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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.

301301Z Dec 04




E.O. 12958: N/A


--------------------------------------------- -----



76 Turks Missing After South Asia Disaster - Hurriyet
Two Turkish Rescue Teams in Sri Lanka - Hurriyet
Explosion During Police Raid Claims 30 Lives in Baghdad -
Zarkawi Group Claims Responsibility For Attack Against el-
Hakim - Aksam
US, Israel At Odds Over Israeli Arms Sales to China - Aksam
Tunisian Astrologer Predicts Assassination Attempt Against
Bush in 2005 - Sabah -

5 Million South Asians Cry For Help - Radikal
UN Says Billions of Dollars Needed to Cope With Disaster -
Turkey to Send $1 million in Humanitarian Aid to Tsunami
Victims - Radikal
Bad News From Iraq: Another Turkish Trucker Killed Near
Baghdad - Radikal
Former US Attorney General to defend Saddam - Zaman
UN Aid Convoys Denied Access to Darfur - Cumhuriyet


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Tens of Turks missing after south Asia disaster: MFA
Spokesman Namik Tan said Turkey is looking for over 70 of
its nationals who remain unaccounted for after the tsunami
disaster in south Asia. The Turkish government announced on
Wednesday that it will contribute one million dollars to the
worldwide relief effort for the victims of the tragedy in
South Asia. The Turkish Red Crescent is also collecting
money in a separate fund-raising campaign.

Armitage to meet with TGS chief: US Deputy Secretary of
State Richard Armitage has requested a meeting with the
Thurkish Chief of Staff, General Hilmi Ozkok, during his
January 3 visit to Ankara, "Milliyet" reports. The meeting
will be the first for the TGS with an official from the Bush
Administration since the Turkish parliament rejected the
proposed deployment of US troops to Iraq through Turkey,
"Milliyet" claims.

`Confessions' of a Russian PKK militant: Anatoly Kapilov, a
former Russian soldier who joined the PKK after serving two
years in the Russian army, claimed that a US military
delegation paid a visit to the separatist organization's
camp in the Hakurk Mountains of northern Iraq to meet with
`Amed of Malazgirt,' a camp leader, "Hurriyet" reports.
Kapilov reportedly said the northern Iraqi Kurdish parties,
the KDP and PUK, have provided arms and ammunition to the
PKK. Osman Ocalan's strategic alliance with the US required
him to leave the PKK, Kapilov said. Kapilov claimed that
missiles are being sent to the PKK through Armenia, and
added that the organization had an arms cache near the Lolan
River in which they are storing 2,500 landmines, 2,000
mortars and Katyusha ground-to-air missiles. Kapilov and
four other PKK militants turned themselves in to the Turkish
authorities last month.

Another Turkish trucker killed in Iraq: A Turkish truck
driver was killed near Samarra, north of Baghdad, in an
armed attack on Wednesday. The identity of the driver was
not immediately available.

American families support Iraqi war victims: Families of US
troops killed in Iraq arrived in Amman, Jordan in an effort
to support Iraqi citizens displaced from the town of
Fallujah, "Aksam" reports. The Americans in Amman
supervised the distribution of medicine, medical equipment,
blankets and toys and their transport to Fallujah. The
humanitarian aid is worth $600,000. The American families
blamed George Bush and his government for the ongoing
fighting in Iraq.

US cannot convince Russia on Cyprus: The US is trying to
convince Russia not to block a report by Kofi Annan in which
the UN Secretary General held the Greek Cypriots responsible
for rejecting a UN blueprint for the reunification of Cyprus
in a referenda held last April. The US urged Moscow not to
veto a UN resolution based on the report. The resolution
would call for the removal of sanctions on northern Cyprus,
"Radikal" comments. Moscow allegedly rejected Washington's
request, dashing hopes for a more positive position from
Russia raised during the visit of President Putin to Ankara
earlier this month.

Residents uncomfortable with US Embassy security measures:
Enhanced security measures around the US Embassy in Ankara
have disturbed Turks living in the neighborhood, today's
"Sabah" reports. The US Embassy is surrounded by chain-link
fences, patrolled by police with automatic weapons, and
protected by concrete barriers. District residents are
worried about their security in the face of a possible
attack against the Embassy, and community leaders have
collected 800 signatures for a complaint that will be given
to the Turkish ministry of foreign affairs in January 2005.
As one Turk noted: `I'm a taxpayer, and Americans do not
have a right to block our sidewalks here.'


? Asian Quake
? Ukraine

"Thanks to the Tourists"
Sami Kohen wrote in the mass appeal "Milliyet" (12/30): "One
wonders if the Asian quake would have gained such
international attention had large numbers of foreign
tourists not been in the disaster region. Fortunately,
global tourism has led to a massive assistance effort and
support for the disaster areas. . However, the current
support and attention is not enough. Millions of dollars
are needed to heal the wounds and fight against famine and
disease, but the disaster regions have governments with
severe financial limitations. Assistance from the West
world has started to flow, but has not yet reached a
satisfactory level. . An international mechanism under UN
leadership should have been established for more immediate
reaction to this kind of disaster. Unfortunately, this has
never been done."

"It is Like a Massacre"
Umur Talu wrote in the mass appeal "Sabah" (12/30): "The
death of thousands in a natural disaster always brings a
discussion about whether the death toll could have been
decreased. But this disaster did not stem only from natural
causes - there is a human factor here as well. The failure
to save thousands of lives in Sri Lanka and India is simply
the result of poverty and ignorance. The tsunami early
alert system for the Pacific Ocean (Tsunami Alert Center for
the Pacific), which is run from the United States, was
unable to spread the word in time to India and Sri Lanka,
because they were not member states and because the quake
happened in the Indian Ocean, not in the Pacific. When you
look at it this way, you can clearly see that the lack of
security from natural forces around the world is, to a a
certain extent, man-made. ."

"The Ukraine Challenge for the World"
Yilmaz Oztuna wrote in the conservative "Turkiye" (12/30):
"The crisis in Ukraine is not over. In fact, it is just
beginning. Moreover, the Ukraine crisis is starting to
become a global issue. Following the victory of Yushchenko,
the pro-US and pro-EU figure, Russia announced a joint
military exercise with China. Putin is also trying to take
India into this alliance. In any case, it is certain that
Putin is preparing a declaration of strategic alliance with
China. It will be interesting to see to what extent China
will be able to establish a military alliance with Russia.
India is not likely to change its non-allied stance, but the
fact is that there is a strong effort underway by the
Russians to show their strength against the US and the EU."

"Victor's Victory"
Sami Kohen wrote in the mass appeal "Milliyet" (12/30): "Two
Victors ran in the Ukrainian elections, and Yuschenko was
given a significant victory. Yet the other Victor is not
conceding. Interestingly, there was a similar situation
during the previous elections in November. At that time,
however, the cheating was real and was well documented. .
Yanukovic cannot resist forever, and it is very unlikely
that he will be able to persuade people that he and his
supporters have been cheated. The political atmosphere in
Ukraine should be returning to normal soon. A major shift
in Ukraine's foreign policy should not be expected in the
short run. Yuschenko wants Ukraine to move closer to NATO
and the EU, but he has also signaled a balanced policy line
as he prepares to make his first official trip abroad - to


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