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Turkish Press Review, 05-03-30

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

30.03.2005

FROM THE COLUMNS… FROM THE COLUMNS… FROM THE COLUMNS…

CONTENTS

  • [01] ERDOGAN MEETS WITH TUNISIAN PM, DISCUSSES IRAQ AND CYPRUS
  • [02] GUL: “THE ARMENIAN GENOCIDE WAS INVENTED BY THE DIASPORA”
  • [03] GUL: “WE’LL SIGN THE PROTOCOL, BUT WON’T RECOGNIZE THE GREEK CYPRIOT ADMINISTRATION”
  • [04] NEW ARRANGEMENT RESTRICTS STATE AID TO PARTIES
  • [05] ANOTHER DEPUTY RESIGNS FROM AKP, FIVE JOIN SHP
  • [06] US STATE DEPT URGES TURKEY TO OPEN SEMINARY SCHOOL ON HEYBELIADA
  • [07] BAYKAL: “THE NATION’S OUTRAGE AT THE FLAG-BURNING ATTEMPT SHOULD BE PROPERLY UNDERSTOOD”
  • [08] DYP’S AGAR: “WE WANT TO BUILD A RICH, RESPECTED TURKEY”
  • [09] REHN: “ANKARA’S LETTER TOWARDS SIGNING THE ADDITIONAL PROTOCOL IS A POSITIVE SIGNAL FOR BEGINNING ACCESSION TALKS”
  • [10] GREEK FM: “NEW CYPRUS TALKS WILL BEGIN AFTER THE TRNC PRESIDENTIAL ELECTIONS”
  • [11] WB’S VORKINK PRAISES TURKEY’S ECONOMIC PROGRESS, BUT WARNS OF HIGH CURRENT ACCOUNTS DEFICIT
  • [12] OMER SABANCI TOUTS POSITIVE ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENTS
  • [13] FROM THE COLUMNS… FROM THE COLUMNS… FROM THE COLUMNS…
  • [14] EUROPE’S WEAKNESSES BY MUHSIN ABAY (TURKIYE)
  • [15] THE REACTION AGAINST OCALAN AND THE ATTEMPTED FLAG BURNING BY FIKRET BILA (MILLIYET)

  • [01] ERDOGAN MEETS WITH TUNISIAN PM, DISCUSSES IRAQ AND CYPRUS

    Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, currently in Tunis for an official visit, yesterday met with his Tunisian counterpart Mohammed Ghannouchi to discuss a number of issues, including bilateral relations and the Cyprus issue. During their meeting, Ghannouchi said that he was pleased with both relations and cooperation between the two countries, calling Turkey a “friendly country.” Ghannouchi expressed support for Turkey’s efforts to support peace in the Middle East. Touching on Iraq, Ghannouchi stated that there was consensus between Turkey and Tunisia on the protection of the country’s territorial integrity. For his part, Erdogan said that he was pleased to be the first Turkish prime minister to visit the country since 1989. Erdogan further added that he hoped Tunisia would support Ankara’s efforts for a Cyprus resolution. /Milliyet/

    [02] GUL: “THE ARMENIAN GENOCIDE WAS INVENTED BY THE DIASPORA”

    Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul yesterday met with his visiting Swiss counterpart Micheline Calmy-Rey. After their talks, Gul told a joint press conference, Gul said that the two countries enjoyed good relations and that that visit would help to boost these ties. Stressing that they had comprehensively discussed the Armenian genocide allegations, Gul called the allegations groundless accusations put forward by the Armenian diaspora to justify its ongoing existence. “We are confident in ourselves, and so have opened all archives to everybody for examination,” added Gul. In the evening, he hosted a dinner for Calmy-Rey and his accompanying delegation. /Hurriyet/

    [03] GUL: “WE’LL SIGN THE PROTOCOL, BUT WON’T RECOGNIZE THE GREEK CYPRIOT ADMINISTRATION”

    Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul yesterday said that it was out of the question to open Turkey’s airports and harbors to Greek Cypriots when Ankara extends the additional protocol to new European Union members, including the Greek Cypriot administration. Addressing deputies in a ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) parliamentary group meeting, Gul said that the government was decisively continuing its efforts on the road to EU membership. “We have not deviated from our target or purpose. Our accession talks will begin on time, and discussions on certain topics will be completed by year’s-end,” said Gul. Remarking that the protocol consisted of regulations to allow the free circulation of new EU members’ goods, Gul said that this didn’t mean the opening of airports and harbors. Reiterating that Ankara would not recognize the Greek Cypriot administration unless a settlement is reached on the island, he stated that a permanent solution would be reached only under the auspices of the United Nations, adding that Turkey’s ongoing support to the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) would continue. /Turkiye/

    [04] NEW ARRANGEMENT RESTRICTS STATE AID TO PARTIES

    After a compromise between the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) and the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP), yesterday a regulation in the Political Parties Law extending state aid to parties with a minimum of three seats in Parliament was abolished. The ruling and opposition parties joined forces to pass the bill in order to prevent deputies from quitting their parties and enabling state aid to their new parties. Under the revised rules, political parties will only get aid from the state when they received at least 7% of votes in general elections or they have a minimum of 20 deputies in Parliament. The Social Democrat People’s Party (SHP) and the Motherland Party (ANAP) will get “grandfathered” aid this year as both attained five deputies thanks to party defections before the new regulation was passed. /Star/

    [05] ANOTHER DEPUTY RESIGNS FROM AKP, FIVE JOIN SHP

    Ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) Gaziantep Deputy Omer Abusoglu yesterday quit the party saying, that the AKP’s actions were far from what it told the electorate. On the other hand, five deputies – Ahmet Guryuz Ketenci, Hakki Akalin, Ersoy Bulut, Zuheyir Amber and Mustafa Sayar – who earlier this week resigned from the opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) yesterday joined the Social Democrat People’s Party (SHP) ranks during a ceremony held in Ankara. Speaking at the gathering, SHP leader Murat Karayalcin claimed that the new members were not “transfers,” adding that Parliament had gained “democratic legitimacy” as a result of the five deputies’ decision. The latest distribution of political parties’ seats in Parliament is as follows: AKP: 359, CHP: 163, DYP: 6, ANAP: 5, SHP: 5, HYP: 1, independent: 10, vacant: 1. /Aksam/

    [06] US STATE DEPT URGES TURKEY TO OPEN SEMINARY SCHOOL ON HEYBELIADA

    The US State Department yesterday released a report entitled, “Human Rights and Support to Democracy: US Records in 2004-2005.” The report contained criticisms on freedom of religion and expression in Turkey. Stressing that Turkey didn’t attribute a legal status to Protestants, Jehovah’s Witnesses or members of the Bahai religion, it urged Ankara to re-open the seminary school on Heybeliada island and accept the “ecumenical” status of the Fener Greek Patriarchate. Pointing to improvements in human rights in Turkey, the report also claimed that certain problems still remain. /Turkiye/

    [07] BAYKAL: “THE NATION’S OUTRAGE AT THE FLAG-BURNING ATTEMPT SHOULD BE PROPERLY UNDERSTOOD”

    Speaking at his party’s group meeting yesterday, opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) leader Deniz Baykal reiterated his criticism of a recent attempt to burn the Turkish flag, adding that the reasons for the nation’s outrage at the incident should be properly understood. “Our nation’s outrage is a result of longtime injustices perpetrated against Turkey,” he added. /Turkiye/

    [08] DYP’S AGAR: “WE WANT TO BUILD A RICH, RESPECTED TURKEY”

    Addressing a meeting of his party in Mardin yesterday, opposition True Path Party (DYP) leader Mehmet Agar said that his party’s popularity in southeastern Turkey was growing, especially in places in need of services, adding that his party’s goal was for Turkey to become a rich and respected nation. In related news, Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) leader Devlet Bahceli said that Ankara should never make concessions on issues such as Cyprus and Iraq. /Aksam/

    [09] REHN: “ANKARA’S LETTER TOWARDS SIGNING THE ADDITIONAL PROTOCOL IS A POSITIVE SIGNAL FOR BEGINNING ACCESSION TALKS”

    European Union Commissioner for Enlargement Olli Rehn said yesterday that Ankara sending its letter to the EU signaling that it would sign the additional protocol to the Ankara agreement was a positive step towards starting its EU accession talks. “It also shows that Ankara kept the promise it made at last December’s EU summit,” he said. “This step will boost confidence.” In related news, Rehn’s spokesman Krisztina Nagy said that Ankara signing the additional protocol wouldn’t mean official or legal recognition of Greek Cyprus. /Milliyet/

    [10] GREEK FM: “NEW CYPRUS TALKS WILL BEGIN AFTER THE TRNC PRESIDENTIAL ELECTIONS”

    Greek Foreign Minister Petros Moliviatis said yesterday that after the presidential elections in the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) scheduled for April 17, negotiations on the island would resume. Moliviatis stressed that negotiations for the reunification of the island should begin on the basis of the UN Cyprus plan, adding that he hoped the talks wouldn’t fail this time. “My country is willing for talks to begin towards a final resolution,” he added. /Milliyet/

    [11] WB’S VORKINK PRAISES TURKEY’S ECONOMIC PROGRESS, BUT WARNS OF HIGH CURRENT ACCOUNTS DEFICIT

    Addressing a seminar on “Business Opportunities for Turkish Firms” yesterday, World Bank Turkey Director Andrew Vorkink said that Turkey has achieved considerable progress recently in sustaining its macroeconomic policies, but added that some risks still remained. “There is a need for caution on the high current accounts deficit,” he said. “Risks in the banking sector have been reduced, but we believe that state banks could be operated more efficiently by the private sector.” Vorkink further praised recent drops in inflation, adding that it was important to reduce the rate to 5% within a few years. /Cumhuriyet/

    [12] OMER SABANCI TOUTS POSITIVE ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENTS

    Turkish Industrialists’ and Businessmen’s Association (TUSIAD) head Omer Sabanci said yesterday that an atmosphere of continued confidence would be needed to ensure positive results from Ankara’s upcoming new standby agreement with the International Monetary Fund. Sabanci said that Turkey had scored important successes over the last three years and praised the country’s political and economic stability. “We’ve been successful in our fight against inflation,” he added. /Sabah/

    [13] FROM THE COLUMNS… FROM THE COLUMNS… FROM THE COLUMNS…

    [14] EUROPE’S WEAKNESSES BY MUHSIN ABAY (TURKIYE)

    Columnist Muhsin Abay comments on the European Union and Turkey’s membership bid. A summary of his column is as follows:

    “Turkey must be resolute in its efforts to join the ranks of the European Union and our government must not deviate from its goals towards this end, no matter what happens. I have little hope for the efficacy of Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s recent warning to Brussels, which underlined that if the EU applies double standards or hinders our negotiations, Turkey will continue on its own by considering EU criteria as if they were Ankara’s own principles and standards. The European Union is an unprecedented experience, as a superior structure made up of independent nation states coming together under a common roof. But it goes even beyond that. Each member state is obliged to adopt its national legislation to the EU acquis. Their parliaments, state institutions and courts willingly waive some of their rights and authorities and become subject to EU regulations. This is followed by the emergence of economic and social synergies, whose combined effect is greater than the sum of their parts. The ultimate goal of the Union is to become more democratic, transparent and effective. However, Europe’s economic, institutional and identity weaknesses and problems remain unsolved. Today, Europe’s growth rate is slow and its unemployment is rising. The European Constitution is in the process of being voted on. Lithuania, Slovenia and Hungary have approved it and Spain held a referendum before giving its approval. France is also expected to hold a referendum on the issue, which will be a critical event especially for our membership bid. Danish Premier Anders Fogh Rasmussen said that his country would withdraw from the Union if France rejects the Constitution. However, the possibility of the latter is higher than we’d like. Those who believe that Europe has natural geographical borders don’t want it to go beyond the Balkans. Those who believe that the Union must be a Christian club are even more conservative. These people want neither Turks nor Muslim Albanians and Bosnians in their community. I wish that the ideal of a more democratic, transparent, effective and powerful Europe wasn’t a dream, a mere fairy tale!”

    [15] THE REACTION AGAINST OCALAN AND THE ATTEMPTED FLAG BURNING BY FIKRET BILA (MILLIYET)

    Columnist Fikret Bila comments on his recent meeting with opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) leader Deniz Baykal and the issue of terrorist Abdullah Ocalan’s possible retrial. A summary of his column is as follows:

    “CHP leader Deniz Baykal underlined that the Justice and Development Party (AKP) government must be able to thoroughly analyze the public reaction to the indignity shown against our flag in Mersin. He also said that the public outrage wasn’t limited to condemning the burning of our flag.

    Baykal asserted that the public’s reaction is mainly against the government and its EU policy. ‘What the government couldn’t see was that there was already a public reaction before the burning of our flag,’ he said. ‘The events in Mersin only added to what was there. Our people have realized that the AKP government is incapable of protecting our values and interests.’

    The opposition leader then listed the reasons for the public’s wounded feelings: ‘The public has come to see that our relations with the European Union have turned out far more troublesome than expected. Our people feel they have been deceived. In fact, Erdogan and the AKP government also have the same feeling. That’s why Erdogan is so nervous these days. The EU hasn’t lifted a finger to facilitate Turkey’s membership, but imposed heavy conditions instead. Turkey has been forced to make concessions on Cyprus. Now they are talking about confederalism. The Kurdish and Alawi issues are also being brought up. Our national values and interests are being violated. Since our government failed to respond to these threats, thus came the recent General Staff statement.’

    Concerning terrorist Abdullah Ocalan, Baykal said that a retrial of Ocalan would insult and traumatize 70 million people, and continued: ‘No less than 30,000 people were killed, and the culprit was justly punished. But the EU is demanding a retrial. If the government intends to retry Ocalan, the public’s outrage at this will be louder still. The AKP has to act cautiously in order not to offend the public. Or else, the public’s response to Ocalan will be greater than its reaction against the indignity shown to our flag.’”

    ARCHIVE

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