|Saturday, 16 November 2019|
Turkish Press Review, 07-04-25
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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
 ERDOGAN DECLARES GUL AS AKP'S PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATEAddressing his party's group meeting yesterday, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan declared that the ruling Justice and Development Party's (AKP) presidential candidate was Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul. "We have found a name for presidential candidacy as a result of latest evaluations and research and that is Gul, with whom we have walked and founded this movement together," he said. Erdogan noted that the government would continue to work with the nation until reaching bright futures. "We'll work day and night," said Erdogan. "We have a long way ahead and we gave promises to our nation." Stressing that there was much to do, Erdogan stated that being at certain posts didn't have significance for him. "The most important thing is to serve our nation," said Erdogan, adding that Turkey achieved great progress in last 4.5 years. Erdogan further criticized the stance of the opposition parties before the presidential election, saying that they became "crazy" during the process. "They didn't like our candidate," he added. "They didn't respect a person who was shown as a candidate through the nation's will." Later, Erdogan and Gul received celebrations of deputies at the group meeting. /Turkiye/
 GUL: "I WILL TRY TO ACT WITH THE NATION AND DO MY UTMOST TO REPRESENT TURKEY IN THE BEST WAY ABROAD"Speaking at a press conference after being declared as the ruling Justice and Development Party's (AKP) presidential candidate by Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul said that he appreciated both Erdogan and AKP deputies for showing him as the presidential candidate of the AKP, adding that Erdogan kept himself away from the post with his own will. "He preferred to stay in his current post, " said Gul. "Everyone will see that democracy will function." Upon a question what kind of a policy he would pursue during his post, Gul said that everyone had a style, adding that he would try to act together with the nation and do his utmost to represent Turkey in the best way abroad. "It's also inevitable to cooperate with foreign countries," added Gul. /Turkiye/
 GUL MEETS BAYKAL, MUMCUForeign Minister Adbullah Gul, who was chosen as the ruling Justice and Development Party's (AKP) presidential candidate yesterday, met with main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) leader Deniz Baykal. After the meeting, Baykal said, "We don't have the chance to support as the AKP didn't seek a rapprochement in the society." Also speaking at his party's group meeting, Baykal said that Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan's decision not to put his name forward for presidential candidacy was the victory of democracy. After meeting with Baykal, Gul met with opposition Motherland Party (ANAVATAN) leader Erkan Mumcu. After the meeting, Mumcu said that Gul's candidacy was an expected probability and that he would discuss the issue with the authorized boards of his party. In related news, Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) leader Devlet Bahceli stated that Turkey didn't deserve such a presidential election. Democratic Left Party (DSP) leader Zeki Sezer said, "Abdullah Gul's appointment as a presidential candidate is a complete democracy scandal." /Star-Hurriyet/
 REACTIONS TO GUL'S CANDIDACYThe ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) yesterday picked Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul as its presidential candidate. According to the European Union countries ambassadors to Ankara, Gul, who has talents of a statesman, is an esteemed, moderate person. European Parliament Socialist Group said that Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan made a good choice, adding, Gul had proved himself by his successful work during his term in office as foreign minister. US Ambassador to Ankara Ross Wilson said that Gul was a person whom they respect. Greek Foreign Minister Dora Bakoyannis said that it wasn't possible for Greece to comment on Turkey's domestic affairs and that Gul was a person who had an important role in Turkey. We have cooperated with him to date. Co-Chairman of the Turkey-EU Joint Parliament Commission, Joost Lagendijk said, "A logical and wise decision. Gul is a reformist and has many international links and this will be very important in a presidential post." Krisztina Nagy, Spokesperson of EU Enlargement Commissioner Olli Rehn, said that they respected Turkey's democratic constitution and the decision was in the appreciation of the Turkish Parliament. German Green's Party Co-Chair Claudia Roth said that Gul's candidacy was a very wise tactic, adding, "Although Gul is a conservative politician, he always demonstrated that Turkey was a moderate and liberal country open to the world." /Aksam/
 BUSH ISSUES MESSAGE DUE TO SO-CALLED ARMENIAN GENOCIDE WITHOUT USING THE WORD "GENOCIDE"US President George W. Bush yesterday issued a message due to the anniversary of the so-called Armenian genocide without using the word "genocide." Bush stated that every year on April 24, 1.5 million Armenian victims were being commemorated, adding that the world should never forget this. "We commemorate the past today and look at a brighter future," said Bush. He further stated that he appreciated individuals who were trying to normalize ties between Turkey and Armenia. /Sabah/
 BUSINESS WORLD WELCOMES GUL'S PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDACYThe representatives of the business world yesterday welcomed Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan declaring Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul as presidential candidate of the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP), stressing that Gul would contribute to Turkey's peace and political and economic stability since Gul also had prestige abroad. In related news, Sabanci Holding Board of Directors Chairwoman Guler Sabanci said that he appreciated Erdogan for his democratic stance in line with Turkey's stability. "I hope Gul's candidacy will be in favor of Turkey," added Sabanci. /Turkiye-Milliyet/
FROM THE COLUMNS...FROM THE COLUMNS... FROM THE COLUMNS...
 BEGINNING OF THE END OF KNOWN TURKEYBY METIN MUNIR (MILLIYET)
Columnist Metin Munir comments on Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul's presidential candidacy. A summary of his column is as follows:
"Following the election of Abdullah Gul as the new president, Cankaya, for the first time, will have a president whose Arabic is better than his English.
Turkey, for the first time, will have a president, Parliament speaker and prime minister emerged from the root of the same tree of Islam.
In the short term, we'll observe two results of this maneuver for eliminating the tension by nominating Gul instead of Recep Tayyip Erdogan's run for presidency:
The ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) will get the majority in November's general elections, and come to power alone.
Current economic policies will continue.
These two developments will be welcomed by the business world both in the country and abroad, and will cause a positive approach towards Gul's presidency. Due to these or similar reasons, the US administration and Western governments will also back his presidency.
In theory, Gul's nomination means that Turkey will re-experience stability in the next five years.
Is that happen in real life?
In my opinion, passing all levels of the executive power and function into hands of the AKP is the beginning of the end of known Turkey.
Process of Islamism
Turkey will enter a process of Islamism and rightism, the end of which cannot be predicted.
This is that Turkey which Parliament Speaker Bulent Arinc, during his last week's speech, asked people to be accustomed to.
Gul held a press conference a couple of days ago to announce Turkey's road map for its the European Union membership process in order to get support from the "seculars" and Western world for the presidential project, which was known only by few people then.
Now, after we learn about the project, its meaning is quite clear. "Don't become afraid of us. Our plan isn't Islamism. We'll continue to walk on the road to the EU."
The road not to Western, but Eastern route
People, who want, can believe this.
I want to believe too.
But, the AKP's appointments of only religious people to all high-level state positions, disregard to the red lines of secularism, as well as corruption and bribery which become widespread, and turning certain values of the lower class into norms, seem to be the road not to Western but Eastern route.
West begins at the place where secularism begins, and ends where it ends. Erdogan showed where he could stop by controlling his ambition through sending Gul to Cankaya instead of himself.
In the upcoming days, months and years, both himself and Turkey will need this characteristic very much. It is the time to test all people to understand how much they are democratic.
If I were Gul, as soon as I settled in Cankaya, I would send a bunch of roses from the garden of the Presidential Palace, picked up by my own hands, to Republican People's Party (CHP) leader Deniz Baykal. And I would attach a note on it:
'Perhaps I wouldn't be here, if you didn't exist. I and the AKP are grateful to you and the CHP.'
11TH PRESIDENT BY YILMAZ OZTUNA (TURKIYE)
Columnist Yilmaz Oztuna comments on declaration of Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul's presidential candidacy. A summary of his column is as follows:
"It has been clear who will be Turkey's 11th president. Candidacy of Abdullah Gul, the ruling Justice and Development Party's (AKP) Kayseri deputy, foreign minister, deputy prime minister, former prime minister, will be presented to the supreme will of the Parliament.
I celebrate both Gul and Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan and hope that his candidacy will be favorable for Turkey.
Gul will be initially engaged in foreign policy like former presidents Turgut Ozal and Suleyman Demirel. Both Ozal and Demirel pursued Westwards policies by establishing good relations with the US and Europe and by not disregarding anything to keep Turkish speaking countries together. Gul knows the commanders since he is a member of the National Security Council (NSC) and this will ease things for Gul. He will be the youngest president after Turkish Republic's founder Mustafa Kemal Ataturk and Ismet Inonu.
The group meeting which resembled a demonstration was held for the declaration of Gul's candidacy. The top posts will belong to AKP. Thus, we'll have active weeks and months. The final decision will be given by the nation. If the AKP doesn't get around 50% votes in upcoming general elections, AKP holding all top posts in its hand will be controversial.
There will be evaluations about the issue on April's last and May's first two weeks. Foreign media will also be interested in the presidential election. We'll also express our own views."
 THE PRESIDENTIAL ELECTION IS OVERBY GUNERI CIVAOGLU (MILLIYET)
Columnist Guneri Civaoglu comments on the presidential candidacy of Foreign Minister and Deputy Prime Minister Abdullah Gul. A summary of his column is as follows:
"The presidential election is over if it doesn't suffer an accident at the Constitutional Court. The following procedure will just be a formality. The eleventh president is Abdullah Gul. What will be written and told from now on may only contribute to the future. Let's start with the rhetoric of democracy. In France, 12 candidates ran for the presidential election. The first one got 31% of the votes while the second one got 21%. However, the democratic structure in France does not find 31% enough. Voters will flock to the ballot boxes for the first two candidates again and the one who gets more than 50 % of the votes will be elected the president. That is the democratic process! The number of the candidates is 12 there whereas it is only one except for the other non-functional candidate. The presidential candidates were evident months ago in France. All of them have been discussed by the public for a long time. In Turkey, the candidate became evident only in the last night, which means that the society has only 24 hours to discuss the presidential candidate. Moreover, in France the candidates were chosen in a fully democratic process in their own political organization. In Turkey, on the other hand, the candidate was chosen by the prime minister himself. So is that democracy?
This is, however, a problem of the ongoing system. It has nothing to do with the persons. After the elections were held in November 2002, the Justice and Development Party (AKP) became the sole ruler and realized the presidential election of this year beforehand. Now, that already-held- election will be realized just in form. This is a deformity of the system. The most important democratic revolution is to change the constitution and the laws so that the people can elect the president themselves, such as in France. It would be wrong to think that Abdullah Gül and Recep Tayyip Erdoğan have different mentalities. However, the difference between their styles is deep. Abdullah Gul has been trained at a rooted university in Turkey, the Istanbul University. He is an economist. He has a good knowledge of English. He also studied in England and perceived the imperturbable political style of that country. It is also notable that he told the main opposition Republican Party (CHP) leader Deniz Baykal that he would be an impartial president."
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