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Turkish Press Review, 97-01-30
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From: Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs <http://www.mfa.gov.tr>
TURKISH PRESS REVIEW
THURSDAY JANUARY 30, 1997
Summary of the political and economic news in the Turkish press this morning.
 GOOD NEWS FROM EUROPETurkish Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Tansu Ciller met on Wednesday in Rome with the foreign ministers of France, Germany, Italy, Spain and Britain. During the meeting, Europe's "Big Five" powers reassured Turkey that there were no obstacles in principle to its future EU membership, but noted that Turkey's human rights record and policy on Kurds posed "difficulties" for membership.
Ciller, on the other hand, said the EU's 1989 rejection of Turkey's membership application had lost its validity and Ankara would seek a reevaluatıon of the membership bid during the term presidency of Holland. "The Europe which rejected Turkey's application and the Europe today are not the same; therefore the reply given us at that time is no longer valid, Ciller noted at a press conference after her meeting with the EU ministers. /Sabah/
 CENTRAL BANK ACTS AGAINST MONEY LAUNDERINGThe Central Bank has announced its decision to stop issuing certificates of deposits to customers without proper credentials. This decision was a part of the measures to combat money laundering approved by the government at a meeting last August. The new regulation will become effective after its publication in the Official Gazette, and existing certificates will remain valid until their maturity period expires.
The Turkish Parliament passed a law aimed at curbing money laundering in November as a part of the fight against organized crime, particularly drug smuggling. /All papers/
 ITALY WORRIED OVER TURCO-GREEK TENSIONItalian Prime Minister Romano Prodi on Wednesday expressed concern over tensions raised between Turkey and Greek following the decision of the Greek Cypriot administration to purchase Russian S-300 missiles. Prodi said he believed "the stationing of the missiles on the island needs to be prevented." He added that Turkey was a key country for ensuring the balances in the Mediterranean and noted that Turkey's affiliation to Europe was an advantage for all Europe. /All papers/
 TOP GREEK POLITICIANS RECEIVE GREEK-TURKISH AWARDThe biannual Abdi Ipekci Peace and Friendship award will be presented to three Greek politicians. Former Greek Prime Minister Constantin Michotakis, acting Greek Foreign Minister Yorgos Papandreu and Mihalis Papayiannakis, member of the European Parliament from the Greek Left Coalition Party will receive the award for their efforts in developing Turco-Greek friendship and cooperation.
The Ipekci Award has been presented every two years since 1980 to recipients chosen by a panel of Greek and Turkish journalists. The award ceremony alternating between Athens and Istanbul, will be held in Istanbul in March. /All papers/
 BSEC FREE TRADE ZONE PLANNING UNDER WAYBlack Sea Economic Cooperation (BSEC) foreign ministers are to meet in Istanbul to start work on establishing a new free trade zone, Foreign Ministry deputy spokesman Sermet Atacanli said at a weekly press conference on Wednesday. The free trade zone will increase the volume and diversity of trade, Atacanli noted. Foreign Ministers from Albania, Azerbaijan, Bulgaria, Armenia, Georgia, Moldovia, Romania, Russia, Ukraine and Greece have been invited to the meeting. /Cumhuriyet/
 UN FLAG SAFEGUARDING PKKBecause the UN flag is still flying over the notorious Atrush camp in northern Iraq, the PKK terrorist organization is being kept safe from attack by security forces.
The camp was recently evacuated because the PKK had reportedly taken over the camp and was using it as a recruitment centre. Technically operated by the UN High Commission for Refugees, Atrush camp was emptied on December 21 last year, but the UN flag is still there-offering safety to PKK terrorists who are still in the camp.
The Turkish government has since been having talks with regional leaders about the situation, seeking a solution that will force the PKK to leave the camp, and also secure the safety of remaining refugees in the camp. /Sabah/
 FAMILIES FROM ATRUSH CAMP IN HAKKARIEleven families forced to live in the Atrush refugee camp for three years because of PKK terrorism, have now now returned to Hakkari, in the southeast of Turkey.
The 73 people in the eleven families are being housed in a camp until permanent housing facilities can be found for them. Other camps being prepared nearby will provide accomodation for another 2,500 people. /Hurriyet/
 NARCOTICS REPORT TO GERMANYAs the tension in Turco-German relations stemming from the claim of Frankfurt District Court Judge Rolf Schwabe implicating the Turkish Government and Foreign Minister of being involved in drug trafficking has not subsided, Çiller has presented a report on the issue to her German counterpart Klaus Kinkel.
Information on Turkey's cooperation with Western countries against drug trafficking was included in the report which also gave a list of people arrested in Western countries upon the information furnished by Turkey. The report, prepared with the cooperation of the Foreign Ministry and Interior Ministry, stressed that many countries, among them Britain, Germany and Holland, did not cooperate in the fight against drug trafficking at times.
German Foreign Minister Klaus Kinkel said that this issue should not effect Turco-German relations and added that they would welcome a visit by Turkish Prime Minister Erbakan to Germany and that he would like to visit Turkey soon./Milliyet/
 OPERATIONS AGAINST HIZBULLAH ORGANIZATION IN BATMANIn operations carried out against the Hizbullah organization in Batman, 26 people have been apprehended and ammunition seized. Batman Governor Salih Sarman said that the Hizbullah organization has lost its power in Batman. /Sabah/
 TURKISH MINISTERS TO VISIT USTurkish ministers will attend an annual meeting of the American-Turkish Council in Washington on 19-22 February. Ministers invited to the meeting include: State Minister Abdullah Gul, Defence Minister Turhan Tayan, Energy Minister Recai Kutan, Agriculture Minister Musa Demirci and Tourism Minister Bahattin Yucel. It is reported that at the end of the meeting awards will be presented to 20 people including Turkish businessmen Sakip Sabanci, Rahim Koc and Deputy Chief of Turkish General Staff Gen.Cevik Bir. /Cumhuriyet/
 BURNS: "TURKEY'S PLACE IS IN EUROPE"In a press conference yesterday, US State Department Spokesman Nicholas Burns said that Turkey supported NATO's expansion. Noting that Turkey's place was in Europe and in European institutions, Burns said: "Turkey's relations with the EU should be further developed". Burns stated that the West should open up to Turkey. Answering a journalist's question, Burns said that the US was opposed to the purchase of Russian missiles by the Greek Cypriots, but had received a guarantee that the missiles or parts would not be transferred to Cyprus within 16 months. Burns added: "We believe that Turkey is very important for the West. Although the EU will decide upon membership, we think that conditions which are not put forward for other countries should also not be applied against Turkey". /Cumhuriyet/
 RP DEPUTY APPOINTED PACE DEPUTY CHAIRMANWelfare Party (RP) Adana Deputy Cevdet Akcali has been appointed Deputy Chairman of the Parliamentarian Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE). German Parliamentarian Leni Fischer has been re-elected to the chairmanship. There are 16 parliamentarians, including Akcali, acting as deputy chairmen. In elections held for commission chairman and deputies, Mugla Deputy from the Mortherland Party (ANAP) Lale Aytaman became Deputy Chairwoman of the Environment Commission. /Hurriyet/
 "PEACE LOVERS SHOULD NOT SELL ARMS"Turkey has reacted against the decision of the Russian delegation to hold contacts in Ankara to contribute to finding a solution to the political crisis in Cyprus, and announced that Russia should review its decision to sell S-300 missile systems to northern Cyprus.
Turkish Foreign Ministry officials yesterday stated: "Whoever wants peace on the island, should never sell arms. By selling missile systems to the south, Russia has increased the tension on the island." Sermet Atacanli of the Information Department of the Foreign Ministry, said: "Russia evaluates the issue as "trade". However we have explained to them that the issue has a political dimension. Russia has sabotaged the peace efforts on the island by selling missile systems to South Cyprus." /Cumhuriyet/
 TURKISH CONSTRUCTORS IN CHECHENYATurkish construction firms are ready to help in the re-construction of Chechenya, where a democratic election was held last Monday to establish a new political structure. Turkish constructors said that Turkey and Chechenya had cultural and geographic similarities and added: "It will be to the benefit of both the Turkish and Chechen nations."
Chairman of the Turkish Construction Employers Trade Union, Sami Sarı announced that a Turkish delegation would visit the war-ruined region to held contacts with Chechen officials. /Cumhuriyet/
 "CONSTRUCTION OF GOLD REFINERY TO START"Chairman of the Istanbul Gold Exchange, Erden Saner, said that the construction of a new gold refinery would start in 1997 as part of plan to benefit from the gold owned by the public. Saner recalled that people owned about 5,000 tons in gold reserves which equalled about to $ 60-70 billion. He added that this amount of gold should be turned into certificates and that the Turkish economy would benefit from it.
Saner said that the Istanbul Gold Exchange would be a founder-member and the Treasury would be represented in refinery operations./Milliyet/
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