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Turkish Press Review, 08-07-09

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

09.07.2008


CONTENTS

  • [01] FRENCH PRESIDENT INVITES ERDOGAN TO MEDITERRANEAN UNION SUMMIT
  • [02] ERDOGAN SLAMS BAYKAL'S CLAIMS ON ERGENEKON PROBE
  • [03] BAYKAL: "THE ERGENEKON PROBE IS A SCANDAL"
  • [04] BAHCELI: "EVERYONE SHOULD TAKE THE RESPONSIBILITY TO PROTECT TURKEY'S DEMOCRACY"
  • [05] RETIRED GENERALS SENT TO F-TYPE PRISON
  • [06] GEN. BUYUKANIT: "TERRORISM IS THE WORST PLAGUE OF THE 21ST CENTURY"
  • [07] ISTANBUL HOSTS ANTI-DRUG CONFERENCE

  • [01] FRENCH PRESIDENT INVITES ERDOGAN TO MEDITERRANEAN UNION SUMMIT

    French President Nicolas Sarkozy yesterday telephoned Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan to invite him to this weekend's Union for the Mediterranean Summit in Paris. Erdogan told the French president that he would consider attending the summit if his heavy schedule due to the country's domestic agenda allows him. Turkey has said it would consider being part of the Sarkozy-proposed union only if it is not a substitute for European Union membership. In related news, Foreign Minister Ali Babacan, currently in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia to attend a meeting of the Developing Eight Countries (D-8), said, "Our colleagues were there last week during work on the final declaration of the Union for the Mediterranean Summit." He added, "Important changes were made to the final declaration. Many components that Turkey sought were put into the final declaration. But a technical delegation will go to Paris on (Saturday) July 12, the day before the summit, and attend the last session on the final declaration. There are a number of components and there will be meetings on them, but there have been important changes up to now." /Milliyet/

    [02] ERDOGAN SLAMS BAYKAL'S CLAIMS ON ERGENEKON PROBE

    Speaking to his ruling Justice and Development Party's (AKP) parliamentary group meeting yesterday, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan said, "We aren't lawyers for the mafia or a gang. People who showered praise on Italy's operation Clean Hands against organized crime networks now criticize the government over the Ergenekon probe. This stance is telling." He was responding to main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) leader Baykal's claims that the government is using the Ergenekon probe to quash its opponents. Characterizing the probe as Turkey's version of the Italian operation, Erdogan said, "The government will continue to carry out its duties as assigned by the judiciary." Erdogan also criticized the opposition for failing to make constructive criticisms or working to improve the nation's morale. “They haven't made a single recommendation that might point to a better way. That’s because they have none," he said. "They don’t have any projects to tackle the nation’s problems." He also said Turkey must sooner or later shake off the illegal remnants of the Cold War era, and pledged to protect democracy, the rights of the people, and the values of the republic. /Sabah-Star/

    [03] BAYKAL: "THE ERGENEKON PROBE IS A SCANDAL"

    Main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) leader Deniz Baykal yesterday criticized the ongoing Ergenekon probe. Speaking at his party's parliamentary group meeting, Baykal pointed to the lack of an indictment in the case. "People have been taken into custody and detained for 13 months, but they don't even know their (alleged) crimes," he said, branding the probe a scandal. Commenting on Premier Recep Tayyip Erdogan comparing the probe to Italy's Clean Hands anti-crime operation, Baykal claimed that there was no similarity between the two, adding, "After all, if one intends to start such an operation, first your own hands have to be clean," hinting at corruption claims against the premier. Calling allegations of a planned coup to topple the government absurd, the CHP leader said, "There are only retired generals, no soldiers and no tanks, but only computer disks. Let's get serious." /Hurriyet-Turkiye/

    [04] BAHCELI: "EVERYONE SHOULD TAKE THE RESPONSIBILITY TO PROTECT TURKEY'S DEMOCRACY"

    In a written statement, opposition National Movement Party (MHP) leader Develt Bahceli said yesterday that Turkey is facing a dangerous political polarization and division, adding that in such a situation everyone, including the government, should take the responsibility to preserve Turkey's democratic system. Bahceli also called on his party’s members and supporters not to fall into the trap of separation and polarization and to avoid fueling artificial differences. /Star/

    [05] RETIRED GENERALS SENT TO F-TYPE PRISON

    Retired Gens. Sener Eruygur and Hursit Tolon and Ankara Chamber of Commerce (ATO) Chairman Sinan Aygun, who were arrested and taken to Istanbul's Metris Prison last week as part of the Ergenekon probe, yesterday were sent to an F-type prison in Kandira, Kocaeli. In addition, seven other detainees were transferred to Tekirdag's F-type prison. In related news, an indictment in the case will reportedly be presented by Friday to the Istanbul Republican Chief Prosecutor's Office. Meanwhile, the Justice Ministry has begun investigating the death of businessmen Kuddusi Okkir, who was kept in jail for about a year as part of the Ergenekon probe before being release due to health problems. /Turkiye/

    [06] GEN. BUYUKANIT: "TERRORISM IS THE WORST PLAGUE OF THE 21ST CENTURY"

    The Silk Road 2008 General_Admiral Seminar started yesterday in Antalya. Nearly 200 people from 49 countries, including generals, admirals and ambassadors, are attending the meeting, whose theme this year is global security and international cooperation. At the seminar's opening ceremony, Chief of General Staff Gen. Yasar Buyukanit said that terrorism was the worst plague of the 21st century, despite the lack of a common definition for it, adding that terrorism cannot be fought effectively in the absence of international cooperation. Buyukanit said that no type of terrorism can be considered legitimate, no matter what ideology it espouses, adding, "Moreover, even tendencies towards legitimizing terrorism are unacceptable." Buyukanit said that efforts in areas such as diplomacy, intelligence, the economy, finance, information and law are as important as military methods in fighting terrorism, since terrorist groups act much like international crime organizations through engaging in drug and human trafficking, money laundering, racketeering, bootlegging, and kidnapping for ransom. In related news, asked about Europe's failure to ban PKK activities on the continent, EU Military Committee Chairman Gen. Henri Bentegeat said, "Terrorism is an issue that goes beyond military matters." Bentegeat said EU countries' sensitivity to terrorism has been known to shift over time. For his part, Giampaolo Di Paola, the chair of NATO’s Military Committee, said that relations between NATO and the EU must be improved, adding, "We lack the resources to appear on the international stage as we should. NATO and the EU should work hand in hand." /Cumhuriyet/

    [07] ISTANBUL HOSTS ANTI-DRUG CONFERENCE

    Some 450 anti-drug experts from 91 countries are now in Istanbul for a conference on fighting drug smuggling and abuse. The three-day international conference co-organized by the Turkish Police Department and the US Drug Enforcement Administration began yesterday, and is meant to strengthen operational strategies and information exchanges on drug traffickers. Addressing the opening of the gathering, Interior Minister Besir Atalay pointed to recent Turkish police successes against drug smuggling and urged closer global cooperation and information-sharing on criminals. He also praised the US identifying the terrorist PKK as an organization involved with drug smuggling. /Hurriyet/
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