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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 006230

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
FRIDAY, OCTOBER 3, 2003


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


HEADLINES
BRIEFING
EDITORIAL OPINION


HEADLINES


MASS APPEAL
Powell: We've assured Turkey on PKK - Hurriyet
Powell: We will terminate the PKK - Milliyet
Amb. Black: No room for PKK in Iraq - Aksam
Joint struggle against PKK/KADEK - Hurriyet
Turkey, U.S. cooperation against terror - Turkiye
Gen. Sanchez: Location of Turkish troops depend on
their capability - Hurriyet
Government pushes button for troops to Iraq - Sabah
Khatemi gives warm messages to Turkey - Milliyet
Saddam seen in Kirkuk - Sabah
OIC's scandalous Cyprus report - Aksam


OPINION MAKERS
Turkey, U.S. agree to eliminate PKK in N. Iraq -
Radikal
Mark Parris: U.S.-Turkey relations must be redefined -
Yeni Safak
Erdogan in Rome for EU: Iran visit canceled - Zaman
Court OKs `Terrorist Bush' t-shirts - Yeni Safak
Greek Court's historic report on Muslims - Radikal
600 new Israeli houses violate Roadmap - Zaman
Aliyev withdraws candidacy in favor of his son -
Cumhuriyet
North Korean making six atomic bombs - Cumhuriyet


BRIEFING


Ambassador Black's Ankara meetings: Papers report that
the U.S. and Turkey have outlined a joint strategy for
stability in Iraq. U.S. State Department counter-
terrorism coordinator Cofer Black said after meeting
with MFA officials in Ankara on Thursday that there is
no place for the PKK in Northern Iraq. Black noted
that the plan of action envisaged legal, diplomatic,
and financial measures against the PKK/KADEK, and that
top PKK leaders would be handed over to Turkey. The
Turks demanded that the Americans launch operations
against PKK camps. The U.S. will also support Turkey's
appeal to the EU to cut the financial resources of
KADEK and its affiliates in Europe. The U.S. will
press KADEK militants to apply to Turkish authorities
to benefit from the amnesty law adopted by Ankara. The
Americans are not very enthusiastic about joint
military operations with Turkey. Ankara has asked for
written guarantees about the implementation of the
action plan, but an anonymous American official said
that his word should be regarded as a sufficient
guarantee by the Turks, "Cumhuriyet" notes. Ankara has
demanded quick American action to eliminate the PKK,
but the Americans prefer to wait until the deadline for
the amnesty law passes.


Turkey's defense minister outlines reasons for Turks to
be in Iraq: Defense Minister Vecdi Gonul said that 36
countries are currently backing the U.S. in Iraq, and
that Turkey should send troops to further its national
interests. Supporting Iraq's territorial integrity is
the main reason why we should send troops, Gonul said.
If Turkey is in Iraq, he continued, it will be able to
set up a buffer zone against the terror threat posed by
the PKK. A Turkish presence in Iraq will ensure the
uninterrupted flow of oil from Kirkuk to Turkey's
Yumurtalik terminal. All ethnic groups will be given
equal treatment once democracy is established in Iraq,
Gonul stressed, iand we need to be there during this
transition period.


Turkish peacekeepers to Iraq: Prime Minister Erdogan
said on Thursday that his government would decide about
deploying troops in Iraq within 10-15 days. Papers
expect the government to discuss the issue in the
parliament on October 8 or 9.


Greek court might recognize Western Thrace Muslims: In
a report to the Greek Supreme Court, Judge Kasavetis
said that people have a right to decide on their own
ethnic identity. He asked for removal of restrictions
on the use of expressions like `Western Thrace Turks.'
Turkish dailies are hopeful that the Greek court might
acknowledge the identity of over 100,000 Turks in
Western Thrace. Papers believe that Athens, in line
with EU norms, will have to give Turks living in Greece
the right to declare openly their nationality.


Ankara angered at OIC over Cyprus: Ankara is outraged
by a `scandalous' Cyprus report submitted to the
Organization for Islamic Conferences (OIC) by the OIC
Secretary General, in which the Greek Cypriots are

SIPDIS
recognized as the legitimate government of Cyprus.
Ankara had not been informed about the report in
advance, and Egyptian diplomats allegedly briefed the
Greek Cypriots about the event. Apart from Pakistan
and Azerbaijan, OIC members have remained indifferent
to Turkey's objections. Meanwhile, Ankara is making
statements in support of Denktas on the eve of general
elections in the Turkish Cypriot sector, "Cumhuriyet"
notes.


Minister Tuzmen in Tehran: State Minister Kursad
Tuzmen, in Tehran with a business delegation, said that
Prime Minister Erdogan has not cancelled his visit to
Iran. Papers believe that Turkey and Iran are making
efforts to improve bilateral relations. Iranian
President Khatemi warmly welcomed Tuzmen, and said he
would accept Ankara's invitation to pay a visit to
Turkey soon.


AKP on the rise, GP declining - poll: "Zaman" carries
a public opinion poll carried out by the polling
company ANAR in August. The poll indicated an increase
in public support for the AK Party, and a decline for
the Genc Party. The percentage of votes for political
parties were reported as follows: AKP 38, CHP 12.3,
MHP 6.7, Genc Party 6.4, DYP 5.5, DEHAP 4.2, ANAP 1.6.


EDITORIAL OPINION: Iraq/US-Turkey


"Joint Action with the US"
Hasan Cemal commented in the mass appeal "Milliyet"
(10/3): "The issue of PKK-KADEK has played a key role
on the troop deployment issue. Therefore, following
the agreement on a joint action plan to eliminate the
PKK-KADEK in Iraq, Turkey has come closer to sending
its troops to Iraq. . The US has never officially made
a link between Turkey's sending troops to Iraq and US
efforts to eliminate the PKK, yet according to my
diplomatic sources, such a linkage actually makes
sense. . Nevertheless, Turkey should be realistic
about its expectations from the US. There are limits
even for the US under the special conditions in
Northern Iraq. It goes without saying that these
limits will be pushed back at some point, yet a
realistic approach is best. It is also very wrong to
limit Turkey-US cooperation in Iraq to the PKK-KADEK
issue."


"The PKK?"
Erdal Guven opined in the liberal-intellectual
"Radikal" (10/3): "Talks in Ankara with the US about
the fight against terrorism have moved into a strange
context. Ankara has raised the PKK once again as a
military threat. The fact is that Turkey is one of the
very few places where a terrorist threat has been
eliminated solely through military means (Peru's
success against the Shining Path movement is another
example). But the military's progress against the PKK
has not been continued in the socio-political field,
despite some recent steps taken to fulfill EU
conditions. In its talks with the US, however, Turkey
seems to be working to resurrect the PKK as a military
threat. . The way Turkey has handled the issue gives
the impression that Ankara is asking the US to make a
choice between itself and the PKK. This is a serious
tactical flow. It not only overlooks Turkish-American
cooperation on the issue so far, but also pairs the PKK
with Turkey in an odd way. . This may be a domestic
political game of the ruling AKP. The government might
be working on public opinion to give the following
message: `Turkey will send its troops to Iraq, and in
return the US will eliminate the PKK from Iraq.' It
looks like this is the tactic that the government is
trying to pursue."


EDELMAN

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