|Tuesday, 27 February 2024
Turkish Press Review, 07-02-02
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From: Turkish Directorate General of Press and Information <http://www.byegm.gov.tr>Summary of the political and economic news in the Turkish press this morning
 PM ERDOGAN: "ISTANBUL PAYS A HEAVY PRICE FOR MASSIVE MIGRATION"Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan yesterday attended the Governors' Meeting of Village Infrastructure Support (KOYDES). Addressing the meeting, Erdogan said that some outdated policies had resulted in discrimination against villages in favor of cities. Stating that these misguided policies had caused a great exodus from villages, Erdogan said, "Cities subjected to this great migration became huge villages. The chief example of this is Istanbul." Erdogan lamented how the migration hasn't been stopped despite many efforts to do so, adding that Istanbul and Istanbulites were paying a heavy price for this. He said, "We should ask those coming to Istanbul: Why did you come? Do you have a job? Do you have money? If you don't have these, why did you come to Istanbul?" /Cumhuriyet/
 GUL VISITS ALBANIAForeign Minister Abdullah Gul yesterday traveled to Albania for two days of talks with top Albanian officials. Speaking to reporters at Ankara's Esenboga Airport, Gul said that the government values the views of non- governmental organizations on Article 301 of the Turkish Penal Code (TCK) and that any changes to it will take cooperation. Commenting on the fight against terrorism, Gul said that this is the top priority of his government, adding that concrete steps would be soon taken against the PKK in northern Iraq. He also took reporters' questions on the plane en route to Albania. On a recent agreement signed between Greek Cyprus and Lebanon for oil and gas exploration in the Eastern Mediterranean, Gul said signing the pact had not befitted Lebanon. After his arrival in Tirana, he met with his Albanian counterpart Besnik Mustafay and exchanged views on ways to boost current ties. In related news, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan is also expected to pay an official visit to the country in near future. /Turkiye/
 GUL TO VISIT WASHINGTON NEXT WEEKForeign Minister Abdullah Gul is set to travel to the US at the beginning of next week. During his trip, Gul will have talks with top US officials, including Vice President Dick Cheney, his host Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, and National Security Advisor Stephen Hadley as well as some key congressmen. He will work to win their support in Iraq and for efforts to fight an Armenian genocide resolution recently introduced to Congress. /Star-Turkiye/
 TURKEY: "NO NEW SHIPS WERE SENT TO CYPRUS"Turkey reacted firmly to the oil game played by the Greek Cypriots by signing oil exploration deals with Egypt and Lebanon. Ankara gave its ships a command to go outside their routine duty zones, which patrol the Mediterranean within the context of Mediterranean Shield to fight human trafficking. Under this order, warships deployed around the island of Rhodes were redirected to near Greek Cyprus. Chief of General Staff Gen. Yasar Buyukanit told reporters that Turkish warships routinely patrol the Aegean and the eastern Mediterranean, but that no new force had been sent around Cyprus. "There's no need to send new warships," he said. Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul said that the deployment of the warships to the eastern Mediterranean was a planned and routine activity. /Cumhuriyet/
 TALAT: "GREEK CYPRUS' INITIATIVE IS UNACCEPTABLE"Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) President Mehmet Ali Talat yesterday morning spoke with newspapers' foreign policy editors at a breakfast in Istanbul. Commenting on Greek Cyprus' unilateral initiative to search for oil and gas in the Eastern Mediterranean, Talat said that the move was unacceptable. Stressing that the Greek Cypriot administration didn't represent the whole island, Talat said that there was no legal administration or government for the entire island and that an illegal government can't make a deal with neighboring states for oil and gas research. "We'll never forsake Cyprus or its natural resources," Talat said. /Milliyet/
 EXPLOSION AT TUPRAS OIL REFINERY KILLS 3A blast in a refinery of state oil company TUPRAS near the western Kocaeli province yesterday killed three and wounded at least five others. Preliminary reports said that five workers were poisoned by the blast. Ambulances and firefighters rushed to the scene and admitted wounded and poisoned workers to the hospital. Residents in the area were also being evacuated due to gas leakage risk. Cavit Aykanat of the Petroleum Workers' Labor Union (Petrol-Is) said the explosion occurred during the dismantling of an empty lead tetraethyl tank. /The New Anatolian/
 NATIONAL ANTI-DRUG CAMPAIGN LAUNCHEDThe Greater Youth Association yesterday launched a campaign against drug addiction in the country. Speaking at a gathering in Ankara marking the event, State Minister for Family Nimet Cubukcu said that much like the rest of the world, Turkey has seen a growing drug addiction problem. Stressing that drug addiction was a problem that could darken the future of young people and that urgent measures are needed to end it, Cubukcu said that all public institutions, the media and especially families have the responsibility and need to cooperate for the future of young people. /Turkiye/
FROM THE COLUMNS...FROM THE COLUMNS... FROM THE COLUMNS...
 A UNITED OR TWO-STATE CYPRUS?By Cuneyt Arcayurek (Cumhuriyet)
Columnist Cuneyt Arcayurek comments on recent developments concerning Cyprus. A summary of his column is as follows:
"Main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) leader Deniz Baykal, in his address to his party's group meeting, said that a solution for Cyprus based on a united state on the island was no longer possible, but that one based on two states has become inevitable. The main opposition declared this view at an unexpected time. What are the reasons for the CHP voicing its views on a two-state Cyprus when arguments about Cyprus still rage and the European Union intervened in the issue? Turkey is moderate and positive about a united Cypriot republic and rejects the Greek Cypriots' view that the Turkish Cypriots are a minority. It argues that Cyprus consists of two states. However, the Greek Cypriots haven't retreated from their policies claiming that Cyprus is a Greek Cypriot island solely under their governance. Baykal summed up the latest situation before declaring his two- state Cyprus proposal:
The Greek Cypriot administration, especially after joining the EU, has shown its determination to make the Turkish Cypriots accept its sovereignty on the island. The only thing to do at this stage is to bring the island to a point where two communities coexist on Cyprus. The solution is a Cyprus with two states!
Baykal hopes this proposal will be welcomed. We should respect what he has done, but first we need to look at the press. There is no sign in the media of a change in stance or policy. However, the person making this proposal is no non-governmental group or ordinary politician, but there's been no reaction to it, negative or positive, from the government. Though the government is neglecting the CHP's proposal, Greece's ambassador to Ankara visited CHP deputy leader Onur Oymen after Baykal's statement. Athens tried to find out the reasons for the CHP's declaration on a two-state Cyprus. The ambassador listened to the reasons and then left without making any comment.
The Greek Cypriot administration is playing a high-stakes game. Its initiative in the Eastern Mediterranean doesn't depend on depriving the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) of possible revenues from oil found and processed in the years to come. The initiative directly targets Turkey. The real reason is to destroy Turkey's exclusive economic zone in the Mediterranean! It's similar to Athens' continental shelf play in the Aegean! However, analysts say the oil set to be found -- $400 billion worth according to the Greek Cypriots -- is 2 kilometers under the Mediterranean and beneath the sea basin. TRNC Deputy Prime Minister Serdar Denktas said that the Greek Cypriots tried to find oil in 2003, but the foreign company which saw Turkey's warships in the area halted its exploration. The government has initiated diplomatic contacts with the states which signed contracts with the Greek Cypriot administration. Egypt put its agreement on hold, while Lebanon declared that they were loyal to the rights of Turkey and the TRNC. However, this couldn't stop the Greek Cypriots, who protested Ankara's initiatives. Under this negative development, will TRNC Prime Minister Mehmet Ali Talat still chase the dream of a united Cypriot republic, or draw up a realistic policy?
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