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Turkish Press Review, 99-02-08
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From: Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs <http://www.mfa.gov.tr>
Summary of the political and economic news in the Turkish press this morning
 DEMIREL: "THE NEW PARLIAMENT SHOULD WORK AS A CONSTITUENT ASSEMBLY"
 DEATH OF KING HUSSEIN SENDS WAVES OF SORROWNews of the death of King Hussein of Jordan sent waves of sorrow across Ankara. President Suleyman Demirel, Parliament Speaker Hikmet Cetin, Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit and Foreign Minister Ismail Cem expressed their deep sadness in messages they sent to their Jordanian counterparts, a Foreign Ministry statement said. The statement also said Demirel, accompanied by Foreign Minister Cem will attend the funeral ceremony of King Hussein. Demirel will leave for Amman early today and return home the same evening. /All papers/
 DEMIREL: "THE NEW PARLIAMENT SHOULD WORK AS A CONSTITUENT ASSEMBLY"President Suleyman Demirel said that at the end of the 18 April General Elections to be held in line with today's elections system a "patched Parliament" would be established. And therefore he added, it would be difficult to expect stability in the Administration. The President stressed that if the new Parliament worked as a Constituent Assembly and reformed the system then a "working democracy" would be easily established in Turkey. /Milliyet/
 ECEVIT: "ELECTIONS TO BE HELD ON 18 APRIL"Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit said that there would not be enough time to approve a decision concerning the two-tier General Election. He added that elections would be held in line with legal procedures and in a democratic environment. Ecevit noted that Parliament was concentrating on the issue of the Banking Law before the elections. /Turkiye/
 RIFT DEEPENS WITHIN PKKThe rift within the PKK terrorist organization is deepening, following their leader Abdullah Ocalan's endless journey to find refuge. The outlawed 'Union of Free Women' (YAJK), a branch of the PKK, is reportedly making efforts to form a new organization. Women acting within the YAJK criticized the PKK for excluding and patronizing them by giving them a secondary role. As a result of these criticisms, they have started to try to raise support for a breakaway organization.
It was reported that these disputes came to light following Ocalan's departure from Syria. Ocalan, who is said to be uneasy over the rift within the organization, is unable to get into contact with the PKK, reportedly one of the leading figures behind the partition within the organization. /All papers/
 OCALAN INSISTING ON GREECEGreek weekly To Vima writes that the leader of the terrorist PKK organization Abdullah Ocalan has been to Greece twice. The newspaper claimed that following his departure from Syria, the PKK leader had planned to stay in Crete using a false passport belonging to a Dutch M.P., with the help of some Greek politicians and PKK aides in the country, but had to leave the country following the objection of the Greek Prime Minister Kostas Simitis. The weekly also wrote that Ocalan, after leaving Rome, came to Greece without the knowledge of Prime Minister Simitis and Defence Minister Akis Djohacopoulos and stayed in Athens for two days. Despite the influential circles supporting Ocalan, when Simitis objected the PKK leader had leave Greece./Cumhuriyet/
 DUTCH BREAKTHROUGH TO INVITE OCALANDuring the annual Green Left Party Congress held last weekend in Rotterdam, Holland, the party's youth organization submitted a proposal to launch initiatives to invite the PKK leader, Abdullah Ocalan, to their country. The motion, submitted to the Congress Chairman, was subject to the objections of Turkish delegates. When the majority of the other delegates also rejected the motion, it proposal was withdrawn without being put to the vote. The proposal suggested that Ocalan be invited to Holland, granted political asylum and the issue be brought to the International Tribunal. /Sabah/
 PKK HAS BEGUN TO KIDNAP CHILDREN IN EUROPEThe PKK, which has remained leaderless and been exhausted since no country is willing to accept Abdullah Ocalan, has begun to kidnap Turkish children in Europe. According to the German weekly `Focus', a 16-year Turkish youth, living in Meschede in the Sauerland region, found refuge with the German police last week after he had escaped from his PKK-militant kidnappers. Attorney Gunter Ruter, cited in the news, said, "This young man, kidnapped by the PKK, was snatched in order to be trained to participate in terrorist activities." Meanwhile, it is claimed that both the police and other security forces are continuing to search for two Turkish girls aged 15 and 17, whom the police suspect have been kidnapped by the PKK. /Aksam/
 ECEVIT-KIVRIKOGLU MEETINGPrime Minister Bulent Ecevit and the Chief of General Staff, Huseyin Kivrikoglu, will hold a meeting today. During the meeting, issues such as domestic and foreign security problems and the modernization of the Turkish Armed Forces will be discussed. /Sabah/
 CROATIAN PRESIDENT DUE IN TURKEYFranjo Tudjman, Croatian President, will come to Turkey on Wednesday as the official guest of President Suleyman Demirel. A Foreign Ministry statement said that Tudjman, accompanied by a delegation composed of high-level officials, will visit Turkey on February 10-12, 1999, the Anatolia news agency reports.
 CEM VISITS TRNCForeign Minister Ismail Cem, who visited the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) on Saturday, was received by President Rauf Denktas. Cem said that the aim of the visit was to congratulate the newly established government in the TRNC and to hold contacts on the Cyprus issue, the Anatolia news agency reports.
 THE PRICE OF INCIRLIK MAY BE TOO COSTLYIraq issued a warning to Turkey, Kuwait and Saudi Arabia, stating that the price of allowing the US and England to use their land may be too high. In an editorial published in El Qadisiye newspaper, it was written,"The price of allowing the violation of the air space of an Arab and Muslim country, killing its innocent children, may be too costly. We are calling on the leaders of these countries: You will be sorry if you carry on harming the Iraqi people, and playing with fire." In the editorial Turkey was peremptorily called on not to permit the US to use Incirlik base for carrying out attacks on Iraq,. In addition it was stated that on the part of Turkey this policy would backfire and have unwanted consequences. /Cumhuriyet/
 CALL TO TURKEYAt the end of the 13th General Congress of the Christian Democrats in Brussels, Turkey was urged to complete her economic and political reforms as soon as possible in order to strengthen her relations with the European Union (EU). They also wanted the Cyprus problem to be solved along the guidelines of United Nations (UN) decisions. Diplomatic circles said that Christian Democrats wanted the votes of Turkish citizens living in EU countries. /Turkiye/
 EUROPE IS AT A LOSSTurkey, which is a European Council member, has been criticized for 30 years. Some of these criticisms are deliberate and some of them stem from ignorance about Turkey. Europe is today at a loss concerning Turkey; it can neither accept Turkey as she is nor exclude her. When Turkey is excluded, Europe will lose her power. With her trade, democratic institutions and citizens living in Europe, Turkey has already entered into the European Union. After the acceptance of Turkey's full membership, free movement and financial aid issues will come on the agenda of the EU and so it evades the legimizing of this membership. Turkey's dynamic, young population potential and economic potential terrify EU countries. /Turkiye/
 KUTAN VOICES ANGERThe Chairman of the Virtue Party (FP), Recai Kutan, said: "If our people vote for certain persons and some others declare in public that they reject the vote of the people, then they will be violating the Constitution and they will have to face the consequences". Kutan noted the people have decided to bring his party to power. "We will see an explosion in the number of our votes" he told party supporters during a conference.
He also said he was deeply offended by remarks made by President Suleyman Demirel during a recent interview in which the Head of State said there are two faces to the FP, 'one that is in the open and the other that is hidden'. Translated in political terms, this means the FP is pretending to support secularism but in fact wants a religious order. /All papers/
 CILLER WILL FIGHT ANTICHRISTThe True Path Party (DYP) leader Tansu Ciller started her campaign for the forthcoming elections in April, calling the party members to "struggle against the antichrists" in a meeting held in Ankara yesterday. /Hurriyet/
 DYP NAMES HALIL SIVGIN AS CANDIDATE FOR ANKARA MAYORTrue Path Party (DYP) Leader Tansu Ciller named Halil Sivgin as her party's candidate for the post of mayor of Ankara at a press conference at Ankara's Ataturk Sports Centre yesterday. Sivgin was one of the founders of the Motherland Party (ANAP) and served as ANAP Health Minister. He resigned from the party when Mesut Yilmaz became the ANAP leader. /All papers/
 CHP COURTING THE FEMALE VOTESeveral thousand members of the Republican People's Party (CHP) convened in the Lutfi Kirdar Exhibition Centre yesterday to affirm its commitment to support women. CHP Leader Deniz Baykal stressed the importance of women in Turkish society and how democracy cannot be achieved without attracting women into politics. In a 12-point programme, the CHP asserted how important it felt its relations with women were. The 12 points included politics, local administrations, education, the economy, health, the media, violence, the law including the law dealing with family relations, organizations, women in outlying areas, female children and special women's groups. /All papers/
 DTP QUOTA FOR THE DISABLEDMuhtar Mahramli, the General Secretary of the Democratic Turkey Party (DTP), announced that they had assigned a quota for disabled Parliamentary candidates both the general elections, as well as for Mayorships and provincial assemblies. Mahramli said, "This is not a showpiece decision. We will evaluate disabled candidates as far as possible." /Aksam/
 LA STAMPA PRAISES ATATURKLa Stampa, a leading Italian newspaper, praised Ataturk, the founder of the Turkish Republic, in a full-page article in their "Leaders of the Century" series. The newspaper emphasized the incredible role played by Ataturk in the making of modern Turkish society, with special reference to his foundation of the first secular state in the Islamic world and his enactment of modern civilized laws. The article highly commended the reforms of Ataturk to its readers, describing him as the "most perfect of the giant figures of the century". /Hurriyet/
 ECONOMIC AND SOCIAL COUNCIL MEETS TODAYThe Economic and Social Council (ESK) will meet today under the Chairmanship of Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit. It was declared last week that the main theme of the meeting would be the measures to be taken to reduce real interest rates to reasonable levels in compliance with inflation. Other topics on the agenda of the Council are balanced domestic borrowing, the negative impact of the global crisis on employment, the protection of the competitiveness of the Turkish economy, and the prevention of mass unemployment. In this respect, Bayram Meral, the leader of the Turk-Is Workers' Union, declared that their priority in the meeting would be the recent redundancies in certain sectors. Similarly, Ridvan Budak, the leader of the DISK (Revolutionary Workers' Unions Confederation), will demand that the government prevent redundancies, ensure employment security and enact unemployment insurance. /Aksam/
 IMF POSITIVE ON TURKEYAn IMF delegation headed by Turkey-Desk Chief, Martin Hardy, which has been busy contacting influential people in Turkey for nearly two weeks, is expected to prepare a 'positive' report on Turkey. The delegation, which arrived in Turkey on January 27, held a series of meetings with Turkish economic bureaucrats and representatives from the private sector, and discussed the achievements of the 18-month Staff Monitoring Agreement signed last July as of the end of 1998 and the economic programme to be followed in 1999. Martin Hardy pointed out during the meetings that initiatives concerning the Social Security Reform should be completed without any further delay. /Aksam/
 WORLD BANK DELEGATION TO VISIT TURKEYWhile an IMF delegation headed by Turkey-Desk Chief Martin Hardy, which has been holding meetings along the guidelines of the Staff Monitoring Agreement for nearly two weeks, is leaving Turkey today, a delegation from the World Bank will arrive in Ankara today to dicuss a $300 million loan. Initially, high-priority sub-sectors will be determined and this information will be conveyed to the World Bank. /Sabah/
 PRODUCTION INCREASEWhile the total production increase was 2.8 % in the industrial sector last year, the highest increase was 156 % in angle irons on the basis of the number of products. According to the State Institute of Statistics (DIE), the production of paraffin oil increased by 96 %. In 1998 among durable consumer goods, the television production increased by 24.4 %, that of videos by 40.7 % and that of refrigerators by 4.5 %. /Aksam/
 TREASURY BONDSThe Treasury will start its sale of 134-day bonds to the public tomorrow. The bonds will be on sale for three days and will be re-paid on June 23, 1999. The lowest nominal value of the bonds will cost TL 10 million. /Aksam/
 SIKORSKY GETS HELICOPTER TENDERAn agreement was signed between the US Sikorsky company and National Defence Ministry for the purchase of 50 helicopters to meet the needs of Turkish Armed Forces. A statement by the General Secretariat of the National Defence Minister said that signatories of the agreement which was signed on February 3 was Gen.Sener Eruygur, one behalf of Defence Minister and Gene Buckley, Chairman of Sikorsky company, the Anatolia news agency reports.
 TRANSPARENT PERIOD IN IMPORTSThe 1999 Imports Regime, prepared in line with Turkey's commitments within both EU and international treaties, was promulgated in the re-issue of the Official Gazette yesterday. According to the 1999 regime published in five lists, of all the particular taxes imposed on products by the EU, under the European Free Trade Agreement (EFTA), the least developed countries, and the Free Trade Agreement (FTA) countries can be seen on a single page. This new practice will ensure a remarkable transparency in the imports regime. Meanwhile, protection rates and customs duty on certain products have been reduced with this years' regime. It is stated that Turkey will lower its rate of protection on sensitive products down to the level of the Common Customs Tariff by 2001. /Hurriyet/
 TURCO-CHINESE COOPERATIONChinese Republic's Jinan city delegation signed agreements with Izmit Municipality and Izmit Chamber of Commerce foreseeing cooperation in social, cultural and economic fields. Izmit Mayor, Sefa Sirmen, expressed readiness to make every kind of cooperation with Jinan, the Anatolia news agency reports.
 TURCO-RUSSIAN TRADE RELATIONSAn evaluation meeting will take place on February 9 in Ankara in an effort to improve economic and trade relations between Turkey and Russia. Nabi Sensoy, Turkey's Ambassador to Moscow, will also participate in the meeting which will be chaired by Mithat Balkan, Foreign Ministry Undersecretary, the Anatolia news agency reports.
 $25 MILLION IN LOANSThe Council of Ministers has approved an agreement on a $24.970 million loan, provided by the Social Development Fund of the European Council, to finance various projects which are in progress. The agreement was published in yesterday's issue of the Official Gazette. According to the agreement signed between Turkey and the Social Development Fund, a $10 million-portion of the loan will be used to establish a new town in Istanbul-Beylikduzu; $1.970 million will be used to construct water purification facilities in Gaziantep; $10 million of the loan will be used to invest in health facilities at Baskent University and the remaining $3 million will be used to purchase equipment for Erciyes University Hospital. An annual 5.553 % interest rate will be applied and the annual repayment of the loan will begin in six years' time. /Sabah/
 OIL IN EASTIn the Kayayolu-3 well opened in Diyarbakir by the Turkish Petroleum Board (TPAO), oil has been found at a depth of 2,700 metres. The American Arco company drilled the same well 20 years ago and could not find oil. Turkish engineers pointed out that good-quality oil was known to be in Kayayolu and assertively continued with their exploration. As a result of these efforts, oil was found in the well two days ago. It is reported that the daily production output will be 1,000 barrels. /Sabah/
 "TURKEY IS GOOD AT GLOBALIZATION"Prof. Coskun C. Aktan, from the Nineth of September University in Izmir, following the completion, of his survey, which was dependet on the data supplied by both the World Bank and the World Trade Organization, said that Turkey came sixth in the Global Economic Integration ranking (GEI) among developing countries in the world. Aktan added that Turkey was successful in attracting foreign capital. /Turkiye/
 INCREASE IN TURKEY'S TEXTILE EXPORTAccording to the Economic Research and Evaluation General Directorate, part of the Foreign Trade Undersecretariat, Turkey's agricultural exports increased 65 percent between 1980-1996 within world trade. Machine and vehicle exports reached 38 percent, increasing by nine percent, and textile exports reached 38 percent, an increase of 21 percent within the same period of time. /Turkiye/
 THY RANKS SEVENTHTurkish Airlines (THY) have ranked seventh among highly-qualified international airlines, according to the ITN international tourism magazine published in the US. The magazine noted that THY flights from New York to Istanbul were hassle-free and added that Turkish aircraft used for domestic flights were all new, the Anatolia news agency reports.
 FIRST SUGAR-REFINING PLANT BY FOREIGNERSThe construction of the first sugar-refining plant supported by foreign capital will begin in April in Turkey. Its construction will be undertaken by a consortium consisting of Turkish MB and French UNION firms. The consortium will construct its complex in Sultahan, Aksaray. The construction will be completed within 18 months. The refining plant will provide employment for 500 people and produce 1,500 tonnes of sugar every day. /Aksam/
 AYSE BOTAN BERKER, FITCH IBCA REPRESENTATIVEAyse Botan Berker has been assigned as the Turkish Representative of Fitch IBCA, one of the leading international rating institutions. Officials noted that investors in the financial world in London were becoming more interested in obtaining information concerning Turkish banks and institutions. Berker graduated from the Business Administration Department of the Middle East Technical University. /Aksam/
 PROTOCOL SIGNED BETWEEN TRABZON AND RESTA protocol was signed to broaden social, commercial and cultural cooperation between the northern Turkish city of Trabzon and the Iranian city of Rest. During the ceremony organized in Rest, in Iran's Dilan state, the mayors of the two cities, Asim Aykan of Trabzon and Rahmet Hamidi of Rest, agreed that cooperation in the tourism, industry and trade sectors, as well as cooperation between the free trade zones, should be broadened, the Anatolia news agency reports. The trade of agricultural products, development of tea production technology and the formation of a relationship between the two cities' trade organizations were also outlined in the protocol.
 MANCO'S NAME TO REMAIN FOR FUTURE GENERATIONSThe name of the much-loved pop singer Baris Manco, who died one week ago, will be given to two streets, one boulevard, two roads, five parks, two children's towns, two youth centres, one bridge and one cultural centre acroos Turkey. In addition to that a train, called the 'Baris Manco and the Kurtalan Express' (name of his group) will tour Europe in April. Various municipalities of Hatay, Gaziantep, Bursa, Kayseri, Canakkale and the Kecioren district of Ankara have decided to give his name to various gathering areas. Forest Minister Arif Sezer stated that in order to commemorate Manco they will establish 'memoir forests' in different areas of Turkey. /All papers/
 WORLD RECOGNIZES HAMIDIYEHamidiye Spring Waters Corp. was admitted to the membership of the International Bottled Water Association (IBWA), becoming the first Turkish firm to be accepted as a member of the Association. The US-based IBWA has 1200 members including distributers and producers. /Aksam/
 ARZU BAYRAK WINS GOLD MEDALArzu Bayrak, a Turkish judoka, won gold medal in 57 kg at the International Sofia Judo Tournament on Saturday. The tournament was organized with the participation of sportsmen from 20 countries, the Anatolia news agency reports.
 FROM THE COLUMNS ... FROM THE COLUMNS ... FROM THE COLUMNS
 THE KING DIED - BY SEDAT SERTOGLU (SABAH)Sedat Sertoglu, a columnist in the `Sabah' daily, reflects on the death of King Huseyin, with particular emphasis on the role played by him in the Middle East and the possible developments in the region following his death. Sertoglu writes:
"Alongside his merits, and in spite of the fact that he was the leader who reigned in the Middle East for the longest period, King Huseyin made certain strategic errors as well. He entered into war with Israel and lost Jerusalem and the West Bank. Perhaps not militarily but politically, he backed Iraq during the Gulf War. Later on, he pursued the path of peaceful politics with Israel and signed the agreement. In this way, he became a "guarantor" in the peace meetings between Israel and Palestine.
King Huseyin managed to survey all the political equations in the Middle East. As he knew that everything could change in a while in this region, he was quite careful to estimate the consequences of the transitions in advance.
What will happen now? I have discussed this issue with some specialists on the region and Jordan. We assessed what the rhetoric of "The King is dead, long live the King!" may bring to the region.
We observed that Jordan is under the protection of the US and Israel against any possible attacks by a radical Arabic country.
We observed that the new King supports the views of his father. That is to say, he stands for peace; he is not an adventurer.
We observed that it is always wrong to invest in a single figure in the Middle East.
We observed that King Huseyin left a country where the GNP per capita is just $1500.
Last but not least, we observed that under the youngest leader in the Middle East, Jordan will continue to be one of the key countries in the Peace Process in the region, both politically and geographically."
 DEMIREL'S ANSWER - BY FIKRET BILA (MILLIYET)Milliyet columnist, Fikret Bila, said in today's article that Virtue Party (FP) leader Recai Kutan was wounded by President Suleyman Demirel's recent statements about his Party. Bila asked the President for his ideas concerning Kutan's touchiness. Bila quoted Demirel's words, "I have no problem with anybody. I am above political parties. However, to protect the democratic secular legal state of the Turkish Republic is among my duties. Political parties are also within this system; they can only survive within this system."
Fikret Bila added that President Suleyman Demirel stressed that no one should be sensitive to his request that they should be devoted to the Constitution; on the contrary, everybody should support him. /Milliyet/
 ECONOMY VERSUS POLITICS - BY MUSTAFA BALBAY (CUMHURIYET)In his column in 'Cumhuriyet' Mustafa Balbay examines the relation between economy and politics. A summary of his column is as follows:
"We have entered a week when economy and politics will be competing. There are four points on the economic agenda and they are, the meeting of the Economic Social Council (ESK) today, the departure of the IMF delegation, the arrival of the World Bank delegation, and the fate of the Banking Law....The Economic Social Council can also be described as the arena of Prime Minister Ecevit's political decisions; as the atmosphere emanating from this meeting will demonstrate how the social organizations view the Ecevit government. It seeems as if the Prime Minister wants to establish a policy of balance between all sectors. He will support the demands of the employers to avoid the dismissal of workers and balance the trade unions by giving priority to employment guarantees.
The IMF delegation is leaving Turkey this weekend. It seems they have not graded Turkey positively. They frequently repeated that structural reforms were necessary. It is hard for the present government to carry out these demands...... In economic and government circles all hopes are not tied to the IMF. A delegation from the World Bank will arrive but this is rather to support exports... The fate of the Banking Law is pinned on the calculations of the party leaders. If Parliament convenes and passes this law we will congratulate them."
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