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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.

121403Z Apr 04

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 ANKARA 002109

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,
SUNDAY-MONDAY, APRIL 11-12, 2004


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


HEADLINES
BRIEFING
EDITORIAL OPINION


HEADLINES


MASS APPEAL
Turkish Business Tycoon Sabanci Dies - All papers (4/11)
Coalition in Trouble in Iraq - Hurriyet (4/11)
Intelligence Reports Warned Bush Before 9/11 Attacks -
Hurriyet (4/11)
US Asks For Cease-Fire in Iraq - Milliyet(4/11)
Erdogan to Denktas: "Go Back to Cyprus" - Milliyet
Two Turkish Hostages Freed in Iraq - Milliyet
State Ceremony For Sabanci's Funeral - Sabah
Bush Did Not Take 9/11 Warnings Seriously - Sabah


OPINION MAKERS
FT: Istanbul A Favorite Meeting Place For Terrorists -
Radikal (4/11)
Ankara Orders Denktas to be Quiet - Cumhuriyet
Critical Days in Cyprus - Radikal
Despite Cease-Fire, Fighting Continues in Iraq - Zaman
BBC Survey Shows US As World's Biggest Threat - Yeni Safak


BRIEFING


Death of Sakip Sabanci: Turkish business tycoon Sakip
Sabanci passed away at a hospital in Istanbul on Saturday
morning. Sabanci was president of Sabanci Holding, one of
the two largest family-owned industrial holding companies in
Turkey. Sabanci was a popular, colorful businessman who
left a significant philanthropic legacy throughout the
country. He will be buried today in Istanbul in a state
ceremony.


Cyprus: All papers today report on the strong warning by
Prime Minister Erdogan to Denktas make his case for opposing
the Cyprus referendum to his people in Cyprus rather than to
`marginal groups' in Turkey. "Cumhuriyet" reports that
Erdogan and Parliament Speaker Arinc criticized Denktas for
holding meetings on the Cyprus issue in Ankara and Bursa.
PM Erdogan's statement about Denktas' meetings with
`marginal groups' drew sharp criticism by non-governmental
organizations and other political parties. A headline in
left-leaning "Cumhuriyet" read `Everyone except the AKP
labeled as marginal!' "Radikal" reports that the Greek-
Cypriot communist party AKEL will oppose the UN plan in the
referendum campaign, an important blow against hopes that
the referendum will pass on both sides of the island. `TRNC
PM' Talat, meanwhile, continues to campaign for a `yes' vote
in the North. "Sabah" reports that Denktas has been invited
to the Turkish Parliament on April 15 to deliver a speech on
the Cyprus issue. Saturday's "Milliyet" says the US
Administration is working to obtain a `yes' vote on April
24. A high level US official in Washington said that new
investment and financial assistance would be offered to the
`TRNC' if the UN plan is rejected by the Greek Cypriots and
approved by the Turkish side. "Hurriyet" interpreted the
comment as a signal that the United States would lift its de
facto embargo on Northern Cyprus.
PM Erdogan Visits Japan: PM Erdogan left for Japan on
Saturday for an official visit. A large delegation
including 100 businessmen and 40 journalists accompanied the
Prime Minister.


Azerbaijan's President Aliyev comes to Turkey: "Cumhuriyet"
reports that Azerbaijani President Haydar Aliyev will come
to Turkey tomorrow for his first official visit. He will
seek Turkish support for Azerbaijan in the country's long-
running conflict with Armenia.
EDITORIAL OPINION:
"Baghdad Days"
Asli Aydintasbas wrote from Washington for the mass appeal
"Sabah" (4/12): "The uprising in Sadr and Fallujah has
strengthened the Americans' willingness to deliver Iraq's
administration to the new UN representative, Lakhdir
Brahimi. . Brahimi aims to expand the Iraqi Governing
Council (IGC) in a way to include the Sunni and other
elements in the country. . Shiite and Kurdish leaders claim
that Brahimi is an Arab nationalist, and that he has no
legitimacy in Iraq because of the alleged scandal in the UN
oil-for-food program. However, Washington has sent the IGC
a clear message to `shut up.' . The new US envoy to replace
Bremer after June 30 will either be State Department Deputy
Secretary Richard Armitage or White House Iraq policy shaper

SIPDIS
Robert Blackwill. Ankara has not been on good terms with
Bremer. With this change of office, Ankara might seize an
opportunity to make a new beginning in relations with
Baghdad."


"Law and the struggle against terrorism"
Gunduz Aktan commented in the intellectual/opinion maker
"Radikal" (4/12): "US forces have besieged Fallujah and
killed 300 Iraqi civilians as a punitive action for the
ferocious killing of four American civilians. The
international community has accused US of using excessive
force. . US forces' simultaneous attack on the es-Sadr
militia has changed the nature of the war in Iraq. .
Clashes have spread to Najaf and Karbala, and groups loyal
to al-Hakim and moderate Shiite leader Ayatollah Sistani
have joined in the resistance against US forces. . The US
has thus managed to unite the Sunni with all Shiite groups.
. Shiite and Sunni solidarity in a unified resistance will
strengthen Arab nationalism. If the US grants sovereignty
to the Kurds, clashes will spread to northern Iraq. The
Kurds would then be at risk of another catastrophe, like
those they have suffered so many times in their history.
Such developments would render invalid the annual US report
on human rights practices around the world, as these reports
do not include Iraq, where the worst violations are taking
place. The US will then lose its leading role in the field
of human rights."
EDELMAN

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