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Turkish Press Review, 97-04-04
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From: Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs <http://www.mfa.gov.tr>
TURKISH PRESS REVIEW
FRIDAY, APRIL 4, 1997
Summary of the political and economic news in the Turkish press this morning
 TURKEY DEMANDS ACTION ON EUROPEAN ARSON ATTACKSTurkish Permanent Representative to the United Nations Tugay Ulucevik asked the U.N. Human Right Commission to observe one minute of silence on Thursday for the victims of recent arson attacks in Europe which are suspected to have been racially motivated. The Anatolia news agency reported that Ulucevik called on western European countries to act swiftly together against the violent acts and stressed that international law considers racism "a crime, not a thought." He urged European countries to strengthen their legislative and judicial systems to deal with such crimes.
A Turkish delegation from the Turkish Parliament's Human Rights Commission met at The Hague with Dutch Prime Minister Wim Kok. The group announced that at present, "conclusions about the evidence or who is responsible can go no further than a guess," and urged Dutch officials to find and arrest those who had carried out the attacks.
On the other hand, the president of the Greens in the European Parliament, Claudia Roth, sent out a press release Wednesday condemning the recent attacks against Turks in Europe. Roth states that eliminating against racism should be the official policy of the EU and the state policy of Germeny./Milliyet/Sabah_
 DEMIREL IN SLOVENIA FOR OFFICIAL VISITPresident Suleyman Demirel is in Slovenia for an official visit upon the invitation of Slovenian President Milan Kucan. Demirel is the first Turkish head of state to visit Slovenia since it became independent in 1991.
Demirel met with President Kucan at the Presidential Palace on Thursday. Later a luncheon was given by Slovenian Parliament Speaker Janez Podobnik in his honor.
Demirel will be meeting with the Slovenian President, the speaker of parliament, and officials from the Slovenian Chamber of Commerce during his visit. A civil aviation agreement will be signed between the two countries, and a business council will be set up to boost bilateral trade./Cumhuriyet/
 TURKISH-SLOVAK RELATIONS ON THE RIGHT TRACKSlovakian Prime Minister Vladimir Meciar, currently visiting Turkey, on Thursday toured the state-run military electronics company ASELSAN. The Slovakian prime minister began his three-day official visit on Wednesday in Ankara, heading a delegation of four ministers including Defense Minister Jan Sitek, who together with Turkish Chief of General Staff Ismail Hakki Karadayi signed a defense agreement between the two nations./Cumhuriyet/
 DUTCH FM MIERLO IN ANKARADutch Foreign Minister Hans Van Mierlo arrived in Ankara on Thursday from Greece, aiming in his capacity as the term president of the European Union to contribute to a solution of the problems between the two countries. Van Mierlo brought a message from Greek foreign minister Theodoros Pangalos, listing conditions for Athens to lift its veto on EU funds for Turkey. The main condition is said to be that the Turkish Parliament renounce Turkey's threat of retaliation in the Aegean if Greece extends its territorial waters to 12 nautical miles. The second condition is that Ankara should not dispute present borders in the Aegean and refrain from insisting that the borders there have not been set, as it has been repeatedly claimed. The third condition is that Turkey agree to taking Aegean disputes to arbitration at the International Court of Justice in The Hague. b Among the other key isues taken up by Mierlo during his talks with Foreign Minister Tansu Ciller in Ankara on Thursday was the subject of preparations for the Turkey-EU Association Council meeting planned for April 9. One of the key topics to be taken up during the Association Council, the highest organ in Turkish-EU ties, will be Turkey's participation in the European Conference planned for this summer./Sabah/
 FRENCH SUPPORT FOR TURKEY'S EU MEMBERSHIPFrench Foreign Minister Herve de Charette swept through the Turkish capital on Thursday spreading political largesse by assuring Turks of their place in Europe and drawing a soothing perspective for Ankara in terms of its bid for eventual EU membership. Charette was keen to repeatedly underline the great importance Turkey held for his country and for Europe.
Received by President Demirel hours after he arrived in Ankara on Wednesday evening, the Presidential Press Office cited de Charette as saying that Turkey was the central pillar of regional balances that always made its weight felt. De Charette was reported as telling President Demirel that France's position was absolutely clear on the subject of the kind of new and larger Europe that should be established./Cumhuriyet/
 GEN.BIR TO JOIN WEU MILITARY ARM MEETINGDeputy Chief of General Staff Gen. Cevil Bir is to fly to Paris next week to participate in a Western European Union (WEU) meeting which will be attended by the Chiefs of General Staff of Europe on April 9-10, the Anatolia news agency reported.
 US DELEGATION VISIT N.IRAQA delegation consisting of top officials from the U.S. State Department has visited northern Iraq for talks with the leaders of the two rival Kurdish groups there. The delegation headed by David Welch of the State Department, met with Onur Oymen, undersecretary of the Foreign Ministry on Wednesday. Following the talks in northern Iraq, the delegation is expected to hold further discussions in Ankara a few days later./All papers/
 LEADING PKK FIGURE ARRESTED IN BERLINA leading Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) figure, 'Nasir C.', has been arrested in Berlin, Germany, on grounds of organizing arson attacks and causing damage to property, the Anatolia news agency reported. According to information received from the Chief Prosecutor's Office, Nasir C. was the director of the Kurdish Intellectual Association, a suborganization of the PKK, in 1994./Sabah/
 SURPRISE TALKS WITH SYRIAOn March 10-13, a technical committee from the State Water Board attended a conference in Syria to discuss the continuing "water issue" that is a source of contention between Turkey and Syria.
The Turkish delegation went to Damascus to join in talks about new dam projects and were amazed when the Syrian side actually requested less water during the construction of Turkey's Tesrin dam on the Euphrates River. Other technical matters were also taken up during the talks./Milliyet/
 INTERNET 97 FAIRYesterday saw the opening of the Internet 97 Fair at the Harbiye Military Museum in Istanbul. Managed by Interpro, the fair sets out to display all the latest developments in communications, computer services and information links across the world. The fair will last until April 6./Cumhuriyet/
 MEMBERSHIP TWENTY YEARS HENCEAccording to a top US diplomat, it will be another twenty years before Turkey is admitted as a full member in the European Union (EU).
Donald Kursch, a top US diplomat with strong connections with the EU, said that the EU door was still open to Turkey, but that it would be twenty years before Turkey would actually go through it. According to Kursch, that will be the earliest that Turkey could expect to be included in the EU. /Hurriyet/
 ISTANBUL POLICE CARRY OUT SUCCESSFUL TOXIC GAS OPERATIONIn a successful operation, the Istanbul police managed to seize 20 tubes of toxic gas planned to be sold to the terrorist PKK organization. The toxic gas was stolen from a factory in Russia producing gas bombs and was brought to Istanbul to be sold to PKK terrorists. The gas was destructive enough to kill the whole population of Istanbul.
Mahmut Ozkal, one of the smugglers involved in the case, said that he had first planned to sell the gas to PKK terrorists in Armenia. But afraid that the terrorists would kill him, he changed his mind and decided to deliver the deadly gas to PKK members in Istanbul.
Among the toxic gas tubes seized by the Istanbul police there were tubes full of gas similar to that used in a gas attack in the Tokyo subway in 1995. The gas effects the nervous system. Victims are paralyzed and die in 1-2 minutes./All papers/
 IMF PRAISES "BAG TRADE"According to an IMF report, the yearly volume of "bag trade" realized by foreign tourists buying goods from Laleli, Istanbul, amounted to $13 billion. Taxes imposed on the "bag trade" would raise enough revenue to close the deficit in Turkey's balance of payments./Sabah/
 ERBAKAN CALLS FOR INVESTMENT MOBILIZATIONPrime Minister Necmettin Erbakan has invited the private sector and foreign entrepreneurs to initiate fresh investments in Turkey. He said that new investments initiated all over the country would contribute to national prosperity, and would open up new horizons for Turkish businessmen. "Turkey is a country of new opportunities," Erbakan noted./Milliyet/
 TOURISM AWARD FOR GERMANYTourism Ministry Undersecretary Nedim Ozturk announced that during the Tourism week to be celebrated on April 15-22, Germany will be presented an award as the country having sent the highest number of tourists to Turkey. The award will be given to German Ambassador to Ankara Hans Joachim Vergau at a ceremony at the Lutfi Kirdar Congress Hall in Istanbul./Cumhuriyet/
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