|Sunday, 11 April 2021|
Turkish Press Review, 09-06-05
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From: Turkish Directorate General of Press and Information <http://www.byegm.gov.tr>Summary of the political and economic news in the Turkish press this morning
 PM ERDOGAN TRAVELS TO MOLDOVA FOR COOPERATION SUMMITPrime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan yesterday went to Kishinev, Moldova to attend the Heads of State and Government Summit as part of the Southeastern Europe Cooperation Process. Before departure, Erdogan told reporters that regional and global matters would be discussed on the highest level during the summit. Stating that the process is an important cooperation platform reflecting the common will in the region, Erdogan added that Turkey would take over the rotating presidency of the process following the meetings. "Improving bilateral relations with countries in the region is among the main goals of Turkey's policies towards the Balkans," Erdogan said. /All papers/
 OBAMA REACHES OUT TO MUSLIM WORLD, CALLS FOR NEW START IN TIESUS President Baracak Obama sought a new beginning between the United States and the Muslim world in a major speech he delivered at Cairo University in Egypt yesterday. "I have come here to Cairo to seek a new beginning between the United States and Muslims around the world, one based on mutual interest and mutual respect, and one based upon the truth that America and Islam are not exclusive and need not be in competition. Instead, they overlap, and share common principles; principles of justice and progress; tolerance and the dignity of all human beings," he said. Appreciating Muslims' contributions to the world civilization, Obama said, "Throughout the history, Islam has demonstrated through words and deeds the possibilities of religious tolerance and racial equality." Obama also pledged to fight negative stereotypes of Islam, saying, "I consider it part of my responsibility as President of the United States to fight against negative stereotypes of Islam wherever they appear. But that same principle must apply to Muslim perceptions of America. Just as Muslims do not fit a crude stereotype, America is not the crude stereotype of a self-interested empire." Referring to his speech in Ankara in early April, Obama said, "America is not and never will be at war with Islam," and added, "Islam has always been a part of America's story. Since our founding, American Muslims have enriched the United States." Stressing the rising interdependence among world nations, Obama said, "Any world order that elevates one nation or group of people over another will inevitably fail. Our problems must be dealt with through partnership; our progress must be shared." He also reiterated his country's determination to continue to fight violent extremism of all forms by respecting the sovereignty of nations and the rule of law. Stating that faith should not be a divider element, but bring the people together, Obama said the US welcomes Turkey's leadership in the Alliance of Civilizations, and other efforts to improve the interfaith dialogue. Obama concluded his speech saying, "The people of the world can live together in peace. We know that is God's vision. Now that must be our work here on Earth." /Hurriyet/
 INITIAL REACTIONS TO OBAMA'S LANDMARK ADDRESS TO MUSLIM WORLD IN CAIROCommenting on US President Barack Obama's recent key speech at Cairo University of Egypt yesterday, which sought to get his country's relations with Muslim world back on track, President Abdullah Gul said, "With his expressions and commitments in the speech, Obama proved once more that he is a constructive leader with whom Islamic countries can establish partnership to ensure peace and stability in the region and the world." Calling Obama's remarks sincere, honest and realistic, Gul said, "I think that the messages given by President Obama were quite clear. He sincerely shared feelings and thoughts of people in Islam countries and expressed them. This is very hopeful. Also, consistency of his today's remarks with his statements during pre-election campaigns revealed his coherence." Speaking to reporters in New York yesterday, Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu characterized Obama's recent remarks as timely and accurate. “It is not possible to disagree with him on the matters he mentioned; but these issues on the agenda require active intervention,” he said. /Hurriyet/
 FM DAVUTOGLU OFFICIALLY STARTS MEETING AT THE UNSCForeign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu yesterday officially started a meeting at the UN as a result of Turkey becoming the term president for June, which took place for the first time at the UN Security Council (UNSC) after 48 years. In his speech, Davutoglu stated that Turkey was deeply committed to supporting ideals and principles which take place in the Charter of UN as a responsible member of the international community. Turkey took over the rotating presidency of the UN Security Council on June 1 for one month. The presidency of the UN Security Council rotates among 15 members in alphabetical order. Turkey has been a member of the UN Security Council since January 2009. As one of the 10 non-permanent members, it will stay in the council until the end of 2010. /Cumhuriyet/
 GOV'T ANNOUNCES NEW STIMULUS PACKAGE TO COUNTER GLOBAL ECONOMIC CRISISThe government has embarked on yet another stimulus package to cushion the impact of the global economic crisis, which still batters the world markets, on Turkey's economy. Following a series of previous precautionary packages that have helped the economy stay afloat thus far, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan held a press conference on yesterday to announce the new stimulus package with wider measures. Speaking at the Prime Ministry's office in Ankara, Erdogan said the new package included incentives for investments, saying entrepreneurs will have a corporate tax rate between 2 and 10 percent according to the regions they invest in. The government has recently divided regions into four categories based on their current economic development level and also the investment opportunities they bear. Reacting against the accusations that the government has failed to address problems in economy or fight the crisis, Erdogan said such claims are completely unfair. “What we have done within the past six-and-a-half years since we came to power has been to take measures and implement reforms which have helped Turkey stand firmly on its feet, despite national and international uncertainties.” Reducing taxes, lending financial help to the unemployed, providing small and medium sized enterprises (SMEs) with low-interest loans, increasing infrastructure investments and allocating more money to local administrations are the major measures Erdogan said the government had taken since the eruption of the current global economic crisis. Recalling that the government recently launched a new employment package, Erdogan also said the State Planning Organization (DPT) and the Turkish Employment Organization (ISKUR) will help some 500,000 unemployed people find jobs in the private sector over the next six months. He also noted they will lend financial support to young students who undergo training with private firms. “The government will pay the Social Security Institution (SGK) premiums of interns who began work after April 30 for the next six years and the Cabinet may extend this term,” he noted. /Today's Zaman/
FROM THE COLUMNS… FROM THE COLUMNS… FROM THE COLUMNS…
 THE OBAMA SHOWBY GUNGOR MENGI (VATAN)
Columnist Gungor Mengi comments on the speech by US President Barack Obama in Cairo yesterday. A summary of his column is as follows:
"We watched the show with the theme of 'a new beginning' made by US President Barack Obama yesterday. If you asked me whether it would worth getting excited or not, I would tell you that it depends on your expectations. When he entered upon his duty in January, he addressed to the Islam world, saying that the US pursues a new road based on mutual interests and mutual respect. He didn't put forth a new road map, but he convinced all the circles, except the focuses of hatred who knows nothing but terrorism, that he's well-intentioned.
He hasn't put forth new plans which are expected by points of crisis in the world, but this situation doesn't decrease the historical importance of his address to the Islam world from Cairo, because Obama at least represents a change in the US' style of addressing. As a matter of fact, while Iran and al-Quada criticized his speech, even Hamas defined it as a speech reflecting the change, though it consists of certain contradictions. These initial repercussions point at an important gain, that is, bridges to be built against the groups and regimes which are based on extremities and violence can provide an important progress in order to isolate Islamic terrorism.
There's a general view that Obama is an opportunity which was created to change the US' negative image. Former US President George W. Bush also said good things about Islam, following the September 11 attacks when al-Quada hit the US. For example, he said that Islam means peace and that those terrorists aren't the symbol of peace, but the symbol of evil and war. But then he also became the creator of Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo. Obama has integrated his statements into his actions and thus ordered that the island of torture would be closed. Israel is the first factor in priority which determines the US' Middle East policies; to bring or not to bring a solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. This dilemma will determine both the future of Middle East and Obama's fate.
Some people might doubt that Obama's moves aimed at removing the anti- American stance in the Islam world were determined very carefully. We shouldn't think that they're not right. Obama said yesterday, 'I reject the view of some in the West that a woman who chooses to cover her hair is somehow less equal. But I do believe that a woman who is denied an education is denied equality.' It's not so hard to estimate how the headscarf lobby will use this. Obama paid his first visit to Turkey, a Muslim and NATO member country which is governed by secular democracy. If he doesn't know that discussions on headscarf consist of certain determining effects in politics, it would be impossible not to warn him about it. He shouldn't have expressed this view of him as if laying down a law."
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