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Turkish Press Review, 99-02-15

Turkish Press Review Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs <http://www.mfa.gov.tr>

15.02.99

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


CONTENTS

  • [01] FROM THE COLUMNS...FROM THE COLUMNS...FROM THE COLUMNS...
  • [02] TARIK AZIZ IN TURKEY
  • [03] BURNS: "WASHINGTON SUPPORTS S-300S DEPLOYMENT ON CRETE"
  • [04] ULUGBAY TO VISIT US
  • [05] LINN TO VISIT TURKEY
  • [06] OCALAN IN AFRICA
  • [07] 'OHAL MAY BE LIFTED'
  • [08] OPERATIONS ON ZORKUN PLATEAU
  • [09] PKK SUPPORTS HADEP
  • [10] MEASURES AGAINST PKK ALONG THE BORDER
  • [11] PRIVATIZATION ADMINISTRATION CONTINUES ITS EFFORTS
  • [12] PRIVATIZATION SUPPORTS HARBOURS
  • [13] MAJOR HIGHWAY AND ROADLINK PROJECTS
  • [14] THY LAUNCHES VIP SERVICES
  • [15] SECURITY NETWORK FOR STRAITS
  • [16] TURK-IS AND GOVERNMENT MEET
  • [17] ANAP LEADING FIGURES LOSE IN PRE-ELECTION VOTE
  • [18] NASREDDIN HODJA BOOKS IN GERMANY
  • [19] TURKEY ASKS FOR THE RETURN OF HER SILVER COINS FROM THE US
  • [20] GERMANY LOOKS FOR WORK FOR TURKS IN TURKEY
  • [21] "THE FUTURE OF THE TURKISH ECONOMY"
  • [22] NEW TURKISH EMBASSY IN WASHINGTON
  • [23] "TURKEY: A FUTURE IN EUROPE"
  • [24] POSITIVE ATMOSPHERE IN ENERGY
  • [25] FROM THE COLUMNS...FROM THE COLUMNS...FROM THE COLUMNS...
  • [26] INVESTOR RETURNS TO THE MARKET -BY HAYRI CETINKAYA (HURRIYET)
  • [27] IRAQ AND TURKEY -BY COSKUN KIRCA (SABAH)

  • [01] FROM THE COLUMNS...FROM THE COLUMNS...FROM THE COLUMNS...

    [02] TARIK AZIZ IN TURKEY

    Iraq's Vice President Tarik Aziz arrived in Ankara yesterday for talks that Turkey hopes will end a spate of confrontations between Iraq and the US. Aziz, who is scheduled to meet Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit and other officials on Monday, has said he would voice Iraq's displeasure with Turkey for allowing its southern Incirlik Air Base to be used by US warplanes. Turkey, for its part, was expected to urge Iraq to refrain from 'provoking the US' and comply with the relevant UN resolutions.

    Tarik Aziz will also meet Foreign Minister Ismail Cem and Chief of General Staff Gen.Huseyin Kivrikoglu today. It is reported that Aziz will return to his country on Tuesday following a press conference in Ankara. Speaking to reporters, Cem said: "We will greet Aziz with the goodwill and warmth befitting a host. However, everyone should know that a visit cannot alter our policies". Cem added that Turkey's foreign policy was well-balanced and Turkey was a country respected in her region. Turkey hoped that the visit, Cem noted, would produce positive results on both sides. /Turkiye/

    [03] BURNS: "WASHINGTON SUPPORTS S-300S DEPLOYMENT ON CRETE"

    The US Ambassador to Athens, Nicholas Burns, has said that Washington has no objections to the S-300 missiles' deployment on the Greek island of Crete instead of on Cyprus. In remarks to the Greek weekly 'To Vima', Burns said that Washington was satisfied with the Greek-Greek Cypriot decision to install the S-300s on Crete, and that their presence on the Greek island would not pose any problems from the US point of view. 'To Vima' said that Washington had masterminded the plan to deploy the S-300s on Crete, and it disapproved of Turkey's reaction regarding the missiles' new destination.

    On Monday, the Defence Ministers of Greece and Southern Cyprus are expected to arrive in Moscow to discuss the deployment of the S-300s with Russian military officials. /All papers/

    [04] ULUGBAY TO VISIT US

    Meetings to organize financial assistance to Turkey by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) will start at the end of February. Deputy Prime Minister and State Minister responsible for the economy, Hikmet Ulugbay, will go to the US for meetings concerning the IMF's support for Turkey. Finance Minister Zekeriya Temizel said that the positive statement issued by the IMF delegation last week was an achievement for Turkey. Temizel added: "The IMF is an important international institution. Positive comments by such an important institution affected both domestic and foreign investors and interest rates fell by 20 points". /Milliyet/

    [05] LINN TO VISIT TURKEY

    After taking her leave of a delegation from the IMF and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) last week, Ankara will play host to an important guest this week. The Deputy Chairman of the World Bank responsible for Europe and Central Asia, Johannes Linn, will arrive in Ankara tomorrow and meet Turkish Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit. Linn, who will attend meetings on the current situation of various programmes and projects implemented between the World Bank and Turkey, will also finalize the deal concerning the $300 million loan to be provided by the World Bank to Turkey in order to finance and support her exports. Delegations from both the Japanese Credit Rating Institution (JCR) and Overseas Economic Cooperation and Investment Institution (OECF) will also visit Ankara this week to determine Turkey's credit rate. /Milliyet/

    [06] OCALAN IN AFRICA

    In an article in the newspaper 'Il Messaggero' published in Italy yesterday, it was claimed that US intelligence services have determined that the PKK leader Abdullah Ocalan is somewhere between Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania. However, Ocalan urged Russia, Greece, Italy, Germany and France to grant him political ayslum during a broadcast on MED TV.

    In a statement faxed to a number of international news agencies on Saturday night, Ocalan had said that his concern for his safety was 'urgent'. He stated that he had asked Russia, Greece and other European countries to grant him asylum. In his request for political asylum in Greece, Ocalan had said: "I would like the Greek government to consider my request for asylum and open its doors to me". Ocalan asked the Greek government to ensure his safety until his application for asylum has been processed. He also stated that the French and German governments should review their positions on him. /Milliyet/

    [07] 'OHAL MAY BE LIFTED'

    The Governor of the Emergency Rule Region (OHAL), Aydin Aslan, made a statement in Diyarbakir yesterday remarking that terrorist activities in the Eastern and Southeastern regions of Turkey had been completely halted, adding that emergency rule could be lifted next year. Aslan also pointed out that activities by the illegal Hizbullah organization were as dangerous as those of the PKK. /Hurriyet/

    [08] OPERATIONS ON ZORKUN PLATEAU

    Planned attacks against the PKK terrorist organization are on-going on Zorkun Plateau near Osmaniye, the Anatolia news agency reports. Osmaniye Governor Umit Karahan made a statement yesterday and said it had been determined one month ago that there were 27 PKK members in the Zorkun Plateau area and added that security forces were in search of these terrorists. Karahan pointed out that both land and air operations were in progress.

    [09] PKK SUPPORTS HADEP

    The outlawed PKK terrorist organization held its sixth Congress at the end of January in Gadar Valley on the Iran-Iraq border. At the end of the Congress it was decided to support the Peoples' Democracy Party (HADEP) in the 18 April elections. Other decisions reached at the meeting are as follows; Abdullah Ocalan was reaffirmed as their leader; the power wielded by the organization is to be protected; relations with the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) led by Mesut Barzani are to be improved; new attacks are to be planned.

    On the other hand, it was revealed that almost 200 PKK members had joined the KDP in Northern Iraq due to the uneasiness in the organization which followed Ocalan's exclusion from Europe. /Sabah/

    [10] MEASURES AGAINST PKK ALONG THE BORDER

    The Turkish Armed Forces reinforced its forces in Silop, Habur and Cizre in the Southeast region after a tip-off that six thousand PKK terrorists, who had escaped from Syria, were sheltering in Iraq. Turkish security forces entered Northern Iraq yesterday through the Habur border gate. The gate was not only busy due to the activity of the security forces but also due to the arrival of Tarik Aziz, the right hand-man Aid of the Iraqi President. /Sabah/

    [11] PRIVATIZATION ADMINISTRATION CONTINUES ITS EFFORTS

    The Privatization Administration Board is continuing with its intensive programme. A tender to transfer Atik Pashas Water-Side Residences for a term of 49 years, one of the most important projects implemented by the Privatization Administration, will be completed this week. The Head of the Privatization Administration, Ugur Bayar, said yesterday that all tenders regarding institutions undergoing privatization were in progress. /Milliyet/

    [12] PRIVATIZATION SUPPORTS HARBOURS

    Antalya, Tekirdag, Giresun, Ordu, Sinop and Hopa Harbours have all increased the amount of cargo handled on a daily basis following their privatization. It was reported that the number of personnel employed in both Rize and Hope Harbours increased by almost 50 percent and the daily cargo tonnage handled attained 2,000 tons from 500 tons prior to privatization. Head of Antalya Harbour Gunduz Yalman said that the 400 ton capacity of the harbour had been increased to 600 tons. Yalman added that they aimed to improve Sinop, Ordu and Giresun Harbours. /TUrkiye/

    [13] MAJOR HIGHWAY AND ROADLINK PROJECTS

    The General Directorate of Highways is planning to complete the construction of six highway projects in 1999. An official from the General Directorate of Highways said that the Kinali-Sakarya, Tarsus-Mersin, TAG, Toprakkale-Iskenderun, Izmir-Urla, and Izmir-Aydin highways are planned to be completed within the year. In 1999, many projects, including the construction of the links across the Bosphorus and the Dardanelles, will be initiated.

    In connection with this project, the construction of the 336-kilometre Orhangazi-Bursa-Balikesir-Izmir highway, to be financed by foreign loans, will be started as well. The General Directorate of Highways will spend TL 686.2 trillion and State Funds will contribute TL 356 trillion to the aforementioned projects. /All papers/

    [14] THY LAUNCHES VIP SERVICES

    Turkish Airlines (THY) has announced the purchase of a US-made Bell-430 helicopter to be used for VIP services. THY General Director Yusuf Bolayirli told the Anatolia news agency that they had initiated their VIP project following intense demand by businessmen.

    He added that they believe that this will be a lucrative business. The Bell-430 helicopter will be based in Istanbul and it has cost the company $4.5 million. The President and the Prime Minister will have priority in using the helicopter.

    [15] SECURITY NETWORK FOR STRAITS

    Construction bids for a fully-automatic computerized traffic control system for ships will be accepted beginning on February 26. The radar-based traffic control system is intended to ensure the security of ships travelling in the Bosphorus and the Dardanelles Straits. Construction of the system is expected to cost $40 million, and so far, 10 companies have expressed an interest in entering the bidding, the Anatolia news agency reports.

    [16] TURK-IS AND GOVERNMENT MEET

    Government representatives and administrators from the Confederation of Turkish Labour Unions (Turk-Is) are expected to come together for a second time in the nexct few days to discuss the public sector collective bargaining talks. Sukru Sina Gurel, State Minister responsible for public sector collective bargaining, said that his Ministry is on track to put forward the government's counterproposal to 480,000 public workers.

    Turk-Is Chairman Bayram Meral said that the labour representatives, on the other side, want to conclude the collective bargaining talks before the elections, if possible within the month, and he conveyed this wish to both Gurel and Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit. /All papers/

    [17] ANAP LEADING FIGURES LOSE IN PRE-ELECTION VOTE

    Some of the Motherland Party's (ANAP) top names lost in a pre-election vote for parliamentary candidates conducted among party members on Saturday in Lutfi Kirdar Congress Centre. Such well-known figures as Gunes Taner, Sadan Tuzcu, Bulent Akarcali and Bahattin Yucel were knocked out of the running following voting for 83 potential candidates. /All papers/

    [18] NASREDDIN HODJA BOOKS IN GERMANY

    During a carnival parade in Frankfurt, Germany, there were small models of the well-known Turkish wit and humorist, Nasreddin Hodja, which attracted great interest from the Germans. Turkish girls wearing national clothes distributed Turkish Delight and the books of Nasreddin Hodja including his anecdotes to the spectators. /Aksam/

    [19] TURKEY ASKS FOR THE RETURN OF HER SILVER COINS FROM THE US

    A court case concerning the custody of almost 2000 silver coins which were smuggled in 1984 from Elmali, Antalya to the US will start on 8 March in Boston. It is claimed that the present value of the coins, which are called the "Treasury of the Century", is over 30 million dollars. /CUmhuriyet/

    [20] GERMANY LOOKS FOR WORK FOR TURKS IN TURKEY

    The Vocational Skills, Experience and Return to Work Coordination Centre (KFR) and Federal Business Institution has established employment grants in some regions of Germany. The aim of the grants is to employ young Turkish people in both domestic and foreign companies in Turkey who have completed their professional education in Germany. Representatives of the Institution providing the grants said that the Turkish economy had been rapidly developing and that foreign investment has been on the increase in Turkey. "These investments are looking for qualified staff who are both university graduates and speak at least two languages. Most of the young Turkish people in Germany have these qualities, so we have decided to help them find jobs in their home country," said the Institution's representatives. /Cumhuriyet/

    [21] "THE FUTURE OF THE TURKISH ECONOMY"

    The Turkish Bankers' Union in London organized a seminar concerning the future of the Turkish economy last weekend. At the meeting it was stressed that Turkey was one of the most attractive countries among the emerging markets. It was also pointed out that foreign investors considered that the returns on investment in Turkey were very high but they preferred to wait for the results of 18 April elections before coming e to Turkey. Finally, it was stressed that instead of money in the short-term, there would be a flow of cash in the long-term into Turkey. /Sabah/

    [22] NEW TURKISH EMBASSY IN WASHINGTON

    The new building of the Turkish Embassy in Massachussetts Avenue in Washington will be opened on 23-24 April by President Suleyman Demirel, who will be in the US to attended a NATO summit. The construction of the building began in 1986 but it was halted in 1995 due to objections to the blue-print of the building. The construction of the Embassy cost 13 million dollars. /Sabah/

    [23] "TURKEY: A FUTURE IN EUROPE"

    "Turkiye" newspaper reported, depending for its news on the IHA news agency, that there would be a secret conference today in Wiston House, West Sussex, near London. During the four-day meeting, which will be closed to the press, Turco-Greek-EU relations, the Cyprus issue, terrorism, Turco-Israeli and Turco-Russian relations are going to be discussed. The Motherland Party MP (ANAP), Ilhan Kesici, Democratic Left Party (DSP) MP Firat Dayanikli, Prof. Dogu Ergil, Chairman of the Privatization Board, Ugur Bayar, Undersecretary of Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Faruk Laloglu, EU Former Representative, Cem Duna, Deputy Prime Minister of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus Mustafa Akinci and journalist Ferai Tinc will represent Turkey at the meeting. During the first day of the meeting Turkey's political, economic and international aims will be debated; in the second day terrorism and the Kurdish issue will be handled. Turco-Greek relations and the Cyprus issue, Turco-Isreali closeness and Turco-Russian relations will be topics on the agenda on the third day of the mini-summit and on the last day Turco-EU relations will be on the agenda. /Turkiye/

    [24] POSITIVE ATMOSPHERE IN ENERGY

    The Chairman of the Economic Analysis Department of the International Energy Agency (IEA), Dr. Fatih Birol, said that Turkey offered many advantages foreigners investing in energy. Birol noted that, as a developing country, energy consumption in Turkey had been increasing and she needed 4-5 million dollars-worth of investment in energy every year. He added that there was no opportunity to invest in energy in Europe whereas there was a great demand for energy in Turkey. /Turkiye/

    [25] FROM THE COLUMNS...FROM THE COLUMNS...FROM THE COLUMNS...

    [26] INVESTOR RETURNS TO THE MARKET -BY HAYRI CETINKAYA (HURRIYET)

    Columnist Hayri Cetinkaya analyzes the latest economic trends in his column in Hurriyet. A summary of his column is as follows:

    Morale is high on the markets. The Stock Market saw the beginnings of an upward trend as interest rates began to fall. The Istanbul Stock Exchange (IMKB), which belatedly caught up with the upward trend seen previously in foreign markets has exceeded 3,000 points for the first time since the slump last August. The IMKB which began the week on an upward trend due to statements that an agreement could be made with the IMF following the Elections, kept up this trend during the week due to successful foreign borrowing by the Treasury, the low rate of inflation, and the expectation of the acceptance in Parliament of the Banking Law.... However, as the Parliament entered a recess before the Banking Law could be passed this high morale has suffered a blow. This development not only affected the Stock Exchange but also the Bond Market. The rates went up by 4 to 5% on the bond market. However an injection of fresh money and purchases in general helped the market to maintain its upward trend. The increase in transactions on the IMKB, which was at its highest at 12.4% after a month, show that foreign investors are beginning to return to the market. /Hurriyet/

    [27] IRAQ AND TURKEY -BY COSKUN KIRCA (SABAH)

    Coskun Kirca in his column in Sabah looks into the relations between Turkey and Iraq. A summary of his column is as follows:

    Turkey wants Iraq to protect is territorial integrity as it does not want a Kurdish state to be founded in the region. Moreover,Turkey is also against the formation of a federal solution within Iraq. Whichever party may be in power in Iraq it has to follow policies in line with these aims. However, in addition to supporting the PKK, Saddam's relations with the West and in particular with the US are strained. Therefore, for Iraq to establish its unquestionable sovereignty in the North of the country, the ruling party in Baghdad should initiate reasonable relations with the West. The US wants to topple Saddam and if we oppose this wish, our relations with the US would be put under unnecessary pressure. The US does not want to launch a land operation against Iraq...Maybe it would be more suitable for the US to leave the oil for food embargo policy and direct the embargo only against imports which could lead to the development of Iraqi military power...At the moment, the US wants to keep Iraq under control and weaken its military strength. When we consider that we too cannot trust Saddam, we see that this policy is also in our interests. /Sabah/


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