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TRKNWS-L Turkish Press Review (December 18, 1995)

From: "Demetrios E. Paneras" <dep@bu.edu>

Turkish News Directory

CONTENTS

  • [01] CILLER'S FLYING VISIT TO MADRID

  • [02] CILLER CONVENES EC COUNCIL

  • [03] TURKEY THANKS WORLD LEADERS FOR SUPPORT

  • [04] ISRAELI SUPPORT FOR CUSTOMS UNION

  • [05] TURKEY'S REPLY TO RUSSIA ON STRAITS ACCEPTED AS UN DOCUMENT

  • [06] US: TURKEY NEEDS ATACMS MISSILES AGAINST IRAN AND IRAQ

  • [07] COOPERATION PROTOCOL SIGNED BETWEEN TURKEY AND AZERBAIJAN

  • [08] TURKISH PRESS ATTACHE IN IRAN DIES OF A HEART ATTACK

  • [09] FOUR PKK MILITANTS KILLED

  • [10] TURKEY TO SHARE IN EUROPALIA

  • [11] NEW "HAMMER" PROPOSALS


  • TURKISH PRESS REVIEW

    MONDAY DECEMBER 18, 1995

    Summary of the political and economic news in the Turkish press this morning

    [01] CILLER'S FLYING VISIT TO MADRID

    Prime Minister Tansu Ciller concluded a short six-hour visit to Madrid on Saturday evening and returned home on Sunday morning, saying the EU had received Turkey's message. Ciller told the leaders of France, Spain and Italy that its newly approved customs union made it the most eligible country to become a full member in the EU, ahead of all the other prospective members.

    While at the meeting, Ciller was able to state Turkey's position on a number of issues, including relations with Greece. She noted that "Turkey was a key European country" with the determination to fit in with European developments.

    Officials with Ciller said after the meetings that talks had been held in a most constructive and positive atmosphere, and that negative issues like PKK terrorism, human rights and radicalism in Turkey had not been mentioned. The Cyprus question was discussed however, and the point made that a customs union deal with the Greek side was out of the question until the island's problems has been resolved. Members of the troika confirmed that everything would be done to solve the Cyprus problem quickly. Again it was understood that the European Union (EU) itself would exert pressure where needed to bring in an agreement.

    When French Head of State Jacques Chirac asked Ciller about the chance of the Welfare Party (RP) in the elections, Ciller said: "The RP will be the first or the second party. The biggest obstacle before it is the True Path Party (DYP). We are the only party which struggles against the RP". /Hurriyet-Sabah/

    [02] CILLER CONVENES EC COUNCIL

    Prime Minister Tansu Ciller convenes the EC Coordination Council today. At the meeting in which top level bureaucrats, representatives from professional organizations and businessmen will participate, issues regarding implementation of the CU will be evaluated. /Milliyet/

    [03] TURKEY THANKS WORLD LEADERS FOR SUPPORT

    Following last week's approval of the Customs Union (CU) by the European Parliament, Turkish leaders have written to various world leaders expressing appreciation for their support. Prime Minister Tansu Ciller wrote to all EU leaders, but a special letter was sent to Greek Prime Minister Andreas Papandreou. Ciller, expressing her pleasure at the realization of CU, said she hoped it would encourage the improvement of bilateral ties and mutual understanding. She noted that the CU was an important milestone in Turkey-EU relations and a historical step taken towards Turkey's full membership in the EU as it was the final aim of the Ankara Agreement. Ciller pointed out that the CU would help economic and commercial relations between Turkey and the EU, and promote effective development from which both sides would benefit.

    Portuguese President Mario Soares, who visited Turkey earlier this year and promised the backing of all Socialist Euro-MPs, topped President Suleyman Demirel's list of thank you notes. Also on the list were Spain's King Juan Carlos and presidents Scalfaro of Italy, Klestil of Austria and Ahtisaari of Finland. Demirel thanked the countries, and the leaders personally, for the efforts they made for ratification of the CU. According to the Presidential Press Centre, in his letters, Demirel said that relations between Turkey and the EU would strengthen and enhance. He indicated that Turkey's alliance with Europe to make it a continent of peace, freedom and prosperity would continue, and that Turkey would participate in every stage of the integration process with Europe. He added that the CU paved the road to the common future of Turkey and the EU. /Hurriyet-Milliyet-Sabah/

    [04] ISRAELI SUPPORT FOR CUSTOMS UNION

    In discussions with journalists, Israeli Ambassador to Turkey, Zvi Elpeleg noted that Israel, a country enjoying close relations with the European Union (EU), had extended support to Turkey by engaging in lobbying activities in favour of the Turkey-EU customs union prior to the European Parliament (EP) voting on December 13. Israeli Prime Minister Shimon Peres sent letters to EP group chairmen, and Ambassador Elpeleg worked in coordination with the embassies of EU member-countries in Turkey.

    Ambassador Elpeleg stressed that Turkey was a country attaching importance to, and supporting, the Middle East peace process. With its democratic and secular structure and free market economy, Turkey was a country with weight in the region, and this strong position would be further reinforced by the customs union, Elpeled added. /Cumhuriyet/

    [05] TURKEY'S REPLY TO RUSSIA ON STRAITS ACCEPTED AS UN DOCUMENT

    A Turkish response to Russian criticism about regulations on ship passage through the Turkish straits was accepted by the UN as a UN document. The Turkish position on the straits was explained in a letter by Huseyin Celem, Turkey's permanent representative to the UN, to UN Secretary-General Boutros Ghali. It said that Russia had, from the very beginning, misrepresented the Turkish position regarding the new regulations which aimed to ensure safety of passage through the Turkish straits. /All papers/

    [06] US: TURKEY NEEDS ATACMS MISSILES AGAINST IRAN AND IRAQ

    US State Department acting spokesman Glyn Davies said that Turkey needed the Army Tactical Missile Systems (ATACMS) not for use against civilians, as alleged, but against such heavily-armed neighbours as Iran and Iraq. "Our view is that Turkey has a need for this missile" Davies said. He said Turkey was 'in a tough neighbourhood in an unstable area' and needs to improve its defence capabilities.

    Meanwhile, Turkish Ambassador to Washington, wrote a strongly- worded letter to Rep.Christopher Smith (R - NJ) to counter Smith's allegations concerning the sale of 120 ATACMS to Turkey at a cost of $130 million. Smith, an outspoken member of the House International Relations Committee and chairman of the US Helsinki Commission, said these missiles could be used by the Turkish government against civilians. "ATACMS is not an anti-terrorist weapon" Kandemir wrote to Smith. The missiles provide a 'needed deterrent for Turkey against the surface-to-surface capabilities its neighbours in the area possess". Smith was reminded that "failure to proceed with the sale would, in fact, deny a needed strategic settlement capability to a NATO ally". /All papers/

    [07] COOPERATION PROTOCOL SIGNED BETWEEN TURKEY AND AZERBAIJAN

    The Turkish and Azeri labour and social security ministries signed a cooperation protocol in Baku, the Anatolia news agency reported on Friday. Turkish Labour Minister Mustafa Kul and Ilgar Rehimov, Acting Azeri Labour Minister, said that the protocol would help to develop relations between the two countries.

    [08] TURKISH PRESS ATTACHE IN IRAN DIES OF A HEART ATTACK

    Hadi Unal, Turkish Press Attache in Tehran, died early Friday morning of a heart attack, the Anatolia news agency reported. The 49-year-old father of two died in the hospital. Unal graduated from the University of Tehran.

    [09] FOUR PKK MILITANTS KILLED

    Three militants of the PKK terrorist organization were killed in Mardin's Elmabahce and Dargecit districts and one in Siirt's Gokcebag. Three militants who escaped from the PKK surrendered in Sirnak's Cizre and Silopi districts. During security operations in the region, 27 PKK militants were detained. /Milliyet/

    [10] TURKEY TO SHARE IN EUROPALIA

    With Turkey accepted as a member of the European Union customs treaty, Belgian government officials said over the weekend that "nothing prevented" Turkey sharing in the 1997 Europalia festival as a guest country.

    Belgian Foreign Minister Eric Derycke said that soon an official announcement would be made in connection with Turkey's share in the huge festival which always promotes a specific country every time the festival is held. For Turkey, the fair will provide the biggest promotion ever. Although Turkey will have to provide a large share of promotion funds, Europalia will also donate some financial aid. "Europalia-Turkey" will cost a lot of money, but will also provide a massive boost to Turkey-European relations. /Milliyet/

    [11] NEW "HAMMER" PROPOSALS

    Next month Foreign Ministry Deputy Undersecretary Ali Tuygan will head a delegation to the US to discuss new proposals for the "Provide Comfort" multinational force stationed in Turkey.

    Among the suggestions that the Turkish delegation will put forward are: less overflights in northern Iraq airspace, an increase in the number of Turkish officers and men in the strike force and restrictions in the duties of the force limiting it to the protection of Iraqi territorial integrity.

    Turkey has always been uneasy about the deployment of the international force at Incirlik base near Adana, and fears about the functions of the force increased when Provide Comfort fighter planes began to ignore overflight rules.

    In view of Turkey's feelings on the issue, the delegation was due to go to the US this month, but the December 24 general election has forced a postponement until next month. /Milliyet/

    END

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