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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 005535

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, SEPTEMBER 27, 2004


THIS REPORT PRESENTS THE TURKISH PRESS SUMMARY UNDER THREE
THEMES:

HEADLINES
BRIEFING
EDITORIAL OPINION
--------------------------------------------- -----

HEADLINES

MASS APPEAL
Penal code approved without adultery clause - Hurriyet
Rumsfeld signals US may withdraw from Iraq - Sabah 9/26
Angered at parliament, Khatami postpones Turkey visit -
Milliyet
Greek Cypritos expect UN to launch new Cyprus initiative -
Hurriyet 9/26
US launches Zarkawi operation in Fallujah - Milliyet 9/26
British captive Bigley allegedly killed in Iraq - Hurriyet
9/26
TIME poll shows Bush leading Kerry by 6 points - Milliyet
9/26
"The Guardian" reveals grandfather Bush's Nazi ties -
Hurriyet 9/26
Iran tests strategic missile - Milliyet 9/26
Israeli media boss wants to buy Al-Jazeera - Sabah

OPINION MAKERS
Violence never ends in Iraq: 23 killed - Zaman
Fallujah a ruined city - Radikal 9/26
Truckers targeted in Iraq: 10 killed - Cumhuriyet
Bush, Allawi plan Iraq conference - Zaman 9/26
Iraqi Shiite provinces demand autonomy - Zaman 9/26
EU rapporteur: Turkey not ready for entry talks - Cumhuriyet
9/26
Israel assassinates Hamas leader in Damascus - Zaman
Israel strikes Hamas in Damascus - Cumhuriyet
Israel expands occupation of West Bank - Yeni Safak
Greek Cypriot official blames `TRNC' for training Chechen
terrorists - Radikal
UN: Sudan ready to grant autonomy for Darfur - Yeni Safak


BRIEFING

Parliament passes penal code reform: The Turkish Parliament
adopted a major penal code reform on Sunday, clearing a
major obstacle to Ankara's bid to start accession talks with
the European Union. The law, which amends Turkey's 78-year-
old penal code, is seen as the last legal reform required to
align Turkish legislation with basic EU political norms.
The Parliament was recalled from summer recess for Sunday's
session after PM Erdogan agreed to drop plans to criminalize
adultery in talks with EU officials in Brussels on Thursday.
The new penal code expands freedom of expression, grants
greater individual freedoms, and increases penalties for
rights abusers and torturers. The law will be submitted to
President Sezer for approval.

Brzezinski visits Ankara: On Friday, US Deputy Assistant
Secretary Ian Brzezinski discussed cooperation on defense

SIPDIS
issues with Turkish military officials in Ankara. The US
side raised with the Turkish General Staff (TGS) the
possible redeployment of 48 F-16s from Germany to Incirlik
Air base. The Turkish side raised the issue of the PKK
presence in northern Iraq. The meeting was held as
preparation for the Turkish-American high level defense
group meetings to be held late this year.

Gul meets Powell: FM Abdullah Gul discussed Iraq, the PKK,
and the safety of Turkish truckers in Iraq at a meting with
Secretary Powell in New York last Friday. Gul stressed that

SIPDIS
Turkey and the US are long-time allies who have been
cooperating on many issues, not only in Iraq. `Cooperation
between our two countries can be seen from Afghanistan to
the Balkans, from energy issues to the fight against
terrorism,' Gul recalled, noting that US-Turkish cooperation
is not just in the military field. Secretary Powell pledged
continued US attention to Turkish concerns including Kirkuk,
trucker security, and the PKK. Gul is scheduled to meet
with his Armenian and Chinese counterparts on Monday.

Khatemi postpones Turkey visit: President Mohammad Khatami
has postponed a scheduled visit to Turkey after the Iranian
parliament blocked two major contracts signed with Turkish
companies. Khatemi's political rivals in parliament passed
a bill giving them veto power over a deal signed with
Turkcell, Turkey's biggest mobile phone operator, to set up
the first Iranian private mobile phone network. The law
passed by the Iranian parliament also targets a $200 million
contract with the Turkish-Austrian consortium TAV for
construction and operations at Khomeini International
Airport.

Peace Monitoring Force to end Mission in Iraq: "Cumhuriyet"
reports that the Peace Monitoring Force, established in 1997
to ensure peace between rival Kurdish groups in northern
Iraq, will be officially disbanded in October. Turkish
members of the monitoring group will be pulled back to
Turkey.

Turkish Red Crescent Employee Evacuated to Ankara:
"Cumhuriyet" reports that Turkish Red Crescent employee
Mustafa Pekcan, who had been critically wounded in a
terrorist attack against a humanitarian convoy near Mosul
last week has been successfully evacuated to an Ankara
military hospital by US forces. The paper reports that
Pekcan received care in Mosul by both Iraqi and US military
doctors.

Kurdish lawmakers due in Brussels: Former DEP lawmaker
Leyla Zana is to go to Brussels on October 12 to lobby for
amnesty for members of the PKK/Kongra Gel. Papers speculate
that Zana will try to persuade the EU to force Ankara to
grant a `political amnesty' to PKK members. Zana,
accompanied by three other Kurdish lawmakers, will address
the European Parliament and receive the Sakharov Prize in
Brussels. Zana's request for a meeting with EU expansion
commissioner Guenther Verheugen has not yet been confirmed.


EDITORIAL OPINION: Iraq; Iran's Nuclear Program

"President Bush's Maneuver on Iraq"
Yasemin Congar wrote from Washington in the mass appeal
"Milliyet" (9/27): "On one hand, Washington is working
diplomatically to secure more foreign troops in Iraq from
countries such as Romania, Georgia and Fiji. But on the
other hand, Washington has started making plans for a
possible pull out from Iraq. There is strong speculation in
Washington about a relatively quick withdrawal from Iraq in
the event that President Bush is reelected. This argument
is based on the observation that the neo-cons have realized
that forming a stable democracy in Iraq remains a far-
fetched dream. . The administration is looking at this
argument, but has not yet come to the same conclusion.
President Bush has repeatedly said that the US is not
looking to `escape' from Iraq, while Kerry promises a
complete withdrawal by 2008 after establishing peace and
order there. Nevertheless, sources close to both Kerry and
Bush acknowledge the diminishing chances for success in
Iraq, as they increasingly look at the situation as a `new
Vietnam.' . In any case, Turkey should be prepared for any
scenario in Iraq, including the possibility of a US pull-out
that delegates security to local Iraqi forces before order
is fully established in the country."

"Iraq was not Enough -- Now it is Iran's Turn"
Zafer Atay commented in the economic-political Dunya (9/27):
"Recently, there have been intense discussions in Washington
about how to end Iran's nuclear research program. Some say
that a quick-strike operation will be carried out against
Iran's 8 nuclear facilities. After destroying these
facilities, Iran will either be invaded or a pro-western
regime will be supported to take over power. In this way,
Iran will be `liberated' just like Iraq. .There is no doubt
that the US, together with the UN and other western
countries, would like to show that Iran's nuclear weapons
will not be tolerated. All developing countries claim that
the goal of their nuclear research is purely civilian. Both
Pakistan and India exploded their atomic bombs at the same
time they insisted on their commitment to peace. They then
applied for membership in the `nuclear club,' which the US
was trying to maintain as an exclusive group. Most
countries involved in nuclear projects open their doors to
the Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA). Only a few, including
North Korea, Israel, and Iran, want to continue their
research behind closed doors. We recall that Israel
attacked an Iraqi nuclear plant in the past. Did Israel
have the right to carry out such an attack? No, it did not,
because Israel also is carrying out a secret nuclear program
that is not subject to outside control. Despite all this
secrecy, neither the US, nor Britain, France, Germany or the
UN ever question Israel. Naturally, the real supporters of
peace do not want the world turned into a nuclear waste site
after a possible war. North Korea, Iran and Israel should
give up their nuclear programs immediately."

EDELMAN

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