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Turkish Press Review, 09-01-13

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

13.01.2009

FROM THE COLUMNS…FROM THE COLUMNS…FROM THE COLUMNS

CONTENTS

  • [01] PRESIDENT GUL RECEIVES DELEGATIONS FROM TUSKON AND US THINK-TANKS
  • [02] ERDOGAN DUE IN BRUSSELS
  • [03] CICEK DEFENDS TURKEY'S EU PROCESS, ERGENEKON PROBE
  • [04] SAHIN: "EVERYONE SHOULD RESPECT JUDICIAL INDEPENDENCE"
  • [05] 2 MORE ARRESTED UNDER ERGENEKON PROBE
  • [06] IN DAMASCUS, DAVUTOGLU HOLDS TALKS WITH OFFICIALS FROM SYRIA, HAMAS
  • [07] UN SECRETARY-GENERAL BAN DUE IN TURKEY
  • [08] IRANIAN PARLIAMENT SPEAKER DUE IN ISTANBUL
  • [09] FORMER LABOR MINISTER PASSES AWAY
  • [10] QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS
  • [11] WHAT SHOULD MUSLIMS DO?

  • [01] PRESIDENT GUL RECEIVES DELEGATIONS FROM TUSKON AND US THINK-TANKS

    President Abdullah Gul yesterday received Turkish Confederation of Industrialists and Businessmen (TUSKON) head Rizanur Meral along with representatives from US think-tanks the Center for Strategic and International Studies, the Woodrow Wilson Center and the Center for American Progress, now in Turkey as TUSKON's guests. During the meeting, Gul and his visitors discussed such issues as Turkish-European Union relations, energy dependence on Russia, and the Palestinian-Israeli conflict. Today Gul is set to welcome five prominent figures from the world of film to the Cankaya Palace, in the latest in a series of meetings with distinguished figures. Invited are directors Sinan Cetin, Erden Kiral, and Yucel Cakmakli, producer Turker Inanoglu, scriptwriter Gani Mujde, actor Sener Sen, and actresses Lale Mansur and Zuhal Olcay. /Milliyet-Cumhuriyet/

    [02] ERDOGAN DUE IN BRUSSELS

    Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan is set to visit Brussels this Sunday at the invitation of European Union Commission head Jose Manuel Barosso, with Foreign Minister Ali Babacan and newly appointed chief EU talks negotiator Egemen Bagis also in attendance. Erdogan reportedly will dismiss claims that Turkey's EU accession process has slowed down, and reiterate Turkey's determination in its EU bid. Erdogan will also speak about what Turkey is doing in line with its national program for EU membership reforms. Erdogan is scheduled to hold separate meetings with EU Commissioner for Enlargement Olli Rehn and European Parliament Chairman Hans-Gert Poettering in Brussels. On the sidelines of his visit, Erdogan will attend a conference held by the Friends of Europe think-thank and visit the Istanbul Center, a communications and cultural platform for the city's communications with EU organizations, corporations, and the European public. This will be Erdogan's first visit to Brussels since 2005. /Sabah/

    [03] CICEK DEFENDS TURKEY'S EU PROCESS, ERGENEKON PROBE

    Speaking to reporters after a Cabinet meeting yesterday, Deputy Prime Minister and government spokesperson Cemil Cicek said that the government's determination to carry out European Union reforms is unwavering, rejecting claims that Turkey's reform process has slowed down. Stating that accession talks with the Union are going on in 33 chapters, Cicek urged the EU to meet its responsibilities and treat Turkey fairly. Asked about the ongoing Ergenekon probe and trial, Cicek said the Cabinet had not discussed it, adding that the probe was confidential and leaks should be avoided. Dismissing claims that the probe is politically motivated, with the judiciary being directed by the government, Cicek said, "These are groundless allegations. Some circles are trying to politicize and derail the ongoing legal process." The Cabinet meeting was the first for newly appointed State Minister and chief EU talks negotiator Egemen Bagis. /Aksam/

    [04] SAHIN: "EVERYONE SHOULD RESPECT JUDICIAL INDEPENDENCE"

    Justice Minister Mehmet Ali Sahin yesterday stressed the importance of respecting the judiciary's independence in the wake of criticisms of the judicial system made by Judges and Prosecutors Association (YARSAV) head Omer Faruk Eminagaoglu, following recent detentions and arrests under the Ergenekon probe. "Making rulings is the work of the independent judiciary. Neither I nor any other person or institution can interfere with the work of the judiciary," Sahin said. Eminagaoglu had accused the government of trying to make Turkey into a police state, claiming that the police had assumed the role of prosecutors and judges in the Ergenekon probe. In response, Sahin called on Eminagaoglu to stop making "reckless" statements raising doubts about the impartiality of the judiciary. Saying that YARSAV doesn't represent the judicial world, Sahin accused the group of acting like a political party. In related news, Istanbul Chief Prosecutor Aykut Cengiz was in Ankara yesterday to speak with Sahin. Asked whether he came to Ankara to discuss an alleged investigation of the Ergenekon prosecutors, Cengiz said his visit was an ordinary one to discuss problems of the courts in Istanbul. Justice Minister Sahin also dismissed the claims. In other news, Supreme Court of Appeals Chief Justice Hasan Gerceker said that the judicial process of the Ergenekon probe was continuing, adding that the judiciary can solve all its problems by itself. Stressing that commenting on the probe could damage the top court's impartiality, he said the judiciary has to act in line with the law. /Turkiye/

    [05] 2 MORE ARRESTED UNDER ERGENEKON PROBE

    Following his detention under the Ergenekon probe, Professor Yalcin Kucuk was formally arrested yesterday on charges of membership in an illegal organization. In addition to Kucuk, retired Col. Mustafa Levent Goktas was also arrested, one of 17 recent arrests under the probe. In related news, the police discovered a large amount of explosives, weapons and ammunition buried near an abandoned house in Ankara's Sincan district. It was the second such finding, reportedly based on maps found in recent raids. /Turkiye/

    [06] IN DAMASCUS, DAVUTOGLU HOLDS TALKS WITH OFFICIALS FROM SYRIA, HAMAS

    A delegation led by Ahmet Davutoglu, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan's chief foreign policy adviser, yesterday proceeded to Syria from Egypt as part of Turkey's diplomatic efforts to push for an immediate cease-fire between Hamas and Israel. After meetings with officials from Syria and Hamas, and Davutoglu's talks with Syrian Foreign Minister Walid al-Muallem, the delegation was reportedly optimistic about a possible cease-fire. After its contacts in Syria, the delegation returned to Egypt, where it will reportedly continue to meet with Egyptian and Palestinian officials. /Star/

    [07] UN SECRETARY-GENERAL BAN DUE IN TURKEY

    UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon is set to visit Turkey on Friday to talk about Turkey's proposals for a cease-fire between Israel and Hamas. Ban will hold separate meetings with President Abdullah Gul, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Foreign Minister Ali Babacan. /Star/

    [08] IRANIAN PARLIAMENT SPEAKER DUE IN ISTANBUL

    Iranian Parliament Speaker Ali Larijani is set to arrive in Istanbul today to attend a meeting of the Parliamentary Union of the Organization of Islamic Conference member states (PUOICM). Laricani will reportedly deliver a speech to the meeting and hold a series of talks. The meeting, which was called for by Parliament Speaker Koksal Toptan, will focus on stopping Israeli attacks in Gaza and delivering humanitarian aid to the Palestinians. /Cumhuriyet/

    [09] FORMER LABOR MINISTER PASSES AWAY

    Former Social Security and Labor Minister and Necati Celik passed away on Sunday evening due to a heart attack. President Abdullah Gul and Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan yesterday attended a religious ceremony marking Celik's death, also the onetime head of trade union Hak-Is. Many other government officials were also in attendance during the ceremony at Ankara's Kocatepe Mosque. /Turkiye/

    FROM THE COLUMNS…FROM THE COLUMNS…FROM THE COLUMNS

    [10] QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS

    BY OKTAY EKSI (HURRIYET)

    Columnist Oktay Eksi comments on recent developments. A summary of his column is as follows:

    "Is Al Qaeda a terrorist group? Of course!

    Isn't it humanity's unavoidable duty to seize and punish the leaders, members and militants of such a bloody group and to eliminate it? Of course!

    Well, is trying to link almost all terrorist attacks to al Qaeda honest? Of course not. But US President George W. Bush, who will leave office next week, to the relief of the entire world, has done so.

    All the world hates Bush for his attempts to bring Afghanistan and Pakistan under his rule and crush Iraq under the pretense of defeating al Qaeda.

    Bush came to this point by closing his eyes to Iraq's misery, and to human rights and the rule of law, saying, 'I have the power, so I can do whatever I want,' in a nutshell terrorizing all of humanity.

    Now let's look at ourselves:

    The 1996 Susurluk scandal exposed a continuing process of gangs forming within the state. To ensure public peace, strengthen the rule of law, and help democracy work better, all its links needed to be uncovered.

    But did this happen? I think not! Active Susurluk members both inside and out of the state managed to block this.

    And do you think that there are links between Susurluk and Ergenekon?

    Yes… Evidence uncovered - or allegedly so - makes me think such links do exist.

    So what kind of harm can be expected from the Ergenekon probe bringing the truth to light?

    None. On the contrary, any real links between the Susurluk and Ergenekon suspects must be brought to light.

    Moreover, following a fair trial, the criminals should face the severest punishment.

    So why are the ruling party and the opposition attacking each other? Why are certain newspapers and journalists lashing out at each other?

    They are attacking each other because the ruling party's view of the Ergenekon probe is similar to Bush's plans and his al Qaeda pretext. Anyone with any sense can see that the current process is meant to threaten certain circles and even eliminate certain people by squelching them, rather than reveal the truth and punish criminals.

    And certain newspapers are at odds over their race to curry favor with the ruling party.

    Otherwise, in essence, no one thinks in a different way; no one says that criminals should be saved.”

    [11] WHAT SHOULD MUSLIMS DO?

    BY MAHIR KAYNAK (STAR)

    Columnist Mahir Kaynak comments on what Muslims should do about the Gaza war. A summary of his column is as follows:

    "There is no justification for the tragedy in Gaza. Hamas' ineffective attacks and Israel's excessive reaction show that the parties aren't thinking ahead or else are pursuing some unseen goal.

    Israel is ignoring all the protests and continuing its senseless attacks. But the protests have an important characteristic, namely it is mostly Muslims who are condemning Israel. This creates the impression that the protests aren't based on humanitarian concerns, but religious differences. Muslims should stress that Israel's attacks are on humanity and urge everyone to protest this suffering. The situation has consciously or unconsciously been turned into a conflict between Muslims and Jews. Muslims should have said that Israel is violating human rights, and then the West's stance on this would show if its rhetoric is sincere or not.

    This situation has separated Muslims living in the West from others. They even can't act together to stop a humanitarian tragedy. There are also concerns that this split could be seen in other issues as well.

    The public sorrow and anger over this situation isn't being reflected in various governments. This is causing people living in the region to distrust their rulers. For example, there's a huge gap between the Egyptian people and the government on this, and so an environment is being sown for the public protest to be directed towards the government. This could play an important role in changing governments in the region. Iran's harsh rhetoric prior to the conflict has been replaced by a calmer stance. So nobody should be surprised if there is tension between the governments and people in countries in the region, excepting Turkey.

    Turkey's response has been in line with public sentiments, which can be seen as the right course.

    We can set principles about how we should act towards developments in our region. Turkey isn't against any nation and thus won't allow thing to degenerate into anti-Semitism. Turkey will make its policies not only in line with its interests, but also for the purpose of promoting peace in the region and providing public safety and welfare. In its alliances, Turkey will not seek pacts based on religion or origin, but similar thoughts and projects for the future. It will also show that it believes that a harmonious world order can be ensured through reconciliation, rather than destructive conflicts.

    This would mean seeing only the Israeli government as responsible for its policies, and assuming the public will eventually oppose them, and showing that enmity against nations isn't in line with our understanding."


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