|Wednesday, 11 December 2019|
Turkish Press Review, 02-03-18
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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 & Information Turkish Press Turkish Press Review >> Foreign Press Guide Summary of the political and economic news in the Turkish press this morning
 IN BARCELONA, ECEVIT, CEM VOICE OPPOSITION TO IRAQ INTERVENTIONTurkish Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit and Foreign Minister Ismail Cem stressed during their meetings at the EU summit in Barcelona last week that any military intervention in Iraq would greatly damage delicate balances in Turkey’s region. “Iraq does not pose a threat to any of its neighbors,” said both leaders. “However, any intervention in the region would deal a great blow to peace and stability in the region.” Speaking to the press yesterday, Cem stated that there were significant divergences of opinion on the Iraq issue among EU members. Cem added that the EU had made no decision on the issue since it did not want to give the impression that there were problems between the EU and the US. /Cumhuriyet/
 CHENEY TO ARRIVE IN TURKEY TOMORROWUS Vice President Dick Cheney will arrive in Turkey tomorrow as part of his 12-day, 10-country tour of the Middle East and Great Britain. The Iraq issue will be the main topic of discussion between Cheney and Turkish government officials. Cheney is also expected to warn Turkey about Iraq’s alleged chemical weapons program. Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit has said that he will reiterate that Turkey is opposed to a possible US military operation in Iraq. /Turkiye/
 ISTANBUL HOSTS WORLD TELECOM CONFERENCEThe 2002 World Telecommunications Development Conference organized by the International Telecommunications Union (ITU) and Turkish Telecommunications Council starts in Istanbul today and will run through March 27. Some 1,200 delegates from the 189 ITU member countries are expected to attend the conference held at the Lutfi Kirdar Convention Center. /Milliyet/
 87th ANNIVERSARY OF GALLIPOLI COMMEMORATEDChief of General Staff Gen. Huseyin Kivrikoglu issued a message yesterday to mark the 87th anniversary of the Gallipoli, a victory by Turkish troops defending the Dardanelles during World War I. Kivrikoglu said that the victory was a sign of what the Turkish nation could accomplish when the unity of its land and independence of the nation were at stake. “We are proud to celebrate the 87th anniversary of this triumph and the struggle in which the Turkish nation prevailed against the strongest countries of that period,” he stated. “The Gallipoli is a victory which changed the course of history and the destiny of the Turkish nation.” Meanwhile, the 1915 victory is to be celebrated in Canakkale today with a number of ceremonies, and Deputy Prime Minister Mesut Yilmaz is expected to be in attendance. /All Papers/
 CEM: “ISRAEL-PALESTINIAN SITUATION COULD BE FELT IN TURKEY”Speaking to state channel TRT 1 yesterday, Turkish Foreign Minister Ismail Cem said that during US Vice President Dick Cheney’s visit to Turkey beginning tomorrow, the troubling situation between Israel and the Palestinians should be discussed, with the goal of ending the cycle of violence. “If we fail to solve the problem between Israel and the Palestinians, then the conflict will affect the whole Middle East, and Turkey could also be affected,” Cem added. Cem also addressed recent discussions concerning Turkey’s path towards European Union accession and whether “alternative” alliances might be better. The foreign minister said that the paths were not mutually exclusive. “Turkey has two goals: European Union membership and being a significant country in Eurasia,” Cem stated. /Cumhuriyet/
 BAHCELI TO VISIT KAZAKHSTANDeputy Prime Minister and Nationalist Action Party (MHP) leader Devlet Bahceli is to visit Kazakhstan today. During his visit, Bahceli is scheduled to meet with the Kazakh president, prime minister, and Parliament speaker as well as Turkish businessmen. Bahceli is to return to Turkey on March 22. /Star/
 KIVRIKOGLU VISITS UZBEKISTANChief of General Staff Gen. Huseyin Kivrikoglu arrived in Uzbekistan yesterday as part of his current Central Asia tour. Gen. Kivrikoglu took in the sights of the cities of Buhara and Semerkant. /Hurriyet/
 IMF DELEGATION SATISFIED WITH TURKEY’S PROGRESSA visiting International Monetary Fund delegation headed by Turkey Desk Chief Juha Kahkonen has completed its first review in Turkey this year. Reportedly, the writing of Turkey’s Letter of Intent has been completed, with both sides agreed on it. The IMF delegation is reportedly satisfied with the government’s economic program in general, and it is expected to leave Turkey early this week. /Aksam/
 BODRUM TO HOST WORLD AUTO RALLY IN MAYThe Aegean coastal town of Bodrum is set to host this summer’s 2002 World Classic Auto Rally. Some 150 autos are expected to participate in the rally, which will be held on May 15-19. /Hurriyet/
 FROM THE COLUMNS...FROM THE COLUMNS...FROM THE COLUMNS
 THE ISSUE OF IRAQ BY MUSTAFA BALBAY (CUMHURIYET)Columnist Mustafa Balbay comments on the reactions to a possible US intervention in Iraq and Turkey’s views on the issue. A summary of his column is as follows:
“US President George W. Bush has recently ratcheted up the rhetoric on Iraq, calling Saddam Hussein a real problem who should be dealt with. We can easily predict that the current US policy on Iraq will determine how the global balances of power will take shape during the 21st century.
This time, the US seems to be standing alone on Iraq. The issue has three main parties: The European Union, the China-Russia line, and the Arab world.
No decision was made on the issue of Iraq at last week’s EU meeting in Barcelona. The EU has turned a blind eye to the issue for two reasons: 1) There are certain differences of opinion on the issue within the Union itself. 2) The EU does not want to cause any tension in its relations with the US.
Both China and Russia have publicly come out against any US military intervention in Iraq. However, the Bush administration has stated that the US could carry out a military operation in Iraq without the need for any support.
What mostly concerns Turkey is the future effects of such an intervention on the Middle East and the Arab world. US Vice President Dick Cheney is scheduled to arrive in Turkey tomorrow as a part of his Mideast tour. Jordan’s King Abdullah, Saudi Arabian Prince Abdullah and Egyptian President Mubarak have all voiced their opposition to any military intervention in Iraq.
What about Turkey? What is Turkey going to say to Cheney?
Both Turkish Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit and Foreign Minister Ismail Cem have recently been stressing four main points:
1) Any military operation in Iraq would not serve Turkey’s interests. We stand opposed to any such operation. 2) We are against recent attempts to establish an independent state in northern Iraq. 3) The most important Middle Eastern issue right now, an issue which needs to be solved as soon as possible, is not Iraq but the violence between Israel and the Palestinians. 4) The US is not playing its part to end the ongoing violence in the Middle East.
It is an interesting coincidence that Jalal Talabani, the leader of the Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK), will also be in Ankara during Cheney’s visit! Today’s US policy on Iraq cannot be evaluated as the continuation of its policies since the Gulf War. Let me stress what has changed since then. Before 1991, Turkey was among the countries which had very good commercial relations with Iraq. What about today? Thanks to the free trade zone in Jordan, it’s the US today which has significantly improved its commercial relations with Iraq!
 GOOD NEWS FROM EUROPE BY ZEYNEP GURCANLI (STAR)Columnist Zeynep Gurcanlý comments on the outcome of last week’s EU summit in Barcelona. A summary of his column is as follows:
“Nobody in Turkey thinks that our public’s support for EU membership will fall below 70%,’ said Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit during the Barcelona summit last week. Speaking both to European leaders and the Turkish public opinion, he said, ‘Turkey is a democratic country. There are many discussions going on in Turkey right now but Turkey will not, and can not, abandon the EU.’ Not satisfied with mere words, Ecevit also opened the door to a very important project in terms of integration with the EU, that is, the Istanbul-Dedeagac natural gas pipeline. Ecevit talked about this project during the opening day of the summit, and Greece gave its reply the very next day. Prime Minister Costas Simitis said that Greek Development Minister Akis Cohacopulos would go to Ankara and sign a preliminary agreement next week. This project is very important for Turkey’s EU membership as well. One of the biggest problems looming for the EU in the future is its energy needs. The European leaders do not want to be dependent on ‘a single source,’ that is, on Russia, and so are looking for ways to increase the energy supply to the continent. Considering the Turkish-Greek line together with the natural gas pipeline crossing the Caspian and the Turkish-Iranian natural gas pipeline projects, this project’s importance for Europe is more and more evident, and the line will make Turkey an inseparable part of Europe. This was not the only good news from the Barcelona summit. The second piece concerns the proposed European army. The EU leaders discussed the European Security and Defense Policy (ESDP) after Ecevit left Barcelona. Greece, which had objected to a Turkish- EU compromise on the ESDP, became isolated in its stance. Even the other European leaders criticized Grace somewhat harshly. Jose Maria Aznar, the prime minister of EU President Spain, complained that the EU ‘cannot move even one step forward’ due to Greece’s obstructionism. He gave the example of the international peacekeeping force that was established in Afghanistan within a very short period of time, and complained that Europe cannot even send soldiers to Macedonia under its very nose. Greece openly said, ‘All 14 EU member countries support the compromise that was reached concerning Turkey and the ESDP.’ The final notes of the Barcelona Summit were a kind of message to my fellow citizens who put forward the unproductive concept of nationalism and object to Turkey’s joining the EU. In short, the news from the Barcelona summit to Turkey was extremely positive. The European leaders also took several other important decisions in terms of the EU’s future during the sessions they held among themselves. Although these decisions may seem to be mere ‘details,’ all of them in fact were measures to increase ordinary Europeans’ standard of living and their level of education and culture.”
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