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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 0047

SIPDIS


E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL PINS PGOV PHUM TU IZ ADANA
SUBJECT: SOUTHEAST TURKEY PRESS SUMMARY
FEBRUARY 19, 2003

1. This is the Southeastern Turkey press summary
for February 19, 2003. 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. THIRTY-FIVE PEOPLE ARRESTED IN ADANA
(Milli Gazete/Sabah/Bolge) The Adana security
Directorate arrested 35 people who were
identified to be involved in various actions such
as demonstrations, blocking roads, and tossing
Molotov cocktails, sticks and stones against
security forces. After their interrogation it
was stated that their actions aimed at improving
terrorist leader Ocalan`s prison conditions and
ending his isolation. Security officials stated
that these individuals were preparing to take
actions against public institutions.


3. VILLAGE GUARDS REFUSE TO BE CONTRACT SOLDIERS
(Milli Gazete) The temporary village guards
working in Hakkari said they did not want to be
American contract soldiers. Leader of Jirki Clan
Mehmet Adiyeman said that three thousand members
of the clan were village guards, and in case of
war against Iraq they will be ready to fight
along with the Turkish Army. Adiyeman said they
have received information that America would like
to see village guards on their side in a possible
war against Iraq. He said they did not want
America's money to become contract soldiers.

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4. TURKISH RED CRESCENT PREPARES FOR POSSIBLE
WAR
(Milli Gazete/Turkiye) Kizilay is preparing for
immigrants coming to Turkey because of a possible
war against Iraq. Kizilay is carrying equipment
from warehouses in Ankara, Elazig and Erzurum to
Sirnak where they will establish the main
warehouse. Milli Gazete reports that a group of
60 people from Turkish Red Crescent will go to
northern Iraq to make preliminary preparation for
tents to be set up for refugees. The Health
Ministry held a meeting with provincial health
directorates in southeastern Turkey yesterday to
prepare for the refugees. The Health Ministry is
aiming at providing health services to one
hundred thousand people.


5. EIGHTEEN ARRESTED IN PROTEST OF ISOLATION
(Evrensel) Eighteen people were arrested in
Hakkari, Van and Mersin for participating in
demonstrations in favor of PKK/KADEK leader
Abdullah Ocalan. The Labor, Peace and Democracy
Bloc protested in Mersin against war and Ocalan`s
isolation; police intervened. Mersin DEHAP
provincial chairman Muzaffer Akad was among the
18 people who were beaten and later arrested.


6. DEHAP SAYS "NO TO WAR"
(Bolge) Adana DEHAP provincial chairman Mehmet
Cancelik stated in his speech that Turkey is
being dragged into war regardless of the
increasing demand for peace. America's
intervening will mean death to the people in the
Middle East.


ECONOMIC AND AGRICULTURAL DEVELOPMENTS
--------------------------------------


7. THE PORT THAT AMERICA WANTS
(Hurriyet) American Ships carrying soldiers and
equipment have been near Turkish territorial
waters for days. If the Turkish National
Assembly approves, these ships will first dock at
Iskenderun port. The port is waiting for the
fifty million dollar investment for
modernization. The telephone company has
connected special telephone lines to the port,
and cranes have removed scrap equipment. Two
warehouses in the port have been rented to
Americans. Hurriyet reports that American
vessels were as close as twelve miles to
Iskenderun before the Sacrifice Holiday. On
Monday these vessels withdrew to a point between
Syria and North Cyprus.


8. BOMB-LOADED FLIGHTS ON INCIRLIK AIR BASE
(Tercuman/Milli Gazete) The activity continued
at Incirlik airbase yesterday with F-15 and F-16
jets loaded with bombs flying to northern Iraq.
Tercuman reports that some of the F-16 jets
returned with bombs, yet some came back without
bombs. The intensity continued on the ground
with the repair and maintenance of the runway.
HOLTZ

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