|Monday, 4 March 2024
Turkish Press Review, 00-10-20
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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
 UNFPA PROPOSES CONTRIBUTION TO TURKEY'S SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT OBJECTIVES
 FRIENDSHIP BETWEEN TURKEY AND GREECE TO BE MOVED TO STOCK EXCHANGE
 FROM THE COLUMNS... FROM THE COLUMNS... FROM THE COLUMNS... SEZER'S DIPLOMACY ATTACK IN CENTRAL ASIA BY SAMI KOHEN
 PRESIDENT SEZER IN KAZAKHSTANPresident Ahmet Necdet Sezer traveled to Kazakhstan yesterday. Secretary of State Abis Kekilbayev, Turkish Ambassador to Almati, Cynar Aldemir and other officials welcomed the President at the airport. After the official meeting ceremony, Mr. Sezer met Kazakhstan President Nursultan Nazarbayev. /Cumhuriyet/
 WITHDRAWAL OF THE SO-CALLED ARMENIAN GENOCIDE BILLThe so-called Armenian Genocide Bill that was withdrawn from the floor of the American House of Representatives. Speaker of the House, Dennis Hastert was cornered by a warning from the American President Bill Clinton. In his letter to Hastert, Clinton wrote: "If this bill is passed, peace will be seriously damaged. I strongly urge you not to bring this bill to the floor of the House of Representatives at this moment. Let the Armenians and the Turks solve this problem amongst themselves." As a result, Hastert took a step back. American Secretary of State Madeline Albright and the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff's harsh announcements were also effective. For now the crisis is postponed with the bill's withdrawal. /Star/
 FINAL AGREEMENTS ON BAKU-CEYHAN PIPELINE PROJECT SIGNEDTurkey signed the final agreements on the Baku-Ceyhan project, which will transfer Azerbaijani petroleum to Western markets via a pipeline passing through Turkey. Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit, Minister of Energy and Natural Resources, Cumhur Ersumer, Acting President and the TGNA Speaker, Omer Izgi and State Minister Husamettin Ozkan attended the ceremony. The agreements were signed by Azerbaijan, Georgia, Turkey and the sponsor companies. The Host Country Agreement was signed by Mr. Ersumer, the Full Handover Agreement by Director General of BOTAS, Gokhan Yardim and the Guarantee Documents Agreement by Treasury Undersecretary Selcuk Demiralp. Delivering a speech at the ceremony, Prime Minister Ecevit said, "This project will lead to the strengthening of the political structures of the Central Asian and Caucasian countries. Turkey is determined to ensure all support necessary for the project's." Head of BP Azerbaijan, David Woodward said signing the agreements was a major step for the project, but not the final. Representative of the US President Bill Clinton, John Wolf also emphasized the importance of further steps necessary for the development of the project. /Cumhuriyet/
 COOPERATION WITH ALBANIA IN ALL AREASPrime Minister Bulent Ecevit met with his Albanian counterpart Ilir Meta yesterday. After the meeting, stressing that Albania had Turkey's support in its efforts for stability and development, Mr. Meta said, "We will cooperate with Turkish companies being more active in all areas in Albania." Pointing out that Turkish investors' interest in Albania was gradually increasing Premier Ecevit said in addition to economics, cooperation in defence and military training would also contribute to peace and stability in the region. /Turkiye/
 ARNOR: "TURKEY MIGHT BRING PEACE TO THE MIDDLE EAST."Israeli Consul-General to Turkey, Amire Arnon, evaluated the latest developments in the Middle East. Stating that the bilateral relations between Turkey and Israel were going well, Ms. Arnon said she appreciated Turkey's high performence during the Middle East peace process. Ms. Arnon said, "Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit and Foreign Minister Ismail Cem personally phoned Israel. They did their utmost for peace. We see Turkey as a key country in bringing peace to the Middle East." /Sabah/
 YILMAZ CARRIES OUT MEETINGS IN BRUSSELSState Minister and Deputy Prime Minister Mesut Yilmaz is continuing his meetings regarding the European Union in Brussels. Mr. Yilmaz met with Javier Solana, the EU Joint Foreign Policy and Defence Representative yesterday. Yilmaz said that during the meeting, topics such as, the European Security and Defence Identity (ESDI), Turkey's accession and possible contributions were taken up. Meanwhile, Greece asked Gunter Verhuegen (the EU Commissioner responsible for enlargement), currently in Athens, to include Turco-Greek relations and Cyprus topics into the Accession Partnership Document (APD) concerning Turkey. Declaring no views on the APD up to now, Greece officially conveyed its view to Mr. Verhuegen while Mesut Yilmaz has been meeting with the EU organizations' officials in Brussels. Turkey wants neither Cyprus nor Turco-Greek relations being included in the APD. /Turkiye/
 BARCHARD: "TURKEY WILL BE A MEMBER OF THE EU"The Turkish Foundation of Economic and Social Studies (TESEV) published a booklet entitled 'EU-Turkey: Through a Strong Cooperation' to disseminate to the Turkish nation information about Turkey's membership to the EU. This booklet, written by Turkey specialist David Barchard, evaluates the opportunities, risks and profits awaiting Turkey and the EU concerning the integration. Barchard said, "If Turkey fulfils its responsibilities during the negotiations and if it is not give up the negotiations, then it will become a member of the EU." /Aksam/
 UNFPA PROPOSES CONTRIBUTION TO TURKEY'S SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT OBJECTIVESThe United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) proposes to support a population program from 2001-2005 to help the Turkish government achieve its population and development objectives. UNFPA is holding a meeting to establish a technical group that will assist UNFPA in developing the secondary programs. The meeting will be held on Oct. 27 in Ankara. The proposed program was formulated through a broad participatory process involving a wide range of ministries, universities, nongovernmental organisations (NGOs). It took into consideration the national health and population policies and priorities in Turkey's eight Five-Year Development Plan. /Turkish Daliy News/
 CONCENTRATION ON THE TURKISH BORDERAs part of the decision at the Organization of the Security and Cooperation of European (OSCE) Summit, Moscow will close two of its four headquarters in Georgia by 1 July 2000. Russia began to implement its decision and transport a portion of the weapons, withdrawn from Georgia, to the Gumru Headquarters in Armenia on the Turkish border. The first stage of the transportation, which is expected to be complete by the end of this year, 76 pairs of military equipment will be transported to the Russian Headquarter in Armenia. Detailed information concerning these weapons was not given. /Milliyet/
 A PKK BACKED BANK WILL BE ESTABLISHED IN EUROPEThe so-called leader of the terrorist organization PKK, Osman Ocalan initiates the establishment of a "Kurdish Bank" in Europe. The PKK, also established two different foundations, "Foundation of Kurdish Businessmen" and "Foundation of Young Businessmen". Ocalan said, " We want to differentiate Kurds from Turks. Therefore, we included "Kurdish" in the names of our organizations to separate our identity. We will first establish a federal, then an independent Kurdish state. We will establish this state from the territories of Turkey, Syria, Iran and Iraq." /Hurriyet/
 500 PKK TERRORISTS REMAINED IN TURKEYAcoording to a report "Military Balance" prepared by the International Institute for Strategical Studies(IISS) based in London, Turkey has made PKK terrorism ineffective. The capture of PKK leader Abdullah Ocalan was a turning point, after which the PKK terrorist organization began to wither. Furthermore it was argued that thousands of terrorists withdrew to training camps in Iran and Iraq and only 500 terrorists remained within the territories of Turkey. Hence, the financial means of the terrorist organization gained from extortion and illegal drug trafficking have declined. "The Turkish government had established order in the region even before the capture of Ocalan. After PKK terrorists lost their morale and could not establish networks in the cities. Currently, there is a lower probability of occurance of terrorist activities in Turkey", said the report. /Hurriyet/
 KISLALI'S MURDERER ESCAPED TO IRANThe fugitive defendant, Oguz Demir, accused of preparing the bomb used during the assasinations of journalists Ugur Mumcu and Ahmet Taner Kislali, escaped to Iran. The Iranian intelligence services stated that Demir entered Iran through the Esendere Customs Gate 20 days ago. It was determined that Demir used a fake passport during escape to Iran. /Aksam/
 BRITISH ROYAL NAVY COMMANDER TO VISIT TURKEYBritish Royal Navy Commander Adm. Micheal Boyce will visit Turkey as the official guest of Turkish Naval Forces Commander Gen. Ylhami Erdil on Oct 22. Adm. Boyce is to pay a courtesy visit to Gen. Bulent Alpkaya at his office in Kocaeli Golcuk district. /Turkiye/
 PLOY IN DESTINED GLORY-2000 EXERCISES THWARTEDAfter Greece included the Nikaria-Limni air corridor to the Destined Glory-2000 exercises, American radar planes (AWACS) began patrolling the region in response to Turkish demands. Stating that Limni Island was, according to the Lausanne Agreement, in the disarmament region, Turkish military officials said Greece's real aim was to try their new weapon systems on Limni island. "The air corridor is under strict control now. Greece will be warned if there is a deviation from NATO's aims.", added the officials. /Sabah/
 SUPPLEMENTARY TAXES CONTINUE TO BE COLLECTEDLeaders of the coalition parties convened yesterday in a summit of economic supplementary measures. During the summit, it was decided to continue the three supplementary taxes put into effect after the earthquake of Aug.17. Those taxes will be collected until the end of the economic program in 2002. Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit announced the supplementary measures for the 2001 fiscal budget in a press conference yesterday. A draft law will be submitted to the parliament to continue collecting Special Communication, special transaction taxes as well as a share of the contribution to education in the next two years. Mr. Ecevit said, "The new regulations will not negatively affect the low-income groups." /Hurriyet/
 KAZAKHSTAN-TURKEY FRIENDSHIP NIGHTSThe Kazakhstan Embassy and the Turkish Cooperation and Development Agency (TIKA) are jointly organizing "Kazakhstan-Turkey Friendship Nights" in various cities throughout Turkey to mark the ninth anniversary of the Kazakhstan Republic's independence. During the events, videos promoting Kazakhstan, concerts, and Kazakh handicraft and painting exhibitions will be held. /Turkiye/
 FRIENDSHIP BETWEEN TURKEY AND GREECE TO BE MOVED TO STOCK EXCHANGEIndex Computer, a 50% partnership with by the Greek Pouliadis Group, will be offered to the public. Chairman of the Executive Board of Index Computer, Erol Bilecik, said they would increase the amount of the paid-in capital from 3.2 trillion TL to 4 trillion TL and they would offer the increased amount to the public. Bilecik said, "We have taken this decision with the support of Poluliadis Group, which is the strongest branch in the Balkans. The Poluliadis Group includes 46 companies, four of which are traded on the Athens Stock Exchange. The group is preparing to offer two more of their companies to the public in January. We have made use of their experience concerning public offers." /Milliyet/
 CHAIRMAN OF THE BULGARIAN CENTRAL BANK IN ISTANBULChairman of the Bulgarian Central Bank, Tentcho Tenev, and the representatives of leading finance institutions in Bulgaria arrived in Istanbul as the guests of Demirbank Bulgaria. Guest bankers will be briefed on the Turkish economy and the banking sector by Asaf Savas Akad today at the building of the General Directorate. Demirbank Bulgaria, based in Sofia which increased its balance sheet four fold in its first year, has a branch in Varna. Demirbank Bulgaria, which carried out its first official and international factoring transaction with Demir Factoring, is giving finance services to the important companies within the framework of its cooperation with Demir Investment. /Sabah/
 TUBE PASSAGE ON BOSPHORUSMinister of Communication Enis Oksuz stated that the necessary financing for the tube passage at the Bosphorus was ensured. Oksuz said, "We have a 40 year loan package from Japan. 200,000 people can be transported between Pendik and Halkali per hour. The money was spent on the project will be met in five years." /Star/
 PROF. GAZI YASARGIL RECEIVES TUBITAK AWARD OF SCIENCEThe Scientific and Technical Research Council of Turkey (TUBITAK) decided to present this year's science award to Prof. Gazi Yasargil for his invaluable service and precious contribution to humanity and science. The award will be given at a ceremony Nov.9 in Ankara. /Hurriyet/
 FROM THE COLUMNS... FROM THE COLUMNS... FROM THE COLUMNS...
 SEZER'S DIPLOMACY ATTACK IN CENTRAL ASIA BY SAMI KOHEN (MILLIYET)Columnist Sami Kohen comments on Turkey's relations with Central Asian countries and President Sezer's visit. A summary of his column is as follows:
"Recently, Turkey's relations with the Central Asian countries are not as smooth as before. Despite certain personal contacts and a mutual sympathy, a stagnation and even a coldness has set in between Turkey and these republics. At the beginning of the 1990s, just after the republics proclaimed their independence, a warm and enthusiastic climate ruled. The Turkish speaking world became a new and important part of Ankara's foreign relations. It was believed that common history, religion, language and culture would lead to establishment of strong relations with these brotherly countries in all areas.
During the presidencies of Ozal and Demirel, the relationships between the leaders seriously improved. In the meantime, cooperation developed in many fields ranging from trade to education. However, the cooperation never reached expected levels. This has led to disapointment on all sides. It was claimed that following the end of President Demirel's term in office the relations would become colder. In fact, when President Ahmet Necdet Sezer took over , Turkish Foreign Ministry launched a new diplomacy attack in its Central Asia policy. Ankara reassessed the relations on a sound basis and decided to inclulde them in its foreign policy program. Ankara took the initiative to eradicate existing disagreements and lack of confidence, as was the case with Uzbekistan.
President Sezer's visit to four Central Asian countries is an important part of this new approach. Sezer's breakthrough reveals two factors: First, Turkey's interest in these republics is revived and the stagnant period has been left behind. Second, the relations between Turkey and these countries are being established based on mutual interests and to ensure practical advantages.
At the beginning, sentimentality dominated relations. There were talks of brotherly ties. It was believed that these states would cast their votes in favour of Turkey in all areas. However, these estimations and the 'taken for granted' attitude were wrong. It took 10 years to understand this fact and return to a realistic policy.
It is true that at first the Central Asian Republics viewed Turkey's secular and pluralistic establishment as a role model for their political, economic and social reforms. However, these countries, in the process of re-structuring and developing, needed friends which would lend them a helping hand. Although the countries continued to depend on Moscow, particularly in their economies, there was stiff competition between many countries extending from Russia to the US, from Iran to China. At present Ankara is aware of these conditions and expectations. The sound and continual improvement of relations depend upon taking these factors into consideration.
President Sezer's visit has shown that new strategies are being formed which take these factors into consideration. For example, security issues with the Central Asian countries are gaining importance. This is a new area of cooperation to meet the needs of Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan. Both states with threats from fundamentalist terrorism. They need moral and material support. Turkey has experience in the area and, according to the agreements signed, will provide the necessary support to these countries.
There are many areas of cooperation with the Central Asian Republics such as energy which we are in dire need of, and agriculture, animal husbandry and industry they require. However, all these projects should be taken up with a rational and realistic approach. This is what we expect from Mr.Sezer's visit."
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