|Thursday, 20 June 2013|
Turkish Press Review, 02-05-10
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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> <map name="FPMap1"> <_map> Press & Information Turkish Press Summary of the political and economic news in the Turkish press this morning
 SEZER, ECEVIT AND CEM MARK EUROPEAN DAYImportant messages came from the top of Turkey’s government concerning the nation’s target of EU membership on May 9 European Day. During a dinner for ambassadors in Ankara, President Ahmet Necdet Sezer emphasized Turkey’s determination to completely fulfill the Copenhagen criteria and requested a timetable from the EU by the end of the year to start membership negotiations. “The EU’s determining a date to start negotiations will accelerate the reforms that we are continuing with determination,” Sezer said. “Obviously the process of negotiation will serve as an encouraging factor in terms of the steps being taken by Turkey. The European nations’ structure, which is based on democracy, human rights, the rule of law and prosperity, will gain much from the entry of Turkey into the Union.” Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit celebrated Europe Day with a written announcement issued from his home, where he is recovering from a recent illness. Remarking that Turkey was taking further steps to deserve full EU membership, Ecevit stated, “It is our debt to ourselves to eliminate our shortcomings.” Remarking that the Turkish nation had been European for many centuries, Ecevit added, “It is not only European, but also Eurasian, Middle Eastern, Caucasian, and Mediterranean and from the Black Sea. The Turkish nation is also making great contributions to the concept of ‘being European’ with our richness deriving from geography and history.” In addition, speaking to news channel NTV, Foreign Minister Ismail Cem said that the death penalty should be abolished in Turkey and that no “half measures” on the issue would be sufficient. /Cumhuriyet/
 EU OFFICIALS URGE TURKEY ON REFORM FOR EUROPEAN DAYMay 9 European Day was celebrated in Turkey yesterday by domestic political figures along with EU country ambassadors and politicians as well as scholars at various panels and conferences. The EU ambassadors stressed that Turkey should as soon as possible complete reforms for its membership bid. European Commission Turkey Representative Karen Fogg spoke at a conference held at Ankara’s European Communities Research and Development Center, saying that Turkish people should feel themselves as European and that Turkey’s future lies in Europe. Spanish Ambassador to Turkey Manuel de la Camara told a panel held at Motherland Party (ANAP) headquarters in Ankara that Turkey should implement reforms for its EU accession. /Cumhuriyet/
 CEM: “THE BALL IS IN THE EU’S COURT NOW”Speaking at a symposium yesterday, Foreign Minister Ismail Cem stated that Turkey has done what the European Union had asked it to do for full membership. “The EU told us to adopt the Copenhagen Criteria and we have done so, now the ball is in their court,” Cem remarked at a symposium organized by the Istanbul Chamber of Industry (ISO) to mark May 9, Europe Day. Cem also said that the EU constituted a plan and design which would determine the future of Turkey and all of Europe. “It is Ankara’s goal to become a leader country between Europe and Central Asia by means of its EU membership,” Cem added. /Cumhuriyet/
 YILMAZ: “TURKEY MUST WAKE UP FOT ITS EU ACCESSION”Deputy Prime Minister and Motherland Party (ANAP) leader Mesut Yilmaz declared yesterday that EU accession was a national policy which Turkey could not possibly abandon. Speaking at a panel held at his party’s headquarters to mark May 9 European Day, Yilmaz stated that certain domestic circles were still stubbornly resisting integration with the EU. “If we can’t integrate with the EU in the near future, not only our future, but also our children’s will be lost. It is time to wake up,” Yilmaz said. He also called upon the EU to give up its policy of making Turkey “wait at the door,” resisting its membership bid. /Turkiye/
 ECEVIT, CILLER DENOUNCE REPORTERS WITHOUT BORDERS MAPRegarding a recent map posted by private group Reporters Without Borders in a Paris Metro station, Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit said yesterday that the French government should “cleanse its country from that shame as soon as possible.” A statement issued by the Office of the Prime Ministry said that the inclusion of Turkey and Chief of General Gen. Staff Huseyin Kivrikoglu’s photo on a map showing countries where freedom of the press is suppressed, with photos of the leaders allegedly responsible for this supposed lack of freedom, constituted “ugly and disrespectful behavior” towards Turkey. Meanwhile, True Path Party (DYP) leader Tansu Ciller also condemned the map, saying that it was an insult to Turkey and to its honorable chief of General Staff. She called upon the government to not waste any time in making necessary initiatives to the French government to address the matter. /Turkiye/
 DENKTAS INVITES ECEVIT TO TRNCPrime Minister Bulent Ecevit, who was treated in the hospital last weekend for an intestinal infection, will reportedly soon travel to the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) in order to rest and relax. TRNC President Rauf Denktas reportedly called Ecevit before he left the hospital and gave him get-well wishes and invited him to Northern Cyprus to rest. Although there is not yet any official announcement concerning such a journey, the Turkish Embassy in the TRNC has started preparations for Ecevit’s possible visit. Ecevit stayed at home yesterday and is expected to rest until Monday. However, Ecevit said yesterday that he wanted to meet with Denktas, who arrived in Ankara yesterday for a visit. Ecevit also doesn’t want to postpone his trip to Pakistan and Afghanistan currently scheduled for May 23-25. /Hurriyet/
 IZGI PAYS ECEVIT GET-WELL VISITParliament Speaker Omer Izgi yesterday visited Prime Minister Bulent Ecevit at his home. When leaving Ecevit’s house, Izgi told reporters that he had given get-well wishes to the PM. Izgi said, “Ecevit is quite well and there is no need to spin new scenarios.” /Sabah/
 EP PRESIDENT: “A UNITED CYPRUS SHOULD JOIN THE EU”European Parliament President Patrick Cox said yesterday that a united Cyprus should join the European Union, adding that he was hopeful on reaching a solution to the Cyprus problem in order for both sides to join the EU together. Cox yesterday met with Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) President Rauf Denktas in the Turkish north after visiting the island’s Greek south. /Cumhuriyet/
 TUSIAD CHAIRMAN SPEAKS ON TURKEY’S EU ACCESSIONThe Turkish Association of Industrialists and Businessmen (TUSIAD) yesterday celebrated Europe Day, the anniversary of the establishment of the EU, with activities called “Youth and European Day” in Istanbul. Speaking at these activities, (TUSIAD) Executive Board Chairman Tuncay Ozilhan said, “If Turkey cannot get a date for full membership negotiations by the end of the year, it could well break off from the EU during its accession and be left alone.” Remarking that such a situation would negatively affect the economy and the process of structural reform, Ozilhan added, “The indefiniteness concerning the nation’s EU membership accession is blurring Turkey’s plans for the future and making the current uneasy situation that much harder.” /Hurriyet/
 DERVIS: “TURKEY’S GROWTH IS GOOD FOR GREECE”The winds of peace blowing between Turkey and Greece are also being felt in the two countries’ economies. Visiting Greek Economy Minister Nikos Christodoulakis and Turkish Economy Minister Kemal Dervis held talks yesterday about concrete steps which would move the countries’ economies into closer cooperation. Dervis told reporters that the visiting Greek minister had proposed a trilateral cooperation in which Italy would also participate. If this is achieved, he said, there would be more competition in the energy field on the European market. Dervis continued: ”Our real economic cooperation can be achieved by the private sectors of both nations. As this cooperation increases, the growth of the Greek economy would be beneficial for Turkey, and Turkey’s growth would be beneficial for Greece. Economics describes this concept as the ‘neighborhood effect’.” /Sabah/
 CB FOREX RESERVES REACH RECORD HIGHForeign exchange reserves of the Central bank increased by $178 million during the week of April 26–May 3, the bank announced yesterday. The reserves reached a record high from $22.21 billion to $22.39 billion. The CB began to buy forex heavily in April and continued to do so last week. /Hurriyet/
 FROM THE COLUMNS… FROM THE COLUMNS… FROM THE COLUMNS…
 DIFFERING INTERPRETATIONS OF TURKEY’S NATIONAL PROGRAMME BY FERAI TINC (HURRIYET)Columnist Ferai Tinc writes on differing interpretations of Turkey’s National Programme. A summary of her column is as follows:
“To mark Europe Day, a series of significant meetings were held yesterday and politicians made remarkable statements to underline the importance of Turkey’s bid for European Union membership. Turkey’s short-term goals on its path towards full EU membership were clarified at yesterday’s meetings: to abolish the death penalty and to eliminate obstacles against the right to broadcast and be educated in mother tongue languages.
If we can manage to fulfill these goals, then the EU is likely to determine a specific date for Turkey to begin its accession negotiations at the Copenhagen summit scheduled for the end of this year.
However, a consensus hasn’t yet been reached among the coalition partners. We see that the Democratic Left Party (DSP) and the Motherland Party (ANAP) seem to be in favor of taking the necessary steps before the Parliament recesses for summer. However, the Nationalist Action Party (MHP) disagrees with them.
Is that really the case?
In his speech to mark Europe Day yesterday, Deputy Prime Minister Mesut Yilmaz accused certain circles within the MHP of being conservatives who are opposed to any fresh winds in Turkey’s national life. However, these circles within the MHP argued that the National Programme contained no regulation on the right to have education in mother tongue in and asked, “Why is the National Programme being re-discussed? Haven’t we already approved it?”
It is true that the National Programme doesn’t include a clear statement on these issues. This ambiguity was previously criticized by the EU. However, in its National Programme, Turkey promised to sign a number of international agreements regulating such issues under the sub-heading of “Full Enjoyment by All Individuals without Any Discrimination and Regardless of Their Language, Race, Colour, Sex, Political Affiliation, Creed or Religion of All Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms: Freedom of Thought, Conscience and Religion.” Turkey’s signing of such agreements would definitely mean finding solutions to certain political hot potatoes such as the above-mentioned ones.
The MHP has serious concerns on Cyprus since it doesn’t trust Europe. Some believe that if the Greek Cypriots are allowed to join the EU without reaching a permanent solution on the island, then a serious crisis might emerge between Turkey and the EU.
All of these concerns must be addressed immediately.”
 GREECE’S PLANS OVER CYPRUS BY MUSTAFA BALBAY (CUMHURIYET)Columnist Mustafa Balbay comments on Greece’s and the European Union’s plans and current policies on Cyprus. A summary of his column is as follows:
“The parties on Cyprus have once more turned another bend on the road towards a permanent solution. Since Kofi Annan will be the first UN secretary-general to visit the island in 30 years, a question comes to our minds: What’s next?
Recent developments have clearly showed what kind of plans Greece is planning to implement on Cyprus: to establish a model similar to that of western Thrace. In other words, Turkish Cypriots will be a minority on the island and there will be no longer be any Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC).
Meanwhile, TRNC President Rauf Denktas recently presented a written proposal to Greek Cypriot leader Glafcos Clerides suggesting that a partnership state be established with two equal states. However, Clerides rejected the proposal as soon as it got it. Now what Denktas should do is to not leave the peace talk table until the EU’s Copenhagen summit this December.
It is also interesting that the European Union is helping anti-Turkey groups and trying to form organizations against Turkey on the island. The Union has so far spent $30 million on nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) and such groups which lobby against Turkey.
However, it is also high time for some self-criticism! During the last decade, Turkey has always allowed the island to be adversely influenced by our own domestic problems. In other words, we ourselves have given these circles many openings to criticize us and lobby against us.
From a wider perspective, we can see that the EU has a two-faced policy. On the one hand, the Union supports the disintegration of the Balkans, and on the other, it desires that the two parties on Cyprus be united at all costs! Disintegration by force in the Balkans, and integration by force on Cyprus! This is what they call a Western type of peace policy!
While pursuing such a policy, the EU is at the same time addressing the Greek Cypriots as follows:
‘We will let you join the EU even if you can’t reach permanent peace!’
In this case, nobody would want to engage in new agreements to find a solution. The Greek Cypriots are aware that they don’t have to come to terms with the Turkish Cypriots to join the EU.
The Greek Cypriots are unceasingly increasing their armaments on the island. This is understandable, as they are planning to be EU’s eastern Mediterranean base!”
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