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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.

181236Z Aug 03

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 03 ANKARA 005227

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 18, 2003


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


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


MASS APPEAL
Iraq's daily loss from oil pipeline sabotage $7 million -
Hurriyet
Second bomb attack hits Turkey oil pipeline - Aksam
Reuters cameraman killed in Iraq by U.S. troops - Milliyet
UK asks UN to lift sanctions on Libya - Turkiye
Wanted: The Uzan Family - Sabah
Democrats want Commander Wesley Clark against Bush - Sabah
Hambali would have attacked APEC Summit - Aksam 8/17
Lights back on in New York - Huriyet 8/17


OPINION MAKERS
Sabotage paralyzes Iraqi economy - Radikal
Shiites in Baghdad still furious at Americans - Zaman
U.S. worried about Sunni-Shiite alliance - Radikal
Annan wants roadmap for Iraq - Zaman 8/17
Iraqi Kurds oppose Pakistani troops in Iraq - Milliyet 8/17
Uzans not at home - Yeni Safak
50 million Americans meet life without electricity, phone,
water - Radikal 8/16
New Yorkers slept on the streets - Zaman 8/16
U.S. closes People's Mujahidiin's Washington office -
Cumhuriyet 8/17
Hoon to pay the price for Kelly suicide - Cumhuriyet


BRIEFING


Turkish troops for Iraq peacekeeping: "Cumhuriyet" expects
Washington to give a written response to Ankara regarding
the deployment of Turkish troops in Iraq. The Americans
will await Turkey's political decision on the issue before
holding discussions about Turkey's sensitivities concerning
Iraq. The GOT will ask the U.S. for a role in the political
future of Iraq in order to guarantee AKP lawmakers' approval
for deployment of troops in Iraq, "Cumhuriyet" adds.


Weekend papers report that Ankara will send two separate
delegations of parliamentarians along with MFA and
intelligence officials to Iraq for talks with ethnic and
religious communities there next week. A delegation of
Iraqi tribal chiefs will visit Ankara in the first week of
September.


The TGS has estimated the annual cost of sending troops to
Iraq to be around $60 million, with a possible additional
$20 million to cover `extraordinary developments.'
"Hurriyet" reports that it remains to be decided whether
Turkey or the United States will cover the cost of a Turkish
deployment.


PUK opposes a Turkish military presence in Iraq: During his
recent visit to Japan, Patriotic Union of Kurdistan (PUK)
leader Talabani voiced opposition to the deployment of
Turkish troops in Iraq. Talabani said he opposed
deployments of forces not only from Turkey, but from all
neighboring countries. Sunday papers report that the U.S.
Administration did not take Talabani seriously, and an
unnamed Washington official said that Turkey should not pay
attention to Talabani's remarks. Meanwhile, the KDP denied
press reports that the Kurds would deny access to Turkish
troops in Iraq, and vowed to abide by the decision of the
Iraqi central government.


Sabotage on Iraqi pipeline: All Monday papers report about
the paralyzing effect of recent bomb attacks against Iraq's
oil pipeline between Kirkuk and Yumurtalik. Paul Bremer,
head of the Provisional Authority in Iraq, estaimated Iraq's
daily losses from the attacks at $7 million daily. The
reports view the sabotage as a heavy blow on the Iraqi
economy.


U.S. Ambassador Edelman arrives in Ankara: The new U.S.
Ambassador to Ankara, Eric Edelman, arrived with his family
in the Turkish capital on Friday. In a statement at
Ankara's Esenboga Airport, Edelman touched on the
significance of relations between the two countries.
Ambassador Edelman also noted his personal connection to
Turkey, noting that his mother was born in Istanbul, and
that his uncle was a professor at the University of Ankara
31 years ago.


Ankara opposes Israel's Haram-al-Sharif decision: Ankara has
asked Washington to put pressure on Israel to reverse an
Israeli decision to open the Haram-al-Sharif shrine to non-
Muslim tourists, Saturday's "Zaman" reports. Ankara is
concerned that a new conflict over Haram-al-Sharif might
lead to anti-American protests in Turkey, which would
eventually affect attitudes of Turkish lawmakers about the
deployment of peacekeeping troops in Iraq.


Arrest warrant for the Uzan family: The prosecutor's office
has issued an arrest warrant for several Uzan family members
and former administrators at Imarbank for their refusal to
hand over documents to the Banking Supervisory Board (BDDK).
Police raided eight of the Uzans' residences on Sunday, but
could not find the family members. Turkey's border gates
and airports have been warned against possible attempts by
family members to flee the country.


EDITORIAL OPINION: Iraq


"Troops to Iraq"
Hasan Unal argued in the Islamist-intellectual Zaman (8/18):
"Those who strongly advocate Turkey sending troops to Iraq
are avoiding the fact that there are increasing signs that
indicate more instability in the days ahead. The US has
made some mistakes along the way, which have served to
aggravate the problems with the Shiites. The Shiites have
not started an armed struggle against the US, but things are
headed that way. . Given the current facts, it does not
seem logical for Turkey to send its soldiers there unless a
calendar is established for military engagement as well as
political restructuring. At this stage, a wait-and-see
attitude seems like the most rational position for Turkey.
We should gain some time to take into account the positions
of other countries."


"UN-Iraq and Turkey"
Zafer Atay wrote in the economic-political Dunya (8/18):
"The UNSC resolution is vague enough for various
interpretations. The gist of the decision is not about the
establishment of a peacekeeping force, but it provides a
basis for the Iraqi Governing Council to ask for troops from
other countries. . The issue of a Turkish military presence
in Iraq is subject to three different arguments here in
Turkey. There are those who strongly disagree with Turkish
military participation in Iraq; others who strongly support
Turkish soldiers being sent there imminently; and those who
support Turkey's presence in Iraq as long as certain
conditions are addressed. Conditions could include a new UN
decision, support from neighboring countries, and of course
the approval of the Turkish parliament. It seems that the
AKP is not unified on the matter either. Given the
circumstances, Turkey is heading toward some very hectic
days."


DEUTSCH

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