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Turkish Press Review, 97-04-09
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From: Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs <http://www.mfa.gov.tr>
TURKISH PRESS REVIEW
APRIL 9, 1997
Summary of the political and economic news in the Turkish press this morning.
 LEVY IN ANKARAIsraeli Foreign Minister David Levy arrived yesterday in Ankara bringing a message of friendship and said that relations between the two countries were not aimed against any other third country. Levy told reporters at the airport that a free trade agreement between the two countries which was recently ratified by the Turkish Parliament was one of the best proofs of the good bilateral relations enjoyed by Turkey and Israel. Levy said he had brought a message of frindship from Israeli President Ezer Weizman and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
Yesterday evening Levy had a meeting with Prime Minister Necmettin Erbakan. In a statement after the meeting Levy said that discussions had been held in a warm atmosphere and that issues of bilateral and international importance were taken in hand. Levy then had a dinner with Ciller. Yesterday the Israeli Foreign Minister also met President Demirel and Chief of the General Staff General Ismail Hakki Karadayi.
 NATION SAYS FAREWELL TO TURKESLeader of the MHP party, Alparslan Turkes was given a huge farewell by thousands of supporters during day-long funeral ceremonies yesterday.
Despite the cold and the snow blocking the streets of the capital, tens of thousands turned out to join the funeral cortege as it wound its way first to the parliament, then to Kocatepe mosque then finally to the last resting place of Turkes. For most of the people watching and attending the funeral, the ceremonies were a public demonstration of national unity as all political leaders met at the funeral services. /All papers/
 NEW US AMBASSADOR TO ANKARAMarc Parris has been announced as the new US ambassador to Ankara. President Clinton revealed the new appointment early in the week, and officials say that an official statement will be released soon. Parris is known to be an expert on Middle East and Russian affairs.
Present US ambassador to Ankara, Marc Grossman will move on to take over the Europe Desk in the State Department. /Sabah/
 UN CHIEF TO MEET DENKTASUN Secretary General Kofi Annan will meet Turkish Cypriot President Rauf Denktas in Geneva today, amid an increasingly favourable atmosphere surrounding efforts to find a solution to the Cyprus problem. UN Resident Representative on the island, Gustave Feissel, who left Cyprus on Tuesday is expected to brief Annan on the latest developments that could lead to face-to-face talks between Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus President Rauf Denktas, and Greek Cypriot leader Glafkos Clerides before June. Feissel said before leaving the island that both leaders had provided him with several ideas as part of his package of "gestures of good will" to kick-start talks and pave the way for peace negotiations.
 PKK ACTIVE IN GERMANYAccording to a German intelligence service report, the terrorist PKK organization continues to operate and expand in Germany despite having been officially banned in 1993. "Despite measures by the police and the authorities to implement the ban, including numerous arrests of leaders, the PKK remained active" said the report. There were some 10,000 PKK members active in Germany at the end of 1996, compared with 8,900 in 1995, it was noted in the report. Most of the nearly half a million Kurds living in Germany were described as peaceful and law-abiding citizens. According to the report, PKK members continue to use threats and blackmail to extort money from Kurds living in Germany.
 $ 2 BILLION TURK-ISRAELI TRADE TARGETIt is reported that the present trade volume betweeen Turkey and Israel will increase four fold and reach $ 2 billion. During Israeli Foreign Minister David Levy's talks, the Israeli Foreign Trade Department stated that the trade volume of $450 million would increase by four fold in three years. According to the statement of Gabriela Kohen, Deputy Head of the Department, the ratification of the 1966 treaty signed by the two countries should facilitate commercial relations./Hurriyet/
 MESSAGE FROM PALESTINE ON ISRAELThe Palestinian Ambassador in Turkey Fuat Bin Mahmut Yasin has called on Turkey to use bilateral treaties with Israel on military and economic matters as an instrument to urge Israel to take back its decision to build new settlements in East Jerusalem. /Cumhuriyet/
 ANKARA CONDEMNS GREECE OVER CONVICTION OF ISKECE MUFTIThe Turkish Foreign Ministry late on Monday issued a statement condemning the sentencing of Islamic cleric Mehmet Emin Aga, the Iskece (Xanti) mufti, to eight months imprisonment by a Greek court. According to several agreements, the Turkish minority in Western Thrace has the right to elect their own mufti. However, Greece appointed its own mufti, despite the elected Aga and filed suits aginst Aga claiming he had usurped the rights of the mufti.
The Turkish Foreign Ministry statement said the decision ran contrary to freedom of belief. "We expect EU member Greece to renounce this attitude which defies both international agreements and the basic human rights of the Turkish minority in Western Thrace," it was stressed in the statement.
 WEU EXERTS PRESSURE ON GREECEThe Western European Union (WEU) is pressing Greece to lift sanctions blocking associate member Turkey's participation in WEU operations, the Anatolia news agency reported. The WEU member countries warned Greece once more at a session of the Union in Brussels on Tuesday but noted that they had observed positive signs indicating that Greece is softening on the issue.
 D-8 SUMMIT IN JUNEPrime minister Erbakan told reporters on Monday just before a D-8 coordination meeting that the group's summit meeting would be held in June and that 55 projects for cooperation will be discussed. He noted that representatives of the D-8 developing Islamic countries had met on March 13-14 in Antalya and had taken important steps for improving cooperation.
 DYP DEPUTY CENKCILER DIESLeading party member, DYP deputy for Bursa Abdulkadir Cenkciler, died yesterday evening in Bursa after undergoing treatment at the local Uludag University Hospital. Cenkciler last spoke with his party leader Tansu Ciller last Saturday. His departure will leave a gap in party ranks, and means too that DYP seats in parliament have dropped to 120. /All papers/
 UNREGISTERED TRADE WITH RUSSIA $ 11 BILLIONTHe volume of foreign trade between Turkey and Russia, estimated to be $4 billion according to official figures, nears $15 billion with unregistered trade.
According to information furnished by Turkey's Commercial Councillor in Russia, Tanzer Guven, unregistered trade amounting to $ 11 billion is realized through "suitcase trade", the construction sector, tourism and transportation./Hürriyet/
 APRIL SNOW CAUSES TRAFFIC SNARLS IN ANKARAUnexpected snowfall that began early Tuesday morning in Ankara caused massive traffic jams, the Anatolia news agency reported. Caught unawares, municipality road workers were unable to take the necessary measures in time, causing traffic to come to a standstill in many parts of the country. Meteorology officials announced that these weather conditions will continue for the next few days.
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