|Friday, 24 March 2017|
Turkish Press Review, 00-12-19
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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
 EU OFFICE OF SECRETARY GENERAL LEAVES CONTROVERSIAL ISSUES TO LEADERS
 FROM THE COLUMNS... FROM THE COLUMNS... FROM THE COLUMNS...
 AMNESTY LAWThe Amnesty Law, which was returned to the Turkish Grand National Assembly (TGNA) by President Ahmet Necdet Sezer, was discussed at the Constitutional Commission yesterday. After negotiations that took nearly three hours, with a 13 to 5 vote, the Commission decided the Amnesty Law was in line with the Constitution. The Amnesty Law will be discussed at the Justice Commission today. /Aksam/
 NATIONAL SECURITY COUNCIL MEETINGThe recent police demonstrations, hunger strikes in prisons, reactionary and separatist activities and the struggle against the organized crimes will be discussed at the ordinary monthly meeting of the National Security Council (MGK). In addition, the year will be evaluated as this is the final MGK meeting of the year. The MGK meeting will be chaired by the President Ahmet Necdet Sezer at Cankaya Presidential Palace on 22 December. Minister of the Interior, Saadettin Tantan, Minister of Justice Hikmet Sami Turk and the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ismail Cem will give detailed information on the issue to the members of the MGK. In addition, the Conditional Release Law, vetoed by the President Ahmet Necdet Sezer and returned by the government, will be on the agenda of the MGK meeting. The one-year evaluation of the Economic and Social Development Plan will be also made during the meeting. /Aksam/
 ARMENIANS' NEW PLANThe Armenian lobby, did not have the so-called genocide bill passed in the US House of Representatives during its previous term, prepared another plan to bring the genocide claim before the House next term. 3,000 Armenians in the US claim their grandfathers were massacred in Anatolia in 1915. They are preparing to request a law be enacted so they can demand compensation from American insurance companies. Chairman of Atlanta Turkish-American Association, Vural Cengiz, uncovered the secret plan of the Armenians. Upon learning about this initiative, Cengiz came to Turkey and met with Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit and said, "Let us not be late this time". Meanwhile, Ecevit gave instruction to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs to closely follow the initiative. The counter lobby activity will start. /Sabah/
 GREEK-CYPRIOTS TAKE A BACK STEPTension on the island was related to an incident occurring in Pile 18 days ago; a village of Turkish and Greek Cypriots living together under UN management. A Turkish-Cypriot, Omer Gazi Tekogul, was arrested on drug smuggling charges by the Greek-Cypriot police. However, neither the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC), nor the Greek-Cypriot Administration have the right to arrest him as the village is under the UN control. Then the Greek-Cypriot National Guard was billeted on a hill south of Pile village after a Greek-Cypriot contractor, Banayodis Griyagu, Cakurma was arrested in Beyarmudu village for drug possession. Following this incident, the TRNC's Security Forces Command warned the Greek-Cypriot National Guard to stop the billeting. When the time that was given to the Greek-Cypriots came to an end, the TRNC President Rauf Denktas went to Pile and said, "You will be responsible for the results unless you remove the billets and return the hill to its previous position." TRNC's Minister of Foreign Affairs Tahsin Ertugruloglu pointed out they had made the 'necessary demands' to the Greek-Cypriot Administration to stop the military investigations. Ertugruloglu said, "Now the Greek-Cypriots have stopped the billeting. Stopping or increasing the tension depends on the Greek-Cypriot Administration. We consider ourselves to be right in taking all sorts of measures against the developments that will put Turkish-Cypriots in danger." /Sabah/
 KANADOGLU, NEW CHIEF PUBLIC PROSECUTOR AT COURT OF APPEALSPresident Ahmet Necdet Sezer appointed Sabih Kanadoglu as the new Chief Public Prosecutor in the Court of Appeals. Former Chief Public Prosecutor Vural Savas was the candidate receiving the highest number of votes at the election held in the General Council of the Court of Appeals. Sabih Kanadoglu followed him. Upon the appointment, Mr. Kanadoglu said, "We will always protect democratic and secular Turkish state." Meanwhile, Mr. Savas said, "No surprise to me." /Cumhuriyet/
 EU OFFICE OF SECRETARY GENERAL LEAVES CONTROVERSIAL ISSUES TO LEADERSThe Turkish EU Office of the Secretary General, responsible for preparing a national plan in response to the Accession Partnership Document, will leave the decision-making process on controversial issues such as opening a Kurdish TV, education in a mother tongue, abolishment of the death penalty and the role of the National Security Council in Turkish political life, to the leaders. Four articles related to these issues will be left blank in the National Action Plan (NAP) on January 15. The EU Office of the Secretary General will later add the decisions on these issues which will be made at the NAP draft summit. /Hurriyet/
 DEFENSE OF THE LAWYER OF MARTYRS' FAMILIES IN ECHRAfter the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) agreed to review the application filed by Abdullah Ocalan's lawyers, the lawyer of the martyrs' families, Ciler Savasan petitioned the ECHR to attend the lawsuit. Mr. Savasan stated in his petition that 224 families were due damages because of the terroristic activities of Abdullah Ocalan. /Cumhuriyet/
 VERHEUGEN: "NICE DECISIONS MAY BE REJECTED IN EP"The EU Commissioner Responsible for the Enlargement, Gunther Verheugen, said the decisions taken in Nice might be rejected in the European Parliament (EP)." Recalling that members of the European Parliament are not happy with the decisions, Mr. Verheugen said that because the EP powers were not strengthened as a result of the Nice Summit, the members were discontent. He added, "There seems to be no obstacle on the way to the EU enlargement. New crisis may emerge after the Summit. However, as our experiences show, every crisis may pave the way for new opportunities." /Cumhuriyet/
 COHEN: "TURKEY IS IMPORTANT"William Cohen, US Secretary of Defence, joined a party organized at the US base in Kosovo yesterday. Answering a question posed by a Turkish journalist on a military agreement signed between Armenia and the US last week, Mr. Cohen said, "We have good relations with Turkey. It is a very important ally both for the US and the NATO. For this reason, we refrain from any attempt jeopardizing our relations." /Turkiye/
 TURKISH-GREEK COOPERATION COUNCIL HELD IN ANTALYAThe 'Turkish-Greek Cooperation Council in the European Union Affairs' meeting was held in Antalya. Ambassador Akin Alptuna chaired the Turkish delegation and the Greek Ministry of Foreign Affairs' General Secretary Responsible for the European Affairs, Elias Plaskovitis chaired the Greek delegation. /Sabah/
 GENERAL STAFF IN GEORGIAA delegation from the office of the Chief of the General Staff went to Georgia to improve military cooperation and hold bilateral contacts. The Turkish delegation is chaired by the Chairman of the National Strategy Department, Major General Nusret Tasderel. The Georgian delegation is chaired by the Border Guards Commander Valeri Cheydze. /Sabah/
 TURKISH-AMERICAN RELATIONS WILL IMPROVEThe government is optimistic about the future of Turkish-American relations. They believe relations will improve more during the Bush administration, as he has a tight-knit team which approach foreign policy with strategic concepts and a knowledge of Turkey. Ankara believes the new administration is not willing to play an active role in events that do not have a direct effect on American interests. It is believed the Bush administration will pursue a foreign policy in line with American global and strategic interests and will give primary importance to trusted regional allies. Ankara believes Turkey will cooperate more effectively in the Middle East, Balkans, Caucasia and the Central Asia with the United States and Turkey's role in the region will increase. /Milliyet/
 REPORT ON HUMAN RIGHTS AND DEMOCRACY IN TURKEYThe Council of Europe Parliamentary Assembly Monitoring Committee will discuss Turkey's human rights and democracy report at its meeting today. Democratic Left Party Deputy, Uluc Gurkan will attend the meeting in Paris. If the report is accepted in the committee's meeting it will be sent to the Assembly for its Jan.22-26 meeting. /Star/
 SADDAM'S SUPPORT TO PKKIraqi leader Saddam Huseyin has begun efforts to revive the PKK terrorist organization. Intelligence reports said Saddam has increased his support of the PKK. During clashes between Talaban forces and the PKK last month, Iraqi forces gave support to the PKK forces. Negotiations will be held today with the Iraqi officials in Ankara. Turkey will warn Iraqi Under Secretary Weis. /Star/
 ISMET INONU COMMEMORATEDThe second Turkish President Ismet Inonu will be commemorated in the "Pink Pavillon" on the 27th anniversary of his death. The former leader of the SHP party and Ismet Inonu's son, Erdal Inonu, and the former Minister of Culture Talat Halman will deliver speeches during the commemoration ceremony. The ceremony is jointly organized by the Turkish Education Foundation and Inonu Foundation on 21 December. In addition, a ceremony will be organized for Inonu on 25 December at his tomb in the Mausoleum of Ataturk. /Aksam/
 AGREEMENT TO BAKU-CEYHAN OIL PIPELINEAn agreement of principle was reached between the Georgian government and British Petroleum (BP) regarding the engineering and land studies for construction of and oil pipeline passing through Georgia. Chairman of the Georgian International Petroleum Company, Giyorgi Canturiya, said the BP Administration should ratify the Baku-Ceyhan pipeline project by May 2001. He also added that the companies financing the construction will be determined in Jan. 2001. /Turkiye/
 BAHCELI: "ANTI-INFLATION STRUGGLE WILL CONTINUE"State Minister and Deputy Prime Minister Devlet Bahceli said, "We will never make any concessions on the anti-inflation program as this is the means by which Turkey will gain stability." Charing the Small and Middle Scaled Industry Development and Support Administration General Assembly, Bahceli emphasized the road to success, as proven through the development process of developed countries, is found in attaching importance and giving support to Small and Middle Scaled Enterprises. Stressing that developed countries, which have more than $20,000 gross national income per capita (GNIC), allocate 2% percent of the income for Research-Development studies. However, Turkey allocates only 0.5% of the GNIC for R and D, Mr. Bahceli said, "All administrators of public institutions have a responsibility to heal this situation." /Turkiye/
 TURKEY BECOMES THE MOST SUCCESSFUL COUNTRY IN BORROWINGAn international finance magazine, the International Financial Review (IFR), selected Turkey as the most successful country in the world in terms of foreign borrowing for 2000. In its annual evaluation, IFR deemed Turkey worthy of a total of three awards, one of which is in terms of foreign borrowing and the other two in terms of thirty-year-term-debentures (totalling 3 billion US dollars). The IFR evaluation stated that in spite of difficulties in the conditions in international markets, Turkey could borrow money from various markets successfully with convenient conditions. /Aksam/
 IS BANK'S SUCCESS IN RECEIVING CREDITTurkish Is Bank received $275 million in syndicated loan from international markets. The agreement regarding the loan with a one year maturity, to finance exports was signed in London yesterday with the participation of 22 banks' representatives. Is Bank Director General, Ersin Ozince said despite recent negative situations in local markets, receiving such a loan displays the trust to Is Bank in foreign markets. Previously, Is Bank received a syndicated loan of $500 million in last August from 64 international banks. /Turkiye/
 $4.2 BILLION-LOAN TO TURKEYTurkey is expected to receive $4.2 billion loan this week. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) will release $2.8 billion-loan following its Executive Board meeting Dec. 21st. Additionally, the World Bank's $400 million-financial reform loan will be sent this week. The $1 billion-loan obtained from international banks to Turkish banks with the support of the IMF, will be received Dec.22. /Turkiye/
 KOC HOLDING COMPANY'S TARGETKoc Holding Company determined its growth target as 10% for the year 2001. Chairman of the Executive Board of Koc Holding Company, Rahmi Koc, and the Deputy Chairman Temel Atay's opinions, expressed during a meeting closed to the press, were issued in the Koc Group of Companies' monthly magazine, 'Bizden Haberler'. According to the article, Chairman Rahmi Koc pointed out the 1999 economic crisis was solved. Meanwhile, Mr. Atay said the company's new vision was to be among the 200 largest companies in the world. /Sabah/
 SWISSAIR AND ALITALIA AT THE THY TENDERSwissair and Alitalia announced they are interested in the tender of Turkish Airlines (THY). Swissair Press Representative, J.C.Donzel, said the consortium composed of Swissair and Alitalia will participate in the tender. Swissair will give another offer with Malaysian Airlines for the tender. Alitalia will form another partnership with the Air France at the tender. /Milliyet/
 NEW TENDER SYSTEM FOR PRIVATIZATIONThe State Tender Law will be adjusted to EU requirements and the demands of the IMF and the World Bank. The State Tender System will become more open. The new law will be in effect in 2001. Currently there are 6,000 projects being held by the national and international firms. According to the new system, there will be no differentiation between national or foreign firms. Within the framework of the European Laws, having a Turkish adress will be enough for the bidder to take part in a tender. The announcement period for a tender will be a minimum of 30 days. Three basic tender systems will be applied, compatible with the type of the undertaking. The open tender method, the invitation method of specified bidders for undertakings requiring high technology and mountainous investment, and the models such as public auction and bargaining will be used in the tenders. /Milliyet/
 CENTRAL BANK SAYS MACHINERY MOST PROFITABLE IN 1999The Central Bank announced that the most profitable sectors of the manufacturing industry in 1999 were the machinery and equipment industry, the chemical industry and the electrical and optical devices sector, in that order. The 1997-1999 Sectoral Balance Sheet Study and Assessment Report prepared by the Central Bank was based on information provided in the financial records of 7,604 firms and made public Dec.18. In terms of equity profitability, the oil products industry, the machinery and equipment industry and the furniture industry are listed as the most favoured in 1999. Among non-manufacturing sectors, the leasing, property, renter and education sectors were the highest-profit earning sectors in 1999. Financial intermediaries, insurance and factoring were the most profitable sectors in terms of equity profits. The Central Bank report mentioned that net sales of both private and public sector manufacturing companies has decreased in real terms in 1999 when compared to 1998. /Turkish Daily News/
 TURKISH MANAGER TO FRENCH COSMETICS COMPANY L'OREALA Turkish manager, Erdinc Cetincelik, was appointed Deputy Director General of L'Oreal International Professional Relations Department. Mr. Cetincelik was working as a Technical and Artistic Director in Istanbul. /Hurriyet/
 CAPADOCCIAN TOURISM TO BE POPULAR IN 2001The Chairman of Capadoccia Tourism Managements Association, Ahmet Tok said, "As the interest in cultural tourism increases around the world, the interest in tours to Capadoccia has increased in European and Far Eastern countries." Stating they are hopeful that Capadoccian tourism will be popular in 2001, Mr. Tok said, "Foreign tourists are fascinated by the natural, historical and cultural beauties and values of Capadoccia." /Cumhuriyet/
 FROM THE COLUMNS... FROM THE COLUMNS... FROM THE COLUMNS...
 CYPRUS AT A CRITICAL POINT BY SAMI KOHEN (MILLIYET)Columnist Sami Kohen comments on the latest developments concerning Cyprus. A summary of his column is as follows:
"There are important developments concerning the Cyprus problem which have been left in the background due to other urgent issues Turkey has to deal with. TRNC President Rauf Denktas decided not to attend the sixth round of proximity talks to be held in Geneva next month. The TRNC Parliament has approved this decision.
As the UN Security Council decision extending the stay of Cyprus Peace Force did not take the presence of the TRNC into consideration, it has led to harsh reactions from the Turkish-Cypriot side. The TRNC Government is preparing to take new measures restricting the actions of the UN troops. Frictions in Pile, the only village where Turkish and Greek-Cypriots live together, is another source of tension drawing UN officials into the matter.
Denktas' decision not to attend the Cyprus proximity talks is a reaction to UN Secretary General Kofi Annan's ideas defined as 'oral observations'. These ideas expressed in Annan's non-paper, do not have an official nature. However, they show the type of solution the UN Secretary General wants. Denktas vehemently opposes these ideas and saying they would reduce the Turkish-Cypriots to a minority status and completely Hellenize the Island in a few years. Therefore, he believes the negotiation process has collapsed and says, unless the existence and sovereignty of TRNC is recognized beforehand he would not attend any negotiations.
In fact, the majority of the opinions expressed in Annan's non-paper contradict the opinions of the Turkish side. It is apparent that the Secretary General wants to draw negotiations towards the former UN resolutions (which are opposed by the Turkish side), and to persuade the sides to reach a solution in this direction.
The Cyprus problem was discussed at length at a meeting attended by Minister of Foreign Affairs Ismail Cem, the day before yesterday. During these discussions it became clear that Ankara and Lefkoshe was in complete agreement. Denktas' recent policy is supported by Turkey. Ankara also oppposes Kofi Annan's views and believes negotiations cannot go on based on his ideas. Turkish diplomacy fears that these views would not convince the Greek-Cypriot side to recognize the presence of TRNC, but would, in fact, prepare the basis for a declaration of Greek-Cypriot sovereignty over the whole Island.
Turkey does not intend to approve a formula imposed by foreign powers, just to say a solution has been found. In the words of a diplomat, 'a bad solution cannot be a solution'. If this line of thinking is accepted, the Turkish side would suffer.
Turkish officials also state that Denktas' decision does not mean an end to negotiations. The door is left open for a new process and this will be conveyed to Annan's special representative, Alvaro de Soto. However, the negotiations should be based on new principles and these principles should be defined beforehand.
No matter how justified and sound Turkish views may be, it is apparent that Ankara will be under the pressure by the UN, US and the EU. The signs of these pressures are now visible. The fact that Turkey seems to be the party escaping negotiations, and bringing restrictions on the Island's UN troops on the Island, will lead the whole world to believe that neither Denktas nor Turkey want a solution. This may not be left only as a rumor but lead to actions which would endanger Turkey's foreign policy.
In brief, the recent developments in Cyprus have reached a critical stage."
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