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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.

111433Z Jul 05

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 05 ANKARA 004035

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, JULY 11, 2005


THIS REPORT PRESENTS THE TURKISH PRESS SUMMARY UNDER THREE
THEMES:

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

HEADLINES

MASS APPEAL
Erdogan: Turkey, US Are Strategic Partners - Aksam
"Mail on Sunday": UK Plans Pullout of Troops From Iraq -
Vatan
Italy to Withdraw From Iraq - DB-Tercuman 7/10
`Ordinary' Day in Iraq: 35 Killed - Milliyet
Secretary Rice Visits China - HO-Tercuman 7/10

SIPDIS
Bakiyev the New President of Kyrgyzstan - Milliyet
20-Year Civil War Ends in Sudan - Hurriyet 7/10
Another Turkish Driver Killed in Iraq - Sabah

OPINION MAKERS
Reactions to London Bombings Shift to Islam - Cumhuriyet
Religion Representatives Denounce Terror in London - Zaman
Sunday Times: 16,000 Potential Terrorists in Britain -
Radikal
Britons Proud of Calm Reaction To Bombings - Radikal 7/10
Mosques Across Britain Face Retaliatory Attacks - Radikal
7/10
Sarkozy: Turkey Has No Place in Europe - Cumhuriyet
Perle: Islamic Ideology a Threat To Non-Muslims - Radikal
7/10
Srebrenica Massacre A Disgrace for Europe - Zaman
US, UK Plan `Secret' Pullout From Iraq - Cumhuriyet
Foreign Diplomats Flee Baghdad - Yeni Safak 7/10
Iran Plans 20 New Nuclear Plants - Yeni Safak 7/10
PKK Mine Blast Kills 3 Troops - Radikal 7/10
95 Percent of Lawyers Complain About Judicial Corruption -
Yeni Safak 7/10
Central America Surrenders to Hurricane Dennis - Yeni Safak
7/10


BRIEFING

Erdogan Returns from the US: Evaluating his trip to
participate in the Sun Valley Conference in Idaho, Prime
Minister Tayyip Erdogan told the press in Ankara yesterday
that he had discussed in the United States the issue of
fighting terrorism and Turkey's sensitivity on that
question. `The next day, unfortunately, came the bombings
in London,' Erdogan said. He stressed that Turkey and the
United States are strategic allies that share universal
values. `My visit was useful in strengthening the ties
between Turkey and the United States. I believe that the
talks I held there will help to advance our economic
relationship and create new opportunities for the promotion
of our country,' Erdogan emphasized.

Before returning home, Erdogan attended a meeting of the
World Affairs Council of Northern California and
Commonwealth Club of California late on Thursday, where he
warned against reflecting a sense of failure in Iraq, and
urged more cooperation to prevent such a development. `We
should do all we can to preserve the political and
territorial integrity of Iraq, and to establish a democratic
system there,' Erdogan said. He also urged that Kirkuk be
recognized in the new constitution as belonging to all the
Iraqi people rather than to a single ethnic group. Erdogan
said that countries in the region should solve their
problems through their own internal dynamics. `To bring
about such a change, the supportive attitude of
international actors, especially the US, has a crucial
importance,' Erdogan stressed. The Turkish prime minister
emphasized that global terrorism cannot be stopped without
making global peace a reality. `The United States cannot
defeat terrorism alone. Neither can Russia, Britain, Spain
or Turkey,' he said. `Common sense and solidarity is needed
to fight terror. Terror is a consequence. Its causes --
poverty and illiteracy -- should be eliminated through
common action,' Erdogan stated. He called on international
actors to spend money to fight poverty rather than on
armaments, and he urged the US to take the lead on this
issue. `Turkey is ready to give every kind of assistance to
the United States in this struggle,' Erdogan said. Erdogan
also called on the international community, including the
US, to end the international isolation of Turkish Cypriots.

Ankara Suspends Process for Signing of EU Adaptation
Protocol: The UK, as EU term president, has objected to
Turkish plans to release a declaration in parallel with the
signing of an adaptation protocol with the EU that would
imply recognition of Cyprus by Ankara, "Radikal" reports.
The Turkish declaration would make clear that the signing of
the protocol would not amount to recognition of the Greek
Cypriot state, and that Turkey would not open its ports and
airports to the Greek Cypriots. Ankara has decided to
suspend the process for the signing of the protocol in the
face of the British warning, "Radikal" claims. Foreign
Minister Gul will discuss the issue with the British Foreign
Secretary Straw in Srebrenica, where the two ministers will

SIPDIS
particpipate on Monday in the tenth anniversary
commemoration of the mass killings of Bosnian Muslims by
Serb forces in July 1995. From Srebrenica, Gul will move on
to London, where he will offer his condolences over the
recent terrorist attacks in the British capital. He FM will
also brief international investors on the situation in
Turkey.

London Bombings: Dailies report over the weekend that the
Al-Qaeda-affiliated Abu-Hafs al-Masri Brigade, the
organization behind the bomb attacks in Madrid and Istanbul,
has claimed responsibility for last week's terrorist attacks
in London as well. Reports say that the two previous
bombings may provide clues about the perpetrators of the
London attacks. The al-Masri Brigade had urged the Turkish
government to pull troops out of Afghanistan and cut ties
with Israel before it bombed two synagogues, a British-owned
bank, and the British Consulate in Istanbul in November
2003.

Religious Affairs Directorate Denounces London Bombings:
Professor Ali Bardakoglu, head of Religious Affairs
Department (Diyanet) in Turkey, has denounced the terrorist
bombings in London. `Those who are behind these attacks
should never forget that killing one human being means
killing all of humanity. They whould know that they will be
punished by God,' Bardakoglu said in a written statement.
Bardakoglu said that the attacks had caused deep sorrow in
Turkey, other Islamic nations, and across the world.
Bardakoglu expressed his wish for a more peaceful world.

OIC Plan to Propose Reforms for Islam: Monday's "Milliyet"
reports that 16 experts from the Organization of Islamic
Conference (OIC) have drafted a plan for reforming Islam in
an effort to cut social and cultural support for radical
Islamic movements. Professor Ahmet Davutoglu, chief advisor
to Prime Minister Erdogan on international relations, is
among the experts involved in drafting the plan, which is to
be implemented after obtaining approval by the OIC at a
summit meeting in Mecca in December. The plan envisages
national programs for fighting corruption, the rejection of
terrorism and radical movements, the encouragement of inter-
religious dialogue, and a fight against illiteracy, poverty,
and child labor. The plan also calls for reforms in
religious education.

Workshop on Women in the BMENA Region: The Organization for
Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) and the United
Nations Development Program (UNDP) will jointly hold a
workshop in Istanbul on Monday within the framework of the
US Broader Middle East and North Africa Initiative (BMENAI),
"HO-Tercuman" reported on Sunday. The two-day workshop aims
to support women's entrepreneurship in the BMENAI region.

Survey: Erdogan Should Continue as PM: According to a
public opinion survey conducted by the Pollmark Company for
the ruling AK Party, 60 percent of respondents said that
Erdogan should not run for the presidency in 2007, but
rather continue as prime minister, "Yeni Safak" reports.
Only 20 percent of respondents want to see Erdogan as
president. If general elections were held today, the
distribution of votes among parties would be as follows: AKP
43 percent, CHP 17, MHP 10.5, and DYP 10.1.

Fundamentalist Turks in Berlin: A report by the Department
for the Protection of Constitution in Berlin said that 2,900
of a total of 3,600 fundamentalists living in the German
capital are Turks, "Radikal" reported on Monday. In at
least 10 out of 100 mosques in Berlin, sermons are being
preached in support of violence, according to the report.

Bomb Blast in Tourist Town: A bomb exploded on Sunday in
the coastal town of Cesme in western Turkey, leaving 22
people injured including a number of foreign tourists,
Monday papers report. The Izmir Governor's Office said the
blast was caused by a shrapnel bomb. Dailies voiced concern
that the bombing may negatively effect Turkish tourism. The
Kurdistan Liberation Hawks (TAK), a militant wing of the
PKK, told the Europe-based pro-Kurdish "Mezopotamya News
Agency" that it was behind the blast in Cesme, and warned
that such attacks on tourist areas would continue.

Former Byzantine Church to Reopen as a Mosque: Istanbul's
sixth-century Little Hagia Sophia Mosque, a former Byzantine
church, is to reopen as a mosque later this year, despite
objections from experts who warned that the mosque is among
the world's most endangered monuments, "Radikal" reported on
Sunday. Experts complained that the mosque's restoration
had been rushed by the Istanbul Municipality in a bid to
reopen it this year. `From the historical point of view,
this is a scandal,' one expert said. A university professor
said that Turkey's Directorate of Foundations had turned
down 5 million USD in financial assistance from the World
Monuments Fund over concerns that the use of foreign funds
might have meant that the building would be restored as a
church or turned into a museum.

Landmine Kills Three Turkish Troops: Three Turkish troops
were killed and 13 wounded when their military vehicle hit a
landmine in Turkey's southeastern province of Hakkari on
Saturday, papers reported yesterday. The landmine is
believed to have been planted by the separatist PKK and
detonated by remote control. An operation is underway to
capture the terrorists.

Turkish Truck Driver Killed in Iraq: A Turkish truck
driver, Hasan Ongun (41), was killed in Iraq over the
weekend in a rocket attack near Anakon Airport, Turkish
papers report. Ongun was ferrying ammunition to US troops
in the region.

Minister Sener Warns Over Foreign Capital: "Milliyet"
reports in a front-page story that State Minister Abdulatif
Sener, who has responsibility for economic issues, has
warned about recent increases of foreign capital in Turkey.
Sener warned that foreign capital is growing quickly in
Turkey's electricity, banking and communication sectors.
`They will take their profits back to their home countries,'
he said, `and we will never be able to close the current
account deficit.' Sener argued that the economic crisis in
Argentina was triggered by en excessive inflow of foreign
capital to the country.

EDITORIAL OPINION: Terrorism; Srebrenica

"Coincidental Fight Against Terrorism"
Ferai Tinc commented in the mass appeal "Hurriyet" (7/11):
"The Justice Ministers of the EU countries will convene in
Brussels on Wednesday to discuss possible new measures to be
taken against terrorism. Considering the statements made
after the London bombings, life will become more difficult
for Muslims in Europe. While a political strategy is
necessary to counter terrorism, the global fight against
terrorism became muddled after the US decided to launch a
war in Iraq as a method for fighting terrorism. While the
all-out war in Iraq was connected with the struggle against
terrorism, people have now become convinced that terrorist
actions will stop only if foreign troops are withdrawn from
Iraq. Will Spain's withdrawal of its from Iraq following
the attacks in Madrid make Spain safe from terrorism
forever? Did Turkey's clear statements that it opposed the
war save it from terrorist attacks? Terrorism and the US
war in Iraq have become like twins attached at the hip. In
addition to radical Islamist terror groups, the PKK and
other terrorist organizations have also started feeding from
this same vein. In order to fight against terrorism
effectively, first the world should recognize the threat
that it faces. Unfortunately, a proper diagnosis has yet to
be made. It will not be possible to develop a strategy
against terrorism until the US and EU stop ignoring other
terrorist organizations and blame only radical Islamists."

"Isn't Terrorism the Price of the Imperialism?
Erol Manisali observed in the intellectual "Cumhuriyet"
(7/11): "It would be the biggest possible mistake to
consider Al-Qaeda as solely responsible of the terror
attacks in London. Terrorism and radical organizations like
Al-Qaeda are the results of imperialism. In some cases,
terrorism was created directly by imperialism, while in
other cases it emerged as a reaction against it. Terrorism
cannot be eliminated until the reasons for the terror are
eliminated. Imperialism is the main reason for terrorism.
Military operations, occupations, bombs, death, poverty, and
hunger feed terrorism. Terrorism sometimes appears as a
tool, and sometimes as a reaction. Terrorism is a tool for
the imperialist countries, while countries that suffer under
imperialism use terror as a reaction. Ireland and Libya are
living proof of this. Attacks by the US and some European
countries after the end of the Cold War have become a new
source for terrorism. It was inevitable that terrorism
would spread following the attacks and occupations by the
US and UK in Kuwait, Afghanistan, and Iraq. Increases in
terror attacks are parallel with increases in imperialist
attacks. If we want to eliminate terrorism, then, we have
to prevent aggressive imperialism. Terrorism will continue
to increase as long as the US and the EU continue occupying
countries for their own interests. If they say that they
cannot survive without imperialism, than they have to put up
with terrorism."

"Mothers in Srebrenica Still Cry"
Semih Idiz wrote in the mainstream daily "Milliyet" (7/11):
"Turkish Foreign Minister Abdullah Gul will attend a very
sad ceremony today in Bosnia-Herzegovina. The ceremony
commemorates the 10th anniversary of the massacre of Bosnian
Muslim men and boys by Bosnian Serb forces in the town of
Srebrenica. This massacre was a clear manifestation of
pathological nationalism. Many Serb nationals still
consider Karadzic, Mladic, and their `scorpions' who carried
out this massacre as heroes. Today's ceremony should cause
us to reflect on Europe's deliberate ignorance during the
war in Bosnia, and the perverted mentality of the Serbs, who
massacred defenseless young Muslim boys by the thousands."

MCELDOWNEY

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
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