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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 02 ANKARA 005072

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, AUGUST 11, 2003

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


HEADLINES
BRIEFING
EDITORIAL OPINION
--------------------------------------------- -
HEADLINES


MASS APPEAL


Gen. Buyukanit: We cannot Ignore the Problems in Iraq -
Hurriyet
Buyukanit: "The Military Should not be Used for Political
Ends" - Milliyet
President Sezer Did Not Stay for the Wedding - Sabah
PM Erdogan's Son Married in Istanbul - Turkiye
5 Witnesses for the Wedding - Milliyet
Green Light for Heybeliada Theological School - Aksam (8/9)
Patriarch Bartholomew Requests Reopening of Halki Seminary -
Hurriyet (8/9)
FM Gul: "AKP Will Win Local Elections" - Sabah
Government Allows NASCO to benefit from Foreign Exchange
Amnesty - Hurriyet


OPINION MAKERS
General Buyukanit: Iraq is More Risky Today - Radikal
The Year's Wedding Brought Three Ministers Together - Zaman
EU Wedding - Yeni Safak


BRIEFING


General Buyukanit's Farewell Party: All papers report on the
farewell cocktail party given by Deputy Chief of General
Buyukanit for Ankara journalists yesterday. Buyukanit said
that `Turkey can not remain indifferent to problems in
neighboring Iraq. Although Iraq is riskier today then ever
before, the military is well aware of its responsibilities.
The Troop deployment will be a political decision. No one
should attempt to manipulate the military for political
purposes.' "Vatan" notes that the statements by Buyukanit
are particularly important, as he is expected to become the
next Chief of the General Staff in 2006. The General
commented that a system of judicial review on decisions of
the High Military Council (YAS), an idea proposed by PM
Erdogan, would violate the constitution. Buyukanit stressed
that the military remains concerned about EU harmonization
reforms and has communicated these concerns to the
government.


Prime Minister's Son Married in Istanbul: All papers cover
the wedding of Prime Minister Erdogan's son Bilal. The
ceremony took place in the Lutfi Kirdar Congress Building in
Istanbul. Around 10,000 invitees, including Italian Prime
Minister Berlusconi and Albanian Prime Minister Nano, were
in attendance. President Sezer attended a Philosophy
congress in the same building yesterday morning, but it was
noticed that he did not attend the wedding. TGS Chief
General Ozkok did not attend the wedding but sent flowers.
Extraordinary security measures were taken all day around
the congress building.


NASCO Holding: "Hurriyet" draws attention to a `scandal'
created by the current government. During former PM
Ecevit's administration, the assets of NASCO Holding were
frozen in accordance with the UN decision to block assets of
terrorist organizations and those who finance them. NASCO's
assets were frozen because of its alleged links to Al-Qaida.
However, with the new Foreign Exchange Law, published in the
official Gazette on August 6, the AKP government has allowed
NASCO to regain control of its assets.


EDITORIAL OPINION: Iraq; Cyprus


"The future of Iraq"
Kamuran Ozbir commented in the nationalist Ortadogu (8/11):
"Discussion about the future of Iraq requires a through
analysis of the Saddam era. Saddam's policy for northern
Iraq for 30 years was basically to convert all northern
Iraqis into Arabs. The oil-rich Arab tribes in south and
central Iraq were transferred to the north, and non-Arab
minorities -- Turkmen, Kurds and Assyrians -- were all
forced to leave the area. The agony did not stop there,
because after the demise of the Baath regime a campaign has
been initiated to convert the region's Turkmen into Kurds.
. Turkmen are the third largest ethnic group in Iraq
following the Arabs and Kurds. Kurdish groups still claim
authority over the oil-rich Kirkuk region. After the
collapse of Saddam regime, Kurds declared Kirkuk as the
center of Kurdistan, and they deployed their fighters there
with the permission of coalition forces. Yet Turkmen
parties declared Kirkuk as their territory and remained
there as well. Tension and confusion remains in this area.
The issue can only be resolved by taking the facts into
account. Terror or military force will not settle anything.
It seems the region will enjoy peace once all Iraqis are
given their Constitutional rights."


"Customs Union with Northern Cyprus: A fiasco"
Erdal Guven criticized in the liberal-intellectual Radikal
(8/10): "The AKP government must realize the fact that the
worst-case scenario for Cyprus, especially for Northern
Cyprus, is `no-solution' approach that has been used up to
now. Turkey so far has launched more than 20 initiatives to
bolster the Northern Cypriot economy, including the most
recent Turkey-Northern Cyprus Custom Union agreement. All
of these efforts have failed, and the latest one is doomed
to fail as well. The salvation for northern Cyprus is
through a lasting settlement on the island followed by EU
membership."


DEUTSCH

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