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Turkish Press Review, 09-05-27

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

27.05.2009


CONTENTS

  • [01] GUL VISITS KYRGYZSTAN
  • [02] DAVUTOGLU VISITS BAKU
  • [03] BRITAIN'S MILIBAND REITERATES HIS COUNTRY'S SUPPORT TO TURKEY FOR THE EU
  • [04] TURKEY-ARAB RELATIONS SYMPOSIUM HELD IN ISTANBUL
  • [05] TURKEY TO TAKE OVER TERM PRESIDENCY OF UN SECURITY COUNCIL
  • [06] RUSSIAN PM PUTIN SET TO VISIT TURKEY NEXT MONTH
  • [07] BASBUG: "OUR ARMY IS MORE POWERFUL AND INSPIRES FEAR IN OUR ENEMIES"
  • [08] MIDDLE EAST PEACE AND TURKEY

  • [01] GUL VISITS KYRGYZSTAN

    Accompanied by a crowd of deputies, government officials and businessmen, President Abdullah Gul yesterday started a Central Asian tour starting from Kyrgyzstan. "Central Asia is undoubtedly one of the most important issues of Turkish politics. We've always attached importance to our relations and cooperation with the countries in the region which we have common historic and cultural bond," Gul told reporters at Ankara's Esenboga Airport. Gul said that his visit to Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan would offer a unique opportunity to strengthen ties. /Hurriyet Daily News/

    [02] DAVUTOGLU VISITS BAKU

    Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu yesterday held a joint pres conference with his Azeri counterpart Elmar Mammadyarov in Baku. "Azerbaijan's stability, well-being, future and territorial integrity are very important for Turkey," said Davutoglu, adding, "Azerbaijan's strength means Turkey's strength." He said, "Our message to regional actors, including Armenia, is very clear. The region must be free of occupations and tensions." Stating that they always express that the Nagorno-Karabakh issue should be solved as soon as possible, Davutoglu said Turkey's view on the issue is clear and that the problem should be solved within the frame of Azerbiajan's territorial integrity. /Milliyet/

    [03] BRITAIN'S MILIBAND REITERATES HIS COUNTRY'S SUPPORT TO TURKEY FOR THE EU

    British Foreign Minister David Miliband yesterday paid a visit to Ankara, and met with State Minister and chief EU negotiator Egemen Bagis. Afterwards, Miliband told a joint press conference that Turkey and Great Britain work together in the UN and NATO. "I'm looking forward to a date when the two countries will work together in the European Union," he added. Stating that the continuation of the EU's membership negotiation process with Turkey is exactly beneficial for the EU itself, he reiterated his country's support for Turkey during its negotiation process. For his part, Bagis thanked Miliband for supporting Turkey's EU membership. Stating that the EU membership is not an easy process, he added that Turkey would complete this process through patience, decisiveness and its efforts. Miliband is expected to meet with Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan today. /Star/

    [04] TURKEY-ARAB RELATIONS SYMPOSIUM HELD IN ISTANBUL

    An opening ceremony of Arab geography in Ottoman period and Turkey-Arab relations symposium was held in Istanbul yesterday, led by Marmara University History Department and the Association of Researchers on the Middle East and Africa. Organization of Islamic Committee (OIC) Secretary- General Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu, State Minister Prof. Mehmet Aydin, as well as more than 60 participants from the Arab world and other countries attended the ceremony. Speaking at the gathering, Aydin said that the Turkish and Arab world had considerably historic ties. Ihsanoglu said that the link between Turks and Arabs have always been kept through their common history. /Star/

    [05] TURKEY TO TAKE OVER TERM PRESIDENCY OF UN SECURITY COUNCIL

    Turkey, which became a non-permanent member to the UN Security Council early this year for 2009-2010 period, is set to take over the rotating term presidency of the Council from Russia as of June 1. The Security Council has 15 members and five of them, namely Britain, France, China, the US and Russia, are permanent members. Each member of the Council has the veto right and assumes the term presidency of the Council for a period of one month in alphabetical order. In related news, Turkey has assumed the chair position of a UN sanctions committee on North Korea and it will be Turkey to convey UN's ultimatums to this country so that it immediately halts its nuclear program. Turkey also harshly condemned North Korea's latest nuclear test, labeling the move by Pyongyang as far from the international community's expectations for regional peace and stability. /Sabah/

    [06] RUSSIAN PM PUTIN SET TO VISIT TURKEY NEXT MONTH

    Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin is scheduled to pay a one-day official visit to Ankara on June 15 at the invitation of his Turkish counterpart Recep Tayyip Erdogan. Putin's talks in Ankara are expected to focus on ways to ensure the synchronized solution of problems between Turkey and Armenia, and Azerbaijan and Armenia. Turkey expects Russia to use its power to solve the dispute between Armenia and Azerbaijan over the Nagorno-Karabakh through peaceful means. To this end, Turkey urges Russia to speed up efforts under the MINSK Group of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) to resolve the Nagorno-Karabakh issue. The OSCE Minsk Group was created in 1992 to encourage a peaceful and negotiated resolution to the issue. It is headed by a Co-Chairmanship consisting of France, Russia and the United States, and also includes the following participating states: Belarus, Germany, Italy, Portugal, the Netherlands, Sweden, Finland, Turkey as well as Armenia and Azerbaijan. /Turkiye/

    [07] BASBUG: "OUR ARMY IS MORE POWERFUL AND INSPIRES FEAR IN OUR ENEMIES"

    The Turkish Armed Forces (TSK) has been undertaking annual maneuvers_exercises under the command of the Aegean Army since May 6 to last until May 29, with top level coordination among all TSK forces. Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Chief of General Staff Ilker Basbug, along with other top commanders, attended the distinguished observers’ day of the military drills yesterday. The EFES-2009 exercises consist of three phases, especially specializing on air strike operations, coordination of fire support, cyber war, special forces operations and chemical-biological operations. The newly innovated weapons and systems in the TSK’s arsenal are mobilized during the practices. Speaking to reporters afterwards, Basbug said that the TSK's ability to plan and carry out collective military operations had reached an excellent level. Basbug also said the TSK's current firepower and high-level capacity to conduct night operations inspire happiness and confidence in friendly countries, while inspiring fear and concern in unfriendly ones. For the first time, relatives of martyred and veteran soldiers were also invited to observe this year's drills. /Sabah/

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

    [08] MIDDLE EAST PEACE AND TURKEY

    BY BULENT ARAS (SABAH)

    Columnist Bulent Aras comments on Turkey's role in the Middle East peace process. A summary of his column is as follows:

    "The meeting held by US President Barack Obama and Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netenyahu at the White House last week redirected people's attraction towards the Middle East peace process. While the short press conference witnessed mutual good will messages and personal compliments, deep disagreements couldn't have been removed. Obama favors a solution with two states, whereas Netenyahu envisages an economic solution so that the Palestinian and Israeli people can live in prosperity. Obama believes that the Palestinian-Israeli peace would contribute to the constructive dialogue with Iran, but Netenyahu thinks that Iran is the most important security problem, which should be handled in priority. Netenyahu wants a solution with Iran about the nuclear issue to be based on a calendar, whereas Obama thinks that people should be patient. The two leaders argue that rapprochement with moderate Arab countries would facilitate the process with Iran. Netenyahu favors a cooperation which targets Iran, but Obama considers the rapprochement with Arab countries from the point of view of the relations with the Islam world.

    Palestinian authority leader Mahmud Abbas' visit to the US will deepen these discussions. There are two alternatives to be chosen by Palestine, namely, presidential and parliamentary elections. They are basically afraid that the HAMAS will win these two elections. This fear derives from the fact that HAMAS recognizes neither Israel, nor the agreements which were signed in the past. Interestingly, some people think that if HAMAS remains in the opposition, the problem would be solved. Furthermore, Israel and the US don't strongly believe that Abbas will become a reliable interlocutor. Syria wasn't mentioned in the press conference.

    This situation might be related to the statements made by Netenyahu that he wouldn't give the Golan hills and that this issue isn't covered by Obama's priorities. But it's too hard to talk about a comprehensive peace process in the Middle East, before Syrian-Israeli talks begin. The exclusion of Syria might make the things in Palestine and even Iraq more difficult. The Obama administration sees the big picture of peace in the Middle East. This is a great difference, when compared with the Bush administration. But it's not easy to achieve the goal in this comprehensive context. There are two important problems to be solved. The peace will be made with whom in Palestine? How will Israel and Syria be sat at the negotiation table?

    The most important contribution made by Turkey to the Middle East peace has been the Syrian-Israeli indirect talks. Former US State Secretary Condoleezza Rice met with his Syrian counterpart in the countries neighboring Iraq which was held in Turkey. Turkey ensured that Syria takes necessary measures in an era in which the most important sensitivity about Syria was the security of Iraqi border. The meetings were halted at the stage of determining the border, where Israel would withdraw, and the acceptance of conditions put forty by Syria for the security of Israel. All the cards owned by Syrian leader Bashar al-Asad is now in the hands of Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan and he's ready for meeting with Israel. Furthermore, peace with Syria is greatly important for the security of Israel. This way it will gain depth among the Arab countries, its regional legitimacy will be stronger, it will keep Iran away from its borders and the US' influence in the region will increase. If no progress is made with Palestinians, Turkey's role might directly intervene to open a new window. The other side of the Middle East peace is Hamas.

    Turkey's stance favoring the establishment of a national government of reconciliation in Palestine has been gaining acceptance day by day. The actors who favor the peace should take HAMAS into consideration. Turkey is the only country which can convince HAMAS to meet with Israel. HAMAS approaches Egypt's initiatives very carefully. The impact of Iran and Syria on HAMAS isn't functional, as these countries aren't reliable for Israel. The road to peace passes from making cooperation with Turkey in such issues as the construction of Gaza, the reconciliation among Palestinian groups and convincing HAMAS. Turkey is developing certain capabilities which might become influential under difficult conditions of the Middle East. Turkey's constructive role might facilitate resolving the Syrian and Palestinian issues and fill the model partnership envisaged by Obama."


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