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Cablegate: Southeast Turkey Press Summary,

This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 ADANA 0407

SIPDIS


E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL PINS PGOV PHUM TU IZ ADANA
SUBJECT: SOUTHEAST TURKEY PRESS SUMMARY,
NOVEMBER 30-DECEMBER 1, 2002


1. This is the Southeastern Turkey press summary for
November 30-December 1, 2002. Please note that
Turkish press reports often contain errors or
exaggerations; AmConsulate Adana does not vouch for
the accuracy of the reports summarized here.


POLITICS, SECURITY, HUMAN RIGHTS
--------------------------------


2. OHAL ENDS IN DIYARBAKIR AND SIRNAK
(Hurriyet/Radikal/Sabah/Turkiye/Bolge) The fifteen-
year-old State of Emergency (OHAL) was lifted in
Diyarbakir and Sirnak on November 30. Between 1,000
and 2,000 people, mostly youths, gathered to celebrate
OHAL's abolition by dancing to the tunes of folk
songs, burning sparklers and shouting slogans in
support of peace, democracy, freedom and PKK leader
Abdullah Ocalan. Interior Minister Abdulkadir Aksu
paid a last visit to Diyarbakir prior to the
abolition. Aksu said the administration returned to
normal in the region and added studies continued to
come up with new applications regarding the status of
village guards. Evrensel reported that, regarding
changes to take place in the region following the
abolition of OHAL, Diyarbakir Bar Association
President Sezgin Tanrikulu displayed a "Let's wait and
see" attitude, noting that the Provincial
Administration Law had changed all of Turkey into an
OHAL. Cumhuriyet reported the Diyarbakir Democracy
Platform formed by 46 NGO's, political parties,
professional chambers and labor unions celebrated the
lifting of OHAL in a meeting held at the Municipal
Theater Hall by applauding and cheering. The paper
indicated 33,070 people have lost their lives in the
region since 1984.


3. HRA REPORT ON MISSING MUS MAN
(Evrensel) A Human Rights Association (HRA)
delegation issued a report following their
investigation of the disappearance of Varto (Mus)
resident Siddik Kaya after he had left home to meet
with local Jandarma official Celal San. The report
said there were efforts to present the incident as an
ordinary judicial incident, but noted relations
between Kaya and San were not judicial and simple
relations. The report stressed there was serious
evidence confirming Kaya's disappearance in custody.
Kaya's father, Tekdemir Kaya, suspects San of having
handed Kaya over to the Kartal family as the suspected
murderer of Ahmet Kartal.


4. PKK SUSPECT RELEASED
(Evrensel) Van State Security Court ordered the
release of Sabahattin Ozmen, arrested in Istanbul in
1999 and then ordered to remain in custody for
"membership in the PKK," based on information from
(PKK) informants arrested in Tatvan (Bitlis) in 1993.
The court is awaiting a medical report from the
Forensic Medical Department saying if Ozmen is sane or
not.


5. DEHAP OFFICIAL ACQUITTED
(Evrensel) Hakkari Felony Court acquitted Democratic
People's Party (DEHAP) Hakkari provincial chairman
Musa Ciftci, charged with violation of Article 159/1
of the Turkish Criminal Code by "criticizing the court
via press." The charges stemmed from Ciftci's holding
a press conference to criticize the detention of
People's Democracy Party (HADEP) Hakkari provincial
chairman Sebahattin Suvagci in February 2002.


ECONOMIC AND AGRICULTURAL DEVELOPMENTS
--------------------------------------
6. ADANA DELEGATION LOBBYING FOR EU
(Milliyet) A Mediterranean Exporters Union (MEU)
delegation, led by MEU President Tarik Bozbey, met
with contacts in Brussels, where (EU) Bi-lateral
Commercial Relations Director Lee Bail and OECD
Director Joan Jean met the delegation. In Brussels,
Bozbey and his delegation talked about the results of
the (November 3) parliamentary elections held in
Turkey and Turkey's EU bid.


7. A WHITE LIE SAVES MARDIN
(Sabah) Mardin Residents Education and Solidarity
Foundation (MAREV) President Ibrahim Ozlen's "UNESCO
will declare Mardin a world province after Venice and
Jerusalem" statement in 2000 has had effects of a
magic touch on the historic province, which had been
neglected for years. This statement has been the
salvation of Mardin, where the value of historic homes
rose to USD 200,000 and the number of visitors jumped
from several thousand to 150,000 people. Ozlen
explains the reason for this lie: "We were not able
to attract the attention of the press or anyone else
no matter what we did. Everyone claimed ownership
over and supported my lie. Even State officials
believed it."
HOLTZ

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