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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 006563

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, OCTOBER 20, 2003


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


HEADLINES
BRIEFING
EDITORIAL OPINION


HEADLINES


MASS APPEAL
US seeking a formula for Turkish troops to Iraq - Sabah
10/19
Bremer against, Wolfowitz for Turkish troops in Iraq -
Hurriyet 10/18
Gen. Ozkok curious about America's true intentions in
Iraq - Milliyet 10/19
PM Erdogan: Islamic Europe's new reality - Millliyet
10/18
Bush given `fiery' welcome in Manila - Milliyet 10/19
Bush around Asia in six days - Sabah 10/19
Death beats Izetbegovic - Turkiye


OPINION MAKERS
PM Erdogan: Iraq's future unclear - Cumhuriyet 10/19
US planning to reduce troops to 40,000 in Iraq -
Cumhuriyet
Barzani happy with Erdogan remarks - Yeni Safak
America dying in Iraq every day - Yeni Safak
Gen. Boylin apologized to Muslims - Zaman 10/19
Izetbegovic bids farewell - Radikal
Izetbegovic was a man of struggles - Zaman
Iran invites UK, France, Germany to nuclear cooperation
- Cumhuriyet


BRIEFING


Turkish peacekeepers to Iraq: Prime Minister Erdogan
has reacted strongly to American concerns and Iraqi
officials' attitude regarding deployment of Turkish
soldiers in Iraq and said Turkey was not very
enthusiastic about sending troops, say Sunday's papers.
Erdogan said that the Turkish parliament had adopted a
resolution for deploying troops in Iraq in line with a
US request, and stressed that Turks would not go to a
place they are not wanted. Erdogan underlined the
energy, water, food and security problems in Iraq, and
said the country's future was unclear.


Monday's "Radikal" reports a joint declaration against
Turkish troop deployment by representatives of a number
of political parties in Iraq. KDP leader Barzani
welcomed Erdogan's remarks that Turkey would not go to
Iraq without an invitation, according to Radikal.


The US Administration, concerned by reaction from the
Iraqi Governing Council (IGC) to the deployment of
Turkish peacekeepers, is now discussing new scenarios
for cooperation with Turkey, say weekend papers.
Ankara is annoyed by ambiguous American maneuvers, and
complains that US officials were talking to the press
rather than with Turkish officials, diplomatic sources
told the papers.


TGS Chief on Iraq, Cyprus: TGS Chief General Hilmi
Ozkok said over the weekend that US intentions in Iraq
were not clear. Ozkok named instability and the
PKK/KADEK terror threat as the two major sources of
concern in Iraq. Turkey is willing to contribute to
stabilization efforts in Iraq, he stressed. General
Ozkok also noted that Turkey would not turn down a call
for help by the Turkmens in Northern Iraq. Ozkok added
the Cyprus situation could be resolved in a week if
progress is seen on Turkey's EU entry drive.


Cyprus: Prime Minister Erdogan is hopeful that chances
for a solution in Cyprus will increase if a new
administration takes power after the general elections
in the Turkish Cypriot sector in December, weekend
papers report. Sunday's "Cumhuriyet" quoted Greek
Cypriot press reports claiming that the State
Department had decided to support the Turkish Cypriot
opposition and sent a team to Cyprus to work against
Denktas. Commentators write about AKP hopes of seeing
the opposition led by Mehmet Ali Talat emerge
victorious in the polls. AKP wants to see Talat as a
new figure to replace Denktas in negotiations with the
Greek Cypriots for a solution within the framework of
the UN-sponsored peace plan.


`Diyanet' on the need for change in Islam: Head of the
Religious Affairs Directorate (Diyanet) Prof. Ali
Bardakoglu said that religious practices and norms
should be reviewed in line with the new conditions
required by modern times. The Directorate has prepared
booklets for the youth and adult citizens in Turkey.
The promotion campaign to be launched will initially
focus on the place of women in Islam, papers say.


EDITORIAL OPINION: Iraq/OIC Summit


"US is confused but."
Cuneyt Ulsever commented in mass appeal Hurriyet
(10/20): "The US has successfully ended the war in Iraq
but failed to establish order. And worse is to come
because the US does not have a clear vision of how to
achieve order in Iraq. The US only presents a dazed
and confused picture..Many circles, including in
Turkey, are actually happy about the failure on the US
side. To be honest, this is something that bothers me
very much. The US is confused in Iraq and that is the
very reason for Turkey to be there. Otherwise, the
situation is like sitting and watching the fire in
immediate neighborhood. Turkey should be in Iraq not
only to helping out the US forces, but, more
importantly, to serve its very own interests. It is
worrying to see that the US is not influential enough
with the IGC despite the fact that the members are
appointed by the US. The situation is becoming more
chaotic. Therefore, Turkey should insist on taking on
an active role in Iraq."


"Islamic Countries Ignored the Iraq Reality"
Ferai Tinc commented in mass appeal Hurriyet (10/20):
"The OIC summit has missed an important chance to shape
a policy line on Iraq. Short-sighted assessments and
individual ambitions overshadowed the discussion of
Iraq. Therefore, the summit failed to design an
alternate plan for Iraq's reconstruction or to
establish a joint action plan. Turkey and Pakistan
worked together for a joint Islamic peacekeeping force,
yet failed..The overall majority of the OIC countries
signify a fact: The leaderships are preserving their
reign under the disguise of `sacred religion.' And
those leaderships have just abandoned Iraq to its
destiny."


EDELMAN

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