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Turkish Press Review, 07-10-18

Turkish Press Review Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

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

18.10.2007

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

CONTENTS

  • [01] PARLIAMENT GIVES AUTHORIZATION FOR OPERATION INTO NORTHERN IRAQ
  • [02] ERDOGAN: “NOT BUSH’S REMARKS, BUT WHAT PARLIAMENT SAID IS IMPORTANT”
  • [03] BUYUKANIT: “TURKISH-US MILITARY TIES WON’T BE THE SAME IF THE ARMENIAN RESOLUTION IS PASSED”
  • [04] IRAQI PM MALIKI ASKS ERDOGAN FOR “NEW CHANCE” TO FIGHT PKK
  • [05] BUSH: “IT’S NOT IN TURKEY’S INTEREST TO SEND TROOPS TO IRAQ”
  • [06] TALABANI: “WE ASKED THE TERRORIST PKK TO HALT ITS ACTIVITIES OR LEAVE NORTHERN IRAQ”
  • [07] SYRIA’S ASSAD SIGNALS SUPPORT FOR CROSS-BORDER OPERATION
  • [08] AMID TENSION OVER TERRORISM, NATO MAKES CALL FOR MODERATION
  • [09] LEAVING ANKARA, IRAQI VP HASHIMI VOICES SATISFACTION
  • [10] BAYKAL: “WE’RE NOT AIMING AT WAR”
  • [11] CONSTITUTIONAL REFERENDUM SET FOR SUNDAY
  • [12] A PROPER DIAGNOSIS

  • [01] PARLIAMENT GIVES AUTHORIZATION FOR OPERATION INTO NORTHERN IRAQ

    The government yesterday got parliamentary permission to launch a cross- border operation into Iraq against the terrorist PKK. The motion passed overwhelmingly, 507-19. Except for the pro-Kurdish Democratic Society Party (DTP), all the parties in Parliament voted for the motion. During debate over the measure, Deputy Prime Minister Cemil Cicek said Turkey has the authority use its rights under international law against the terrorist attacks of the PKK. Cicek also stated the motion is meant for the benefit not of the ruling party but of the nation and people. /Türkiye/

    [02] ERDOGAN: “NOT BUSH’S REMARKS, BUT WHAT PARLIAMENT SAID IS IMPORTANT”

    Responding to US President George W. Bush’s statement that a cross-border operation wouldn’t be in Turkey’s interest, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan said yesterday, “I don’t know who would say such a thing. With a majority, Turkish deputies alone have decided. The important thing is what Parliament said. The decision belongs to Parliament.” /Star/

    [03] BUYUKANIT: “TURKISH-US MILITARY TIES WON’T BE THE SAME IF THE ARMENIAN RESOLUTION IS PASSED”

    Chief of General Staff Gen. Yasar Buyukanit, currently in Rome as the official guest of his Italian counterpart Gen. Giampaolo Di Paola, said yesterday that Turkish-US military relations wouldn’t be the same if the resolution on the Armenian allegations is passed by the US Congress. Touching on the recent statements of Iraqi Vice President Tariq al-Hashimi, he said, “Hashimi says he got what he wanted (during his trip to Ankara this week), but I don't know what he got. Did he go shopping? What did he do, what did he buy?” /Cumhuriyet/

    [04] IRAQI PM MALIKI ASKS ERDOGAN FOR “NEW CHANCE” TO FIGHT PKK

    Hours before yesterday’s parliamentary vote authorizing a cross-border operation into Iraq against the terrorist PKK, Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al-Maliki telephoned his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan to say his government is determined to halt the PKK’s activities on Iraqi territory, stressing the need for the two nations to continue talking. Maliki added that he had given directions to the northern Iraqi regional administration on this issue. “Give us a new chance,” he said. “I have a delegation to send to Turkey. Let’s do what should be done together.” /Sabah-Türkiye/

    [05] BUSH: “IT’S NOT IN TURKEY’S INTEREST TO SEND TROOPS TO IRAQ”

    The US is making it very clear to Turkey that it’s not in its interest to send troops into Iraq, said US President George W. Bush yesterday. “Actually, they have troops already stationed in Iraq, and they've had troops stationed there for quite a while,” Bush told a White House press conference. “We don't think it's in their interests to send more troops in.” Touching on the US House resolution on the so-called Armenian genocide, Bush said, “With all these pressing responsibilities, one thing Congress should not be doing is sorting out the historical record of the Ottoman Empire. The resolution on the mass killings of Armenians beginning in 1915 is counterproductive. Both Republicans and Democrats, including every living former secretary of state, have spoken out against this resolution. Congress has more important work to do than antagonizing a democratic ally in the Muslim world, especially one that is providing vital support for our military every day.” In related news, Bush telephoned House of Representatives Speaker Nancy Pelosi and asked her not to bring the resolution to a floor vote. /Hurriyet/

    [06] TALABANI: “WE ASKED THE TERRORIST PKK TO HALT ITS ACTIVITIES OR LEAVE NORTHERN IRAQ”

    Iraqi President Jalal Talabani yesterday said that the activities of the terrorist PKK were damaging the stability of northern Iraq as well as Turkey. After meeting with French President Nicolas Sarkozy in Paris, Talabani told a press conference, “We asked the terrorist PKK to halt its activities, or else leave northern Iraq.” On a possible Turkish cross- border operation, Talabani said, “I hope this won’t happen. Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s common sense should prevail.” /Hurriyet/

    [07] SYRIA’S ASSAD SIGNALS SUPPORT FOR CROSS-BORDER OPERATION

    On an official visit to Ankara, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad yesterday voiced his support for Turkey’s fight against terrorism. Assad stated that the terrorism in northern Iraq stems from the US. "We support Turkey's decisions regarding terrorism and the fight against terrorism," he said. Assad also emphasized that it is Turkey's legal right to make decisions about how to fight terrorism. /Sabah/

    [08] AMID TENSION OVER TERRORISM, NATO MAKES CALL FOR MODERATION

    Speaking with President Abdullah Gul on the telephone on Tuesday, just ahead of a vote on possible cross-border operation against terrorists, NATO Secretary-General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer made a call for moderation. “The real danger is failing to understand the anger in Turkish society,” Gul replied. NATO spokesperson James Appathurai said that during his talk with Gul, Scheffer stated that all sides should maintain moderation at a time when tensions are running high. Appathurai said that Scheffer had also offered his condolences for those who lost their lives in recent terrorist attacks, adding that he understands Turks’ sensitivity about the attacks. /Milliyet/

    [09] LEAVING ANKARA, IRAQI VP HASHIMI VOICES SATISFACTION

    Speaking to reporters before leaving Turkey yesterday, Iraqi Vice President Tariq al-Hashimi said, “I got what I wanted from my talks.” Asked if he had convinced Turkey not to conduct a cross-border operation, he said that Turkey has a right to pursue terrorists. He also added that the Iraqi government should be given another chance to halt the terrorist activities on its soil. /Sabah/

    [10] BAYKAL: “WE’RE NOT AIMING AT WAR”

    Following Parliament’s passage of a motion seeking authorization for a cross-border operation into northern Iraq, main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) leader Deniz Baykal yesterday said, “I hope there woun’t be a situation which requires our incursion into Iraq, and Iraq will take all the necessary measures.” He added, “We’re not aiming at war, but at getting results without waging war.” Baykal described the overwhelming passage of the motion, with full CHP support, as “a great consensus.” In related news, Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) leader Devlet Bahceli said, “After this phase, all the responsibility belongs to the government. I hope they can do what is necessary within the framework of the authorization given by Parliament.” /Milliyet/

    [11] CONSTITUTIONAL REFERENDUM SET FOR SUNDAY

    The Supreme Board of Elections (YSK) yesterday confirmed a referendum on constitutional changes will be held on Sunday, Oct. 21, as scheduled. Among other changes, the referendum proposes popular election of the president and shortening the government’s term to four years. /Sabah/

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

    [12] A PROPER DIAGNOSIS

    BY ISMAIL KUCUKKAYA (AKSAM)

    Columnist Ismail Kucukkaya comments on the motion passed by Parliament yesterday authorizing a cross-border operation into northern Iraq. A summary of his column is as follows:

    “The motion was passed by Parliament. I hope it will do some good and also that we won’t have to use it. Actually, it’s meant to put the advantages of a cross-border operation into reach without actually carrying one out. Turkey had to make this decision and it couldn’t hold back anymore. We needed to take a step showing our determination, and so we took it. Now it’s time to think and act with cool heads. Let’s start by making a proper diagnosis. Turkey’s greatest weakness is its inability to diagnose its problems properly. When we make decisions on the spur of the moment, swayed by emotions and speculation, we can’t reach any lasting solutions. We live in a country where almost all our domestic problems are also regional Mideast issues. Even our regional crises turn into feverish issues of world politics in which global actors intervene. In the final stage, our local problems turn into global crises, like the Cyprus and Aegean issues. Can we consider the terrorist PKK or, more generally, the Kurdish issue to be merely domestic issues?

    Terrorism isn’t only a security issue, but also involves foreign policy. Now everybody knows that it’s used as a diplomatic tool. But starting from this, we should reach an important conclusion: the PKK issue is now influencing our foreign policy and international relations. It boxes us in and makes us immobile. This is where the danger lies. So I consider the passage of the motion, which is a radical decision and a risky step, an opportunity to change the paradigm and liberate our policies.

    We need a large, comprehensive strategy. We should be able to explain the terrorism issue to the world and take measures calmly and clearly. As we started to make appropriate and effective decisions after long debate, our framework took shape: The military will fight the terrorists and take firm measures; the government will take a solid stance in its fight against terrorism; and the state will ensure coordination. But we should be careful, because one can’t get tough in every respect. A balance mechanism at Parliament may be needed. We need ‘breathing room’ put to good account at a proper time. I think Parliament is the basis for this. So the issue of the (pro-Kurdish) Democratic Society Party (DTP) should be approached very carefully.

    Today we should take a new approach to take effective foreign policy steps. What is Turkey’s position in the global system? We should decide. In addition, we should get out of this fix where our foreign policy is determined by attacks of the terrorist PKK, and then it should be positioned firstly in the Middle East and the Caucasus, and then in the European Union and Washington, in line with its priorities. If Turkey can take positions in the global system and determine its international relations and foreign policies accordingly, the terrorist PKK will be marginalized and terrorism rendered ineffectual. After we take this approach, the fight against terrorism will be much easier. Can’t you see the link between the terrorist troubles we’ve been facing for the last several years and northern Iraqi Kurdish groups’ positioning themselves the way I tried to explain? When we look at Kurdish groups’ ties with EU countries and particularly with the US, this can be seen clearly. Then we should look at the big picture calmly and find our place. The timing couldn’t be better. Let’s start the game again.”


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