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Turkish Press Review, 08-11-03

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

03.11.2008


CONTENTS

  • [01] ERDOGAN: "DEMOCRACY AND TERROR CANNOT COEXIST"
  • [02] BABACAN TO TOUR EU STATES
  • [03] SIMSEK: "WITH OR WITHOUT THE IMF, TURKEY WILL CONTINUE ITS PROGRESS"
  • [04] BAYKAL MEETS WITH SHP LEADER KARAYALCIN
  • [05] US AMBASSADOR WILSON: "OUR ISSUES ALSO CONCERN TURKEY"
  • [06] US SCIENTISTS URGE TURKEY TO PROTECT ACADEMIC FREEDOM OF ISTANBUL GEOLOGIST
  • [07] ISTANBUL HOSTS TUYAP BOOK FAIR
  • [08] MOSCOW SUMMIT

  • [01] ERDOGAN: "DEMOCRACY AND TERROR CANNOT COEXIST"

    Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan visited Diyarbakir, Yuksekova and Hakkari over the weekend as part of his tour of the southeastern Anatolia region. After attending several inauguration ceremonies, Erdogan yesterday addressed a congress of his ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) in Hakkari. Criticizing the Democratic Society Party's (DTP) leadership in local cities, Erdogan said they try to win votes by exploiting Kurdish- origin Turkish citizens. Stating that democracy and terror cannot coexist, Erdogan added, "These (DTP supporters) have respected neither the land of this country nor the people who live here. This is exploitation of our Turkish citizens of Kurdish origin. They are falling into identity politics. They are trying to win votes through ethnic discrimination." Touching on investments in the region, he said that the government has invested as much as 124 billion YTL in Hakkari alone. "We always say 'one nation, one flag and one country'," he added. "We all are citizens of the Turkish Republic. The terrorist group refuses to accept that reality." /Aksam/

    [02] BABACAN TO TOUR EU STATES

    Foreign Minister and chief negotiator for European Union Talks Ali Babacan today starts a four-day EU tour including Marseilles, Rome, Prague and London. In Marseilles, France, he will attend a Barcelona Process: Union for the Mediterranean foreign ministers meeting. In Rome tomorrow, Babacan will attend a Turkish-Italian Business Forum and hold bilateral meetings. He will then proceed to Prague for bilateral talks with Czech officials. In London on Thursday, Babacan will finally meet with his British counterpart David Miliband. Babacan's meetings are expected to focus on Turkey's EU accession bid as well as bilateral and global issues. /Turkiye/

    [03] SIMSEK: "WITH OR WITHOUT THE IMF, TURKEY WILL CONTINUE ITS PROGRESS"

    State Minister for the Economy Mehmet Simsek yesterday visited the Gaziantep Industrial Zone and attended a conference on the world economic crisis held by Gaziantep University. World Bank Vice President for Europe and Central Asia Shigeo Katsu was also present at the conference. Afterwards, speaking to reporters, Simsek said that Turkey would continue to progress with or without the International Monetary Fund by fulfilling reforms and preserving tight monetary policy and budget discipline. Asked about the possibility of a standby agreement with the Fund, he said, "The government will do anything to benefit Turkey. We are eager for any program that could cushion the negative impact of the global economic crisis on Turkey's economy and at the same time strengthens the reform process. We earlier carried out important economic reforms without the IMF in areas such as social security and the energy market. We have no prejudice against a new agreement with the Fund. The government will do the right thing for Turkey." Simsek also said, "There is no country which is immune to the global crisis. Turkey's financial system and banks are currently in good condition. If liquidity problems arise, the government will provide banks with the necessary funds." Speaking at the conference, Katsu said that the World Bank places great importance on Turkey, adding that Turkey is the number four country using the bank's funds. /Turkiye/

    [04] BAYKAL MEETS WITH SHP LEADER KARAYALCIN

    Main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) leader Deniz Baykal yesterday visited Social Democratic People Party (SHP) leader Murat Karayalcin. Afterwards, Baykal told a joint press conference that the whole country welcomes this cooperation. "Now we know that this cooperation should become more concrete," he said. "Mr. Karayalcin will conclude his relationship with the SHP, and then his work running as the CHP's Greater Ankara Municipality mayoral candidate will begin." /Milliyet/

    [05] US AMBASSADOR WILSON: "OUR ISSUES ALSO CONCERN TURKEY"

    Turkey's Cold War-era importance for the US continues today, US Ambassador to Ankara Ross Wilson told Milliyet daily. "There's instability in the Middle East and the Caucasus," he told the paper. "Moreover, there are a lot of questions about Iran. In this new era, Turkey is important not only for its geographical location, but also for what it is." Wilson added, "Today there are five or six vital issues for the US and all of them, except for North Korea, concern Turkey one way or another." /Milliyet/

    [06] US SCIENTISTS URGE TURKEY TO PROTECT ACADEMIC FREEDOM OF ISTANBUL GEOLOGIST

    The National Academy of Sciences (NAS) is urging Turkey to protect the rights of Istanbul Technical University's Celal Sengor, currently the subject of an inquiry by the Board of Higher Education (YOK). In a letter sent to President Abdullah Gul, Premier Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Education Minister Huseyin Celik, NAS head Ralph J. Cicerone said that Professor Sengor, a geologist, is one of the world's most prominent and distinguished scholars, and asked for assurances of his academic freedom. He added that academic freedom and freedom of speech are prerequisites of scholarship and science benefiting society. /Hurriyet/

    [07] ISTANBUL HOSTS TUYAP BOOK FAIR

    The TUYAP Book Fair began in Istanbul over the weekend. The one-week fair brings together writers and readers and features such events as panels and exhibitions. /Cumhuriyet/

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

    [08] MOSCOW SUMMIT

    BY ERDAL SAFAK (SABAH)

    Columnist Erdal Safak comments on a summit in Moscow yesterday. A summary of his column is as follows:

    "Yesterday's tripartite summit in Moscow was watched closely by Ankara. The meeting brought together Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev and Armenian President Serzh Sarkisyan. The summit was about solving the Karabakh issue through negotiations. The international community placed so much importance on the summit that Matthew Bryza (from the US), Bernard Fassier (France), and Yuri Merziakov (Russia), who co-chair the Minsk Group under the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE), met in Russia to evaluated the developments.

    Certain think-tanks and diplomatic sources in Turkey said Ankara wasn't invited to the summit so it could be excluded from any solution to the problem. They also said Turkey's proposal for a Caucasian stability and cooperation platform was getting on the nerves of the US, European Union and Russia, but they are quite mistaken:

    The US is acting carefully these days, at a time of transition in its administration, in order not to incite conflict or offend its allies. In addition, both US President George W. Bush and the US State Department have reiterated that Turkey's initiative in the Balkans was very important for peace in the region.

    In its Progress Report and 2008-2009 Enlargement Strategy published this week, the US lays out Turkey's importance, citing its initiatives to head off conflicts and efforts to ensure regional safety in the Caucasus and the Middle East.

    As for Russia, it has already admitted that the success of its strategy of keeping the West " particularly the US and NATO " away from the Caucasus depends on supporting Turkey's policy that regional powers can find a solution to the region's problems. Thus, it's perhaps the most fervent supporter of our platform proposal. What's more, it can see that this initiative could later turn into a Caucasus alliance in its broadest sense to bring together countries of the region, just like the Gulf Cooperation Council, or the former Balkan Pact, Baghdad Pact, CENTO…

    Moreover, in all the developments which brought the parties to the Moscow summit, we know that at least Russia and Azerbaijan encouraged Ankara to continue its work. What's more, we've seen from the beginning that Turkey acted with the understanding that solving the conflict in the Caucasus is more important than Turkey being at the summit. And finally, the success of any peace plan coming from the summit depends on Ankara's go-ahead, because Ankara will be asked to cut the Gordian Knot, no matter what compromises a Karabakh plan agreed on by Azerbaijan and Armenia depends on. In addition, I'm talking about not only one knot, but a few:

    1. Besides international institutions, Turkey's guarantorship will be sought in any solution.

    2. In return for a compromise over Karabakh, Armenia will insist that Turkey open its border. As long as Turkey doesn't accept tying the Karabakh issue to the Armenian border, any solution will be suspended.

    Another important note: the Minsk Group co-chairs are close to Armenia. In addition, the US and France are under diaspora pressure and want to take Armenia out of Moscow's orbit. On the other hand, Russia is trying to keep Armenia, which is its most important base in the Caucasus, under its wing. Under these circumstances, the responsibility to act like a big brother to Azerbaijan and maintain the balance belongs to Turkey. Turkey wasn't at the summit in Moscow yesterday, but without our cooperation, the roads opened by that summit could turn into dead ends."


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