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Anadolu Agency: News in English, 98-02-18
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From: The Anadolu Agency Home Page at <http://www.anadoluajansi.gov.tr/>
18 FEB 1998
 TURKEY-PRESS SCANThese are some of the major headlines and their brief stories in Turkey's press on Feb 18, 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) IT'S THE LIMIT!
MILLIYET (LIBERAL)COUNTING BACK STARTS
The US President Bill Clinton made a show of force at the Pentagon and warned the Iraqi President Saddam Hussein for the last time. Prime Minister Mesut Yilmaz and Chief of General Staff İsmail Hakkı Karadayi met in Ankara.
SABAH (LIBERAL)SITUATION IN TURKEY
The prosecutor kills a man and is released. The Gendarme helps the convicts to escape from prison.
CUMHURIYET (LEFT)THE AIM WAS TO INFILTRATE THE ARMY
Ismail Ozdemir and Serhat Ozkan, who grew up in Fetullah Gulen's schools and turned their memories into a book said ''Gulen's aim is to establish an administrative class in Turkey and the neighboring countries through his schools.'' They also said Gulen aimed at being effective in education, the army and business circles.
RADIKAL (LEFT)CILLER CAN NOT PERSUADE ERBAKAN
DYP leader Tansu Ciller and RP leader Necmettin Erbakan could not agree on many issues after the collapse of the Refahyol government. These two leaders contradicted each other on the election issue.
YENİ YÜZYIL (LIBERAL)MIT ACCUSES CILLER
Demirel to bring together the leaders in Cankaya immediately after the Susurluk case. The National Intelligence Organization (MIT) presents a note of information to Erbakan: Ciller gave confirmation for the coup to Azeri President Haydar Aliev.
TÜRKİYE (RIGHT)SULEYMAN THE MAGNIFICENT
France is getting prepared to host President Demirel. The famous Le Point and Paris Match Magazines mentioned Demirel's visit. Le Point used ''Suleyman the Magnificent'' as the headline.
ZAMAN (CONSERVATIVE)LATEST HOPES IN CRISIS
Hopes for peace still continue despite the policies of the US and Britain supporting war in the Gulf Crisis. The world watches Annan's visit to Baghdad.
 TURKEY-CROATIA - INTERIOR MINISTER BASESGIOGLU LEAVES FOR CROATIAISTANBUL, Feb 18 (A.A) - Murat Basesgioglu, the Minister of the Interior said on Tuesday that Turkey attributed a special importance to the Balkans to prevent the efforts of the terrorist organizations to create new fields of activity.
Basesgioglu left for Croatia on Tuesday as the official guest of Ivan Penic, the Croatian Interior Minister.
Addressing a news conference before his departure from the Istanbul Ataturk Airport Basesgioglu stressed that there was a frienship and cooperation between Turkey and Croatia based on history and that this was reflected in the field of security cooperation.
Basesgioglu said that during the visit they would take up drug trafficking, weapons and human smuggling which is thought to be one of the sources of finance for international terrorism.
''Our ministry attributes a special importance to the Balkans within the framework of the efforts of the terrorist organizations to create new fields of activity,'' Basesgioglu said, adding that ''in parallel with this, we will exchange views on the strategies of the terrorist organizations, organized crimes, the importance of structuring in Croatia and the situation of the Turkish people living in Croatia.''
 TURKEY-EUROPE - TURKISH-EUROPEAN RELATIONS - GERMAN AND BELGIAN FOREIGN MINISTERS: ''THE GATES OF EUROPE WILL REMAIN OPEN TO TURKEY''BONN, Feb 18 (A.A) - Klaus Kinkel, the German Foreign Minister received Erik Derycke, the Belgian Foreign Minister in Furstenberg Palace in Weser, Germany on Tuesday.
The two ministers said in a joint statement, where ''Turkish-European'' relations were also discussed, that the gates of Europe will be kept open to Turkey.
Claiming that the Council of Europe in Luxembourg made an acceptable proposal to Turkey with the name of ''European strategy'', Kinkel and Derycke stressed the importance of normalizing relations between Turkey and Greece. Kinkel and Derycke called on both countries to adopt a ''more constructive attitude.''
The two ministers also stressed that Iraq should fully abide by the resolutions of the UN, adding that all efforts should be expended to bring a political and diplomatic solution to the crisis.
 TURKISH PRESS REVIEW (1)These are brief summaries of some of the leading stories in Turkey's press on Feb 18, 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.)
PRESIDENT DEMIREL CONFERS WITH ARAB LEADERS
FRANCE: DEMIREL'S VISIT IS IMPORTANT
Meanwhile, the weekly Paris-Match magazine, in its latest issue, gives coverage to an interview with President Demirel. Regarding the Iraq crisis, Demirel is quoted as saying: ''We always support diplomatic means.'' /Milliyet/
CHINESE-TURKISH ECONOMIC TIES
The two leaders also discussed the current tense situation in the Middle East. They agreed that the continuing crisis between the US and Iraq should be resolved by peaceful means. Later in the day, the Foreign Minister and his delegation visited the Great Wall of China. Cem is scheduled to leave Beijing today for Shanghai, where he is expected to hold talks on plans to open a Turkish trade centre there. /Milliyet/
MILITARY URGES ALL COUNTRIES TO BAN THE PKK
The visit was organized by the General Staff especially for foreign correspondents in Turkey, in order to inform them about the military's struggle against PKK terrorist activities in the Southeast, to visit military facilities in the region, and have interviews with civilians there. Maj.Gen.Erol Ozkasnak of the General Staff, who briefed the correspondents in Ankara before departure, said the visit was aimed at clearing up ''misunderstandings'' about the Turkish military in the foreign press. He said that the PKK has been ''marginalized'', and that the numbers of PKK members as well as their logistical support were almost exhausted. Ozkasnak, secretary-general of the General Staff, also told reporters that operations in the Southeast were carried out with care to avoid violating human rights in the region. /Sabah-Milliyet/
(To be continued)
 TURKEY-PKK - PKK'S FOREIGN SUPPORT - GENERAL STAFF ''PKK IS NOT ONLY A TERRORIST ORGANIZATION BUT AT THE SAME TIME A CRIME ORGANIZATION PARTICIPATING IN VARIOUS ORGANIZED CRIMES''ANKARA, Feb 18 (A.A) - The General Staff said on Tuesday that the separatist terrorist PKK organization is not only a terrorist organization but at the same time a crime organization participating in various organized crimes. The General Staff stressed that for the first time an organization was involved in drug trafficking in Europe including obtaining drugs, their transportation and distribution.
The General Staff which staged a news tour to Southeastern Turkey for the representatives of foreign press organizations in Turkey briefed the journalists about the supports provided to the PKK from various countries and the sources of income of the PKK.
During the briefing it was said that ''the PKK's activities are pursued intensively through 313 offices, 178 of them in Germany.''
It was reported that the separatist terrorist organization targeted distributing its supporters to Europe by promoting and organizating immigration to Europe, adding that ''furthermore, the organization, as a part of the expansion policy, is involved in organized terrorism incidents and in an effort to collect the necessary sources of money to broaden its terrorist activities.''
It said this income is used to finance purchases of weapons and ammunition and stressed that the banning of the PKK and its front organization in Germany and in France at the end of 1993 reduced the financial and moral support to the organization. As a result of this, the PKK moved its several activities to other European countries, mainly the Central and Eastern European countries.
It was said that Greece was one of the countries extending the greatest support to the separatist PKK. ''Greece, by re-activating the Lavrion Refugee Camp near Athens, provided a shelter for the PKK terrorists who fled from Turkey. There is a training camp in the northwest of Athens where weapons and explosive devices were tested,'' it was said.
It was said that the PKK terrorists in the camps often infiltrate into Turkey to engage in terrorist activities in Turkey. Many PKK terrorists who were captured confessed that they were trained in Greece.
The briefing mentioned that the PKK terrorists were also supported by the Greek Cypriot side, stressing that the Greek Cypriot side can easily make contacts with Europe by using its own facilities.
During the briefing it was said that the PKK activities in Russia intensified recently, adding that Russia, with ethnical groups, were especially closely interested in the Kurdish groups.
It was said that Iran also provided facilities to the separatist organization to make use of her territory, and added that ''there are around 450-500 terrorists of the PKK deployed in Iran. They are sheltering in camps in Iran.''
It was said that the separatist terrorist organization had the camps of Dambat, Katur, Keleres, Serov, Jermi and Ziveh in Iran and that Iran provided health, weapons, ammunition and logistic support to the PKK.
The briefing said that Iran was in an effort to include the activities in Northern Iraq with the effective communications network she installed and with organizations like the Kurdish Hezbollah.
Mentioning the final goals of the separatist terrorist PKK organization in Northern Iraq, the briefing said ''the separatist terrorist PKK organization aimed at putting an end to the effectiveness of the Iraqi Kurdish Democratic Party led by Massoud Barzani and the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK) led by Jalal Talabani.'' It said the final goal of the PKK is to be the leading force in Northern Iraq.
It said Syria used the PKK terrorist organization as a trump card for her problems with Turkey, adding that ''Syria claims rights in our Southern Hatay Province and shows this region as her territory on the maps. The other problem between Turkey and Syria is the waters of Euphrates River. Syria wants to use a trump card for bargaining to use against Turkey when she wants. Syria thinks that the PKK is the most appropriate tool for reaching her goals.''
''Within this framework, Syria shelters the chief of the separatist terrorist PKK organization and extends every kind of support to the PKK. Syria tolerates infiltration of the terrorists into Turkey and Northern Iraq and provides facilities to the Syrian citizens of Kurdish origin. There are a lot of PKK camps at the Syrian borders which are very close to Turkey and terrorists use these camps to enter Turkey,'' the briefing stated.
Listing the financial sources of the separatist PKK, the links of the organization with drug trafficking were mentioned. It said, ''the PKK markets to Europe the drugs coming from Southeastern Asia and the Middle East.''
During the briefing it was stressed that the separatist terrorist PKK was a fierce terrorist organization massacring innocent civilian people as well as participating in various organized crimes.
The briefing said several Western countries still tolerated activities of the separatist PKK organization, adding that ''it is getting harder to persuade the Turkish people that measures taken by several western countries are enough to put an end to the activities of the separatist PKK.''
It said the most important part of the issue was the attitude of the countries which shelter the PKK terrorists and their supporters and stressed that this attitude is an open violation of international commitments. International decisions should be implemented immediately when terrorist groups exploit the democratic conditions in the countries in which they shelter in order to launch terrorist activities against third countries.
 TURKEY-US - IRAQ-UN CRISIS - CLINTON: ''OUR MILITARY POWER WOULD NOT BE POSSIBLE IF THERE WAS NOT THE SUPPORT OF THE FRIENDLY ALLY COUNTRIES INCLUDING TURKEY''WASHINGTON, Feb 18 (A.A) - The US President Bill Clinton on Tuesday warned Iraqi President Saddam Hussein for the last time and said that they are ready to use military power, but a diplomatic solution is still possible.
Clinton said if there was not the support of the friendly ally countries including Turkey, it would not be possible to deploy US military powers in the region, adding that any military operation that will be aimed at Iraq would be an open message to dictators and terrorists.
Clinton said if he tolerated Saddam, then other outlawed countries and terrorists would think that the world remained without a solution. Clinton said he guaranteed that somebody would certainly use those deadly weapons that time.
 TURKISH PRESS REVIEW (2)These are brief summaries of some of the leading stories in Turkey's press on Feb 18, 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.)
EREZ's VISIT TO US CANCELLED
A visit by Turkish Industry and Trade Minister Yalim Erez to the US on 26 February to attend a Turkish-American Business Council meeting has been cancelled following a death in his family. /Sabah/
ELECTRICITY FROM RUSSIA
ANKARA MAKES CHANGES FOR TURKISH CITIZENS ABROAD
In a circular released by the office of the Prime Ministry on this issue, studies are being made according to the 62nd article of the constitution. The circular also notes that the number of Turks living abroad has increased to 3.5 million. /Hurriyet/
KARAMATA IN ANKARA
SHATTUCK VISITS TURKEY
In addition, State Minister Turk said that in response to Shattuck's visit, he is planning to visit the US. Turk and Shattuck will meet again after the US envoy's other meetings. Shattuck will go to Istanbul, Diyarbakir and Mardin for further consultations and research. /All papers/
(To be continued)
 TURKISH PRESS REVIEW (3)These are brief summaries of some of the leading stories in Turkey's press on Feb 18, 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.)
UN PREPARES TO RELAUNCH CYPRUS TALKS
OIL PRICES TO INCREASE AUTOMATICALLY
MINISTRY'S NEW DRAFT AIMS TO ESTABLISH GENDER EQUALITY
ISTANBUL INTERNATIONAL BOOK FAIR
During an introductory press meeting yesterday, the representatives of the organizers claimed that this book fair will be the most animated of all the book fairs held in Turkey. Susanna Tamaro, Erica Ficher, Paul Strathern and Nihat Behran are some of the authors who will visit the fair./Hurriyet/
 TURKEY-FRANCE - IMPORTANT VISIT FROM TURKEY TO FRANCE - PRESIDENT DEMIREL DUE TO ARRIVE IN PARIS ON THURSDAY AS THE OFFICIAL GUEST OF CHIRACPARIS, Feb 18 (A.A) - President Suleyman Demirel will come to Paris on Thursday as the official guest of the French President Jacques Chirac, it was reported on Wednesday.
Demirel's visit is the first official contact at the highest level from Turkey to France in 30 years. President Cevdet Sunay officially visited France in 1968 and former French President Francois Mitterrand visited Turkey in 1992 as the official guest of Turgut Ozal, the Turkish President at that time.
The State Ministers Rifat Serdaroglu, Isin Celebi and Culture Minister Istemihan Talay will accompany Demirel during the visit.
Bilateral relations as well as the Iraqi crisis, developments in the Balkans and the Turkish-European Union (EU) relations will be on the top the agenda of Demirel-Chirac meeting.
Chirac, once again, is expected to bring up the issue of the participation of Turkey in the upcoming European Conference which will take place in Britain.
Turkey earlier disclosed that she would not enter into a political dialogue with the EU and would not participate in the European Conference unless the Luxembourg decisions are being reviewed. France said that the European Conference will lose importance if Turkey does not participate in it.
A ''Statement of Intention'' is expected to be signed between the two countries foreseeing ''strategic cooperation''. Diplomatic sources said the cooperation in question includes economic, political and cultural issues.
Demirel who is scheduled to meet with the French President Chirac in the Elysee Palace on Feb 19 will also receive the French Ministers responsible for the economy, culture and European Affairs.
Demirel will later address a conference titled ''Turkey in the 2000s'' at the French International Foreign Policy Institute.
On Feb 20, Demirel will participate in a breakfast that will be hosted by the French Employers Union and will confer a medal of merit to three French scientists due to their studies in Turkology.''
President Demirel will later receive French Prime Minister Lionel Jospin after participating in a ceremony that will be staged in his honor by Jean Tiberi, the Mayor of Paris and will leave Paris on Friday.
France is one of the major European countries investing in Turkey in the recent years.
 TURKEY-CROATIA - INTERIOR MINISTER BASESGIOGLU IN CROATIA - BASESGIOGLU: ''WE WILL EXTEND FULL SUPPORT TO OUR FRIENDS WHO STRUGGLE AGAINST GANGS AND ORGANIZED CRIME''ZAGREB, Feb 18 (A.A) - Murat Basesgioglu, the Minister of the Interior said on Wednesday that as the political authority they would extend full support to security officials in their struggle against gangs and organized crime, adding that the police will not tolerate organized crime goups establishing authority.
Basesgioglu, currently in Croatia as the official guest of Ivan Panic, the Croatian Interior Minister, responding to the questions of journalists said that a draft prepared by the Justice and Interior Ministries was presented to the agenda of the Council of Ministers for overcoming several lacking aspects in the struggle against organized crimes.
When asked whether or not political support was extended to organized crime groups, Basesgioglu said ''of course illegal crime organizations are getting several supports. Still, no politician or bureaucrat can prevent our determination in this respect.''
 TURKEY IN BRIEF - FEBRUARY 18, 1998ANKARA - President Suleyman Demirel received the members of the American- Jewish Committee (AJC) Executive Board on Tuesday.
ANKARA - President Suleyman Demirel received on Tuesday Gen. Jehangir Karamata, Chief of the Pakistani Land Forces, who is currently holding contacts in Turkey as the official guest Gen. Huseyin Kıvrıkoglu, the Chief Commander of the Land Forces.
Gen. Kivrikoglu also attended the meeting at the Cankaya Presidential Palace.
ANKARA - President Suleyman Demirel approved on Tuesday the Council of Ministers' decision regarding the agreement signed between Turkey and Hungary.
The Presidential Press Center said in a written statement that President Suleyman Demirel approved the Council of Ministers' decision regarding the approval of the agreement concerning the setting up of a free trade zone. The agreement was signed in Budapest on January 8, 1997.
KOCAELI - Thila Bode, the General Director of the Greenpeace, held a press briefing in Kocaeli on Tuesday.
Bode criticized at the briefing the positive report of the Kocaeli Municipality regarding the Clinical and Dangerous Waste Incineration Plant.
Bode said, ''which values are taken as a basis for calculating the effects of this plant on the environment? Those standards are always open for negotiation.''
''Turkey should not make the same mistakes as the developed countries when transferring technology. Otherwise, the mistakes are also transferred,'' Bode said.
TBILISI - Refaiddin Sahin, the Minister of State and the accompaying parliamentary delegation were received on Tuesday by Georgian President Eduard Shevardnadze.
Refaiddin Sahin conveyed to Shevardnadze ''a wish for a speedy recovery from the assasination attempt'' from President Suleyman Demirel, Hikmet Cetin, the Speaker of the Parliament, Prime Minister Mesut Yilmaz and Turkish people in the meeting which lasted for nearly one hour.
Refaiddin Sahin and the accompanying delegation left Tbilisi and returned to Turkey the same day.
BONN - The Turkish-German Association (DTG) based in Bonn, Germany concluded its general council studies and elected its new members of executive board, it was reported on Tuesday.
Hayati Onel was elected as the Chairman of the DTG and Dr. Eckehart Eickhoff as the Deputy Chairman of the DTG. Eickoff was the former German Ambassador to Turkey.
MUGLA - Manfred Unger, the German Consul General in Izmir, met with Cemil Serhadli, the Governor of Mugla Province on Tuesday.
Unger then visited the Mugla Administration of Justice, Directorate of Security and later proceeded to Marmaris.
ANKARA - The Parliament and the Tajik Parliament on Tuesday signed an ''Interparliamentary Cooperation Protocol''.
The parliaments of the two countries will realize interparliamentary cooperation to strengthen the relations between Turkey and Tajikistan in accordance with the protocol signed by the Speakers of the Parliaments of the two countries.
ANKARA - Istemihan Talay, the Minister of Culture gave a dinner on Tuesday in honour of Anatoliy Franjuk, the Prime Minister of the Crimean Autonomous Republic Franjuk and Mustafa Abdulcemil Kırımoglu, the Speaker of the Crimean Tatars Parliament.
The Crimean delegation will continue its contacts on Wednesday.
IZMIR - The Turkish Vakiflar Bank provided a syndicated loan of 50 million US dollars from abroad to ''spread exports throughout the country and to meet the financing requirements of the exports'', it was reported on Tuesday.
The credit, which was provided with the participation of 16 banks providing service in the international markets and the leadership of Vakifbank, Citibank and Commerzbank, will have a one-year-term and interest payments will be given two times a year. The interest will be libor-plus 0.70.
 US-TURKEY-IRAQ - WASHINGTON HAS ''ABSOLUTE CONFIDENCE'' IN TURKEY'S SUPPORTWASHINGTON, Feb 18 (A.A) - The US Administration on Wednesday said it has an ''absolute confidence'' that Turkey would extend support for a possible operation that would be launched against Iraq.
Samuel Berger, the White House National Security Advisor, responding to questions in a TV program said they hoped that the UN Secretary General Kofi Annan's visit to Baghdad would be successful. Berger said it was a ''must'' that the UNSCOM should make investigations in Iraq without meeting any obstacles. He said any bargaining on the issue was out of the question and that they had told this to Secretary General Kofi Annan.
Responding to a question that even Turkey and Saudi Arabia do not support the US and would not let their bases to be used, Berger said he did not share the same views. Berger said these countries could understand the threats of Saddam to the region and to themselves. He said he had no doubt that the US would have the full support of these countries.
Stating that Saddam was an aggressive dictator, Berger said they would not let this dictator drag the region into instability. Berger also expressed the hope that Kofi Annan would persuade Saddam.
Meanwhile, the Former US President George Bush told the CNN that he supported Bill Clinton and that a strict policy should be applied against Saddam and added that Saddam violated the international rules and agreements he had signed.
When asked why they did not destroy Saddam during the Gulf War when they had the chance, Bush said their mission was to put an end to the occupation of Kuwait. He said that the multi-national coalition would have been split up if they had entered Baghdad. Maybe Britain and Kuwait would have been with us, but Saudi Arabia and the other Gulf countries would not confirm the occupation of an Arab country, he said, stating that Turkey would also have left the coalition. Syria and Hosni Mubarak would also have left the coalition, he added. He said the US might have remained as an occupying force in Arab territory and the Madrid Peace Conference would never have been realized.
 TURKEY-INTERNAL - STATE MINISTER GUNES TANER: - ''WE WANT TO IMPLEMENT THE SYSTEM OF THE EUROPEAN UNION FOR SETTING THE PRICE OF FUEL PRODUCED AT OUR REFINERIES'' - ''WE WILL NOT INCREASE THE PRICE OF FUEL''ANKARA, Feb 18 (A.A) - Gunes Taner, the Minister of State said on Tuesday that they want to implement the system of the European Union (EU) for setting the price of fuel.
Responding to the questions of reporters before the meeting of the Higher Planning Council (YPK), Gunes Taner said that they will not increase the price of fuel, adding that it is also important for the privatization of the Turkish Petroleum Refinery, Inc. (Tupras).
Remembering that the refineries of the Tupras had been divided for privatization, Taner said they will be able to privatize all of them on a refinery basis.
Stating that they vowed not to increase the price of fuel between December 1997 and May 1998, Taner said, ''we are still keeping our word. But we also said that we will keep our word if oil prices do not increase much. Now, there is not any increase in the oil prices.''
Responding to a question, Taner said the domestic debt is 304 trillion liras.
 TURKEY-IRAQ-UN - PRESIDENT DEMIREL PHONES KUWAITI EMIR AL SABAH AND EXCHANGES VIEWS WITH HIM REGARDING THE IRAQI CRISISANKARA, Feb 18 (A.A) - President Suleyman Demirel phoned Kuwaiti Emir Jaber Al Ahmad Al Jaber Al Sabah on Wednesday morning and exchanged views with him regarding the Iraq-UN crisis. Demirel informed Al Sabah about the initiatives of Turkey.
The Presidential Press Center said that President Demirel told Al Sabah that Turkey did not receive a sign regarding the solution of the crisis diplomatically, nevertheless it is important to extend support to the initiatives which still continue to disperse the tension.
President Demirel stressed in his phone conversation that Iraq should abide by the UN Security Council Resolutions and should cooperate with the UN Special Commission, so that the crisis can be overcome.
President Demirel pointed out that Turkey does not favour military measures, which will cause negative consequences. It attributes importance to the protection of Iraqi territorial integrity and it will continue to fulfill its obligations regarding this crisis as a neighbour state.
Kuwaiti Emir Al Jaber Al Sabah told Demirel that Kuwait appreciates and supports the sensitivity of Turkey regarding the situation in Iraq, adding that he agrees with the views of Demirel and will continue to exchange views with Demirel.
 TURKEY-IRAQ-UN - FOREIGN MINISTRY: ''SUPPORT OF TURKEY TO THE US CONSISTS OF ONLY THE DISCOVERY FROM THE NORTH OPERATION''ANKARA, Feb 18 (A.A) - The Foreign Ministry said on Wednesday that the ''support of Turkey to the US'' consists of only the protection of the existence of the Northern Watch Operation as a response to the statement of US President Bill Clinton who said that ''we have got the support of Turkey.''
Necati Utkan, the Foreign Ministry Spokesman told a press briefing that Turkey expects the diplomatic contacts of the UN Secretary General Kofi Annan to be ''positive'' regarding the solution of the crisis between Iraq and UN.
Utkan pointed out that a military operation will harm Iraq and the people in the region.
Mentioning the statements of Taha Yasin Ramazan, the Iraqi Deputy Head of State, Utkan stressed that ''the discourse and the style of Ramazan are not in conformity with the statements issued during Foreign Minister Ismail Cem's visit to Baghdad.''
Responding to a question, Necati Utkan stated that Turkey can benefit from the UN High Commission for Refugees, as an expert institution on migration, ''just in case.''
 TURKEY-GREECE - FOREIGN MINISTRY: ''WE EXPECT AN OFFICIAL AND SERIOUS RESPONSE FROM GREECE TO OUR NOTE PROPOSAL''ANKARA, Feb 18 (A.A) - The Foreign Ministry said on Wednesday that Turkey expects a ''serious, official and positive'' response to Turkey's note dated February 12 which called Greece for dialogue regarding solution of the Aegean problems.
Necati Utkan, the Foreign Ministry Spokesman told a weekly press briefing that ''there is no example of a country other than Greece which does not give a positive response to a call for dialogue and insists on not meeting with us.''
Noting that Turkey receives contradictory news from Greece through the media regarding Turkey's call, Utkan stressed that ''the main aim of this initiative was to set up a dialogue. It is not correct that it does not carry a new element.''
Utkan pointed out that the problems which have not been solved in the Aegean creates tension between the two neighbouring states and Turkey desires a comprehensive reconciliation plan, which will be prepared together.''
Utkan added that Turkey's call for peace has also received positive reactions from the world.
 TURKEY-BRITAIN-CYPRUS - HANNAY, THE BRITISH SPECIAL REPRESENTATIVE TO CYPRUS TO VISIT ANKARAANKARA, Feb 18 (A.A) - Sir David Hannay, the British Special Representative to Cyprus will arrive in Ankara on Friday and convey the special message of the British Prime Minister Tony Blair to Prime Minister Mesut Yılmaz, it was reported on Wednesday.
Addressing a weekly press briefing, Necati Utkan, the Foreign Ministry Spokesman said that the Cyprus question and improvement of the Turkish- European Union (EU) relations could be discussed during the Yılmaz-Hannay meeting.
 TURKEY-NARCOTICS - HATAY DIRECTORATE OF SECURITY SEIZES 1.25 TONNES OF PRESSED HASHISH IN GAZIANTEP - EIGHT PEOPLE TAKEN INTO CUSTODYANTAKYA, Feb 18 (A.A) - The Hatay Directorate of Security seized 1.25 tonnes of pressed hashish after an operation on Wednesday in Golhuyuk village in Nurdagi County of southeastern Gaziantep Province.
Narcotics officials during their operation seized 1.25 tonnes of pressed hashish of foreign origin in 708 packages and 140 thousand US dollars in the hidden compartments of a TIR truck belonging to Ramazan Demir.
Ramazan Demir, Arif Yildirim, Osman Ugurlukan, Hasan Sungec, Murat Dabaniuzun, Erdal Yildirim, Nihat Uslu and Murat Ugurlukan were taken into custody in connection with the smuggling.
Officials said the market price of the seized hashish is nearly one trillion liras.
 TURKEY-ICC - ICC SECRETARY GENERAL CATTAUI: - ''TURKEY PLAYS AN IMPORTANT ROLE IN EUROPE'' - ''TURKEY'S PROBLEMS ARE PRIVATIZATION, SOCIAL SECURITY REFORM, RETIREMENT AND INFLATION'' - ''THERE IS NO DOUBT ABOUT THE DYNAMISM OF THE TURKISH ECONOMY''ISTANBUL, Feb 18 (A.A) - Maria Livanos Cattaui, the Secretary General of the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC), said on Wednesday that Turkey plays an important role in Europe.
Responding to the questions of the A.A correspondent regarding the European Union's (EU) attitude towards Turkey's full-membership, Cattaui said that Turkey is a member of the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and of NATO, adding that ''Turkey's importance in Europe is very clear. I hope this will continue and Turkey will be a part of the expanding unions.''
Defining Turkey as an important ICC member country that was completely integrated into the global economy, Cattaui said that the ICC places great importance on the Turkish economy and its strengthening.
Responding to the question ''what are the most important problems facing Turkey?'', Cattaui said that those problems are privatization, social security reform, retirement and inflation.
''We expect that a powerful economic policy will be determined to overcome these problems,'' she said.
Emphasizing that there is no doubt about the dynamism of the Turkish economy, Cattaui said that Turkey is one of the five powerful economies within the OECD.
 TURKEY-CHINA - FOREIGN MINISTER CEM IN SHANGHAISHANGAI, Feb 18 (A.A) - Foreign Minister Ismail Cem, who is currently paying an official visit to China, proceeded from Beijing to Shanghai on Wednesday.
Cem and the accompanying Foreign Ministry delegation will participate the same day in a dinner hosted by Zhou Mingwei, the Shanghai Foreign Office Director.
Ismail Cem will attend a briefing that will be held by the Pudong Economic administration on Thursday morning.
Cem, who will also visit Shanghai Bell firm, will meet with Chen Liangyu, the Deputy Mayor of the Shanghai Municipality on Thursday evening.
Turkey's Consulate in Shanghai will be opened on Thursday and Cem will also participate in the ceremony.
 TURKEY IN BRIEF (2)- FEBRUARY 18, 1998ANKARA - Prime Minister Mesut Yilmaz will lay the foundation of the Third Runway for the Ataturk Airport in a ceremony on Thursday. The construction of the third runway was included in the 1998-investment programme of the Directorate General of State Airports Management (DHMI).
Necdet Menzir, the Minister of Transportation will also attend the ceremony.
OBERHAUSEN - The Dusseldorf Western Thracian Turks' Solidarity Association of the European Western Thracian Turkish Federation (ABTF) opened a photograph exhibition at the Technology Center in Oberhausen, Germany, it was reported on Wednesday.
A total of 53 photographs reflecting the ''the struggle for minority rights since 1923'' will be exhibited until February 27.
ANKARA - Eyup Asik, the Minister of State said on Wednesday that they will start to purchase tobacco by March 15.
ISTANBUL - Ayhan Karahan, the Chairman of the Executive Board of the Laleli Industrialists and Businessmen Association (LASIAD), said on Wednesday that the Iraqi crisis stopped trade in Laleli, the center of the ''shuttle trade''.
ANKARA - Hikmet Cetin, the Speaker of the Parliament received on Wednesday Anatoly Franchuk, the Prime Minister of the Crimean Autonomous Republic and Mustafa Abdulcemil Kirimoglu, the Speaker of the Crimean Tatars Parliament.
Later, Franchuk and Kirimoglu were received by President Suleyman Demirel.
 TURKEY-BULGARIA - DIRECTOR GENERAL OF THE BULGARIAN TURKS CULTURE AND SOLIDARITY ASSOCIATION EFENDIOGLU: ''WE CONDEMN THE CLOSURE OF THE HISTORIC ESKIZARA CENTRAL MOSQUE IN BULGARIA AND TRANSFORMING IT INTO A PLACE OF ENTERTAINMENT''ANKARA, Feb 18 (A.A) - Ibrahim Efendioglu, the Director General of the Bulgarian Turks Culture and Solidarity Association condemned on Wednesday the closure of the historic Eskizara Central Mosque in Bulgaria for praying and transforming it into a place of entertainment.
Addressing a press briefing, Efendioglu said that the relations between Turkey and Bulgaria are developing in every field, adding that the decisions of several local administrators deteriorate these good relations.
''The Bulgarian municipality in Eskizara made a decision to close the Eskizara Mosque, which was constructed in 1408. This decision mocks the religious beliefs of the Turkish Moslem people living in Bulgaria. We hope that the Bulgarian intellectuals who believe in democracy to take action against the closure of this mosque,'' said Efendioglu.
Efendioglu also condemned the Christian propaganda and activities of the Sarıyev priest, who tries to make Moslim Pomaks Christian.
 TURKEY-US - FOREIGN MINISTRY AND US DELEGATION AT THE GAP - DELEGATION MAKES OBSERVATIONS AT THE ATATURK DAMSANLIURFA, Feb 18 (A.A) - An 11-member Foreign Ministry and American delegation arrived at the southeastern Sanliurfa Province on Wednesday to make several contacts and observations on the Southeastern Anatolia Project Region (GAP).
The five-member Foreign Ministry delegation including Ambassador Ugurtan Akinci and Ali Riza Guney and the six-member American delegation including Norman Gelman, Leonard Grosman, Ann Cramer and Jakops Barry were welcomed by the officials from the GAP Regional Development Administration at the Sanliurfa Airport.
The Turkish-American parliamentary delegation firstly visited the Ataturk Dam near Bozova County of Sanliurfa Province.
Necmettin Sasaoglu, an official from the 16th Regional Directorate of the State Water Works (DSI) gave a briefing for the delegation at the Ataturk Dam.
The delegation, which will make observations on the Irrigation Tunnel and the lands opened for irrigation, will also visit the historical and touristic sites in Sanliurfa on Thursday.
 TURKEY-AZERBAIJAN - PRIME MINISTER YILMAZ: ''TOPAL HAD NO CONNECTION WITH ANY MEMBER OF THE ALIVEY FAMILY ''ANKARA, Feb 18 (A.A) - Prime Minister Mesut Yılmaz said on Thursday that Omer Lutfi Topal had no connection with any member of Azeri President Haydar Aliyev's family according to the investigation made regarding this issue.
''It has been concluded that the statements of Omer Lutfi Topal, who mentioned the name of Aliyev to our intelligence services, were not correct, as he tried to hide his real links with other people,'' said Yılmaz.
The Prime Ministry Press Center said in a written statement that Prime Minister Yılmaz thought that it was necessary to announce this issue to the public.
The written statement quoted Yılmaz as saying that ''our intelligence institutions have taken up and investigated once again the Susurluk Report prepared by the Prime Ministry Investigation Council regarding the links of Omer Lutfi Topal in Azerbaijan within the framework of the just concern of the Azeri President Haydar Aliyev. It has been found out that Topal did not have any connection with the Aliyev family.''
The statement also noted that Prime Minister Mesut Yılmaz conveyed his pleasure to the Azeri President Aliyev, because this issue, which made President Aliyev unhappy, has been cleared up.
 TURKEY-US-HUMAN RIGHTS - SHATTUCK, THE US ASSISTANT SECRETARY OF STATE IN MARDIN - MARDIN GOVERNOR GUVEN: ''THE GOVERNMENT'S HUMAN RIGHTS PROJECTS ARE VERY SENSITIVE AND RATIONAL''MARDIN, Feb 18 (A.A) - Fikret Guven, the Governor of Mardin Province said on Wednesday that the projects of the government on the subject of human rights are very sensitive and rational.
John Shattuck, the US Assistant Secretary of State, responsible from human rights, who is currently in the southeastern province of Mardin, visited the Mardin Governor Guven the same day.
Shattuck said that he came to Mardin to see the human right practices in Mardin, because Turkey and US are both allies.
Noting that Prime Minister Mesut Yılmaz had given important messages concerning human rights and the US President Bill Clinton had approved these statements, Shattuck pointed out that ''Mr. Yılmaz had said that the issue of human rights had priority for the government, therefore I have come to see human rights practices here in Turkey.''
Governor Guven said that Turkey will fulfil her responsibilities in the field of human rights, adding that Turkey has not caused the problems in Southeastern Turkey.
''The US is one of the countries which understands the works and activities of our government in human rights. Those terrorists who kill our citizens in the region are not right. The mistakes which are made while struggling with terrorism are not systematic. Sometimes several people make personal mistakes and they are held responsible for these mistakes,'' said Guven.
Shattuck left Mardin the same day.
 TURKEY-ILLEGAL IMMIGRANTS - 159 IRAQIS APPREHENDED WHILE TRYING TO ENTER GREECEEDIRNE, Feb 18 (A.A) - Security officials on Wednesday apprehended 159 Iraqis in Meric, Ipsala and Uzunkopru Counties of Edirne Province in Thrace.
Officials apprehended and took into custody 68 Iraqis in the Subasi region in Meric County, 66 Iraqis in Cakmak village in Uzunkopru County and 25 Iraqis in Karpuzlu region in Ipsala County all of whom were trying to enter Greece illegally.
Meanwhile, Mehmet Dalgic (32), Nurettin Kirez (47) and Mehmet Kivrak (32), the guides of the Iraqis, were also taken into custody.
The security officials also captured six Afghans trying to enter Bulgaria illegally from Edirne's Kemalkoy village near the Bulgarian border.
 TURKEY-TAJIKISTAN - TAJIK DELEGATION'S CONTACTS IN ANKARAANKARA, Feb 18 (A.A) - Seferali Recebov, the Tajik Speaker of the Parliament, who is currently in Turkey as an official guest of Hikmet Cetin, the Speaker of the Parliament, visited on Wednesday with Ahat Andican, the Minister of State and Government Spokesman.
Noting that Tajikistan plays an important role in the region, Andican pointed out that ''Turkey has helped Tajikistan in the latter's transition to independence. A civil war, which lasted for four years, erupted in Tajikistan due to various disagreements, but the concerned sides came together in Moscow last year and set up the National Reconciliation Committee. The committee still continues to work at the moment.''
Recalling that Turkey extended credit to Tajikistan through the Eximbank, Andican said that cultural relations also continue between the two countries.
Andican pointed out that stability in Tajikistan will affect Afghanistan and stability in Afghanistan will have a good effect on Tajikistan and on the other Central Asian countries.
Recebov said that he held productive contacts in Turkey, adding that Turkey helped Tajikistan a lot regarding the establishment of peace.
Prime Minister Mesut Yılmaz also received Recebov the same day.
Yılmaz told Recebov that Turkey attributes great importance to Tajikistan, recalling that the two countries signed important agreements during President Suleyman Demirel's and Tajik President Rahmanov's reciprocal visits.
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