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Turkish Press Review, 02-03-08

Turkish Press Review Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: Turkish Directorate General of Press and Information <http://www.byegm.gov.tr>

<LINK href="http://www.byegm.gov.tr_yayinlarimiz_chr_pics_css/tpr.css" rel=STYLESHEET type=text/css> <map name="FPMap1"> <_map> Press &amp; Information Turkish Press Turkish Press Review &gt;&gt; Foreign Press Guide Summary of the political and economic news in the Turkish press this morning

08.03.2002


CONTENTS

  • [01] IN PRAGUE, SEZER REITERATES TURKEY’S RESOLVE TO JOIN EU
  • [02] ECEVIT: “THERE’S NO NEED FOR WAR IN IRAQ”
  • [03] INTELLIGENCE REPORTS: “IRAN CONTINUES TO SUPPORT THE PKK”
  • [04] MEETING SLATED TO DISCUSS TURKEY’S ISAF COMMAND
  • [05] TURKISH CONSTRUCTION TEAM TO VISIT AFGHANISTAN
  • [06] KIVRIKOGLU: “THE EU IS A GEOPOLITICAL NECESSITY FOR TURKEY”
  • [07] KILINC: “TURKEY SHOULD SEEK NEW ALLIANCES BESIDES THE EU”
  • [08] TURKEY MARKS WORLD WOMEN’S DAY
  • [09] BENAZIR BUTTO VISITS ISTANBUL FOR WOMEN’S CONGRESS
  • [10] AKCAN: “FIVE YEARS ARE NEEDED TO STRENGHTEN KEY ISTANBUL STRUCTURES”
  • [11] DERVIS: “TURKEY PLACES A HIGH PREMIUM ON EU MEMBERSHIP”
  • [12] IMF’S KAHKONEN CALLS MEETINGS “CONSTRUCTIVE”
  • [13] VURAL SEES BULGARIAN TELECOM COMPANY AS AN OPPORTUNITY
  • [14] SSSB REPORT: “IT’S NOW TIME TO INVEST IN TURKISH BANKS”
  • [15] FROM THE COLUMNS… FROM THE COLUMNS… FROM THE COLUMNS…
  • [16] THE EUROPEAN UNION AND UNCONTROLLED AMBITIONS BY TUFAN TURENC (HURRIYET)
  • [17] EUROPE AND THE MILITARY BY GUNGOR MENGI (SABAH)

  • [01] IN PRAGUE, SEZER REITERATES TURKEY’S RESOLVE TO JOIN EU

    President Ahmet Necdet Sezer arrived in Prague, capital of the Czech Republic, yesterday to pay an official visit to that country. Following a welcoming ceremony, Czech President Vaclav Havel met with Sezer. During their meeting, the two presidents discussed Turkey’s and the Czech Republic’s EU accession processes and reiterated their resolve to gain membership. They also spoke about the threat of terrorism. Sezer then met with Czech Prime Minister Milos Zeman and visited Prague’s old quarter. Havel hosted a dinner in Sezer’s honor that night. Speaking at the dinner, Sezer said that EU membership was one of main targets of all the Turkish governments and the Turkish nation. “Turkey believes that different cultures and religions will contribute to the EU’s richness,” he added. /All papers/

    [02] ECEVIT: “THERE’S NO NEED FOR WAR IN IRAQ”

    Appearing on CNN Turk yesterday, Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit said that even if Turkey didn’t participate in a possible military operation against Iraq, it would be greatly affected and tourism would suffer huge losses. “We are trying to convince our US colleagues that any such operation would deter foreigners from investing in Turkey,” Ecevit added. Ecevit also said that there was no need to another war in the Middle East, that addressing the current conflict there was enough of a task. Addressing his party’s parliamentary group meeting yesterday and apparently referring to recent calls for a national referendum on EU membership, Ecevit said, “We have no need for any referendum. Let’s look after our own business.” /Hurriyet/

    [03] INTELLIGENCE REPORTS: “IRAN CONTINUES TO SUPPORT THE PKK”

    A report recently prepared by Turkish intelligence units purports that Iran is still continuing to support the terrorist group PKK. According to the report, so-called PKK chairmanship council members Osman Ocalan and Duran Kalkan met with Iranian intelligence official Haci Ramazan this Feb. 18 in Urumiye, Iran. Ramazan allegedly stated at the meeting that the PKK should not halt its militant activities since it would never reach its goals through political methods. /Sabah/

    [04] MEETING SLATED TO DISCUSS TURKEY’S ISAF COMMAND

    Officials from the United States and Great Britain are scheduled to arrive in Ankara next week at Turkey’s invitation to discuss the proposal for it to take up the command of the International Security and Assistance Force (ISAF) in Afghanistan. During the meetings, Turkey wants certain points to be clarified before it undertakes that command, namely: The United Nations should layout the UN’s precise duty in Afghanistan; the quality and scope of the duty and duration and authority of the force, as well as its basic aim, whether to preserve or establish peace, should be clearly defined; and international funds should be collected to cover the cost of the operation. /Turkiye/

    [05] TURKISH CONSTRUCTION TEAM TO VISIT AFGHANISTAN

    Turkey is now preparing to send construction experts to Afghanistan to investigate the reconstruction of the region. The Turkish team is to arrive there on Monday under the leadership of State Minister Sukru Sina Gurel. The team’s mission in the region would include sweeping up mines, airport reconstruction and residential development. /Hurriyet/

    [06] KIVRIKOGLU: “THE EU IS A GEOPOLITICAL NECESSITY FOR TURKEY”

    Speaking to military journal Defense and Aerospace this week, Turkish Chief of General Staff Gen. Huseyin Kivrikoglu said that European Union membership was a “geopolitical necessity” for Turkey and that Turkey’s and the EU’s interests were parallel to each other. He underlined the need for Turkey’s participation in European organizations such as the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) and the EU. Kivrikoglu added, however, that there were still some European countries which support terrorist organizations who act against Turkey. /Hurriyet/

    [07] KILINC: “TURKEY SHOULD SEEK NEW ALLIANCES BESIDES THE EU”

    National Security Council (MGK) Secretary-General Gen. Tuncer Kilinc said yesterday that the European Union had never supported Turkey on issues concerning Turkey’s national interest, adding that Turkey should seek out new alliances other then the EU, such as Iran and Russia. Gen. Kilinc made the remarks at a conference at Istanbul’s War Academies Command, adding that he was expressing his own personal views. Speaking at the same conference, Istanbul University economics Professor Erol Manisali commented that the European Union would never either exclude nor fully include Turkey, but would rather always keep it waiting in the wings. /Hurriyet/

    [08] TURKEY MARKS WORLD WOMEN’S DAY

    Turkey will mark World Women’s Day with a number of activities today. In Istanbul, women will march and hold a meeting, and in Ankara, some 2,000 women are expected to gather for various festivities. In addition, panel discussions, conferences, shows and exhibitions will be held to mark the occasion throughout major Turkish cities. /Turkish Daily News/

    [09] BENAZIR BUTTO VISITS ISTANBUL FOR WOMEN’S CONGRESS

    Former Pakistani President Benazir Butto is scheduled to participate in today’s International Women’s Congress meeting, held this year in Istanbul for the first time, to mark World Women’s Day. She will make a speech to the Congress at the Cemal Resit Bey Convention and Exhibition Hall, and to attend a reception in Kadikoy as well. Upon arriving in Turkey, Butto told reporters that it was a great honor for her to be invited to the gathering. /Star/

    [10] AKCAN: “FIVE YEARS ARE NEEDED TO STRENGHTEN KEY ISTANBUL STRUCTURES”

    Public Works and Housing Minister Abdulkadir Akcan said yesterday that it could take up to five years to strengthen nearly a dozen key structures in Istanbul to make them more earthquake resistant. Akcan added that there was no problem in the delivery of a $100 million loan from the Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC) for that purpose. The key structures as determined by Turkish and Japanese technical experts include the Bosphorus Bridge, Fatih Bridge, both Halic Bridges, the viaduct approaching the Bosphorus (European side), both viaducts to the Halic Bridge, and two viaducts in Ortakoy. /Milliyet/

    [11] DERVIS: “TURKEY PLACES A HIGH PREMIUM ON EU MEMBERSHIP”

    Turkish State Minister for Economy Kemal Dervis, who is currently visiting Great Britain, yesterday participated in a conference with British scholars and students at Oxford University. Dervis remarked that Turkey had been able to revive its economy by implementing an effective economic program and pursuing successful foreign policies in the wake of last September’s terrorist attacks on the US. Stating that he believed new reforms were necessary for Turkey to join the EU, Dervis said, “The next 10 years will be very important for us. Turkish people place a high premium on EU membership, since it is the key issue which will determine Turkey’s future.” Dervis is scheduled to travel to London today to hold a meeting with British industrialists. /Cumhuriyet/

    [12] IMF’S KAHKONEN CALLS MEETINGS “CONSTRUCTIVE”

    In Turkey for a series of meetings as part of an International Monetary Fund review, IMF Turkey Desk Chief Juha Kahkonen said yesterday, “My contacts with representatives of the manufacturing industry and financial sector in Istanbul were very constructive.” Following the talks in Istanbul, Kahkonen proceeded to Ankara for a number of technical meetings. /Aksam/

    [13] VURAL SEES BULGARIAN TELECOM COMPANY AS AN OPPORTUNITY

    Transportation Minister Oktay Vural said yesterday that Turkish companies, including Turk Telekom, should be interested in regional telecommunication companies and added, “In this respect, I consider the Bulgarian Telecom Company [(BTC)] a real opportunity.” Speaking to the Reuters news agency, Vural said, “Turk Telekom can employ privatization and cooperation in our neighboring countries along with the private sector. We have the know-how, and BTC is an opportunity in this regard. In addition, there are 1.5 million of our kinsmen living in Bulgaria.” /Aksam/

    [14] SSSB REPORT: “IT’S NOW TIME TO INVEST IN TURKISH BANKS”

    Schroder Salomon Smith Barney, a prominent international financial consultant agency, stated in a new report on the Turkish banking system released this week that the time was now ripe for foreign investors to invest in Turkish banks since measures recently taken by the Turkish government had reduced risks in the sector. The report stated that the Turkish government had managed to improve the monitoring system in financial markets as well as the general structure of the sector. /Sabah/

    [15] FROM THE COLUMNS… FROM THE COLUMNS… FROM THE COLUMNS…

    [16] THE EUROPEAN UNION AND UNCONTROLLED AMBITIONS BY TUFAN TURENC (HURRIYET)

    Columnist Tufan Turenc writes on recent comments on Turkey’s relations with the European Union. A summary of his column is as follows:

    “It is certain that our next generation will remember Bahceli and Ciller with regret. Both leaders will be mentioned as politicians who sought to bar Turkey’s entrance into the EU. Those who support them will be remembered only as their followers. Membership in the European Union has the power to change Turkey’s fate. In June, Turkey will either receive a certificate which says that it belongs to Europe or the accession negotiations will be postponed indefinitely. That is why those who believe that Turkey’s future lies in Europe are getting increasingly concerned. In the next three months, Turkey’s fate will be shaped irreversibly. I do not know if Devlet Bahceli, Tansu Ciller and their followers are aware that they are harming the country with their groundless fears. The European Union summit which will be held on June 21-22 in Seville will be a turning point for Turkey. At this summit either a date for the start of accession negotiations will be set for Turkey, or they will be postponed to an unspecified time. If a date is set, there is no turning back. Turkey will sit at the table for full membership and at the end of the process will become a full-fledged part of Europe. From that time on, neither the EU nor Turkey can give up on Turkey’s EU membership. Therefore, fulfilling our short-term commitments to the EU before the end of March carries vital importance for us. If we cannot complete this, it will be impossible to get a date for negotiations in Seville. Are Bahceli, Ciller and their supporters who are obstructing this development either deliberately or unknowingly aware of this? Is picking up a few votes by saying we should execute Ocalan really worth forsaking our children’s future? Don’t they know that if Turkey enters the EU its unitary structure will be strengthened and it will take great strides only in 5-10 years? They must be fully aware of these facts. Then why are they opposing this membership and trying hard to miss this opportunity for Turkey, thus relegating it to stay as a Middle Eastern country? Insistence on retaining the death penalty means an end to the initiative. Therefore saying that we should abolish the death penalty after executing Ocalan is deceiving ourselves. In fact in 1984 Turkey, in a moratorium it gave to the European Council, guaranteed that death sentences would not be carried out. From that time on, no one has been executed. As Professor Bakir Caglar has pointed out, even if the European Court Of Human Rights decides in Turkey’s favor, execution cannot take place within the framework of this moratorium. If that happens, everything will be over, a fact which I believe both Bahceli and Ciller are aware of. Unfortunately, uncontrolled ambitions sometimes put personal interests agendas before national interests.”

    [17] EUROPE AND THE MILITARY BY GUNGOR MENGI (SABAH)

    Columnist Gungor Mengi writes on this week’s statement by National Security Council (MGK) Secretary General Gen. Tuncer Kilinc regarding relations with Europe. A summary of his column is as follows:

    “Yesterday there was an unexpected explosion on the road to EU. As the move comes from the military, it is of great significance. Yesterday in a symposium held at Istanbul’s War Academies, MGK Secretary-General Gen. Tuncer Kilinc said that Turkey did not receive any help from the EU and that the organization took an unfavorable stance on issues regarding Turkey. Then he added that he believed it would be more beneficial for Turkey to enter into new relations with Russian and Iran, albeit not excluding the US. Although he stated that this was his own personal view, it is impossible to believe that he was not influenced by the institution he belongs to. If viewed from that respect, are we to understand that the Turkish Armed Forces are against our EU membership under the present circumstances? The previous day, Deputy Prime minister Mesut Yilmaz, addressing the circles opposing the EU, had said that no one should ‘hide behind the military’ and added that the military was not opposed to the EU. Is Yilmaz mistaken? Are those hiding behind the military making the right choice? We believe that this is not so. While searching for alternatives, we must consider the common interests we share with the countries we are contemplating cooperation with. For example, do we have common interests with Russia and Iran in the Caucasus, Central Asia, Iraq or the Gulf region? Can the values we believe in help us in meeting with Iran against the same background? When our historic aims and aspirations are taken into consideration we can see that there is no alternative other than the EU. The latest intelligence reports show that the reason for closing the door to relations with Iran is not just a difference in regimes. A report disclosed yesterday said that Iranian intelligence was trying to convince the PKK to take up terrorist activities. Membership in the EU is a political decision and this decision has been made. The General Staff has repeatedly stated that it supported this decision. The military is disturbed by the EU’s inconsiderate stance vis-a-vis our security needs. Chief of General Staff Gen. Kivrikoglu said that our European allies supported terrorism directed against Turkey, some openly and some covertly. Many Turkish politicians are of the same view. The aim of the military is that we not conduct the negotiations in a climate of total surrender. That is to say, we should be able to convince the EU that Turkey is different than countries such as France, Portugal and Spain. At least it should be able to get the PKK and DHKP-C included in the EU’s list of terrorist organizations. The statement of the MGK secretary- general should be seen as a move designed to support strengthening the government’s hand. In fact the military also know what famous geopolitical strategist, and former advisor to US President Carter Zbigniew Brzezynski said, ‘The US is an insurance for Turkey’s security. However, Turkey’s democratic future is in Europe!’”

    ARCHIVE


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