|Saturday, 10 April 2021|
Turkish Press Review, 99-12-24
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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
 'SUPERIOR SERVICE MEDAL' AWARDED BY DEMIRELPresident Suleyman Demirel awarded 'State Superior Service Medals' to 20 persons who have served in education and health fields during the last four years. President Demirel addressed those deserving medals and said, "We are thankful to you. The good that you did is great. As the head of the Republic of Turkey, I am very happy to express my nation's gratitude and thankfulness to you." Also the Chairman of the Executive Board of Dogan Holding Company, Aydin Dogan received his medal. In addition, Demirel gave the gratitude plate to a total of 1339 charity lovers. Also Minister of Health, Osman Durmus and the Minister of National Education, Metin Bostancioglu attended the award ceremony. /Milliyet/
 GOVERNMENT ASTONISHED IMFThree leaders of the coalition partners, Ecevit, Bahceli and Yilmaz, implementing the moves necessary before the 'stand-by`, astonished the International Monetary Fund (IMF). When the 'letter of intent` came in front of the IMF's Executive Board, Turkey had already realized arrangements on many areas; from tax to monetary and capital market, from banking system to social security. IMF's Deputy Chairman Stanley Fischer said, "Turkish authorities are implementing a powerful and balanced programme to get rid of the high inflation, lasting for 20 years. This reveals Turkey's credibility," /Hurriyet/
 2000 TO PASS DIFFICULTTurkish government signed under significant commitments. The stand-by agreement is bringing burden to whole society, from workers to employers, from farmers to consumers. Following are the pledges to the IMF: * Beginning from temporary workers, number of the public workers will be decreased. * In case of a deviation additional tax will be brought. * Increase rate in the minimum wage will be low. * Instead of the formula, that is, inflation rate plus two points, civil servants' salaries will increase at the inflation rate. /Hurriyet/
 7 BILLION DOLLARS ON THE WAYThe IMF will grant Turkey $4 billion in the scope of stand-by agreement and the World Bank will give $3 billions of loan to support the structural reforms in three years. The IMF will release the first installment of $300 million immediately. The two installments of $1.5 billion will come in the years of 2000 and 2001 while the last one will arrive in Turkey in 2002. /Hurriyet/
 WORKERS PROTESTWhile the government feels relieved by the IMF's stand-by agreement, civil servants marched to protest against government's proposed pay raise. The protests were held in a tense atmosphere in Ankara, Istanbul and Izmir. The demonstrators chanted slogans condemning the agreement; "the IMF's hand in Turkish workers' pockets." /Aksam/
 BAN FOR FOUR GENERAL DIRECTORSThe owners and directors of the four banks, Sumerbank, Egebank, Esbank, Yurtbank, which were seized by the Central Bank, were ban to travel abroad until further notice. The decision was taken yesterday by Interior Ministry on the requirement of the State Minister Recep Onal. /Hurriyet/
 ASLITURK RELEASEDGulay Asliturk who was seized in England and put into prison, was released after paying the bail of 250 thousand pounds sterling. Asliturk was not permitted to leave London. She will appear in court on Jan. 7th. Meanwhile, Turkey has applied to British authorities for her extradition. /Sabah/
 THE FIRST STEP FOR THE MINISTRY OF EARTHQUAKEThe Turkish Grand National Assembly's (TGNA) Earthquake Research Commission finished its work and the report that they prepared was announced by the Chairman of the Commission, Democratic Left Party's Izmir deputy, Atilla Mutman. In the Commission's report, it was stated that "Directorate General of Disaster Affairs, Directorate General of Civilian Defence and the Council of Earthquake Research should be converted to an undersecretariat, a chairmanship or a ministry that will be attached on the Office of the Prime Minister" in order to obtain a coordination between the institutions that contribute directly or indirectly to the disaster administration system. Atilla Mutman, who stated that the construction amnesty policy should be given up and that the Construction Law should be rearranged in such a way that it includes the basics of the planning in area usage in the earthquake areas, the responsibilities of those who make the plans and who do not obey the principles of the plan and the punishments that will be given to them. /Turkiye/
 FIRST CHRISTMAS CELEBRATIONYesterday, President Suleyman Demirel issued a statement to celebrate the Christmas of the Christian citizens of the Republic of Turkey. So, in 76 years of the republican history, for the first time, Christmas has been officially celebrated. /Hurriyet/
 YILMAZ: "WE SHOULD KEEP OUR PROMISE"The leader of the Motherland Party (ANAP), Mesut Yilmaz received the Chairman of Ankara Chamber of Industry, Zafer Caglayan and the accompanying delegation and said, "Turkey must keep the promises that it gave to the IMF. In addition, an economic program which does not include the privatization cannot be successful." /Cumhuriyet/
 SIR DAVID HANNAY: "TITLES ARE NOT IMPORTANT FOR CYPRUS"England's speacial representative to Turkey, Sir David Hannay, made a statement to a Greek-Cypriot news agency and said, "The titles such as federation or confederation are not important for Cyprus. The authorities of the two central governments and the two regions are the most important factors. The indirect negotiations that started in New York between the Greek-Cypriot Administration and the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) concerning the Cyprus issue is very "realistic" and these discussions constitute the "beginning of a serious process." Hannay stated that the first stage of the discussions was very useful and further added, "The decisions that were taken during the Helsinki Summit on 10th and 11th December are very important. After these decisions, Turkey, Greece and the Greek-Cypriot Administration began to go to the same direction." /Cumhuriyet/
 HARRAZI TO VISIT TURKEY IN THE NEW YEARIt was stated that Iran's Minister of Foreign Affairs, Kemal Harrazi, would pay an official visit to Turkey. According to the news that was issued by 'Iran News' newspaper that depended upon diplomatic sources, Harrazi will be received by President Suleyman Demirel and Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit and that he will meet the Turkish Minister of Foreign Affairs, Ismail Cem. During Harrazi's meetings with the Turkish officials, the regional and bilateral relations will come onto the agenda. It is also expected that during his contacts, Harrazi will discuss the compensation demands concerning the bombardment, which Iran claimed that was made by the Turkish planes at the border. /Cumhuriyet/
 INONU DOCUMENTARY ON CNN TURKCNN Turk is broadcasting a 'Ismet Inonu Documentary` on the 26th anniversary of his demise. The documentary doesn't reflects Ismet Inonu in the history, instead, the history as lived by Ismet Inonu. It has been prepared in 15 months, searching in record amounts of documents and choosing three thousand of photographs from 24 archives. Beginning tonight, it will be broadcast for three days. /Hurriyet/
 RECORD IN THE PAYMENT OF EXTERNAL DEBTThe amount of the external debt that had been paid by Turkey since the beginning of this year amounts to 12 billion 140.23 million dollars. According to the data of the Central Bank, 401.97 million dollars were paid to the IMF and 59.61 million dollars were paid to the Turkish Defence Fund. In addition, 410.56 million dollars were paid by the Treasury, 438.94 million dollars by the Central Bank and 829.15 millilon dollars by the Ministry of National Defence and the Defence Industry. Furthermore, during the 22 days of December the amount repaid reached 561.94 million dollars. /Turkiye/
 ASSOCIATION OF CONSUMER FINANCING WAS ESTABLISHEDDirectors of the consumer financing firms, who aim at financing the purchase of all sorts of goods and service by the consumers, established the Association of Consumer Financing Firms. The main target of the association is to strengthen the professional solidarity among the firms and to obtain the working of them in a disciplined way in accordance with the needs of the economy. This association is also aiming at securing the devotion to ethical values that will be established by the association and bringing to the fore the respect towards the rights of the consumers. /Turkiye/
 31TH DECEMBER WAS ANNOUNCED AS A FULL-DAY HOLIDAY31th December was announced as a holiday in order to take precaution against the problems that might occur in the computer systems while entering the new millenium. This decision was taken by the Turkish Grand National Assembly's Interior Affairs Commission yesterday. /Milliyet/
 FROM THE COLUMNS ... FROM THE COLUMNS ... FROM THE COLUMNS
 NORTHERN IRAQ BY SAMI KOHEN (MILLIYET)Columnist Sami Kohen comments on the formation of a new government in Northern Iraq. A summary of his column is as follows:
"The establishment of a new government in Northern Iraq may be understood as a new step by the Kurds towards political structuring. In fact, no meaning should be attached to the establishment of a government in the region under the control of Mesud Barzani's Kurdistan Democratic Party. This is the fourth government formed in the region. This is a change of government. The striking point of this government is that it is a wide based Cabinet with communists and conservatives and a pro-Barzani Turkoman institution.
Concerning the moves towards political structuring in the Barzani and Talabani regions, this is not something new although great strides have been taken on the matter in recent years. When considered within this framework, the event in Erbil can be viewed as the "renewal of Government". This Government formed by Nechirvan Barzani only represents the region under its control and does not cover the region under Talabani control. This event shows that the deep rift between Barzani and Talabani is continuing and the efforts of the US to bring them together has led nowhere. There are various factors affecting this dispute stemming from history, tribal differences and conflicts of interest. Whatever may be the reason, Kurds, despite the political structuring in Northern Iraq, remain divided.
Turkish interests lie in not disturbing stability in the region. In the past, vacuum of power and conflict in Iraq provided a convenient base for the actions of the PKK. Another important point for Turkey is that the administration established in the region should be temporary. That is, we support Iraqi territorial integrity. The status of the North will be determined through talks between Saddam and the "temporary administration" and this does not seem to be about to occur soon."
 TURKEY'S CANDIDACY TO EU BY ISMET GIRITLI (TURKIYE)Columnist Ismet Giritli comments on Turkey's candidacy to Europe. A summary of his column is as follows:
"I believe that Turkey's acceptance of the EU "candidacy status" on 10 December 1999 is a correct decision and find the protests and criticism directed to this decision unfair and groundless.
In fact, two years after the Luxembourg Summit where the candidacy of 11 countries were accepted and the doors of Europe shut in the face of Turkey, the approval of Turkey's EU candidacy unanimously on 10 December 1999 and to avoid Turkey's rejection of the offer sending of EU Chief Political Coordinator Solana to Ankara, shows the positive change in the stance towards and therefore should be regarded as a success.
The main reason behind this change stems from the fact that Turkey is in a key location between Europe and the rich energy lines in Eurasia. Therefore, we have to thank President Demirel, recent Turkish Governments who have worked hard for achieving this goal and the Foreign Minister Ismail Cem.
Western countries are not approaching Turkey with the mentality left over from the First World War, but with the belief that she holds a bridgehead in the Balkans, stability of which they attach great importance. They also consider Turkey as one of the most reliable allies in NATO.
EU Helsinki Summit had to accept some of Greek conditions, we should not panick as it would mean to cut off one's nose to spite one's face. Turkey and Greece instead of arguing on the issues of Cyprus and the Aegean should form a joint view and Turkey should make the required changes in her laws to harmonize with the Copenhagen criteria by taking the country's security and indivisibility into consideration."
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