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Turkish Press Review, 03-07-17

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> e-mail : newspot@byegm.gov.tr <caption> <_caption> Summary of the political and economic news in the Turkish press this morning

17.07.2003


CONTENTS

  • [01] GUL RECEIVES PALESTINIAN FOREIGN MINISTER SHAATH
  • [02] DENKTAS: “I MAY OPEN UP MARAS TO GREEK CYPRIOT SETTLEMENT”
  • [03] PEARSON: “I WISH SULAIMANIYAH HAD NEVER HAPPENED”
  • [04] BABACAN: “APPRECIATION OF THE TURKISH LIRA SHOWS THE PEOPLE’S CONFIDENCE IN IT”
  • [05] BOUCHER: “BOTH THE US AND TURKEY REGRET THE UNFORTUNATE SULAYMANIYAH INCIDENT”
  • [06] PARLIAMENT’S INTERNAL AFFAIRS COMMISSION APPROVES REPENTANCE DRAFT LAW FOR PKK_KADEK MILITANTS
  • [07] TURKMEN PROTEST EXCLUSION FROM IRAQ’S US-APPOINTED GOVERNING COUNCIL
  • [08] FOURTH TURKISH TEXTILE FAIR OPENS IN NEW YORK
  • [09] JUDICIAL RECESS TO BEGIN TOMORROW
  • [10] FROM THE COLUMNS… FROM THE COLUMNS…
  • [11] FROM THE COLUMNS…
  • [12] GUL’S POINT OF VIEW
  • [13] BY FIKRET BILA (MILLIYET)
  • [14] TURKEY NEEDS TO BE CLEARER, AND
  • [15] THE US LESS UNILATERALIST
  • [16] BY SAMI KOHEN (MILLIYET)

  • [01] GUL RECEIVES PALESTINIAN FOREIGN MINISTER SHAATH

    Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul yesterday received his visiting Palestinian counterpart Nabil Shaath to discuss a number of issues. Speaking afterwards, Gul said that they had discussed the Israeli-Palestinian dispute and possible ways to resolve it. “We also exchanged views on the road map presented in recent months to reach a resolution in the region,” said Gul. For his part, Shaath praised Turkey as a strong country in the Middle Eastern region, adding that he hoped economic ties between Turkey and Palestine could be strengthened. In related news, Gul confirmed yesterday that he would visit the United States on next Thursday. /Turkiye/

    [02] DENKTAS: “I MAY OPEN UP MARAS TO GREEK CYPRIOT SETTLEMENT”

    Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) President Rauf Denktas signalled yesterday that in a further gesture of conciliation, he could open up the TRNC’s Maras military zone to Greek Cypriot settlement. Greek Cypriots, whom we are “ready to accept as neighbors,” could repair their former residences in the Maras (Varosha_Famagusta) eastern coastal area, said Denktas. He added, however, that he had yet to make a final decision on the matter, saying he would first consult with his colleagues. Last week Denktas proposed opening Maras in return for TRNC access to the Greek Cypriot Lefkosa (Nicosia) airport, but he made no mention of that proposed deal yesterday. /Aksam/

    [03] PEARSON: “I WISH SULAIMANIYAH HAD NEVER HAPPENED”

    US Ambassador to Ankara Robert Pearson yesterday expressed regret over an incident earlier this month in which US forces detained 11 Turkish soldiers in Sulaimaniyah, northern Iraq. “I wish the Sulaimaniyah incident had never happened,” Pearson told the Turkish-US Business Council at a banquet. Relations between Ankara and Washington are like a ship that has set sail, and nothing will block its steady course, added Pearson, whose tenure as ambassador is due to end soon. /Milliyet/

    [04] BABACAN: “APPRECIATION OF THE TURKISH LIRA SHOWS THE PEOPLE’S CONFIDENCE IN IT”

    The recent great gains in the value of the Turkish lira against other currencies show the nation’s trust in Turkish money, said State Minister for the Economy Ali Babacan yesterday. Babacan made the remarks in Ankara, where he was listening to a group of tradesmen voice their concerns over the lira’s recent appreciation. Speaking alongside International Monetary Fund Turkey Desk Chief Riza Moghadam, who accompanied him on his visit to the group, Babacan said that Turkey’s floating exchange rate precluded intervention in the lira. Asked about the fifth review of the nation’s IMF- supported economic program, Babacan stated that it would be completed in a few days, but declined to give further details. The upcoming sixth review has reportedly been postponed to this fall. Babacan added that problems of the real sector needed to be resolved in order to ensure further economic development. /Turkiye/

    [05] BOUCHER: “BOTH THE US AND TURKEY REGRET THE UNFORTUNATE SULAYMANIYAH INCIDENT”

    The detention of 11 Turkish special forces by US troops in Sulaymaniyah earlier this month was an “unfortunate incident,” and both the US and Turkey have expressed regret over it, US State Department spokesman Richard Boucher told reporters yesterday. Asked whether the US felt any “guilt” for the incident, as the statement released Tuesday by the General Staff on behalf of the Turkish-US joint inquiry did not include any US apology, Boucher replied, “The statement expresses the joint [US-Turkish] conclusions, sentiments, feelings, thoughts and the joint appraisal of the situation.” He also quoted from the English text of the statement: “The US had noted Turkish concerns about American treatment of Turkish military personnel during the detention, and the Turkish side had noted US concerns about reported activities of Turkish personnel in northern Iraq.” Perhaps alluding to new committees to help resolve Turkish-US differences in the incident’s wake, Boucher later said, “We have worked out with Turkey ways of dealing with any issue that might arise [over northern Iraq] … we recognize the importance and sensitivity of Turkey … If there is something the Turks want to raise with us about what’s going on in northern Iraq, I am sure they will through the appropriate channels.” Boucher also confirmed that Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul was expected to visit Washington next Thursday and meet with Secretary of State Colin Powell. /Hurriyet, http://www.state.gov /

    [06] PARLIAMENT’S INTERNAL AFFAIRS COMMISSION APPROVES REPENTANCE DRAFT LAW FOR PKK_KADEK MILITANTS

    Parliament’s Internal Affairs Commission yesterday approved a repentance draft law designed to encourage militants of the terrorist group PKK_KADEK to lay down their arms. The terrorist group is still believed to have an estimated 5,000 trained fighters in and around Turkey, especially in now US- controlled northern Iraq. Commenting on the repentance law, Justice Minister Abdulkadir Aksu said the draft was not an “amnesty” law, adding that under the law militants who renounce their cause and surrender would be granted reduced prison sentences in line with their degree of involvement in terrorist activities. Aksu stressed however that convicted terrorist leader Abdullah Ocalan and other high-level militants of the group would not be eligible for the new law. /Cumhuriyet/

    [07] TURKMEN PROTEST EXCLUSION FROM IRAQ’S US-APPOINTED GOVERNING COUNCIL

    Iraqi Turkmen Front (ITF) leader Sanan Ahmet Aga protested yesterday the US failure to appoint any ITF representatives to Iraq’s new interim Governing Council, calling the exclusion of the Turkmen, the country’s third-largest ethnic group, “completely unacceptable.” Aga stated that to date the ITF had participated in all meetings of the Iraqi opposition groups, adding that it deserved at least three seats on the council. “There are over 3 million Turkmen in Iraq,” said Aga. “The US must immediately reverse its unfair treatment of our people.” /Cumhuriyet/

    [08] FOURTH TURKISH TEXTILE FAIR OPENS IN NEW YORK

    The Fourth Turkish Textile Products Fair opened yesterday in New York City. On the first day of the event, over 1,000 US prospective companies came to see the Turkish producers’ wares. /Cumhuriyet/

    [09] JUDICIAL RECESS TO BEGIN TOMORROW

    Turkey’s courts are due tomorrow to begin their summer judicial recess. Special courts will be available to hear urgent cases, while others will be heard after Sept. 8, when the new judicial year begins. /Anatolia News Agency/

    [10] FROM THE COLUMNS… FROM THE COLUMNS…

    [11] FROM THE COLUMNS…

    [12] GUL’S POINT OF VIEW

    [13] BY FIKRET BILA (MILLIYET)

    Columnist Fikret Bila writes on the aftermath of the July 4 detention of Turkish soldiers by US forces in Sulaimaniyah in northern Iraq. A summary of his column is as follows:

    “Most people have found the statement of the joint inquiry on the Sulaimaniyah incident released yesterday by the General Staff to be unsatisfactory. The US side expressed regret for its mistake during its talks with Turkey, yet opposed including a written apology in this statement. Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul yesterday said the mistake was on the part of the American side, noting that US military officials had failed to produce evidence supporting their claims. ‘They talked about Turkish soldiers and their alleged suspicious activities, but had nothing to back up these claims,’ said Gul. ‘We asked them to give us the names of the soldiers allegedly involved in such suspicious activities against the governor of Kirkuk. When no such names proved forthcoming, the world saw that Turkey was right. The US has accepted its mistake. Top US military officials looked into the incident. Deputy Defense Secretary Paul Wolfowitz is also due to travel to northern Iraq. I guess he’ll investigate the case as well.’

    Gul added that the US had taken action to punish the perpetrators of the incident which, he believed, was an isolated event rather than a result of Washington’s overall strategy in northern Iraq. ‘After the incident, we never lost contact with Washington,’ said Gul. ‘I spoke with Secretary of State Colin Powell over the phone to present evidence to him refuting the US claims.’

    Gul has recently been criticized for leaving unchanged his plans to visit Washington in the wake of the Sulaimaniyah incident, but he believes his visit will be in Turkey’s best interests. ‘It would be wrong for me to cancel my visit,’ said Gul. ‘The US was offended when Turkey refused to authorize US troop deployments prior to the Iraq war, but then Powell paid a visit to Ankara anyway. It will be in our best interests if I go there to discuss our common problems face-to-face.’

    Our foreign minister also stressed that the two sides had agreed to set up committees aimed at preventing any recurrence of such events. Although the US didn’t openly express regret over the incident, clearly Washington is ashamed. As a matter of fact, this is not the first time, and won’t be the last. Washington is losing its credibility.”

    [14] TURKEY NEEDS TO BE CLEARER, AND

    [15] THE US LESS UNILATERALIST

    [16] BY SAMI KOHEN (MILLIYET)

    Columnist Sami Kohen comments on possible reasons behind the Sulaimaniyah incident and the path ahead for Turkey and the US. A summary of his column is as follows:

    “The US’ actions in the Sulaimaniyah incident were clearly mistaken. Nothing can justify them and the Turkish public won’t easily forget this. However, the ‘regret’ expressed in yesterday’s joint declaration and by US Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld won’t be enough to heal Turkey’s hurt and anger. The reasons behind the operation against Turkish special forces troops in Sulaimaniyah are not yet known. The joint statement released in Ankara mentioned the ‘Turkish personnel’s reported activities.’ Before this, certain US officials had also brought up Turkish special forces’ alleged ‘illegal activities in northern Iraq’ in a confusing way. Americans also say that Turkish troops had ties with northern Iraq’s Turkmen. Consequently, the true nature of the situation which led to the Sulaimaniyah incident is unknown.

    According to the joint statement, Turkey and the US have reached an agreement to share information as well as for establishing cooperation and coordination. Does this mean that new ‘red lines’ will be determined on Ankara’s support for the Turkmen and that new strategies will be established in coordination with the US? Actually both Ankara’s northern Iraq policy and how it’s implemented suffer from a lack of clarity. Now Ankara must establish strategies that keep pace with the new realities of the region.

    Iraq and particularly northern Iraq have become a guiding element in Turkish-US relations. Ankara and Washington should work to get a good handle on their policies on Iraq. Speaking at a meeting hosted by the Foreign Economic Relations Board (DEIK) yesterday, Martin Indyk, director of US think tank the Brookings Institution’s Center for Middle East Policy, stated that as Turkey and the US share a great many common interests, it would be a mistake for them to spoil their ties over Iraq and that therefore, strategic cooperation should be established between Turkey and the US on Iraq, and particularly northern Iraq. However, the US has a tendency to implement its decisions on Iraq arrogantly and unilaterally. On this issue, Indyk said, ‘It’s true that the Bush administration is conducting itself arrogantly and unilaterally. Therefore we’re hurting our allies such as Turkey. The US should act more modestly and should cooperate more.’ Indyk said that the US could change its stance in this direction, adding, ‘The problems we’re facing in Iraq are showing Washington that it should work with key allies like Turkey, and this will cause a shift in its stance’.”

    ARCHIVE

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