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Anadolu Agency: News in English, 97-12-09

Anadolu Agency: News in English Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Anadolu Agency Home Page at <http://www.anadoluajansi.gov.tr/>

09 DEC 1997


CONTENTS

  • [01] TURKEY-PRESS SCAN
  • [02] TURKEY-OIC - PRESIDENT DEMIREL'S CONTACTS IN TEHRAN
  • [03] TURKEY-BOSNIA - FOREIGN MINISTER CEM IN BONN
  • [04] TURKISH PRESS REVIEW (1)
  • [05] TURKISH PRESS REVIEW (2)
  • [06] TURKEY-IRAN - PRESIDENT DEMIREL RESPONDS TO QUESTIONS OF IRANIAN TELEVISION - DEMIREL: ''TURKISH REPUBLIC IS SECULAR AND ITS PEOPLE IS MOSLEM. THIS IS OUR SYSTEM''
  • [07] TURKEY IN BRIEF - DECEMBER 9, 1997
  • [08] TURKEY-ISRAEL - PARLIAMENT SPEAKER CETIN RECEIVES ISRAELI DEFENSE MINISTER MORDECHAI - CETIN: ''I AM GLAD ABOUT IMPROVEMENT OF BILATERAL RELATIONS IN EVERY FIELD''
  • [09] TURKEY-AZERBAIJAN-OIL - SOCAR VICE PRESIDENT ILHAM ALIYEV: ''PASSING OF MAIN OIL PIPELINE VIA ARMENIA IS OUT OF QUESTION''
  • [10] TURKEY-INTERNAL - ''NO-CONFIDENCE MOTION'' FILED AGAINST RURAL AFFAIRS AND HOUSING MINISTER TOPCU
  • [11] TURKEY-BRITAIN - PRIME MINISTER YILMAZ LEAVES FOR BRITAIN
  • [12] TURKEY-POLITICS - COMMISSION REPORT REGARDING PARLIAMENTARY IMMUNITIES OF AGAR AND BUCAK SUBMITTED TO PARLIAMENT
  • [13] CYPRUS - NON GOVERNMENTAL ORGANIZATIONS CONFERENCE IN GREEN LINE
  • [14] TURKEY-INTERNAL - CLOSURE CASE OF WELFARE PARTY GRADUALLY COMES TO THE END
  • [15] TURKEY-EU - LUXEMBOURG FOREIGN MINISTER JACQUES POOS: ''MEETINGS THAT WILL BE HELD WITH TURKEY WITHIN TWO DAYS ARE VERY IMPORTANT''
  • [16] TURKEY-TAX REFORM - INCOME TAX FIRST BRACKET TO BE ONE BILLION LIRA
  • [17] TURKEY-ISRAEL - ISRAELI DEFENSE MINISTER MORDECHAI VISITS TAI INSTALLATIONS - MORDECHAI: ''I AM IN TURKEY TO SUPPORT TURKISH-ISRAELI COOPERATION''
  • [18] TURKEY-NORTHERN IRAQ - KDP: ''PUK BURNS OUR VILLAGES AND DESTROYS ENERGY LINES'' - ''11 TERRORISTS SURRENDERED TO US''
  • [19] TURKEY-OIC - TURKEY PARTICIPATES IN OIC SUMMIT WITH A CROWDED DELEGATION HEADED BY PRESIDENT DEMIREL
  • [20] TURKEY-US - JOINT ECONOMIC COUNCIL MEETING STARTS
  • [21] TURKEY-GERMANY - TURCO-GERMAN CHAMBER OF COMMERCE AND INDUSTRY CHAIRMAN KAISER: ''TURKEY AND GERMANY ARE PARTNERS''
  • [22] TURKEY-ECONOMY - TURKEY AIMS TO PRODUCE 2,2 MILLION TONNES OF SUGAR IN 1998

  • [01] TURKEY-PRESS SCAN

    These are some of the leading stories in Turkey's press on December 9, 1997. Anadolu Agency does not verify these stories and does not vouch for their accuracy. You will find better detailed summaries of major news reports in a few hours.

    HÜRRİYET (LIBERAL)

    FRIENDLY VOICE FROM RUSSIA
    Russian Prime Minister Cernomırdin, who will visit Ankara on December 15, gave friendly messages and said ''We will hold very beneficial meetings with my friend Yılmaz. I can say that a new period of opportunities will start between the two countries. If Turkey accepts Russia's offer, we will be a strategical partner in the 21st century in economy.

    IF THERE ARE 276 VOTES, I WILL RESIGN
    Prime Minister Mesut Yılmaz said that if the censure motion against Rural Affairs and Housing Minister Yasar Topcu is accepted by 276 votes in the parliament, then he will resign. ''If the number of votes which accept the censure motion is less than 276, we will continue in our way.''

    MİLLİYET (LIBERAL)

    ACCIDENT JUST LIKE CRIMINAL ATTACK
    Parliament Susurluk Commission Rapporteur Judge Akman Akyurek died in a mysterious car accident in Istanbul. Akyurek made comprehensive investigations about a gang in South Africa, ETA in Spain, IRA in England and Gladio in Italy and he knew a lot about the gang in Turkey.

    SABAH (LIBERAL)

    PRESIDENT'S GOOD ANSWER
    Addressing the Iranian television, which supported the Welfare Party, President Suleyman Demirel said ''Your statements can be proof against the Welfare Party in our court.'' Noting that everybody enjoys the right to exercise his/her religion freely in Turkey, Demirel pointed out that ''We do not intervene with your system and you should not intervene with ours. Our constitution does not permit political parties which are based on religion, because Turkey is a secular country.''

    CUMHURİYET (LEFT)

    INVESTIGATION FOR ERDOGAN
    An official from Diyarbakır State Security Court said that they started an investigation about Istanbul Mayor Tayyip Erdogan, who made a speech in Sıvas and extended support for fundamentalism while the closure case of the Welfare Party was continuing.

    WELFARE PARTY WAITING
    The administrative body of the Welfare Party are worried about the closure case of the Welfare Party. The Constitutional court will discuss the case on Wednesday. If the party is closed, the leader Necmettin Erbakan and those parliamentarians whose names are mentioned in the indictment, will be prohibited from dealing with politics for five years.

    TÜRKİYE (RIGHT)

    CRITICAL SUMMIT
    Turkey will urge Islamic countries to take ''concrete'' decisions during the eighth meeting of Organization for Islamic Conference (OIC). 55 countries participate in the Summit, which will start in Tehran today. The leaders of the countries will meet in a dinner during the summit and they will discuss D-8.

    S-300 MISSILES MADE ISRAEL UNEASY
    Israel reacted to S-300 missiles which will be purchased from Russia by the Greek Cypriot side. Israeli Defense Minister said ''the Greek Cypriot missiles also make us uneasy.''

    RADİKAL (LEFT)

    UNITED NATIONS TO CLEAN BLACK SEA
    United Nations (UN) took the Black Sea under protection for the year 1998, which is declared by ''sea year'' by UN. Scientists said that emergency measures should be taken to prevent ecological destruction in the Black Sea, which is very polluted. The main source of the pollution is five rivers which pour into the Black Sea.

    ZAMAN (CONSERVATIVE)

    15 BILLION DOLLARS ''CONDITION''
    Prime Minister Mesut Yılmaz said that if IMF extends an assistance of 15, 000 billion dollars to Turkey, then one year would be enough to implement the three-year program fully. If the government has the political support, it can carry out its program against inflation in three years with 1-2 billion dollars, Yılmaz added.

    YENİ YÜZYIL (LIBERAL)

    ELECTION SIGNAL FROM YILMAZ
    Prime Minister Mesut Yılmaz said that he does not count on the support of Republican Peoples Party (CHP) leader Deniz Baykal and an early elections can come to the agenda anytime.

    FİNANSAL FORUM (ECONOMY)

    NO HOPE IN LUXEMBOURG, TOO
    European Union (EU) Foreign Ministers, who convened in Brussels yesterday, discussed the expansion strategy of EU. Even the strategy, which isolated Turkey from the participation process in a considerable way, met with Greek veto.

    [02] TURKEY-OIC - PRESIDENT DEMIREL'S CONTACTS IN TEHRAN

    TEHRAN, Dec 9 (A.A) - President Suleyman Demirel, who is currently in Tehran to participate in the eighth meeting of Organization for Islamic Conference (OIC), held bilateral contacts on Monday.

    Foreign Ministry Spokesman Necati Utkan gave information about President Demirel's contacts in Tehran.

    Utkan said that President Demirel met Azeri President Haydar Aliyev and the latter told Demirel that Baku-Ceyhan pipeline should be opened as soon as possible.

    President Demirel had said ''this is our number one project,'' adding that US extends support to this pipeline route.

    President Demirel also told Aliyev that Turkey will extend support to the draft resolution submitted by Azerbaijan regarding the invasion of Karabakh by Armenia.

    President Demirel also met Afghan Head of State Burhaneddin Rabbani and told him that ''Turkey has been worried since the civil war and it favours peace and an undivided Afghanistan.''

    President Demirel noted that a lasting peace in Afghanistan should include all sides.

    President Suleyman Demirel also met Colombian Deputy President and Term President of Non-Allied Countries Group Carlos Lemos, who participates in OIC summit as an observor. Lemos told Demirel that ''Turkey plays an important role in the region, Central Asia, the Middle East, the Balkans, Cyprus, Iraq and Caucasus.''

    President Suleyman Demirel, who will participate in the opening of OIC summit on Tuesday, is also expected to meet Iranian President Mohammed Khatami.

    [03] TURKEY-BOSNIA - FOREIGN MINISTER CEM IN BONN

    BONN, Dec 9 (A.A) - Foreign Minister Ismail Cem arrived in Bonn on Monday evening to participate in ''Bosnian Peace Implementation Council,'' which will start on Tuesday.

    Bosnian President Alia Izzetbegovic, Bosnian Presidency Council members Kresimir Zubak and Momcilo Krajisnik, Co-President Haris Siladzic, Bosnian Serbia Republic Head of State Biljana Plavsic and 60 delegations are expected to participate in the ''Bosnian Peace Implementation Council'' which will last for two days in Bonn.

    [04] TURKISH PRESS REVIEW (1)

    These are brief summaries of some of the leading stories in Turkey's press on December 9, 1997. Anadolu Agency does not verify these stories and does not vouch for their accuracy.

    (Derived from Newsspot of Turkish Directorate of General Press and Information)

    OIC FOREIGN MINISTERS' MEETING IN TEHRAN
    A three-day meeting of leaders and foreign ministers from the Organization of the Islamic Conference (OIC) member countries started in Tehran yesterday. Also among them was Turkish President Suleyman Demirel, who held his first talks with his Azerbaijani counterpart, Haydar Aliyev. The two leaders discussed the Azerbaijani-Armenian conflict. Among other foreign officials, Demirel is also expected to meet with Iranian President Khatami. Demirel is also scheduled to participate in a special meeting of the Developing-Eight (D-8), an economic cooperation group, bringing together Bangladesh, Egypt, Indonesia, Iran, Malaysia, Nigeria, Pakistan and Turkey. /All papers/

    ISRAELI DEFENSE OFFICIALS IN TURKEY
    Turkish and Israeli defense officials yesterday agreed in principle to jointly produce defensive-oriented 500-kilometer range missiles following recent concerns that Iran and Syria's growing missile potential in the region has reached an alarming level. Israeli Defense Minister Yitzhak Mordechai began his visit to Turkey yesterday in Ankara with a group of high-level defense officials and journalists and said that the Jewish state's growing ties with Turkey as a strategic partner was no threat to other countries. Turkey and Israel which both have been suffering terrorism attacks have also been focusing on security affairs and exchanging intelligence on terrorism. Meanwhile, a Turkish, Israeli and US joint naval exercise is to be held between January 5-9 off the coast of Israel and in the international waters of the eastern Mediterranean. /All papers/

    PM YILMAZ IN BRITAIN
    Turkish Prime Minister Mesut Yilmaz, who is to meet British Prime Minister Tony Blair, is expected to ask for a continuation of Britain's backing for Turkey's participation in the Euro conference. Cyprus and Turco-Greek relations are also on the agenda of the meeting. It is thought that Blair will reiterate his government's view on Cyprus' membership in the European Union (EU). Blair's government has been underlining the importance of including Turkey in the European family. Foreign Secretary Robin Cook said in a parliamentary committee last week that he considered Turkey's participation in the Euro-Conference as vital. /All papers/

    TURKEY CONTINUES N.IRAQ OPERATIONS
    Turkey's military operation in northern Iraq is continuing with good results, Chief of General Staff Gen.Ismail Hakki Karadayi told reporters yesterday. Military officials in the southeastern Turkish city of Diyarbakir said six F-16 jets hit PKK targets in the remote Khwakurk region of Iraq. Turkish troops and the Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP), were closing in on a large group of PKK fighters in Khwakurk, the mountainous corner where Iraq, Iran and Turkey meet. Meanwhile, currently operations continue against the PKK in southeastern areas of Turkey. Fourteen separatists were captured in the cities of Bitlis, Sirnak and Mardin and seven were killed, said the Office of Emergency Rule in a statement./All papers/

    A CONTRACT BETWEEN TPAO AND AMOCO
    One of the leading world petroleum companies, the US based AMOCO company and the Turkish Petroleum Corporation (TPAO) have signed a contract to start oil-drilling operations in the gulf of Mersin. /Hurriyet/

    ISTANBUL AFFECTED BY RAIN
    Alarm was given at the start of the rainfall that flooded houses and offices in low-lying districts of Istanbul. The Governor's Office in Istanbul warned everyone on television and in the press that the rain will continue for one more week. Meanwhile, continuous rain turned into snow in Canakkale and schools were closed for one day by the Governor's Office. Traffic was blocked along the Dardanelles as a result of rain, snow and heavy storms. Ships were kept in port and ferries were cancelled. /All papers/

    DEMIREL AND YILMAZ START LETTER DIPLOMACY
    President Suleyman Demirel and Prime Minister Mesut Yilmaz have started a ''letter diplomacy'' to bring the attention of Europe to the results of a possible negative decision against Turkey at the Luxemburg summit. President Suleyman Demirel has sent a letter to his German counterpart Roman Herzog saying that Turkey had contributed much to the security of Europe for 50 years and had already turned towards Europe before the establishment of the European Union (EU). He added that a negative result would be damaging to Turkey. Prime Minister Mesut Yilmaz has also sent letters to the prime ministers of the EU countries stressing Turkey's expectations from of the Luxemburg summit. He added that a negative decision would not only damage Turkey but also Europe. /Milliyet/

    (CONTINUES)

    [05] TURKISH PRESS REVIEW (2)

    These are brief summaries of some of the leading stories in Turkey's press on December 9, 1997. Anadolu Agency does not verify these stories and does not vouch for their accuracy.

    (Derived from Newsspot of Turkish Directorate of General Press and Information)

    HAZELNUT EXPORTS UP
    Turkey's hazelnut exports have increased by 18.12 percent and the foreign exchange revenue is up by 60.37 percent. The Black Sea Hazelnut Exporters' Union announced yesterday that 13,732 tons more of hazelnuts were exported during the first three months of the 1997-1998 period compared to the same period last year. It is also reported that 403,141 million dollars were earned in the same period. /Sabah/

    CEM IN BONN
    Foreign Minister Ismail Cem went to Bonn yesterday to attend a Bosnia- Herzegovina Peace Application Council Meeting. Before his departure, Cem said at Ankara Ataturk Airport that for a sustainable peace central administrations should be more powerful. Ismail Cem will attend NATO meetings on 16 December in Brussels and a Ministers Council Meeting of the European Security and Cooperation Organization on 18-19 December in Copenhagen. /Sabah/

    [06] TURKEY-IRAN - PRESIDENT DEMIREL RESPONDS TO QUESTIONS OF IRANIAN TELEVISION - DEMIREL: ''TURKISH REPUBLIC IS SECULAR AND ITS PEOPLE IS MOSLEM. THIS IS OUR SYSTEM''

    TEHRAN, Dec 9 (A.A) - President Suleyman Demirel in a respond to a question asked by Iranian television about the closure of the Welfare Party (RP), said that ''Our constitution does not permit political parties which are based on religion. If you say that this party was based on Islam and it will be closed due to this, your statements can be used as a proof in the court.''

    Addressing a statement to Iranian television, President Demirel said that several problems took place in Turkish-Iranian relations, but they can be overcomed.

    Responding to a question, Demirel pointed out that the Islamic Conference Summit is very important and the aim of Organization for Islamic Conference (OIC) is peace.

    Recalling that Palestine and Israel started the Middle East Peace Process which is a very important process, President Demirel pointed out that ''Several states may not approve it, but Turkey favours the process and peace.''

    ''Turkish relations with Israel are not directed against any third country, it is just a bilateral issue between two countries,'' said Demirel.

    Responding to another question regarding the possibility of closure of RP although Turkish people are moslem, President Demirel stressed that ''RP has a vote of 20 percent in Turkey. You say that Turkish people are moslem, yes 99 percent of them are moslem. If it is claimed that only 20 percent of the people represent Islam, then what about the remaining 79 percent? Are not they moslem? In that respect political parties can not manipulate religion in our country, if they do, they will divide moslem people. Our politics separate state from religion, but its people are faithful moslems.''

    Noting that nobody claims that he/she can not enjoy the right to exercise his/her religious beliefs in Turkey, Demirel added that Turkey does not intervene with the internal affairs of any country.

    ''Turkish Republic is secular and its people are moslem. This is our system and we will continue as it is,'' said Demirel.

    [07] TURKEY IN BRIEF - DECEMBER 9, 1997

    ZONGULDAK - Austrian Verbundplan (VPL) company gave a start to its etudes to find a place for the installation of a new 700 megawatt thermic power plant near Catalagzi region in northern Zonguldak province, it was reported on Tuesday.

    Catalagzi Thermic Power Plant (CATES) officials told A.A correspondent that a three-expert delegation from VPL company continue to make observations in that region, adding that the studies will be concluded within three days.

    Pointing out that VPL company plans to buy CATES which was put on privatization content, officials said, ''however, CATES was earlier sold to Korona company. Now the contract is expected to be signed. VPL company wants to be a share-holder by purchasing CATES shares. They are very serious in that enterprise. CATES had been built under the liability of VPL company's technical staff. They know all technicalities of CATAS''.

    TRABZON - The number of tourists from Commonwealth of Independent States, who enter and leave Turkey from northern Trabzon province by sea crafts, reduced this year compared to numbers in last year, it was reported on Tuesday.

    A total of 130 thousand tourists entered and left Turkey with 723 sea crafts from Trabzon in first eleven months of 1997.

    KAHTA - Two thousand years old 720 artifacts belonging to Kommagene Kingdom era, which had been found in Nimrod Mountain in Kahta township of Adiyaman province, will be registered, it was reported on Tuesday.

    Those artifacts found in Nimrod Mountain that is defined as the eight wonder of the world and listed in UNESCO's World's Cultural Heritage List, will be marked with numbers.

    The photos of statues, foundations, high reliefs and epitaphs will be taken and an inventory wil be made from those photos within the content of the studies implemented by Kahta Tourism Consultation Directorate.

    The inventory will then be sent to Tourism Ministry, Turkish Representation to UNESCO and other concerned organizations.

    KONYA - Selcuk University Veterinary Faculty Dean Prof. Dr. Veysi Aslan said on Tuesday that animal production in Turkey constitutes 26 percent of total agricultural production and six percent of Gross National Product, adding that this average is between 60 and 70 percent in the developed countries.

    Prof. Dr. Aslan told A.A correspondent that animal production exportation will enable Turkey to overcome the crisis in that sector.

    BURSA - The winter season preparations of hotels and motels in Uludag Mountain, one of the important winter-tourism centers in Turkey, were concluded, it was reported on Tuesday.

    Southern Marmara Touristic Hotel and Motel Managers' Union Chairman Isik Ugurtug told A.A correspondent that the early snow pleased the hotel and motel managers.

    Ugurtug said that the ski-season in Uludag mountain will be opened in next few weeks and Tourism Minister Ibrahim Gurdal will participate in the opening ceremony of the season.

    [08] TURKEY-ISRAEL - PARLIAMENT SPEAKER CETIN RECEIVES ISRAELI DEFENSE MINISTER MORDECHAI - CETIN: ''I AM GLAD ABOUT IMPROVEMENT OF BILATERAL RELATIONS IN EVERY FIELD''

    ANKARA, Dec 9 (A.A) - Parliament Speaker Hikmet Cetin received on Monday Israeli Defense Minister Yitzhak Mordechai, who is currently in Ankara for a three-day official visit.

    Addressing a joint statement after the meeting, Parliament Speaker Cetin said that he is pleased with the improvement of Turkish-Israeli relations in every field, adding that ''I would like to point out that the cooperation is beneficial for the two countries especially in the field of military training and defense industry and it is not directed against any third country.''

    ''We favour installation of peace between Israel and Arab countries as soon as possible and this will prevent terrorism in the region,'' said Cetin.

    Noting that Turkey is the sole islam country which extends support to the Palestinian issue and also cooperates with Israel, Cetin stressed that ''I think Turkey will play the necassary role to install peace in the Middle East by pursuing this policy.''

    Israeli Defense Minister Yitzhak Mordechai said in his part that the cooperation is against every kind of threat which is directed to the two countries, adding that ''these good relations are not directed against any country and it is open to third countries, which favour peace and stability. For example if Jordan, Egypt and other countries wish to participate in this cooperation, we will be pleased.''

    Pointing out that Israel will do its best to reach lasting peace in the region, Mordechai added that ''the aim of the peace is to recognize the right to live in freedom to everybody and to provide the security of the Israeli people.''

    Israeli Defense Minister Mordechai and the accompanying delegation will proceed to Istanbul on Tuesday.

    [09] TURKEY-AZERBAIJAN-OIL - SOCAR VICE PRESIDENT ILHAM ALIYEV: ''PASSING OF MAIN OIL PIPELINE VIA ARMENIA IS OUT OF QUESTION''

    ANKARA, Dec 9 (A.A) - Azerbaijani State Petroleum Company SOCAR Vice President and Azerbaijani President Haydar Aliyev's son Ilham Aliyev said on Monday that the passing of main oil pipeline via Armenia is out of question.

    Responding to the questions of reporters, Aliyev said that the pipeline will not pass via Armenia even Armenia offers to give some concessions to Azerbaijan.

    Aliyev said that SOCAR and International Consortium's Operation Company AIOC have reached to a consensus of opinion in Working Group meetings regarding the structure of pipeline.

    Aliyev said they try to make Azerbaijan be the biggest principle share- holder of the pipeline company by purchasing the majority of shares.

    Ilham Aliyev said, ''we will decide on the route of oil pipeline through transit cost and conditions of concerned countries.''

    [10] TURKEY-INTERNAL - ''NO-CONFIDENCE MOTION'' FILED AGAINST RURAL AFFAIRS AND HOUSING MINISTER TOPCU

    ANKARA, Dec 9 (A.A) - A no confidence motion was filed against Rural Affairs and Housing Minister Yasar Topcu by True Path Party (DYP) Deputy Chairman Turhan Guven and his four friends on Monday. The motion will be voted in the parliament on December 10.

    Opposition parliamentarians accused Public Affairs Minister Yasar Topcu of corruption over a motorway project along the Black Sea coast.

    Under Turkish parliamentary tradition the government resigns if it loses a confidence motion against a minister.

    The government was defeated last week in the vote on whether to hold a censure motion debate. The defeat was helped by the boycott of the Republican People Party (CHP) which does not take part in the government but supports it in the parliament.

    The opposition will need an absolute majority of all parliamentarians to pass Wednesday's vote against Topcu.

    [11] TURKEY-BRITAIN - PRIME MINISTER YILMAZ LEAVES FOR BRITAIN

    ANKARA, Dec 9 (A.A) - Prime Minister Mesut Yılmaz left for Britain on Tuesday to hold official contacts and meet British Prime Minister Tony Blair.

    State Minister Cavit Kavak accompanies Prime Minister Yılmaz in his visit to London.

    [12] TURKEY-POLITICS - COMMISSION REPORT REGARDING PARLIAMENTARY IMMUNITIES OF AGAR AND BUCAK SUBMITTED TO PARLIAMENT

    ANKARA, Dec 9 (A.A) - Constitution-Justice Joint Commission report which was prepared regarding the lifting of parliamentary immunities of True Path Party (DYP) deputies Mehmet Agar and Sedat Bucak, was submitted to the parliament on Monday.

    The 12-page report said that the Commission decided to lift the parliamentary immunities of the two parliamentarians in a meeting held on December 4, however members of the Commission from DYP and Welfare Party (RP) voted against the majority.

    [13] CYPRUS - NON GOVERNMENTAL ORGANIZATIONS CONFERENCE IN GREEN LINE

    LEFKOSA, Dec 9 (A.A) - The ''Regional Non-Governmental Organizations (NGO) Conference'', which was organized together by Cyprus Fulbright Commission and American Center that implements social and cultural activities within US Embassy in Lefkosa content to improve and strengthen NGO, was started on Monday in Ledra Palace.

    Turkish and Greek NGO members participate in the three-day conference. Zuhal Orhun and Emel Kurma are representing Turkey in that conference to which nearly 200 NGO members attend.

    Addressing the opening speech of the conference, the US Ambassador to Lefkosa Kenneth Brill said, ''this conference is very important since it gathers a number of people who give effort to provide better life conditions for their nations'', emphasizing that he is pleased with the great attendence to that conference.

    Brill said that they organized that conference to provide contribution to make NGO more effective, powerful and dynamic.

    Underlining the importance of NGO, Brill said that the signing of ''Agreement of Banning Land Mines'' has a considerable importance. Brill said, ''the increasing global role of NGO, which do not take into consideration financial interest, is the proof for improvement and strengthening of democratic values.''

    Brill said that diplomatists and parliamentarians will start to work together with NGO in the next century.

    [14] TURKEY-INTERNAL - CLOSURE CASE OF WELFARE PARTY GRADUALLY COMES TO THE END

    ANKARA, Dec 8 (A.A) - The Closure Case of the Welfare Party (RP) which was filed by Court of Appeal Chief Prosecutor Vural Savas before the Constitutional Court gradually comes to the end, it is reported on Tuesday.

    Constitutional Court President Yekta Gungor Ozden had submitted the report of the Rapporteur to members of the Constitution and called the delegation to convene on December 10.

    ''We will begin discussion of the case on Wednesday and it will be completed within seven to 10 days,'' Yekta Gungor Ozden had earlier stated.

    Ozden said reading of the case reports would take around three to four days and be followed by general debate, but the debate could be extended if court members call for the investigation to be broadened.

    Rapporteur Yusuf Ozturk said in his report that the Welfare Party should be closed due to Articles 68-69 of the Constitution and also to the concerned articles of the Political Parties Code, but his opinions are not binding to the court.

    Chief Prosecutor Vural Savas filed a case before the Constitutional Court on May 21 1997 and called for the closure of RP under Articles 68/4 and 69/6 of the Constitution. The concerned articles foresee the closure of a political party, if it becomes focus of all anti-secular activities.

    [15] TURKEY-EU - LUXEMBOURG FOREIGN MINISTER JACQUES POOS: ''MEETINGS THAT WILL BE HELD WITH TURKEY WITHIN TWO DAYS ARE VERY IMPORTANT''

    BRUSSELS, Dec 9 (A.A) - Luxembourg Foreign Minister Jacques Poos said on Monday that the meetings that will be held with Turkish government within two days are very important.

    Addressing a statement to the press, Poos recalled that he will meet Foreign Minister Ismail Cem on Tuesday and Prime Minister Mesut Yılmaz will visit Luxembourg on Wednesday, adding that ''I will make use of these opportunities.''

    Responding to a question regarding Turkey, Poos stated that ''Turkey is a candidate state and this has been confirmed many times. We try to determine a strategy to prepare Turkey for full membership. Turkey also says that it is not ready for full membership, because it has several problems and it does not wish the negotiations to start now. We will speak with Turkey regarding these issues in detail.''

    Describing the invitation of Prime Minister Yılmaz and Foreign Minister Cem to the dinner with 15 EU countries in the second day of Luxembourg Summit as a ''conventional attitute,'' Poos added that Turkey and EU countries have not responded to the invitation, yet.

    ''We have double proposal for Turkey. The first of them is European Conference, which is not linked with the expansion process and the second is rapproachment strategy between EU-Turkey. I am sure Turkey is interested in the latter and we will introduce the two proposals together.''

    [16] TURKEY-TAX REFORM - INCOME TAX FIRST BRACKET TO BE ONE BILLION LIRA

    ANKARA, Dec 9 (A.A) - New tax reform draft foresees 100 percent increase in the first bracket of income tax, raising it to one billion lira from 500 million lira.

    Tax reform draft will be concluded in Economic and Social Council meeting during this week and will be opened for signutare of Council of Ministers and will be discussed in the parliament next week.

    Finance Ministry continues working on the draft that foresees changes in tax procedure, collection of public receivables, income tax, corporation income tax, Value Added Tax (VAT), property tax, inheritance tax, motor vehicles tax, turnover tax, customs tariff and municipality incomes.

    The minimum average in income tax will be 15 percent and maximum will be 40 percent. Those averages will be 20 and 45 percent in 1998 in accordance with a temporary article. The first bracket to be implemented for the minimum average will be one billion lira next year.

    The reference due sum will be taken into consideration if incomes, which are declared for 1998 by tax payers having commercial and professional revenues, are less than reference due sum decided for 1998.

    Reference due sums will be implemented as 100 percent extra charge in municipalities out of regions having priority in development and as 50 percent discount in the regions having priority in development.

    [17] TURKEY-ISRAEL - ISRAELI DEFENSE MINISTER MORDECHAI VISITS TAI INSTALLATIONS - MORDECHAI: ''I AM IN TURKEY TO SUPPORT TURKISH-ISRAELI COOPERATION''

    ANKARA, Dec 9 (A.A) - Israeli Defense Minister Yitzhak Mordechai, who is currently in Ankara as an official guest of Defense Minister Ismet Sezgin, visited Turkish Space and Aviation Industry (TAI) Installations on Tuesday.

    TAI Director General Jerry Jones held a briefing for Israeli Defense Minister Mordechai and informed him about the structure of TAI and its projects for the future.

    Jerry Jones said Mordechai that TAI is interested in production of UAV (unmanned aircraft vehicle), which is known as ''spy aircrafts'' and they wish to cooperate with Israel, which has high technology in this field.

    Israeli Defense Minister Mordechai said in his part that Israel desires to cooperate with TAI regarding the joint production of attack helicopters.

    Later Mordechai visited the installations where F-16 and CASA type aircrafts are produced.

    Responding to questions of Turkish journalists, Mordechai stated that the aim of his visit is to encourage and support Turkish Armed Forces's cooperation with Israel.

    Mordechai stressed that countries which produce ballistic missiles, use chemical weapons and support terrorism constitute a threat in the region.

    Noting that those countries can direct their threats to Turkey and Israel, Mordechai pointed out that ''in that case, two powerful states will naturally support each other.''

    [18] TURKEY-NORTHERN IRAQ - KDP: ''PUK BURNS OUR VILLAGES AND DESTROYS ENERGY LINES'' - ''11 TERRORISTS SURRENDERED TO US''

    HABUR, Dec 9 (A.A) - While the cross-border operation of Turkish Armed Forces continues in Northern Iraq, Kurdistan Democratic Party (KDP) said on Tuesday that Patriotic Union for Kurdistan (PUK) forces continues to burn villages and destroy energy lines in Northern Iraq. KDP officials stated that nine PUK peshmergas and 11 terrorists surrendered to KDP forces in Diana region, adding that ''PUK forces which attack villages in Devela Siler region together with the separatist terrorist organization, ask for money and sheep. If households do not accept it, they burn the villages. Our struggle with PKK will continue and now they are looking for place to escape. The families who migrated to Iran during the Gulf Crisis are also returning. Recently 38 families escaped from PUK forces and came to Erbil.''

    [19] TURKEY-OIC - TURKEY PARTICIPATES IN OIC SUMMIT WITH A CROWDED DELEGATION HEADED BY PRESIDENT DEMIREL

    TEHRAN, Dec 9 (A.A) - The eighth summit of Organization for Islamic Conference (OIC) Summit started on Tuesday in Tehran.

    Turkey participates in OIC Summit with a crowded delegation which is headed by President Suleyman Demirel.

    The Turkish delegation includes State Ministers Ahat Andican and Rıfat Serdaroglu, Foreign Ministry Undersecretary Korkmaz Haktanır, Foreign Ministry Spokesman Necati Utkan, Foreign Ministry Director General of the Middle Eastern and African Department Aykut Cetirge and Turkish Ambassador to Saudi Arabia Turkekul Kurttekin.

    President of Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) President Rauf Denktas participates in the Summit as an observor. TRNC Defense and Foreign Minister Taner Etkin accompanies Denktas.

    Many head of states and emirs participate in the Summit, while several countries are represented by prime ministers, deputy prime ministers and foreign ministers.

    The summit will last for three days and end on Thursday.

    [20] TURKEY-US - JOINT ECONOMIC COUNCIL MEETING STARTS

    WASHINGTON, Dec 9 (A.A) - Turkish-American Joint Economic Council (JEC) meeting started on Monday.

    Turkish delegation including the representatives from Foreign Trade and Treasury Undersecretaries and Energy and Agriculture Ministries is led by Foreign Trade Undersecretary Yavuz Ege and American delegation including representatives from State Department and Commerce, Energy and Treasury Ministries is led by US Deputy State Secretary Alan Larson in JEC meetings in US State Department.

    Working group meetings were held after the opening organized as General Council. The issues of ''bilateral trade'', ''increase in trade volume between two countries'', '' energy'', ''agriculture'' and ''the quotas imposed on Turkish textile products'' were taken up in the meetings.

    JEC meetings were held for the first time since 1993.

    US does not impose quota on European Union (EU) products. Turkey that realizes cooperation with the US in Customs Union (CU) process asks the US to lift those quotas. Ankara wants to sign an agreement with Washington like the ''Fairness Agreement'' between the US and the EU.

    The first step regarding the issue was taken during State Minister Isin Celebi's visit to Washington last week and the level of quotas imposed on two textile productions were increased. Further steps are expected to be launched regarding the issue during Prime Minister Mesut Yilmaz's visit to Washington next week. US Commerce Minister Willam Daley will pay an official visit to Ankara on early 1998.

    US State Department said in a written statement regarding JEC meetings that the meetings are the confirmation of strengthening of commercial and economic relations between two countries.

    Meanwhile, Turkish-American JEC meetings will be concluded today. The issues of ''energy'' and ''textile'' will be taken up in today's JEC meetings. The issues of ''trade'', ''agriculture'' and ''investment'' were taken up in the meetings on Monday.

    [21] TURKEY-GERMANY - TURCO-GERMAN CHAMBER OF COMMERCE AND INDUSTRY CHAIRMAN KAISER: ''TURKEY AND GERMANY ARE PARTNERS''

    ADANA, Dec 9 (A.A) - The issues of ''cooperation'' and ''improvement of commercial relations between two countries'' were taken up in the meeting organized by Turco-German Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Adana Chamber of Industry (ASO) and Adana Chamber of Commerce (ATO) in southern Adana province on Tuesday.

    Turco-German Chamber of Commerce and Industry Chairman Horst Kaiser said in the meeting that their goal is to improve cooperation between two countries in industry, trade and services sectors; to increase exportation and importation and to raise number of investments. Kaiser said, ''Turkey is European. Turkey and Germany are partners.''

    ASO Deputy Chairman Umit Ozgumus said that the economic relations between two countries have further improved.

    Calling German businessmen to invest in Adana, Ozgumus said, ''economic relations between two countries have further improved by Customs Union.''

    ATO Deputy Chairman Atilla Eselioglu said, ''Germany is an important market for Turkish businessmen. The level of commercial relations between two countries should be higher than existing volume.''

    Germany's Honorary Consulor to Adana Teyfik Kisacik and a number of industrialists and businessmen also participated in the meeting.

    [22] TURKEY-ECONOMY - TURKEY AIMS TO PRODUCE 2,2 MILLION TONNES OF SUGAR IN 1998

    ANKARA, Dec 9 (A.A) - Turkey Sugar Plants (TURKSEKER) aims to purchase 14, 632 sugar beets by paying 170 trillion liras for the 1997-98 term, it is reported on Tuesday.

    Addressing a statement to A.A correspondent, General Manager of Turkseker Mustafa Turan said that ''Turkey's total output will be 2.2 million tonnes.

    Turan said Turkseker, which runs 25 of the 28 sugar plants in Turkey, would produce 1.85 million tonnes in 1997/98 and three private plants about 350, 000 tonnes.

    Turan said Turkseker planned sugar exports in 1997/98 but declined to give any amount. ''We are hoping to continue exports next year,'' he said.

    ''So far 170,000 tonnes have physically been shipped out and shipments continue,'' he said.

    He said Turkseker would pay farmers 170 trillion lira for 1996/97 beet purchases, up from 54 trillion lira a year earlier.

    ''We have paid 48 trillion lira so far and will pay the remaining 122 trillion lira in March and April,'' he said.


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