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Turkish Press Review, 08-08-04

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

04.08.2008


CONTENTS

  • [01] GUL HOSTS LUNCHEON FOR YAS MEMBERS
  • [02] ERDOGAN URGES AKP GROUP DEPUTY LEADERS TO GET TO WORK ON NEW CONSTITUTION
  • [03] TRNC STARTS TO DRAFT DETAILS OF POSSIBLE NEW FEDERAL STATE
  • [04] EIGHT SUSPECTS IN DEADLY GUNGOREN BOMBING ARRESTED
  • [05] YAGMURDERELI LAID TO REST IN ISTANBUL
  • [06] DEFENSE INDUSTRY INVESTMENTS SET TO RISE, ARMING TSK THROUGH DOMESTIC SOURCES
  • [07] WILDFIRE IN MEDITERRANEAN PROVINCE UNDER CONTROL, LEAVING DESTRUCTION IN ITS WAKE
  • [08] ISTANBUL TO HOST IMF WORLD MEETING IN 2009
  • [09] IT'S HARD TO BE OPTIMISTIC

  • [01] GUL HOSTS LUNCHEON FOR YAS MEMBERS

    The Supreme Military Council (YAS), chaired by Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, yesterday concluded its three-day meeting. President Abdullah Gul later hosted a luncheon in honor of the YAS members at the Foreign Ministry residence. Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Chief of General Staff Gen. Yasar Buyukanit and Defense Minister Vecdi Gonul also attended the luncheon. After the decisions of YAS are approved by Gul today, they will be made public and come into effect as of August 30. Under the decisions, current Chief of General Staff Gen. Yasar Buyukanit will retire on August 30, to be succeeded by Land Forces Commander Gen. Ilker Basbug. While the naval and air forces commanders are to stay at their posts for another year, Gen. Işık Koşaner, head of the Gendarmerie General Command, will replace Basbug as the new land forces commander. The annual regular meeting discusses the promotion of colonels, generals and admirals, the extension of tours of duty or retirement of generals and admirals, and the dismissal of military personnel due to disciplinary problems or conduct issues. /Turkiye/

    [02] ERDOGAN URGES AKP GROUP DEPUTY LEADERS TO GET TO WORK ON NEW CONSTITUTION

    The ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) is stepping up work to write a new constitution. The AKP group deputy leaders met with Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Saturday. They exchanged their views on a new parliamentary session. Erdogan reportedly urged them to start their work drawing up a new constitution early. /Milliyet/

    [03] TRNC STARTS TO DRAFT DETAILS OF POSSIBLE NEW FEDERAL STATE

    In anticipation of bilateral negotiations on the future of Cyprus, the government of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) has started to prepare draft details of a possible new federation state. The model will be based on the Zurich and London Agreements. Under the model, a Greek Cypriot would be president for three years, with a Turkish Cypriot vice president, to be followed by a Turkish Cypriot serving as president for one year. The Greek Cypriot administration, however, reportedly favors a system under which the president is always a Greek Cypriot and the vice president is always a Turkish Cypriot. /Cumhuriyet/

    [04] EIGHT SUSPECTS IN DEADLY GUNGOREN BOMBING ARRESTED

    Eight suspects in last week’s deadly bombings in Istanbul’s Gungoren district, which left 17 dead and more than 150 wounded, were arrested on Saturday. Speaking to reporters, Interior Minister Besir Atalay said that people who aided and abetted or actively took part in the bombings had been arrested. "I'm pleased to tell you that the entire plot has been exposed," he said. "A number of perpetrators were arrested in light of strong evidence that leaves no room for doubt." /Today's Zaman/

    [05] YAGMURDERELI LAID TO REST IN ISTANBUL

    Justice and Development Party (AKP) Istanbul Deputy and prominent TV producer Osman Yagmurdereli, 56, passed away from cancer on Saturday. His funeral was held in Istanbul, with Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Culture and Tourism Minister Ertugrul Gunay in attendance. /Aksam/

    [06] DEFENSE INDUSTRY INVESTMENTS SET TO RISE, ARMING TSK THROUGH DOMESTIC SOURCES

    In the wake of rapid development in recent years, the Turkish defense industry plans to dramatically raise its investments in the mid-term. The industry aims to gradually carry out investment projects over the next five to 10 years, including the world's most advanced helicopter and the first Turkish-made submarine, worth up to $50 billion, to strengthen the defensive force of the Turkish Armed Forces (TSK). Thanks to these investments, the TSK will be able to meet its needs from domestic production to a large extent, and sharply reduce its dependence on foreign industries. /Turkiye/

    [07] WILDFIRE IN MEDITERRANEAN PROVINCE UNDER CONTROL, LEAVING DESTRUCTION IN ITS WAKE

    After raging for four days, a wildfire in Antalya was fully brought under control late last night, but not before sweeping through four villages in Antalya's Serik and Manavgat districts. It began in Serik on Thursday. The fire gained strength due to high winds, spreading the flames to Manavgat. On Sunday, the fire reached Taşağıl in Antalya. Many villages in the area were evacuated and one person died in the fire, which as of Sunday had burned 4,000 hectares (10,000 acres) of red pine forest, an amount equal to the area of forestland lost in all of 2007. The Antalya fire is one of the worst wildfires in the past three decades. Environment and Forestry Minister Veysel Eroğlu, who arrived in the disaster area on Saturday, said the state would compensate local residents for their losses. "I have talked to our prime minister," he said. "I will be presenting detailed information to the Cabinet on Monday. Our public works minister has sent teams from the Disaster Management General Directorate to the region. We will be providing necessary aid to the people who were affected by the fire." /Sabah/

    [08] ISTANBUL TO HOST IMF WORLD MEETING IN 2009

    The International Monetary Fund World Meeting is set to be held in Istanbul in 2009. The triennial meeting is attended by more than 10,000 participants, including heads of state, economy ministers and central bank presidents of 184 countries. The meeting also carries great importance for Istanbul's bid to attract global finance, and it will provide an important opportunity for promotion and reaping tourism revenues. In related news, talks on a cautionary standby agreement between Turkey and the IMF are expected to start next week. /Sabah/

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

    [09] IT'S HARD TO BE OPTIMISTIC

    BY SEMIH IDIZ (MILLIYET)

    Columnist Semih Idiz comments on the possibility of a consensus between Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan and the main opposition party leader. A summary of his column is as follows:

    "We survived the hardship of the closure case against the Justice and Development Party (AKP). Now there's expectation of a great consensus, which means Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan and main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) leader Deniz Baykal should smile for the cameras and reduce the political tension they caused. Then they are expected to cooperate to implement mandatory and urgent political, social and economic reforms.

    Of course we would like Erdogan and Baykal to do this and then aid the emergence of a modern new Turkey squarely on its path to European Union membership. Actually both the AKP and CHP say they favor EU membership, but this seems wishful thinking to us. Similarly, for Baykal, the Constitutional Court didn't solve anything, but only identified the crisis. The same negative approach holds for Erdogan. He failed to pursue a consensus on the presidential elections, the headscarf issue, and constitutional amendments. He said that his views were clear and so no meetings were necessary, meaning that his own wishes would prevail. There's no clear sign that he has changed his stance, either.

    But if Turkey's highest court was unable to solve the crisis, as Baykal claimed, then what will happen about it? Reasonable people can see. This problem can be solved if influential people come together and take certain steps based on the country's objective realities and also embrace the entire nation with the understanding that 'Turkey come first.' But we also shouldn't forget that this is the country of politicians who stubbornly refuse to come together, even if they're openly inviting a coup. In addition, the role of 'wise men' that they want to play now is hardly convincing.

    Consequently, we shouldn't forget that we're a nation whose culture isn't based on tolerance and consensus, but on the idea of burning bridges. What's more, this nation considers this quite honorable. So it seems fights over basic issues will start again soon. By the way, reform requests from the EU will sow more tension. It's also not hard to guess that these requests will be seen as fresh opportunities to resume old fights, instead of understanding that these requests come from a union that we want to join.

    How do I know this? Because the experience of Turkey's past has always guaranteed its future. Indeed, learning lessons from our history and mistakes and taking positive roads which are shown directly or indirectly by others has always been considered something dishonorable. Of course it's strange to write such things at a time when positive expectations have risen. Please don't take offense, but we find it hard to be optimistic, like everybody who more or less knows Turkey. Of course I'd like to be proven wrong, but even this seems like wishful thinking to me. In short, it seems the crisis will continue, as Baykal clearly implied."


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