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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 001665

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,
THURSDAY, MARCH 18, 2004


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


HEADLINES
BRIEFING
EDITORIAL OPINION


HEADLINES


MASS APPEALS
Denktas Decides Not to Join Four-Party Talks - Milliyet
Massacre in Baghdad -- 28 Dead, 45 Injured - Milliyet
Jordan King Abdullah Asked to Fight Fundamentalism -
Hurriyet
Bomb Attack Commemorates First Anniversary of Iraq War -
Sabah
Denktas Declines to Attend the Second Round of Talks - Sabah
Suicide Attack in Iraq - Turkiye
General Myers Promises to Deal With the PKK - Turkiye


OPINION MAKERS
YOK Withdraws From Education Reform Discussions - Cumhuriyet
PKK Guarantee From Myers - Radikal
Jordan King Promises Free Trade - Yeni Safak
King Abdullah: "We Have to Prove to Radicals That This is
Not Islam" - Zaman


BRIEFING


Cyprus: All papers report that Turkish Cypriot leader Rauf
Denktas announced that he will not participate in the four-
party talks in Switzerland. `TRNC Prime Minister' Talat
will stand in for him. Denktas said that he is not hopeful
of seeing an agreement come out of the talks. Denktas said
that if he had gone to Zurich, people would have thought
that everything was progressing smoothly. "Radikal" says
the Turkish Government heard of Denktas' decision from the
media, and that PM Erdogan was annoyed by the surprise
announcement. After the four-party talks in Zurich, Annan
is expected to fill in the remaining blanks in the Cyprus
agrrement.


YOK Withdraws From Education Reform Talks: "Cumhuriyet"
reports that Turkish Higher Education Board (YOK) officials
have withdrawn from education reform discussions. The paper
speculated that the decision was motivated by the AKP
government's determination to expand educational privileges
for theology school students.


General Myers on the PKK: Most papers and TV channels
covered comments by US Joint Chiefs of Staff Chairman,
General Richard Myers, concerning the US commitment to
eliminate the threat posed by the PKK. At a press
conference, General Myers was asked whether the US would
take action against the PKK. Myers responded that Turkey
and the US are holding discussions on the issue at the
political and military level in order to decide on an
appropriate course of action against the PKK.


EDITORIAL OPINION: Campaign Against Terrorism/Spain/NATO


"Is NATO Diminishing?"
Zeynep Atikkan observed in the mass appeal-sensational Aksam
(3/18): "The upcoming NATO summit is in fact going to shape
the alliance's role for the future. The nature of new
missions, which NATO might be undertaking, will largely
depend on the developments in Iraq. The Greater Middle East
initiative will be brought up to the G-8 summit first, and
later the US will bring it to NATO. The US will most likely
center its argument around whether NATO should be actively
engaged in the region's democratization and stabilization
process, unless the alliance wants to retire. . Bush
administration hopes to charge NATO with new tasks,
particularly on Iraq, prior to the presidential elections.
The Istanbul summit will provide a venue for the exchange of
ideas and perceptions between `old Europe' and the `new
Europe' about the role of NATO in 21st century. Rumsfeld
underlined the importance of a single NATO while
acknowledging the existence of Europe in two categories, the
old and the new Europe. There is no way to make two NATOs,
therefore the Istanbul summit either will come up with a
revitalization, or the retirement of NATO."


"Terror and making a choice"
Hadi Uluengin asserted in the mass appeal Huriyet (3/18):
"The elections in Spain provided a tactical victory for
terrorism. This statement comes from former Secretary of
State James Rubin, and is absolutely a reflection of the
truth. . Let's be honest about the situation. Islamic
fundamentalists carried out an act of punishment and they
achieved two goals. The government in Spain lost and
terrorism affected democracy to the benefit of the
terrorists. This means that terror has become a `player' in
the international politics. These are all very critical
developments and providing a tactical victory for terrorism
will bring very serious consequences. . The situation is as
clear as black and white. We all have to make a clear
choice between `life' and `death.' Otherwise, tactical
victory gradually becomes a strategic victory and that is a
defeat of humanity."


EDELMAN

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