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Turkish Press Review, 03-10-16
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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
16.10.2003FROM THE COLUMNS … FROM THE COLUMNS … FROM THE COLUMNS
 SEZER GOES TO MALAYSIA FOR OIC MEETINGPresident Ahment Necdet Sezer flew yesterday to Malaysia to attend the Organization for the Islamic Conference (OIC) heads of state and government summit scheduled to begin today. A draft resolution on Iraq, already approved at this week’s OIC foreign minister’s meeting, urges the United Nations to play a central role in postwar Iraq, adding that sovereignty should be returned to the Iraqi people as soon as possible. The resolution is also expected to condemn this week’s suicide bombing outside the Turkish Embassy in Baghdad. Meanwhile, at a press conference on the sidelines of the OIC meetings, members of Iraq’s Governing Council expressed opposition to the deployment of more foreign troops in their country. The council itself has yet to take an official stance on Turkey’s proposed troop deployment. /Hurriyet/
 ERDOGAN TRAVELS TO BRUSSELSPrime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan yesterday flew to Brussels to attend a European Union gathering. During his visit, Erdogan is also set to hold bilateral meetings with his European counterparts to discuss Turkey’s EU membership bid. /Cumhuriyet/
 GUL DISCUSSES IRAQ WITH ARAB LEAGUE HEADForeign Minister Abdullah Gul, who is currently in Malaysia to attend a Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC) meeting, yesterday met with Arab League Secretary-General Amr Musa to discuss a number of issues, including recent developments in Iraq. During their talks, Gul said that the Arab world should take an active role on Iraq. “It’s a part of the Arab world, so merely sitting and watching developments there isn’t right,” said the foreign minister. Gul added that no one would sway Turkey’s determination to contribute to Iraq’s stability. /Aksam/
 TUZMEN: “THE BAGHDAD BOMBING INCIDENT WON’T HURT TURKEY’S EXPORTS”State Minister Kursat Tuzmen yesterday branded the bombing this week near the entrance to the Turkish Embassy in Baghdad a “provocation,” adding that it would not dent Turkey’s exports to that country. /Cumhuriyet/
 RICE: “TURKISH TROOP DEPLOYMENT IS A SENSITIVE MATTER”Speaking to reporters yesterday, US National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice said that Turkish troop deployment in Iraq was a “sensitive matter,” adding, “We appreciate Turkey’s efforts on this and we are continuing our contacts with them.” Stressing that in addition to Turks, US officials were also holding meetings with Iraqis, Rice said, “We’ll see what the result will be. For the time being, we are continuing our contacts with all sides.” In related news, White House spokesman Scott McClellan said yesterday that US administrator in Iraq Paul Bremer and other officials were holding direct meetings with Iraqi Governing Council members on the matter, adding that detailed talks with Turkish officials were continuing as well. /Sabah/
 KURDISH OFFICIAL WARNS OF CLASHES WITH TURKISH TROOPSHamid Efendi, a minister in the regional Kurdish assembly in northern Iraq, yesterday said that if Turks travel to Iraq via northern Iraq, clashes between Turkish troops and Kurdish forces might occur. At a press conference earlier this week, Turkish Deputy Chief of General Staff Gen. Ilker Basbug stated that if Ankara sends troops to Iraq, they will pass through northern Iraq, adding that any attack on the troops by Kurds would be met by a “necessary response.” /Turkiye/
 RECTORS VISIT ERDOGAN OVER EDUCATION BILLA delegation of university rectors led by Ayhan Alkis yesterday visited Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) Group Deputy Chairman Faruk Celik, and Parliament’s Education Commission head Tayyar Altikulac. During their meetings, a controversial bill involving regulations for professional education high schools – including religious schools – at university entrance examinations as well as a new Board of Higher Education (YOK) bill were taken up. The rectors urged the government to postpone the bill on professional schools, while the government officials called on rectors to speed up work on the new YOK bill. /Hurriyet/
 SIXTH IMF REVIEW COMPLETED, MOGHADAM PRAISES PROGRAM’S POSITIVE RESULTSThe sixth review of Turkey’s International Monetary Fund-supported economic program was officially completed yesterday. Speaking to a press conference, State Minister for the Economy Ali Babacan called this year’s 5% growth target easily achievable, adding that inflation would even fall below 20%. Babacan said that Turkey and the IMF had agreed on the 2004 budget and that the drafting of a new letter of intent (LOI) would also begin soon. Also touching on a recent $8.5 billion US loan deal, Babacan said that negotiations on details of the loan were continuing. For his part, IMF Turkey Desk Chief Riza Moghadam hailed the positive results of the economic program and seconded Babacan’s prediction of inflation below 20%. Moghadam stated that the economy’s sensitivity to foreign developments had been cushioned by a rise in foreign exchange reserves. “If the program’s determined implementation continues, then Ankara’s high debt stock and interest rates, sensitivity to shocks, and inflation will be reduced even further,” he added. /Milliyet/
 TWO TURKISH TEAMS BEAT RIVALS IN UEFA CUP ACTIONTwo of the four Turkish teams vying for football’s UEFA Cup yesterday advanced to the second round of competition. Gaziantep defeated Hapoel Tel Aviv, and Gencler Birligi was victorious against Australian side Blackburn. /All papers/
 FROM THE COLUMNS … FROM THE COLUMNS … FROM THE COLUMNS
 A FEW QUESTIONS FROM THE EU BY CUNEYT ULSEVER (HURRIYET)Columnist Cuneyt Ulsever writes on Turkey’s EU membership process. A summary of his column is as follows:
“Membership in the European Union is Turkey’s most far-reaching project for the 21st century. Europeans who attended a recent meeting on ‘Turkey, Germany and the Future of the European Union’ organized by the German Foreign Ministry and Ankara’s German Embassy raised a series of critical questions on our membership process:
1) Are Turks European?
All the attendees agreed that Europeans believe the answer to be an emphatic no, as their familiarity is limited to Turks who migrate to the continent from Anatolia’s small towns and villages. Unfortunately, they aren’t aware that most Turks are much more modern and European than these emigres. Our European friends underlined that Ankara must put forth more efforts to promote its true face in Europe.
2) Will Turkey manage to put into practice the reform packages our Parliament successfully passed?
Everybody agrees that our Parliament was very successful in its recent approval of reform packages. However, they’re not sure whether Ankara has taken all necessary measures to resolve the Kurdish issue and to minimize the role of the military in civilian politics. Europeans believe that needed regulations to implement these reforms are still lacking, and so the old mentality of doing things persists in earnest.
3) Will the Cyprus issue be resolved?
Politicians in particular are remarking that if the Cyprus issue isn’t resolved until by next May, when the Greek Cypriots are to join the EU ranks, then Turkey should forget about getting a date for its membership negotiations in December 2004. They hope that opposition parties will win this December’s elections in Northern Cyprus, a development, they hope will lead to key changes on the island.
4) Does Europe need Turkey?
Certain politicians stated frankly that the decision the EU is set to make on Turkey in 2004 will indeed be a political one. If the 25 EU members agree then that Europe doesn’t need Turkey, Ankara will once again have to forget about its EU membership hopes.
In brief, our time is short, but our path remains too long!”
 IRAQ AND THE US BY TAHA AKYOL (MILLIYET)Columnist Taha Akyol comments on the relationship between Iraq and the US. A summary of his column is as follows:
“This week’s suicide bombing outside the Turkish Embassy in Baghdad seems to be the work of ‘radical Arabs.’ The Iraqi Kurdish leaders Barzani and Talabani have peshmerga forces, but they lack the culture, practice or personnel for suicide bombings. The Arabs, however, have all three. This incident caused great excitement among Islamic Arabs who are also secular nationalists. Iraq has seen many such bomb attacks recently, with Tuesday’s attack being only the latest example. Earlier there was an attack against the UN headquarters in Baghdad, which shows that the aim of these attacks is to head off stability in Iraq and to turn the country into a hell of terrorism and anarchy. They must be dreaming of the return of Saddam Hussein and setting up a Sunni or Shiite theocratic regime.
Meanwhile, Turkey is planning to send its soldiers precisely in order to prevent Iraq from becoming a hell of terrorism and anarchy, as this would be a unique opportunity for PKK_KADEK and could also cause an Iraq civil war in Iraq which might engulf the entire region. Turkey wants to prevent this, and therefore it won’t give up just because there was a bomb attack, because the terrorists’ real aim is to scare off and dissuade Turkey. If Turkey retreats now, it will look like a country which has been scared and dissuaded. So is Turkey obliged to send its soldiers to Iraq? No! It can send its soldiers if doing so would protect its military interests. If the US doesn’t support Turkey’s strategic interests, Ankara shouldn’t send its soldiers.
When Turkey passed the deployment motion, shouldn’t the US have started negotiations in Ankara? But they aren’t here yet. ‘The deployment of Turkish soldiers is a sensitive issue,’ said National Security Advisor Condoleezza Rice yesterday. ‘We’re meeting with both [Turkish and Iraqi] parties and we’ll see the result.’ I guess they’re looking for a way for Turkey to enter Iraq without bothering Barzani and Talabani. If Turkey assumes the risk of facing attacks, conflicts and sabotage, the only path in would be northern Iraq. Turkish soldiers will use the same road on which food, clothes and fuel for US troops are sent through Turkey. The US considers the Kurds as its only support within Iraq. However, it doesn’t see that its biased stance is causing reaction among the Arabs, alienating Kurds in the country and sowing doubts in countries in the region. The US should be more reasonable and reliable.”
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