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Anadolu Agency: News in English, 99-12-17

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

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


[01] AA News

17 December 1999 Friday

[02] TURKEY-PRESS SCAN

These are some of the major headlines and their brief stories in Turkey's press on December 17, 1999. The Anadolu Ajansi does not verify these stories and does not vouch for their occuracy.

HURRIYET (LIBERAL)

SACRIFICING ANIMALS IN THE MIDDLE OF THE STREETS IS BANNED
Mehmet Nuri Yilmaz, Chairman of Religious Affairs Department, said ''entering to European Union (EU), doesn't prevent us from performing our religious duties. Yet, animals should not be sacrificied in the middle of the streets. The animals should not be sacrificied in front of children. This will also cause illness.

TURK: CAKICI CAN BE LISTENED AS WINTESS
Alaattin Cakici, notorious mafia boss, became a crisis between Interior Minister Saadettin Tantan, and Justice Minister Hikmet Sami Turk about interrogating him in Director General of Security. Justice Minister stepped back on Thursday, and said Cakici can be listened as a witness.

MILLIYET (LIBERAL)

DEMOCRACY IS A RIGHT FOR KURDS
Mesut Yilmaz, leader of the Motherland Party (ANAP) gave striking messages.

-The road going to European Union (EU), passes from southeastern Diyarbakir province.

-Democracy is a right for the Turks and the Kurds.

-Richness is the right of the Westerns and Easterns.

-We should not miss the opportunity created by the peace atmosphere.

-We should leave century old fears aside.

ORAL: STAND-BY IS ALL RIGHT
Sumer Oral, Minister of Finance, who participated in G-20 meeting held in Berlin, met with Micheal Camdessus, Executive Director of the International Monetary Fund (IMF). Speaking after the meeting Oral said, ''Camdessus liked our program. He said, 'it was a program that had to be done.' He created the impression on me that stand-by agreement has been signed.''

SABAH (LIBERAL) TO OUR SUPRISE THEY DID NOT HAVE SO BRAVE HEARTS
Electricity went off in Kartal Prison where notorious people like Alaatin Cakici, Erol Evcil, Adnan Hoca, Nuri Ergin from Karagumruk Gang, illegal IBDA-C members, and Satanists are kept. The convicts, who thought there is quake after remaining in absolute darkness, got panicked and began to strike the walls and doors of the wards. They shouted to go out.

CUMHURIYET (LEFT)

PRIME MINISTER ECEVIT'S AEGEAN EVALUATION
Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit pointed out that Rauf Denktas, President of Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) welcomed the determined attitude of Turkey. Ecevit said the embargo imposed on TRNC can not be pardoned. Ecevit said the solution of the problem will be more easier if the European Union (EU) does not ignore the facts on Cyprus. Prime Minister stressed that they will work very hard to solve Aegean problems throught dialogue till the year 2004.

Ecevit also said Turkey began to remove its deficiences due to human rights, and noted that it will not have any deficiencies in this respect soon.

CUSTODY TO HEZBOLLAH
Security experts of 11 Southeastern provinces will convene for the organization. A meeting will be staged in southeastern Diyarbakir province on December 20 to evaluate the situation regarding illegal Hezbollah organization. A total of 2000 members of the illegal Hezbollah organization were captured in operations in the last months. Security experts will discuss the results obtained during operations in 11 cities.

RADIKAL (LEFT)

SCHRODER BACKS TURKEY
Turkey's formal candidacy to European Union (EU) kicked up a row in German parliament. Gerhard Schroder, German Chancellor, rebuked Christian Democracts, the opposition party. He said, ''Turkey was not excluded in Helsinki Summit. The perspective that has been given to Turkey will give a shape to EU for long years. The damage that was given in Luxembourg, has been mended in Helsinki.'' Schroder hailed the determination of Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit to abolish capital punishment.

CAY: WE SHOULD SIGN CAPITAL PUNISHMENT
Abdulhaluk Mehmet Cay, Minister of State, reacted to the discussions of abolishment of capital punishment, and Kurdish TV, brought by Foreign Minister Ismail Cem. Cay said they will not put their signatures to this. Cay defended that execution of the capital punishment that has been given to Abdullah Ocalan, the head of the terrorist organization, and abolishment of capital punishment were different things.

TURKIYE (RIGHT)

U.N. ACCEPTS TRNC
The objection that was made to the document regarding extension of the mandate of U.N. Peacekeeping Forces (UNFICYP) deployed on the Island, was taken into consideration. The U.N. will sign another agreement with Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC).

WE ARE HOPEFUL FOR THE YEAR 2000
Turkey which has put a mass blow on terrorism, and overcome the shock of two massive earthquakes, welcomes millienium with excitement. The target of the coalition government, which works in harmonization, is to reduce inflation to single digit numbers. Business world extends support to the program prepared by Central Bank. Stand-by, which will be signed with the International Monetary Fund (IMF), within this month, will provide an importance source.

ZAMAN (CONSERVATIVE)

IMF DECISION TO BE ON DECEMBER 21
International Monetary Fund (IMF), said it accepted letter of intention of Turkish government regarding stand-by with the IMF, and that it has been sent to IMF Executive Board. It said final decision regarding stand-by will be given on December 21 or 22.

FINANCIAL AID CONFIRMED
European Union (EU) will give 75 million Euro loan to Turkey in the year 2000. The final 2000 year budget of EU has been approved in European Parliament on Thursday.

[03] DEMIREL RECEIVES HOMBACH, SPECIAL COORDINATOR OF SOUTHEASTERN EUROPE STABILITY PACT

ANKARA, Dec 17 (A.A) - President Suleyman Demirel received Bodo Hombach, the Special Coordinator of the Southeast Euorope Stability Pact at the Presidential Palace on Thursday.

Hombach briefed Demirel about the recent developments in the Pact. A conference will be held in March and an accelerated study programme will be followed, he said.

Turkey has a special function and importance in the region and it will play a leading role in making the Pact successful, Hombach stressed. He also noted that Turkey's EU candidacy was extremely important for the region, and added that Turkey-EU partnership would be the main pillar for the Stability Pact.

Turkish private sector's active participation in the projects is very important and Turkey could have important contributions in realizing political reforms in the countries located in this region, he went on to say. Hombach added that Turkey was the only country that could be the leader of the region's change process. They will report to Demirel about the new developments in the region, he noted.

President Demirel said the Stability Pact was an important opportunity for the Balkans. This Pact will have a determining role in integrating Southeast European region to Europe with all its aspects, Demirel stated.

''We are determined to fulfill our responsibilities for the democratization of Southeast Europe, its reconstruction and removing security related worries in the region to make the Stability Pact successful,'' Demirel said.

[04] BELGIAN VILLAGE TO BE SET UP IN DUZCE

BRUSSELS, Dec 17 (A.A) - The Turkish Embassy in Brussels started an initiative to build a Belgian village in Duzce with the 13 million Belgian Francs (about 150 billion Turkish Liras) collected by some associations in Belgium.

The village will contain 100 prefabricated huts, each measuring 28 square meters. Each hut will have a toilet, a shower, a small kitchen, an electrical heater and a water heating device.

The Belgian Foreign Minister announced that it would participate in this activity by constructing a building which could be used as a dispensary and a school.

A Belgian Firm will produce the prefabricated huts and 40 huts will be sent to Duzce on December 23 with a ceremony.

[05] TRNC FOREIGN AND DEFENSE MINISTRY SAYS SECURITY COUNCIL SHOULD ACT IN PARALLEL WITH POLITICAL REALITIES IN CYPRUS

LEFKOSA, Dec 17 (A.A) - The Foreign and Defense Ministry of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) said on Thursday that reaching a final solution on the Island was possible only if the UN Security Council adopts an attitude parallel to the political realities in Cyprus.

''A final solution can be reached if the Security Council and the international community take a step on this positive line,'' it was said.

The Ministry's statement said the U.N Security Council decided to extend the mandate of the U.N Peace Keeping Force for six months and in the Council's decision, there was no reference to the ''government of Cyprus'' which was never accepted by the Turkish side. The Turkish side earlier explained its reasons for refusing to use the term, it was noted.

The Committee for Missing People is not able to function because of the obstructions of the Greek side, it was also stated.

''Despite the negative points mentioned above, U.N Secretary General's addition to the report dated November 29, 1999 regarding the activities of the U.N Peace Keeping Force is regarded as a meaningful and positive step. For the first time it was clearly stated that activities of the U.N Peace Keeping Force in North and South Cyprus require the approval of both sides. Our views regarding this issue were included in a U.N document. For the first time it was pointed out that the activities of the U.N Peace Keeping Force must be discussed separately with the authorities from both Turkish and Greek sides ,'' the TRNC Foreign Ministry said.

[06] RED CRESCENT'S AID ARRIVES IN CHECHNYA AND DISTRIBUTED TO CIVILIANS

ANKARA, Dec 17 (A.A) - Red Crescent announced on Thursday that food and medical supplies which were sent to Chechnya were distributed to the civilians.

Red Crescent denied the news which appeared recently in some newspapers regarding the distribution of these supplies to Russian soldiers, and stressed that the civilians received these supplies which were sent by the Turkish Foreign Ministry.

''The aid supplies were given not to the armed Russian soldiers, but to civilian Moslem Chechens which suffer the agony of war. The aid was sent to Molem Chechen people who are politically citizens of the Russian Federation. Red Crescent which has to stay outside all the political and ideological considerations cannot disregard the sovereignty rights of another country and it also cannot act independently from the Turkish Foreign Ministry,'' the statement said.

[07] DENKTAS TO EU:''CONFIRM TURKEY'S RIGHTS OVER CYPRUS SO THAT WE CAN EASILY APPLY FOR EU CANDIDACY''

LEFKOSA, Dec 17 (A.A) - Rauf Denktas, the President of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus suggested on Thursday that the EU should confirm Turkey's guarantor rights over Cyprus if Turkey becomes an EU member.

If the EU does this, Denktas added that TRNC will also knock on the door of the EU for membership.

''Turkey cannot give up its rights over Cyprus and this has been stated before,'' Denktas stressed.

Turkey had guarantor rights on Cyprus also in 1960, Denktas pointed out, reminding that they did not forget what they had to live through in those times. But this time, he added, they don't want this to be only on the paper, but on the land, state, and sovereignty.

On a live phone call to a tv channel, Denktas asked the EU to know that the EU application of the Greek side did not include the Turkish Cypriots and the application which was made on behalf of the whole island was illegal and the Turkish Cypriots did not even know about it.

''Our way is open now. We look at the future with more confidence. We protected our state and sovereignty. Whereever we go, we are shown respect as people who protect their state. They understand us better. They write things that were not written so far. We are continuing our way with full cooperation with Turkey,'' Denktas said.

Denktas also announced that he would start the second tour of the proximity talks end of January.

[08] ''BANKING IN TURKEY UNDER THE LIGHT OF NEW DEVELOPMENTS'' PANEL HELD IN ISTANBUL

ISTANBUL, Dec 17 (A.A) - Ali Ihsan Karacan, the former Chairman of Capital Market Council (SPK) said that technological developments would greatly affect the structure of banking systems in the years to come, when he spoke at a panel titled ''Banking in Turkey Under the Light of New Developments'' on Thursday.

Karacan explained the expected developments in banking system while entering the 2000's.

Turkish finance system must switch from rule based inspection to risk based system, he noted and said maintaining macro economic stability was very important. The drop of inflation will bring a new understanding of banking, he also added.

The economic crisis in Asia proved that transparancy was very important in banking system and domination of public banks in this system shows that there is little transparancy, he explained.

Akin Ongor, the General Director of Garanti Bank who also spoke at the panel stressed that the year 2000 would be a transition period for Turkey. The understanding of banking will change in the years to come and customers will gain importance, he noted.

More people will start taking credits as the inflation drops and offering the right service at the right time to the customers will be essential, he said. Ongor also noted that Garanti Bank already had 110,000 internet customers.

Vural Akisik from Disbank said a social consensus was reached over the 25 percent inflation target set out by the government. ''We will have days during which the interest rates are 10 percent in the morning, 60 percent at noon and close with 0 percent at night. Turkish banking gained an expertise in these matters. We could also deal with this,'' Akisik said.

Husnu Ozyegin, the General Director of Finansbank noted that the changing conditions caused the banks follow up on their expenses rather than their income and added that there will be considerable drops in the personnel expenses of banks in the future.

Many foreign banks will come to Turkey in the years to come due to Turkey's EU candidacy and there will be a flow of foreign capital to the country, he noted.

Ozyegin said he thought the drop in the inflation and the foreign capital flow will make the stock market grow five to six times and it will reach to 300 billion U.S. dollars. ''Great amounts of money will enter the stock market with the privatization, especially privatization in energy and telecommunication fields. The liquidity of the stock market will increase, '' he said.

[09] BAKU-CEYHAN PIPELINE PROJECT - JOINT WORK GROUP OF TURKEY, AZERBAIJAN, AND GEORGIA TO BE ESTABISHED TILL THE NEW YEAR

ANKARA, Dec 17 (A.A) - Joint Work Group of Turkey, Azerbaijan, and Georgia, will be established till the new year. The Joint Work Group was decided to be established under Baku-Ceyhan pipeline agreement, which was signed during Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) summit held in Istanbul.

A statement of Energy and Natural Resources Ministry said the Joint Work Group, which includes Turkey, Azerbaijan, Georgia and officials of the consortium, has not been established yet. The Work Group has been set up to transport Azeri oil to Western markets.

Ongoing talks between Azerbaijan and Georgia regarding Baku-Ceyhan project, were given as the reason of this.

Istanbul Declaration foresaw the establishment of the Joint Work Group soon to fulfil required efforts to conclude Baku-Ceyhan oil pipeline project till the year 2004, and to provide finance contributions. Istanbul Declaration was signed by President Suleyman Demirel, Azeri President Haydar Aliyev, and Georgian President Eduard Shevardnadze.

Bill Clinton, the U.S. President, signed the Declaration in observer status.

Baku-Ceyhan project is foreseen to start on January 1, 2000 and flow of oil to Ceyhan will start in April 2004.

[10] TURKISH-EU RELATIONS PANEL DISCUSSION - FM CEM: ''A LASTING SECURITY, PEACE, AND DEVELOPMENT PERIOD STARTED BETWEEN TURKEY AND GREECE''

ISTANBUL, Dec 17 (A.A) - Foreign Minister Ismail Cem said on Friday that Costas Simitis, Greek Prime Minister, and Yorgo Papandreou, Greek Foreign Minister, made a bold choice in their own conditions with their attitudes adopted in Turkey's formal candidacy process to the European Union (EU).

Cem pointed out that, ''nobody should feel doubt that a lasting security, peace, and development period starts between Turkey and Greece with this choice.''

Addressing the opening of ''Turkish-European Union (EU) Relations After Helsinki Summit'' panel discussion staged by Economic Development Fund (IKV), Cem stressed that Greek administrators guided their community to the great future of tomorrow instead of giving priority to today's conditions.

Pointing out that they will not approach to disputes between Turkey and Greece by referring to the ''articles and principles,'' Cem said, ''I believe that we will resolve the disputes in a friendly manner which suits to two neighbours.''

Cem criticized the comments ''we won, Greece won'', and noted that, ''both communities and countries have won. The two countries have taken steps to welcome the future together. This is not easy, but the choice of Greece is extremely important. Turkey, in its long history, has never responded in a hostile manner to a country which has shown a friendly approach.''

FM Cem pointed out that ''I believe that our relations with Greece will improve day by day. Not only Greece, but also European people will see that choice of Simitis and Papandreou is right.''

[11] TURKISH-EU RELATIONS PANEL DISCUSSION - FM CEM: ''TURKEY IS NOT ANY ORDINARY CANDIDATE''

ISTANBUL, Dec 17 (A.A) - Foreign Minister Ismail Cem Friday stressed that Turkey was not any ordinary candidate for the European Union (EU). Cem said, ''Turkey has different characteristics than anybody on membership. It contributes things that nobody can.''

Pointing out that Customs Union (CU) and the harmonization efforts should not be forgotten, Cem said, ''we have four years in advance against any other candidate.''

Addressing the opening of ''Turkish-European Union (EU) Relations After Helsinki Summit'' panel discussion staged by Economic Development Fund (IKV), Cem thanked to all sections and citizens who extended efforts in process of EU candidacy.

Pointing out that EU did not make an easy choice and opened itself to a new world with this choice, Cem said, ''it did not make a choice of belief fanaticism. It took a courageous step towards multi-cultural Europe, it did not prefer interverted structure. This was not an easy choice. Turkey will support the EU in its choice.''

Cem said the EU borders were extended to the East of Turkey with this development, adding that thus views of Turkey's interlocutors began to change. He said the EU did not look at Turkey with a different understanding, and that relations with Western Europe will be perceived as a whole, not as two sides.

Cem noted that during his meetings with the representatives of Central Asian and the Middle East countries following the Helsinki resolution, they said ''Turkey will represent us in the EU from now on.'' He said, ''this new position puts Turkey to an important position due to regional security and economic development.''

Cem said Turkey was different having the most powerful and influential armed forces in a big geography at a time when Europe's military identity was discussed.

Stressing that Turkey has already been included in economic dimensions of the EU, Cem said, ''other members can not even image to integrate in the field of economy, which is the most hardest. Let us remind this to the others, but we should not forget it either.''

Cem said, ''Turkey is a country which has already provided harmonization with the EU for four years. We are not in a position to read that 110,000 pages. We have already taken steps. We should not forget Customs Union.''

FM stressed that there were many things that should be done despite all these positive developments, Cem said ways should be found to carry out efforts in a disciplined way, to prevent extravagance, and to work in a productive way in all institutions and administrations of the state.

Cem said, ''we will neither lose our characteristics, nor change our national culture by entering to the EU. We will only share the era.''

Pointing out that strengthening of Turkey in regions like Central Asia, Balkans, and Caucasia, and signing of Baku-Ceyhan project facilitated the things in the EU, Cem said Turkey got what it deserved.

Cem said two important developments were recorded in Cyprus case, adding that, ''for the first time in our Cyprus case, it is as if we have carved the sovereignty of TRNC into the resolution of the U.N. Security Council. It was confirmed for the first time. If the U.N. Peacekeeping Forces will be deployed in Northern Cyprus, it will be deployed with the consent of Turkish existence in Northern Cyprus.''

Cem said Turkey could not discuss its problems within the framework of the EU so far, yet will convey its views on Cyprus or any other problems within EU and will defend itself. Cem said issues related with the Aegean will be solved with Greece before it turns into a legal conflict.

Cem said, ''I am hopeful while entering to the year 2000. The 21st century, and its first 10 years, will be the time when Turkey's hopes come true.''

[12] JOINT PARLIAMENTARY COMMISSION TO HOLD MEETINGS IN ANKARA IN FEBRUARY

STRASBOURG, Dec 17 (A.A) - The meetings of the Joint Parliamentary Commission (JPC) which is a bridge between the Turkish Parliament and the European Parliament will be held on February 22 and 23 in Ankara.

In Strasbourg the parliamentarians who form the European flank of JPC on Friday discussed Turkey's EU candidacy and the agenda of JPC meetings in Ankara.

Ambassador Nihat Akyol, Turkey's representative in the EU, who attended the meeting explained Turkey's views regarding the developments following the Helsinki Summit.

During the meetings on February 22 and 23, the participants will discuss forming working groups who will work on strategies that need to be followed before Turkey becomes an EU member.

It was reported that some parliamentarians in the European flank of JPC demanded to hold the meetings in Southeastern Turkey.

Kursat Eser from the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) and Daniel Cohn from the Greens will attend the meetings as co-Chairmen of JPC's Turkey and European flanks.

[13] TRNC PRESIDENT DENKTAS SAYS THEY WOULD NOT GIVE UP THEIR SOVEREIGNTY RIGHTS

LEFKOSA, Dec 17 (A.A) - Rauf Denktas, the President of the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC), on Friday said they would not give up their sovereignty rights and Turkey's guarantorship, when he received Bayram Meral, the Chairman of Confederation of Turkish Labour Unions (Turk-Is).

The Cyprus issue has become a matter of honour for Turkey, and it is a matter of survival or death for Turkish Cypriots, Denktas stressed.

Denktas said they were always aware of Turkey's support, and added that they would not make an agreement with the Greek Cypriot side before their sovereignty is recognized.

Turkey will enter a political dialogue with Europe through its EU candidacy, Denktas noted. ''Turkey will do whatever is necessary to protect its rights in Cyprus,'' he added.

The TRNC leader also said that they can unite with the Greek Cypriots through the EU. The Greek Cypriots applied to the EU in order to remove Turkey's rights in Cyprus. Denktas said their political goal was not to be colonized, and added that they could make peace if their sovereignty rights are respected by the Greek cypriot side.

Denktas said Turkish Cypriots who went through difficult times always had faith in Turkey and this confidence did not weaken but on the contrary, it increased after Turkey became an EU candidate.

Good relations between Turkey and Greece were essential for peace, Denkas said and reminded that Turkish-Greek friendship was damaged by Greece in 1963. Turkey does not want land, but it will also not leave Cyrus to Greece, Denktas stated.

Bayram Meral told Denktas that they fully supported TRNC's struggle.

[14] FOREIGN MINISTER CEM RECEIVES HOMBACH, SPECIAL COORDINATOR OF SOUTHEAST EUROPEAN STABILITY PACT

ISTANBUL, Dec 17 (A.A) - Ismail Cem, the Foreign Minister said on Friday that Turkey was determined to contribute to the reconstruction of the Balkans.

Cem received Bodo Hombach, the Special Coordinator of the Southeast European Stability Pact and his delegation in Istanbul.

Prior to their meeting, Cem told reporters that Turkey would have serious contributions to the Stability Pact. ''This contribution could be in all fields, including democracy, security, and economy. Now, we will develop the job we started,'' Cem said.

The Turkish government, at this stage, is discussing issues related with the coordination of the business world and its possible contributions. He stressed that Turkey was extremely important for the Balkans.

Hombach said he would evaluate Cem's cooperation proposal. ''Both the EU and the G-8 members are happy to have found a powerful partner like Turkey in matters of democratization, economic developments, and security policies. Hombach stressed that Turkey was the most important stability factor in the region.

Hombach stated that not only Southeast Europe but the Blacksea region also needed stability and they were determined to support this process.

The first stage of the Stability Pact was completed during the OSCE meeting in Istanbul, Hombach noted and said now they were working to take concrete steps in these projects.

Hombach added that he had fruitful and constructive contacts in Turkey in the last two days.

[15] TURKEY GETTING READY FOR AGRICULTURAL MASTER PLAN

ANKARA, Dec 17 (A.A) - Husnu Yusuf Gokalp, the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Affairs said on Friday that the agricultural master plan which will cover 80 provinces will cost 501,000 U.S. dollars.

Gokalp told reporters that they started activities to boost Turkey's agricultural potential. ''Rural Development Master Plan Support Project'' which took effect on August 17, 1999 will be completed in June 2001, he said.

United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) will meet the 237, 000 U.S. dollars portion of the 501,000 U.S. dollar project. In the longterm, the project targets sustainable development in 80 provinces by considering their nature and human resource potential and infrastructure. Sivas has been chosen as the testing province for the master planning activities.

[16] FINANCE MINISTER ORAL RETURNS HOME AFTER ATTENDING G-20 MEETING IN BERLIN

ISTANBUL, Dec 17 (A.A) - Sumer Oral, the Minister of Finance who attended the G-20 ministers meeting in the German city Berlin on December 15-20 , said on Friday that Turkey's participation in this platform was a source of pride for the country.

G-20 was created to form a healthier structure in national policies. The world Bank, IMF, and the EU also join G-20's as institutions.

Finance ministers of G-20 countries, chairmen of central banks, and IMF Chairman Camdessus, and World Bank Chairman Wofenshohn attended the meetings, Oral told reporters.

Oral said Turkey being a part of both EU and G-20 has taken a very important position which brings some responsibilities. ''Turkey will have to reach a balanced financial and economic structure as soon as possible. Threse are great opportunities for Turkey. Our country will fulfill these responsibilities in the shortest time possible,'' he said.

The three year programme which is carried out to strengthen Turkey's financial structure has been met positively in both domestic and foreign circles, Oral also noted.

[17] Anadolu Ajansı


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