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Turkish Press Review, 02-08-06

Turkish Press Review Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: Turkish Directorate General of Press and Information <http://www.byegm.gov.tr>

<LINK href="http://www.byegm.gov.tr_yayinlarimiz_chr_pics_css/tpr.css" rel=STYLESHEET type=text/css> <map name="FPMap1"> </map> <map name="FPMap1"></map> Press &amp; Information Turkish Press Summary of the political and economic news in the Turkish press this morning

06.08.2002

ECEVIT: “CONVENING PARLIAMENT TO CHANGE ELECTIONS SYSTEM WOULD BE DIFFICULT” THREE MINISTERS REPLACED DUE TO ELECTIONS HALICI CRITICIZES DERVIS OVER POLITICAL CONTACTS CAKMAKOGLU: “TURKEY OPPOSES ANY MILITARY ACTION AGAINST IRAQ” FOREIGN MINISTER GUREL TO VISIT JORDAN YILMAZ: “NOW IT IS THE EU’S TURN” VURAL: “TURKEY WANTS TO WIN A DATE TO START NEGOTIATIONS FROM THE COPENHAGEN SUMMIT” US STATE DEPARTMENT: “THE EU REFORMS AIM TO BOOST TURKEY’S CHANCES OF JOINING THE EU” FRANCE PLEASED ABOUT REFORMS IN TURKEY BROK: “TURKEY WAS COURAGEOUS IN ADOPTING EU REFORMS” FIORI: “TURKEY’S EU REFORMS ARE A GREAT STEP FORWARD” DENMARK: ”PASSING HARMONIZATION PACKAGE WILL HELP TURKEY WITH THE EU” ROMAN COLOSSEUM ILLUMINATED TO MARK DEATH PENALTY ABOLITION IN TURKEY FROM THE COLUMNS… FROM THE COLUMNS… FROM THE COLUMNS… PRESSURE FOR DERVIS TO STEP DOWN BY FIKRET BILA (MILLIYET) DERVIS AND THE NATURE OF POLITICS BY OMER CELIK (STAR)

CONTENTS

  • [01] ECEVIT: “CONVENING PARLIAMENT TO CHANGE ELECTIONS SYSTEM WOULD BE DIFFICULT”
  • [02] THREE MINISTERS REPLACED DUE TO ELECTIONS
  • [03] HALICI CRITICIZES DERVIS OVER POLITICAL CONTACTS
  • [04] CAKMAKOGLU: “TURKEY OPPOSES ANY MILITARY ACTION AGAINST IRAQ”
  • [05] FOREIGN MINISTER GUREL TO VISIT JORDAN
  • [06] YILMAZ: “NOW IT IS THE EU’S TURN”
  • [07] VURAL: “TURKEY WANTS TO WIN A DATE TO START NEGOTIATIONS FROM THE COPENHAGEN SUMMIT”
  • [08] US STATE DEPARTMENT: “THE EU REFORMS AIM TO BOOST TURKEY’S CHANCES OF JOINING THE EU”
  • [09] FRANCE PLEASED ABOUT REFORMS IN TURKEY
  • [10] BROK: “TURKEY WAS COURAGEOUS IN ADOPTING EU REFORMS”
  • [11] FIORI: “TURKEY’S EU REFORMS ARE A GREAT STEP FORWARD”
  • [12] DENMARK: ”PASSING HARMONIZATION PACKAGE WILL HELP TURKEY WITH THE EU”
  • [13] ROMAN COLOSSEUM ILLUMINATED TO MARK DEATH PENALTY ABOLITION IN TURKEY
  • [14] FROM THE COLUMNS… FROM THE COLUMNS… FROM THE COLUMNS…
  • [15] PRESSURE FOR DERVIS TO STEP DOWN BY FIKRET BILA (MILLIYET)
  • [16] DERVIS AND THE NATURE OF POLITICS BY OMER CELIK (STAR)

  • [01] ECEVIT: “CONVENING PARLIAMENT TO CHANGE ELECTIONS SYSTEM WOULD BE DIFFICULT”

    Speaking on news channel NTV yesterday, Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit said that it would be difficult to convene Parliament in order to change the elections system. “Parliament has just taken a decision for early elections and it would be improper to convene it again,” Ecevit said. He declined to comment on reports that some deputies from his Democratic Left Party (DSP) wanted Economy Minister Kemal Dervis to resign, stating, “It wouldn’t be proper for me to say anything on this issue.” /Cumhuriyet/

    [02] THREE MINISTERS REPLACED DUE TO ELECTIONS

    Interior Minister Rustu Kazim Yucelen, Transportation Minister Oktay Vural and Justice Minister Hikmet Sami Turk resigned today, as required by law, five days after a decision for elections was published in the Official Gazette. Independent candidates were assigned to these posts as follows: Professor Aysel Celikel will be the new justice minister, Professor Naci Kinacioglu will be the new transportation minister and Muzaffer Ecemis, former Manisa governor and Interior Ministry undersecretary, has been assigned as the new interior minister. /Star/

    [03] HALICI CRITICIZES DERVIS OVER POLITICAL CONTACTS

    Democratic Left Party (DSP) group deputy leader Emrehan Halici held a meeting with DSP Secretary General Suleyman Yagiz and Accountant General Mecit Sekercioglu at Parliament yesterday. The meeting was similar to one in which Halici called on then Deputy Prime Minister Husamettin Ozkan to resign. At a press conference after the meeting, Halici told reporters that State Minister for the Economy Kemal Dervis was participating in tricks against the DSP whether he intended to or not. “Even while those who left the DSP are still seeking to define themselves, Dervis is acting like the leader of a formation made up of them and other circles,” he added. “What’s more, he has suggested to Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit, who since the day he established the DSP has never heeded calls to ‘unite the left,’ a union which is broader but which lacks principles. Dervis thinks that a union is necessary on the left, but we must ask Mr. Dervis why he stayed silent when the DSP’s group in Parliament was being divided.” Stating that Dervis participating in a political formation was perfectly normal, Halici added, “However, as a member of the government, we will have nothing to do with those who play tricks on our party.” /Aksam/

    [04] CAKMAKOGLU: “TURKEY OPPOSES ANY MILITARY ACTION AGAINST IRAQ”

    Speaking to reporters yesterday, Defense Minister Sabahattin Cakmakoglu stated that Turkey was opposed to any military operation being taken against Iraq. Iraq’s territorial integrity should be protected, he added. Cakmakoglu commented that Turkey was continuing to recommend to the Iraqi regime that it fulfill what the US is asking of it, namely letting United Nations inspectors enter the country and carry out their mission. Cakmakoglu remarked that a possible military intervention would not affect Turkey’s election agenda. /Turkiye/

    [05] FOREIGN MINISTER GUREL TO VISIT JORDAN

    Foreign Minister Sukru Sina Gurel along with an accompanying delegation will travel to Amman, Jordan today to pay an official visit. Jordan’s possible role in a US operation and King Abdullah’s recent talks with the US on the issue make this a key visit in efforts to head off US plans for military intervention. The Turkish delegation will be briefed by Jordan’s officials about recent developments in the Arab world and Baghdad. During the meeting the two sides, which oppose an operation in the region, will search for a peaceful solution to the issue. /Cumhuriyet/

    [06] YILMAZ: “NOW IT IS THE EU’S TURN”

    Deputy Prime Minister and Motherland Party (ANAP) leader Mesut Yilmaz yesterday met with ambassadors from the European Union member states at the Secretariat General for European Union Affairs. Yilmaz told the ambassadors that Turkey had done its part for its EU membership bid and that now it was the EU’s turn to respond in kind. /Turkiye/

    [07] VURAL: “TURKEY WANTS TO WIN A DATE TO START NEGOTIATIONS FROM THE COPENHAGEN SUMMIT”

    Appearing on NTV yesterday, Secretary-General for European Union Affairs Volkan Vural said that Turkey could obtain full EU membership by 2008 if it obtains a date to start negotiations at December’s Copenhagen summit. “We expect to get a date for negotiations during the summit,” added Vural. Vural also said that the Copenhagen summit would be a turning point for Turkey. /Milliyet/

    [08] US STATE DEPARTMENT: “THE EU REFORMS AIM TO BOOST TURKEY’S CHANCES OF JOINING THE EU”

    US State Department spokesman Phil Reeker yesterday said that the historic steps towards European Union accession that Turkey’s Parliament took on Friday were meant to boost the nation’s chances of joining the European Union. Reeker stressed the United States’ “firm support” for Turkey’s EU membership bid. /Turkiye/

    [09] FRANCE PLEASED ABOUT REFORMS IN TURKEY

    French Foreign Ministry spokesman Bernard Valero stated yesterday that France had been pleased last week to see the Turkish Parliament adopt a package of European Union harmonization laws. He remarked that the reforms constituted a step towards achieving further democratization in Turkey and that by abolishing the death penalty, Turkey had also fulfilled a requirement of the Council of Europe, a European organization committed to promoting such principles as democracy, human rights and the rule of law, and to which Turkey is a member. /Sabah/

    [10] BROK: “TURKEY WAS COURAGEOUS IN ADOPTING EU REFORMS”

    European Parliament Foreign Affairs Commission Chairman Elmar Brok, also an EU rapporteur responsible for submitting evaluation reports to the commission, told Hurriyet yesterday that he believed Turkey had been courageous in adopting the harmonization reforms and that the EU would take into account the recent positive developments in its Progress Report this October. However, Mr. Brok also pointed out that the EU Commission would shape its report by taking into consideration the actual implementation of these laws. On the subject of the coming elections in Turkey, Brok emphasized the importance of a government committed to the implementation of the EU laws. “I believe that in the elections, parties who said ‘yes’ to the reforms will enjoy greater public support than those who said ‘no’,” he added. /Hurriyet/

    [11] FIORI: “TURKEY’S EU REFORMS ARE A GREAT STEP FORWARD”

    European Union Commission spokesman Jean-Christophe Fiori said yesterday that the EU considered the reforms recently adopted by the Turkish Parliament to be a great step forward for the nation. He added that the EU would issue a Progress Report on Oct. 15 containing an initial assessment of the progress of all the candidate countries, including Turkey. However, he continued, if Turkey makes further progress in reforms after October, the EU will take this into consideration before the Copenhagen summit in December. On the issue of giving Turkey a date for the start of accession negotiations, Fiori said that everything depended on how the reforms were implemented and that it was hard to tell at the moment what decision would be made at the summit. Fiori also pointed out that the EU expected Turkey to support the direct talks process in Cyprus, adding however that Turkish-EU relations were a separate matter from the Cyprus issue. /Hurriyet/

    [12] DENMARK: ”PASSING HARMONIZATION PACKAGE WILL HELP TURKEY WITH THE EU”

    European Union Term President Denmark appreciates Turkey’s passage of a package of EU harmonization laws and believes the action will help it in relations with the EU, said yesterday a high-placed official at the Danish Embassy in Ankara who wished to remain nameless. “After these reforms’ passage, we will encourage Turkey to enact the laws passed by Parliament,” he added. “Our first impression of the reforms is that they will play an important role for Turkey making a strong showing at December’s Copenhagen summit.” /Cumhuriyet/

    [13] ROMAN COLOSSEUM ILLUMINATED TO MARK DEATH PENALTY ABOLITION IN TURKEY

    Following the decision taken late last week by Turkey’s Parliament to abolish the death penalty from its laws, the ancient Colosseum in Rome was illuminated to mark this historic action. The practice of illuminating the Colosseum was started in 1999 by the Municipality of Rome, the Italian Ministry of Culture and Arts and Amnesty International in an international campaign to encourage all countries worldwide to abolish capital punishment. /Sabah/

    [14] FROM THE COLUMNS… FROM THE COLUMNS… FROM THE COLUMNS…

    [15] PRESSURE FOR DERVIS TO STEP DOWN BY FIKRET BILA (MILLIYET)

    Columnist Fikret Bila comments on Democratic Left Party (DSP) group deputy leader Emrehan Halici’s call for Economy Minister Kemal Dervis to resign. A summary of his column is as follows:

    “DSP group deputy leader Emrehan Halici yesterday held a press conference yesterday indicating he wanted State Minister Kemal Dervis to make a decision. He emphasized that Dervis would not be able to continue his political contacts with groups which are splitting the DSP. The meaning of Halici’s message is very clear, namely that Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit is calling on Dervis to resign. Husamettin Ozkan was also called to resign this way, and he got the message and resigned, and I wonder if Dervis will follow. Obviously Dervis must have understood the call for resignation that Ecevit sent through Halici. Most probably, he will follow Ozkan. However, another message from circles close to Dervis states that the IMF will release a loan totaling $1.1 billion for Turkey tomorrow and that Dervis will wait for this news. However, in the current atmosphere Ecevit and the government don’t want Dervis to wait for this. In other words, the message to ‘tender your decision in a reasonable period of time’ amounts to ‘resign as soon as possible.’ What brought Ecevit to this point? Why did Ecevit, who previously said that he would not stay if Dervis leaves and also twice asked Dervis to join his own party, decide that Dervis should withdraw? According to circles close to Ecevit and his staff, the story is as follows: ‘The prime minister and the president wanted Dervis to stay in the government, so they got him to withdraw his resignation. However, while they wanted him to stay in the government, they also emphasized that he should keep his political contacts to a minimum level and tend to the economy first of all. Dervis accepted this. However, Dervis increased his political contacts instead of decreasing them. What is more, he continued these contacts in a way that worked against the DSP. He continued to show support for everybody who divides the DSP. This is not a proper way to do things. Dervis was treated with tolerance so he could act properly, but he started to abuse this.’ According to Ecevit’s staff, the latest development that stretched his patience to its limits was Dervis’s contacts in Istanbul: ‘After returning from the US, Mr. Dervis met with Mr. Ecevit. Following this meeting, he said that he would hold political contacts to the degree that his duty as a minister allowed but still concentrate on the economy. However, he proceeded to neglect the economy while dealing with an intensive round of contacts. During his last visit to Istanbul, he met not only with Erdal Inonu, but also with Ozkan. Before these meetings, he also met with former Foreign Minister Ismail Cem. He said that he supported their movement, meaning New Turkey (YT). His meeting with Ozkan stretched Ecevit’s patience to its limits. He is clearly the one who is dividing the DSP and he stated that he would continue to support the YT’s movement. This situation can no longer be endured. If he traffics in politics with people and institutions who initiated a campaign against the DSP, he should leave his DSP chair as a minister and start to deal with politics in the movement which he says he supports.’ What will happen if Dervis wants to continue his duty as a minister in spite of this call? Will he be dismissed from his post? In reply to this question, Ecevit’s staff says, ‘We don’t think that dismissal will be necessary. We think Mr. Dervis got the message and he will do what is necessary.’ This development shows that Ecevit and the DSP have burned Dervis’ bridges. And then the YT and the Republican People’s Party (CHP) remained. If Dervis continues to hold more contacts, these last choices might be decreased to one.”

    [16] DERVIS AND THE NATURE OF POLITICS BY OMER CELIK (STAR)

    Columnist Omer Celik writes on State Minister Kemal Dervis’s search for a broader political formation embracing different colors of the political spectrum. A summary of his column is as follows:

    “Kemal Dervis is trying to achieve a very difficult task, but if he is able do it, Turkey will certainly be the winner. Creating a broad political formation with a ‘social-liberal stance’ is really a remarkable endeavor which deserves appreciation. However, Dervis has some serious problems concerning both the definition of his goal and his methods of reaching it. A question more crucial than which party or formation will emerge victorious in coming elections is the ‘widening of the political sphere.’ Nowadays, there is a heated debate going on about the search for the best government model which can both lead Turkey to the European Union and which can play its cards wisely in case of a US attack on Iraq. Yet, this debate is again at the expense of narrowing the political sphere, and is evolving around a quest to prevent a legal political party, namely the Justice and Development Party (AKP), from coming to power. However, the aim of politics should be sustaining the rule of democratic legitimacy in the system. If political movements which argue that they are ‘new’ or those who rally for a large formation in the center pursue a goal somewhat counter to the above one, Turkey is doomed to suffer from deeper political crises in the future. Dervis cannot be said to have such an outlook on things. Yet, still he has done nothing to indicate that any such exclusion would harm democracy. Moreover, his quest for a broader political formation is proving contradictory to the nature of politics pushing the system to a deadlock. He is trying to bring together a group of very different political stances towards each other, such as the Republican People’s Party (CHP), the Motherland Party (ANAP), the Democratic Turkey Party (DTP) and New Turkey (YT), into a whole. This is nothing but creating a technocratic government or an extraordinary situation in order to catch up with the integration process with the EU and to stay on track with the economic program at the expense of what is political. The social-liberal synthesis which Dervis is putting forth is worthy of serious consideration. I think that what Turkey needs is a political line of this kind. However, leaving aside a model proposed by him in order to achieve such a line, it is impossible to call anything ‘social’ in what he has done up to now. Dervis would do better to rethink the concept of the political and the nature of politics.”

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