|Sunday, 25 October 2020|
Turkish Press Review, 02-11-07
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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> <map name="FPMap1"></map> Press & Information Turkish Press Summary of the political and economic news in the Turkish press this morning
 SEZER TO MEET WITH NEW PARLIAMENT PARTY LEADERS ERDOGAN, BAYKALPresident Ahmet Necdet Sezer is expected to meet either today or tomorrow with Justice and Development Party (AKP) Chairman Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Republican People’s Party (CHP) Chairman Deniz Baykal, the leaders of the two parties set to make up the new Parliament. At the meeting, Sezer will reportedly urge both leaders to publicly declare the vital importance of the Cyprus issue and to reiterate that Turkey forsaking Cyprus for the sake of its European Union membership bid is out of the question. Sezer is not expected to suggest a prime ministerial candidate to the leaders. Last week saw a public dispute between Sezer and Erdogan, whose AKP will single- handedly make up the new government, over whose duty it is to name the next prime minister. Erdogan is himself unable to become prime minister due to a political ban. The meeting of the three leaders has great importance in the interim period before a new government is officially formed in terms of demonstrating that Turkey has no power vacuum. /Milliyet/
 CURRENT CABINET MINISTERS HOLD FINAL MEETINGTurkey’s 57th government, formed by the Democratic Left Party (DSP), the Motherland Party (ANAP) and the Natonalist Action Party (MHP), and headed by Prime Minister and DSP leader Bulent Ecevit, yesterday convened its Cabinet for the last time. Speaking to reporters following the 40-minute meeting, the premier said that this government had been the longest-serving coalition government in the Republic of Turkey’s history and the one which had moreover worked with the most harmony. Stressing that the government had taken important steps on the road to Turkey’s European Union membership, Ecevit urged his successors in the incoming government to place great importance on this cause. The Cabinet ministers then paid a farewell visit to President Ahmet Necdet Sezer. /All Papers/
 ERDOGAN: “THE AKP IS A CONSERVATIVE, DEMOCRATIC PARTY”In an interview this week with German daily Die Welt, following his party’s landslide victory in Sunday’s polls, Justice and Development Party (AKP) leader Recep Tayyip Erdogan said, “Our party represents Turkey’s middle class, which is conservative and democratic just like us.” Stressing that the AKP didn’t include radical elements among its supporters, Erdogan asserted that his party’s rule would prove that Islam and democracy were compatible with each other. He also expressed his expectation of getting a date at the European Union’s Copenhagen summit next month to begin Turkey’s EU membership talks. /Turkiye/
 ERDOGAN MEETS WITH EU AMBASSADORSJustice and Development Party (AKP) leader Recep Tayyip Erdogan, accompanied by AKP Deputy Chairmen Abdullah Gul, Vecdi Gonul and Yasar Yakis, yesterday met with the European Union member countries’ ambassadors in Ankara. During a dinner hosted by the ambassador of Denmark, the current EU term President, Erdogan told the ambassadors that the work done by Turkey up to now towards its EU membership bid would be respected and that shortcomings in the bid would be rectified. He said that Turkey expected to get a date at the EU’s Copenhagen summit next month for its membership talks. “Turkey is further along than the other candidate countries. For this reason, it deserves a date for negotiations,” added Erdogan. /Turkiye/
 SIMITIS REPRESENTATIVE VISITS ERDOGANGreek Prime Minister Costas Simitis’ special representative Teodoros Satiropulos yesterday paid a visit to Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the leader of Sunday’s elections winner, the Justice and Development Party (AKP). After the meeting, Satiropulos told reporters that he had reiterated Simitis’ congratulations to Erdogan. “The meeting was fruitful as a prelude to the AKP leader’s expected visit to Athens in the coming days,” added the Greek representative. In related news, following British Prime Minister Tony Blair’s positive signals to the AKP, Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi yesterday stated that the Italian government was ready to work closely with the new government to be established in Turkey. /Turkiye/
 FOREIGN MINISTRY BRIEFS AKP OFFICIALS ON CYPRUS ISSUEA group of senior Justice and Development Party (AKP) officials were yesterday briefed on the Cyprus issue by Foreign Ministry bureaucrats. Following the briefing, when asked about AKP Chairman Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s statement earlier this week that the AKP supported the “Belgian model” for a permanent solution on the island, Foreign Ministry spokesman Ugur Ziyal told reporters that the new government would of course implement its own program and define its own priorities on foreign affairs. He added, however, that certain issues needed continuity as state policy. “On the Cyprus issue, I would like to reiterate that the Foreign Ministry supports Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus [TRNC] President Rauf Denktas’s solution proposals put forth earlier this year, envisaging a joint state on the island,” said Ziyal. After the briefing, the AKP officials voiced a change of heart on the Cyprus issue. Deputy AKP Leader Yasar Yakis said that Erdogan’s proposal had only been “inspired” by the Belgian model and that the model needed modifications before there could be any thought of adopting it on the island. /Cumhuriyet/
 BAYKAL TO MEET WITH SCHROEDER, BLAIR, SIMITIS IN WARSAWRepublican People’s Party (CHP) leader Deniz Baykal is scheduled to travel to Warsaw, Poland on Nov. 14 at the invitation of Robin Cook, chairman of the Party of European Socialists (PES), in order to participate at a party council meeting there. While in Warsaw, Baykal is expected to meet with German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder, British Prime Minister Tony Blair and Greek Prime Minister Costas Simitis, who will also be attending the meeting. Baykal will confer with the leaders on the European Union’s enlargement policy and Turkey’s EU membership bid. /Cumhuriyet/
 OZKOK MEETS WITH AMERICAN-TURKISH COUNCIL MEMBERS IN WASHINGTONChief of General Staff Gen. Hilmi Ozkok, who is currently in the midst of a visit to Washington, yesterday met with members of the American-Turkish Council to discuss a number of issues, including a possible United States operation against Iraq. After their talks, Ozkok also met with the representatives of several lobbying groups. Ozkok then flew to Tampa, Florida in order to tour the US military installations there. He is due to return to Turkey this Saturday. /Turkiye/
 RASMUSSEN: “THE EU WILL WORK OUT A REASONABLE SOLUTION FOR TURKEY AT THE COPENHAGEN SUMMIT”Speaking at the European Parliament’s plenary session yesterday, EU Term President Denmark’s Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen said that the EU would work out a reasonable solution for Turkey’s membership bid at next month’s Copenhagen summit. “Turkey will receive a date for its accession talks only when it fully complies with the Copenhagen political criteria,” Rasmussen stated. “Turkey’s accession hinges on this condition.” He also stressed that the EU had never demonstrated a biased attitude on Turkey’s membership bid and had evaluated it using the same criteria the EU applies towards the other candidate countries. “We will watch political developments in Turkey in the leadup to the Copenhagen summit,” Rasmussen said. “Turkish officials should work to prevent torture in prisons and set free people who have been convicted of thought crimes.” /Cumhuriyet/
 TUSIAD GETS ITALIAN SUPPORT FOR TURKEY’S EU MEMBERSHIPA delegation from the Turkish Industrialists’ and Businessmen’s Association (TUSIAD) yesterday visited Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi to seek his support for Turkey’s European Union membership bid. During their talks, Berlusconi reiterated his stated support for Turkey’s EU bid, and the TUSIAD delegation briefed him on Turkey’s current situation. Speaking after the meeting, TUSIAD Chairman Tuncay Ozilhan said that Berlusconi had supported Turkey at last month’s EU summit in Brussels and that he fully expected that support to continue at next month’s Copenhagen summit. Ozilhan added that there was no need for concern about the incoming Justice and Development Party (AKP) government since it couldn’t change the structure of the state. “AKP leader Recep Tayyip Erdogan will work hard for Turkey’s EU membership bid,” added Ozilhan. /Milliyet/
 MERRILL LYNCH: “TURKEY’S SINGLE-PARTY GOVERNMENT WILL LEND HOPE”The arrival of a single-party government will strengthen Turkey’s economic balances, said an economic analysis of Turkey released yesterday by international finance institution Merrill Lynch. The report stated that domestic and international markets welcomed the prospect of a strong government, adding that political stability would contribute to the implementation of further economic reforms. It also argued that the Justice and Development Party (AKP) was fully committed to continuing the current economic program and to doing its best to ease the concerns of financial markets. /Hurriyet/
 FROM THE COLUMNS… FROM THE COLUMNS… FROM THE COLUMNS…
 THE DEVIL LIES IN THE DETAILS BY SAMI KOHEN (MILLIYET)Columnist Sami Kohen comments on Justice and Development Party (AKP) leader Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s recent remarks on the Cyprus issue. A summary of his column is as follows:
“When he spoke to a Greek TV station about the Cyprus issue just days after his party’s election victory, Justice and Development Party (AKP) leader Recep Tayyip Erdogan seems to have forgotten the famous saying (especially popular within diplomatic circles) that ‘The devil lies in the details.’ That’s probably why he made remarks in favor of the Belgian model for a permanent solution on the island.
In his interview on Greek TV, Erdogan underlined that there were two different nations on Cyprus. He added that the AKP advocated the Belgian model which had previously also been suggested by United Nations Secretary- General Kofi Annan. The AKP’s program includes similar remarks on the Cyprus issue. ‘Our party believes that the Cyprus problem should be solved immediately,” says the AKP program. ‘There is no doubt that a permanent solution cannot be reached on the island in the absence of either recognizing the Turkish Cypriots’ presence and identity or ensuring their right to self-determination. We believe that establishing a federal state comprised of two different nations on the island would be beneficial for both sides.’
The Turkish Foreign Ministry is now quite concerned, since Athens has evaluated Erdogan’s remarks as Turkey’s official views on the issue and expects the new government to take significant steps towards the establishment of the Belgian model on the island. ‘Lame duck’ Foreign Minister Sukru Sina Gurel recently scolded Erdogan, accusing the party leader of being ignorant on the Cyprus issue. A Foreign Ministry spokesman also weighed in, stating that Erdogan’s remarks were not binding on the ministry’s official views.
There are diverse and even contradictory voices within the AKP concerning the Cyprus problem. Deputy leader Abdullah Gul two days ago confirmed that the AKP’s program included remarks advocating the Belgian model. However, Yasar Yakis, another deputy AKP leader, said that the AKP had only been ‘inspired’ by the Belgian model but had never considered it a permanent solution, underlining that certain changes would have to be made in such a model to make it feasible for the island. Foreign diplomats concerned with the Cyprus issue were surprised and confused by all these conflicting statements. I think it would be best if everybody waited to hear for the AKP’s official statements after its single-party government is formed.
The Belgian model, as a matter of fact, was previously suggested by Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) President Rauf Denktas and his advisors. In an address to the European Parliament, Ergun Olgun, one of Denktas’s advisors, recently stated that Cyprus might benefit from Belgium’s dual- ethnic experience. However, there is an extremely important detail here. Olgun underlined that Cyprus might benefit from the Belgian experience in its relations with the EU, but he neither suggested that the model might be completely implemented on Cyprus nor implied such. Prof. Mumtaz Soysal, another advisor to Denktas, yesterday stressed that the Turkish side was referring to the Belgian model only when talking about relations between the EU and the island, reiterating that the Belgian model could not be completely put into practice on Cyprus itself. In fact, the two separate nations in Belgium enjoy their separate identities and sovereignty rights in their relations with the EU. This is the very point which might be taken as a model for Cyprus. The Turkish side advocates the Belgian model for the island’s foreign relations and the Swiss model for its domestic affairs. However, the AKP’s current attitude on the issue seems to be considering the Belgian model a proper path towards a permanent solution. Let’s not be surprised if UN Secretary-General Annan suggests a similar solution proposal next week.”
 OUR EU TARGET BY YILMAZ OZTUNA (TURKIYE)Columnist Yilmaz Oztuna comments on Turkey’s European Union membership bid. A summary of his column is as follows:
“We congratulate the parties who made it into Parliament and even the losing opposition parties, for they skillfully identified the issue that should be Turkey’s priority. Previous leaders lacked this skill. We call them those who favor the status quo. They want our country to be governed just like it was in the past. Some people in Turkey even want to go back to the pre-1938 period, wiping away the reforms after Ataturk’s death. Turkey’s priority issue is obviously the European Union. We can call this goal ‘catching up to European standards and reaching the level of modern civilization.’ It concerns the future of all of our children and all coming generations. This is our goal of getting rid of poverty, solving our border dispute and developing our rich national culture. This goal can be reached by attaining a democracy based on human rights. This is the greatest project of civilization that world history has ever witnessed.
None of the EU member countries has ever become poor, divided and cut up into pieces, and they all have developed their national cultures. Erdogan and Baykal have started their work better than we expected. We’ve grown tired of politicians whose ambition, complexes and stale ideas came first and foremost in their minds. If these two leaders proceed carefully against those who could create tension and disorder, a peaceful Turkey can give birth to a miracle. Turkey’s potential power is so great, and our rivals know this. A host of inattentive leaders who were incapable of understanding Turkey’s power have caused us great problems. The EU will mean a series of radical reforms. Together, we can certainly traverse this long and narrow road.”
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