in the UK and that the couple would not have to demolish their Lapta villa (occupied Lapithos) or risk having their UK assets seized to pay compensation and legal costs. The case stemmed from a claim by Greek Cypriot Meletios Apostolides that the land on which the Orams property had been built was his.

    Speaking to Cyprus Today from her Sussex home in the UK on Monday, Mrs Orams said: We are very confident that our lawyers have a good defence against the appeal. However, it should never have come to this. The Greek Cypriots were the first to put on the boxing gloves. We could have come to some arrangement without involving the courts, but now we have no option but to defend ourselves, which we shall be doing on Monday.

    The Greek Cypriot side is expected to launch its appeal on the basis that an order from the Nicosia District Court in South Cyprus, that the Oramses demolish their villa and pay compensation to Mr Apostolides, should be backed by the British High Court under the Brussels Convention. If the appeal succeeds it would mean the Oramses not only losing their Lapta (occupied Lapithos) villa but possibly also their home in the UK, as under the convention their non-TRNC assets would also be at risk.

    We have been told not to expect an immediate decision when the hearing finishes on Wednesday because the three judges will need time to confer and then agree their verdict, said Mrs Orams. Their ruling on the appeal will have effects going far beyond North Cyprus as it will establish a precedent applicable in many countries.

    We are just looking forward to this last round being over so we can return to our normal lives.

    This week´s hearing may not prove to be the last round, however.

    One of the lawyers on the Orams team, TRNC-based Gunes Mentes, said on Tuesday: If this appeal fails the other side could make a final appeal to the House of Lords, or refer the case to the European Court of Justice.

    Should the appeal be successful, he said, the Oramses would have the right to appeal to the House of Lords, and their lawyers would apply for an injunction preventing any enforcement action until such an appeal was finalised.

    The instructing lawyer for the Greek Cypriot side, Constantis Candounas, is currently receiving treatment in a London hospital for what he described as a blood-related condition.

    Speaking from his hospital bed, he said on Wednesday: Our strategy is to convince the British appeal court that it should refer the case to the European Court of Justice in Luxembourg.

    If I am released from hospital in time I shall be in court, but we have a strong legal team in place if I cannot be there.

    [12] Cyprus Today: Plan for occupied Tymbou signs to warn homebuyers

    Turkish Cypriot weekly CYPRUS TODAY newspaper (16-22.06.07) reports the following:

    Warning signs could soon be erected at Ercan (occupied Tymbou) Airport advising people not to buy property in North Cyprus unless they use an approved estate agent.

    The idea is one of a raft of proposals from the government and estate agents aimed at bringing the TRNC´s construction industry under control: The first proposal exclusively revealed by Cyprus Today two weeks ago was to establish a property complaints office in the Prime Ministry. It is now expected to be in operation by next month.

    The proposals, including the one for property warning signs, are currently being negotiated with the government by the Estate Agents´Association (EAA) which all those who sell houses for a living will have to join before September.

    Also on the table is a government suggestion that to qualify as a bona fide estate agency, a one-off fee of 25,000 YTL should be paid to the Interior Ministry a move being opposed by the industry. The government wants, in addition, for estate agencies to have assets, bank guarantees or insurance policies worth at least 200,000 YTL to be used in the event of a successful claim against them by a property purchaser.

    But speaking after a meeting yesterday with Prime Minister Ferdi Sabit Soyer, EAA chairman Hasan Sungur said: We are against the 25,000 YTL fee, which is roughly 25 times the monthly minimum wage. We would much rather have the personal liability sum raised from 200,000 YTL to 300,000 YTL and we have made that clear.

    Other proposals, which it is believed are now agreed, are:

    - No-one having served a term of imprisonment exceeding one year, or who has been responsible for a dishonoured cheque, will qualify as an accredited estate agent.

    - Such estate agents must be educated to at least high school or equivalent level and be taxpayers with no revenue debts.

    Mr Sungur, who runs five family-owned business related to estate agency and property development, said: In 1992 there were just 22 estate agencies in the TRNC but we now already have 200 on our membership list awaiting government accreditation.

    We plan to advertise and generally publicise the names of our members so property purchases will know who to go to in future.

    We also want to advertise at Ercan to advise people not to buy from those who are not on the list. It has been easy for someone to rent a luxurious office, employ an attractive front-office member of staff and drive around in a smart car bought on long-term credit. Our aim is that this will be more and more difficult.

    Membership of the association does not mean government accreditation is guaranteed, but it is a necessary first step towards achieving it. We expect the first government approvals of estate agencies next month.

    [13] A group filed a case at a court in Ankara claiming that the closed area of Varosha where the property of Myra Xenides-Arestis is belongs to the Abdullah Pasha vakif

    Illegal Bayrak television (15.06.07) broadcast the following:

    A group of 23 people has said that the property in Maras (closed area of Varosha) on which the Greek Cypriot Myra Xenides-Arestis claims ownership- belongs to the Abdullah Pasha Vakif.

    The group filed a case at a court in Ankara claiming the right to be acknowledged as the beneficiaries of the Abdullah Pasa Vakif

    The lawyer for the group Asli Aksu told the Anatolian News Agency that if her clients win the case, they will have the right of say on the income and properties owned by the Abdullah Pasha Vakif.

    In its verdict on the Arestis Case, the European Court of Human Rights ordered Turkey to pay an amount of 885,000 euros, as also envisaged by the Immovable Property Commission, to Greek Cypriot Myra Xenides-Arestis in compensation for the property in Maras in the North.

    Her claim that the Immovable Property Commission in the TRNC was illegal was dismissed by the Court.

    The Immovable Property Commission currently has 1.400 outstanding applications and the commission has so far settled 22 out of 182 applications.

    [14] The first Greek Cypriot with a TRNC diploma

    Turkish daily MILLIYET newspaper (17.06.07) publishes a report by its occupied Lefkosia correspondent, Sefa Karahasan, under the title The first Greek Cypriot with a TRNC diploma. Mr Karahasan writes that Eleftherios Albizreh is the first young Greek Cypriot who will graduate from the East Mediterranean University (DAU) in occupied Cyprus on June 29.

    According to the paper, Eleftherios Albizreh has enrolled to the Architecture School of the illegal DAU three years ago and he will be the first Greek Cypriot who will gain a diploma after attending a TRNC university.

    After awarded with his diploma, Eleftherios Albizreh will submit an application for approval of his diploma to the Greek Cypriot Ministry of Education, but the Greek Cypriot student seems unhappy, because the Greek Cypriots consider the TRNC as an illegal administration, the paper writes.

    MILLIYET also notes that the architecture diploma of the DAU is accepted as valid by other countries except the Greek Cypriot side.

    Albizreh, who answered questions of the newspaper on why he has chosen the TRNC for his higher education, said: There is no School of Architecture in English in the university of the South (Greek Cypriot sector). I have done my research. I preferred DAU. I am positively thinking for this place. I received very good education in the DAU. There are students here from other countries and I had the possibility to meet with other colleagues.

    Subtitle: I had no problem with the Turks

    No problem has been created between the Turkish Cypriot students and the students who come from Turkey for receiving education. Politics never came to our agenda. I was provided with a very relaxed environment here. There was support to me by my family. I do not think that I would have been able to succeed here if I did not have the support of my family, Albizreh further added.

    They are saying to me We too should have such universities. There are such comments, but my friends did not say we shall go to DAU as well. In every occasion I say that this is a very good place, Eleftherios Albizreh also added.

    The paper also notes that one Greek Cypriot by the name Tony Angastiniotis is a member of the university teaching staff.

    (M/L)


    [B] Commentaries, Editorials and Analysis

    [15] Scenario at U.S. think tank draws reactions from Turkey

    Turkish daily MILLIYET newspaper (17.06.07) publishes the following commentary by Yasemin Congar under the title: If MOSSAD and the PKK Cooperate:

    In the scenario debated at the American think tank known as the Hudson Institute, a possible operation by Turkey into Northern Iraq was debated. Participants were called upon to assess surprises as well, such as the discovery of video tapes showing Israeli agents side-by-side with PKK members.

    The scenario taken up in the conservative-leaning American think tank known as the Hudson Institute, and which has drawn intensive criticism, involved discussion of the ramifications of a possible operation by Turkey into Northern Iraq.

    I provide here an extensive summary of the four-page scenario text, which was drawn up by the Hudson Institute's experts and then sent in advance to participants in the 13 June meeting.

    Background of the Scenario:

    Subtitle: "Pressure for an Operation"

    The text, under the heading "Hudson Institute Turkey Working Group," begins with a section "Background: Turkey and the PKK." In this section, it is noted that "domestic pressure on Prime Minister [Recep Tayyip] Erdogan to provide authorization for a unilateral intervention into Northern Iraq has increased in the past year. But now, calls for a military operation into Northern Iraq that have become even more vehement due to a series of bombing actions by the PKK and the upcoming parliamentary and presidential elections have reached a peak."

    Subtitle: "Tensions Between AKP and Secularists"

    The text, which points out that on 12 April General Staff Chief Yasar Buyukanit had said that a cross-border operation was "necessary," conveys the words of Prime Minister Erdogan that, if the military should request, he would obtain "operational authorization" from the National Assembly, as well as those of Buyukanit that "the necessary authorization was in fact requested on 12 April."

    In the text, which states that 60,000 Turkish troops have been amassed on the Iraqi border, there is the statement: "The tension that has been rising for months between the AKP [Justice and Development Party] and secular institutions caused an impasse in the parliament in May, as well as a constitutional crisis and mass demonstrations throughout Turkey." In the text, the likelihood of a military operation is assessed with the following words:

    "The situation between Turkey and the PKK is probably at the point of boiling over. The likelihood of Turkey's staging a sizable operation against the PKK in Iraq, either in order to respond to a new terrorist action or as a result of domestic political intrigues, is gradually increasing. The effects of such an intervention could lead to disaster, and could greatly destabilize an already unstable region."

    It is stressed in the text that "the Iraqi Kurds are the most consistent supporters of the United States in Iraq, and the United States' statements opposing a possible cross-border operation by Turkey are pointed out.

    Subtitle: The Scenario: "Into Northern Iraq"

    The scenario presented in the section entitled "Into Northern Iraq" in the Hudson Institute's meeting text is, in summary, as follows:

    18 June: A suicide attacker, with a small truck packed with explosives, crashes into a police station in Beyoglu [section of Istanbul]... At least 50 police, tourists, and shoppers lose their lives in the attack. Even though no organization claims responsibility, the rumor that the PKK has conducted the action spreads within a few hours.

    19 June: Interior Ministry officials announce that the attacker had been trained in a PKK camp in Northern Iraq. The General Staff agrees with this determination... General Staff Chief Buyukanit, asserting that as long as the Iraqi border is not protected and the organization's chain of command not disrupted, the PKK will continue its actions in the big cities, wants a cross-border operation to be conducted immediately. The US Department of State calls upon Turkey to remain calm.

    23 June: Iranian officials announce that a convoy carrying explosives to Damascus has been attacked by PKK members in Iran. Tehran, claiming that the Americans had given the order for the attack to the PKK, promises logistical and military support to a Turkish operation into Northern Iraq.

    24 June: In Ankara, in a suicide attack in front of the Constitutional Court, (former) Chief Justice Tulay Tugcu is severely wounded, and later dies in hospital. It is understood that the explosives utilized are the same as in the Beyoglu attack.

    25 June: It is announced by the Interior Ministry and the General Staff that the PKK conducted the actions. Millions of people stage rallies in Ankara, Istanbul, Izmir, and Samsun calling upon the military to strike a fatal blow to the PKK.

    25-28 June: Prime Minister Erdogan, in order to gain political capital prior to the election by attracting extreme nationalists, gets an authorization resolution for a cross-border operation from the TBMM [Turkish Grand National Assembly].

    29 June: 50,000 Turkish troops cross the Iraqi border at dawn; they set up checkpoints on the other side of the border and enter into small-scale clashes with the PKK. The US Department of State, and Iraq, condemn the operation. Later, the White House makes a statement that cites Turkey's right to self-defense.

    30 June: [Iraqi Kurdish Regional President] Mas'ud Barzani condemns the Turkish "invasion" and announces that the peshmergas [Iraqi Kurdish irregular military] will defend Kurdistan.

    Subtitle: Potential Surprises

    In this section, included among potential developments that are intended to be taken into account, participants are asked to assess surprises such as "new findings that the individual who staged the attack in Beyoglu was trained in a Hizballah camp in Syria," "Turkish troops finding, on Qandil Mountain, MOSSAD training materials and videotapes showing Israeli agents side-by-side with PKK militants,", and "a peshmerga unit in Northern Iraq attacks Turkish Special Forces, and it is learned following the attack that one of the dead was an American soldier in a peshmerga uniform."

    Subtitle: Letter of Invitation

    The letter of invitation to the meeting, which was signed by Zeyno Baran, states the following: "We have worked out a plausible scenario in which a series of incidents impel Turkey to mount an operation against the PKK in Northern Iraq. Those who take part in this closed, off-the-record meeting will 'game' the incidents that follow from this crisis. Participants will include US government officials, members of the think-tank community, and high-level officers from the Turkish General Staff's think tank SAREM [Strategic Research and Studies Center]." In the final portion of the invitation, invitees are asked to advise as soon as possible whether or not they will take part in the meeting, and are told that, if they do attend, the text containing the details of the scenario will be sent to them.

    Subtitle: SAREM Took Part

    It has been learned that, participating in the meeting held on 13 June at the Hudson Institute were, in addition to various US officials and analysts, Brigadier General Suha Tanyeri, the Chairman of the Strategic Research and Studies Center (SAREM) within the General Staff Command; Brigadier General Bertain Nogaylaroglu, Turkey's Defense Attache in Washington; and other Turkish military officials.

    It is stated that, at the meeting, which was chaired by retired US Lieutenant General William E. Odom and Hudson Institute Eurasia Policy Center Director Zeyno Baran, Qubad Talabani, the Washington representative of the Kurdistan Regional Government and the son of Iraqi President Jalal Talabani, was also present.

    Subtitle: Key Questions

    In the Hudson Institute's meeting text, the suggested questions proposed to be discussed regarding this scenario are as follows:

    - Are the White House and US State Department's reactions to the Turkish operation realistic?

    - How would Iraq's neighbors, Israel, and the Arab League react?

    - How would the EU react? Would this put a de facto end to Turkey's accession negotiations?

    - Could the Turkish military conduct a successful operation against the PKK in Northern Iraq?

    - What would be the consequences of a clash between a small peshmerga unit and Turkish Special Forces that caused casualties on both sides?

    - Would the TSK [Turkish Armed Forces] accept Iran's proposal for a joint operation? How would Turkish-US relations, and NATO solidarity, be impacted by this?

    - What would Baghdad's reaction be? Would it support Barzani and the Kurds, or Turkey?

    - Would the US Congress threaten sanctions similar to those of 1974?

    - How would a new finding that the Constitutional Court attack was the work of Al-Qa'ida impact the Turkish operation?

    EG/


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