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Anadolu Agency: News in English, 98-09-24
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From: The Anadolu Agency Home Page at <http://www.anadoluajansi.gov.tr/>
24 SEPT 1998
 CEM, THE FOREIGN MINISTER: ''TURKISH-ISRAELI RELATIONS AREN'T ISSUE OF BARGAINING''NEW YORK, Sept 24 (A.A) - Ismail Cem, the Foreign Minister, said on Thursday ''the Turkish-Israeli relations aren't an issue of bargaining.''
Cem, who is currently in New York to participate at the UN General Assembly meetings, told ''Al-Hayat'' and ''Es-Savk Al-Avsat'' newspapers published in the Arab countries, ''Turkey doesn't only try to develop her relations with Israel, but also with the Arabic countries.''
Noting that ''we can't give up one for another one,'' Cem stressed ''our friendship isn't an issue of bargaining.'' Cem emphasized the fact that the relation between Turkey and Israel ''isn't a military pact.''
Stressing that Turkey will continue to have good relations with both sides, Ismail Cem complained about the intentional exaggeration of the Turkish- Israeli relations. ''The relation is exaggerated by the Arabs and several Israeli circles,'' added Cem.
Giving information about his bilateral contacts in New York, Cem said that the use of the Iranian territories by the separatist terrorist PKK organization causes concern.
''Our security problem with Iran has to be absolutely solved,'' said Cem, adding ''it's not possible to say a positive thing about it today.''
Noting that he explained the Cyprus question, the confederation proposal of Rauf Denktas, the President of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) and Turkey's candidacy for the UN Security Council to all the foreign ministers with whom he met, Cem pointed out that generally positive reactions are shown to the candidacy of Turkey and countries such as Albania and Sudan showed a clear support for Turkey.
Referring to the issue of the Greek candidacy for 1999, Cem said that Turkey doesn't extend support to Greece concerning this issue.
Foreign Minister Cem also met with Ivan Ivanov, the new Russian Foreign Minister. The Russian Minister didn't welcome the confederation proposal of the TRNC President Rauf Denktas at his meeting with Cem.
 HEAVY BLOW BY POLICE ON DRUG SMUGGLERS - 752.5 KG OF COCAIN SEIZED IN A BAHAMIAN-FLAGGED SHIP - 14 PEOPLE INCLUDING TWO FOREIGNERS DETAINEDANKARA, Sept 24 (A.A) - The officials from the General Department of Smuggling and the Provincial Directorate of Security in southern Mersin Province seized in an operation on Wednesday a total of 752.5 kg of cocain and detained 14 persons including two foreigners.
Necati Bilican, the General Director of Security, said that they had been informed that the Bahamian-flagged ''Silkeborg'', which had departed from South America, was carrying drugs.
''Then the Turkish, German and British Police started a joint action and began to monitor the ship closely. The ship, which stopped at a seaport in Spain, entered into the Mediterranean Sea. The Turkish Coastal Security boats monitored the Silkeborg with radar. When she arrived at the Mersin Seaport, the officials from the General Department of Smuggling and the Provincial Directorate of Security in southern Mersin Province seized a total of 752.5 kg of cocain hidden in 1,300 packages,'' Bilican explained.
Security officials detained 11 persons including one Chilean in Mersin; two persons including one Italian in Istanbul and one person in Ankara in connection with the drug smuggling.
The drug, which was seized in Mersin, was to be brought to Europe and Russia via Istanbul by a TIR. Police seized a TIR in Istanbul.
Stressing that the cocain, which was seized in a Bahamian-flagged ship, was the greatest amount of drug that has ever been seized in Turkey, the officials said that one gram of cocain was sold for 10-15 million Turkish Liras.
 PRIME MINISTER YILMAZ MEETS WITH SHARIF, THE PAKISTANI PRIME MINISTERNEW YORK, Sept 24 (A.A) - Prime Minister Mesut Yılmaz, who is currently in New York, met with Nawaz Sharif, the Pakistani Prime Minister, it was reported on Thursday.
The two prime ministers discussed bilateral relations, regional and international issues and they reviewed the traditional friendship relations between Turkey and Pakistan.
The Prime Minister is expected to meet with Benjamin Netanyahu, the Israeli Prime Minister on Friday.
Responding to questions of Turkish journalists after his meeting with Sharif, Prime Minister Yılmaz said that five Mafia bosses were captured since they came to power, adding ''in fact the Mafia wants us to resign.''
Prime Minister Yılmaz said that mainly the Afghan problem was taken up during his meeting with Nawaz Sharif, adding that the issue of nuclear tests of Pakistan didn't come onto the agenda.
Meanwhile, foreign investors which addressed the meeting held by the financial institution namely ''Global Securities,'' distinguished the Turkish economy from the economies of other regional countries including Russia and the Asian countries and described the Turkish economy as positive.
Gunes Taner, the Minister of State, informed the foreign investors and administrators of the financial institutions about the potential of the Turkish economy and responded to questions at the second part of the meeting.
 PRESIDENT DEMIREL RECEIVES KUWAITI-TURKISH AND TURKISH-BRITISH PARLIAMENTARY DELEGATIONSANKARA, Sept 24 (A.A) - President Suleyman Demirel received on Wednesday separately the Kuwaiti-Turkish Interparliamentary Friendship Group and Turkish-British Parliamentary Delegation.
The Presidential Press Office said in a written statement that President Demirel told the British delegation that the friendship between Turkey and Britain is very important, adding that the two countries have the will to work together in order to further improve the existing perfect relations. President Demirel pointed out that the interparliamentary contacts carry importance for helping the two countries in understanding each other better.
The statement noted that Ben Chapman, the Chairman of the guest parliamentary delegation said that all the political parties represented at the British Parliament attribute great importance to the friendship between Turkey and Britain. President Demirel also exchanged views with the British delegation concerning bilateral relations and regional and international issues.
President Demirel also exchanged views with A. H. Al-Jamhour, the Chairman of the Turkish-Kuwaiti Parliamentary Friendship Group concerning bilateral relations and regional issues.
 HAMID, THE GOVERNOR OF PUNJAB DUE IN ANKARA ON THURSDAYANKARA, Sept 24 (A.A) - Shahid Hamid, the Governor of Punjab Province of Pakistan, who came to Istanbul upon the invitation of Erol Cakır, the Governor of Istanbul, and who is currently holding contacts in Istanbul, will proceed to Ankara on Thursday, it was reported on Wednesday.
The Pakistani Embassy in Ankara said that Shahid Hamid will be received by President Suleyman Demirel and meet with Burhan Kara, the Minister of State Responsible for Maritime Affairs in Ankara.
The improvement of commercial and economic relations between Turkey and Pakistan and other issues that concern the two countries will be discussed during Hamid's contacts in Ankara.
Hamid, the Governor of Punjab Province of Pakistan will visit Ataturk's Mausoleum in Ankara and later proceed to the western province of Izmir.
 BULGARIAN STATE RADIO AND TELEVISION TO START BROADCASTS IN TURKISHSOFIA, Sept 24 (A.A) - The Bulgarian State Radio and Television will start broadcasting in the minorities' languages at specified hours and days, it was reported on Wednesday.
The Bulgarian Parliament approved the new radio and television law in its session on Wednesday.
In accordance with the new law, which will enter into effect following the ratification of Petar Stoyanov, the President of Bulgaria, the Bulgarian State Radio and Television will start to give place to programmes in the Turkish language during its daily broadcasts including the regions where the Turkish people are living.
The Radio and Television law also includes the privatization of the second TV channel, the ''EFIR-2'' of the Bulgarian State Television (BNT).
 CARGO SHIP RUNS AGROUND IN BOSPHORUSISTANBUL, Sept 24 (A.A) - The Turkish Merve Sea Enterprises' cargo ship ''SENA'', which was carrying scrap iron, ran aground offshore at Bostanci in the Bosphorus on Wednesday.
SENA, which was carrying 900 tonnes of scrap iron from the Constanta Harbour in Romania to the Hereke Seaport, grounded offshore at Bostanci due to a mistake of the personnel.
When Erman Cebi, the captain of the SENA with 15 crew, requested help, the units of the General Directorate of Coastal Security and Ship Rescue started their activities to rescue the ship.
Officials said that the ship was not affecting the traffic in the Straits.
 TRNC PRESIDENT DENKTAS: ''THE EU MEMBERSHIP SHOULD BE SET ASIDE'' - ''FIRSTLY THE SOLUTION OF THE CYPRUS QUESTION SHOULD BE TAKEN AS A BASIS''LEFKOSA, Sept 24 (A.A) - Rauf Denktas, the President of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) said on Wednesday that the membership process in the European Union (EU) should be set aside, adding that the solution of the Cyprus question should be taken as a basis.
''Firstly the Cyprus question has to be solved so that a situation can arise on the island which will permit the representation of the two former partners namely the Turkish Cypriot people and the Greek Cypriot people,'' said Denktas.
Evaluating the news saying that the EU countries of Italy, France and Spain, will ask for a freezing of the EU membership negotiations with the Greek Cypriot side until a political solution is found for the Cyprus question, Denktas pointed out that ''this attitude of the mentioned countries shows that they started to understand the fact that the Turkish and Greek Cypriots live separately upon their own wills and there are two peoples, two separate democracies and two governments on the island.''
Pointing out that the Greek Cypriots and Turkish Cypriots have been living separately for 35 years on the island, Denktas stressed that one of them doesn't have the right to govern the other.
Noting that his confederation proposal is a constructive one aimed at uniting the states of two peoples under one roof, Denktas said that the TRNC is a reality and an agreement which ignores the TRNC can't be made.
 TURKEY CONVEYS HER VIEWS TO THE US ABOUT NORTHERN IRAQNEW YORK, Sept 24 (A.A) - Turkey conveyed her views to the US concerning the new formulation in Northern Iraq, it was reported on Thursday.
Turkey expressed her hesitations and reservations to the US during the meeting held with Martin Indyk, one of the high ranking officials at the US Department of State.
The Turkish side expressed her concern about the agreement reached between Jalal Talabani, the leader of the Patriotic Union for Kurdistan (PUK) and Massoud Barzani, the leader of the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) in Washington, D.C., and said ''it is the Iraqi people who will decide on the future regime in Iraq, including Northern Iraq. It isn't a correct approach to make this decision in Washington, D.C. Everyone should respect the decision that will be taken by the Iraqi people.''
The Turkish side said that the international observors have to watch the elections that will be held in Iraq, noting that the arrangement that will be made in Northern Iraq have to be ''temporary and local''. Turkey stressed that the territorial integrity of Iraq has to be protected and the separatist terrorist organization shouldn't have the freedom to move there.
 GANG BOSS SEDAT SAHIN IMPRISONED IN GERMANY - BERLIN MINISTRY OF JUSTICE: - ''SEDAT SAHIN WAS PUT INTO THE PRISON WHERE THE PERSONS WHO WILL BE DEPORTED ARE IMPRISONED''BERLIN/ANKARA, Sept 24 (A.A) - Sedat Sahin, a gang boss who was captured in the German capital of Berlin late on Wednesday, was put into the prison where the persons who will deported are imprisoned.
The Berlin Ministry of Justice issued a statement saying that Sedat Sahin was being kept in the ''Kopenick Deportation Prison'' in the Kopenick region in Berlin.
The statement said the decision about the deportation of Sedat Sahin will be made according to the initiatives of Turkey.
Meanwhile, the officials from the press office of the Berlin Directorate of Security told the A.A correspondent that they determined that Sedat Sahin wasn't involved in any crime in Berlin.
The press office said that the Berlin police was launching an investigation into Sahin's possible relations with the underground in Berlin where he resided for nearly 8-10 months.
The police officials, who declined to give information about the passport of Sedat Sahin, said that they were inquiring about the passport.
The legal experts pointed out that the deportation of Sahin to Turkey will be difficult if he seeks asylum.
Meanwhile, Necati Bilican, the General Director of the Security, said that Sedat Sahin, the leader of an organized criminal organization, was carrying a fake Italian passport.
Bilican said that a unit including the officials from the National Intelligence Organization (MIT) and the Security went to Germany last week for the capture of Sedat Sahin.
Necati Bilican stressed that the police, in accordance with its combating organized crimes, at first captured Baybasinler, then Kursat Yilmaz, Alaattin Cakici and Sedat Peker, and the German Police detained Sedat Sahin in Berlin yesterday.
Pointing out that Sedat Sahin was wanted with an Interpol international capture decision, Bilican said that the MIT and Security officials determined the contact addresses of Sahin in Germany and informed the German Police on these addresses.
''Sedat Sahin's wife Buket Erener gave birth in Berlin. The German police was informed on this event and on her address. The German Police captured Sahin late on Wednesday in Berlin,'' he mentioned.
 TURKISH PRESS REVIEW (1)These are brief summaries of some of the leading stories in Turkey's press on 24 September 1998. The Anadolu Agency doesn't verify these stories and doesn't vouch for their accuracy.
(Derived from the Newsspot of the Turkish General Directorate of Press and Information.)
YILMAZ MEETS US FINANCE, INVESTMENT LEADERS
SEZGIN IN PORTUGAL
752.5 KG OF COCAINE SEIZED IN MERSIN
KUWAITI-TURKISH FRIENDSHIP GROUP
WORLD BANK OFFICIALS IN TURKEY
SENTENCE FOR ERDOGAN
AUSTRIAN CHIEF OF GENERAL STAFF IN TURKEY
GOVERNOR OF PUNJAB IN ANKARA
 TURKISH PRESS REVIEW (2)These are brief summaries of some of the leading stories in Turkey's press on 24 September 1998. The Anadolu Agency doesn't verify these stories and doesn't vouch for their accuracy.
(Derived from the Newsspot of the Turkish General Directorate of Press and Information.)
TURKISH EXPORTS TO CIS AND EASTERN EUROPE INCREASE
TURKISH BANK BRANCHES ABROAD
SOUTHERN CYPRUS REJECTS YET ANOTHER PROPOSAL
CETIN MEETS WITH IRISH COUNTERPART
NORWEGIAN PARLIAMENTARY DELEGATION VISITS CETIN
SEDAT SAHIN CAUGHT IN BERLIN
Officials from the Police Department in Berlin state that Sahin was caught in a joint operation with the Turkish police. Sahin has been involved in various armed incidents and is being accused of ordering the murder of Mehmet Nafi Capan, once involved in an illegal drug selling operation.
ITALIAN TECHNOLOGY IN DENIZLI AND GAZIANTEP
TURCO-ITALIAN PUBLICATIONS DEAL
CHP DELEGATION TO VISIT GERMANY
CILLER GOES TO US
CARGO VESSEL GOES AGROUND
 TURKISH-BRITISH FRIENDSHIP GROUP IN PARLIAMENT - CETIN, THE PARLIAMENT SPEAKER SAYS THAT THE TWO COUNTRIES COOPERATE IN INTERNATIONAL RELATIONSANKARA, Sept 24 (A.A) - Hikmet Cetin, the Speaker of the Parliament, said on Thursday that Turkey and Britain are in cooperation in international institutions and they pursue similar policies.
Hikmet Cetin, the Speaker of the Parliament, received the same day Ben Chapman, the Chairman of the British-Turkish Interparliamentary Friendship Group and the accompanying parliamentary group.
Noting that the bilateral relations of Turkey and Britain have a history of 400 years, Cetin stated ''there are common values such as democracy, human rights and supremacy of law which bind the two countries. These common values contribute to the formation and development of relations between the countries. Turkey and Britain cooperate in European and international institutions and generally pursue similar policies.''
Ben Chapman said that the existing good relations between Turkey and Britain should be further improved between the Parliaments.
 CAKICI, THE NOTORIOUS MAFIA BOSS SEEKS POLITICAL ASYLUMNICE, Sept 24 (A.A) - Muhittin Yuzuak, the Turkish lawyer of Alaattin Cakıcı, a notorious Mafia boss who was arrested in Nice, France, said that they will make a ''political defense'' at the court hearing on Thursday.
Yuzuak told the A.A correspondent that the crimes attributed to Alaattin Cakıcı and his reason for being wanted are generally concerned with the events that happened before 1980 and they will make a political defense for that.
Meanwhile, Alaattin Cakıcı is seeking political asylum in France.
Frederic Chaubonnau, the French lawyer who was charged by the court to defend Alaattin Cakıcı, told the A.A correspondent that Cakıcı applied on Wednesday to the Nice Governorship for political asylum.
Chaubonnau said that the governorship would send this application to the OFFRA, the Protection Office for Refugees and Stateless Individuals in Paris and his application will be evaluated there.
Cakıcı can be imprisoned for up to two years for entering France with a fake passport.
 TURKEY IN BRIEF - 24 SEPTEMBER 1998ANKARA - The Council of Ministers approved on Thursday the Turkish- Slovakian Joint Economic Commission First Term Meeting protocol.
In accordance with the protocol, the volume of trade between the two countries will be increased to 200 million US dollars as of the end of 1999.
ALIAGA - Australian cyclist Mac. B. Ddlecombe, 52, who started his world tour from Canberra, Australia, and Northern Irish cyclist Derrick Rea, 27, who started his world tour from Northern Ireland, are now touring Turkey after meeting in Istanbul, it was reported on Thursday.
The cyclists said they have pedalled 10 thousand kms up until now during their world tours.
ISTANBUL - The ''Balkan Countries Humboldt Symposium'', which was organized by the Associations of Scholars of the Humboldt Foundation, will start on Friday in Istanbul.
The symposium on ''protection of historical artifacts in the Balkans and archaeological research, science and politics, and environmental problems'' will end on 27 September.
IZMIR - A leading German textile company, the Hugo Boss, will realize production in Izmir, it was reported on Thursday.
The foundation of the facility will be laid on 1 October.
ANKARA - Several concerts will be held on Friday and Saturday in Ankara within the context of the First International Ankara Culture and Art Festival, it was reported on Thursday.
ANKARA - Seamus Pattison, the Speaker of the Irish Parliament, and the accompanying delegation visited on Thursday Yalim Erez, the Minister of Industry and Trade.
The issues of ''economic and commercial relations between Turkey and Ireland, further cooperation fields and the European Union'' were discussed during the meeting.
 TREASURY TO ARRANGE ONE YEAR TERM BOND TENDER INDEXED TO CONSUMER PRICES ON FRIDAYANKARA, Sept 24 (A.A) - The Undersecretariat of the Treasury will arrange on Friday a one-year term bond tender indexed to the Consumer Prices Index (TUFE), it was reported on Thursday.
The Treasury foresees 250-400 trillion Turkish Liras in sales. The issue date for the bonds was specified to be 30 September 1998 while the repayment will be made on 29 September 1999.
In the previous 364-day (one-year) bond tender indexed to the TUFE held on 14 September 1998, the Treasury sold 174 trillion 376 billion TL in bonds while the accepted real yield rate was 30 percent.
Meanwhile, the Treasury will realize the second greatest domestic borrowing repayment of the month on 30 September. The Treasury will realize 457 trillion 394.2 billion TL in domestic borrowing repayments.
 DOMESTIC BORROWING STOCK REACHES 9.4 QUADRILLION TURKISH LIRASANKARA, Sept 24 (A.A) - The Undersecretariat of the Treasury, announced on Thursday that Turkey's domestic borrowing stock reached 9.4 quadrillion Turkish Liras (TL) as of the end of August 1998.
The Treasury issued a written statement saying that the domestic borrowing stock, which was 6 quadrillion 283 trillion 425 billion TL at the end of 1997, increased 49.9 percent to 9 quadrillion 415 trillion 715 billion TL in the January-August 1998 period.
The amounts of domestic borrowing stock between the end of 1997 and 31 August 1998 according to the Treasury statistics are as follows:
. Domestic Borrowing Stock
Months (Billion TL)
Jan 1998 6,637,689
 ETKIN, THE TRNC FOREIGN AND DEFENSE MINISTER: ''GREEK CYPRIOTS CONTINUE TO REJECT PROPOSALS WITHOUT THINKING ABOUT THEM''LEFKOSA, Sept 24 (A.A) - Taner Etkin, the Foreign and Defense Minister of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) said on Thursday that the Greek Cypriot side continues to reject all the proposals put forward with goodwill, without thinking about them.
Addressing the journalists, Etkin said that the Greek Cypriot side immediately rejected the proposal of Rauf Denktas, the TRNC President, without evaluating it, which suggested the establishment of a joint and autonomous commission to discuss the issue of exchange of property between the two sides on the island.
Noting that the Greek Cypriots make a mistake by acting like this, Etkin stated ''we expect that they will evaluate these proposals in time. We, as the Turkish side proposed a goodwilled proposal. This goodwill opens the way for the solution of the Cyprus question and it will end this problem. This is the last chance.''
Etkin said that he will leave for New York together with Rauf Denktas at the end of September and participate in the Foreign Ministers' meeting of the Islamic countries and hold various contacts there.
 PROFILE OF EXPORTS FROM GAP REGION - IN FIRST EIGHT MONTHS, 342.9 MILLION US DOLLARS OF AGRICULTURAL AND ANIMAL PRODUCTS EXPORTEDGAZIANTEP, Sept 24 (A.A) - The exports of agricultural and animal products to 77 countries from the Southeastern Anatolia Project (GAP) region in the first eight months of 1998 decreased 15.9 percent to 342 million 988 thousand US dollars, it was reported on Thursday.
In the same period last year, the region exported 407 million 517 thousand US dollars of agricultural and animal products to 68 countries.
In the January-August 1998 period, Turkey entered into new markets like Ireland, Northern Ireland, Qatar, Palestine, Latvia, Slovenia, Yugoslavia, Ethiopia, Nambia, Senegal, Mexico, Bangladesh, South Korea, Nepal and Pakistan while she lost the South Yemeni, Serbian, Nigerian, Malaysian, Thailand and Canary Islands' markets.
Abdulkadir Cikmaz, the Chairman of the Southeastern Anatolia Exporters' Union, told the A.A correspondent that in the first eight months of the year, they exported 191 million 373 thousand US dollars in textiles; 111 million 81 thousand US dollars in grain-cereals; 29 million 157 thousand US dollars in dried fruits and 11 million 377 thousand US dollars in livestock.
''The majority of the goods were exported to Iraq, Syria and Italy and the Turkish goods in greatest demand were carpets, synthetic thread and flour, '' he mentioned.
''We realized 93.1 million US dollars to Europe in exports; 164.9 million US dollars in exports to the Middle East; 46.5 million US dollars in exports to the Turkish Republics; 11.8 million US dollars in exports to the Commonwealth of Independent States; 5.2 million US dollars to Africa; 10.7 million US dollars to the American continent; 2.7 million US dollars to Asia and 8.1 million US dollars in exports to other countries in the first eight months of 1998,'' Cikmaz added.
 PRESIDENT DENKTAS OF THE TRNC MEETS WITH LEADERS OF POLITICAL PARTIES BEFORE HIS VISIT TO NEW YORKLEFKOSA, Sept 24 (A.A) - President Rauf Denktas of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) met on Thursday with the leaders of the political parties in order to evaluate the latest developments on the island before his visit to New York.
Addressing the journalists, Denktas explained the aim of the meeting as exchanging opinions on the latest developments following the confederation proposal.
Mehmet Ali Talat, the Leader of the Republican Turkish Party (CTP) stressed that the Cyprus process has been deadlocked, adding that the two sides should come together in order to overcome the deadlock.
Prime Minister Dervis Eroglu, Serdar Denktas, the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of State, and Taner Etkin, the Foreign Affairs and Defence Minister, were also in attendance at the meeting.
 STATE MINISTER ANDICAN RECEIVES LEBEDEV, RUSSIAN AMBASSADOR TO TURKEYANKARA, Sept 24 (A.A) - Ahat Andican, the Minister of State Responsible for the Relations with the Turkish Republics in Central Asia, received on Thursday Alexander Lebedev, the new Russian Ambassador to Turkey.
Addressing the meeting, Andican reminded that Turkey attributes great importance to Russia in the field of the economy.
Andican pointed out that they will discuss with Lebedev at the meeting the issues of Turkish businessmen in Russia, the shuttle trade and the economic crisis in Russia.
Describing the sales of the S-300 missiles to the Greek Cypriot side as a significant commercial business for Russia, Alexander Lebedev stressed, ''the mentioned missiles won't cause a political crisis between the two countries. Consultations concerning the missiles are being held on the bilateral and multilateral levels. I will be pleased with the sign of an agreement concerning the sales of missiles with the S-300s to Turkey during my mission period.''
Lebedev stressed that Prime Minister Mesut Yilmaz's visit to Russia in coming months will also be discussed at the meeting. He added that Turkey and Russia are important partners for each other.
 NATO DEFENSE MINISTERS' MEETING - OYMEN, TURKEY'S PERMANENT REPRESENTATIVE TO NATO: ''MINISTERS TO EVALUATE LATEST DEVELOPMENTS IN KOSOVO AND BOSNIA AS WELL AS ALBANIA''VILAMURA, Sept 24 (A.A) - The unofficial meetings of the defense ministers of the NATO member countries started in Vilamura County in Portugual, it was reported on Thursday.
Ismet Sezgin, the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Defense represents Turkey during the meetings.
The Kosovo crisis, Bosnia-Herzegovina and preparations regarding the Washington Summit that will be held in April next year are among the issues that will be on the agenda of the NATO ministers.
If the required compromise could be reached among the ministers, then the necessary official process will be started for making the air operations go into effect.
Turkish sources say that Turkey in principle will participate in every kind of operation that the NATO will hold in the region and that this was told to the alliance authorities.
The ministers of defense will review the atmosphere following the elections in Bosnia and developments related to the NATO forces and the general atmosphere in the Balkans.
Onur Oymen, Turkey's Permanent Representative to NATO, speaking to the A.A correspondent about the meetings said that the ministers will evaluate the recent developments in Albania as well as Kosovo and Bosnia.
Oymen said that expansion of the NATO, new strategic concepts, Russia and her relations with cooperation partners will be discussed. Oymen said that the NATO concluded military preparations to use in Kosovo when necessary, adding that this problem has political and humanitarian dimensions.
Noting that stability in the region was very important, Oymen said ''Turkey, which is the largest NATO country in the region, is a country which has Turkish citizens in the Balkans and a country which follows the developments there. Such meetings are means for Turkey to express her views.''
Recalling that the steps that will be taken by the NATO depended on the developments in the region, Oymen said ''all of us want the problem in Kosovo to attain a peaceful solution and to reach a ceasefire. If this atmosphere is created, then transportation of humanitarian aid, normalization of life, and reaching to peaceful solutions through negotiations will be faciliated. All these are very difficult in an atmosphere of clash. A humanitarian tragedy is expected in the coming winter months if this negative atmosphere is not ended. We do not have much time.''
Responding to questions about the interpretations that NATO lost credit due to Kosovo, Oymen said ''people should be very careful while making such interpretations. What is expected from NATO, doesn't the alliance perform its assignments? The NATO isn't the only organization targeting the preservation of peace. It wouldn't be realistic to wait for everything from the NATO. Protecting the credit of NATO is a joint effort of all the alliance members. The steps we will take should be in harmonization with our commitments in international field. This is a sensitive balance, we should be careful''
Noting that Turkey, from the very begining played a very active role in these studies, Oymen stressed that Ankara showed the same sensitivity to Kosovo to what it had shown for Bosnia.
Apart from Turkey and the Netherlands, the Parliaments of all the NATO member countries approved of NATO's expansion. The candidate countries wait for Ankara's confirmation.
It was reported that the Netherlands will confirm NATO's expansion in the coming days.
Speaking on the issue Oymen said ''Ankara revealed its views related with the issue. Last December, the Foreign Minister signed an agreement foreseeing expansion of the NATO with three new members. Oymen said that signing of the agreements is under authorization of the governments and confirming it, according to our constitutional system, under the responsibility of the Parliament. We can't comment on the decision of the Parliament. However, it is known that this agreement was earlier confirmed by the Parliamentary Foreign and Defense Commissions.''
Oymen said ''what is important under international law is the confirmation of the Parliaments. The agreement can't go into effect before the Parliaments of the 16 member countries approve it. The target is to conclude this process before the Washington Summit.
 BAKU-CEYHAN OIL PIPELINE - PRESIDENT EDUARD SHEVARDNADZE OF GEORGIA: - ''WE WILL SIGN THE AGREEMENT CONCERNING THE MAIN OIL PIPELINE WITH AZERBAIJANI AND TURKISH PRESIDENTS ON 9 OCTOBER''MOSCOW, Sept 24 (A.A) - Eduard Shevardnadze of Georgia said on Thursday that the main oil pipeline that will transport the Azeribaijani oil to the international markets, will be the Baku-Ceyhan route, and they will sign the agreement concerning the main pipeline with the Azerbaijanii and Turkish Presidents on 9 Ostober.
Shevardnadze stressed, ''the route has been determined and won't change in the future. This will be an historical event for both Southern Caucasia and the other countries.''
Pointing out that Georgia becomes a transit country for the transportation of Central Asian and Russian natural gas and oil to the south, Shevardnadze also mentioned the project aimed at reviving the historical Silk Road, and said, ''Georgia is one of the countries taking a part in this realistic project.''
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