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Anadolu Agency: News in English, 00-03-14

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

14 March 2000 Tuesday

[02] TURKEY-PRESS SCAN

These are some of the major headlines and their brief stories in Turkey's press on March 14, 2000. The Anadolu Ajansi does not verify these stories and does not vouch for their occuracy.

HURRIYET (LIBERAL)

INVITATION FOR DINNER IS A GAME
Rauf Denktas, President of Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) responded to the call of Glafcos Clerides, leader of the Greek Cypriot side, who invited him to come and have dinner with the Greek Cypriots. Denktas said, ''this is a game to deceive the world by saying, 'I am inviting but he is not coming.'' Denktas also said, ''I had invited him to TRNC to drink coffee when he was elected as the leader, but he refused by saying 'I have nothing common to speak with you'.''

1.5 BILLION U.S. DOLLARS FROM THE WORLD BANK
The World Bank and Turkey agreed for the structural harmonization credit towards ''economic reform'', worth of 750 million U.S. dollars. The loan will be approved on April 11. Also, the sides agreed in principle for finance sector harmonization loan worth of 750 million U.S. dollars.

MILLIYET (LIBERAL)

GREEN PASSPORT TO BE REMOVED
Interior Minister Sadettin Tantan said a change will be made in Passport Law in order to harmonize with the European Union (EU) standards. Green passport implementation, valid for high level state officials, their wives and children, will be ended. It was reported that increase in number of Turkish citizens having green passport created uneasiness in the EU, and several countries brought visa into the agenda. Also, usage of this passport in illegal affairs put Turkey into a difficult position.

EUROPEAN MODEL IN EDUCATION
As efforts are underway in education to experience European model, bureucratic obstacles create uneasiness. Socrates Program, staged within the body of the European Union (EU), is expected to bring new facilities to the Turkish education system. The program was started to increase European dimensions in education, and to give opportunities to the students and lecturers to work in other countries by facilitating their exchange. Establishment of a National Agency, which will coordinate exchange program in national level, is among the primary targets.

SABAH (LIBERAL)

WAYS OF EXTRADITION FOR ASLITURK
Interior Minister Sadettin Tantan pointed out that security and cooperation agreement will be signed with Britain. Thus, ways will be opened for the extradition of Nurettin Guven, a suspect of drug trafficking, and Gulay Asliturk, former Mayor of Sisli.

FLAG OF ETHIOPIA CREATES UNEASINESS
The flag on the car of Seyoum Mesfin, Ethiopian Foreign Minister, created uneasiness in Ankara. The flag of Ethiopia is composed of green, yellow, and red colors. Members of the terrorist PKK organization same the same colors as symbol. Officials of foreign ministry wrote ''Ethiopia'' near the flag to prevent a misunderstanding.

CUMHURIYET (LEFT)

CHIEF PROSECUTOR SAVAS DEFENDS THAT THE U.S. WANTED CHANGE IN ARTICLE 312
Vural Savas, Chief Prosecutor of Supreme Court, said, ''amendment of Article 312 of Turkish Penal Code (TCK) is dangerous for the regime.'' Speaking about the punishment sentenced on Necmettin Erbakan, the banned leader of the closed Welfare Party (RP), Savas said a 4-5 months punishment is insufficient to such an incitement. Savas said initiatives to amend Article 312 was the plan of foreign countries, mainly the U.S.

KARAGECILI ARRESTED
Eyup Karagecili, the deputy leader of People's Democracy Party (HADEP), was arrested because of a speech he made in southeastern Batman province. There was an arrest in absentia decision against Karagecili given by State Security Court (DGM) earlier.

RADIKAL (LEFT)

ERBAKAN IS HAPPY
Necmettin Erbakan, former leader of the banned Welfare Party (RP), was pleased after the statement of President Suleyman Demirel that he would launch initiatives to amend Article 312. Erbakan said, ''this problem will be solved, nobody can say yes to Article 312.''

EXPORTATION PLEASES IN AUTOMOTIVE
As automotive sector made a good start to this year, the companies increased their exportation in the first two months of this year by 211 percent.

According to the estimations made by Automotive Industry Association data, total vehicle exportation in Turkey reached 18,452 in the first two months of this year. Total vehicle exportation was 5,929 in the same period of last year.

YENIBINYIL (LIBERAL)

AVALANCE FALLS ON ERZURUM
Two people died after being trapped under avalanche in Cat township in eastern Erzurum province. Those people were on their way from Cayirtepe vilage to Sarikasik village. The villagers found the dead bodies of the two under the avalance.

FIRST AGREEMENT WITH ETHIOPIA
Seyum Mesfin, Ethiopian Foreign Minister, arrived in Ankara as the official guest of Foreign Minister Ismail Cem. Cem and Mesfin signed two documents, one of them was a cooperation protocol, and the other one was health agreement. Mesfin started his contacts by visiting Anitkabir, and later met with Cem and was received by Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit.

TURKIYE (RIGHT)

EXPORTATION MOBILIZATION
Turkey is directed toward the Far East, Middle East, Balkans, and Caucasus markets which it neglected for a long time due to the intensity in domestic policy. The target is to sell goods more than before, and to increase the share in investments.

The ministers and businessmen pay visits to the countries which were neglected. Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit's scheduled visit to India is important within this framework.

WE WILL TREMBLE IN EID AL-ADHA
Turkey will be under the effect of cold and rainy weather as of the first day of Eid al-Adha. The cold and rainy weather comes from the Balkans and Centeral Mediterranean. Temperatures will drop below normal temperatures of the season.

ZAMAN (CONSERVATIVE)

CALL FROM HUMAN RIGHTS ORGANIZATIONS
Human rights organizations also took part in discussions about Article 312. The discussions started after Necmettin Erbakan was sentenced to one year imprisonment terms. The organizations said all articles restricting thought and expression should be changed.

EU PREPARES TO REMOVE CONCESSIONS ON AGRICULTURE GIVEN TO TURKEY
Failure to fulfil the concessions made to the European Union (EU) on agricultural products may cause Turkey's two billion U.S. dollars exportation to run a risk. Turkey did not fulfil the concessions in order to protect local producers.

The EU is getting prepared to lift all the concessions toward the Turkish agriculture products as tariff quotas given within the scope of agriculture agreement were not allowed to be used.

[03] TRNC PRESIDENT DENKTAS: - ''I HAVE SUCCESSFULLY FULFILLED MY DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES''

LEFKOSA - Rauf Denktas, the President of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC), said on Monday that he has successfully fulfilled his duties and responsibilities for five years.

Denktas received the delegation of National Resurrection Party (UDP) which decided to support himself in the elections.

''If I am re-elected as the president, I will continue to defend our case. My target is to reach a peace which will not bring my nation to earlier days, without missing the peace opportunities and without yielding to some artificial formations just because it is peace,'' Denktas said.

When recalled the words of Glafcos Clerides, the leader of Greek Cypriot side, who invited him to have a meal, Denktas said that he had invited Clerides to have a coffee when he was elected and that he told him that this would be help them give a message to the nation.

Denktas added that but Clerides refused him by saying that it was not necessary to meet him since they did not have anything in common to discuss.

Clerides forced the United Nations (U.N.) Secretary General for face-to- face talks, and that they met in the house of Gustave Feissel, the U.N. Secretary General's Deputy Special Envoy to Cyprus, which was in Lefkosa; Denktas said.

Denktas noted that as they shook hands, Clerides told him that he would talk everything if Denktas supported their application to the European Union (EU) and otherwise, he would not talk anything.

Clerides knew that he would not support the application, Denktas stated.

Denktas stressed that they later met in New York and Glion and that Clerides told him that the sovereignty belonged to states and that they would not discuss the sovereignty and the exchange of assets.

Clerides also told him that the allocation of a base to Greece and the armament were the business of the state, Denktas said.

Denktas noted that to this end, they decided to arrange talks between two states.

''Now, whether Clerides made this call as the 'president of Cyprus' or as the 'leader of the Greek Cypriot side' carries importance,'' Denktas added.

[04] AFTERSHOCKS CONTINUE

ISTANBUL - Aftershocks continue to shake Marmara Region and Duzce while an earthquake shook Gemlik township of Bursa province on Monday.

Officials of the Bogazici University Kandilli Observatory Center and Seismology Institute said that an aftershock measuring 3.2 on the Richter scale shook Marmara Sea at 9.37 p.m. and that another aftershock measuring 3.0 on the Richter scale jolted Kocaeli province at 10.00 p.m.

An earthquake measuring 2.8 on the Richter scale shook Gemlik township of Bursa province at 6.10 p.m., the officials added.

[05] TANTAN, INTERIOR MINISTER, DENIES NEWS REPORTS THAT HIS MEETING WITH BRITISH HOME SECRETARY TURNED INTO A DIPLOMATIC SCANDAL

LONDON - Interior Minister Sadettin Tantan on Monday denied news reports that his meeting with Jack Straw, British Home Secretary, turned into a diplomatic scandal. Tantan is in London for a three day official visit.

Tantan said the allegations that he was told that he could ''stay in the room only for ten minutes'' were not correct.

Tantan said the comment related with the issue, was appeared as a note given by Straw's secretary was misunderstood.

Tantan said Straw's secretary said Home Secretary was preparing a speech he would make in the Parliament, and added that he would meet with them within ten minutes. Tantan said the translator misunderstood it and translated it as ''you can stay in the room only for ten minutes.''

Tantan said this mistake could be understood as the meeting lasted for half an hour. Tantan said they were welcomed with hospitality, and noted that, ''we did not experience anything that will make us sorry.''

[06] TANTAN, MINISTER OF INTERIOR: ''AGREEMENT PLANNED TO BE SIGNED IN STRUGGLE AGAINST TERRORISM AND DRUG TRAFFICKING IS VERY IMPORTANT''

LONDON - Sadettin Tantan, Minister of Interior, said on Tuesday that ''Security Cooperation Agreement'' which would be signed with Britain, was very important in struggle against terrorism and drug trafficking.

Tantan is currently on a three-day official visit to Britain as the guest of Jack Straw, British Home Secretary. Tantan spoke to journalists following his first day contacts.

Tantan defined the first day contacts as ''very productive'', and pointed out that Security and Cooperation Agreement has come to the stage of signature due to the determined attitude of the government.

Pointing out that successful joint efforts of Turkey with several other countries in struggle against crimes such as drug trafficking, terrorism, and human smuggling formed a good example. Tantan said, ''crossborder crimes can not be prevented with the unilateral efforts of the countries. There are situations which make Britain uneasy. Success of Turkey in struggle against drug and terrorism provided a confidence atmosphere. Such agreements will increase mutual confidence and cooperation.''

When a journalist recalled the information that Turkish mafia was reponsible for the 80 percent of the heroin which entered to Britain, and asked if his British counterpart complaint about it, Tantan said, ''successful struggle of Turkish security teams on drug trafficking is known. Our efforts in this respect are known. We are already launching initiatives with Britain. It is known that Turkish police and customs, and British police and customs have common works.''

Interior Minister Tantan said terrorist PKK was discussed during his meeting with Jack Straw, British Home Secretary, and noted that there were formations in the world which illegally support terrorist activities.''

Tantan said terrorists and drug smugglers violate the rules of the countries they are in and create great uneasness in these countries, adding that, ''similarly terrorists in this country bother British people. A legal framework should be formed to take a concrete step, and to obtain a result.''

Tantan said the last stage was very important at this point, adding that British Home Secretary briefed him about a legal preparation regarding struggle against terrorism inside and outside. Tantan said this legal preparation is expected to be approved in British Parliament in the coming autumn.

Responding a question, Tantan said he conveyed the issue of Nurettin Guven, former Chairman of Malatyaspor, who was wanted with the red bulletin of Interpol on charges of drug trafficking, to Jack Straw, and that he noted down the issue.

[07] GURTUNA, ISTANBUL MAYOR, LEAVES FOR FRANCE

ISTANBUL - Ali Mufit Gurtuna, Istanbul Mayor, left for France on Tuesday to participate in ''World Mayors Summit'', which will take place in Paris between March 16 and 17.

Speaking before his departure from Istanbul's Ataturk Airport, Gurtuna said mayors of 35 cities will attend the summit from the various countries of the world.

Gurtuna said he will hold contacts to improve cooperation facilities between Istanbul and Paris municipalities.

Gurtuna and an accompanying delegation are expected to return to Turkey on March 17.

[08] SALE OF IMPORTED AUTOMOBILES - A TOTAL OF 18,373 IMPORTED AUTOMOBILES SOLD IN JANUARY-FEBRUARY PERIOD

ANKARA - A total of 18,373 imported automobiles were sold in January- February period of this year.

According to the calculations made from the data of Imported Automobiles Turkey Agents Association, Volkswagen was leading the selling list of the imported cars. A total of 4,339 Volkswagen cars were sold.

Opel became the second. A total of 3,466 of them were sold, and Ford became the third with 2,059 cars that were sold.

Lada is the fourth, and Renault is the fifth.

A total of 14,980 cars were imported from the European Union (EU) and European Free Trade Area (EFTA) countries, and 2, 210 cars were imported from Eastern Block countries.

A total of 1,183 of the 18,373 imported cars, which were sold in the first two months of the year, have come from the Far East countries.

Maserati and Saab were leading the list of the imported cars which were sold the less in January-February period. One from each were sold.

MC became the second, and Porsche is the third.

[09] GAMA, FOREIGN MINISTER OF PORTUGAL, EU TERM PRESIDENT, IN TURKEY

ANKARA - Jaime Gama, Foreign Minister of Portugal, Term President of the European Union (EU), arrived in Turkey on Tuesday within the framework of an official visit.

President Suleyman Demirel and Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit are expected to receive Gama. Portugal's Foreign Minister will also meet with Foreign Minister Ismail Cem.

Gama is expected to depart Turkey in the evening hours after wrapping up his contacts.

[10] BRUGES COURT DECIDES TO RELEASE FEHRIYE ERDAL ON BAIL - ERDAL WILL BE TRIED WITHOUT DETENTION

BRUSSELS - Belgian Bruges Court Tuesday decided to release Fehriye Erdal on bail to be tried without detention.

The Court also decided to release Musa Asaoglu, and Hasan Saz, members of illegal DHKP-C, together with Erdal, one of the suspects of murder of Ozdemir Sabanci.

Yet, the Court gave Bruges Prosecutorship time till 18:00 local time to oppose the decision.

Foreigners police opposed to her release as Fehriye Erdal sought for asylum from Belgium.

[11] PRESIDENT DEMIREL RECEIVES ETHIOPIAN FM

ANKARA - President Suleyman Demirel received on Tuesday Seyum Mesfin, the Ethiopian Foreign Minister.

Demirel said that they found the opportunity to improve the relations between Turkey and Ethiopia.

Mesfin's visit will contribute to the improvement of the relations, Demirel added.

Mesfin said that they want to improve the relations in every field.

Later, the meeting was closed to the press.

[12] BRUGES COURT DECIDES TO RELEASE FEHRIYE ERDAL ON BAIL (2)

BRUSSELS - Belgian Bruges Court decided to release Fehriye Erdal, Musa Asaoglu and Hasan Saz, the members of the illegal Revolutionary Peoples' Salvation Party-Front (DHKP-C) organization on bail to be tried without detention on Tuesday.

Erdal is one of the suspects of the murder of Ozdemir Sabancı, a famous Turkish businessman.

Yet, the Court gave Bruges Prosecutorship time till 18:00 local time to oppose the decision. If the Prosecutorship rejects the court verdict, the detention of the suspects will continue and the prosecutorship will submit the file to the court of appeals within 15 days.

Meanwhile the Foreigners Police connected to the Belgian Ministry of Interior, opposed the release of Erdal and reminded that Erdal asked Belgium for political asylum. The prosecutorship said that the detention of Erdal should continue as long as this request is not responded. If Erdal is released, the Foreigners' teams are expected to arrest her again.

The verdict of Bruges court foresees the suspects to pay a bail worth of 100,000 francs (nearly 1,5 billion Turkish liras), to determine an address in Belgium, to visit officials any time they are called and to help the justice.

Bruges court took the same decision last month, but the prosecutorship opposed this decision for the three suspects. Gent Court of Appeals considered this opposition as appropriate.

[13] BRUGES COURT DECIDES TO RELEASE FEHRIYE ERDAL ON BAIL (3) - BELGIAN PROSECUTORS TO HOLD A SPECIAL EVALUATION MEETING

BRUSSELS - The Bruges and Gent prosecutors said on Tuesday that they will hold a special evaluation meeting after the Belgian Bruges Court decided to release on bail Fehriye Erdal, Musa Asaoglu and Kaya Saz, the members of illegal extereme leftist terrorist DHKP-C organization.

Johan Delmulle, the Gent Chief Prosecutor, said that the possibility of the release of three terrorists is very weak, and they will reject the verdict of the court.

After the Bruges Prosecutor's Office and Gent Prosecutor's Office evaluate the verdict, two offices are expected to oppose the verdict before 6.00 p.m. today and to carry the case to Gent Supreme Court.

In this case, the Gent Court will take up the rejection of the prosecutor's office and will give a decision within 15 days.

The judicial sources said that the prosecutor's office has sufficient opportunities to oppose the release of especially Fehriye Erdal to be tried without detention.

The judicial sources recall that Turkey had requested the extradition of Erdal, one of the assailants of the Sabanci assassination, and that the Bruges and Gent courts evaluated this request as rightful and valid.

The lawyers of the suspect will appeal these verdicts in April.

However, the officials said that Erdal's release to be tried without detention is impossible before the judicial decision about Erdal's extradition is given.

Meanwhile, the Belgian Foreigners Police is expected to arrest the suspect once more if she is released to be tried without detention.

The Foreigners Police said that Erdal sought asylum from Belgium and that it is against Erdal's release before a decision for this asylum application is given.

If the asylum application is rejected, Erdal can be extradited to Turkey, the Foreigners Police added.

Erdal, one of the suspects of the assassination of Ozdemir Sabanci, Chairman of Sabanci Holding Automotive Group, was arrested in Belgium on September 26, 1999. Haluk Gorgun, Director General of Toyota-Sa and his secretary Nilgun Hasefe were also killed in the assassination on January 9, 1996.

Musa Asaoglu, and Hasan Saz, members of the illegal DHKP-C organization, who were arrested in a luxurious apartment in Knokke coat city together with Erdal, will be tried on charges of carrying weapons, using false passport and involving in terrorist attacks.

Turkey had conveyed its request for the extradition of Erdal to Belgian Foreign Ministry on November 3, 1999. Bruges Court found the request as rightful and valid.

Later, Erdal's lawyers had appealed the Bruges Court's decision in the Gent Court of Appeal.

However, the Gent Court of Appeal did not approve the request of Erdal's lawyers.

Then, the lawyers had applied to the Belgian Supreme Court as the last remedy.

[14] BRUGES COURT DECIDES TO RELEASE FEHRIYE ERDAL ON BAIL (4) - PROSECUTORSHIP OBJECTS THE VERDICT

BRUSSELS - The Bruges Prosecutorship of Belgium objected the verdict of Bruges Court which released on bail Fehriye Erdal, Musa Asaoglu and Kaya Saz, the members of the terrorist organization DHKP-C, (the Revolutionary Peoples' Salvation Party-Front) and said they will appeal the verdict on Tuesday.

Johan Delmulle, the Chief Prosecutor of Gent Court said that they objected the court verdict regarding the three suspects and they will apply to the Gent Court of Appeals on March 28.

The objection to the verdict by the prosecutorship causes the continuation of imprisonment of the suspects.

If Gent Court of Appeals, which is a higher court, does not take into consideration the objection of the prosecutorship and approves today's verdict on March 28, the three suspects will be released to be tried without detention. If not, their imprisonment will continue.

Bruges Court earlier decided to try Hasan Ekinci, another member of the terrorist organization DHKP-C without detention and the prosecutorship also objected this decision and applied to Gent Court of Appeals. When the court rejected the objection of the prosecutorship, Ekinci was released on March 6, 2000.
Bruges Court decided on February 15 to release on bail Erdal, Asaoglu and Saz to be tried without detention, but the prosecutorship also objected to that. Gent Court of Appeals accepted the objection of the prosecutorship on February 29 and the imprisonment of the suspects continued.

[15] HANNAY, BRITISH SPECIAL ENVOY TO CYPRUS, SAYS THOSE WHO ARE INCLUDED IN CYPRUS QUESTION FROM OUTSIDE CANNOT SOLVE QUESTION

LEFKOSA - Sir David Hannay, the British Special Envoy to Cyprus, said on Tuesday that those who are included in the Cyprus question from outside, cannot solve the question.

Following his contacts on the island, Hannay told a press conference that nobody can impose any solutions.

The United Nations (U.N.) efforts will continue and that they will contribute to these efforts, Hannay noted.

Hannay stated that the sides outside Cyprus cannot impose any solutions and that only the two sides on Cyprus can decide about a possible solution.

He believes that they can record serious developments in the following few months, Hannay stressed.

Hannay emphasized that Britain will continue its efforts on Cyprus and that the third-round Cyprus proximity talks which will start on March 23, will be launched with hopes of reaching a lasting solution on the island.

Since the U.N. Secretary General warned them not to make statements regarding the contents of efforts for a solution, he will not make such statements, Hannay said.

Hannay noted that it is a critical time for Cyprus and that Cyprus question is a very long process.

They sometimes felt hopeless and sometimes came to a deadlock in this long process, Hannay stated.

Hannay stressed that he believes that good opportunities for a solution were seized in the Cyprus proximity talk process which was launched by the U.N. in the last five or six months.

The process should be accelerated, and the gear should be changed in the third-round Cyprus proximity talks which will be held in New York, Hannay emphasized.

Hannay said that this is obligatory for the searches of solution and that the U.N. should encourage two leaders on Cyprus to overcome the problem.

Overcoming the differences in the point of views during the previous two rounds, and the will of the leaders for searches of a solution, are encouraging; Hannay noted.

Hannay stated that the solution should be in the benefit of two sides and that the question concerns both Turkey and Greece.

He believes that a more realistic and constructive path in which the tactics are left aside, should be pursued, Hannay said.

Hannay added that it is time for pursuing such a path.

The rapproachment between Turkey and Greece positively affects the efforts exerted to find a solution to Cyprus problem, said Hannay and added that it also has a positive influence on Cyprus negotiations. He believes that this rapproachment will further improve after the elections in Greece, he said.

The international society is also included in the efforts of finding a solution to Cyprus problem, Hannay said and showed the visits of U.N. Secretary General's Special Envoy for Cyprus Alvaro De Soto and U.S. Special Representative for Cyprus Alfred Moses to Cyprus as an example to that. They will come to the island again before May 23, Hannay added.

Sir David Hannay said that these efforts are more comprehensive compared to those in the past.

The dimension of the European Union (EU) has also come out regarding the Cyprus question, said Hannay and added that the EU launches positive efforts for the result.

Everybody's efforts and strategy are same, said Hannay and pointed out that Turkish Cypriots and Greek Cypriots also want to join the EU which accepted Turkey's candidacy. Greece is already a member of the EU, he said and stressed that all the concerned sides want to act in the same direction.

''EU membership after the solution, will be beneficial for both sides in Cyprus,'' said Hannay.

Responding to a question, Hannay said that the two leaders are included in the process and he can't say that they are unserious. Very productive results were taken at the end of the proximity talks and they requested the sides to exert more efforts, said Hannay.

He had very beneficial contacts in both sides, but he can't say anything about the content of these contacts, Hannay said and added that he will visit Ankara in March and Athens after the elections in Greece.

When a Turkish journalist asked him about visa application of Britain against TRNC citizens, Hannay said that the visa is not a political, but a practical application. He does not think that it will be abolished as many Turkish Cypriots take refuge in Britain and the economic dimension of that gives damage to the country.

Having a chat with Greek Cypriot journalists after the press briefing, Hannay said that Turkey has a long way towards EU membership. Turkey has to take radical decisions to determine both its geopolitical position and criteria in the region, he added responding to a question.

Hannay, who had earlier met with Greek Cypriot party officials, will leave the island today.

A.A


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