|Friday, 23 April 2021|
Turkish Press Review, 99-11-01
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From: Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs <http://www.mfa.gov.tr>
Summary of the political and economic news in the Turkish press this morning
 FROM THE COLUMNS... FROM THE COLUMNS... FROM THE COLUMNS...
 DEMIREL: "LOYALTY TO SECULAR REPUBLIC IS A DUTY OF CITIZENSHIP"President Suleyman Demirel said loyalty to the secular Republic was a duty of citizenship for all Turkish nationals. Visiting Kars on Saturday, the President stressed that the 76-year-old Republic of Turkey only wanted its citizens to be loyal to the democratic, secular system in the country in which the supremacy of law was obeyed. /All papers/
 POLITICANS' FUNERAL IN ARMENIAArmenian Prime Minister Vasken Sarkisyan, the Speaker of the Armenian Parliament, Karen Demirciyan, and six other members of Parliament who were murdered last Wednesday in the Armenian Parliament building, were buried after a state funeral. On behalf of Turkey, State Minister Mehmet Ali Irtemcelik, TGNA Deputy Speaker Ali Iliksoy and Foreign Ministry officials attended the ceremonies. Mehmet Ali Irtemcelik expressed Turkey's condolences to the Armenian State President, Robert Kocaryan. A hundred thousand Armenians and about 250 foreign representatives were present at the funerals. /Hurriyet/
 'DON'T DISREGARD US'Following the attack on its Parliament, Armenia is in chaos. Also, economically, they are in great difficulty. In order to revive the economy, they desire the opening of the Turco-Armenian border which is still closed. The Armenian Foreign Minister, Vartan Oskanyan, said, "Open the border gates and let's improve our relations. We have no problem with Turkey," during an interview with a correspondent from the 'Turkiye' newspaper. Oskanyan also wishes to begin a new page in relations between the two countries and have the embargo abolished. /Turkiye/
 ROMANIAN INTERIOR MINISTER VISITS TURKEYRomanian Interior Minister Constantin Dudu Ionescu came to Turkey on the official invitation of Interior Minister Saadettin Tantan, the Anatolia News Agency reported on Saturday. In a statement to the press at the Kapikule border gate in Edirne, Ionescu said that he believed that several decisions concerning some very important issues would be made during his meetings in Turkey. Responding to a question pertaining to cooperation between the two countries on the issues of drugs and terrorism, Ionescu said that drugs and terrorism would constitute the top issues at his meetings. Ionescu will leave Turkey on Tuesday.
 ALIYEV IN TURKEYAzerbaijani President Haydar Aliyev arrived in Istanbul yesterday. Aliyev will be in Ankara late on Monday after a series of meetings in the earthquake-hit city of Adapazari. "Aliyev will celebrate the birthday of his close friend President Suleyman Demirel and will receive the Ataturk Award", Azeri diplomats said. The Azeri-Armenian conflict over Nagorno-Krabakh and the debate on Baku-Ceyhan, the proposed main export pipeline to carry Caspian oil to world markets, are on the agenda. Energy is the most important topic in Turco-Azeri relations. Azerbaijani Deputy Prime Minister Abit Sherifov said in Istanbul yesterday that the problems blocking Baku-Ceyhan have already been solved, and they are planning to sign the agreement on November 18 in reference to the OSCE summit to be held in Istanbul. /All papers/
 BANGLADESHI PRESIDENT VISITS TURKEYBangladeshi President Shahabuddin Ahmed has arrived in Turkey upon an earlier official invitation issued by President Suleyman Demirel, the Anatolia News Agency reports. Upon his arrival at Esenboga Airport, Ahmed was met by President Demirel, State Minister Sukru Sina Gurel and Ankara Governor Yahya Gur. Following a meeting between Demirel and Ahmed at Cankaya Palace, Turkish and Bangladeshi delegations headed by Demirel and Ahmed also met. To conclude the meetings, a series of agreements regulating bilateral relations between the two countries were signed between the two delegations. The Bangladeshi President also met Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit.
 PARLIAMENT'S AGENDA: AMNESTY AND BUDGETParliament's Planning and Budget Commission is scheduled to discuss the 2000 Budget within the week. Debates within the Commission will start with an inauguration speech to be made by Finance Minister Sumer Oral on November 3 and will continue until November 25. The Amnesty Bill, which was previously vetoed by President Suleyman Demirel, will be debated once again by Parliament's Constitutional Commission on November 2. /All papers/
 REPUBLIC CELEBRATIONS IN CHICAGOThe Turks living in Chicago in the U.S celebrated the Turkish Republic Day at an evening organized by the Turco-American Culture Association. During the evening, memories of the years of the establishment of the Republic and Ataturk's personality were mentioned. Meanwhile, the revenue which will be obtained from the Ball organized for Nov. 20th will be sent to the earthquake survivors. /Cumhuriyet/
 TURKEY ONLY COUNTRY THAT CAN RAISE EU POPULATIONThe EU is experiencing a drastic slump in population figures and it is only Turkey that can save the old continent, the Anatolia News Agency reports. According to the United Nations Population Fund's (UNFPA) report 'World Population, 1999', the EU population will drop by 7.3 million between 1999 and 2025 from 374.8 million to 367.5 million. The only country able to raise the European population is Turkey. Although the rate of Turkey's population increase has slowed down, the Turkish population is still on the rise. UNFPA increased its projection for Turkey's population from 85.8 million to 87.9 million from the country's current population of 65.5 million.
 MOBILIZATION FOR PERMANENT CONSTRUCTION IN QUAKE AREAIn addition to the 26,000 prefabricated houses that will be established in the earthquake area by the end of November, construction has begun on 60,000 permanent dwellings. Ministry of Public Works officials reported that each building will cost nearly 10 billion TL. The bid for construction is going to start in two months and actual construction will probably begin in March 2000 and be completed by March 2001. This project will cost nearly one quadrillion TL, including water, electricity and sewer systems. The money will be provided by loans from abroad. /All papers/
 APPLICATIONS TO BENEFIT FROM REPENTANCE LAW ARE ON THE RISEThe number of applicants seeking to benefit from the Repentance Law has so far been recorded as 361. Semdin Sakik and his brother Arif Sakik, both members of the PKK terrorist organization, are among the applicants, the Anatolia News Agency reports. Data obtained by the news agency shows that the number of those applying to benefit from the latest Repentance Law is on the rise.
 YAS TO CONVENE THIS MONTHThe High Military Council (YAS) will convene at the end of this month. During the meeting to be headed by Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit on November 25-26, the requirements of the Turkish Armed Forces (TSK) and staff regime issues will be discussed. The YAS actually holds two ordinary meetings in August and December every year. /Aksam/
 RELIGIOUS AFFAIRS DELEGATION IN WASHINGTONA delegation comprising the Director of the Religious Affairs, Mehmet Nuri Yilmaz, the former Director of Religious Affairs Tayyar Altikulac, officials from the Religious Affairs Foundation and religious advisers from Europe and the US have attended the Turco-US Islamic Foundation's General Council in Washington. Yilmaz and Altikulac said that they had engaged in a series of talks in the US which had been very positive. /Turkiye/
 DYP ISTANBUL CONVENTION HELDSuleyman Soylu was re-elected as the True Path Party's (DYP) Istanbul Chairman at the 7th DYP Istanbul Convention with 477 out of a total of 574 votes cast by delegates. Soylu said in his speech after the results were announced that the convention had strengthened unity and solidarity within the DYP. The new executive committee members, 79 higher convention delegates and 11 disciplinary commission members were also elected at the convention. /All papers/
 IMF DELEGATION TO VISIT TURKEYAn IMF delegation headed by IMF-Turkey Desk Chief Carlo Cotarelli is expected to arrive in Turkey on Tuesday, the Anatolia News Agency reports. The IMF delegation will hold a series of meetings with private sector representatives and economic bureaucrats to discuss a few additional arrangements concerning the stand-by agreement Turkey is expected to sign with the IMF. The IMF delegation is scheduled to remain in Turkey for 15 days.
 POYD CHAIRMAN: 2001, THE YEAR TO VIGOROUSLY PROMOTE TURKEYTurgen Sevki Bulut, Chairman of the Association of Professional Hotel Managers (POYD), said that 2001 should be the year to target Turkey's promotion. Bulut admitted that the improvement of relations with Israel and Greece will be a positive factor for Turkish tourism and stressed that this opportunity should be capitalized on, the Anatolia News Agency reports. He stressed the importance of promoting Turkey in those countries from which large numbers of tourists traditionally come and mentioned the upcoming tourism fairs that are planned to be held. Bulut described the tourism sector as the dynamo industry of Turkey and said that all state institutions must contribute to the drive to attract more tourists. In the meantime, the State Institute of Statistics (DIE) reported that Germany is the country from which the highest number of tourists to Turkey come in the January-September 1999 period. /All papers/
 FIRST TENDER TOMORROWThe Treasury will launch its first debt tender tomorrow. The Teasury will export two-year bonds and targets to obtain between 600-700 trillion TL from this tender. Since, in November, the Treasury has to pay off domestic debt amounting to 2.6 quadrillion TL, it will become indebted to the tune of about 2 quadrillion TL from the markets during this month. /Cumhuriyet/
 UND IN CATALCAThe International Transporters' Association (UND) will implement its 'UND Base Project' in the near future. According to information received from UND officials, the project for the base to be established on a 120,000 square-metre area in Catalca is expected to cost 1 trillion TL. /Aksam/
 EXPORTS OF SPARE PARTSThe highest increase in exports during the first eight months of 1999 in Turkey was in road vehicles and their spare parts at a rate of 66.3 %. According to State Institute of Statistics (DIE) data, exports of mineral fuel and mineral oils was 58.9 %. The highest increase in imports during the same period was in rail vehicle and parts, at a rate of 133.5 %. /Aksam/
 CB TO PUT 10 MILLION TL NOTES INTO CIRCULATIONThe Turkish Central Bank is putting 10 million TL banknotes into circulation starting on November 5. At the same time the bank will take 50,000 banknotes out of circulation, the Anatolia News Agency reports. 50,000 TL notes were first put into circulation on May 15, 1989.
 TOFAS BECOMING RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT (AR-GE) CENTRETofas is becoming the 4th research and development centre for Fiat which already has such facilities in Italy and Brazil. Tofas, which has spent 12 million dollars up to now on its AR-GE centre, will also take on the responsiblity of developing models produced by Fiat. It was decided that Tofas AR-GE, which was built in order to adapt Fiat vehicles to conditions in Turkey, would be made the production development centre due to its successful work. /Sabah/
 THE WORLD TASTES TURKISHThe taste for products of Turkish origin is becoming widespread around the world. The Inalbars family, who have been icecream makers for 155 years, are preparing to open shops selling Edo icecream in Israel, Egypt and Japan; the family already has 18 such branches in Turkey. Edo's target for the year 2000 is to open 4 branches abroad. The Inalbars family will also lay the foundations of a new factory and open an "icecream museum" for the first time in Turkey.
State Monopolies (Tekel) will ensure that raki becomes popular in the U.S.A. and Australia, and will introduce it there soon. Experienced firms, which have completed their training in the sales, marketing and promotion of all alcoholic drinks in states and regions in America and Australia, will be given the franchising opportunity. It was stated that the Tekel will take suggestions on board up until 12th December and that, bearing these suggestions in mind, different persons and institutions will be given the franchise for the same product types. /Sabah/
 TOUR OF FRIENDSHIPThe 'Friendship and Brotherhood Cycling Tour' was held in Izmir. The Tour was organized by Konak Municipality in order to help the improvement in Turco-Greek relations. The attendents expressed their desire that the Mediterranean Sea would become a 'sea of friendship'. /Cumhuriyet/
 'PROPAGANDA' RECEIVES AWARD IN CHINAThe Turkish film 'Propaganda', directed by Sinan Cetin, came first in the Fourth International Shanghai Film Festival. During the ceremony yesterday, the award was presented to the Turkish Consul-General in Shanghai, Akif Ayhan. Metin Akpinar and Kemal Sunal were the leading actors in the film. /Turkiye/
 AWARD FOR LIVANELIThis year, the award for the 'International Composer` given in the San Remo province of Italy for the past 25 years, was presented to Zulfu Livaneli. The award which is in memory of Luici Tenco, a musician who died in 1967, in order to choose the best composer of the year, was given to Zulfu Livanelli on Oct. 22nd at a ceremony held in the Ariston Theatre in San Remo. During the ceremony night, a concert was staged composed of Livaneli's works. /Hurriyet/
 FROM THE COLUMNS... FROM THE COLUMNS... FROM THE COLUMNS...
 ANKARA-MOSCOW COMMUNIQUE ON TERRORISM - BY FIKRET BILA (MILLIYET)Columnist Fikret Bila writes on Prime Minister Ecevit's impending visit to Moscow. A summary of his column is as follows:
"Preparations concerning Prime Minister Ecevit's visit to Moscow have been completed. Two major topics will be discussed during this visit: terrorist activities and the supplementary protocol for the Blue Stream venture.
It is expected that the joint communique to be issued at the end of Prime Minister Ecevit's visit will be dedicated to cooperation the fight against terrorism.
Ecevit will go to Moscow with documentation covering the PKK's activities in Russia. Documents showing the settlements of the PKK and the installations it uses, and explaining its activities will be contained in the dossier. The Prime Minister will request that Russia ban the activities of the PKK. Russia is expected to bring the Chechnian question to the table under the umbrella of terrorist activities and ask for Turkey's support over Chechnya. She will also request Turkey not to be used by the Chechens, and to extradite terrorists when caught.
In the joint communique, both countries will stress their cooperation against terrorism without mentioning the PKK or Chechnia. The following points are expected to be covered by the 'joint communique': 1) Terrorists will not be sheltered by either country. 2) Strict control over entrance to and exit from each country will be in place. 3) Solidarity between the security organizations of both countries in the arrest of terrorists and the exchange of information on the subject will be provided.4) Captured terrorists will be extradited.
The second important issue to be discussed during the visit concerns the supplementary protocol for the Blue Stream venture. The request for such a protocol comes from Russia. Italy also has a request to make as she had signed an agreement with Russia on the issue; Italy wants Turkey to participate in the agreement and establish a certain guarantee if Russia faces any financial problem.
As Russia is one of the parties involved in the Blue Stream Plan, Turkey talks to Russia on the issue. The subjects Russia wants to be covered by the supplementary protocol are in general financial, such as the prevention of double taxation and easing any tax problems connected to the protocol.
Ankara believes that the reactions of Turkmenistan and Azerbaijan are not reasonable, noting that Turkey needs the natural gas which will be provided by `Blue Stream', whereas gas from Turkmenistan will reach Turkish territory in 2002 at the earliest."
 ADDRESS OF THE SUSPECT - BY SUKRU ELEKDAG (MILLIYET)Former Ambassador Sukru Elekdag comments on the recent developments in the Caucasus. A summary of his column is as follows:
"Two important developments can be seen when looking at the Caucasus and Caspian region from a geopolitical perspective.
The first of them is a dramatic change in the political, economic and military power balances in the Southern Caucasus which have not developed in favour of Russia. The second is that the Southern Caucasus is beginning the process of becoming a power centre together with Turkey.
The view stated in the `Financial Times' newspaper on 29/10/1999 that, "The White House is trying to promote Turkey in the place of Russia in the Caucasus", supports this to an extent. It is not altogether true, as the US does not have any intention of erasing the influence of Russia in the Caucasus and assures Moscow that she is ready to give her cooperation in providing the conditions necessary for peace and stability. However, Russia is not ready to share the privileges she has had over this region which she sees as being of huge strategic importance. She still sees the Caucasus as Russian territory. Therefore, she believes that it is only fair to continue to exert her influence over the region.
There is unequivocal evidence that Moscow is creating instability and chaos by planning assasinations and fanning ethnic disputes. She pits one group against the other and then comes forward as a mediator. Both Georgia and Azerbaijan believe that Russia has been behind the uprisings in Abkhazia and Osetia and provoked the war between Armenia and Azerbaijan. Both countries had announced that they would withdraw from the Collective Security Agreement under the umbrella of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS).
These are not the only developments which have led to Russia's loss of influence in the region. There are four more important developments. The first of them is the new American strategy towards the Caucasus and Central Asia. This strategy foresees the prevention of the blockage of energy routes leading from Central Asia to the US. Another important development is the organization formed by Georgia, the Ukraine, Uzbekistan, Azerbaijan and Moldova. These countries are trying to solve their problems in the area of trade, energy and communications among themselves and are trying to apply to NATO for membership.
One such development is the TRACECA venture (Transport Corridor for Europe, the Caucasus and Asia). This project is expected to serve to increase trade and economic relations between the Caucasus, Caspian countries and Europe. Finally, Caspian oil will be transported to Western markets not through Russia but via the Baku-Ceyhan pipeline."
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