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Turkish Press Review, 01-05-17

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

17.05.2001


CONTENTS

  • [01] US CALLS ON TURKEY TO BE MORE FLEXIBLE ON THE ESDI
  • [02] SCHMIDT: ESDP CANNOT BE CONSIDERED WITHOUT TURKEY
  • [03] COUNCIL OF EUROPE'S PARLIAMENTARY ASSEMBLY MEETINGS IN ISTANBUL
  • [04] VURAL: "EU NOT AGAINST TURKEY'S MEMBERSHIP"
  • [05] TURKEY HOSTS NATO MEETING
  • [06] SOUTH KOREAN DELEGATION AT TURKISH PARLIAMENT
  • [07] AIR FORCE COMMANDER VISITS ATHENS
  • [08] IISS DEBATES TURKISH STANCE IN EUROPE
  • [09] DHKP-C MILITANTS' PROTEST
  • [10] CRIMINAL EXECUTION DRAFT LAW
  • [11] PUBLIC OFFICIALS MAY GET THE RIGHT TO FORM UNIONS
  • [12] PKK IN THE PROCESS OF DISINTEGRATION
  • [13] ISTANBUL SECURITY FORCES' OPERATIONS AGAINST DRUG TRAFFICKING
  • [14] PREVENTIVE MEASURES AGAINST EARTHQUAKES SEMINAR HELD
  • [15] BAGHDAD : "SHALL TURKEY NOT WAIT FOR THE UN AID"
  • [16] AZERBAIJAN PARLIAMENT RATIFIES TURKISH GAS SALE ACCORD
  • [17] EXPRESSION OF COMMITMENT BY THE GOVERNMENT
  • [18] DERVIS:"THIS IS A GOOD OPPORTUNITY"
  • [19] NEW FORMULA BY DERVIS
  • [20] FRENCH GOVERNMENT'S SUPPORT FOR TURKEY
  • [21] MHP THANKS STATE MINISTER DERVIS
  • [22] IMF EXPECTS DETERMINATION
  • [23] POSITIVE DEVELOPMENTS IN FINANCIAL MARKETS
  • [24] A NEW LOAN TO TURKEY
  • [25] WASHINGTON POST ON TURKEY
  • [26] ENGLISH EXPERTS ON THE TURKISH ECONOMY
  • [27] AKCAKOCA'S STATEMENT
  • [28] FINANCIAL TIMES: "IMF LOAN WILL BE A CURE FOR TURKISH ECONOMY"
  • [29] AWARD FOR VAKIFBANK
  • [30] NEW PERIOD IN FINANCE SECTOR
  • [31] ULKER RECEIVES LOAN
  • [32] SYMPOSIUM ON BANKING
  • [33] MEETINGS SEEK TO FIND SOLUTIONS FOR TURKEY
  • [34] PRINTING AND PAPER INDUSTRY FAIR IN ISTANBUL
  • [35] AZERBAIJAN ART NIGHT
  • [36] GOLDEN PERIOD IN TOURISM
  • [37] FROM THE COLUMNS... FROM THE COLUMNS... FROM THE COLUMNS...
  • [38] ROTTEN APPLES BY GUNGOR MENGI (SABAH)

  • [01] US CALLS ON TURKEY TO BE MORE FLEXIBLE ON THE ESDI

    All attentions have been drawn to the US, which is considered to be the leader of the NATO, since neither Turkey nor the EU changes their stance on the European Security and Defense Identity (ESDI). It was stated the US conveyed a message stating the necessity of being more flexible on the ESDI to Turkey. Since the EU is insisting on excluding the non-EU member NATO countries from the establishment process of a European Rapid Reaction Force in 2003, the crisis between Ankara and Brussels is continuing. Foreign Minister Ismail Cem stated two days ago in Brussels that there was no way for Turkey to change her attitude about the ESDI. France, Britain and Germany demand an immediate decision to be taken on placing the NATO facilities at the disposal of the rapid reaction force. Meanwhile Turkey stated she wants to take part in all of the operations where NATO capabilities are used. It was stated the US would propose to both sides to reach a compromise. US Secretary of State Colin Powell and Assistant Secretary of State Marc Grossman said in their meetings with Foreign Minister Cem, "We understand your concerns. We support Europe to take decisions on security matters. We won't let a security problem stemming from Turkey's geographic and strategic importance emerge. We request Turkey to contribute to the works of the ESDI by being more flexible." However, Turkey stated she was not satisfied with those promises since the main problem to be overcome between Turkey and the EU is a matter of bilateral confidence. /Cumhuriyet/

    [02] SCHMIDT: ESDP CANNOT BE CONSIDERED WITHOUT TURKEY

    German Ambassador to Turkey Rudolf Schmidt said European Security and Defense Policy (ESDP) cannot be considered without including Turkey. Stating Turkey comprehended EU attempts to improve its opportunities and facilities concerning its security policies, Schmidt said initiatives to provide Turkey with a special status were still continuing. He added, "Turkey demands to have certain authorities like in the Western European Union. However we should take the facts about the EU into account. I do not view Turkey as an obstacle against the ESDP. No initiative shall be successful without Turkey. The EU is aware of the special conditions of Turkey. EU countries would not launch any initiatives against Turkey. Such an initiative would be a grave mistake." /Cumhuriyet/

    [03] COUNCIL OF EUROPE'S PARLIAMENTARY ASSEMBLY MEETINGS IN ISTANBUL

    The Council of Europe's Parliamentary Assembly spring meetings will be held in Istanbul on May 21-23 upon the invitation of Turkish Parliament Speaker Omer Izgi. Deputy Prime Minister Mesut Yilmaz and Justice Minister Hikmet Sami Turk will make speeches at the meeting. The topics, ranging from financial support for political parties and the prevention of torture to the developments in the Middle East, are expected to be discussed during the meeting. The Council of Europe Parliamentarian Assembly Chairman, Lord Russel-Johnston is scheduled to pay official visits to Ankara and Istanbul before the Assembly meeting on May 17-18. During his stay in Ankara, he will meet with President Ahmet Necdet Sezer, Parliament Speaker Omer Izgi, Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit and Foreign Minister Ismail Cem, Constitutional Court President Mustafa Bumin and the chairmen of the political parties. /Turkish Daily News/

    [04] VURAL: "EU NOT AGAINST TURKEY'S MEMBERSHIP"

    Turkish Secretary General for European Union Affairs, Volkan Vural said that the EU was not working against Turkey, and it featured in plans for EU growth. Speaking at a conference entitled "The EU and Turkey" at Hacettepe University, Vural evaluated the latest developments in Turkish-EU relations. He believes that the EU membership bid is not a new issue as Turkey wanted to be part of Europe since the Ottoman period. He also said that Turkey must take urgent steps in changing certain laws needed for membership, such as parts of the Turkish Penal Code and Constitution, abolishment of the death penalty and removal of restrictions over freedom of expression. /Turkish Daily News/

    [05] TURKEY HOSTS NATO MEETING

    Representatives from 15 NATO countries attended a meeting organized by the NATO Underwater Research Center and hosted by the Turkish Navy. In his opening address, Nazim Cubukcu, the head of the Motion Hydrography and Oceanography department, said that experts in the fields of acoustics, oceanography, physics and data processing all worked at the research center and study how to meet the needs of all the NATO countries. The meeting is due to end on May 18. /Turkish Daily news/

    [06] SOUTH KOREAN DELEGATION AT TURKISH PARLIAMENT

    Chairman of the South Korean Interparliament Friendship Group Kim Chan-Woo and his accompanying delegation have been received at Parliament by Speaker Omer Izgi. The meeting at Parliament was closed to the presss. /Turkish Daily News/

    [07] AIR FORCE COMMANDER VISITS ATHENS

    The meeting of European Air Force commanders has started in Athens. Turkish Air Force Commander Gen. Ergin Celasin is participating in the meeting as Turkey's representative. The meeting is closed to the press, and will end today. /Turkish News/

    [08] IISS DEBATES TURKISH STANCE IN EUROPE

    Contrary to its previous policy of devoting an entire section on Turkey, the International Institute for Strategic Studies' (IIS) report for this year mentioned Turkey only within the scope of future European defense plans, emphasising her key role in their implementation. Devoting a large section to the issue of European defense initiatives, the IISS report said that the attitudes of France and Turkey would be decisive if the issue is to be settled by the end of 2001, as already proposed. /Turkish News/

    [09] DHKP-C MILITANTS' PROTEST

    The DHKP-C militans disrupted the meeting concerning the 'Turkish prisons and the hunger strikes', held at the General Council of the European Parliament (EP). Three persons, who entered the EP General Council hall with posters, shouted slogans. Then three militants were taken away from the hall. The incident caused negative reactions of the parliamentarians. /Hurriyet/

    [10] CRIMINAL EXECUTION DRAFT LAW

    Criminal Execution draft law was accepted at the Plenary Session of the Turkish Grand National Assembly (TGNA) yesterday. Minister of Justice, Hikmet Sami Turk, made a speech during the debates concerning the draft law and said, "All the applications in the prisons will be open for the control of the judiciary and the civilians. Criminal Execution Judges will be appointed by the Supreme Council of Judges and Prosecutors." /Sabah/

    [11] PUBLIC OFFICIALS MAY GET THE RIGHT TO FORM UNIONS

    The Parliament's Planning and Budget Committee approved late Tuesday a bill envisaging that public officials be granted the right to form unions. The bill is designed to allow public officials to engage in collective bargaining talks, in line with an amendment to the Constitution to that effect. It also allows the public officials to form a union without obtaining permission. /Turkish News/

    MILITARY PLANE CRASHES, KILLING 34 SOLDIERS

    A military plane crashed over Akcadag province of Malatya on Wednesday afternoon killing 34 soldiers and crew. The Casa CN-235 cargo plane was carrying members of Turkey's Special Forces from Diyarbakir to Ankara when it crashed. President Ahmet Necdet Sezer, Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit and many high-level officials sent messages of condolences to the Chief of the General Staff on the occasion. /All papers/

    [12] PKK IN THE PROCESS OF DISINTEGRATION

    The disintegration of the terrorist organization PKK is continuing. According to the 'Al Hayat' magazine, published in the Middle East, hundreds of Kurds of the Syrian origin left the PKK. It was further stated that 2,000 Syrian Kurds were trying to return to Syria. /Sabah/

    [13] ISTANBUL SECURITY FORCES' OPERATIONS AGAINST DRUG TRAFFICKING

    Istanbul Security Chief Kazim Abanoz stated security forces seized 166 kg of heroin, market value of which is TL 10 trillion in Europe, via two operations. Abanoz said they would continue with their operations against drug trafficking. /Cumhuriyet/

    [14] PREVENTIVE MEASURES AGAINST EARTHQUAKES SEMINAR HELD

    Bogazici University Kandilli Observatory and Earthquake Research Institute Director Ahmet Mete Isikara talked about possible earthquakes in Turkey, saying: "Yes there will be more earthquakes. People should be concerned about the possibility of further quakes." The institute held an Introduction on Preventive Measures Against Earthquakes" seminar with cooperation between the Istanbul Trade Chamber (ITO). "There are four main topics which have to be dealt with a natural disaster and they are preparation, reducing danger, preventive measures and medical treatment.", Isikara indicated. After the Aug. 17 quake, local administrations and NGOs performed excellent work, he added. "But all of them including military units need cooperation. Our seminar's aim is to set up that cooperation." /Turkish News/

    [15] BAGHDAD : "SHALL TURKEY NOT WAIT FOR THE UN AID"

    Baghdad Administration called on Turkey to improve her relations with Iraq without waiting for the UN Sanctions Committee's decision on the issue. Iraqi daily El Tavra said, "Turkey, who previously declared to have suffered millions of dollars of losses because of the US embargo on Iraq, must launch initiatives to reestablish the economic and commercial relations with Iraq. Ankara's waiting for the UN Committe's decision is of no use since the Committee will never take such a decision." Iraqi Deputy Prime Minister Tarik Aziz declared yesterday if Turkey and Jordan support the new US policy over Iraq, Iraq might end the oil exports to those countries. Meanwhile it was stated the US prepared a new draft for the changes in her policy over Iraq and distributed it to Security Council permanent members Britain, France, Russia and China. The aim of the draft document was to reduce negative consequences of the US embargo on the Iraqi civilians. /Cumhuriyet/

    [16] AZERBAIJAN PARLIAMENT RATIFIES TURKISH GAS SALE ACCORD

    Azerbaijan's parliament Tuesday ratified a key deal to sell natural gas from Azerbaijan's huge Shah Deniz field in Caspian Sea to Turkey. The agreement was signed by the Azerbaijani and Turkish Presidents March 12, and was seen as cementing a US-backed energy alliance between the countries. "We will begin transporting gas in 2004 starting with 2 billion cubic meters" said Asya Manafova, head of the Azerbaijani parliamentary commission for nature, energy and ecology. /Turkish Daily News/

    [17] EXPRESSION OF COMMITMENT BY THE GOVERNMENT

    The coalition leaders reinforced their support for the new economic program. Leaders promised to use the public resources for enhancing social justice. The letter sent by the coalition leaders to the IMF together with the letter of intent was announced yesterday. The letter said, "The government is firmly determined to implement these policies and take the necessary measures defined in the letter of intent." The letter also said the financial support of the IMF will result in stability and confidence in the markets and structural reforms will be easily implemented to achieve stability and social justice. /Milliyet/

    [18] DERVIS:"THIS IS A GOOD OPPORTUNITY"

    State Minister for Economy, Kemal Dervis, left for Paris yesterday to attend the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) meeting. Before his departure, Dervis told reporters they received the financial source expected from the IMF. Underlining that IMF had never given such a financial support to any country, Dervis said, this loan should be used in the most effective way. /Turkiye/

    [19] NEW FORMULA BY DERVIS

    State Minister Kemal Dervis, who went to Paris yesterday to attend the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) meeting, said he would try to decrease Turkey's domestic debts and exchange some of them with the debts in foreign exchanges. Dervis met 30 OECD member countries' Ministers of Economy and Environment. Dervis was accompanied by Minister of the Environment, Fevzi Aytekin in Paris. During the meetings, Dervis talked about Turkey's program to overcome the economic crisis to the OECD member countries' Ministers and maintained bilateral contacts. Dervis said, "We want to restructure our debt system and to extend the terms of the debts. The preparations concerning the issue are at an initial stage." /Hurriyet/

    [20] FRENCH GOVERNMENT'S SUPPORT FOR TURKEY

    The French government announced that they were pleased with the loan extended by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to Turkey and they supported Ankara's efforts concerning the economy. Deputy Spokesman of the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Bernard Valero, said, "It is very pleasing that the international finance institutions extend an additional financial support in great amounts to Turkey so she can overcome the economic crisis. We might contribute to the reforms in the banking. /Hurriyet/

    [21] MHP THANKS STATE MINISTER DERVIS

    One of the government coalition parties, Nationalist Action Party (MHP), evaluated the letter of intent and new economic program which are both approved by the IMF as positive. MHP Group Acting Chairman Ismail Kose said "This is the success of the government. We thank State Minister Kemal Dervis for his contributions." /Cumhuriyet/

    [22] IMF EXPECTS DETERMINATION

    IMF Deputy Chairman Stanley Fischer said IMF is pleased with the new economic program of Turkey. Fischer said, " The IMF is proving its support for this program by extending this extraordinary amount of financial assistance." Fischer said following the approval of Turkey's economic program by the IMF Executive Directors, the success of the program depends on both the determination of the Turkish government on implementation and the support of the private sector. Fischer said, "The banking reform is a must, because the economic crisis arose from the structural weakness in the financial system. Especially changing the administrative structure of state-owned banks completely will contribute to the strengthening of the financial sector." /Milliyet/

    [23] POSITIVE DEVELOPMENTS IN FINANCIAL MARKETS

    Prior to the announcement of the new economic program and the approval of the letter of intent by the IMF, there was a positive atmosphere in the financial markets yesterday. The interest rates of state bonds decreased by 6-7 points and repo by 5 points. The dollar rate also decreased by 13,000TL. /Milliyet/

    [24] A NEW LOAN TO TURKEY

    Reportedly, the European Investment Bank turned a green light to Turkey to benefit from the $8.5-billion fund, allocated for candidate countries. The Bank has granted Turkey about $2-billion since 1965. The last 600-million Euro slice of this amount was approved following the recent earthquake in Turkey. /Turkiye/

    [25] WASHINGTON POST ON TURKEY

    'Washington Post' daily evaluated the International Monetary Fund's (IMF) decision to ensure additional aid package to Turkey and wrote, "This support opens a path for Turkey so she can restructure her economy." In the news titled "Turkey ensures IMF's support," the 'Washington Post' stated that Turkey had provided a new urgent loan amounting to 8 billion US dollars and added, "Turkey was provided with the capability of paying the debts and building the confidence in the economy thanks to this support." /Hurriyet/

    [26] ENGLISH EXPERTS ON THE TURKISH ECONOMY

    Investment experts in London are also supporting Turkey. Vincent Megard, an expert of AXA Investment Fund, is among those, who said they might increase the share of the Turkish Treasury bonds in their portfolios. He described the package of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) as good news. Meanwhile, an investment expert of Bear Stearns International, Tim Ash, said that something has changed when Dervis came to Turkey. /Hurriyet/

    [27] AKCAKOCA'S STATEMENT

    Chairman of the Banking Regulation and Supervision Board (BDDK), Engin Akcakoca, explained the change in the banking sector, the basic principle of the new economic program, and the road to be followed during this process. Akcakoca held a meeting yesterday and said the equity capital and the balance-sheet structures of the private banks should be strengthened. /Sabah/

    [28] FINANCIAL TIMES: "IMF LOAN WILL BE A CURE FOR TURKISH ECONOMY"

    The British daily Financial Times evaluated the new loan approved by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) to Turkey. Pointing to the loan as a cure for the Turkish economy, the article said, "The new program is a brave step and it is supported by the people. The current weakness of Turkey does not stem from the economy but the political structure." /Turkiye/

    [29] AWARD FOR VAKIFBANK

    Europay International awarded Vakifbank for its accomplishment in bank cards. Last year Vakifbank gave the maximum number of Maestro bank card among the banks in Europe. According to a statement issued by Vakifbank, in 2000, the Bank gave 6,366,751 Maestro bank cards. /Turkiye/

    [30] NEW PERIOD IN FINANCE SECTOR

    Tax Identity Number application will be also carried out in finance sector at the beginning of September following vehicle and real estate purchases and sales. Accordingly, persons without a Tax Identity Number, cannot open an account, get loan or foreign currency. /Turkiye/

    [31] ULKER RECEIVES LOAN

    Kuveyt Turk Finance extended $10 million to Ulker for purchasing raw material. The deputy chairman of Kuwait Turk Finance, Fawaz Al Issa said they extended $200 million in loans for supporting the production in Turkey and they may bring more resources from Gulf countries if required. /Milliyet/

    [32] SYMPOSIUM ON BANKING

    Yeditepe University organized a symposium titled "Restructuring in Banking Sector After the Economic Crisis". The symposium will be held today in its Nakkastepe Campus, Istanbul. World Bank's consultant and a Professor in Columbia University Frederic Mishkin will a deliver a speech titled "The Elimination of Financial Crisis in Developing Countries and Financial Policies" at the symposium. /Milliyet/

    [33] MEETINGS SEEK TO FIND SOLUTIONS FOR TURKEY

    The "Suggested Solutions to Turkey's Problems" meetings will be held in 11 cities between May 21-25 under the auspices of universities and nongovernmental organizations (NGOs). The topic for the conference is "Basic Targets and Suggested Solutions in the 100 years of the Republic of Turkey". Some 12 universities and 22 unions, NGOs and occupational institutions will hold meetings. /Turkish News/

    [34] PRINTING AND PAPER INDUSTRY FAIR IN ISTANBUL

    The printing technology companies exhibit their products at the 9th Printing and Paper Industry Fair in Istanbul, attended by 640 institutions and representatives from 29 countries. Heidelberg's Chairman of the Executive Board to Turkey, Baskurt Okaygun, evaluated the fair and said, "Some people said the fair should not have been organized due to the economic crisis. However, we defended the idea that the fair should be organized and the industry should be encouraged. Although Turkey is suffering an economic crisis, Heidelberg Company is continuing with its support to Turkey. /Sabah/

    [35] AZERBAIJAN ART NIGHT

    An Azerbaijan Art Night was organized at the State Painting and Sculpture Museum in Ankara last night. A number of Azeri artists joined the night and staged various performances. /Turkiye/

    [36] GOLDEN PERIOD IN TOURISM

    Turkey reached a significant success in tourism sector for the first four months of 2001. Turkish Union of Travel Agencies (TURSAB) Chairman Basaran Ulusoy said the reservations for the summer period are higher than expected. Ulusoy said "There was a 17% increase in the tourism revenues of the first four months of 2001 compared to last year. Our capacity is capable of meeting the increasing demand." /Cumhuriyet/

    [37] FROM THE COLUMNS... FROM THE COLUMNS... FROM THE COLUMNS...

    [38] ROTTEN APPLES BY GUNGOR MENGI (SABAH)

    Columnist Gungor Mengi writes on the financial aid extended by the IMF to Turkey. A summary of his column is as follows:

    "State Minister for Economy Dervis' statements and the news that the IMF will extend financial aid in the amount of $12.8 billion created an atmosphere of hope. If this optimism turns into a self-confidence in a very short time, Turkey can recapture growth in economy. The British newspaper Financial Times wrote that the weakness in Turkey stemmed not from economy but politics and the diagnosis is correct.

    The IMF will extend the credit if Turkey keeps her word on implementing reforms in four slices until November. If the program is implemented, the economic situation will get better every day. However, politics used to profitting at the expense of the State has to accept this foreseen change and politicians should not enter into games not to lose their status and thereby leading to a controversy concerning the Government. The Financial Times writes that Dervis has the strong support of the President and the Armed Forces whereas the Coalition Government is reluctant in giving this support. This suspicion has to be eradicated right away. Deputy Prime Minister Mesut Yilmaz told his friends the previous day that state-owned banks are taken away from the hands of the Government like it or not. From now on the State will not own any banks. Public banking where political influence played a significant role was the quagmire of corruption. If this swamp is dried up as soon as possible, unqualified and unethical people will not enter politics. However, the ruling parties have to stand by the program. We should be able to support the Government eyes closed. The program should be the Government's not Dervis'.

    In order to ensure such a confidence in a short while, delayed revision in the Government should be made as soon as possible and rotten apples in the basket should be taken away. Dervis is right in saying that to support the program is the duty of everyone who loves his country. It is a crime to keep those who will cause Turkey to lose time in the Government due to calculations within the party."


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