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Turkish Press Review, 99-05-06

Turkish Press Review Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

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

06.05.99

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


CONTENTS

  • [01] FROM THE COLUMNS ... FROM THE COLUMNS ... FROM THE COLUMNS FROM CHIRAC TO DEMIREL: DO NOT GET DISENCHANTED WITH EUROPE -
  • [02] BY HASAN CEMAL (MILLIYET)
  • [03] DSP-MHP PREPARE FOR TOUGH COALITION BARGAINING
  • [04] KAVAKCI STILL ON THE AGENDA
  • [05] BERISHA: "TURKEY SHOULD IMPEL NATO TO CARRY OUT GROUND OPERATION"
  • [06] WEU SPRING MEETINGS TO OPEN IN BREMEN
  • [07] PKK AFTER OCALAN'S CAPTURE
  • [08] OCALAN'S LAWYERS TO TAKE CASE TO EUROPEAN COURT
  • [09] LIVING BOMB ALARM
  • [10] PKK KILLS NINE SECURITY OFFICIALS
  • [11] AUTHORITIES SAY TERRORIST INCIDENTS DECLINING
  • [12] PROTEST AGAINST 'DER SPIEGEL'
  • [13] TURKISH ARMENIAN PATRIARCH LAYS WREATH ON ATATURK'S MONUMENT
  • [14] $2 BILLION LOAN FROM WORLD BANK
  • [15] "TURKEY WILL CONTINUE ITS PRIVATIZATION PROGRAMME"
  • [16] IMKB IS HOPEFUL
  • [17] DINCMEN RESIGNS
  • [18] EXPORTS IN APRIL
  • [19] CENTRAL BANKS' SUMMIT
  • [20] NEW TURKSAT IN 2000
  • [21] NEW START IN URFA TUNNELS
  • [22] TURKEY'S DUES FROM LIBYA
  • [23] TURKISH SEAL ON THE 21ST CENTURY
  • [24] TUPRAS RAISES PROFITS SIGNIFICANTLY
  • [25] TOURIST FLOCK TO ANTALYA
  • [26] THY TO PEKING
  • [27] THY TO TIRANA
  • [28] GSD FACTORING RECORDS '98 PROFIT OF 315.8 BILLION TL
  • [29] RED CRESCENT BLOOD DONATION WEEK
  • [30] "WORLD MUSIC AWARD" FOR TARKAN
  • [31] LAST CUP OF THE CENTURY TO GALATASARAY
  • [32] FROM THE COLUMNS ... FROM THE COLUMNS ... FROM THE COLUMNS
  • [33] FROM CHIRAC TO DEMIREL: DO NOT GET DISENCHANTED WITH EUROPE - BY HASAN CEMAL (MILLIYET)
  • [34] TURKEY'S PLACE IN FOREIGN POLICY - BY ILTER TURKMEN (HURRIYET)

  • [01] FROM THE COLUMNS ... FROM THE COLUMNS ... FROM THE COLUMNS FROM CHIRAC TO DEMIREL: DO NOT GET DISENCHANTED WITH EUROPE -

    [02] BY HASAN CEMAL (MILLIYET)

    [03] DSP-MHP PREPARE FOR TOUGH COALITION BARGAINING

    Prime Minister-designate and incumbent Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit is concentrating on the possibility of the creation of a coalition government between his Democratic Left Party (DSP), the Nationalist Action Party (MHP) and the Motherland Party (ANAP). Coalition talks between the DSP and the MHP are expected to concentrate on which party will hold the post of the Speaker of Parliament and run Interior, Foreign, Defence, Education and Culture Ministries. ANAP prefers to remain silent 'for the time being'. /All papers/

    [04] KAVAKCI STILL ON THE AGENDA

    After protests in Parliament when she entered the General Assembly hall wearing her headscarf, the Virtue Party's (FP) Istanbul Deputy Merve Kavakci, is now facing an investigation by the State Security Court (DGM). Prosecutor Nuh Mete Yuksel yesterday called for an investigation into Kavakci to determine whether or not she is a member of an illegal organization.

    Meanwhile, 20 lawyers belonging to the Istanbul Bar Association joined the protests against Kavakci yesterday with a press conference in the Istanbul Justice Bar Chamber. In a statement delivered in the name of the Contemporary Lawyers' group under the slogan 'first principle', lawyer Musur Kaya Canpolat characterized Kavakci's action as a rebellion against the Republic's revolution. Kavakci's action also caused havoc among non-governmental organizations (NGOs). Leading women's organizations nationwide have been sending press releases to newspapers protesting against Kavakci's stand. /All papers/

    [05] BERISHA: "TURKEY SHOULD IMPEL NATO TO CARRY OUT GROUND OPERATION"

    Sali Berisha, the former President of Albania and the current Chairman of the Albanian Democratic Party, stated that NATO has to implement an operation of Kosovo by ground forces in order to prevent the genocide. Berisha said that following the start of NATO's air strikes in Yugoslavia, the Serbians have stepped-up an uncomparable massacre in Kosovo. Pointing out that he approves of NATO's air strikes, Berisha said, "However, Milosevic will not surrender unless NATO sends in ground troops. The longer the ground operation is delayed, the bitterer the massacre will be. Turkey can play a significant role in the resolution of the Kosovo question. She can persuade NATO of the inevitability of a ground operation. We are also thankful for Turkey's aid and President Demirel's visit to Albania. I am sure the NATO forces will eventually win. As a politician, I am striving to explain the vital necesssity of a ground operation to the international community." Reiterating his call to NATO to accept the UCK as an ally, Berisha claimed that the UCK may be used as initial attack troops in a possible ground operation. /Turkiye/

    [06] WEU SPRING MEETINGS TO OPEN IN BREMEN

    The Western European Union's (WEU) Ministerial Council's spring meetings will take place on May 10-11 in Bremen, Germany. A statement issued by the Foreign Ministry yesterday said that the Turkish delegation would include Defence Minister Hikmet Sami Turk, Turkey's WEU Ambassador Guner Oztek and representatives from the Turkish General Staff, Defence and Foreign Ministries. Delegates at the conference will be discussing new European security and defence matters in the wake of April's NATO Summit and defence policy issues concerning crisis management in Europe. /All papers/

    [07] PKK AFTER OCALAN'S CAPTURE

    According to the London-based International Strategic Research Institution (IISS), a serious level of disintegration cen be seen in both the political and military wings of the PKK. The recent report prepared by the IISS said: "There is proof that not only inside the military wing but also in ERNK, which is the PKK's political wing in Europe, there are important dispersals. Ocalan was not given political asylum in Europe and this showed that the West did not support him. Before Ocalan's capture, the PKK tried to reach its target through conducting terrorist activities in the Southeastern regions of Turkey; collecting money forcefully and earning money from drug smuggling in order to ensure their financial funding and infiltrating political parties and non-governmental organizations in Turkey in order to strengthen PKK propaganda. The absence of a leader in the PKK led the organization to a new congress; at the end of the Leadership Congress it was decided to restructure ERNK, to establish a political party in Northern Iraq and to accept a Marxist-Leninist ideology. The most important problem of the Leadership Council is to protect the unity of PKK without the leadership of Ocalan."

    The report added: "PKK violence in Europe after Ocalan's capture was limited to European support for the Kurds. Therefore, Ocalan's capture will really mean the true beginning of the Kurdish issue for Turkish authorities." /Milliyet/

    [08] OCALAN'S LAWYERS TO TAKE CASE TO EUROPEAN COURT

    The lawyers for the PKK Chief Abdullah Ocalan, saying he stands a slim chance of a fair trial in Turkey, will take their case to the Council of Europe's European Court of Human Rights. Ocalan is currently imprisoned on Imrali Island in the Marmara Sea. Ocalan is scheduled to stand trial on Imrali on charges of treason and the murder of 30,000 people.

    "Ocalan's trial has international dimensions. His trial will be international. The process has started. With its rights and wrongs, each state will be placed where it deserves to be", four of the 60 lawyers defending Ocalan declared during a news conference in Istanbul. "Ocalan will be tried in Turkey and also in Europe", they said in a written statement. They stated they would call all the international figures involved in Ocalan's flight from Syria last autumn to his final capture in Kenya in February, including the Prime Ministers of Italy, Greece and Turkey, as well as the heads of the intelligence services of a dozen different countries, to the stand at the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg, France. /All papers/

    [09] LIVING BOMB ALARM

    Following the capture of its chief, Abdullah Ocalan, and subsequent successful operations by security forces, the disillusioned terrorist PKK organization is now planning to use a number of its female militants as sucicide bombs in its outrageous actions. In a top secret investigation carried out by Turkish intelligence services, it has been revealed that the PKK has trained dozens of its female militants specifically to be used as 'living bombs' for sensational operations in metropolitan areas up until May 31, the day when Ocalan's trial will begin. It is reported that the photographs and identities of 13 militants have been determined by security forces. In this respect, increase security measures have been implemented and the police have intensified their efforts to capture these suicide bombers. /Turkiye/

    [10] PKK KILLS NINE SECURITY OFFICIALS

    Wide-ranging security operations launched in the districts of Nazimiye, Mazgirt and Pulumur (Tunceli) and in the districts of Yayladere and Kigi (Bingol) are still being undertaken. Members of the PKK terrorist organization yesterday attacked a group of Turkish soldiers patrolling near Gunesli Police Station in Yayladere along the Tunceli-Bingol border and killed nine security forces; four security officials were wounded. Security officials noted that mopping-up operations to root out nearly 40 terrorists were continuing in the region. /Aksam/

    [11] AUTHORITIES SAY TERRORIST INCIDENTS DECLINING

    The continuous crack-down by Turkish security forces against the PKK terrorist organization following the capture and imprisonment of its chief, Abdullah Ocalan, have reportedly resulted in a marked decline in the number of terrorist incidents. The Anatolia News Agency reported that the outlawed organization has been going through a leadership crisis in the absence of Ocalan. The PKK's logistic support has been almost completely cut off by the recent operations in Turkey's Southeast and in Northern Iraq. The authorities also said that security forces have neutralized a number of urban hideouts from which the terrorists directed suicide bomb attacks in metropolitan areas. They added that large caches of ammunition had been recovered during those operations.

    [12] PROTEST AGAINST 'DER SPIEGEL'

    Turkish associations working under the auspices of the German Turkish Society, an association based in Hamburg, Germany, have protested against Rudolf Augstein, the editor of the weekly 'Der Spiegel' magazine. It has been claimed that Augstein insulted the founder of the Republic of Turkey, Ataturk, in his article. Representatives of the Turkish associations laid a black wreath in front of the central building of 'Der Spiegel' magazine and condemned both the magazine and Augstein. /Aksam/

    [13] TURKISH ARMENIAN PATRIARCH LAYS WREATH ON ATATURK'S MONUMENT

    The Turkish Armenian Patriach celebrated the 700th anniversary of the Ottoman Empire and the 538th anniversary of the establishment of the Turkish Armenian Patriarchate by Fatih Sultan Mehmet. Celebrations started with the laying of a wreat at the foot of the Ataturk Monument in Taksim Square in Istanbul. Armenian Patriarch Mesrob Mutafyan said that this was the only example of a Muslim Sultan letting a Christian religious administration and leader be established on the lands under the Sultan's administration. /Hurriyet/

    [14] $2 BILLION LOAN FROM WORLD BANK

    Following deliberations between the World Bank and the Turkish Treasury, it has been resolved that the Bank would allocate a total loan of $2 billion over the three-year period between 1998-2000 for a number of projects. Those projects which were suggested by the Treasury and confirmed by the World Bank as worth supporting are mainly in the fields of education, infrastructural rehabilitation, housing, science, research and development and agriculture. Accordingly, in the energy sector, a $270 million loan has been granted to the TEAS (Turkish Electricity Production Corp.) in an agreement signed last year. In addition, for the `8-year Uninterrupted Education' project by the National Ministry of Education, an initial $300 million loan was allocated with another $300 million to be provided next year according to the agreement made with the World Bank. Meanwhile, it is reported that a $250 million loan will be supplied by the Bank to be used in the joint infrastructural rehabilitation project between the General Directorate of Highways, the State Water Works, the General Directorate of Rural Affairs and the Ministry of Forestry to compensate for last years' flood disaster in the Western Black Sea Region. /Turkiye/

    [15] "TURKEY WILL CONTINUE ITS PRIVATIZATION PROGRAMME"

    Chairman of the Privatization Administration Ugur Bayar said that Turkey would never abandon privatization but it should reform its legal structure. He added that international financial institutions also stressed that Turkey should complete its reforms of the legal aspects of privatization. Bayar noted that the privatization process would continue with public support, without causing any disturbance to the public, due to its political determination and stability. Stressing that Turkey had experience of privatization, Bayar noted that this experience showed that the legal structure, the transparency of the process and powerful governments were the conditions needed for privatization. /Sabah/

    [16] IMKB IS HOPEFUL

    The Istanbul Stock Exchange (IMKB) is hopeful concerning both the establishment of a new government and meetings between International Monetary Fund (IMF) and Turkish officials. As a result of this positive atmosphere, the National 100-Index reached 5,580 points, an increase of 128.52 points. Macro-level investors and foreign buyers made their mark on yesterday's performance. /Hurriyet/

    [17] DINCMEN RESIGNS

    Treasury Undersecretary Yener Dincmen began pre-retirement formalities yesterday, the Anatolia News Agency reports. Dincmen was assigned to the post of Treasury Undersecretary on December 7, 1997; he held a farewell meeting with Treasury workers yesterday. He said that he had previously attempted to retire but that his request submitted before the April 18 polls, had been rejected by State Minister and Deputy Prime Minister Hikmet Ulugbay and the Prime Minister. Following the completion of talks with the IMF in Washington, however, he was allowed to leave his post.

    [18] EXPORTS IN APRIL

    Exports increased by 4.73 % in April when compared to the same period last year. According to a statement made by the Turkish Exporters' Assembly (TIM), exports which stood at $1.947 in April 1998 rose to $2.039 billion in April 1999. /Aksam/

    [19] CENTRAL BANKS' SUMMIT

    The Club of Governors consisting of Central Banks from Central Asian, Black Sea and Balkan countries will hold its first meeting in 1999 on May 7 in Istanbul. The Head of the Turkish Central Bank, Gazi Ercel, who has been elected the Head of the Club for two years, will chair the meeting. /Aksam/

    [20] NEW TURKSAT IN 2000

    Turkey, one of the 16 countries that has satellites at space, is preparing to launch a new Turkish satellite into space. The new Turksat-2A satellite will be sent in February 2000 to France and launched on 31 March 2000 from French Guiana. /Sabah/

    [21] NEW START IN URFA TUNNELS

    The construction of the Sanliurfa irrigation tunnels which had been halted due to insufficient funding has resumed. The General Directorate of the State Water Works (DSI) has received bids under the tender put out in order to complete the construction of the tunnels. The tunnels, planned to be completed within two years, will cost 4.1 trillion TL. /Aksam/

    [22] TURKEY'S DUES FROM LIBYA

    Turkey's dues from Libya which Turkish contractors have been unable to receive are included in the content of foreign exchange bridging loans. It has been demanded that the amount of the loans, envisaged to be used by Eximbank over a one-year term, be increased to $75-90 million. Turkish contractors who want to take advantage of these foreign exchange bridging loans will submit their documents, to be approved by the relevant Turkish Embassy, to Eximbank before May 7. /Aksam/

    [23] TURKISH SEAL ON THE 21ST CENTURY

    The Turkish Aviation and Space Industry (TAI) will contribute their manufacturing expertise to a 'dream plane' project to be implemented under the leadership of the US. The production of the high-technology Joint System for Fighters is being carried out by the US and will be put into service following the years 2008 and 2009. The TAI will also be involved in the production process. In addition to the TAI, the US firms of Boeing, Lockheed Martin, GE and P&W will also contribute to the venture. /Aksam/

    [24] TUPRAS RAISES PROFITS SIGNIFICANTLY

    Companies whose stocks are traded on the Istanbul Stock Exchange (IMKB) have announced the results of their balance sheets for the first three months of 1999. Out of the 183 companies reporting, 66 of them noted losses and 57 of them increased their profits. The Turkish Petroleum Refineries Corporation (TUPRAS) raised its profits by 592 % in the first three months of 1999. TUPRAS earned profits of 99 trillion TL in 1998. TUPRAS continued to improve its performance; net profits went from 4.22 trillion TL in the first three months of 1998 to 29.26 trillion TL in the same period of 1999. /All papers/

    [25] TOURIST FLOCK TO ANTALYA

    It is reported that in the first four months of the year 333,297 tourists came to Antalya via 2,500 charter flights. This number can be analysed thus: in April, 43% of the tourists who arrived in Antalya were German, while 9% of them were French and 5% Russian. Travel agencies and tourism firms note that along with effective advertising and international tourism fairs, the invitation of foreign journalists to Antalya in order to provide them with the opportunity to observe the tourism potential of the region has also yielded fruitful results. /Turkiye/

    [26] THY TO PEKING

    Turkish Airlines (THY) will start to fly to Peking in the People's Republic of China on 19 May. General Director of THY Yusuf Bolayırlı said that direct flights to Peking twice a week, every Wednesday and Saturday, will start on 19 May with Airbus A340 planes. He added that there wiil also be flights from Peking to Istanbul every Thursday and Sunday. /Hurriyet/

    [27] THY TO TIRANA

    Turkish Airlines (THY) will resume its flights to Tirana on May 10. Albanian airspace has been closed to air traffic due to the conflict in the region. According to a statement sent by the THY to the Istanbul Stock Exchange (IMKB), Tirana flights will be twice a week, on Mondays and Thursdays. /Aksam/

    [28] GSD FACTORING RECORDS '98 PROFIT OF 315.8 BILLION TL

    GSD Factoring A.S. in its first full year of operation, reported yesterday that its net income rose to 315.8 billion TL, up 468 % from the end of 1997. The Istanbul-based financial company, which began operating in July 1997, is 99.9 % owned by GSD Holding, a conglomerate involved in textile production and exports, banking and finance. /All papers/

    [29] RED CRESCENT BLOOD DONATION WEEK

    The annual Kizilay (Red Crescent) Blood Donation Week was launched by President Suleyman Demirel at the Presidential Palace yesterday. Demirel said that donating blood is an honorable and humanitarian duty and invited Turkish citizens to participate in this service. He also added that everybody's blood type should be determined. Health Minister Mustafa Guven Karahan said: "A unit of blood can save a person's life, and for that reason I hope blood donations will increase". /All papers/

    [30] "WORLD MUSIC AWARD" FOR TARKAN

    Turkish pop singer Tarkan was given a "World Music Award" in Monte Carlo. Tarkan was given the "Middle East Award" at the "World Music Awards" ceremony organized under the auspices of Prens Albert. /Hurriyet/

    [31] LAST CUP OF THE CENTURY TO GALATASARAY

    During the Final of the 37th Turkish Cup, Galatasaray defeated Besiktas 2-0. While Galatasaray fans were experiencing the joy of the victory, the Director of Galatasaray, Faruk Suren, said that it was their turn to become League Champion. /Aksam/

    [32] FROM THE COLUMNS ... FROM THE COLUMNS ... FROM THE COLUMNS

    [33] FROM CHIRAC TO DEMIREL: DO NOT GET DISENCHANTED WITH EUROPE - BY HASAN CEMAL (MILLIYET)

    Hasan Cemal, a columnist for `Milliyet', reflects on President Demirel's recent visit to France and the new path of Turco-EU relations. Cemal writes:

    "The `Ottoman Treasuries' Exhibition, inaugurated by President Demirel and President Chirac in Versailles is a fascinating beauty. Besides, on the same historic site, it was a privilege to listen to world-renowned Turkish pianist Fazıl Say, performing Mozart, Erkin, Debussy and Gershwin. Both of them belong to our own culture. Are we from the Orient or from the Occident? Perhaps we are a queer mixture of the two. Are we European or not?

    It was in 1856 in Paris that the Ottoman Empire was accepted as a component of the European State System. What is our place in Europe now? The answer to this question was no doubt pursued in the deliberations between President Demirel and President Chirac. In turn, both Chirac and Prime Minister Jospin gave a clear message: Do not get disenchanted with Europe. Do not isolate yourself from Europe. Apparently, Europe is concerned about the rise of the Nationalist Action Party (MHP) in the recent Election. There is an uncanny attitude towards Turkish politics in Paris, the capital city of Europe. Always the same questions are on the agenda: Will Turkey turn its back on Europe? Will it turn inside?

    President Chirac told President Demirel that they will do their utmost to nominate Turkey as a candidate country for the EU. He promised that they will launch initiatives to achieve this aim in cooperation with Germany. He stated that in the past he was unable to transcend the opposition of Chancellor Kohl, and more recently, they are blocked by Greece. Meanwhile, he added that they were waiting for certain contributions from Turkey as well in order to resolve the Greek obstacle. For instance, he claimed that Turkey should apply to the Justice Court in the Hague. In turn, Demirel gave the expected answer: `The attitude of the EU towards Turkey is basically flawed. It brings Greece to an uncompromising position. Under these circumstances, if I were in the place of Greece, I would not compromise either. You have to distinguish between the Turco-Greek problems and the Turco-EU relations immediately.' Demirel also stressed Greek support for PKK terrorism.

    Indeed, all European capital cities are familiar with Demirel's message to Chirac: `In the first place, you should approve Turkey's being a candidate country- not with a special status or by means of the 11+1 formula, but in the way applied to all other candidates. Then it would be easier to take steps forward...' As a diplomatic source who closely watched Demirel's meetings with Jospin and Chirac, `All is the same in the Turco-EU relations!'

    Turkey arrives at a crossroads in its relations with Europe; both Ankara and the European capitals are aware of this fact. There are two reasons for that; the first one is the rise of the MHP. Second, there is the possibility that a Democratic Left Party-Nationalist Action Party-Motherland Party coalition may pursue a less flexible policy towards Europe. In this respect, Paris also wonders whether Turkey will turn its back on Europe. This possibility may become real only on condition that Europe also desires such a shift in Turkey's perspective. Demirel also emphasized this fact in his meetings. Yet he made another emphasis as well: Turkey cannot give up Europe! Thus, he seems more positive towards Europe than the current leaders of our political parties.

    However, we should note that in spite of the fact that the EU has committed a number of wrongs against Turkey, we also have a remarkable amount of homework to do."

    [34] TURKEY'S PLACE IN FOREIGN POLICY - BY ILTER TURKMEN (HURRIYET)

    In his column in `Hurriyet' Ilter Turkmen analyzes Turkish foreign policy. A summary of his column is as follows:

    "Former UN Secretary General Boutros Boutros Ghali stated that foreign policy was important for smaller states, as great states could do without it. In fact, in particular during the period following the Cold War, we can see that great states have not suffered because of their mistakes in foreign policy. In the Balkans, Bosnians, Albanians and other nations suffer because of their mistakes.

    Turkey can be described neither as a small nor a great state. However, due to its geographic location the cost of its past mistakes has been high. The cautious and realistic policies of Ataturk and Inonu are based on historical experience. At present, Turkey is a regional power and has a strong army which can support its policies. The 55th government used this power and prevented the deployment of Russian missiles on Cyprus and ended Syrian support for the PKK terrorist organization. The fruits of these policies were reaped by the 56th government and benefiting both from the operational support of a great state, and the failure of Greece in sponsoring the PKK, it has been able to deliver Ocalan to Turkish justice.

    The priority of the 57th government in its foreign policy will be given where domestic and foreign developments affect each other; reactions to the trial of Ocalan will be one of the main issues among them. Including the administrative and technical arrangements, the methods used, the rights granted to defence lawyers, and the facilities provided for the journalists, all aspects of the trial process will be observed critically by the West. It is seen as inevitable that Ocalan will get the heaviest punishment foreseen by the rules of law due to the numerous murders he has committed. Therefore, it will be much better for the trial process to be as short as possible so as not to give way to its exploitation both internally and externally.

    It should also be expected that the human rights file of Turkey will be given priority. As the Chairman of the Constitutional Court has drawn attention to the deficiencies in the implementaion of the laws in this field, approaches and suggestions by the Western states should be expected.

    Those who analyze the statement given by the Chairman of the Constitutional Court, Ahmet Necdet Sezer, point out that there are limitations to the freedom of expression in Western States.This observation is correct, but it should not be forgotten that there is a consensus in those societies on the inevitable limitations of certain freedoms and, therefore those rules are rarely used.

    The most current problems in Turkish foreign policy are related to problems which have to be solved urgently internally. The steps taken in this direction, will open up new perspectives in Turkish foreign policy."


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