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Anadolu Agency: News in English, 01-02-05

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

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

Anadolu Agency

ANADOLU AGENCY

NEWS

05 FEBRUARY

2001 Monday


CONTENTS

  • [01] TURKEY-PRESS SCAN

  • [01] TURKEY-PRESS SCAN

    These are some of the major headlines and their brief stories in Turkey's press on February 5, 2000. The Anadolu Agency does not verify these stories and does not vouch for their accuracy.

    HURRIYET (LIBERAL)

    REACTION OF FOUR FRENCH INTELLECTUALS TO FRENCH PARLIAMENT
    Four French intellectuals reacted to the French parliament which adopted the law on so-called genocide on Armenians. Alexandre Adler, who is a journalist said that ''the voting in the parliament was dreadful, 20 percent of those who participated in the voting didn't know anything about foreign politics.'' Olivier Roy, an expert on Islam said that the law does not have any connection with the strategic interests of France, adding it was adopted because of the fear of losing votes. Jacques Attali, a writer said in his part that Turkey will become a centre of attraction in ten years. Dominique Moisi, a scientist said that the Armenian lobbies are very strong, adding that the French surrendered to a very strong lobby.

    TEN HELICOPTERS TO BE PURCHASED FOR TURKISH POLICE
    Ten helicopters will be purchased for Turkish police. The helicopters will be able to read the plates of cars, take the picture of human beings and to lock itself to any vehicle in order to follow it. The MD 600N type helicopters will be given to Turkey in six months.

    MILLIYET (LIBERAL)

    EXPORTER BECOMES IMPORTER
    The businessmen who penetrated into the Chinese market to export, started to import products. The Istanbul Chamber of Commerce (ITO) said that the Turkish businessmen who go to China to sell products, purchase products and return to Turkey. The ITO gave the message that the only solution is tourism.

    DEATH FAST BARGAIN HAS NOT ENDED
    Efforts continue to persuade the death fasting inmates in Sincan F type prison to end their protest. The prison administration tries to persuade the inmates by some interesting methods. The sub-commission which was set up by the Parliamentary Human Rights Commission to examine the F type prisons, visited the Sincan F type prison the previous day. Tayfun Sagiroglu, the prosecutor in the prison, said that giving the inmates the right to play football and to go to the library if they end their protests was promised.

    SABAH (LIBERAL)

    ORAL, MINISTER OF FINANCE SAYS THERE AREN'T ANY OTHER ALTERNATIVE
    ECONOMIC PROGRAMS
    Sumer Oral, the minister of finance, said sixteen economic programs had failed to achieve any success in Turkey till today adding that there wasn't another way other than reaching success in the implementation of the current economic program. Noting that the first issue on the agenda of Turkey would be economy till 2002, Oral said a deviation from the economic program wouldn't be beneficial for the people who suffer from some financial straints.

    CONSTRUCTION OF PERMENANT DWELLINGS COMPLETED IN BOLU
    The construction of one thousand 458 permenant houses constructed by the Public Works and Settlement Ministry in quake stricken Bolu province is completed. The officials said the delivery of the dwellings to the quake survivors would start as soon as possible. The quake survivors were pleased with the architecture of the dwellings and with the landscape in the place where the houses were constructed.

    CUMHURIYET (LEFT)

    NO VOTES FOR FP IF ERBAKAN TAKES CONTROL IN PARTY
    The survey conducted by the SESAR Company on people giving their votes to the Virtue Party (FP) had quite surprising outcomes. The survey had contained detailed questions about the recent developments in the FP and eighty percent of the participants said they wouldn't give their votes to FP if the ban on Necmettin Erbakan, the former leader of closed Prosperity Party (RP) was lifted and became the leader of the FP. The participants said they supported the leadership of Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the former mayor of Istanbul who is banned from political activities.

    PRIME MINISTRY HIGHER INSPECTION BOARD SAYS ETI BOR CAN'T BE SOLD
    The Prime Ministry Higher Inspection Board opposed to the privatization of the Eti Bor Corp. in its first report regarding the issue. The experts of the board said benefits could be derived from the boron ore by the operation of the Eti company by the state. The experts added the boron ore was one of the most profitable sources of country.

    RADIKAL (LEFT)

    MOST CRITICAL SUMMIT TO BE HELD TODAY
    The coalition leaders will discuss critical issues today like the change in by-law of the parliament, the closure case of the Virtue Party (FP), the commitments given to IMF which couldn't be fulfilled and the National Programme which divided the government. If the Virtue Party (FP) is closed, a parliamentary election can be held. The coalition parties are searching for a constitutional amendment that will save the Virtue Party (FP) from closure in order to remove an election possibility and that won't be rejected.

    THERE IS POLITICAL WILL IN ANKARA
    Liljegren, the Swedish Ambassador to Turkey said regarding the full membership of Turkey to the European Union (EU) that the government has the necessary resolution about it. He added that there is no delay in Turkey's submission its National Programme for the Adoption of Acquis (NPAA) to the EU, as claimed so by some press organs.

    TURKIYE (RIGHT)

    TENSE WAITING
    The parliament will continue to discuss the bill on amendment to parliamentary by-laws on Wednesday. The ruling parties are determined to amend the by-laws while the opposition parties are determined to obstruct it. Parliament Speaker Omer Izgi will meet with the group acting leaders of the political parties in the parliament to find an intersection point until Wednesday.

    TUZMEN DUE IN SWITZERLAND
    Foreign Trade Undersecretary Kursad Tuzmen will go to Switzerland today. Tuzmen will pay a visit to Switzerland between February 5 and 7 upon the invitation of David Syz, the Swiss State Secretary for Economy. Tuzmen and Syz will sign a memorandum of understanding on high-level commercial and economic consultations.

    ZAMAN (CONSERVATIVE)

    SIHANLIOGLU DOSSIER BROADENED
    The investigation which was launched by the Ankara Republican Chief Prosecutor's Office into the death of Fevzi Sihanlioglu, a deputy of the True Path Party (DYP), was broadened. After legal procedures regarding Cahit Tekelioglu and Mehmet Kundakci, the two deputies of the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP), had been launched, the other deputies will also be listened either as suspects or witnesses.

    THEY HAVE NO EVIDENCE TO CLOSE
    Recai Kutan, the leader of the Virtue Party (FP), said that there is not any sufficient evidence to close their party if the legal norms operate. The FP had its general administration board meeting on Sunday. Kutan explained his views about the closure case of FP which is before the Constitutional Court in the meeting.

    -TURKEY INSISTS ON NEED OF CONTINUATION OF MIDDLE EAST PEACE PROCESS
    TEL AVIV - While the result of the election in Israel which will be held on Tuesday is expected as it will have effect on the future of the Middle East peace process, Turkey insists on the need of continuation of the peace process whatever the result will be.

    Turkey thinks that the peace process should continue and whoever will be the winner of the election, the results achieved so far from the process should not be lost.

    Diplomatic observers who say that Turkey has some ''hesitations'' about Ariel Sharon, the far-right leader, add that the attitude of Sharon which didn't give any hope for the peace till today, can change if he comes to power.

    Sources said that Turkish-Israeli relations shouldn't be affected from this election, noting that ''there won't be change on the basis of the relations, but there can be rises and falls in the profile of these relations.''

    Foreign Minister Ismail Cem had recently phone calls with Palestinian President Yasser Arafat and Israeli Foreign Minister Shlomo Ben Ami in relation to the Palestinian-Israeli peace process. Speaking in a weekly press briefing, Foreign Ministry Deputy Spokesman Huseyin Dirioz said last Friday that Turkey was one of the countries which strongly supported the Middle East peace process. ''We wish the continuation of peace efforts without any interruption after the elections that will be held in Israel. In this respect we will continue to do the things that should be done by us, '' he had said,

    The Manavgat brook water project which is expected to be finalized between Turkey and Israel in May does not seem to be affected by the elections in Israel.

    Diplomatic sources said that the Israeli government gave its ''political decision'' regarding the purchase of water from Turkey and the issue is expected to be bargained economically. Sources don't think that Sharon will return back from this decision.

    Sharon, the Likud leader is expected to improve his negative image caused by his performance when he was the defense minister in the past.

    Political observers said that his image will have negative impact on the peace process, adding that if the right-winger leader is resolved to continue

    the peace process, he has to improve his image.

    The same sources said that some radical elements can want to benefit from this negative effect of Sharon on the peace process, and they think that this shouldn't be allowed for regional peace.

    -MANY PEOPLE VISIT GENOCIDE MONUMENT AND MUSEUM IN IGDIR
    IGDIR - Many people visit Genocide Monument and Museum in eastern Igdir province after the adoption of the law on so-called genocide on Armenians by the French parliament, the officials said on Monday.

    The Genocide Monument and the Museum, which was opened on February 5, 1999 for the memory of the 80 thousand Turkish people who were massacred by the Armenians in eastern Igdir province and the region between 1915-1920, have been visited by many people recently.

    The officials of the museum said there was an increase in the number of the people visiting the Genocide Museum and the Monument after the French parliament adopted the law on so-called genocide on Armenians.

    There are visitors coming even from Nahcevan, said officials.

    -JUSTICE MINISTER TURK LEAVES FOR GERMANY
    -TURK:''EXISTENCE OF CAPITAL PUNISHMENT IN OUR LAWS IS
    AN OBSTABLE WE FACE IN ISSUE OF EXTRADITION OF CRIMINALS''
    ISTANBUL - Justice Minister Hikmet Sami Turk said on Monday that ''the existence of the capital punishment in our laws is an obstacle Turkey faces in the issue of extradition of the criminals.''

    Turk left for Germany as the official guest of German Justice Minister Hertha Daeubler Gmelin.

    Prior to his departure, Turk told reporters that the relations with Germany, where almost three million Turkish people live, carry utmost importance.

    Turk said that making the judicial relations stronger, making judicial assistance, the extradition of criminals, and the transfer of inmates are the main issues which will come to the agenda during his visit.

    He will visit a prison in Berlin to see the problems of the Turkish inmates during his contacts in Germany, Turk noted.

    Turk stated that he will meet with the Deputy Speaker of the Federal Assembly, and the members of the Human Rights and Humanitarian Aid Commission and the Legal Commission.

    He will visit the Federal Court in Karlsrube, Turk said, adding that he will give a conference on law and judicial reforms in Turkey.

    Responding to questions of reporters, Turk said that the judicial relations with Germany are good but that there are some problems in the extradition of criminals.

    Turk noted that the problems occur since Germany considers the criminals who are requested to be extradited to Turkey, as political convicts.

    Upon a question on capital punishment, Turk said that the capital punishment has not been executed in Turkey since 1984.

    Turk continued, ''the law no 4616 saying the punishment of the crimes committed until April 23, 1999 will not be executed, has been passed. Of course, there will be some exceptions in the implementation. The capital punishment is not carried out in Turkey. But, the existence of capital punishment in our laws is an obstacle we face in the extradition of criminals.''

    ''To this end, we have to calmly evaluate the abolition of capital punishment in different aspects. We should not only debate whether or not this punishment is modern or deterring but also we should evaluate this issue in respect of difficulty in prosecution of the criminals,'' Turk added.

    Responding to a question on the investigation launched by Ankara State Security Court (DGM) Republican Prosecutor Talat Salk, Turk said, ''what has been launched is not an investigation but an examination. As it is known, the Justice Ministry inspectors are authorized to control whether or not the procedures followed by the judges and republican prosecutors comply with the regulations, by-laws, laws and circulars. An examination launched within this framework is in question.''

    Turk went on saying, ''the correspondence with the mentioned international organizations had to be made through the Justice Ministry and the Foreign Ministry. To this end, an investigation and interrogation have been launched. But, there is not any intervention in the core of the investigation. This investigation is an important part of the struggle against corruption in Turkey. But, all the procedures should be carried out in accordance with the rules. Everybody is obliged to fulfil his mission in line with the rules.''

    When asked a question about the inmate who burnt himself in F type prison, Turk said, ''unfortunately, an inmate attempted to burn himself by setting ablaze the newspapers. He is hospitalized. This is an incident which shows how the teenagers who are misleaded and forced to do wrong things.''

    Turk noted that he expects the hunger strikes and death fasts to be ended in the possible shortest time.

    ''It is not possible to gain anything like this. The hunger strikes which were started to close these prisons, did not serve the purpose,'' Turk said.

    Responding to a question on the law on so-called genocide on Armenians, Turk said, ''we have to explain the realities to the world. We have only defended ourselves so far. We have to explain how the incidents started, what kind of oppression the Armenians had made, what kind of a genocide they had committed, and how the imperialism has made the people who used to live in peace, become enemies of each other.''

    Upon a question, Turk said that the Chairman of Istanbul Bar had carried out an intensive campaign against the F type prisons.

    Turk continued, ''this campaign was based on unjust reasons. But, this campaign was so effective that the efforts to end the death fasts and hunger strikes were not influential although the Chairman of Istanbul Bar participated in the persuasion process. The bars have to carry out efforts in the direction of their goals like all the other public professional organizations.''

    Turk added, ''under Article 135 of the Constitution, the courts put an end to the duties of the concerned organs of the professional organizations which carry out efforts which are against their foundation targets. But, the Istanbul Bar will defend itself. The independent court is the organ which will give the final decision.''

    -OPERATION ''WHITE ENERGY''
    -HUSEYIN COGALAN TAKEN UNDER CUSTODY
    ANKARA, Feb 5 (A.A) - Huseyin Cogalan, a former director in Energy and Natural Resources Ministry was taken into custody in southern Antalya province on Monday within the scope of the operation called ''white energy.''

    Cogalan was brought to Ankara to be interrogated upon the instruction of Talat Salk, Ankara State Security Court (DGM) Prosecutor who carries out the operation.

    Meanwhile the interrogation of Yavuz Gursoy, former Deputy Director General of the same ministry also continues.

    -ONLY 3,040 FOREIGN RESEARCHERS INTERESTED IN
    OTTOMAN ARCHIVES IN 79 YEARS
    ISTANBUL - Only 3,040 foreign researchers were interested in Ottoman archieves in 79 years.

    Officials of the Ottoman Archieves Department of the General Directorate of Archives told A.A correspondent on Monday that the Ottoman archives are comprised of almost 150 million documents and that 50 million of the documents have been classified.

    The officials said that efforts to open the Ottoman archives were launched in 1932.

    There are documents about the foundation and rapid development eras of the Ottoman Empire and the documents belonging to the interior and foreign affairs and the police organization in the last years of the empire, the officials noted.

    The officials said that the documents about the Armenian incidents between 1890-1895 and 1914-1922 were classified in 1980s.

    The statistics about the documents which are related to the years between 1921 and 2000 are very interesting, the officials noted.

    The officials said that 11,897 Turkish and 3,040 foreign researchers have referred to the archieves in the mentioned years.

    A total of 192 researchers, including 180 Turkish researchers, have referred to the documents about the Armenians in these years, the officials stated.

    The officials said that four U.S, four Iranian, one Bulgarian, one British and one Azerbaijani researcher have examined the documents related with the Armenians.

    The statistics indicate that 610 researchers have referred to the Ottoman archives while 151 researchers from France, which adopted the law on so- called genocide on the Armenians, have examined the Ottoman archieves.

    That there were not any French researchers among those who applied to benefit from the archives related with the Armenians drew the attention.

    Thirteen researchers from Russia, 52 from Greece, 37 from Italy, 28 from Canada and seven from Belgium have referred to Ottoman archives but have not paid attention to the documents about the Armenians. All these countries brought genocide allegations in their parliaments.

    A total of 75 researchers from Britain, which tried to bring the so-called genocide on the Armenians onto the agenda during the Holocaust Memorial Day, have applied to the archives. Only one of these researchers has examined the documents on the Armenians.

    A total of 204 Japanese researchers have applied to refer to the Ottoman archives.

    No foreign researchers referred to the Ottoman archives about the Armenians in 2000, when the resolution on the so-called genocide on the Armenians was brought to the agenda in the U.S. House of Representatives and was adopted in the French parliament.

    A total of 835 researchers, including 637 Turkish and 198 foreigners, referred to the Ottoman archives in 2000. Twelve Turkish researchers examined the archives about the Armenians.

    No foreign researchers examined the documents about the Armenians in January 2001 while one Turkish researcher referred to the archives related with the Armenians.

    -ONE PERSON WHO WANTED TO STAGE BOMB ATTACK ON
    FRENCH CONSULATE GENERAL IN ISTANBUL, CAPTURED
    ISTANBUL - Security forces captured on Monday one person who wanted to stage a bomb attack on the French Consulate General in Istanbul.

    The security forces, which had taken tight measures around the Consulate General for some time, stopped a person who headed towards the building on Sunday night.

    The security forces captured the person who resisted against the police not to surrender.

    One gun without a licence and three hand grenades were also seized.

    Officials identified the detainee as Fevzi Ozcelik and said that Ozcelik wanted to stage a bomb attack on the Consulate General.

    The security forces seized publications of the closed National Youth Foundation (MGV) and the plans of the French Consulate General in the house of Ozcelik.

    -ATO CHAIRMAN AYGUN CALLS ON PRIME MINISTER ECEVIT
    NOT TO PRIVATIZE TURKEY'S BORON BEDS
    ANKARA - Ankara Chamber of Commerce (ATO) Chairman Sinan Aygun called on Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit not to allow the privatization of boron mines in Turkey.

    In a written statement released on Monday, Aygun said that Ecevit, in 1978, had taken boron mines under state control in order to protect public and national interests. The same conditions are also existing today, he pointed out.

    This is the first privatization implementation which ATO is opposing, he pointed out and asked Ecevit not to allow a privatization practice which means mortgaging Turkey's future. Inclusion of the privatization of boron mines in the Letter of Intent which was presented to the International Monetary Fund (IMF) was ''an incredible mistake'' he commented.

    ''There are certain issues which can't even be debated. Boron is a very valuable strategic natural resource,'' Aygun continued. ''If Eti Bor is privatized, Turkey would lose its capital and it becomes dependent on foreign loans. On the other hand, if the necessary investments are made, Turkey which holds 70 percent of the world's total boron reserve worth of 750 billion U.S. dollars could get rid of its debts.''

    Aygun said the government authorities should tell the IMF that the people are against the boron beds' privatization.

    -ATATURK AIRPORT'S INTERNATIONAL LINES TERMINAL EXPANDING
    ISTANBUL - The construction of an additional building at Ataturk Airport's International Lines Terminal started on Monday.

    The new building will increase the annual passenger capacity of the terminal to 30 million people. Currently, the international lines terminal serves to 14 million people a year.

    Tepe-Akfen-Vie (TAV) Consortium Executive Council member Sani Sener told the A.A that the building is expected to be completed by 2004. He said that there would also be a hotel with 80 rooms in the complex.

    Passengers who have to wait for long hours at the airport between two flights will be able to rest at this hotel.

    The complex will also include a sports facility, a restaurant and cafeterias.

    -TREASURY: ''IN JANUARY 2001, INFLATION RATE HAS
    DROPPED TO ITS LOWEST LEVEL SINCE 1976''
    ANKARA - The Treasury Undersecretariat announced that the inflation rate had dropped to its lowest level since 1976 and the increase rate of wholesale prices was below 30 percent for the first time in the last 14 years.

    In a statement released on Monday, the Treasury Undersecretariat evaluated the January inflation figures which were announced by the State Institute of Statistics (DIE) on Sunday.

    Both wholesale and consumer prices in January increased by 2.3 percent compared to the previous month. This figure is 3.5 points less than the increase in the same period of last year for wholesale prices and 2.4 points less for the consumer prices.

    ''The decline of the price increases in private manufacturing industry is an indication to the weakening inflation,'' the statement continued. ''The decrease in inflation which started in March of 2000 is expected to continue in 2001. Strict monetary and financial policies will help Turkey to fight against inflation. Besides, the external factors which had negative effects on the fight against inflation, will reverse and will help the disinflation program. Acceleration of structural reforms including certain privatization practices and the government's determination to reach the previously established economic targets will increase people's confidence in the stability program.''

    -PRESIDENT SEZER: ''SECULARISM IS ASSURANCE OF RELIGIOUS FREEDOM''
    ANKARA - President Ahmet Necdet Sezer said on Monday that secularism which separates state affairs from religious rules, is an indisputable element of the modern world.

    ''Secularism is an inseparable part and the natural outcome of a rational and scientific approach which is the basis for the Kemalist thought,'' Sezer said in a message he released on the 64th anniversary of the introduction of the secularism principle into the Turkish Constitution.

    ''The declaration of the Republic opened a new era for the Turkish nation with the concepts it introduced including freedom, democracy and modernity, '' he said.

    Sezer said that in modern civilizations, individuals have the right to be free and to determine their own future. ''Acting according to this principle, Ataturk achieved to transform the system so that individuals can escape from religious pressures and use their creative power to help their countries and humanity,'' Sezer stated.

    As a part of Ataturk's reforms, Turkey adopted many laws based on the legal systems of modern countries including the Civil Code and this made it possible to reconstruct education, law, culture, economy, politics and many other fields.

    Sezer said secularism in the Kemalist thought, is not only a principle which separates state and religious matters from each other but it also brings forth rational and scientific solutions to problems of daily life.

    ''Secularism which turned the Turkish Republic into a democratic state of law granted equal rights to people from all religions and sects and introduced a social system which respects to human rights,'' he continued.

    ''In a secular system, everybody has freedom of thought and the freedom to practice their own religion. Nobody can be forced to participate in a religious ceremony or announce their religious view. Nobody can be accused or condemned due to their religious views. And nobody can build social, economic, legal and political systems on religious rules, even partially. Nobody is allowed to abuse people's religious feelings for personal interests. Without secularism, there could be no freedom of religion,'' he stressed.

    Interpreting secularism in a different way would seriously slow down Turkey's progress which Ataturk started through his reforms, Sezer concluded his message.

    -NUMBER OF FOREIGN VISITORS EXCEEDS TEN MILLION
    ANKARA - Number of foreign visitors increased 39.3 percent in 2000 compared to figures of previous year.

    Releasing a statement, the State Institute of Statistics (DIE) said on Monday that a total of 10,428,153 foreigners visited Turkey in 2000.

    In January-December period of 1999, 7,487,365 foreigners had visited the country.

    The statement noted that 69.7 percent of foreigners preferred airway while 18.9 percent preferred higway, 11.0 percent preferred seaway and 0.4 percent preferred railway.

    Meanwhile, number of foreign visitors coming to Turkey increased by 32.1 percent to 423,879 in December 2000 compared to figures of the same period last year.

    In December of 1999, 320,808 foreigners visited Turkey.

    -PARLIAMENT SPEAKER IZGI:
    -''WE HAVE RECORDED AN IMPORTANT PROGRESS IN REACHING
    A COMPROMISE AMONG ACTING GROUP CHAIRMAN OF POLITICAL
    PARTIES ON THE ISSUE OF PARLIAMENTARY BY-LAW''
    ANKARA - Parliament Speaker Omer Izgi said on Monday, ''we have recorded an important progress in reaching a compromise among acting group chairmen of political parties on the issue of parliamentary by-law.''

    Izgi met with acting group chairman of political parties having seats at the parliament.

    Addressing journalists after the meeting, Izgi said, ''we have recorded important progress in reaching a compromise among acting group chairmen of political parties on the issue of parliamentary by-law. We postponed the meeting till tomorrow. Acting group chairmen wanted to inform their party members on the latest developments.''

    Izgi added, ''during today's meeting, we have taken a decision. From now on, political parties and MPs will not accuse each other of demise of Fevzi Sihanlioglu, a deputy of the True Path Party (DYP).''

    Aydin Tumen, the Acting Group Chairman of the Democratic Left Party (DSP); Ismail Kose, the Acting Group Chairman of the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP); Avni Dogan, the Acting Group Chairman of the Virtue Party (FP); Zeki Cakan, the Acting Group Chairman of the Motherland Party (ANAP); and Nevzat Ercan, the Acting Group Chairman of the True Path Party (DYP), were in attendance at the meeting.

    -CENTRAL BANK GOVERNOR ERCEL: ''JANUARY INFLATION FIGURES
    INDICATE THAT GOVERNMENT CAN REACH TARGETED ANNUAL INFLATION
    FIGURE IN THE END OF 2001''
    ANKARA - Central Bank Governor Gazi Ercel said that the January inflation figures strengthened people's confidence in the government's disinflation program, and also demonstrated that reaching the annual inflation figure was possible.

    In a written statement released on Monday, Ercel said that Turkey was approaching to the end of the inflation program from which it has been suffering from for 25 years.

    ''We must make good use of this historical opportunity. Our faith in the program is essential for its continuation,'' he stated.


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