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Turkish Press Review, 07-12-25

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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

25.12.2007


CONTENTS

  • [01] GUL ISSUES MESSAGE MARKING CHRISTMAS
  • [02] BUSH: “THE PKK IS OUR COMMON ENEMY”
  • [03] CICEK: “THE TSK’S ONLY TARGETS ARE PKK MILITANTS”
  • [04] TALABANI: “WE UNDERSTAND TURKEY DEFENDING ITSELF AGAINST TERRORIST GROUPS”
  • [05] PKK TERRORIST CAUGHT WITH 3 KG OF EXPLOSIVES IN ISTANBUL
  • [06] INONU TO BE COMMEMORATED TODAY
  • [07] EXPELLING TURKEY FROM EUROPE

  • [01] GUL ISSUES MESSAGE MARKING CHRISTMAS

    President Abdullah Gul yesterday released a message marking the traditional Christmas holiday. Gul said that regardless of religion or belief, the happiness and safety of all Turkish citizens will continue to be the main pillar of unity and solidarity within Turkey. Stressing that tolerance and solidarity between people have made the nation strong, the president expressed his hope that Christmas brings peace, love and happiness to the Christian world. /Turkiye/

    [02] BUSH: “THE PKK IS OUR COMMON ENEMY”

    Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan yesterday telephoned US President George W. Bush to brief him on ongoing operations against the terrorist PKK in northern Iraq. The two leaders reportedly expressed their determination to continue Turkish-US cooperation and intelligence sharing against the PKK. Bush reiterated that PKK is not only an enemy of Turkey but also a foe of the US and Iraq, calling the terrorist group “our common enemy.” The Turkish premier also underlined that during its anti-terror operations, Turkey would never target Iraqi civilians. /Aksam/

    [03] CICEK: “THE TSK’S ONLY TARGETS ARE PKK MILITANTS”

    Deputy Prime Minister and government spokesman Cemil Cicek said yesterday that in its ongoing anti-terror operations, the Turkish Armed Forces (TSK) is only targeting PKK terrorists, not civilians. Speaking to reporters after a Cabinet meeting, Cicek firmly rejected allegations by Kurdish leader Massoud Barzani that the TSK had targeted civilians. Cicek said that the TSK was carrying out its operations against terrorist PKK militants with great care so as not to hurt civilians. He also urged the Kurdish leader not to provide shelter for terrorists in northern Iraq. In addition, Cicek said that next month electricity price hikes of 15% for residences and 10% for industrial areas are expected. /Hurriyet-Turkiye/

    [04] TALABANI: “WE UNDERSTAND TURKEY DEFENDING ITSELF AGAINST TERRORIST GROUPS”

    Following Turkey’s latest blow against terrorist PKK militants hiding out in northern Iraq, Iraqi President Jalal Talabani yesterday met with Kurdish leader Masoud Barzani and Iraqi Vice President Tariq al-Hashemi to discuss the situation. Speaking to a joint press conference in the northern Iraqi city of Sulaimaniyah, Talabani said that they understand Turkey defending itself against terrorist groups. “We are aware of Turkey’s sensitivities,” he added. “We are not remaining silent, but we are not going to declare war, either.” On the other hand, Barzani rejected Turkey’s anti-terror operations in northern Iraq as “unacceptable,” condemning the latest attacks. /Cumhuriyet/

    [05] PKK TERRORIST CAUGHT WITH 3 KG OF EXPLOSIVES IN ISTANBUL

    After a week of surveillance, Istanbul Police yesterday arrested a PKK terrorist carrying 3 kilograms of explosives in the Mecidiyekoy metro station. Once he was in custody, police also found another type of explosive in his pockets. Another terrorist was also apprehended in the same area. Police sources said the arrest had averted a possible massacre. /Sabah/

    [06] INONU TO BE COMMEMORATED TODAY

    Ismet Inonu, the second president of the Turkish Republic, will be commemorated today, the 34th anniversary of his death. The first ceremony is planned to be held at his tomb inside Anitkabir, the mausoleum of Inonu’s comrade and republic founder Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, and then at his home, the Pembe Kosk in Ankara. In addition, Samsun’s 19 Mayis University will hold an event on Thursday to commemorate the late leader. /Hurriyet/

    FROM THE COLUMNS...FROM THE COLUMNS... FROM THE COLUMNS...

    [07] EXPELLING TURKEY FROM EUROPE

    BY YILMAZ OZTUNA (TURKIYE)

    Columnist Yilmaz Oztuna comments on an Internet declaration called “Turkey and a new vision for Europe” posted by 20 distinguished scholars at www.opendemocracy.net. A summary of his column is as follows:

    “Twenty distinguished professors from some of the most prestigious universities of the Western world, including Oxford , the London School of Economics, Paris ’ Sorbonne, and Yale University, posted a declaration on the Internet earlier this month.

    Scholarship, of course doesn’t administer politics. National legislatures aren’t academies, but assemblies of the people. But politics and legislatures can’t exist without scholarship. The Open Democracy website wanted to warn politicians and Europeans about a mistake which could pull world politics in the wrong direction.

    The main figure that they are concerned about is Nicholas Sarkozy, France’s recently elected president.

    The distinguished professors said that Sarkozy’s ‘illegitimate claim’ that Turkey isn’t European but Asian can pose a great danger for the European Union.

    For many Christians, utterly expelling Turkey from Europe has been an age- old dream. This kind of ‘idee fixe’ is very dangerous and can lead to tragic events. A very clear example of this is Hitler, who in addition to wreaking havoc around the world, also devastated his own country, Germany.

    An offended Turkey, a deeply offended Turkey, turning its back on Europe, could cost the bloc trillions of dollars and cause unbelievable clashes. I could spell out other scenarios which would make Sarkozy’s hair stand on end … ”


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