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Anadolu Agency: News in English, 99-12-12

Anadolu Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Anadolu Agency Home Page at <http://www.anadoluajansi.gov.tr/>


[01] AA News

12 December 1999 Sunday

[02] TURKEY-PRESS SCAN

These are some of the major headlines and their brief stories in Turkey's press on December 12, 1999. The Anadolu Ajansi does not verify these stories and does not vouch for their occuracy.

HURRIYET (LIBERAL)

HISTORICAL PHOTOGRAPH
The European Union accepted a Moslem country as candidate state for the first time in its history. Turkey took her place in traditional family photograph of the EU. Addressing a press conference in Helsinki, Ecevit said, ''the EU thinks that it could take years to Turkey to provide full membership conditions. But I believe that we could reach these targets in a short period of time with Turkish society's dynamism and its loyalty to democracy. Of course, Turkey and the EU should fulfil their responsibilities with good-will to reach this target.''

FRIENDSHIP SAPLING TO ECEVIT FROM SIMITIS
Greek Prime Minister Costas Simitis sent an olive sapling to Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit as a symbol of friendship between Turkey and Greece. Sources said that Ecevit, who took part in the family photograph and later attended the working lunch within the framework of the Helsinki Summit, had a little surprise at the airport. Sources said the Greek Ambassador to Helsinki brought an olive sapling to Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit upon the instructions of Greek Prime Minister Costas Simitis.

MILLIYET (LIBERAL)

DEMIREL: ''WE SHOULD WAIT FOR ECHR'S DECISION FOR OCALAN''
President Suleyman Demirel said that Turkey should wait for the European Court of Human Rights' (ECHR) decision for the appeal of Abdullah Ocalan, the head of terrorist organization PKK.

BRITISH PRIME MINISTER BLAIR'S MESSAGE
British Prime Minister Tony Blair expressed profound satisfaction over seeing Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit among them. Blair said, ''the formal recognition of Turkey as a candidate is a big, big step forward, and I'm delighted that we have made that progress. It is important for Europe, for Turkey and for the stability and security of our part of the world,'' Blair told reporters. When asked about the capital punishment given to Abdullah Ocalan, the head of terrorist organization PKK, Blair emphasized that Turkey was obliged to comply with the rules like the other candidate countries on the issue of human rights. Blair also added that terrorist organization's bloody actions in Turkey which claimed thousands of lives, could not be ignored.

SABAH (LIBERAL)

PRESIDENT DENKTAS OF THE TRNC: ''I AM DISAPPOINTED''
President Rauf Denktas of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) said on Saturday, ''the European Union (EU) has taken a wrong decision because of Greek Cypriot blackmailing. I am not angry with anyone, but I am deeply disappointed following the EU's decision.'' He noted, ''our confederation proposal takes into consideration the fact that there are two separate nations, two democracies, and two separate administrations. If insistence on the allegation that there is only one Cyprus, only one government, and only one democracy, then it means that you want the 36-year division on the island to continue. The full membership of the Greek Cypriot administration in the name of 'Cyprus,' will shoulder the heavy responsibility of dividing the island permanently.''

CUMHURIYET (LEFT)

HISTORICAL LETTER FROM HELSINKI TO ANKARA
Prime Minister Paavo Lipponen of Finland, the Term President of the European Union (EU), sent a letter to Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit through Javier Solana, the High Representative of the EU's Foreign Policy and Joint Defense. In his letter, Lipponen said, ''today, the EU has set out on a new course in its relations with the Republic of Turkey. I am very pleased to inform you officially on our unanimous decision to confer Turkey the status of candidate State, on the same footing as any other candidate.''

RADIKAL (LEFT)

THRILLING 25 HOURS
It is the story of hope, disappointment, tension and happy ending. Fourteen members of the EU saught every opportunity to persuade Greece. This very complicated situation was overcome by the letter of Finnish Premier Lipponen. Here is the intense diplomacy traffic: In the very early hours of Friday, critical negotiations started. EU members were putting pressure on Greece. Athens, which gave up its draft, insisted on Cyprus and International Court of Justice in The Hague. An ''unofficial'' document which did not name Turkey as ''candidate'' reached Ankara on Friday morning. And the following document included the sentence saying that 'disputes would be brought to The Hague at the end of 2003.'' Pessimism started. Ismail Cem started diplomacy on the phone, and asked his European counterparts to send the final document, not the drafts. The EU Council declaration was faxed to Cem. The new document confirmed that Turkey was accepted as a candidate without any precondition as other candidates. This was pleasing. Prime Minister called the ministers for a meeting. State Minister and Government Spokesman Sukru Sina Gurel said, ''let's reject it.'' The Greek side leaked the document to press to prevent the changes. While the atmosphere was getting tensed State Minister for Human Rights Mehmet Ali Irtemcelik said, ''this document is a great victory.'' Cem supported Irtemcelik. President Suleyman Demirel, who was closely following the developments, talked to Ecevit on the phone. According to Demirel, the document could be accepted in principle as it could be changed through negotiations. German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder said the letter signed by Lipponen would be submitted to Ankara personally. Ecevit said, ''we accepted it if the content of the letters is like this.'' Meanwhile, French President Jacques Chirac phoned Demirel. The letter submitted to Ecevit by Javier Solana, solved the problem. Solana said, ''we are happy so you should be happy too.''

TURKIYE (RIGHT)

CEM: ''COPENHAGEN IS NOT THE ONLY CRITERION''
Ismail Cem, the Foreign Minister, said that the issue of minority rights was not included in the Amsterdam Agreement, the basic agreement of the European Union (EU), adding that Turkey cannot be coerced to this end. Cem pointed out that Helsinki's controversial 2004 article, determined how the sides, all members, and candidates will solve their own border disputes.Recalling that the problems will be solved through negotiations, and that problems will be brought to the International Court of Justice in The Hague if they can not be solved, Cem noted, ''let us not regard Turkey as the side avoiding from the court and legislation. We want to discuss all issues through consultations. So, it is not right to explain this resolution of Helsinki as against Turkey. In fact, this is a method Turkey desires.''

DEATH TOLL INCREASES TO 815
The Prime Ministry Crisis Management Center stated that a total of 815 people were killed while 4,948 others were injured in the wake of 7.2- magnitude earthquake which devastated Bolu province on surroundings on November 12.

ZAMAN (CONSERVATIVE)

ECEVIT: ''WE HAVE HOMEWORKS TO DO TO BE A FULL MEMBER OF THE EU''
Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit said that Turkey has some homeworks to do to become a full member of the European Union (EU). Ecevit noted, ''now, our real target is the full membership to the EU. We have some homeworks to do to become a full member of the EU. First of all, we have some serious deficiencies in the field of the human rights. If we can succeed in overcoming these deficiencies, and in reducing the chronical high inflation, our transition into full membership will be accelerated. Our EU candidacy cannot be prevented any more.''

CAKICI TO BE BROUGHT TO TURKEY NEXT WEEK
Alaattin Cakici, notorious mafia boss, will be brought to Turkey next week. French Justice Ministry approved extradition of Cakici who was arrested in France.

[03] PRESIDENT DEMIREL EVALUATES HELSINKI DECISIONS (1)

ANKARA, Dec 12 (A.A) - President Suleyman Demirel said early on Sunday that the legal process about the case of Abdullah Ocalan, the head of the terrorist organization, had not concluded yet.

''Of course, our domestic law is very important. If we are together with Europe and we signed many agreements with Europe, on my personal opinion, we have to take into consideration the decisions of the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) in accordance with those agreements. We have to wait,'' he said.

Addressing the private television Turkish-CNN, Demirel answered the questions about Helsinki decisions.

Responding to the question ''when he was asked whether or not Abdullah Ocalan would be executed, the Finnish Premier, in his press conference, said, 'this is not the case of an individual.' However, he went on saying, 'the reform started by Mr. Demirel and Mr. Ecevit, will continue. Turkey will comply with the Eropean Union (EU) laws.' There is not a death sentence there. What do you think about this statement?'', Demirel said, ''they have always approached the issue in this way. They do not put forward a different attitude. I mean Europe abolished execution. As a European country, Turkey did not sign the Protocol No:6. Turkey does not consider that she is binded to this. However, what could Lipponen say? It is EU member and it abolished death sentence. With this respect, he couldn't say that Turkey could do whatever she wants. I mean he gave a quite political answer.''

When asked what his opinion was about the issue, Demirel said, ''it is a very sensitive issue. The legal process has not concluded yet. What I mean with legal process is that first of all, it is the issue of the Supreme Court's correction decision.''

''Now, will we be European? Let's talk about this. If we will be European, fulfilling this poorly will be improper. If we won't be European, we don't have to upset us and other people. I mean who forces us for being European? We are forcing us for being European. Because, this is a 150-year issue,'' he said.

''Didn't Great Leader said that Turkey's future was in Europe. Didn't Great Ataturk shake hands with European states, which made Turkey wretched, after fighted against them? Why? Because he foresaw Turkey's future in Europe for being a modern European state,'' he said.

''If Turkey is a leading world state in her region on the eve of the 21st century, didn't she achieved this as a result of the modern state founded by Great Ataturk? Then, it will bring many benefits for Turkey if she competes with Europe in the same course,'' Demirel stated.

Noting that Turkey accepted many of Europe's basic legal principles, Demirel said that the basic legal principles like Civil Code and Penal Code were adapted from Europe.

''Thus we have to act like a European. Of course, our domestic law is very important. If we are together with Europe and we signed many agreements with Europe, on my personal opinion, we have to take into consideration the decisions of the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR)in accordance with those agreements. We have to wait. You can say 'no, we don't listen to anybody, we do what we want.' However, if we want to continue along with the world, then it is not possible to hope something from the world when it suits our interests, and to refuse them when it does not accord with our plans.''

[04] PRESIDENT DEMIREL EVALUATES HELSINKI DECISIONS (2)

ANKARA, Dec 12 (A.A) - President Suleyman Demirel said early on Sunday, ''the European Union's (EU) decision is not a decision which imposes fixed conditions on Turkey. It is a decision which makes Turkey a candidate state to the Union.''

Addressing a television programme on the CNN-Turk Channel, Demirel said, ''announcement of Turkey's EU candidacy is, of course, a very important decision. In Luxembourg just one year ago, Turkey was not found eligible to become a candidate state. If we were disappointed with the Luxembourg decision, today we should be pleased with the Helsinki decision. Turkey was exposed to an international injustice at Luxembourg summit. In Helsinki, this unfairness was removed.''

Recalling that Turkey had been defending the western values for years, Demirel noted, ''during the Cold War period when the Soviet Union was threatening the West, Turkey served as a stronghold defending democracy, superiority of law and freedoms. Despite this fact, Turkey was not considered as eligible to become an EU candidate in 1997 while countries which have remained behind the iron curtain for years, were accepted as candidate states. Such a discrimination created profound sorrow in Turkey. In her relations with Europe, Turkey is more European, democratic, developed and improved country than these countries.''

Demirel continued, ''French President Jacques Chirac told me on the phone, 'Turkey is declared as candidate without any condition.'

This is a very pleasing development. The European Union's (EU) decision is not a decision which imposes fixed conditions on Turkey. It is a decision which makes Turkey a candidate state to the Union.

When we objected to the EU's decision taken at Luxembourg summit, we said, 'you are seeking the conditions required for full membership, not for candidacy. We need a certain period of time to prepare Turkey from candidacy to the full membership.''

''There are some restrictions. These are not conditions. One of them is regarded with the Cyprus question. It says, 'the European Council underlines that a political settlement will facilitate the accession of Cyprus to the European Union.' Because there is a candidate state on their list called as Cyprus. I told them in numerous occasions that it was a mistake to ignore the northern Cyprus and to consider the southern Cyprus as the whole island. There is a de facto situation. Which Cyprus?'' Demirel stressed.

When asked, ''If the EU says at the end of 2004, 'you could not resolve the problem we would accept southern Cyprus', what will Turkey do?'', Demirel said, ''as I said before, the EU says, 'the European Council underlines that a political settlement will facilitate the accession of Cyprus to the European Union.' If the Cyprus question cannot be resolved, this will not be a precondition in EU Council's full membership decision. If a reconciliation cannot be reached, the EU will not say, 'you could not reach a reconciliation, so we are rejecting you.' The Helsinki final declaration says, 'If no settlement has been reached by the completion of accession in negotiations, the Council's decision on accession will be made without the above being a precondition. In this case, the European Council will take account of all relevant factors.' These are political and diplomatic documents. We should not bring to a simple conclusion, we have to take into consideration what the sentences really meant to say.''

[05] TURAN, DEPUTY OF MHP, LOSES HIS LIFE IN A TRAFFIC ACCIDENT

BALIKESIR, Dec 12 (A.A) - Sitki Turan, the Canakkale Deputy of the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP), was killed in a traffic accident on

Sunday.

Turan's automobile collided with a lorry on the Balikesir-Edremit highway at about 09:00 local time.

Metin Demir, the adviser of Turan, also lost his life in the accident.

Security officials have launched a full investigation into the accident

[06] PRESIDENT DEMIREL EVALUATES HELSINKI DECISIONS (3)

ANKARA, Dec 12 (A.A) - President Suleyman Demirel said early on Sunday that the sentences in the Helsinki decisions concerning the solution of border disputes were not conditions.

''Turkey is a member of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) and a member of the United Nations (U.N.). As a member of these two organizations, Turkey actually committed herself to solve a border dispute with her neighbours peacefully if there are such disputes,'' he said.

Addressing the private television Turkish-CNN, Demirel answered the questions about Helsinki decisions.

Responding a the question, Demirel said, ''Turkey was called EU candidate in the Helsinki decisions which Turkey accepted after long negotiations.''

''This earlier said that 'we don't accept your application for candidacy since your economic, political and social situation is not proper.' Now, it says 'you are a candidate. You figure out the reason for your candidacy,'' he said.

Noting that the Turkish diplomacy and politics had expended great efforts since 1997 to achieve this result in Helsinki, Demirel said they met with the world leaders in every international platform and explained the situation.

''We told them that -it would be more beneficial if the Turkish public opinion is informed about the issue- 'you would offend Turkey if you once again refuse its candidacy; Europe can't be without Turkey and Turkey can't be without Europe; there are common interests in the cooperation between Turkey and Europe; the number of people defending unity of Turkey and Europe would decrease if Turkey's candidacy is not accepted also this time, '' he said.

''Turkey's situation became more important following the collapse of the Soviet Union. Turkey who was a 'stronghold' yesterday became a 'bridge' today. Today, Turkey is a bridge between Europe, Caucasia and the Middle East. If you want to go to these regions, you have to pass via Turkey,'' he said.

Demirel recalled that the Helsinki decision said the Council of Europe called on candidate countries to expend every kind of effort to solve border disputes, and referred to the principle for peaceful solution of disputes within the framework of the U.N. Charter.

''Turkey is a member of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) and a member of the U.N. As being a member of these two organizations, Turkey actually committed herself to solve peacefully a border dispute with her neighbours if there is such a dispute,'' he said.

''Now Turkey has to take a decision -Aegean dispute, other problems, border disputes whatever it is-. Aren't we is the side that announces that those problems should be solved peacefully? Does it mean a committment if Turkey says she wants to solve them through peaceful means? For what reason you are among these civilized nations if you can't solve problems peacefully? Peace in the world is tried to be protected. What do we want? Do we want to live being isolated from the world or do we want to be together with the world? In today's world, any nation especially a civilized nation which isolated itself from the world can't achieve successes,'' he said.

''And it goes on saying that the European Council stresses the principle of peaceful settlement of disputes in accordance with the United Nations Charter, and urges candidate states to make every effort to resolve any outstanding border disputes, and other relevant issues. Failing this they should, within a reasonable time, bring the dispute to the International Court of Justice,'' he said.

''Of course, we say here 'ooh, my God.' when the International Court of Justice is referred. It is a different issue whether we are rightful or not. However it says another thing: 'the European Council will rewiev the situation relating to such disputes in particular concerning the repercussions on the accession process, at the latest by the end of 2004.' There is not a person saying 'you either solve or not solve by 2004. If you can't solve, I implement a sanction.' The letter sent to Prime Minister Ecevit by the Finnish Premier is very interesting. There are not conditions. It says that these disputes would be discussed again if those disputes couldn't be solved till 2004 or those disputes were not brought to The Hague. Nobody forces anybody. Thus I think this decision should be perceived very well. It has a very important meaning,'' he said.

[07] PRESIDENT DEMIREL EVALUATES HELSINKI DECISIONS (4)

ANKARA, Dec 12 (A.A) - President Suleyman Demirel said early on Sunday, ''there was a detente between Turkey and Greece before the European Union's (EU) Helsinki summit. If Greece had obstructed Turkey's candidacy once again, this rapprochement would be destroyed.''

Addressing a television programme on the CNN-Turk Channel, Demirel said, ''this positive atmophere should be maintained between Turkey and Greece. It will lead better relations between two countries.

We should trust each other to resolve disputes. We should resolve all problems under the umbrella of mutual confidence.''

As he was evaluating Helsinki decision, Demirel explained developments in a long period from Common Market Agreement to Turkey's EU candidacy.

Demirel said, ''it is a contradiction that Turkey which was an agricultural country was accepted as eligible to become a partner of Europe in 1963 while an industrialized Turkey's candidacy was rejected in 1997. The EU case also has political factors in addition to economical factors. Turkey was considered as European in 1856. Turkey has many friends in Europe, but at the same time there are a number of circles against Turkey.''

When asked, ''Europe's understanding of human rights and civil democracy, respect for minorities coerce Turkey to take several measures and to improve her policies. Is Turkey ready to achieve these?'' Demirel said, ''If we say, 'Turkey is not ready' than when will be she ready? Turkey has recorded significant progress. This is a struggle to become lofty under the leadership of Great Founder Ataturk. Europe cannot exclude Turkey by saying, 'we do not accept you as a full member.' Europe has several commitments and responsibilities towards Turkey. Turkey will definitely be a full member of the EU one day.''

Noting that some circles in Turkey have questions about what would be Turkey's benefits from the EU membership, Demirel noted, ''Spain's gross national product per capita was 4 thousand U.S. dollars when she became a member of the EU. It increased up to 16 thousand U.S. dollars. We will further improve Turkey as a result of the EU membership.''

When asked whether Greece will veto the EU's financial aid to Turkey, Demirel said, ''there were rumours and conjectures claiming that Greece would obstruct announcement of Turkey's candidacy. We told our friends in Europe that in case of such an obstruction, detente between Turkey and Greece would be destroyed. Please, do not consider my words as a threat. Earthquake disasters have notably brought Turkey and Greece closer. Foreign ministers of both countries eased this rapprochement. Press and business circles also made a considerable contirubition to this end. This rapprochement does not mean solution of long-standing problems just in one day. But it is a significant development. If Greece had obstructed Turkey's candidacy once again, this rapprochement would be destroyed. This positive atmophere should be maintained between Turkey and Greece. It will lead better relations between two countries. We should trust each other to resolve disputes. We should resolve all problems under the umbrella of mutual confidence.''

[08] PRESIDENT DEMIREL EVALUATES HELSINKI DECISIONS (5)

ANKARA, Dec 12 (A.A) - President Suleyman Demirel said early on Sunday that Turkey's most important problem was the limits of the freedoms of religion and conscience.

Addressing a television programme on the CNN-Turk Channel, Demirel responded to questions about Helsinki decisions.

When he was reminded that ''the European Union (EU) requested Turkey in 1997 to accept, to tolerate, and to express clearly the cultural identity of Kurds. It also put forward a condition saying, 'however, Kurds should not defend separatism and terrorism,'' Demirel said, ''Turkey is a uniter state. There is minority in Turkey with the definition of the Lausanne Treaty. Everyone living in Turkey is equal citizens of the Republic of Turkey. No one cannot be discriminated because of their race, religious beliefs and ethnic background. In Turkey, there is an intermingled society living in unity. It is not beneficial for anyone to destroy the unity in Turkey. After announcement of Turkey's EU candidacy, we should try to harmonize with Europe. We should adapt our judicial system to the system in Europe.''

''In the beginning when a united, democratic, and rich Europe was targeted, there were no Copenhagen criteria. Today, every country from the Eastern Europe to the Balkans wants to become a member of the EU.

The EU says, 'full membership to the EU is dependent on democracy, supremacy of law, protection of human rights and minorites.' So, Turkey will further improve her democracy, strengthen supremacy of law, show more respect to human rights, and develop presence of market economy. As for minorities -according to my opinion there is no minority in Turkey except for the minorities defined by the Lausanne Treaty - we will make their institutions functional,'' Demirel said.

When reminded of allegations claiming that the non-existence of a civil authority over the army created concerns, Demirel said, ''is this a Constitutional Article if this was written there. Can't these be discussed? You wrote this in this way but this is not like that.''

When asked, ''it means that the army in Turkey is under civil control, and the army does not play a great role in political life through the National Security Council. Is it true?'', Demirel said, ''yes. Actually, this is the reality. I mean we held general elections which could not be objected by anyone. A total of 21 political parties participated in the general elections. Tens of thousands of people were elected in local elections throughout Turkey. These allegations are remains of the past. Turkey has a free parliament today. We do not have a serious deficiency in the basic criteria. No one can claim that a fair and clear elections were not held in Turkey. Moreover, there is an independent jurisdiction in Turkey. Who can interfere with the independent jurisdiction?''

Noting that there were freedoms in Turkey, Demirel continued, ''but Turkey has a condition. The Constitution of the Republic of Turkey defines the Republic as a democratic and secular state of law.

The Constitution also underlines the unseparable integrity of the state with its nation and country.''

When asked whether there was a necessity for a revision and a liberalization in Articles of the Constitution concerning basic rights and freedoms, Demirel said, ''basic rights and freedoms are dependent upon the Universal Declaration of Human Rihgts and European Human Rights Convention. There cannot be any other basic rights and freedoms except these.''

Demirel added, ''the most important problem in Turkey is the limits of the freedoms of religion and conscience. There are several different opinions stemming from the separation of the state from the religion. I think Turkey can and should overcome these problems.''

[09] U.S. PRESIDENT CLINTON SENDS A LETTER OF CONGRATULATION TO PRIME MINISTER ECEVIT

ANKARA, Dec 12 (A.A) - U.S. President Bill Clinton sent a letter of congratulation to Prime Minister Ecevit on December 10 regarding formal announcement of Turkey's candidacy to the European Union (EU) at Helsinki summit.

In his letter, Clinton expressed profound satisfaction over the announcement of Turkey's candidacy.

Clinton noted he believed that Turkey's future was in Europe, adding that Turkey would play a vital role in shaping the 21st century.

[10] HELSINKI SUMMIT REVIEW MEETING ENDS - PREMIER ECEVIT: ''NOBODY SHOULD BE IN DOUBT AND WORRY ABOUT THE CYPRUS ISSUE''

ANKARA, Dec 12 (A.A) - Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit said on Sunday that nobody should be in doubt and worry about the Cyprus issue, adding, ''our position toward the Cyprus issue is clear. A change in our position is out of question.''

Prime Minister Ecevit, State Minister Mehmet Ali Irtemcelik for Human Rights, State Minister and Government Spokesman Sukru Sina Gurel and Foreign Minister Ismail Cem held a Helsinki Summit review meeting at the Prime Ministry residence.

Speaking to reporters following the meeting, Ecevit said they reviewed the Helsinki Summit.

When asked whether he talked to Rauf Denktas, the President of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) on the phone, Ecevit said, ''I will phone Mr. Denktas up. I couldn't phone yet as it is too early in the morning there.''

Stressing that nobody should be in doubt and worry about the Cyprus issue, Ecevit said, ''I mentioned it several times in Helsinki and explained it in every opportunity. Our position toward the Cyprus issue is clear. A change in our position is out of question.''

Responding to another question, Ecevit said he would meet with President Suleyman Demirel at 19:00 local time the same day, and they would review the Helsinki Summit.

[11] PRESIDENT ALIYEV OF AZERBAIJAN: - ''I SUPPORT TURKEY'S EU CANDIDACY''

BAKU, Dec 12 (A.A) - President Haydar Aliyev of Azerbaijan said on Sunday that he supported Turkey's European Union (EU) candidacy .

Aliyev said that obstacles raised in front of Turkey on the path to the EU membership, ended at Helsinki Summit.

Describing announcement of Turkey's candidacy to the EU as a pleasing development, Aliyev said that he had phoned President Suleyman Demirel, and congratulated him.

[12] PRESIDENT DEMIREL ATTENDS CEREMONY WHERE KEYS TO PREFABRICATED HUTS WERE HANDED OVER TO QUAKE SURVIVORS

BOLU, Dec 12 (A.A) - President Suleyman Demirel attended on Sunday a ceremony in Bolu where keys to prefabricated huts were handed over to quake survivors.

Addressing the ceremony, Demirel said that the state was expending all kinds of efforts not to have quake survivors suffer difficult winter conditions.

Demirel said, ''Turkey suffered two massive earthquake disasters on August 17 and November 12. As we were trying to heal the wounds of the first quake, a second one hit Bolu province. In this holy month of Ramadan, we are praying God to save us from another grave disaster.

Residents in quake-stricken areas lost their relatives, beloved ones, and their homes. Whole Turkish nation share their pain. People from 86 countries rushed to help us. The whole world shared our grief.''

President Demirel stressed that the Public Works and Settlement Ministry had fulfilled its commitment by completing the prefabricated huts.

He stressed that Turkey has the enough power to overcome the aftermath of the quake disasters.

Demirel implored God's strength to those who are grieving for their beloved ones, and God's mercy to those who lost their lives.

He also visited quake survivors in Kaynasli and Duzce which were devastated in the second quake disaster.

[13] SOCCER-DRAW FOR FINALS OF EURO 2000 - TURKEY TO PLAY WITH BELGIUM, SWEDEN AND ITALY IN SAME GROUP

ANKARA, Dec 12 (A.A) - Turkey will play with Belgium, Sweden and Italy in the same group in the 2000 European championship finals to be played in Belgium and the Netherlands from June 10 to July 2.

Draw for the finals of 2000 European championship finals is as follows:

Group A

1. Germany

2. Romania

3. Portugal

4. Britain

Grup B

1. Belgium

2. Sweden

3. TURKEY
4. Italy

Group C

1. Spain

2. Norway

3. Yugoslavia

4. Slovenia

Group D

1. Netherlands

2. Czech Republic

3. France

4. Denmark

Fixtures:

Saturday, June 10

Group B

Belgium v Sweden Brussels

Sunday, June 11

Group B

TURKEY v Italy Arnhem, Netherlands

Group D

Netherlands v Czech Republic Amsterdam

France v Denmark Bruges, Belgium

Monday, June 12

Group A

Germany v Romania Liege, Belgium

Portugal v Britain Eindhoven, Netherlands

Tuesday, June 13

Group C

Spain v Norway Rotherdam, Netherlands

Yugoslavia v Slovenia Charleroi, Belgium

Wednesday, June 14

Group B

Italy v Belgium Brussels

Thursday, June 15

Group B

Sweden v TURKEY Eindhoven

Friday, June 16

Group D

Czech Republic v France Bruges

Denmark v Netherlands Rotterdam

Saturday, June 17

Group A

Romania v Portugal Arnhem

Britain v Germany Charleroi

Sunday, June 18

Group C

Denmark v Spain Amsterdam

Norway v Yugoslavia Liege

Monday, June 19

Group B

TURKEY v Belgium Brussels

Italy v Sweden Eindhoven

Tuesday, June 20

Group A

Portugal v Germany Rotterdam

Britain v Romania Charleroi

Wednesday, June 21

Group C

Slovenia v Norway Arnhem

Yugoslavia v Spain Bruges

Group D

France v Netherlands Amsterdam

Denmark v Czech Republic Liege

Saturday, June 24

Quarter-finals

Runner-up B v Winner A Amsterdam

Winner B v Runner-up A Brussels

Sunday, June 25

Quarter-finals

Runner-up C v Winner D Rotterdam

Winner C v Runner-up D Bruges

Wednesday, June 28

Semifinal Brussels

Thursday, June 29

Semifinal Amsterdam

Sunday, July 2

Final Rotterdam

[14] Anadolu Ajansı


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