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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 007509

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, DECEMBER 8, 2003


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


HEADLINES
BRIEFING
EDITORIAL OPINION


HEADLINES


MASS APPEAL
Grossman and terror delegation to Turkey - Hurriyet 12/7
Bin Ladin sends 24 terrorists to Turkey - Hurriyet
Will Wolfowitz quit Pentagon? - Hurriyet
Al-Qaida's new targets are Turkey, Iraq - Sabah
Saddam leads resistance from west of Baghdad - Milliyet
TRNC referendum on the Annan Plan December 14 - Milliyet
PM Eroglu: Elections will determine the fate of TRNC -
Turkiye
Kirkuk last stop on Rumsfeld's oil tour - Sabah 12/7
Hillary Clinton: Bush the largest threat to America's future
- Milliyet 12/7


OPINION MAKERS
Grossman coming to press for Cyprus solution - Cumhuriyet
TRNC elections to determine the future of Cyprus -
Cumhuriyet
FM Gul: Elections mark the beginning of a new era in Cyprus
- Radikal
Rumsfeld's secret Iraq visit - Cumhuriyet 12/7
Rumsfeld in Iraq to boost morale of US troops - Radikal 12/7
US killed nine Afghan children - Cumhuriyet
US bombs children in Afghanistan - Yeni Safak
US-Russia tension growing over Tbilisi - Zaman 12/7


BRIEFING


Grossman due in Turkey: US Undersecretary of State Marc
Grossman will be in Turkey on Monday, "Hurriyet" reports.
Accompanied by counter-terrorism specialists, Grossman will
visit the sites which were targeted by fundamentalist
suicide bombers in Istanbul in November. Grossman is
expected to meet with Foreign Minister Gul and MFA U/S
Ambassador Ziyal in Ankara on Tuesday. Grossman is coming
to step up pressure on Ankara regarding Cyprus, according to
Monday's "Cumhuriyet."


PM Erdogan to US in January: Prime Minister Erdogan will be
visiting the US January 28-30 at the invitation of President
Bush, Sunday's "Cumhuriyet" claims. Erdogan is expected to
discuss some crucial issues such as Cyprus, Iraq, Turkish-
American relations and the struggle against terrorism.
"Cumhuriyet" regards the visit as a tactical AK Party effort
aimed at renewing trust with the US.


Al-Qaida elements in Turkey: Quoting security sources,
Sunday's "Cumhuriyet" reports that Al-Qaida spent about
$400,000 for the suicide bombings in Istanbul. The C-4
explosives used in the bombings had been smuggled into
Turkey in cheese cans, according to "Cumhuriyet."
Logistical support came from abroad, and the bombings were
planned and staged by local al-Qaida cells. Monday's papers
cite a "Newsweek" report claiming that Osama bin-Laden had
ordered 24 Turkish members of Al-Qaida who were living along
the Pakistan-Afghanistan border to go to Turkey for
operations against the US and its allies.


Cyprus: Deputy Prime Minister Abdullatif Sener visited the
Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) on Sunday to
discuss a number of development projects. Turkey has no
intention of injecting funds into the TRNC for the upcoming
elections in December, Sener stressed before his departure.
Papers view the Sener visit as signaling AK Party support
for the current TRNC government. Meanwhile, TRNC Prime
Minister Eroglu has voiced confidence that his party would
get 40 percent of the votes in Sunday's poll. An agreement
within the framework of the Annan Plan will bring the end of
the TRNC in five or ten years, Eroglu claimed.


Uzans hiding in the US: US officials have notified Turkey
through Interpol that Kemal Uzan and his brother Yavuz, are
in the US, Monday's "Hurriyet" reports. Kemal Uzan is under
surveillance in California, while Yavuz Uzan is hiding in
New York. The paper claims that Attorney-General John
Aschcroft assured Justice Minister Cemil Cicek last week in
Washington that if the Uzans are in the US, they would be
caught and extradited to Turkey.


EDITORIAL OPINION:


"Rumself in the Middle East"
Yilmaz Oztuna wrote in the conservative, mass appeal Turkiye
(12/8): "Secretary Rumsfeld's visit to the Middle East is
symbolically very important because he is the prime
proponent of the "Pax Americana." "Pax Americana" is a
national policy for both Democrats and Republicans.
However, the Republican Party has followed the policy
guidelines designed by hawks such as Rumsfeld, and pursued
this strategy in an inexperienced and aggressive way. .
Rumsfeld's visit to Tbilisi looked like a sci-fi movie. He
called on the Russians to withdraw from Georgia, which could
have been a subject for a science fiction novel 15 years
ago. Yet his visit to Baghdad presented the real challenge
for him. Rumsfeld is trying to capture the reality of Iraq.
This can't happen, because the US occupied Iraq without a
viable plan once the military operation was complete.
Rumsfeld can only boost the morale of US troops in Iraq.
When it comes to understanding the reality in Iraq or
Afghanistan and taking control of events on the ground, the
US has already missed that chance."


"The US and the AKP"
Yasemin Congar wrote in mass appeal Milliyet (12/8): "The
year 2004 is critically important for the US administration,
particularly in the fight against terrorism in the aftermath
of operations in Afghanistan and Iraq. 2004 is also
crucially important for Turkey, particularly concerning the
future of Cyprus as well as Turkey's EU accession process.
Not surprisingly, then, Washington attaches great importance
to PM Erdogan's upcoming visit to the US in early January.
. Justice Minister Cicek's recent visit to Washington set
the tone for the prime ministerial visit. A high-level US
official expressed satisfaction with the meetings with the
Turkish minister. The official said Cicek's evaluation of
terrorist events as a `fight against radical Islam' was
viewed as highly important in Washington circles. `It is
very important to see that the message about the fight
against radical Islam comes from the AKP, which has a clear
Islamic character yet has the political will to develop
relations with the Western world and with democracy,' the US
official noted. This is going to be the gist of the agenda
when Erdogan and Bush meet in Washington."


EDELMAN

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