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.




E.O. 12958: N/A
MONDAY, APRIL 21, 2003




FM Gul: Turkey ready to contribute to peacekeeping in Iraq -
Talabani: No pressure on Turkomen - Milliyet
NYT: U.S. to establish four bases in Iraq - Sabah
Pentagon: Iraq to replace Incirlik - Vatan
Bush: Syria got the message - Turkiye
Simitis to Ankara: Choose Cyprus or the EU - Hurriyet 4/20
Simitis: Time not on Turkey's side - Milliyet 4/20
Simitis: Annan plan a common ground for Cyprus solution -
Sabah 4/20
Simitis' `Enosis' gaffe - Vatan 4/20
Gul: Enosis aspiration proves our doubts - Hurriyet

U.S., EU companies line up for Iraq contracts - Cumhuriyet
Saudi Arabia: Invaders must not use Iraqi oil - Cumhuriyet
U.S. looking to market Iraqi oil via Israel - Radikal
Labor MPs to Blair: Where are WMD? - Zaman 4/20
Sunnis, Shiites protest U.S., Saddam in Baghdad - Radikal
`Liberated' Sunnis, Shiites furious at U.S. - Radikal 4/19
Baghdadians: No to U.S., Yes to Sharia - Milliyet 4/19
Looting continues in Baghdad - Cumhuriyet 4/19
Turkomen: Ankara prevented Kurds from massacring us -- Zaman
Gul: Enosis remarks won't help peace - Yeni Safak

Babacan: Foreign investors interested in Turkey - Dunya
Ankara to provide loan for Turkish Cypriot entrepreneurs -
Finansal Forum


Iraq: Foreign Minister Gul said that Ankara will react
positively to a U.S. call for cooperation in the
reconstruction of Iraq, and was ready to contribute to
international peacekeeping efforts by deploying troops in
the region, papers report. Foreign ministers of Iraq's
neighbors met at a summit meeting in Riyadh. The final
declaration of the summit, which originally carried strongly-
worded accusations against the U.S. and UK, was softened
through Foreign Minister Gul's efforts. Iran was the only
regional country to support Turkey's thesis for the
establishment of a democratic regime in Iraq. The summit
declaration urged coalition forces to leave Iraq as soon as
possible. Gul reportedly said he has received a message in
support of the meeting from Secretary Powell. Monday's
papers report that access to Kirkuk is still controlled by
PUK peshmerges, who force Arabs out of their homes to
facilitate the return of Kurds. Prime Minister Erdogan said
on Sunday that he saw no negative development in Northern
Iraq regarding Turkey's `red lines.' PUK leader Talabani
denied reports of atrocities against the Turkomen, and said
he had informed Turkish liaison officers in the region about
the good relations between Kurds and Turks. Talabani
claimed that the Turkomen Front could not get even ten
percent of the vote in an election in Kirkuk, a town of
700,000. The U.S. will close its bases in Saudi Arabia and
move troops from bases in Saudi Arabia and Turkey to four
new airbases in Iraq, Monday papers report. Commentators
speculate that the significance of Incirlik airbase is
gradually fading for the U.S..

Cyprus: Greek Prime Minister Simitis said during his visit
to the Greek Cypriot sector that Greece has reached its goal
of `Enosis' (integration between Cyprus and Greece) goal.
Foreign Minister Gul said such remarks, if they were really
said, were verification of Turkey's worries about Cyprus.
Weekend papers cover in detail Simitis' visit to the Greek
Cypriot sector. Simitis was the first Greek head of
government to visit Cyprus since 1974. Addressing the Greek
Cypriot parliament, Simitis said that Greeks and Turks on
Cyprus should join the EU together, which, he believes,
would lead to drastic changes in Greek-Turkish relations.
Athens has abandoned its policy of blocking Turkey's EU
membership drive, and Ankara should respond to this gesture
by recognizing Southern Cyprus. Simitis also reportedly
issued a warning that Turkey would have to choose between EU
membership and Cyprus. Simitis later held a meeting with
Turkish Cypriot opposition leaders, who reportedly told
Simitis that the Annan plan for Cyprus should be preserved
as a ground for solution efforts. Sunday's papers speculate
that the meeting was the initial move in an effort to
discard Denktas.


"Turkey's share"
Asli Aydintasbas wrote from Washington in mass appeal Sabah
(4/21): "According to US officials, Turkey will have very
good opportunities in the Iraqi rebuilding process,
particularly in the construction and food sectors. It seems
that the Washington administration now has begun to focus on
the rebuilding program, and Turkey will be one of the main
countries to benefit from this process. . While the plans
for Iraqi rebuilding are underway, the Bush administration
has also decided to close the `Syria file' after issuing
strong warnings to Damascus. A source close to the
Washington administration said that `the message was well
taken' by Syrian authorities. . It seems that the Syrian
administration reaffirmed its cooperation with the US, and
declared that it is not going to become a haven for former
members of Saddam's regime. Therefore, Washington has closed
the file at least for the time being, which also ended
concerns in both the Arab world and Europe that Syria was to
be the next on the list."

"Things for the US to accomplish in Iraq"
Fikret Bila wrote in mass appeal Milliyet (4/19): "Toppling
Saddam's regime is a mission accomplished for the coalition.
However, the demonstrations after Friday prayers show that
the serious mission is about to begin, and the US is not
very sure how to replace the regime. With the exception of
Kurdish groups, there is no social or political movement in
Iraq that supports the invasion. . The people of Iraq are
certainly happy to see that the regime is gone, but will not
be happy about a puppet regime manipulated by the US. The
US is not going to be successful if it takes only Kurds into
the reshaping of Iraq's political structure. The Washington
administration seems to realize this fact. On the other
hand, US and UK forces can only pursue power via weapons,
and it looks as if eventually there will be a new Iraqi
regime established by the use of force. This is because
going to elections at this early stage would be a pointless
effort. The war for the US has now moved to the political
front, which is tougher than the military action itself."


© Scoop Media

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