Search

 

Cablegate: Ankara Media Reaction Report

VZCZCXRO2988
OO RUEHDA
DE RUEHAK #0762/01 0931332
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O 031332Z APR 07
FM AMEMBASSY ANKARA
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 1562
RUEKJCS/CJCS WASHDC IMMEDIATE
RUEKJCS/SECDEF WASHDC IMMEDIATE
RUEKJCS/OSD WASHDC//PA
RUEUITH/ODC ANKARA TU
INFO RUEHTH/AMEMBASSY ATHENS 7945
RUEHIT/AMCONSUL ISTANBUL 2448
RUEHDA/AMCONSUL ADANA 1817
RUEHBS/AMEMBASSY BRUSSELS 5837
RUEHBS/USEU BRUSSELS
RUEHNO/USMISSION USNATO 5591
RUCNDT/USMISSION USUN NEW YORK 2210
RUEUITH/DET 1 39LG ANKARA TU
RHMFIUU/USDOCO 6ATAF IZMIR TU
RHMFIUU/39OS INCIRLIK AB TU
RHMFIUU/AFOSI DET 523 IZMIR TU
RHMFIUU/39ABG INCIRLIK AB TU
RHMFIUU/AFOSI DET 522 INCIRLIK AB TU
RUEUITH/AFLO ANKARA TU

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 ANKARA 000762

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

DEPARTMENT FOR INR/R/MR, EUR/SE, EUR/PD, NEA/PD, DRL
JCS PASS J-5/CDR S. WRIGHT

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: OPRC KMDR TU
SUBJECT: ANKARA MEDIA REACTION REPORT
TUESDAY, APRIL 3, 2007


In Today's Papers

High Court Scraps Effort to Isolate Alcohol-Serving Restaurants
Hurriyet, Milliyet, Sabah, Radikal, Cumhuriyet and others report the
Turkish Council of State (Danistay) has annulled a directive issued
by the Interior Ministry with an aim to relocate restaurants serving
alcohol to "red zones" in suburbs. Prime Minister Erdogan had
defended the effort saying "protection of young people from bad
habits" was "stipulated by the constitution" whereas mainstream
media criticized the attempt, calling it an attempt to create "red
light districts." A debate was kicked off in Turkey in July 2005
when the ruling AKP government changed the law on municipalities to
allow local administrations to regulate locations of restaurants
serving alcohol to certain zones to be determined by city councils.


Anavatan Loses Party Group Status in Parliament
All papers report that after the death yesterday in a traffic
accident of Omer Abusoglu, a Gaziantep province lawmaker from the
opposition Motherland Party (Anavatan), the number of Anavatan MPs
in the Parliament dropped to 19, breaking up their party group. The
current distribution of seats in Turkish Parliament is, AKP 354, CHP
153, ANAVATAN 19, DYP 4, SHP 1, HYP 1, GP 1, Independent 10, and
Vacant 7. In order to form a party group, Turkish law requires that
a party hold at least 20 seats in Parliament.

Kurdish Mayor Arrested for Praising Ocalan
All papers report Aydin Budak, Kurdish party DTP mayor of Cizre
township in the southeastern Turkish province of Sirnak, has been
arrested for saluting Abdullah Ocalan in a speech during Nevruz
celebrations by saying, "Happy Nevruz, Imrali." Imrali is the
prison-island where the PKK leader is imprisoned. Budak's lawyers
said they would appeal the verdict while a group of DTP supporters
and Cizre Municipality employees protested the arrest.

YOK to Discuss New Universities, Erdogan Presidential Candidacy
Milliyet, Sabah and Cumhuriyet report the Turkish High Education
Council (YOK) is to convene university rectors in an extraordinary
meeting April 5 to discuss the ruling AKP government decision to
open 17 new universities and the election of Turkey's new president.
Papers expect YOK to respond to Prime Minister Erdogan and
Education Minister Huseyin Celik's criticisms with regard to the new
universities as well as evaluate Erdogan's possible candidacy for
president.

Turkey to Take over ISAF Command Again
All papers report Turkey will assume its second term leadership of
the Kabul Regional Command in Afghanistan. Brigadier General Kasim
Erdem will assume the second term Kabul Regional Command. With the
handover of the command on April 6, the number of Turkish troops
deployed in the region will be increased to 1,150 from 750.

Editorial Commentary on Iran, Kirkuk
Haluk Ulman comments in the economic-political daily Dunya: "Iran
continues to defy the US and the UK in the latest crisis over
captured British sailors. Where does Iran get this courage from?
There are many rumors but the most important reason is the belief
that the US, in trouble in Iraq, will not be able to attack Iran.
Of course, Iran will be harmed in many ways in case of an armed
conflict with the US. Iran's badly administrated economy will
worsen and its infrastructure will be damaged beyond repair. The
example of two clashing pitchers should always be remembered: if one
pitcher is broken, the other one will get cracked. So Iran should
change its attitude soon. If the aim is to protect the peace, then,
just like people, countries also should learn to control their
desires."

Sami Kohen observes in the mainstream daily Milliyet: "The Kurds'
target in Kirkuk is very obvious; they are trying to change the
demographic structure of the city to their advantage and claim

ANKARA 00000762 002 OF 002


Kirkuk as the capital of the Iraqi Federation of Kurdistan. Kirkuk
has been moving in this direction for a while. Since the end of the
Saddam regime, around 650,000 Kurds migrated to Kirkuk. Meanwhile,
because of pressure and threats, around 90,000 Arabs have left
Kirkuk. The Kurds, on their arrival in Kirkuk, quickly settle down
and illegally take possession of property. The Kurdish majority
will increase in Kirkuk after more Arabs leave the place using the
government's incentives. This causes a serious concern among the
Turkmen population. Turkmen businessmen have already started
leaving Kirkuk for good and migrating to Turkey or to some Arab
countries. Turkmen officials in Kirkuk say that the phase of
threats and pressure will be followed by the phase of terror. Many
Turkmen lost their lives in the latest bombings and the rest are
living in fear. Is this the way to return Kirkuk to normal?"

TV Highlights
NTV, 7.00 A.M.

Domestic News

- Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul is to travel to Germany Tuesday on a
two-day official visit to meet with his counterpart Frank-Walter
Steinmeier and launch a project on providing consular services on
the internet.

- CHP MP Kemal Anadol accused Prime Minister Erdogan of trying to
manipulate the nation with regard to the presidential elections.

- Turkey's economic growth exceeds government and market
expectations of 5 percent, reaching 6 percent in 2006, said Deputy
Prime Minister Abdullatif Sener, adding national income has grown
about 7.3 percent in the last four years.

- Three "purse snatchers" have been sentenced to life in prison for
killing a woman while trying to steal her bag in Istanbul.

International News

- US House Speaker Nancy Pelosi met with Lebanese officials in
Beirut in a fact-finding trip to the Middle East that has drawn
criticism from the White House because it includes a visit to Syria.


- Iraqi prosecutors seek the death penalty for Saddam Hussein's
cousin "Chemical Ali" for his use of poison gas against the regime's
opponents including the Kurds.

- Iraq's most senior Shiite cleric, Grand Ayatollah Ali al-Sistani,
has opposed a new draft that would allow thousands of former members
of Saddam Hussein's Baath party to return to public life.

- An explosives-laden truck blew up outside a police station in the
northern Iraqi city of Kirkuk on Monday, killing 13 people including
9 children.

- The Independent columnist Robert Fisk describes the strains
between Iran and Britain as a "war of humiliation."
WILSON

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
World Headlines

 

Ramzy Baroud: Year in Review Will 2018 Usher in a New Palestinian Strategy

2017 will be remembered as the year that the so-called ‘peace process’, at least in its American formulation, has ended. And with its demise, a political framework that has served as the foundation for US foreign policy in the Middle East has also collapsed. More>>

ALSO:


North Korea: NZ Denounces Missile Test

Foreign Affairs Minister Winston Peters has denounced North Korea’s latest ballistic missile test. The test, which took place this morning, is North Korea’s third test flight of an inter-continental ballistic missile. More>>

ALSO:

Campbell On: the US demonising of Iran

Satan may not exist, but the Evil One has always been a handy tool for priests and politicians alike.

Currently, Iran is the latest bogey conjured up by Washington to (a) justify its foreign policy interventions and (b) distract attention from its foreign policy failures.

Once upon a time, the Soviet Union was the nightmare threat for the entire Cold War era – and since then the US has cast the Taliban, al Qaeda, and Islamic State in the same demonic role. Iran is now the latest example…More


Catalan Independence:
Pro-independence parties appear to have a narrow majority. More>>