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Turkish Press Review, 03-08-15
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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> e-mail : email@example.com <caption> <_caption> Summary of the political and economic news in the Turkish press this morning
15.08.2003FROM THE COLUMNS... FROM THE COLUMNS... FROM THE COLUMNS...
 TURKISH TROOPS MAY BE DEPLOYED IN IRAQ IN OCTOBERIf Turkey does decide to send troops to Iraq, reportedly this may not take place before October. Diplomatic sources said that this timetable is likely even if Parliament passes a motion authorizing the deployment. In related news, next week a delegation of officials from the General Staff, the National Intelligence Organization (MIT) and the Foreign Ministry is scheduled to make a fact-finding visit to Iraq. In addition, another delegation of Parliament deputies is also expected to visit the country to take the pulse of both Iraqi officials and the Iraqi people in the coming days. In addition, a group of representatives from nine Iraqi clans is due soon to visit Foreign Ministry officials in Ankara. /All Papers/
 GUL: “TURKEY WILL NOT WAIT FOR A UN RESOLUTION”Speaking to reporters yesterday, Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul said that it wasn’t clear if the United Nations would pass a resolution on establishing an Iraq stabilization force, adding that Turkey wouldn’t wait for the UN to decide whether to send its own troops there. The foreign minister stated that officials were continuing to examine the issue. /Turkiye/
 ERDOGAN URGES UNITED AKP FRONT ON IRAQ TROOP DEPLOYMENT ISSUEPrime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan yesterday reportedly warned the Justice and Development Party (AKP) Parliament deputies not to comment individually on the question of Turkey sending troops to Iraq, but rather to wait for the government’s decision on the matter. Speaking at a meeting of AKP founders to mark the party’s second anniversary, Erdogan said that his party should project a unified front on the issue. “We are carrying on our work on the matter together with all related organizations and making all necessary decisions and measures.” Asking deputies to wait for the government’s final decision, the prime minister added that contacts with the US were ongoing and that the government was in full coordination with the military. /Turkiye/
 IRAQ’S TURKMEN FAVOR TURKISH TROOP DEPLOYMENTEven as discussions continue on Turkey sending troops to Iraq, Turkmen officials in Iraq say they favor such a move, stating that Turkish soldiers would contribute greatly to establishing peace and stability. “Recent unfortunate incidents in the triangle formed by Baghdad, Felluca [Al Fallujah] and Bakuba [Ba’qubah] are distressing the Iraqi people,” said Iraqi Turkmen Front representative Ahmet Muratli yesterday. “Additional foreign forces are needed.” He added that Turkish troops made up the most experienced army in the Middle East. Kemal Beyatli, chairman of the Iraqi Turks Culture and Solidarity Association, said that Turkish troops have a tradition of aiding people in distress. In addition, Kirkuk Foundation head Izzettin Kerkuk stated that Turkish soldiers should go to Iraq so that Ankara will have a say in Iraq’s reconstruction and also to protect the nation’s interests. /Turkiye/
 NATO VESSELS ARRIVE IN ISTANBULThree frigates from NATO’s Standing Naval Force Mediterranean (STANAVFORMED) docked in Istanbul yesterday. Speaking at a press conference, STANAVFORMED Commander Adm. Philip Wirth said that STANAVFORMED was a NATO rapid deployment force acting under the control of its South European Naval Forces Command. Wirth noted that STANAVFORMED, which was formed with allied countries’ vessels in 1992, took part in NATO sea activities and maneuvers. Wirth said that since November 2001 they had been charged with preventing terrorism in line with a NATO decision upon the request of the United States in accordance with Article 5 of the NATO charter. He said that they shared their intelligence with NATO countries and acted in cooperation with domestic coast guard forces. Wirth added that they assisted all kinds of vessels in case of a danger, and also informed coast guard officials of relevant countries on the issue of refugees. There are eight warships vessels belonging to Turkey, the United States, Germany, the Netherlands, Britain, Italy and Greece within STANAVFORMED. The three vessels will depart from Istanbul next Tuesday. /Anatolia News Agency/
 RULING AKP CELEBRATES ITS SECOND ANNIVERSARYThe Justice and Development Party (AKP) yesterday celebrated its second anniversary. First top party officials visited Anitkabir, the mausoleum of Turkish Republic founder Mustafa Kemal Ataturk. Later, the party’s founding members gathered at Ankara’s Bilkent Hotel. Speaking at celebration ceremonies at the hotel, Prime Minister and the AKP leader Recep Tayyip Erdogan said that the AKP government’s priority was making progress in Turkey’s democratization. He stressed that social tensions were a thing of the past and that now an atmosphere of stability and trust prevailed, adding that the AKP would continue fighting corruption, a scourge which had plagued the nation far too long. “Our government’s foreign policy to date has been successful, and it will continue to be,” he added. “As a result of our successful policies, the oil pipeline from Kirkuk, Iraq to Yumurtalik in Turkey just began pumping oil for the first time since the Iraq war ended.” In related news, Ankara Mayor Melih Gokcek and two former opposition deputies, Nezir Nasiroglu (from the Republican People’s Party, CHP) and Mustafa Zeydan (an ex-independent), joined the AKP. With the two additions, the number of AKP deputies in Parliament rose to 368, a majority allowing the party to pass amendments to the Constitution without the need for opposition votes. /All papers/
 NOVELIST ORHAN PAMUK PROFILED IN WALL STREET JOURNALA profile of renowned Turkish novelist Orhan Pamuk was featured in the arts section of Wednesday’s Wall Street Journal. The article by Michael J. Ybarra notes the contrasting age-old minarets and modern skyscrapers seen from Pamuk’s Istanbul apartment, marking a dichotomy of West and the East, old and new, which is also reflected in Pamuk’s works. Ybarra also reports on the numerous awards and accolades won by Pamuk since his first novel in 1983, including this year’s International IMPAC Dublin literacy Award. So far his six novels have been translated into 30 languages, adds Ybarra, and his most recent book Kar (Snow) is due to be published in the US next year. /All papers/
 FROM THE COLUMNS... FROM THE COLUMNS... FROM THE COLUMNS...
 THE AKP GROUPBY FIKRET BILA (MILLIYET)
Columnist Fikret Bila comments on the issue of Turkey sending its soldiers to Iraq. A summary of his column is as follows:
“Statements so far on the question of Turkey sending soldiers to Iraq show that the government will call Parliament to an extraordinary session and submit a proposal on this issue. Remarks by Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul indicated that the government would do call Parliament back in September. Both the government and the General Staff are leaning towards sending soldiers. President Ahmet Necdet Sezer has put forth his views on establishing a legal foundation. He thinks that Parliament’s view should be taken as a basis. However, the Republican People’s Party is voicing its opposition to deployment at every opportunity. The AKP parliamentary group will determine the outcome of the proposal on sending soldiers. This time the government will try to head off the no votes.
When I asked Deputy Prime Minister Mehmet Ali Sahin how the party is leaning, he predicted that this time Parliament would accept the proposal. ‘My impression is that this time a consensus was reached at this week’s summit,’ he said. ‘Therefore I don’t expect any problems in Parliament passing the new proposal. As for the group decision, we have never taken a group decision concerning such issues as we haven’t found it necessary. I don’t think we’ll need such a thing this time either.’
Sahin also expects that this issue will be discussed during next Monday’s Cabinet meeting. As we see from Gul’s statements, Ankara isn’t hopeful for a United Nations resolution. However, it’s understood that even without this, the government is ready to go into action. The outcome lies in the hands of the AKP group. Its decision will be a test of Erdogan’s leadership and the government’s power to get things done.”
 ENIGMATIC NEW US AMBASSADOR TO ANKARABY M. ALI KISLALI (RADIKAL)
Columnist M. Ali Kislali comments on the new US ambassador to Turkey, Eric S. Edelman. A summary of his column is as follows:
“In the United States, the president’s nominees for ambassadorships are only confirmed after they get the approval of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. In their nomination hearings, the prospective ambassadors speak to this committee, telling about their lives, background, families, and their views of the country where they are due to serve. Afterwards, they take questions from the senators. Thus the committee and all related circles learn about the nominees’ character and personal views of their mission. However, the questions and answers posed to Eric S. Edelman, the new US Ambassador to Turkey due in Ankara today, were subjected to censorship. Neither Turkey’s Embassy in Washington nor the US government have made Edelman’s responses public, which is why we have yet to learn what he was asked at or told the committee, beyond his opening statement. Therefore, we lack clear information on his true thoughts about our country.
For example, back in 2000, we learned about just-departed Ambassador Robert Pearson’s thoughts on Turkey and the Turkish Armed Forces (TSK) after his Senate hearings and so had the opportunity to evaluate his ideas before his arrival. Now I look at Edelman’s opening statement to the committee, and see nothing but a collection of bland generalizations. He seemed to be trying to sit on the fence with clichéd statements about our country. He stated that Turkey was a ‘pivotal state’ for the region, adding that this meant a country able to influence both regional and international stability. Stressing that the US must fully grasp Ankara’s importance, Edelman also underlined that Turkey is a key actor in establishing stability in the Balkans, the Caucasus, the Middle East and Europe. In addition, he said he believed Turkey might play a significant role in Iraq’s reconstruction despite the recent crises and strained bilateral relations. These are all garden-variety generalizations incapable of satisfying our curiosity about his real thoughts.
Edelman is set to arrive in Ankara today. Now we have to wait and see. In time we will learn his real ideas. I hope he manages to evaluate the realities of our country without prejudice.”
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