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Turkish Press Review, 03-01-03

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

03.01.2003

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

CONTENTS

  • [01] TURKEY, US AND ISRAEL CONDUCT JOINT MANEUVERS IN THE MEDITERRANEAN
  • [02] GUL’S MIDEAST TOUR HOPES TO HEAD OFF IRAQ WAR
  • [03] GUL TO DISCUSS WAR PREPARATIONS WITH BORDER REGION GOVERNORS
  • [04] DENKTAS: “TO AVOID REGRETTABLE ERRORS, THE TRNC MUST SET THE PARAMETERS FOR PEACE”
  • [05] SIMITIS: “TURKEY’S EU MEMBERSHIP BID AND CYPRUS ARE RELATED MATTERS”
  • [06] DEPUTY PRIME MINISTER SENER RECEIVES GERMAN AMBASSADOR
  • [07] CABINET HOLDS FIRST MEETING OF THE NEW YEAR, DISCUSSES POWER GRID THEFT
  • [08] IKDP LEADER BARZANI TO VISIT ANKARA
  • [09] US AMBASSADOR PEARSON PLEDGES TO PROMOTE TURKEY’S ECONOMY
  • [10] JAPANESE OFFICIAL KAMEI: “TURKEY SHOULD BE AN ECONOMIC BASE, NOT A MILITARY ONE”
  • [11] FROM THE COLUMNS… FROM THE COLUMNS… FROM THE COLUMNS…
  • [12] THE OPPOSITION IN THE NEW YEAR BY DERYA SAZAK (MILLIYET)
  • [13] HEADING OFF A POSSIBLE WAR IN IRAQ BY YILMAZ OZTUNA (TURKIYE)

  • [01] TURKEY, US AND ISRAEL CONDUCT JOINT MANEUVERS IN THE MEDITERRANEAN

    Ahead of a possible US war against Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein, the Turkish, Israeli, and US armed forces yesterday conducted joint military maneuvers in the Mediterranean in an exercise known as “Reliable Mermaid 5.” The maneuvers, intended to bolster the search-and-rescue and humanitarian aid capabilities of the three nation’s forces, were regular exercises scheduled long before the current heightened tensions in the region, military officials said. Turkey participated in the maneuvers with a helicopter, two frigates and a submarine attack team. /Star/

    [02] GUL’S MIDEAST TOUR HOPES TO HEAD OFF IRAQ WAR

    Prime Minister Abdullah Gul will begin a tour of Middle Eastern countries tomorrow as part of a final concerted attempt to head off a war in Iraq. His first stop will be Damascus, Syria, after which he will proceed to Jordan, Saudi Arabia and Egypt. During his contacts, Gul will lay out Turkey’s Middle Eastern and Iraqi policies. Meanwhile, Gul reportedly made a phone call to United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan yesterday. In the leadup to his Middle Eastern tour, the prime minister exchanged views with Annan on the Iraq issue. In addition, Gul expressed Turkey’s views on the Cyprus issue. /Turkiye/

    [03] GUL TO DISCUSS WAR PREPARATIONS WITH BORDER REGION GOVERNORS

    Prime Minister Abdullah Gul is to hold a summit today at his office to discuss recent developments on the Iraq issue with seven governors of provinces located along Turkey’s southeastern borders. Gul and the governors are expected to discuss precautions to take for the prospect of war, including measures to hold back a possible flood of refugees fleeing from Iraq to Turkish territory. High-level military officials will also participate in discussions to offer the views of the Turkish Armed Forces (TSK) on the issues. /Star/

    [04] DENKTAS: “TO AVOID REGRETTABLE ERRORS, THE TRNC MUST SET THE PARAMETERS FOR PEACE”

    The future of Cyprus is a matter for the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC), and the TRNC’s wishes must be paramount in setting the island’s course, said TRNC President Rauf Denktas yesterday. Denktas’s defense of the TRNC’s position, given in a meeting of the leaders of parties represented in Northern Cyprus’ Parliament, came as Turkish and Greek Cyprus are preparing to resume negotiations next Tuesday. “Our nation won’t forsake its sovereignty,” said Denktas. “We must make clear what kind of peace we want, or else risk our nation and the world falling into regrettable errors.” The party leaders are expected to issue a response to Denktas’s views later today. In related news, TRNC Prime Minister Dervis Eroglu said that the TRNC Parliament had decided to continue negotiating on the basis of United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan’s Cyprus plan. /Milliyet/

    [05] SIMITIS: “TURKEY’S EU MEMBERSHIP BID AND CYPRUS ARE RELATED MATTERS”

    Turkey’s European Union membership bid and the issue of Cyprus are related matters, said Greek Prime Minister Costas Simitis yesterday. “To move forward in its EU membership bid, Turkey must first resolve the island’s problems,” stated Simitis, whose country just assumed the rotating EU presidency. “There’s still enough time to work through the problems. The Turkish Cypriots’ willingness to continue negotiations is quite positive.” The Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) and Greek Cyprus are set to resume negotiations next week to meet a Feb. 28 deadline for a settlement on the island, designed to prevent the southern half of Cyprus from joining the Union alone. Simitis also expressed optimism that continental shelf disagreements between Turkey and Greece could be solved. “Our countries have agreed on a method to go forward, and work is continuing,” he stated. /Hurriyet/

    [06] DEPUTY PRIME MINISTER SENER RECEIVES GERMAN AMBASSADOR

    Deputy Prime Minister Abdullatif Sener yesterday received German Ambassador in Ankara Rudolph Schmidt in a meeting which was closed to the press. The two officials reportedly discussed major issues at the top of the international agenda. /Star/

    [07] CABINET HOLDS FIRST MEETING OF THE NEW YEAR, DISCUSSES POWER GRID THEFT

    The Cabinet yesterday held its first meeting of 2003. During the gathering, Energy and Natural Resources Minister Hilmi Guler briefed the participants on energy sector issues, in particular the problem of power grid theft and how to combat it. Speaking after the meeting, State Minister for the Economy Abdullatif Sener said that Turkey suffered more losses from this illegal practice than many other countries. “Prime Minister Abdullah Gul has issued directives to energy officials on how to stop this theft,” Sener added. /Milliyet/

    [08] IKDP LEADER BARZANI TO VISIT ANKARA

    Massoud Barzani, the leader of the Iraqi Kurdistan Democratic Party (IKDP), is set to visit Ankara this weekend. Barzani is expected to meet with Foreign Ministry and General Staff officials, as well as Prime Minister Abdullah Gul, if the latter’s schedule allows. Barzani had planned to visit Ankara last week, but the trip was postponed due to health problems. /Turkiye/

    [09] US AMBASSADOR PEARSON PLEDGES TO PROMOTE TURKEY’S ECONOMY

    Robert Pearson, the United States’ ambassador to Turkey, yesterday visited Turkish Union of Chambers and Commodities Exchange (TOBB) Chairman Rifat Hisarciklioglu. Following the meeting, Pearson told reporters that Turkish- US trade relations had been discussed. Stressing that trade volume between the two countries was quite low, Pearson stated that he would write letters to US textile companies urging them to work with Turkish firms. Explaining that the US government had prepared an economic package to support Turkey’s economy, the US ambassador added, “The package’s first aim is to ensure the trust of world markets in Turkey, and the second is to convince them that Turkish economy can weather any crisis.” /Turkiye/

    [10] JAPANESE OFFICIAL KAMEI: “TURKEY SHOULD BE AN ECONOMIC BASE, NOT A MILITARY ONE”

    Hisaoki Kamei, secretary of the Japanese-Turkish Parliamentary Friendship group and leading member of Japan’s ruling Liberal Democrat Party, yesterday spoke on the development of Turkish-Japanese relations and Turkey’s growing prominence on the international stage. “Turkey is an important economic base for Japanese businessmen both for its geopolitical conditions and its connections to the European market,” said Kamei. “The Japanese government wants to improve its relations with Turkey. We want to introduce ourselves to the members of the recently elected ruling Justice and Development Party [AKP]. I believe that Turkey should be an economic base for the Middle East rather than a military one. Your country offers many opportunities to foreign investors, but your government should launch more initiatives to promote these opportunities as well as Turkey’s rich cultural and social assets.” Kamei added that the Japanese government supported Turkey’s EU membership bid, underlining that Turkey’s admittance would benefit both the European and Japanese markets. /Cumhuriyet/

    [11] FROM THE COLUMNS… FROM THE COLUMNS… FROM THE COLUMNS…

    [12] THE OPPOSITION IN THE NEW YEAR BY DERYA SAZAK (MILLIYET)

    Columnist Derya Sazak comments on the role of the opposition Republican People’s Party. A summary of his column is as follows:

    “The Republican People’s Party (CHP) entered the Nov. 3 elections as the ‘candidate of power,’ and it competed with the Justice and Development Party (AKP). It ended up the sole opposition party in Parliament. However, just two months after the elections, people see the CHP as stumbling, just like the AKP. First of all, the CHP should draw a new road map for itself. It should ask itself whether it is a party of the left and if the answer is yes, it should decide what sort of leftist party it will be. Normally a social democratic party would have won the elections and healed the nation’s wounds after the social explosions of the 2000-2001 economic crisis. If the CHP had successfully made the case that it would help the poor, it would have been able to capture the 35% of votes which the AKP ultimately attracted. In recent years, CHP leader Deniz Baykal has tried to soften his style so as to throw off his image in some quarters as being harsh. He abandoned some of the more extreme platforms popular in the 1970s- era CHP. He tried to expand the CHP beyond its traditional base on the left. While all this was happening, the AKP was founded. The new party came to fill the void left by the CHP and became a symbol of hope for the newly impoverished masses in the wake of our recent crises. All the surveys done ahead of the Nov. 3 elections showed that people planning to vote for the CHP were dominated by the well-off and those fearful or suspicious of the AKP. Even those who had never voted for the CHP before supported the left, in spite of Deniz Baykal, to prevent AKP leader Recep Tayyip Erdogan from coming to power. When the CHP lost the elections, Baykal tried to soothe people’s fears by saying, ‘Don’t mind that the AKP is in power now, because actually the CHP is governing Turkey.’ But since then, the CHP hasn’t taken an active role in Parliament, except for criticizing the AKP’s stance concerning immunity for deputies. The CHP is acting as if it’s an opposition wing within the AKP, rather than presenting true alternative options for Turkey’s domestic and foreign problems. Isn’t it odd that Baykal seems preoccupied by the question of Erdogan’s political ban, when there are so many important problems besides this? The CHP has also become the champion of the 1982 Constitution. The CHP’s reluctance to produce viable policy alternatives and to truly change is so great that it lacked even the nerve to convene a council to evaluate November’s election results. This year, the party must work harder than it has so far.”

    [13] HEADING OFF A POSSIBLE WAR IN IRAQ BY YILMAZ OZTUNA (TURKIYE)

    Columnist Yilmaz Oztuna writes about a possible war in Iraq and international opposition to US plans for one. A summary of his column is as follows:

    “The extensive, months-long US military buildup for war in Iraq constitutes a valuable opportunity for historians to witness how the groundwork is laid for modern wars. Parallel with this portentous military buildup, there’s been no letup in US diplomatic maneuvers and propaganda. As we enter a new year, the prospect of the US getting what it wants in Iraq without resorting to military means is growing more probable. On the UN Security Council now sit the two most powerful countries clearly opposed to war in Iraq, namely France and Germany, the first as a permanent member and the second as a rotating one, and they will hold the council’s chair for the next two months. Syria and Pakistan will no doubt vote against a prospective military campaign. Thus, it would be very difficult or even impossible for the US to get a resolution confirming its designs on Iraq. Moreover, neither Russia nor China is expected to support the US. That is, none of the above countries would approve of the US seizing control of the oil resources in the Caspian and Persian Gulf regions.

    So there is no choice left for the US other than unilaterally invading Iraq at all costs, even if doing so means acting against the Security Council. Yet, the US is fully capable of doing that, and there’s no force that could hold it back. But if that happens, anti-American sentiment will explode worldwide, and Washington will face an exacerbated set of foreign policy problems.

    The US will firstly launch the most destructive air strike ever on Iraq to preempt further US casualties in a land operation, and then send its tanks into Baghdad. Tens of thousands of Iraqis will die, and millions will be injured. The US will never abandon its designs on Iraq and the Middle East, but there are signs that it may carry out its plans without resorting to war, as President Bush’s New Year address hinted at. But again, it all hinges on the stance of Saddam Hussein. He will make his choice. If he steps down, there will be no need for war. It’s as simple as that.”

    <script type="text/javascript" language="JavaScript" src="http:/_www.byegm.gov.tr_statistic/countcode.js"> </script>


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