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Cablegate: Ankara Media Reaction Report

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

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 03 ANKARA 001201

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
MONDAY, FEBRUARY 24, 2003

THIS REPORT WILL PRESENT A TURKISH PRESS SUMMARY UNDER THREE
THEMES:


HEADLINES
BRIEFING
EDITORIAL OPINION
-------


HEADLINES


MASS APPEAL
Shocking Dialog Between Bush and Yakis-Milliyet
Turkey and the US had mainly agreed on many issues-Sabah
FM Yakis: If we reach an agreement with the US, the decree
can be on Parliament's Tuesday agenda-Hurriyet
US Troops are coming-Turkiye
US Military Vehicles wait for Parliament decision in
Iskenderun harbor-Hurriyet(2/23)
Critical Day in Cyprus-Milliyet


OPINION MAKERS
Turkey and the US agreed on political issues, economic
issues on hold-Zaman
Bush Wants to use the base in Batman also-Cumhuriyet
Perle: If Besar Esad (Syrian President) does not consider
the reforms he can be the second target after Saddam-Yeni
Safak
Yakis: The main problem is the agreement on military issues
Cyprus condition to the US-Radikal(2/22)
The last tour in Cyprus-Radikal(2/23)


BRIEFING


Iraq: Papers report Turkey and U.S. have reached agreement
about political issues, but uncertainty continued regarding
compensation of Turkey's economic losses. Turkey, positive
about the U.S. plan to arm the northern Iraqi Kurds, offered
to distribute and collect light weaponry to the groups in
the region, but U.S. turned down the offer, reports say.
Ankara has found unacceptable the U.S. demand for exemption
of American troops from VAT. Monday's papers carry Foreign
Minister Yakis' remarks that compromise about political and
economic issues was near. Yakis stressed Turkey would not
accept minority status for the Turkomen. U.S. is against
Turkey's demand that Turkomen should be represented in the
post-war Iraqi administration, papers add. Saturday's
"Milliyet" says Ankara wanted the militia in northern Iraq
dissolved into a single national Iraqi army after the war.
Weekend reports say if the GOT accepts the economic and
military aid package by the U.S., the parliament will
probably approve on Tuesday deployment of U.S. troops in
Turkey. Saturday's papers report Ankara wanted a Turkish
representative in the interim administration to be set up by
the U.S. in post-Saddam Iraq. Monday's papers carry
concerns of northern Iraqi Kurdish officials' concerns over
Turkish military presence in the region. "Milliyet" reports
that KDP leader Barzani has promised to refrain from
declaring an independent Kurdish state, stay away from
Mosul, Kirkuk, and respect the rights of Turkomen if Turks
do not enter northern Iraq. Weekend papers report ongoing
Turkish military buildup on the Iraqi border. Papers claim
Turkey has deployed 100,000 troops in the Southeast.
Sunday's "Hurriyet" reports U.S. military equipment was kept
at the port of Iskenderun to be deployed to northern Iraq
after the parliamentary decision to allow U.S. troops in
Turkey.


Cyprus: "Milliyet" reports that the UN Secretary General
Kofi Annan has arrived in Ankara to present to Turkish
officials a new version of the UN plan for resolving the
Cyprus issue. There were five important changes in the plan
in line with the demands of the Turkish side, paper says.
The UN deadline for settlement in Cyprus expires on February
28. Annan will hold meetings today with the Turkish
officials and present the plan to the parties in Cyprus on
Wednesday. "Milliyet" lists the positive changes in the
plan, as follows:
1. Karpaz will remain part of Turkish Cypriot territory and
the Greek Cypriots in the region will be allowed to set up
their autonomous administration. In exchange for Karpaz,
Turkish side will give territory from the Guzelyurt region,
to Greek side
2. Greek Cypriots who migrate from south to north will
exercise their political rights in the Greek Cypriot zone,
not in the Turkish zone
3. 50.000 of the migrated Turks (Turks from Anatolia who
have come to Cyprus since 1974) will stay in the island
4. The number of Turkish and Greek soldiers on the island
will be a total of 7200
5. The expression `partners' used in the plan in connection
with the two parties will be replaced with the expression
`founding partners'.


EDITORIAL OPINION: US-Turkey cooperation on Iraq


"The grant should be IMF-linked"
Enis Berberoglu commented in mass appeal Hurriyet (2/23):
"Are we going to wait for another miracle to happen every
year in order to save the Turkish economy? It started first
with the IMF support which followed by the Iraq war. Yet
what is to happen next year? There is only one way to make
Turkey a prestigious debtor: An economic program pursued by
the IMF's control and support instead of politics-engaged
governments. Thus the IMF condition for the US grant is a
must. It is a must, not because the US wants it so, but
because of the high risk of political abuse."


"Just one more step"
Fehmi Koru argued in Islamic-intellectual Yeni Safak (2/24):
"It may be called `negotiations' between Turkey and the US,
yet a closer look will provide us the truth. It is about a
tactical game played by the US in order to manipulate Turkey
in its own war. The bilateral relations are presented under
the `strategic partnership' rhetoric, and it becomes a tool
in the US hands to exert pressure on Turkey. . Washington
not only used moral pressure via strategic partnership
rhetoric, but also tried to close a deal with Turkey at
almost. Therefore a propaganda war has begun saying that
`the US is not desperate for Turkey's support and it will be
Turkey's loss to stay away from the war.' . Thanks to the
Turkish government's efforts, US tactics regarding imminent
Turkish support failed so far. There is still hope for a
settlement without having a war. Turkey can wait for a
second UNSC resolution and can pursue diplomacy with
Washington in the meantime. There is no need to rush the
authorization decree to the parliament."


"Result will not be obtained in the short term"
Osman Oralat wrote in economic/politics Dunya (2/24): "There
are enough indications to believe that the driving force
behind the US plan is about energy resources and oil fields.
The US wants to ensure its hegemony over the resources as
early as possible. Therefore the Iraq operation is going to
be the first of the many more to come. Even if the Iraq
operation is concluded in a short term, there will be new
operations on the way."


PEARSON

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