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Anadolu Agency: News in English, 98-02-12
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From: The Anadolu Agency Home Page at <http://www.anadoluajansi.gov.tr/>
12 FEB 1998
 TURKEY-ALBANIA - ALBANIAN PRESIDENT MEYDANI IN ANKARAANKARA, Feb 12 (A.A) - The Albanian President Recep Meidani arrived in Ankara on Wednesday on a two-day visit as the official guest of President Suleyman Demirel.
Speaking on his arrival at Ankara's Esenboga Airport, Meidani stressed that Turkish-Albanian relations have started in 1923, adding that relations have been maintained without depending on the political regimes of the two countries.
Paskal Milo, the Albanian Foreign Minister, Ylli Bufi, the Privatization Minister and Alex Andoni, the Chief of General Staff accompanied Meidani during his visit.
President Meidani's visit will help to improve relations between the two countries and facilitate the exchange of opinions on national and regional issues at the highest level.
 US-IRAQ-TURKEY - US DEFENSE DEPARTMENT REPORT CLAIMS THAT TURKEY IS IN THE RANGE OF SADDAM'S SECRET MISSILESWASHINGTON, Feb 12 (A.A) - It was claimed that Iraq has dozens of "secret" missiles that may easily hit a lot of countries in the region extending from Saudi Arabia to Israel. It was also claimed that Turkey was in the range of these chemical and biological warheads and these secret missiles that may be projected.
According to a report prepared by the US Defense Department (Pentagon) Scud missiles al-Hussein and al-Abbas may hit targets that are at a distance of 595 and 895 km. These missiles may also reach the targets easily by being equipped with chemical and biological warheads.
The report also expressed belief that these missiles were in the Republican guards' installations and in secure regions like Ebu Gurayb, Tikrit and Bayci.
The US Administration said that Iraq has chemical and biological weapons that may kill millions of people. Saddam earlier used chemical weapons against Iran and his own people.
UNSCOM, which carried out investigations within the framework of the UN resolutions, destroyed thousands of technical equipment, 38,000 chemical weapons and 30 chemical and biological warheads.
Meanwhile, Iraq says that it does not have such weapons.
 TURKEY-PRESS SCANThese are some of the major headlines and their brief stories in Turkey's press on Feb 12, 1998. The Anadolu Agency does not verify these stories and does not vouch for their accuracy. You will find more detailed summaries of the main stories in the Turkish press in a few hours.
HURRIYET (LIBERAL) RUSSIA: DO NOT LET THE US USE INCIRLIK
MILLIYET (LIBERAL)WAR ROOM OF PARLIAMENT
Even if Ankara falls under threat in any war, the activities of the Parliament will not be halted because there is a Parliament underground as well. All of the personnel could move here within two hours.
SABAH (LIBERAL) TANER: IMF TALKS ANNULLED
CUMHURIYET (LEFT) CALL FOR PEACE FROM ECEVIT
RADIKAL (LEFT)ECEVIT: BRITAIN MAY DRAG THE U.S. INTO MAKING SEVERAL TRICKS ON THE IRAQI
Deputy Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit after his statement "the US has a plan to establish a Kurdish state" which received reaction from the U.S., said on Wednesday, "Britain always tried to implement its own plans in the Middle East."
YENİ YÜZYIL (LIBERAL) THE GOVERNMENT IS FINISHED, THE ONLY WAY IS ELECTION
TÜRKİYE (RIGHT)REJECTION OF IRAQ'S CONCESSION
The US and Britain did not accept the proposal of Baghdad to open 8 palaces to UN control. White House Spokesman Michael McCurry said that it was not Iraq's duty to specify the conditions of control.
ZAMAN (CONSERVATIVE)SHOCK STATEMENTS FROM ERKAYA
Retired Admiral Erkaya made strange statements about the Gulf Crisis.
1- The problem is oil, interests are clashing.
2- Preparations have finished, war will start within a week.
3- Turkey does not have a serious intelligence force in Iraq.
4- The US has equipped Incirlik with Patriot missiles.
FINANSAL FORUM (ECONOMY)LABOR MINISTER CAGAN: RETIREMENT AGE TO BE 50-55
Nami Cagan, the Minister of Labor and Social Security said that there was no difference of opinion within the government about retirement age. He said that the agreement on the retirement age was 50-55 as it had been reported in the Parliament draft.
 US-TURKEY - US: ''WE UNDERSTAND TURKEY'S CONCERNS REGARDING HER SECURITY AND ON A NEW MASS IMMIGRATION FROM IRAQ''WASHINGTON, Feb 12 (A.A) - The US Administration said on Wednesday that the United States recognized Turkey's very real security concerns and its desire to avoid a repeat of the massive influx of refugees experienced in 1991 and they want to work constructively with the government of Turkey on these issues.
James Rubin, the Spokesman of the US State Department responding to a question said they did not have information to confirm that the Turkish Army has entered Northern Iraq, adding that Turkish officials have disclosed that such an operation has not occurred.
Rubin said that the Turkish soldiers have entered Northern Iraq from time to time for limited periods and to destroy weapon depots and bases of the separatist terrorist PKK organization.
''We have consistently supported the right of the Turkish government to defend herself against terrorism as long as any operations are limited in scope and duration and fully respect the rights of the civilian inhabitants of the region,'' he said.
Responding to another question, Rubin said that Madeleine Albright, the US Secretary of State spoke with the Turkish Prime Minister Mesut Yilmaz about the Iraqi crisis and recalled that Marc Grossman, the Assistant Secretary of State and Gen. Ralston, the Deputy Chief of General Staff visited Ankara.
Rubin said that Albright was pleased with the telephone conversations which she had with Prime Minister Yilmaz, adding that Marc Parris, the US Ambassador to Ankara was continously in contact with the Turkish government.
The Spokesman said that Turkish government has also urged Iraqi Head of State Saddam Hussein to abide by the UN resolutions.
 TURKEY-ACCIDENT - TWO COMMUTER TRAINS COLLIDE HEAD ON BETWEEN THE PENDIK AND KAYNARCA STATIONSISTANBUL, Feb 12 (A.A) - Two commuter trains collided head on between the Pendik and Kaynarca stations in Istanbul, it was reported on Thursday.
A commuter train, which departed from the Pendik station at 09.06 a.m., and another commuter train, which departed from the Kaynarca station at 08.49 a.m., crashed in the western part of the Pendik station.
The commuter trains are not allowed to depart from the stations due to the train accident.
There were no immediate casualties but there are reports of ten injuries in the accident.
 TURKEY-UKRAINE - PRIME MINISTER YILMAZ LEAVES FOR THE UKRAINEANKARA, Feb 12 (A.A) - Prime Minister Mesut Yilmaz left for the Ukraine on Thursday on a two day work visit as the official guest of the Ukrainian President Leonid Kuchma.
State Ministers Cavit Kavak, Gunes Taner and Hasan Gemici and Murat Basesgioglu, the Minister of the Interior, several deputies and businessmen and reporters are accompanying Yilmaz during the visit.
Speaking before his departure Yilmaz said he believed that the visit would contribute to the improvement of relations and to regional peace and stability.
Yilmaz said that this would be the first visit at the Prime Ministerial level between Turkey and the Ukraine after the Ukraine gained her independence.
Yilmaz said that Turkey regarded the Ukraine as a neighbour having priority as well as a country which may play a very important role in the peace, stability and welfare of Europe and Euroasia adding that ''we attribute importance to the preservation of the Ukraine's independence, sovereignity and territorial integrity and to the starting of the economic reform process.''
Noting that during the visit, he would meet with President Kuchma, Prime Minister Pustovoytenko and Parliament Speaker Moroz, Yilmaz said, ''we will focus on additional steps which will be taken jointly to improve the economic dimensions of our relations with the Ukraine.''
Yilmaz said that agreements which will strengthen the basis of two countries' relations will be signed during the visit.
Prime Minister Yilmaz said that he would also pay a visit to Crimea Autonomous Republic, adding that Turkey appreciated the efforts made by the Ukraine to solve the problems of the Crimean Tatars. Yilmaz said that Turkey would continue to contribute to these efforts with her own facilities.
Yilmaz said that a 1000 housing project which would contribute to the solution of the Crimean Tatars' settlement problem started last September, stressing that ''The Turkish Red Crescent is sending humanitarian aid to the Crimea because of my visit.''
 TURKEY-MOTOROLA-SETKOM - MOTOROLA AND SETKOM ESTABLISH A TRANSCEIVER COMMUNICATION COMPANY NAMED ''SETKOMNET'' IN TURKEY - MOTOROLA SHARES 49 PERCENT OF SETKOMNET'S CAPITALANKARA, Feb 12 (A.A) - The Motorola Inc., one of the giant companies in the world's communication sector and Setkom set up a new transceiver communication company named ''Setkomnet'' in Turkey, it was reported on Wednesday. The Motorola Inc., has a 49 percent share in the Setkomnet's capital, while Setkom has a 51 percent share in the new company's capital.
The agreement regarding the establishment of a new transceiver communication company in Turkey was signed between Setkom and Motorola Inc. on December 25, 1997, and the agreement was announced the same day at a reception which was also attended by Marc Parris, the US Ambassador.
Addressing the reception, Serif Egeli, the Setkom Executive Board Member said that the sales of Motorola in 1997 reached 30 billion US dollars and that Setkom controls more then 50 percent of Turkish transceiver market.
Egeli said, ''the aim for the establishment of this corporation between Motorola and Setkom Trunking Administration in Turkey is to provide faster transceiver communications firstly in Istanbul, Ankara and Bursa and then spread it throughout the country.''
Motorola Vice President Dan Walters said that through Setkomnet the Motorola Smartzone technology will be presented for use to the Turkish public.
 TURKEY-CASINOS - CASINOS CLOSED DOORSANKARA, Feb 12 (A.A) - The odds ran out Wednesday for Turkey's casinos. The debate which started with the casinos that were opened in 1983 in luxurious touristic installations in a bid to enliven the tourism sector ended on Wednesday at midnight.
When a government decree closing down the casinos went into effect, seventy- nine casinos throughout Turkey closed their doors on Wednesday at 24:00. Inspectors who went to the casinos together with the security forces gave the documents related to the closure to the casino authorities.
Meanwhile, an extreme demand came from the public as the closure decision approached. There were 9,200 game machines and 870 tables at the 79 casinos.
There were two casinos active in Adana, seven in Ankara, 18 in Antalya, six in Aydin, four in Izmir, eight in Mugla, one in Denizli, one in Balikesir, three in Bursa, two in Mersin, one in Nevsehir and 26 in Istanbul.
 TURKEY-PRESS REVIEW (1)These are brief summaries of some of the leading stories in Turkey's press on Feb 12, 1998. The Anadolu Agency does not verify these stories and does not vouch for their accuracy.
(Derived from Newsspot of the Turkish Directorate of General Press and Information.)
YILMAZ: TURKEY WON'T TAKE RISKS
GULF CRISIS: RUSSIA ASKS TURKEY NOT TO INVOLVE INCIRLIK
YILMAZ VISITS THE UKRAINE
CEM: NO SECURITY ZONE
CALL FROM MOSCOW FOR MEDICINE MARKET
(To be continued)
 TURKEY-PRESS REVIEW (2)These are brief summaries of some of the leading stories in Turkey's press on Feb 12, 1998. The Anadolu Agency does not verify these stories and does not vouch for their accuracy.
(Derived from Newsspot of the Turkish Directorate of General Press and Information.)
DEMIREL IN PARIS MATCH INTERVIEW
TURKISH GUARANTEE FOR TURKMENS
TURKEY CANCELS TALKS WITH THE IMF
ECEVIT CRITICIZES BRITAIN
Addressing his fellow deputies at the DSP's parliamentary group meeting, Ecevit said that he has softened his attitude towards the US, but added that he was not sure how truthful Washington's latest annoucements were. Ecevit, referred to the latest remarks made by British Foreign Secretary Robin Cook, that supposedly appeared in the Daily Telegraph and Guardian daily newspapers, saying that Britain would welcome a power vacuum in northern Iraq. He said that there was no possibility that the two respectable British newspapers would fabricate such stories. /Sabah- Milliyet/
(To be continued)
 TURKEY-PRESS REVIEW (3)These are brief summaries of some of the leading stories in Turkey's press on Feb 12, 1998. The Anadolu Agency does not verify these stories and does not vouch for their accuracy.
(Derived from Newsspot of the Turkish Directorate of General Press and Information.)
GERMAN COURT RELEASES LEADING PKK MEMBER
TWO PKK TERRORISTS KILLED
The terrorists, one of them a woman, ignored police calls to surrender and instead tried to shoot it out with the police. It was later reported that the two terrorists were in fact the militants who murdered police officer Ismail Akkoyunlu on November 28, 1997. False identity cards, two guns, bullets, and many organizational documents were found in the building. /Hurriyet/
UNION LEADER GABAGLIO IN ISTANBUL
VERGAU, ''PKK IS A TERRORIST ORGANIZATION''
Referring to the Luxembourg summit Vergau said, ''Turkey should not underestimate the positive aspects of the summit. First of all, Turkey's EU membership was accepted at a EU summit by inviting Turkey to the European Conference. Also a supporting strategy was suggested to Turkey to help her on her way to EU membership.'' Vergau noted that Turkey had ''a great inner potential''. He stressed that Germany was determined that Turkey should become an EU member and reach Partnership status in the Customs Union agreement. Vergau also pointed out that the EU would propose some further suggestions on strategies and help Turkey to evaluate the results of the Luxembourg summit. /Cumhuriyet/
SEZGIN RECEIVES PARRIS
Ambassador Parris said, ''I have to stress that America has not made any decision yet to use military power against Iraq. However, we discussed some issues directly related to Turkey such as the Turkmen region. We want to solve the crisis through peaceful means.'' /Sabah/
''TURKEY WILL NOT ESTABLISH A BUFFER-ZONE''
Utkan added that cooperation to solve problems was very important in the Middle East region and stressed that the period after a crisis was more important than the actual crisis period.'' /Sabah/
DEMIREL APPROVES NEW MIT UNDERSECRETARY
 TURKEY-US - KANDEMIR, TURKEY'S AMBASSADOR TO WASHINGTON: - ''THE US AND EU CAN NOT IGNORE OUR STRATEGIC REALITY''WASHINGTON, Feb 12 (A.A) - Nuzhet Kandemir, Turkey's Ambassador to Washington said on Thursday that there was a consensus of opinion in Turkey that religion should not be used as a means to policy, adding that the US and the European Union (EU) could not ignore Turkey's strategic reality.
Addressing an institution called the ''Metropolitan Club'', Kandemir talked about Turkey's internal and external policy.
Noting that the Constitutional Court within its function in the balance of forces and after a fully legal process decided to close the Welfare Party (RP), Kandemir said, ''just like all organisms, democracies preserve themselves against dangers which threaten their existence.'' Kandemir said that the US press misinterpreted the closure of RP and reflected like this.
Kandemir stressed that there was a consensus of opinion in Turkey that religion could not be used as a means for policy and recalled that several political parties in Europe were banned.
Kandemir emphasized that in the period after the cold war, Turkey's importance and the ''peaceful'' roles that it assumed in the most turbulent region of the world increased, and listed the dangers after the cold war as ''ethnical hatred and conflicts, mass destruction weapons, terrorism, organized crime and excessive nationalism.''
Kandemir said that Syria used terrorism as a foreign policy tool and caused thousands of people in Turkey to lose their lives, adding that Iraq was still a danger for regional and international peace and stability. Ambassador Kandemir stressed that Iraq should abide by the UN Security Council resolutions. ''A new war would negatively affect Turkey,'' he added.
Kandemir said that Turkey and Iran should find ways to live without intervening in each others' internal affairs pointing out that ''Turkey's main role in this turbulent region is to facilitate peace and stability.''
He said the olive branch that Turkey extended to Greece in March 1996 was still on the table, adding that ''we believe that we may turn the Aegean into a sea of friendship and that it is required.''
Mentioning about the dangers of a continious arms build-up by the Greek Cypriot side, Kandemir said that the EU, by deciding to initiate full membership negotiations with the Greek Cypriot side, may hit a mortal blow to the intercommunal talks on the Island.
Kandemir said that Turkey should take her place as a ''full partner'' in all the institutions of Europe.''
Turkish Ambassador harshly criticized the decisions of the Luxembourg Summit which excluded Turkey and said, ''this mistake should be corrected during Britain's term Presidency.''
 TURKEY-ALBANIA - CONTACTS OF ALBANIAN PRESIDENT MEIDANI IN ANKARA - PRESIDENT DEMIREL: ''OUR COOPERATION CONSTITUTES AN EXAMPLE FOR COUNTRIES IN THE REGION'' - ''WE WILL SEEK METHODS TO FURTHER IMPROVE OUR RELATIONS AND COOPERATION IN THE BILATERAL CONTACTS''ANKARA, Feb 12 (A.A) - President Suleyman Demirel said on Thursday that the good relations and cooperation between the Turkish and Albanian governments constitute an example for all the countries in the region.
President Suleyman Demirel received the Albanian President Recep Meidani at the Presidential Palace in Cankaya.
Emphasizing that they will seek methods to further improve the bilateral relations and cooperation between the two countries in every field during the meetings today, Demirel said that they will also exchange opinion on regional and international problems concerning the two countries.
Defining Albania as an important partner in several European forums, the Southeastern European Cooperation and the Black Sea Economic Cooperation processes all which provide service for peace and stability in the region, Demirel said, ''we want to contribute to peace and welfare in Southeastern Europe by strengthening our partnership.''
Albanian President Recep Meidani said that the ''positive'' relations between Turkey and Albania will continue.
Stressing that Turkey's attributes of peace and stability are important especially for Albania, Meidani said that they appreciate Turkey's support and financial assistance to Albania in recent years.
Demirel and Meidani then held a ''tete-a-tete'' meeting.
The delegations led by Demirel and Meidani then started their meetings.
 TURKEY-GREECE - PROPOSAL PACKAGE FROM FM CEM TO GREECE - ''LET US DEFINE THE AEGEAN PROBLEMS TOGETHER''ANKARA, Feb 12 (A.A) - Turkey on Thursday gave a note to Greece and called on them to solve all the problems in the Aegean through peaceful methods and also wanted a high level meeting to be realized between the foreign ministries of the two countries before the end of March.
Foreign Ministry statement said ''there was a tension between the relations as problems in the Aegean were delayed,'' adding that ''this situation may lead to a grave contradiction that will escalate the incidents even if they are not wanted.''
Turkey's initiative for a peaceful solution was conveyed to the UN Secretary General, the NATO Secretary General and the NATO member countries.
The note which was sent by Foreign Minister Ismail Cem to Dimitrios Nezeritis, the Greek Ambassador to Ankara said, ''we call on Greece for talks, agreement and making peace. The response which Greece would give to this initiative would help the exhibition of good will between the two countries. I hope that Greece, like Turkey, would reveal that it is peaceful and compromising.''
The note which was given to Greek Ambassador to Ankara proposed that:
-Turkey and Greece defining the Aegean problems together.
-Turning the Madrid Compromise which was realized between Turkey and Greece on July 8 with the mediation of the US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright into an official agreement.
-Developing and implementing ''Confidence Building Measures'' proposed by the NATO Secretary General by cooperating with the NATO Secretary General.
-The two governments' call for the ''Wise Men Group'' to work. The group is composed of representatives specified by the two countries to produce solutions for existing problems.
-Realization of a meeting of the high ranking officials of the foreign ministries of the two countries to discuss these proposals and realization of this meeting before March 1998 in Ankara or in Athens.
 TURKEY-INTERNAL - CONSTITUTIONAL COURT TO START READING ITS FULL VERDICT REGARDING THE CLOSURE OF THE WELFARE PARTY ON FRIDAYANKARA, Feb 12 (A.A) - The Constitutional Court delegation is expected to start reading its full verdict regarding the closure case of the Welfare Party (RP) on Friday, it was reported on Thursday. Guven Dincer, the Constitutional Court Deputy Chairman and two other members of the delegation completed writing their part of the full verdict. These separate parts will be integrated into one.
While reading the full verdict, the Constitutional Court delegation will also revise its verdict. If the delegation can not complete reading the full verdict, it may also work on the weekend.
If all this work is completed before the weekend, then the full verdict of the Constitutional Court regarding the closure of the Welfare Party (RP) is expected to be published in the Official Gazette on Monday or Tuesday at the latest.
The ban on the RP is not regarded as having come into force until the full verdict is read on Friday and then published in the Official Gazette within a few days.
Party leader Necmettin Erbakan, a former prime minister, was removed from parliament and banned from political leadership for five years under the same ruling.
 TURKEY-ILLEGAL MIGRATION - 110 IRAQIS AND THREE SOMALIAN PEOPLE TO BE DEPORTEDMUGLA, Feb 12 (A.A) - The Gendarme sent on Thursday 110 Northern Iraqi Turkmens and three Somalian people, who were captured in Hisaronu village and Bozburun village of Marmaris county in Mugla province last week, to the Habur Border Gate to be deported.
The Northern Iraqi Turkmen people, including many women and children, said that the crisis in the Gulf will negatively affect them, adding that ''we are returning to our country, but we are afraid.''
 TURKEY-PAKISTAN - STATE MINISTER KARA IN PAKISTAN - KARA WITHIN THIS FRAMEWORK OFFERS PAKISTAN NEW PRODUCTS TO VARY THE COMPOSITION OF BILATERAL TRADEANKARA, Feb 12 (A.A) - Burhan Kara, the Minister of State said on Thursday that the level of economic cooperation between Turkey and Pakistan is not in accord with the potential of the economies of the two countries.
Kara, within this framework offered Pakistan new products to vary the composition of bilateral trade.
Kara, who is in Pakistan for the Turkish-Pakistani Joint Economic Commission (JEC) meetings, met with Makbul Siddiki, the Pakistani Minister of Industry and with Sartaj Aziz, the Minister of Finance.
State Ministry said that the trade volume between the two countries was 93.3 million US dollars in 1994, 244.5 millior US dollars in 1995, 160.1 million US dollars in 1996 and 67.6 million US dollars in the first seven months of last year.
Kara said that he believes a ''platform'' should be established to determine necessary methods and equipment to further improve commercial relations and to establish new commercial products between the two countries when considering the existing level of Turkish-Pakistani commercial relations.
Kara offered Pakistan the imports of ''hazelnuts, green pistachio nuts, brine, black olives, apricots, dried figs and grapes, wheat, barley, detergent and soap, paper, cement, sugar and railway equipment'' to vary the composition of bilateral trade.
 TURKEY-IRAQ-UN - SITUATION AT THE INCIRLIK BASEADANA, Feb 12 (A.A) - While the tension between Iraq and the United Nations (UN) escalates, the movement continues at the Incirlik Air Base in Adana, it was reported on Thursday.
A total of 40 fighters including F-15s and F-16s, Tornadoes, EA-6B Prowlers and one KC-15 tanker aircraft took off between 07.00-13.00.
Officials at the base said that the flights were realized for training purposes and there was no increase or decrease in the number of personnel and equipment for the Northern Watch operation, which monitors the situation in Northern Iraq, due to the Gulf crisis.
 TURKEY-LATIN AMERICA - FOREIGN MINISTER CEM: ''LATIN AMERICA IS A REGION WHICH IS FAR AWAY, YET WE REGARD IT AS CLOSE TO US''ANKARA, Feb 12 (A.A) - Foreign Minister Ismail Cem hosted a luncheon on Thursday in honour of the Ambassadors to Turkey from the Latin American countries.
Addressing a statement before the luncheon, Foreign Minister Cem said that ''Latin America is a region which is far away, yet we regard it as close to us.''
Noting that the Foreign Ministry works on concrete projects to improve relations with the Latin American countries, Cem pointed out that ''our commercial relations with the Northern American countries develops. This development should also be realized with the Latin American countries.''
Cem emphasized the fact that Turkey focuses on economic diplomacy, adding that Turkey aims to revive her economic relations with these countries.
 TURKEY-FOREIGN POLITICS - PRIME MINISTER YILMAZ ARRIVES IN THE UKRAINE - YILMAZ: ''TURKEY IS WORRIED ABOUT THE ESTABLISHMENT OF A KURDISH STATE IN NORTHERN IRAQ''ANKARA/KIEV (A.A) - Prime Minister Mesut Yılmaz and an accompanying delegation arrived in Kiev, the capital of the Ukraine, on Thursday.
Prime Minister Yılmaz met with the Ukrainian President Leonid Kuchma in a working luncheon the same day.
Responding to the questions of journalists on his way to the Ukraine, Prime Minister Yılmaz said, ''I am going to the Ukraine to improve bilateral relations.''
Asked whether ''he is worried about the establishment of a Kurdish state in Northern Iraq,'' Yılmaz said that ''this is not only mine, but Turkey's concern. We have to be on the alert against such a possibility.''
Responding to another question about a possible migration from Northern Iraq to Turkey, Prime Minister Yılmaz said this is not the case, as the situation is under control.
''Armenia was not stable for a long time. There were claims that there was fraud during the latest elections held to choose the Head of State. I think new elections will be held on March 16 and this unstability will continue until then,'' said Yılmaz while responding to a question about Armenia. Yılmaz added that these developments may negatively affect the Nagorno- Karabakh problem.
Asked whether meetings with the IMF has been completely cancelled, Prime Minister Yılmaz said that this was not the case, ''we have to take several steps before meeting with the IMF again, we can start discussions with the IMF in March.''
 TURKEY-ACCIDENT (2) - A TOTAL OF 23 PERSONS INJURED - CRASH OF COMMUTER TRAINS DUE TO SIGNAL FAILUREISTANBUL, Feb 12 (A.A) - The reason for the head-on crash of the commuter trains near the Pendik station in Istanbul shortly after 9.00 a.m. was a ''signal failure'', it was reported on Thursday.
A total of 23 people including one train engineer were injured in the accident.
The injured people were taken for medical treatment at the Pendik State Hospital and at private hospitals.
Officials said that many of the injured were only slightly hurt but one was seriously wounded.
Officials said that the commuter trains had time to slow down before hitting each other, lessening the impact, adding that one of the train engineers jumped out of his cabin just before the collision.
 TURKEY-ALBANIA - PRESIDENT DEMIREL: ''WE HAVE DISCUSSED THE EIGHTH CORRIDOR THAT STARTS FROM THE ADRIATIC TO VARNA'' - ''WE AIM AT IMPROVEMENT OF COOPERATION AND PEACE IN THE BALKANS'' - ALBANIAN PRESIDENT MEYDANI: ''ALBANIA IS READY TO IMPROVE ITS POLITICAL DIALOGUE WITH TURKEY''ANKARA, Feb 12 (A.A) - The official meetings held between Turkish and Albanian delegations ended on Thursday. The two delegations signed the ''Agreement on Cooperation and Political Consultation'' and the ''Agreement on Reciprocal Assistance about Customs Administrations.''
Addressing a statement after the signature ceremony, President Suleyman Demirel said that they discussed during the official meetings the ''Eighth Corridor'' which will start from the shores of the Adriatic and reach the port of Varna in Bulgaria.
''The Adriatic will be linked to Central Asia by the construction of this corridor and the completion of the Batum corridor in the Caucasus,'' said Demirel.
President Demirel stated that bilateral relations and regional problems were mainly discussed during the meetings, adding that ''we aim at improvement of cooperation and peace in the Balkans.''
President Demirel called upon Turkish businessmen to be more interested in business opportunities and privatization issues in Albania.
The Albanian President Recep Meydani said that he is ready to improve the political dialogue between Turkey and Albania.
Noting that he welcomes defense cooperation between the two countries, Meydani stated that this cooperation also continues within the framework of the ''Partnership for Peace (PFP).''
President Meydani stressed that Turkey and Albania are in consensus of opinion regarding the fact that peace can not be established in the Balkans unless stability is ensured in Kosovo.
General Ismail Hakkı Karadayı, the Chief of General Staff visited with President Recep Meydani the same day.
Speaking before the meeting, Meydani thanked Turkey for cooperating with Albania in the field of military defense.
 TURKEY-GEORGIA - ASSASSINATION ATTEMPT ON THE GEORGIAN HEAD OF STATE SCHEVARDNADZE - STATE MINISTER ANDICAN: ''DEVELOPMENTS ARE CAUSING ANXIETY''ANKARA, Feb 12 (A.A) - Ahat Andican, the Minister of State and Government Spokesman said on Thursday that the assassination attempt on the Georgian Head of State Eduard Schevardnadze aims to upset the political stability in the region, adding that this development can negatively affect the Baku- Ceyhan pipeline.
Andican told the A.A correspondent that ''Schevardnadze is a statesman who has ensured stability in Georgia since 1993. Fortunately the attempt was not successful. Turkey attributes importance to every development which can upset the political stability in the region.''
Andican stressed that Turkey is worried about the fact that the Baku-Ceyhan pipeline can be affected by the negative developments in the Trans-Caucasus region.
 TURKEY IN BRIEF - FEBRUARY 12, 1998GAZIANTEP - The export of textile products in January from the Southeastern Anatolia Project (GAP) region increased 35,7 percent from 15.1 million US dollars in January 1997 to 20.5 million US dollars, it was reported on Thursday.
The Southeastern Anatolia Textile Products Exporters' Union officials told the A.A correspondent that the region exported textile products to Syria, Saudi Arabia, Italy, Belgium, Jordan, France, Lebanon, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan, Iran, Azerbaijan, Greece, Algeria, the US, Israel, Portugal and Russia.
VAN - An Iranian delegation led by Ismail Kerimzade, the Governor of the Iranian city of Hoy came to eastern Van province on Thursday.
Abdulkadir Sari, the Mayor of Van said that the aim of the meetings with the Iranian delegation is to create a good atmosphere at the border.
ANKARA - Pakistani Land Forces Chief Commander Gen. Jehangir Karamata will pay an official visit to Turkey between February 16-23 as the guest of the Land Forces Chief Commander Gen. Huseyin Kivrikoglu, it was reported on Thursday.
Guest Commander Gen. Karamata will visit the Land Forces Commandership in Ankara on February 17.
ANKARA - The number of people visiting Turkey last year was 9,712,000, it was reported on Thursday.
The State Institute of Statistics (DIE) data shows that a total of 419 thousand people visited Turkey in December 1997.
ISTANBUL - The ''12th Istanbul International Construction and Decoration Equipment Industrial Fair'' named Construction'98, was opened on Thursday.
A total of 98 domestic and foreign companies have stands at the Construction'98 which was organized by the Interteks Fair.
Construction'98 will remain open until February 15.
People can visit the stands between 12.00-20.00.
 TRNC - TRNC PARLIAMENT DISCUSSES THE ''CYPRUS ISSUE'' - TRNC PRESIDENT DENKTAS: ''THE TRNC PARLIAMENT SHOULD ACCEPT A TWO-STATE PRINCIPLE''LEFKOSA, Feb 12 (A.A) - The Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) Parliament convened on Thursday in order to evaluate the recent developments regarding the Cyprus issue.
Addressing the TRNC Parliament, the TRNC President Rauf Denktas asked the parliament to accept that a two-state principle should be taken as the basis for negotiations regarding the Cyprus question.
Denktas stated that intercommunal negotiations have impeded the TRNC being recognized as a state for years and have given new opportunites to the Greek Cypriots, adding that the only way to stop this development is by holding meetings between the ''states.''
Denktas pointed out that ''absolute division and maintaining responsibility for the TRNC'' are the only ways to stop the Greek Cypriots who aim at ''Enosis''(Union with Greece).
Denktas stressed that he will continue to defend continuation of the guarantee system and rejecting the status of minority on Cyprus.
The TRNC Prime Minister Dervis Eroglu said that the TRNC will improve its special relations with Turkey in return for holding full membership negotiations between the European Union (EU) and the Greek Cypriot side.
Eroglu pointed out that peace on the island can only be established by accepting the existence of two separate states.
 TURKEY-MILITARY - ONE LIEUTENANT AND FOUR SOLDIERS BECAME LOST WHILE RETURNING FROM OPERATION - EIGHT SOLDIERS RESCUED BY HELICOPTERSELAZIG, Feb 12 (A.A) - One lieutenant and three soldiers returning from an operation in the rural parts of Palu and Aricak counties of eastern Elazig province became lost, it was reported on Thursday.
The lieutenent and the soldiers fell into a stream and got caught up in the current while crossing the Murat River in Elazig.
The rescue activities started in the region and the rescue teams found the dead body of a soldier. The rescue activities are continuing.
Meanwhile, eight soldiers, who were returning from an operation in the same region, overcame the danger of freezing because of the extremely cold weather. The soldiers were rescued by helicopters and taken for medical treatment at the Elazig Military Hospital.
The operations against the separatist terrorist PKK organization are underway in the region.
 TURKEY-FOREIGN DEBT - TURKEY REPAYS 1.7 BILLION US DOLLARS OF FOREIGN DEBT SINCE JANUARY 1, 1998ANKARA, Feb 12 (A.A) - Turkey repaid 1.7 billion US dollars of foreign debt since the beginning of this year, it was reported on Thursday.
The Central Bank data shows that the Treasury paid 1.3 billion US dollars; the Central Bank paid 42.9 million US dollars; the Ministry of Defense and the Defense Industry paid 380.4 million US dollars of foreign debt between January 1 and February 11, 1998.
Meanwhile, the total foreign debt payment last month was 1.3 billion US dollars and 400 million US dollars between February 1 to 11.
 TURKEY IN BRIEF (2)- FEBRUARY 12, 1998ANKARA - The Turkish-Georgian Interparliamentary Friendship Group Co- Chairman Rostom Dolidze and the accompanying delegation, who came to Ankara as the official guest of the Parliament, concluded their contacts on Wednesday.
The Turkish-Georgian Interparliamentary Friendship Group Co-Chairmen Suleyman Hatinoglu and Rostom Dolidze held a joint press briefing at the Parliament regarding the contacts.
Suleyman Hatinoglu said that economic, social and cultural issues were covered during the Georgian delegation's contacts.
Rostom Dolidze said that the relations between the two countries will be further improved.
ANKARA - The Tajik Speaker of the Parliament Seferali Recebov and the accompanying parliamentary delagation will pay an offical visit to Turkey between February 15-19 as the guest of Hikmet Cetin, the Turkish Speaker of the Parliament, it was reported on Thursday.
Seferali Recebov and the accompanying delegation will meet with Hikmet Cetin on February 16 at the Dolmabahce Palace in Istanbul.
The Tajik delegation will then proceed to Ankara on February 17 and meet with Murat Karayalcin, the Chairman of the Parliament Foreign Affairs Commission and Sadi Somuncuoglu, the Chairman of the Turkish-Tajik Friendship Group.
The delegation will be received by President Suleyman Demirel, Prime Minister Mesut Yilmaz and State Minister Sukru Sina Gurel on February 18.
The Tajik parliamentary delegation will leave Turkey on February 19.
EDIRNE - Three Romanians, who were trying to enter Turkey illegally, were captured at Edirne, it was reported on Thursday.
Security officials took under custody the three Romanians who illegally entered Turkey from Greece.
ANKARA - Chief of General Staff Gen. Ismail Hakki Karadayi received his Albanian counterpart Gen. Alex Andoni on Thursday.
Gen. Karadayi and Gen. Andoni held a ''tete-a-tete'' meeting at the Headquarters of the General Staff in Ankara.
 TURKEY-HUNGARY - ASSAILANT WHO PUNCHED PRIME MINISTER YILMAZ SURRENDERSANKARA-KIEV, Feb 12 (A.A) - Prime Minister Mesut Yılmaz said on his way to Ukraine on Thursday that Veysel Ozerdem, the assailant who had punched him in Budapest, the capital of Hungary in November 1996, surrendered to the Hungarian police.
Yılmaz told reporters that Ozerdem will come to Turkey within few days.
Prime Minister Yılmaz stated that when the Hungarian police freezes Ozerdem, he will come to Turkey by himself.
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