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Cablegate: Turkey: Pol-Mil Round-Up, March & April 2007

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E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: MASS MARR PREL FR AJ PK KS MK YI GM BU AL IT SI
AF, GR, UK, TU
SUBJECT: TURKEY: POL-MIL ROUND-UP, March & April 2007

(Note: This is one of a regular series of unclassified reports on
significant Turkish defense and national security issues in the
press and other open sources. End note.)

Contents
--------

-- CHOD GEN Buyukanit Speaks at War College
-- Anti-Terrorism High Council Convenes
-- Defense Industry Executive Committee Convenes
-- National Security Council Convenes
-- BLACKSEAFOR Maneuvers Takes Place in Eregli/Zonguldak
-- Turkey's Security Relations with Other Countries
-- Defense Industry Activity

CHOD GEN Buyukanit Speaks at War College
----------------------------------------

1. Chief of the Turkish General Staff (CHOD) General Yasar Buyukanit
gave his annual speech to the War College in Istanbul on March 16.
In contrast to previous years, the speech was closed to the press,
but was subsequently leaked to the media. In the speech, Buyukanit
refrained from comment about the upcoming presidential election,
noting that it was not military's duty to comment on political
issues. Touching upon various issues like Cyprus, Turkey's
contributions to peacekeeping operations, ISAF, the fight against
the PKK terrorist organization and the PKK's presence in northern
Iraq, GEN Buyukanit listed ethnic separatism, terrorism and
fundamentalism as the primary threats facing Turkey. Buyukanit
underscored the constitutional responsibility of the Turkish Armed
Forces to preserve the unitary structure of the country against such
threats, and stressed the military's determination to safeguard the
Republic.

Anti-Terrorism High Council Convenes
------------------------------------

2. Turkey's Anti-Terrorism High Council, chaired by Foreign Minister
Abdullah Gul, with participation of Interior Minister Abddulkadir
Aksu, Justice Minister Cemil Cicek, Defense Minister Vecdi Gonul,
Jandarma Commander Gen Isik Kosaner, Deputy CHOD Gen Ergin Saygun,
National Security Council Secretary General Yigit Alpogan, Prime
Ministry Undersecretary Omer Dincer, Turkish National Intelligence
Organization Undersecretary Emre Taner, Turkey's Special Envoy to
Combat the PKK Terrorist Organization GEN Edip Baser and Security
Services General Director Oguz Kagan Koksal, convened on March 13.
This is the fourth meeting of the council in nine months, but only
the fifth since 1997. Counterterrorism activities were discussed in
the meeting, as reported by center-left Radikal daily.

Defense Industry Executive Committee Convenes
---------------------------------------------

3. Turkey's top decision making body on defense industrial
procurement, the Defense Industry Executive Committee (DIEC),
convened on March 30 under Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan, with the
participation of CHOD GEN Yasar Buyukanit, Defense Minister Vecdi
Gonul, Head of Plans and Principles Department GEN Hilmi Akin Zorlu,
Defense Industry Undersecretary Murad Bayar, Deputy Undersecretaries
and Heads of Departments of the Undersecretariat for Defense
Industries (SSM). Agusta Westland of Italy was selected over South
Africa's Denel for Turkey's purchase of up to 50 tactical and
reconnaissance Attack (ATAK) Helicopters, while Otokar of Turkey was
selected over the BMC-FNSS Partnership for the Turkish National Main
Battle Tank Project. DIEC also decided on a number of procurement
projects under the 10-Year Procurement Program, including the

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Turkish National Main Battle Tank Program, New Type Patrol Boat
Project and SAR-35 Boat Modernization (Turkish Defense and Aerospace
Update magazine).

National Security Council Convenes
----------------------------------

4. Turkey's National Security Council (NSC) held its bi-monthly
meeting on April 10. Domestic and foreign developments affecting
Turkey's security and public order topped the agenda. Within this
context, the continuation of military operations against the PKK in
southeast Turkey was noted; the activities of the Hezbollah
terrorist organization and measures taken against them were also
reviewed. Recent developments in Iraq were also discussed and the
importance of preserving Iraq's territorial integrity and political
unity was underscored.

BLACKSEAFOR Maneuvers Take Place in Eregli/Zonguldak
--------------------------------------------- --------

5. The BLACKSEAFOR April 2007 exercise organized by Turkish Naval
Forces under the Black Sea Naval Cooperation Task Group was held
from April 27 to May 3 at the port of Eregli in Zonguldak. The
first phase of the three-phase exercise featured port and
humanitarian aid training, while the second phase included sea
surface, submarine and air defense combat and search and rescue
training. One corvette each from the Romanian and Russian
Federation Naval Forces participated in the exercise and observers
from Russia, Azerbaijan, Bangladesh, Romania, Egypt, Pakistan,
Ukraine, United Arab Emirates, Georgia, Algeria and Italy attended
the third phase of the exercise which ended in Istanbul.

Turkey's Security Relations with Other Countries
--------------------------------------------- ---

6. France: The Turkish Foreign Ministry (MFA) expressed its concern
over the bilateral military agreement signed between France and
Cyprus on March 1. Stating that the Greek Cypriot administration
was not eligible to sign such an agreement, the MFA noted that the
agreement did not comply with resolution parameters established by
the UN and might jeopardize stability and security in the eastern
Mediterranean.

7. Azerbaijan: There was significant Turkish/Azerbaijani interaction
during the reporting period:

- Turkish Deputy CHOD GEN Ergin Saygun met the commander of the
Azerbaijani National Security Forces GEN Zakir Hasanov in Baku on
March 1. During the visit, a high-level military commission was
established for military cooperation, as reported by the
semi-official Anatolian News Agency (ANA).

- A delegation led by Turkish Land Forces Commander GEN Ilker Basbug
met Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev and Azeri Defense Minister
Safar Abiyev in Baku on March 6. GEN Basbug said his visit was
aimed at learning more about reforms in the Azerbaijani military and
discussing the prospects for cooperation between the two countries,
according to the APA News Agency in Azeri. The same source quoted
GEN Basbug as saying the visit was not related to US-Iranian
relations.

- Turkish Coastguard Commander GEN Can Erenoglu received his Azeri
counterpart on April 17 in Ankara. Security in Caspian Sea and
Black Sea and bilateral cooperation on the matter were discussed
during the four-day visit (ANA).


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8. Pakistan: Naval Forces from nine countries (USA, Turkey, China,
Britain, Italy, France, Malaysia and Bangladesh) participated in the
week-long 'Aman' military exercise aimed at consolidating efforts in
the war against terrorism in the Arabian Sea/Pakistan on March 6
(Reuters).

Turkey signed an MoU to collaborate in naval research, technology
and development with Pakistan on March 26 during the visit of
Turkish Naval Forces Commander ADM Yener Karahanoglu to Islamabad
(Turkish Defense and Aerospace Update Magazine).

9. Macedonia: Turkish CHOD GEN Buyukanit received his Macedonian
counterpart GEN Miroslav Storanovski. Modalities to promote
bilateral cooperation with a main focus on logistics support within
the NATO-led missions abroad as well as possibilities for
strengthening training cooperation for special units were discussed
during the three-day visit, as reported by independent private
Skopje MAKFAX in English.

10. Kosovo: The Chief of Turkish police forces assigned to the
Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo (UNMIK) Yuksel Celik, said
on March 12 that 180 police officers from Kosovo will receive
professional training on intelligence, the fight against terrorism
and narcotics in Turkey. One hundred forty-two Turkish policemen
are currently participating in UNMIK (ANA).

11. Germany: Turkish Defense Minister Vecdi Gonul received his
German counterpart Joseph Jung on March 13. In a joint press
conference with Minister Jung, Gonul said that Turkey is not
planning to take part in the NATO's missile defense shield project
and will build its own air defense system based on its national
capabilities. Noting that bilateral defense relations will be
promoted, Gonul added that Germany is Turkey's biggest partner in
the production of minesweepers and submarines (ANA).

12. Bulgaria: Turkish Land Forces Commander GEN Ilker Basbug
received his Bulgarian counterpart GEN Ivan Dobrev on March 20. No
information about the subject of their meeting was made public.

13. Albania: Turkish CHOD GEN Yasar Buyukanit received his Albanian
counterpart GEN Luan Hoxha on March 27. No information about the
meeting was made public.
A 10-member delegation of Turkish Armed Forces (TAF) led by GEN
Hasan Memisoglu was received by Albanian President Alfred Moisiu,
Prime Minister Sali Berisha and Defense Minister Fatmir Mediu on
April 6 (ANA).

14. Italy: Turkish CHOD GEN Buyukanit received Italian Naval Forces
Commander Vice Admiral Paolo La Rosa on April 4. No information
about the purpose of the visit was made public.

15. Slovenia: Turkish CHOD GEN Buyukanit received his Slovenian
counterpart GEN Albin Gutman on April 6. No information on the
content of the meeting was made public.
Turkish Defense Minister Vecdi Gonul received his Slovenian
counterpart Karl Erjavec on April 24.

16. Afghanistan: Turkey took over the regional Kabul Command from
France under the International Assistance Force in Afghanistan on
April 6. The number of Turkish troops in Afghanistan increased to
1125 after Turkey assumed command. The additional 400 troops,
including 65 officers and non-commissioned officers, will provide
logistics, communication and security services (ANA).

17. Greece: Turkish CHOD GEN Buyukanit participated in the Meeting
of Balkan Chiefs of Staff on April 18 in Thessaloniki, Greece.

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Chiefs of staff from Albania, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia,
Montenegro, Romania, Serbia, Macedonia and Greece attended the
meeting. Rejecting accusations that Turkish jets violated Greek
airspace, GEN Buyukanit said the planes only crossed the Athens
Flight Information Region (FIR) which is not a border of
sovereignty. According to GEN Buyukanit, the reports of airspace
violations were based on each crossing of the Athens' FIR (ANA).

18. Britain: Turkish CHOD GEN Buyukanit received British Air Chief
Marshall Sir Jock Stirrup on April 24. No information about the
subject of their meeting was made public.

Defense Industry Activity
-------------------------

19. Korea: Defense Minister Gonul received his Korean counterpart
Jang-Soo on March 7. Noting that Korea was among the strongest
candidates for the 'national tank' project', Gonul stated that
Turkey produced the Panter obus with technical support from Korea
and produced simulators of the high tech CASA airplanes for Korea.
Both ministers reiterated their intention to boost cooperation in
the field of defense industry.

20. SSM announced that CESSNA Aircraft Company, EADS, Diamond
Aircraft Inc., Shinyoung Heavy Industries Co, Alenia Aermachhi, Aero
Vodochody, Morovan Aviation and Cirrus Desing Corporation received
the RFP (Request for Proposal) for a Basic Trainer Aircraft for the
Turkish Land Forces.

21. SSM announced that Gulfstream Aerospace Corp, EADS, Bombardier
Inc, and Boeing received the RFP for a Command and Control Aircraft
(KKU) Procurement Project for Turkish Air Forces.

22. SSM issued a Request for Information (RFI) to procure 45 Low
Altitude Air Defense Missile Systems to meet Turkish Land Forces
Command's requirement and 12 Low Altitude Air Defense Missile
Systems to meet Turkish Naval Forces Command's requirement. The
deadline for responding to the RFI is May 31.

23. SSM announced that the following companies received the RFI for
the Long-Range Air and Missile Defense System Program (T-LORADMIDS):
Aselsan-Turkey, Ayesas-Turkey, Boeing-USA, CPMIEC-China,
C-Tech-Turkey, FNSS-Turkey, Gate-Turkey, Havelsan-Turkey,
IAI-Israel, Lockheed Martin-USA, Milsoft-Turkey, Raytheon-USA,
Roketsan-Turkey. Lockheed Martin and Raytheon have declared that
they will respond to the RFI via US Government within the scope of
Price and Availability (P&A) Data studies.

24. SSM signed a contract with Yonca-Onuk joint venture for the
procurement of two fast patrol boats to be built in Turkish
shipyards. The 22 meter-long new patrol boats will facilitate the
early warning, reconnaissance, surveillance and intelligence
activities of the Turkish Naval Forces (ANA).


WILSON

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