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Cablegate: Southeast Turkey Press Summary for June 22, 2007

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E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PINS PGOV PHUM TU
SUBJECT: SOUTHEAST TURKEY PRESS SUMMARY FOR JUNE 22, 2007


1. This is the Southeastern Turkey press summary for June 22,
2007. Please note that Turkish press reports often contain
errors or exaggerations; AmConsulate Adana does not vouch for
the accuracy of the reports summarized here.

POLITICAL:

2. BOLGE / EKSPRES: CHP National Leader Deniz Baykal will
come to Adana on July 18, a critical day which is four days
ahead of national parliamentary elections, to attend CHP's Adana
rally. CHP invited many celebrities to attend the rally in
order to draw large public attention in the event. Baykal will
hold a rally in Hatay tomorrow (June 23). A CHP Adana
delegation paid a visit to the Yumurtalik district to introduce
CHP's Adana candidates to the local people. The candidates made
a call to people to say no to the U.S.'s Great Middle East
Project. CHP provincial chairperson Serdar Seyhan also opened
the new CHP party building in the district and CHP candidates
paid visits to the local tradesmen. Meanwhile, Dengir Mir
Mehmet Firat, first ranking Adana candidate from AKP, and,
Necdet Unuvar, third ranking Adana candidate from AKP, paid a
visit to the local branch of Ihlas News Agency. Firat said,
"Entering other countries' territory is not an easy decision to
make. It is very difficult to cross the border into the
northern Iraq at this point; however, incursion could take place
if need be, but, I cannot tell you right now when that could
take place. Because, I do not have sufficient information
regarding that issue." Omer Celik, second ranking Adana
candidate from AKP and chief adviser to the premier, opened his
campaign office in the Kozan district. Separately, the dailies
note that DP launched its election campaign on June 11 in Adana
and visited many Adana businessmen. Meanwhile, Recai Yildirim,
MHP deputy general secretary and Adana candidate from MHP,
attended a party meeting in the Sofulu district.

3. GUNDEM: The official car of Abdullah Demirbas, Sur
District Mayor in Diyarbakir, who was removed from office by the
Council of State when he attempted to launch a multi-langauge
municipality service, has been taken from him. To protest this
development, Demirbas toured the city with his bicycle and
inspected some of the municipality worksites.

4. GUNDEM: DTP and representatives of seasonal workers
will launch efforts together to enable the seasonal workers in
the Cukurova region and the Amik Plain, who are currently away
from their cities or hometowns where are they are entitled to
cast votes, to travel back to these cities a few days before the
election day. Meanwhile, the daily continues to give news about
campaigns of the independent candidates who have been opening
campaign offices in their constituencies in the southeastern
provinces.

5. GUNDEM: Six different investigations have been started
against Goc-Der (Association for Social Solidarity and Culture
for Migrants) Chairperson Giyasettin Gultepe on charges of
participating in pro-Ocalan press announcements on different
dates, and of participating in PKK terrorists' funerals.
Gultepe gave his statement to the police authorities because of
these charges.

6. GUNDEM: The court has released eight people who were
detained and arrested for participating in a pro-Ocalan press
statement in Adana on March 3. DTP Van Chairperson was detained
by the anti-terror branch of the police after he gave a
statement to the prosecutor's office. The police have not
explained the grounds for his detention.

7. GUNDEM: Steve Negus, a reporter of Financial Times
newspaper, went to the Mountain Qandil in Iraq, and reported his
observations there and made an interview with a PKK executive
member called Rustem Cudi.

8. GUNDEM: It is reported that military officers were
exerting pressure on the family members of Murat Karayilan, the
PKK chief, who are currently residing at Birecik district of
Sanliurfa.

SECURITY

9. GUNDEM: The daily claimed that six soldiers were
killed (even though the media reported only one had died) in the
attack PKK carried out on a military convoy in Gumushane on June
19 (see press summaries for June 20 and 21).


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10. GUNDEM: Planes that took off from Diyarbakir's
Military Airport surveyed the Gabar Mountain area in Sirnak.
The planes that flew low over Sirnak city center caused a bit of
tremor in the city, reports the daily.

CRIME AND LAW ENFORCEMENT

11. GUNDEM: The relatives of a 12-year-old girl claimed
that the girl committed suicide with a shotgun in Agri's Diyadin
district. The police started an investigation into the case.

12. BOLGE: As a result of joint efforts of Elazig police
and Bingol police, a PKK terrorist, who is a bomb specialist,
was caught in Karakocan district of Elazig. The terrorist was
recruited by the PKK 9 years ago and reportedly had carried out
many bomb attacks to date.

13. SABAH (GUNEY) / HURRIYET (CUKUROVA) / BOLGE / EKSPRES:
Twenty-two drug dealers and people who purchase such drugs were
caught in an anti-drug operation police conducted in Adana. The
suspects were arraigned.

ECONOMY

14. GUNDEM: Mine cleaning studies in the border area with
Syria have started and the teams have detected the mines located
at Sanliurfa's Akcakale district and around the border area
there. The teams started detonating the mines safely and warned
the local people not to go out of their houses as the unsafe
process was going on.

15. BOLGE: EPDK (Energy Market Regulatory Authority) will
be holding the tender to award natural gas distribution license
in Cukurova region on July 20. The distribution area covers
the following provinces and districts: Adana, Mersin, Osmaniye,
Iskenderun, Tarsus, Ceyhan, Dortyol, Payas, Kadirli, Belen and a
few other districts.
GREEN

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