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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 006329

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
TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 9, 2004


THIS REPORT PRESENTS THE TURKISH PRESS SUMMARY UNDER THREE
THEMES:

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

HEADLINES

MASS APPEAL
America's Second Iraq War - Aksam
PM Allawi orders Fallujah operation - Aksam
Too late for Fallujah peace - Sabah
US tanks in Fallujah - Milliyet
Syrian FM Shara in Ankara for Iraq - Milliyet
Majority of Americans want US troops in Iraq until peace -
Hurriyet
Palestinian banker: Arafat has $1 billion in personal
deposits - Sabah
Wife claims Palestinians want to bury Arafat alive -
Milliyet
Suha Arafat confuses Palestine - Turkiye

OPINION MAKERS
Iraq war begins again - Radikal
Operation to crush Fallujah resistance - Radikal
Fear of civilians' massacre in Fallujah, a `mini-Vietnam' -
Zaman
Voices of `massacre' in Iraq - Cumhuriyet
Fallujah a city of death - Yeni Safak
Erdogan congratulates Bush on election victory - Cumhuriyet
Erdogan warns Bush on Iraq - Yeni Safak
`TRNC' seeks formula for early polls - Zaman
Islam becomes a target in the Netherlands - Radikal
Pressure on press, internet continues in Iran - Cumhuriyet


BRIEFING

PM Erdogan congratulates President Bush on election victory:
PM Erdogan called President Bush on Monday to congratulate
him for winning a second term in the White House. Erdogan
reportedly also urged Bush to enhance security for Turks
working in Iraq. Erdogan noted that 60 Turkish nationals
have lost their lives in Iraq so far. The PM emphasized to
President Bush that Turkey wants stability to be established
in Iraq as soon as possible through participation by all
groups in the country. Some papers also report that Erdogan
reminded the President about continuing Turkish concern
about the PKK presence in Iraq and changes to the
demographic balance in Kirkuk.

Syrian FM Shara visits Ankara: Syrian FM Faruk al-Shara
arrived in Ankara Monday for two days of talks. On Tuesday,
al-Shara is to convey a message on regional developments
from President Bashar Assad to his Turkish counterpart Ahmet
Necdet Sezer. Al--Shara will leave for Iran later on
Tuesday. Al-Shara discussed Iraq, Palestine, and other
regional issues with FM Abdullah Gul on Monday. Al-Shara
and Gul discussed the possible shape of things to come in
Palestine after Arafat. Al-Shara voiced support for Turkish
views with regard to the situation in Kirkuk, and the two
foreign ministers stressed the importance of maintaining
Iraq's territorial integrity. Asked my journalists to
comment on the reelection of President Bush, al-Shara said
that there is `optimism all around the world' concerning the
second Bush administration. Al-Shara added that Syria is
prepared to `take all necessary measures' for development in
the Middle East. FM Erdogan is expected to visit Damascus
in late December, and President Sezer plans a trip to Syria
in early 2005.

Dutch court decides against deportation of PKK member: A
Dutch court blocked the extradition of PKK member Nuriye
Kesbir to Turkey. Kesbir, who has been in detention in the
Netherlands since 2001, is accused of participation in 25
terrorist actions in southeast Turkey between 1993 and 1995.
Kesbir is accused of planning and carrying out armed attacks
that resulted in 144 deaths. The court reportedly agreed
with Kesbir's lawyers that the defendant would not be given
a fair trial in Turkey, and that torture is still used in
Turkish prisons.

Court rules out release of Agca: A Turkish court on Monday
turned down a request by Mehmet Ali Agca -- the far-rightist
Turk who shot Pope John Paul II in 1981 -- for his early
release from prison in light of recent legal amendments,
papers report.

Non-Muslim schools to be reformed: Ankara is to remove a
requirement that a Turkish-origin deputy headmaster must
work in all non-Muslim minority schools, "Sabah" reports.
Under the new law, to be finalized in the parliament's
education committee on Wednesday, the post will now be open
to any Turkish national, including a member of a religious
minority.

Greek PM to Nicosia: Greece's PM Karamanlis is due in
Nicosia this weekend to determine a joint policy with the
Cypriots in advance of the December 17 EU summit at which
European leaders will decide whether to open accession talks
with Turkey. A recent poll showed that 52 percent of Greek
Cypriots want their government to veto accession talks with
Turkey in an effort to force Ankara to recognize the
Republic of Cyprus.

Israeli Air Force commander in Ankara: Israeli Air Force
commander General Eliezer Shkedy paid a visit to his Turkish
counterpart, General Ibrahim Firtina, in Ankara on Monday.
The two commanders discussed ways to further cooperation
between their air forces.

Poll shows AKP still popular: A public opinion poll
conducted by the ruling AK Party shows 63 percent of Turks
believe Turkey is not ready to join the EU, "Yeni Safak"
reports. 56 percent think that Turkey should find a way to
join the European bloc without meeting conditions that are
`not appropriate' for Turkey. 37 percent of those surveyed
said they would vote for AKP, while 15 percent prefer CHP.
Pro-Kurdish DEHAP received 5.4 percent. The poll was
conducted in October in several Turkish provinces and
included a sample of 2,503 Turks.


EDITORIAL OPINION: Iraq; Iran

"Fallujah"
Haluk Ulman wrote in the economic-political "Dunya" (11/9):
"The Fallujah war, in fact, is the first open battle between
the US and Al-Qaeda. The US soldiers will have to engage in
a direct fight with Al-Qaeda militants. The resistance
groups consists of some former Saddam-era elements, yet
according to American sources, the Fallujah case is about
the Al-Qaida militants led by Al-Zarkawi. . The militants
are fighting for `jihad' against the US. So the Fallujah
war can also be characterized as a battle between the
holders of `supreme technology' and believers in the `jihad'
against the west. The former will undoubtedly be the
winner, but the consequences of this triumph might be
costly."

"The Nuclear Crisis with Iran"
Fikret Ertan wrote in the Islamist-intellectual "Zaman"
(11/9): "The crisis over the Iranian nuclear program has
almost reached its final stage, as the three big names in
the EU -- the UK, France, and Germany -- have intensified
their efforts to find a settlement before the issue goes to
the UNSC. . Iran is obviously open to the EU initiative and
is cooperating with the EU countries. The three EU members,
on the other hand, are trying to distance the US from the
process. It is very difficult to estimate the US reaction
in the event that Iran reaches an interim agreement with
France, Germany and the UK. It remains to be seen whether
the US will stay out of the process or express
dissatisfaction about the terms of the agreement.
Regardless of the US position, let's hope that the nuclear
crisis with Iran is resolved before it reaches a critical
stage that could pose a serious threat to the region."

EDELMAN

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
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