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Turkish Press Review, 04-10-18

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

18.10.2004

FROM THE COLUMNS…FROM THE COLUMNS

CONTENTS

  • [01] NEW PARLIAMENT VOTES EXPECTED ON FORMER MINISTERS
  • [02] IN FRANCE, ERDOGAN TO PUSH FOR TURKEY’S EU BID
  • [03] GUL TRAVELS TO GERMANY SEEKING SUPPORT FOR ANKARA’S ACCESSION TALKS
  • [04] SOLANA: “TURKEY SHOULD JOIN THE EU TO CONTRIBUTE TO ITS SECURITY”
  • [05] EU’S LAGENDIJK: “TURKEY MUST BE PATIENT DURING THE EU NEGOTIATION PROCESS”
  • [06] SPANISH PREMIER: “THE EU WILL OPEN ITS DOOR TO TURKEY”
  • [07] GERMAN FM FISCHER REITERATES SUPPORT FOR TURKEY’S EU MEMBERSHIP
  • [08] MOLYVIATIS: “GREECE IS UNITED IN SUPPORTING TURKEY’S EU BID”
  • [09] EP TURKEY RAPPORTEUR EURLINGS PAYS A VISIT
  • [10] HUMAN RIGHTS CONSULTATION COUNCIL ISSUES SWEEPING REPORT
  • [11] TALKS CONTINUE WITH IMF OVER THREE-YEAR STANDBY PACT
  • [12] FROM THE COLUMNS…FROM THE COLUMNS
  • [13] MINORITY REPORT BY CUNEYT ULSEVER (HURRIYET)

  • [01] NEW PARLIAMENT VOTES EXPECTED ON FORMER MINISTERS

    Parliament deputies will elect new members of the assembly’s commissions on Wednesday. On Thursday, Parliament is expected to vote again on a previous decision to send to the Supreme State Council former Prime Minister Mesut Yilmaz and former State Minister Gunes Taner, for corrupting the privatization of Turkbank, and former State Ministers Husamettin Ozkan and Recep Onal, for approving illegal credit granted by Halkbank. The Constitutional Court had rejected the previous Parliament decision to try the politicians at the council because the ministers’ cases had not been considered individually. Meanwhile, the special Investigative Commission is expected to meet tomorrow to reach a decision on a corruption case involving former Public Works Minister Yasar Topcu and a Black Sea Highway contract. /Turkiye/

    [02] IN FRANCE, ERDOGAN TO PUSH FOR TURKEY’S EU BID

    A number of Turkish delegations are currently visiting Paris to tout their country’s European Union aspirations there as French lawmakers, known for their reservations on Turkey's potential EU membership, come off recent clashes over Turkish entry, discussing the pros and cons of starting membership talks with Ankara. Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan is scheduled to travel to the French capital on Wednesday, paying his second visit to the country this month. The premier is set to attend a conference organized by the International Relations Institute where he will urge French lawmakers to abandon their prejudices against Turkish entry. In related news, prior to the premier’s visit, former Foreign Minister Yasar Yakis is expected to hold meetings with French officials in Paris. /Star/

    [03] GUL TRAVELS TO GERMANY SEEKING SUPPORT FOR ANKARA’S ACCESSION TALKS

    Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul yesterday traveled to Germany for an official visit. During his visit, Gul is due to meet with his German counterpart Joschka Fischer to seek his support for Ankara beginning its accession talks with the European Union. Speaking before his departure, Gul said that he welcomed discussions in Europe concerning Turkey’s EU bid, adding, however that he hoped Ankara wouldn’t face any unfairness. “We couldn’t accept this,” he said. Following his contacts in Germany, Gul is also due to visit France, where a referendum is expected on Turkey’s EU bid. In related news, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan is expected to meet with German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder and French President Jacques Chirac in Berlin on Oct. 26. /Cumhuriyet/

    [04] SOLANA: “TURKEY SHOULD JOIN THE EU TO CONTRIBUTE TO ITS SECURITY”

    European Union foreign policy chief Javier Solana said yesterday that he supported the recent EU Commission progress report which proposed beginning Ankara’s accession talks. “I support the commission’s proposal,” said Solana. “Turkey should join the EU to contribute to our security.” Solana further praised recent improvements in Turkey in a number of areas, including human rights and democracy. /Cumhuriyet/

    [05] EU’S LAGENDIJK: “TURKEY MUST BE PATIENT DURING THE EU NEGOTIATION PROCESS”

    Joost Lagendijk, co-chairman of the Turkey-European Union joint parliamentary commission, yesterday counseled Turkey to be patient during its membership negotiations with the Union. Addressing a conference on Turkish-EU relations, Lagendijk praised Ankara’s recent steps to fulfill the Copenhagen criteria, adding, however, that there was still much to do. “EU concerns over immigration from Turkey will end when Turkey furthers its economic development,” said Lagendijk. /Aksam/

    [06] SPANISH PREMIER: “THE EU WILL OPEN ITS DOOR TO TURKEY”

    Spanish Premier Jose Luis Rodriguez Zapatero said yesterday that the European Union had been built on basic fundamental values, adding that the Union would open its door to Turkey. Speaking to Italian daily La Repubblica, Zapatero said that the new EU constitution would strengthen freedoms. “European identity depends upon certain indispensable values including co-existence, prosperity, and an alliance between rights and cultures,” he said. “Despite some difficulties, the EU is an alliance opening its door to Turkey.” /Turkiye/

    [07] GERMAN FM FISCHER REITERATES SUPPORT FOR TURKEY’S EU MEMBERSHIP

    German Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer is continuing to speak out in favor of Turkey’s EU membership bid. Speaking to this week’s issue of German magazine Der Spiegel, he said that after the current stage, any decision besides giving a date to Ankara to begin accession talks, including proposals such as a “special partnership,” would be seen by Turkish officials as a rejection. Stressing that Turkey would be a EU member in 10- 15 years, Fischer stated that he believed the Union would accept Ankara, adding that he was cool on proposals to hold referendums on Turkey’s membership. /Turkiye/

    [08] MOLYVIATIS: “GREECE IS UNITED IN SUPPORTING TURKEY’S EU BID”

    Greek Foreign Minister Petros Molyviatis over the weekend said that his country was united in backing Turkey's bid to join the European Union and also called for the resumption of bilateral talks to resolve lingering disputes between Ankara and Athens. “In Greece, there is no refusal of a European Turkey,” he told Greek daily Eleftheros. “Greece supports Turkey’s EU aspirations. Once Ankara has fulfilled all the criteria and commitments, it should fairly become a part of the European Union.” He also called for new talks with Ankara, notably to resolve a lingering dispute over the countries' common air and maritime borders in the Aegean. Greece warmly welcomed the European Commission's recommendation earlier this month that Turkey be invited to start EU entry negotiations. /Star/

    [09] EP TURKEY RAPPORTEUR EURLINGS PAYS A VISIT

    European Parliament Turkey Rapporteur Camiel Eurlings over the weekend met with Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul, Justice Minister Cemil Cicek, Interior Minister Abdulkadir Aksu and main opposition Republican People’s Party leader Deniz Baykal. Eurlings yesterday traveled to Diyarbakir for a fact- finding tour at the Strasbourg Parliament’s behest. After finishing his work there, Eurlings will then return to Istanbul to meet with representatives of minorities and nongovernmental organizations (NGOs). Eurling’s report is to be discussed by the EP’s General Assembly on Dec. 2 prior to the EU’s Dec. 17 summit where a final decision on whether to start Turkey’s membership talks is due. He told reporters that Turkey should focus on the positive aspects of a recent EU Commission progress report rather than being disappointed by its criticisms. /Sabah/

    [10] HUMAN RIGHTS CONSULTATION COUNCIL ISSUES SWEEPING REPORT

    The government’s Human Rights Consultation Council recently issued a sweeping report on Turkey’s human rights performance, criticizing such significant areas as the state’s traditional views of the concepts of minority and territorial integrity. The report has been presented to Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan. The council, lamenting how sometimes even the most innocent demands for the recognition of ethnic identity are seen as threats to the country’s territorial integrity, calls on the state administration to be more flexible on such issues. The report underlines that Turkey cannot make real progress without improving its viewpoint on minorities and allaying its paranoid fear of separatism. /Sabah/

    [11] TALKS CONTINUE WITH IMF OVER THREE-YEAR STANDBY PACT

    A visiting delegation from the International Monetary Fund led by IMF Turkey Desk Chief Riza Moghadam yesterday met with State Minister for the Economy Ali Babacan to continue discussions over a possible standby agreement for 2005-07. The two sides reportedly decided that under the standby agreement, the IMF would release $1.6 billion following each letter of intent (LOI). The negotiations are expected to be completed on Oct. 26. /Star/

    [12] FROM THE COLUMNS…FROM THE COLUMNS

    [13] MINORITY REPORT BY CUNEYT ULSEVER (HURRIYET)

    Columnist Cuneyt Ulsever comments on the concept of minorities. A summary of his column is as follows:

    “I was pleased by a report in yesterday’s Radikal. ‘A report by the government’s Minority Rights and Cultural Rights Working Group has called for a re-evaluation of the concept of citizenship in Turkey and for a new, multicultural, libertarian and pluralist model of nation to be taken as a cornerstone,’ said the daily. If somebody had said such a thing just a few years ago, he would regretted it greatly, but now such things are being uttered at the Prime Ministry. In addition, the report writes, ‘Now there is a move towards not asking a country if certain people are minorities there, but rather accepting that there are minorities in that state if there are certain groups distinguished in terms of ethnic background, language or religion and which consider these differences an integral part of their identity.’ If one tries to implement the Treaty of Lausanne without question, said Milliyet daily columnist Yalim Eralp,

    1. We’re insisting that the concept of minority is limited to religion. But under this, how can we defend our understanding of secularism? How can we say that we’re a secular nation opposed to religious discrimination? With this understanding, how can we call the European Union a ‘Christian club’ and accuse them of emphasizing the element of religion?

    2. If Kurds are an essential element, do we have to make Kurdish an official language along with Turkish?

    As Murat Yetkin wrote in Radikal, the heart of the report says, ‘Minorities are people who feel themselves different from the majority and considers this an indispensable element of their identities. The state itself decides whether or not to give them rights.’ I thank everybody who presented the issue more simply and to the point. I take offence at the concept of minority in the Treaty of Lausanne. We should move the word minority into sociology, where it belongs, in a world where anybody is in some way a minority, different from the majority. The state must give equal rights to everybody on a level playing field without discriminating between minorities and the majority.”

    ARCHIVE

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