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Anadolu Agency: News in English, 01-02-18

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

18 FEBRUARY

2001 Sunday


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 18, 2000. The Anadolu Agency does not verify these stories and does not vouch for their accuracy.

    HURRIYET (LIBERAL)

    ECEVIT SENDS MESSAGES TO BUSH
    Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit said yesterday that he is worried by last Friday's operation in Iraq. He sent two messages to the U.S. and noted that the U.S. had to inform Turkey before staging the air attack on Iraq. Secondly Ecevit said that it would be useful for the U.S. to re-evaluate the Iraqi problem with Turkey at first opportunity.

    INSPECTION CRISIS IN ANKARA
    A news was spread in Ankara saying that President Ahmet Necdet Sezer ordered his officials to inspect the Banking Regulatory and Supervisory Board (BDDK). Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit said that inspecting an inspector organization is very interesting. Zekeriya Temizel, the Chairman of BDDK said in his part that he was open to inspection. The Presidential Office said that Sezer does not want to inspect the BDDK, but the public banks through BDDK.

    MILLIYET (LIBERAL)

    THEY CAN'T INTIMIDATE US
    Unknown assailants attacked Milliyet newspaper yesterday and opened fire on the newspaper's building. No casualties were reported in the attack which caused material damage. Police started an investigation to capture the assailants.

    MHP WANTS ERSUMER TO RESIGN
    Ortadogu newspaper which is close to the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) said in its headline that Cumhur Ersumer, the Minister of Energy and Natural Resources will quit soon. The paper claimed that MHP leader Devlet Bahceli said ''if Ersumer does not resign, we will support the censure motion submitted by the opposition parties against him.''

    SABAH (LIBERAL)

    BOMB PANIC IN MC DONALDS
    A bomb was found in a McDonalds branch in Istanbul's Aksaray district yesterday. Customers noticed a package left on the second floor of McDonalds branch on Mustafa Kemal Avenue in Aksaray and called the police. Bomb experts disactivated the bomb which was ready to explode. It was stated that the explosive was a time bomb.

    FIVE BANKS IN FUND MERGE
    The five banks which had earlier been transferred to the Savings Deposit Insurance Fund will merge in Sumerbank on February 19. These five banks are Egebank, Sumerbank, Bank Kapital, Yasarbank and Yurtbank. These five banks will start to serve as Sumerbank tomorrow.

    CUMHURIYET (LEFT)

    ANKARA REPROACHES BUSH
    Foreign Minister Ismail Cem had a meeting with U.S. Ambassador to Turkey Robert Pearson and expressed Turkey's concern regarding the U.S. airstrike against Iraq on Saturday. Cem told Pearson that such an incident would not help the normalization of Iraq's relations with the world. Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit also criticized the Bush administration for not informing Turkey about the airstrike before launching it.

    CEM SAYS MAINTAINING SECURITY IS ESSENTIAL FOR CAUCASIA'S
    DEVELOPMENT
    Foreign Minister Ismail Cem has said that Caucasia needed the support of Russia, Iran and Turkey to maintain security in its region. He also emphasized that Caucasian countries should build close contacts with Europe and the United States at a meeting titled ''Search for Stability in Caucasia''. Cem also indicated that Turkey supported Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan pipeline from the very beginning adding that Turkey should have priority for the Caucasian countries.

    RADIKAL (LEFT)

    NO WATER LEFT AT KEBAN DAM
    Water level at Keban Dam did not rise despite the rain that has been continuing for two days. Authorities said currently the water level at the dam is only half a meter. The water code at Keban dropped from 820.43 to 820.30 in one week. It was stated that the dam would stop producing energy if the water code falls under 820.

    LAST 300 METERS IN HALIC
    Istanbul Municipality Protection of Environment Department head Dr. Mustafa Ozturk said that 6,200 meter of Halic has been cleaned off mud. ''We've 300 more meters to clean Halic's water,'' Ozturk said. He said that the municipality installed collectors at the streams which are causing pollution of Halic. The factories causing pollution have also been shut down.

    TURKIYE (RIGHT)

    TWO BOMBS DISACTIVATED BEFORE THEY WENT OFF IN ISTANBUL
    AND DIYARBAKIR
    McDonalds employees at Istanbul's Aksaray district noticed a package left on the second floor of the building. The employees called the police who came and disactivated the bomb. It was stated that the bomb was set to explode at noon. In a separate incident in Diyarbakir, another bomb was found on Diyarbakir-Elazig highway. The security forces who came to the scene disactivated the bomb. It was reported that the bomb wouldn't have gone off because it was wet with rain.

    PKK-ASALA COOPERATION
    It was reported that terrorist organization PKK supported the genocide allegations of the Armenians with 70 million U.S. dollars. The Armenian diaspora asked for PKK member Murat Karayilan's help to erect a genocide monument in the Assen city of the Netherlands. Karayilan is in charge of organizing PKK's activities in Europe. Five officials from Armenia recently went to the Netherlands to meet with PKK terrorists.

    ZAMAN (CONSERVATIVE)

    WOMEN URGE GOVERNMENT TO PASS NEW CIVIL CODE
    Women marched in Istanbul to express support to the new Civil Code which is being debated at Parliament Justice Commission. KADER chairman Zulal Kilic said ''a lot has changed in Turkey in the last 75 years.'' Kilic said certain improvements were definitely needed in the current Civil Code regarding women's role in the household.

    -FIVE BANKS TO MERGE UNDER SUMERBANK AS OF MONDAY
    ANKARA - Fund Banks Joint Executive Council Directorate announced on Saturday that five banks would be merged under Sumerbank as of Monday.

    The directorate said in a written statement that Bank Kapital, Egebank, Sumerbank, Tutunculer Bankasi, Yasarbank, Yurt Ticaret ve Kredi Bankasi would carry out their activities under Sumerbank as of Feb. 19, 2001.

    As of Monday, the above mentioned banks will give service as Sumerbank branches. All customers of these five banks will automatically become Sumerbank's customers.

    The statement also assured savings owners that all the savings in these banks were under the guarantee of the Deposit Savings Insurance Fund therefore there was no reason to feel concern.

    Cevdet Erkanli will become the General Director of Sumerbank.

    -STATE MINISTER GUREL LEAVES FOR IRAN
    ISTANBUL - State Minister Sukru Sina Gurel left for Iran on Saturday night to participate in the international conference that will be staged by the initiatives of the United Nations (U.N).

    Speaking at Istanbul's Ataturk Airport about his visit, Sina Gurel said that the conference will be a preliminary meeting in Asia for the World Conference Against Racism and Xenophobia that will be held in Republic of South Africa in September.

    ''We participate as observer to the conference that will be held between 19- 28 Feb. This will be a big conference in which Asian countries will be represented at the ministrial level and very important issues for Turkey will be discussed,'' Gurel said.

    Gurel noted that he will have the opportunity to meet with ministers of various countries including Iranian Foreign Minister during the conference.

    Responding to a question about U.S's not informing Turkey about the airstrike on Iraq, Gurel said that Prime Minister Ecevit issued an important statement about this issue.

    ''There is nothing to add to the statement of Premier Ecevit. We expect the U.S. to consult with Turkey about its foreign policy activities in this region within the framework of the existing good relations between Turkey and the U.S. We hope this will be the case from now on,'' Gurel said.

    -MUMCU:''WE WANT TO HOST 13 MILLION TOURISTS IN 2001''
    MARMARIS - Tourism Minister Erkan Mumcu has said that his ministry targetted to host 13 million tourists and obtain 10 billion U.S. dollars of tourism revenues in 2001.

    Mumcu had a meeting with mayors and district governors of Mugla's Marmaris township on Saturday where they discussed the infrastructure related problems of south Aegean region. Mumcu announced that he would assign one third of the Tourism Ministry's investment budget to Mugla.

    ''Mugla and Antalya region hosted about six million tourists last year. We'll try to bring a quick solution to the region's infrastructure problem. This way, we can increase the tourism revenues significantly,'' Mumcu said at the meeting.

    Mumcu emphasized that only the tourism sector managed to meet the set up targets last year.

    Mugla governor Lutfi Yigenoglu said he would inform the Tourism Ministry about the city's problems which need urgent solution within ten days.

    -SAO TOME FLAGGED SHIP WHICH COLLIDES WITH MALAYSIAN
    CARGO SHIP IN ISTANBUL STRAIT, SINKS
    -12 SEAMEN RESCUED
    ISTANBUL - Two cargo ships collided in Istanbul Strait on Sunday. Sao Tome flagged ship sank in the accident, while its crew of 12 seamen were rescued.

    Sao Tome flagged ''Robel'' ship collided with Malaysian flagged ''Bunga Melor Stau'' at 05.25 local time as they moved at the same time.

    Robel which was seriously damaged due to the collision, sank. The other ship was not damaged seriously.

    -ITO TO DEBATE ARMENIAN ISSUE
    ISTANBUL - Istanbul Chamber of Commerce (ITO) board will hold a meeting on February 27, Tuesday to have a comprehensive debate on the Armenian issue.

    Former foreign ministers, ambassadors, and lecturers from a number of universities and Armenian Patriarch Mesrob Mutafyan have been invited to the meeting. ITO Executive Council Chairman Mehmet Yildirim told the A.A that ''they would chiefly focus on sanctions against France and other forms of boycott.''

    Drawing attention to the passage of the Armenian law at the French Parliament, ITO Board Chairman Atalay Sahinoglu said that they wanted to organize a very objective meeting that would satisfy everyone who are interested in this matter.

    -PROF. AYBARS: ''THERE'RE AT LEAST 3,000 ARMENIANS WHO ARE IN
    CHARGE OF SPREADING GENOCIDE ALLEGATIONS IN THE WEST''
    IZMIR - Prof. Ergun Aybars, head of Kemalist Thought Association and Chairman of Ataturk's Principles Institute at Dokuz Eylul University has said that ''At least 3,000 Armenians are in charge of spreading the genocide allegations in European countries.''

    Prof. Aybars told the A.A that domestic and foreign forces who want to divide Turkey were trying to create the chaotic environment of 1919. ''Under the present circumstances, we need the spirit of Kuvay-i Milliye (National Independence Army) more than we ever did,'' Aybars contended. ''However we're failing to develop long term policies against these lobbies, '' he added.

    He explained that no research was carried out about Armenians before 1985 because it was not allowed by the state which made Turkey lose 30 years. The Armenian lobby is very well organized in European countries and there are at least 3,000 Armenians who are in charge of spreading genocide allegations in these countries, he said.

    ''The Armenian lobby buys shares of media institutions in Western countries and they can easily make their propoganda through television broadcasts. Turkey can disprove Armenian allegations and reveal their real face by doing the same,'' he said.

    -THE DUTCH AMBASSADOR TO TURKEY GOSSES SAYS
    AGRICULTURAL COOPERATION BETWEEN TWO COUNTRIES DEVELOPS
    GAZIANTEP - Sjoerd I. H. Gosses, the Dutch Ambassador to Turkey said on Saturday that the agricultural cooperation between the two countries is developing.

    Responding to a question in a meeting held by Gaziantep Trade Chamber (GTO), Gosses said that Turkey and the Netherlands have complementary characteristics in agriculture sector.

    Noting that Turkey has interesting climate, soil, market and agriculture industry, Gosses said that Turkey has to organize its agriculture sector to join the European Union (EU). The Netherlands and Turkey can help each other by producing together, he said adding that they can contribute to development of bovine animals in Turkey.

    GTO Chairman Mehmet Aslan said in his part that the Dutch firms don't have any investment in Gaziantep.

    ''Gaziantep has a rich potential in respect of investment. We can invest together and export our products to the Middle East countries and Turkish Republics,'' he said.

    The Dutch Foreign Economic Relations Undersecretary Dick J. Bruinsma said in his part that Turkey has to review its policies first to attract more investment.

    ''President Ahmet Necdet Sezer will visit the Netherlands in April, following this visit, the Dutch agriculture and trade ministers will come to Turkey,'' Bruinsma added.

    The delegation composed of high ranking administrators of the Dutch Joint Economic Council came to Gaziantep after their visit to Sanlıurfa and they visited organized industry and free zone.

    -GERMAN AUTHORITIES:''TURKS HAVE SIGNIFICANT CONTRIBUTIONS
    TO GERMAN ECONOMY''
    DUISBURG - Economic contribution of Turkish immigrants in Germany was discussed at a symposium in Duisburg on Saturday.

    Speaking at the symposium, North Rhine Westphalia State Labour Ministry Undersecretary Josef Fischer said that Germany needed the immigrants who have become an inseperable part of the German society starting in 1960's. He also pointed to the social and economic contributions of immigrants to his society.

    Fischer said the Turks who constitute the largest immigrant group in Germany have started making investments in Germany in the recent years while they were preferring Turkey for their investments in the beginning. He said the North Rhine Westphalia state had been giving them the support they needed for adaptation to the German society.

    Labour and Social Affairs Spokesman at the German Embassy in Ankara Gerhild Pinkvoss Muller who also spoke at the meeting said fight against xenophobia had become one of the main targets for the German government. ''As someone who knows Turkey and its people, I've witnessed the productivity of the Turkish people,'' Muller commented.

    Duisburg Mayor Heinz Pletziger said Turks in Duisburg were active in many sectors and had significant contributions to the city's economic development.

    Turkey Research Center (TAM) Administrative Affairs Director Andreas Goldberg said Turkish entrepreneurs were manufacturing products and giving service in 91 sectors and also helping the social adjustment.

    -LECTURER BEYOGLU SAYS THERE IS NO DOCUMENT
    IN ARCHIVES OF THE U.S. BRITAIN, FRANCE, ITALY,
    RUSSIA, GERMANY AND TURKEY THAT TALKS ABOUT
    GENOCIDE ON ARMENIANS
    ISTANBUL - Lecturer in Marmara University Suleyman Beyoglu said on Saturday that there is not any document in the American, British, French, Italian, Russian, German and Turkish archives that talks about genocide on Armenians.

    Speaking in a panel discussion on ''Armenian issue'' Beyoglu said that after the adoption of the Ottoman law on deportation in 1915, 800,000 Armenians were deported as many Armenians prevented the transfer of the army's munitions and military stuff in Eastern Anatolia, they helped the enemy and Armenian armed gangs attacked civilians. These Armenians were deported only from the East Anatolian region. This deportation lasted till September 1916, and Armenians were settled in Syria, northern parts of Iraq, aid and money was given to them.

    Beyoglu stressed that a total of 1,347 persons were tried as they tried to take benefit of the deportation, adding that some of these persons were executed. Ottoman officers of Armenian origin were also among those who were tried, he said noting that the Armenian population was 1,3 million in East Anatolian region at those times. He said that 200,000-300,000 Armenians died because of illness during the deportation.

    Recounting that 2,5 million Turks died during the First World War, Beyoglu said that ''why did a state which wants to commit genocide, deport 800,000 persons? It could have killed people in the country.''

    Lecturer in Fırat University Ergunoz Akcura showed the photographs of the massacres committed by Armenians in Van and its surroundings taken by foreign journalists.

    -TREASURY UNDERSECRETARY DEMIRALP SAYS HE WILL DISCUSS
    ECONOMIC PROGRAMME WITH FISCHER
    ISTANBUL - Treasury Undersecretary Selcuk Demiralp said on Sunday that he will meet with Stanley Fischer, the IMF First Deputy Managing Director about the economic programme that is being implemented by the government.

    Speaking to reporters, Demiralp said that Fischer will probably come to Istanbul today and he can proceed to Ankara after the G-20 meeting.

    Demiralp said that deputy finance ministers and deputy central bank governors of member countries will participate in G-20 meeting, adding that the aim of the meeting is to determine the date, place and agenda of the meeting of finance ministers.

    Demiralp said that they will focus on globalization, the problems caused by globalization and the role of the private sector in financial crises in the meeting, adding that they will examine the earlier activities of G-20 carried out in this issue.

    Demiralp said that the programme will start by dinner today, adding that the main meeting will start on Monday morning, last till 17.30 local time and end with the dinner that will be hosted by the Turkish side.

    Noting that the attendees won't particularly talk about Turkey, Demiralp said that every country will explain its own experiences.

    ''We will explain the measures taken about financial problems in Turkey. As this meeting is generally close to the press, no statement will be issued. Generally the statements are issued at the ministers meeting,'' he asid.

    Upon a question, Demiralp said that the place of the finance ministers meeting in fall this year will be determined during tomorrow's meeting.

    Demiralp and Central Bank's Deputy Governor Sukru Binay, who represent Turkey in G-20 meeting will work today on the draft of the issues that will be discussed during the meeting.

    G-20 group was formed on Sept. 26, 1999 by industrialized seven countries; 11 countries namely Turkey, Argentina, Brazil, China, India, Mexico, Russia, Australia, Saudi Arabia, South Africa, South Korea and institutions like IMF, World Bank and EU.

    -STATE MINISTER TOSKAY SAYS HE WISHES RELATIONS
    WITH IRAQ NOT TO BE INTERRUPTED
    JOHANNESBURG-ANKARA - State Minister Tunca Toskay said on Sunday that he wishes the relations between Turkey and Iraq, which yielded positive results in the last one year not to be interrupted.

    Speaking to reporters before departing from Johannesburg, Toskay said that ''it is not possible for Turkey to separate economy from politics'' upon a question asked to him on possible effects of airstrike launched in Iraq.

    Toskay said that exporters have serious problems relating to Value Added Tax.

    Noting that they will make the trade consultation system a mixed one in which both public and also private sectors will be represented, Toskay said that big trade centers will founded abroad.

    -OKUYAN SAYS DRAFT LAW ON FOREIGN WORKERS WILL PASS
    IN THREE OR FOUR MONTHS
    ISTANBUL - Labour and Social Security Minister Yasar Okuyan has said that his ministry was planning to pass the draft law regarding the working regulations of foreigners in Turkey within three or four months.

    Okuyan said his ministry was in charge of insurance and medical deeds of about 50 million people.

    The Social Security Agency (SSK) has been trying to carry out its activities with Treasury aids in the last eight years. Last year, through the social security reform, SSK received 2 billion U.S. dollars less last year which was an important development.

    Okuyan said within two years no patients will have to wait in a line at a SSK hospital and pointed out that his ministry had already cut off the waiting time by half at certain SSK hospitals.

    Drawing attention to corruption, waste of resources and abuse in the SSK, Okuyan said the inspections should become tighter.

    He said all people who are covered by SSK will have a social security card which could be used in making appointments and getting medicine. The card which will be the size of a driver's licence will have all the personal information of the card holder, including all medical information even the x-ray films.

    Responding to a question on illegal foreign workers in Turkey, Okuyan said there was an estimated one million illegal workers in Turkey. ''These people are living unlawfully in Turkey. Possible job accidents and deaths of these people would cause serious problems in the international platforms.''

    ''The unemployment rate in Turkey is 11.2 percent. When this is the case, employing one million foreign workers illegally means stealing the jobs of those unemployed Turks. We can't tolerate this.''

    The draft law on foreign workers which has been recently sent to the Cabinet proposes to fine an employee for 2.5 billion TL for hiring an illegal immigrant. If the same person is caught for the second time, the amount of fine will increase to 5 billion TL. The employee will also pay for the travel costs of the illegal immigrant who will be deported from Turkey.

    -RETIRED AMBASSADOR SIMSIR SAYS ARMENIANS
    WERE NOT KILLED, BUT DEPORTED IN 1915
    ANKARA - Retired Ambassador Bilal Simsir said on Sunday that Armenians were not killed, but deported in 1915.

    Speaking in a panel discussion on claims of so-called genocide on Armenians, Simsir said that these claims are all lies, adding that they are put forward as a result of the enemy's propoganda.

    Lecturer Huseyin Celik said in his part that Ottomans didn't try to change the culture of peoples and assimilate them in the territories which they conquered. Celik said that Armenians' mind were poisoned by the western states promising their foundation of an independent state.

    Noting that there was no genocide on Armenians, Celik said that peoples from both sides died in the clashes.

    Prof. Hasan Koni said that today's world is based on images, rather than facts and Turkey has to lobby against these unreal claims.

    -FIGHTERS FOR NATURE PROTEST SHIP ACCIDENT AT BOSPHORUS
    ISTANBUL - Fighters for Nature environmentalist organization protested the ship accident that took place when a cargo ship sank at Bosphorus on Sunday morning.

    The environmentalists who gathered at Zeytinburnu coast shouted slogans saying ''We don't want ships in the straits''.

    Organization Chairman Zafet Murat Cetintas said that the number of sank ships increased to 22 with Sunday's accident. He said four more ship accidents took place since they warned the authorities last year in December. ''This ship was loaded with iron but the ships which are involved in accidents could be full of oil or liquid gas. The danger is huge.''

    Cetintas stated that the sank ship will not be taken out of the sea and pollute the sea ground just like the previous ships. ''Oil and other pollution causing substances are spreading to the sea and destroying the sea ground, especially the fish.''

    Cetintas claimed that Russia would try to transport a big part of the Kazakh oil through Turkish straits using very old and unrepairable ships. ''This will increase the annual number of ships passing from Turkish straits from 50,000 to 150,000. We definitely don't want such ships pass though our straits,'' he asserted.


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