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Turkish Press Review, 05-09-30
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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> e-mail : firstname.lastname@example.org <caption> <_caption> Summary of the political and economic news in the Turkish press this morning
30.09.2005FROM THE COLUMNS...FROM THE COLUMNS... FROM THE COLUMNS...
 ERDOGAN: “ANYTHING BESIDES FULL EU MEMBERSHIP IS UNACCEPTABLE”Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, in the United Arab Emirates for an official visit, yesterday completed his contacts and flew back to Ankara. Speaking after his return, Erdogan said that Turkey would not accept any additional or different conditions to begin accession talks, adding that Ankara would reject any alternative to full membership. Speaking to reporters, Erdogan said that the negotiations over the impending talks were continuing and that Turkey would not accept anything except full EU membership. The premier stated that a “privileged partnership” option was out of the question, adding that Turkey, on the eve of beginning its accession talks on Monday, wanted only full membership in the end. /Sabah/
 GUL: “WE WON’T GO TO LUXEMBOURG BEFORE THE NEGOTIATION FRAMEWORK DOCUMENT IS CLEAR”Speaking at a press conference at the Foreign Ministry yesterday, Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul called the current situation about Turkey’s European Union talks, scheduled to begin next Monday, “very serious,” adding that he would not travel to Luxembourg before the negotiation framework document becomes clear. Gul stated that it was normal that such an important document be ratified by the foreign ministers of the EU states. “We are faced with serious problems in beginning our EU talks,” he said. “Other EU members also faced similar difficulties while joining the Union.” He declined to give further details, adding that everyone was doing their best and that there was intense diplomatic traffic. “We’re continuing our work carefully and diligently and we’ll see the outcome,” he added. /Milliyet/
 TALAT: “AN INTERESTING AND COMPLEX PERIOD WILL BEGIN WITH TURKEY’S ACCESSION TALKS”Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) President Mehmet Ali Talat said yesterday that Turkey’s accession talks would usher in an interesting and complex period. Talat stated that Turkey would not recognize Greek Cyprus, but in the future it could open its ports to Greek Cypriot ships. /Cumhuriyet/
 GREECE VOICES SUPPORT FOR TURKEY’S FULL EU MEMBERSHIPGreek Foreign Ministry spokesman George Koumoutsakos said yesterday that Athens supported Turkey’s full membership to the European Union, adding, however, that this support depended on Ankara fulfilling the Copenhagen criteria. Koumoutsakos said that the EU member states had yet to agree on Ankara’s negotiation framework document, adding that the document aimed at Turkey’s harmonization with the Union. /Turkiye/
 BLAIR: “TURKEY IS A HONOR FOR THE EU”In an interview in Hurriyet published Friday, Britain’s Prime Minister Tony Blair reiterated his support for Turkey’s European Union membership bid. “We have to begin the negotiations for Turkey’s accession” he told the newspaper. “Afterwards there will be a lot of ups and downs, which is inevitable in such a process. The accession of a large, important country like Turkey to the European Union is an important issue. But there is determination, and moreover Turkey is an honor for the EU. For two reasons, I am personally in favor of Turkey’s membership in the EU. First, Europe will benefit, not retreating into itself. Economic and political integration will make the world a better place. Second, Turkey is a country which can be a bridge between Europe and Arab countries.” /Hurriyet/
 FRENCH PREMIER: “TURKEY’S ACCESSION PROCESS MUST BE UNDER SUPERVISION”French Prime Minister Dominique Villepin yesterday stated that France clearly wants Turkey’s European Union membership process to be under supervision. De Villepin also stressed that Turkey’s membership will be put to a referendum in France, and added that after the accession talks begin next Monday, Oct. 3, they want to see a process that can be clearly monitored, under supervision, highlighting all requests at each level.
 ITALIAN FOREIGN MINISTER: “ANKARA’S EU TALKS SHOULD START ON OCT. 3”Italian Foreign Minister Gianfranco Fini yesterday stated that that Rome will insist that the European Union’s accession talks with Turkey start on next Monday, Oct. 3, as scheduled. In an interview with Italian Daily Corrierra della Sera, Fini stressed, “Turkey has fulfilled all of the conditions set out for membership,” adding that now it was the European countries’ turn to keep their pledges.
 TIMES OF LONDON: “TURKEY DESERVES FULL EU MEMBERSHIP TALKS”Yesterday’s Times of London devoted its lead editorial to Turkey’s European Union membership bid. In the editorial entitled “Eastern Promise: There must be no alternative to talks on full Turkish EU membership,” the paper argued the following: “The European politicians are now talking of ‘privileged partnership’ as a substitute for full EU membership. The phrase may sound emollient, but it signifies a dishonorable reneging on past promises and a humiliating rejection of Turkish aspirations for the past 42 years. What politicians in Strasbourg, Paris and Berlin are hoping is that a piqued Turkey will itself flounce out of the talks. For what they fear has, at heart, little to do with agricultural costs, Turkey’s human rights record or the tortuous Cyprus negotiations. It is, more crudely, the atavistic clash of civilizations — the contention that a Europe based on Christian values and culture has no place in its midst for a Muslim nation.” /Cumhuriyet/
 AUSTRIAN SOCIALIST MEP: “AUSTRIA CAN’T FORGET THE OTTOMANS”Speaking on the European Parliament’s recent decisions on Turkey, Australian Social Democrat MEP Johannes Swoboda said that Austria’s rough and uncompromising attitude was related to history. It can’t forget the Siege of Vienna, he said. Moreover, Austrians are afraid of Turks coming, and being in schools, as they were always told that this was something bad, he added. He also stated that their stance was not based on reasoning about current events. /Aksam/
 FROM THE COLUMNS...FROM THE COLUMNS... FROM THE COLUMNS...
 NOW, AUSTRIA... BY OKTAY EKSI (HURRIYET)Columnist Oktay Eksi comments on the relations between Turkey and the European Union. A summary of his column is as follows:
“The European Union started to raise Turks’ hackles with its improper impositions. We’ve entered the final battle of this war of nerves. Do you remember Austria? When a terrorist named Ilich Ramirez Sanchez (a.k.a. Carlos the Jackal) raided an OPEC meeting in Vienna in 1975 and took 11 ministers hostage, this country bargained with him and accepted all of his conditions. Now, the same Austria now treats Turkey like a swashbuckler. It argues that Turkey doesn’t meet the necessary criteria to become an EU member and it can be only given privileged membership. However, that issue is done with, and this was made certain when the EU decided that Turkey had fulfilled the Copenhagen criteria, the prerequisites of EU membership, last Dec. 17. Austria signed this decision as well. What’s more, Austria was present during the EU summit which decided to not stipulate new conditions on Turkey and not subject it to treatment different from the process other candidates faced, so long as it meets the Copenhagen criteria.
Now, why do Austria, some other EU members and the European Parliament say that membership talks would be affected if we refuse to recognize the Greek Cypriot administration? The issues were explicitly de-linked in a December 1999 letter sent by then EU Term President Finland’s president to then Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit, right?
Actually, one can’t explain our relationship with the EU. Turkey had the right of veto granted by the London-Zurich agreements of 1960. Under these, the Greek Cypriot administration’s joining an institutional organization of which Turkey, Greece and Britain (or all of them) aren’t members was dependent on the approval of these countries, for example, Turkey’s approval. But the EU started membership talks with Cyprus during the era of Tansu Ciller’s prime ministry and we buried our right of veto into the sand. Now, however the Greek Cypriots are threatening to exercise their veto on our relations with the EU whenever they want, and we’re putting up with this. What’s more, they say that if Greek Cypriots want to join NATO, we shouldn’t use our right of veto. In other words, our being vetoed isn’t enough for them and they also want us to be a slave. Wouldn’t it be good if the noble conscience of those governing Austria required them to deal with these unfair situations?”
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