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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.

221520Z Jul 05




E.O. 12958: N/A
FRIDAY, JULY 22, 2005


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


`Fear Bombs' in London - Milliyet
No Casualties, Low Morale in London - Aksam
Blair: We Will Continue Daily Life as Normal - Vatan
London Police Hunt for Middle Eastern Suspect - Vatan
Tube Stations Targeted: Bush, Oval - Sabah
7/7 Mastermind Esvad Caught in Pakistan - Milliyet
US: Terror a Common Concern For US, Turkey - Turkiye
Kurds Submit Disputed Map To Iraq Parliament - Milliyet
Iraqi Turkmen Threaten Armed Struggle - Aksam
Bin-Ladin's Protector to Washington as Saudi Ambassador -

Al-Qaeda Aims to Provoke Brits Against Government -
A Second Nightmare in London - Yeni Safak
US: Blocking PKK a Common Goal of US, Turkey - Cumhuriyet
Kurdish Leaders Present Map for `Broader Kurdistan' -
Sunnis Boycott Iraq Constitution Process - Radikal
Iraqi Constitution Deadlocked Over Federalism Debate - Zaman
Women's Rights Curtailed in Iraq - Cumhuriyet
Diplomatic Crisis During Rice Visit to Sudan - Yeni Safak
Rumsfeld Due in Bishkek to Discuss US Bases - Zaman
Thousands of Egyptians Rally Against Government in Cairo -
8 Captives Released from Gitmo - Yeni Safak
US Launches Publicity Campaign to Get bin-Laden - Yeni Safak

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Ereli on Turkey-PKK: Responding to press questions
regarding warnings by Turkish authorities that Turkey may
launch a cross-border military incursion against the PKK, US
State Department Spokesman Adam Ereli said he was unaware of
such a statement, dailies report. `Both Turkey and the
United States consider the PKK a terrorist organization, and
they have a common interest in preventing the terrorist
activities of the PKK,' Ereli said, adding that both
countries would act in line with this common interest.
Asked whether the US would allow Turkey to enter northern
Iraq, Ereli said that this question is `not on the table.'
If such a question were to arise, he added, it would be
addressed by the relevant military authorities.

US Confirms Detention Orders for PKK Leaders in Iraq: A
high-level US official in Ankara has confirmed a statement
by General Ilker Basbug, Deputy Chief of TGS, that the US
military has published an order to capture the PKK
leadership cadre. In a statement to "Milliyet," the US
official said that "in an instruction sent to US units in
Iraq, the order was given for the arrest (capture) of PKK
leaders described as "High Value Targets." In a press
briefing on Tuesday, Basbug announced that the US had given
an order for the arrest of the PKK leadership cadre in Iraq,
but State Department Spokesman Adam Ereli created confusion
when he said that he "didn't have any information" about
such an order. The US official noted that the State
Department can't always follow developments between the two
countries' militaries. The US official continued: "What
Basbug said is true. Such an order was published. The
order was given by declaring the PKK leadership cadre as a
high level target, calling for intelligence work to be done
on them, and calling for them to be tracked and captured."

US Has `Other Priorities' in Iraq: Papers report that US
Assistant Secretary for Deatinee Affairs at the Pentagon,
Matthew C. Waxman, told journalists that US forces in Iraq
`priorities other than' the PKK. Responding to a question
about whether there are any PKK members under arrest in
northern Iraq, Waxman said the US fight is directed against
groups like al-Qaeda, the Taliban, and their supporters.
`In Iraq, the US military arrests only those who threaten
security and stability in the country,' Waxman said.

US: PKK Threats Against Turkey Must be Removed: The semi-
official Anatolian News Agency reported from Baghdad that US
military spokesman Lieutenant Colonel Steve Boylan said that
if PKK members are caught during operations against
insurgents, they will be delivered to the Iraqi authorities.
Boylan reiterated US determination to remove the PKK threat
against Turkey from Iraq.

Turkey-Iraq-US Security Summit: Turkish papers report that
the second three-way security meeting among Turkey, the
United States, and Iraq will be held in Washington in the
first week of August. At the second meeting, officials from
the three countries will focus on the legal process
concerning the extradition of PKK leaders.

Iraq and Neighbors Consider Protocol to Prevent Terrorist
Infiltration: Interior Minister Abdulkadir Aksu said
yesterday that the interior ministers of Iraq, Iran, Kuwait,
Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Turkey, Bahrain, and Jordan
agreed at a ministerial-level meeting of Iraq's neighbors in
Istanbul on Tuesday to sign a protocol for the prevention of
terrorist infiltration from Iraq into neighboring countries.
Aksu said that Iraq and its neighbors also agreed to set up
a general secretariat for monitoring implementation of the
protocol in order to fight terrorism and organized crime,
and to ensure border security.

Bashar Wants to Spend Holiday in Erdogan's Hometown: On
Friday, Syria's Deputy Foreign Minister Walid al-Muallem
will convey to FM Abdullah Gul a letter in which Syrian
President Bashar Assad asks Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan to
spend his summer vacation in Turkey's Black Sea coastal city
Rize, Erdogan's home town, "Zaman" reports. The letter also
expresses gratitude for statements made by Erdogan during
his visit to Washington earlier this month, "Zaman" claims.
Gul and al-Muallem are expected to focus on the PKK issue at
their meeting today.

Iraqi Turkmen Warn They May Shift to Armed Struggle: Iraqi
Turkmen Front (ITF) UK representative Asif Sertturkmen
complained in a press conference in Ankara about
`injustices' committed against the Turkmen in Iraq, and
warned that if the situation continues, the group will be
forced to resort to violence. `To date, we have always used
the tools of democracy, but if it becomes necessary, we too
will take up arms. The situation in Iraq is moving in that
direction,' he said. Sertturkmen urged Turkey to take
action and do more than `closely monitoring' events.
Meanwhile, papers report that Turkmen in Iraq warned they
may boycott a referendum on the Iraqi constitution on
October 15 unless their demands are met. The Turkmen want
their language to be recognized as among the official
languages of Iraq. They are also demanding a special status
for Kirkuk, and insisting that the Turkmen be recognized as
one of Iraq's constituent people.

PKK Gets Ammunition, Money from the Middle East, Europe:
The conservative/pro-government "Turkiye" claims that last
year, the PKK made a deal with arms traders in the Middle
East to for the supply of ammunition to carry out terror
attacks in Turkey. Turkish intelligence has learned that
the arms dealers sold the PKK explosives, guns, mortars, and
anti-aircraft missiles at discount prices. Intelligence
reports say that a Lebanese bank acted as a conduit for
money transfers to the terrorist organization. "Turkiye"
notes that the PKK has been extorting money from Kurdish
businessmen in Europe to fund its terrorist activities.

Karayilan May Turn Himself in to Iranians: FBIS reports
that the pro-Kurdish "Nasname" webpage claimed that Murat
Karayilan, one of the leaders of the PKK, is secretly
negotiating with the Iranians on the conditions for turning
himself in to Iranian security forces. According to earlier
unconfirmed reports, Karayilan's five bodyguards were killed
during an assassination attempt carried out by men loyal to
Duran Kalkan and Cemil Bayik, two other PKK leaders.
Reports claimed that Karayilan has maintained close contact
with Turkish and Iranian security forces, and is conducting
negotiations in order to reach an agreement about the
conditions for surrendering himself together with more than
1,000 militants from the `People's Defense Forces (HPG).'

New `Kurdistan' Map Submitted to Iraqi Parliament: Iraqi
Kurdish leaders have presented a new map of `Kurdistan' to
the Iraqi parliament, demanding that it be taken into
account in the drafting of the new constitution, Turkish
papers report. The map includes Kirkuk within the
boundaries of Kurdistan, and expands the area controlled by
Kurdish parties the Badra and Cassan districts southeast of

Erbil Police Want US Security Guards Handed Over: Police in
Kurdish-dominated Erbil in northern Iraq have asked US
authorities to hand over a group of private American
security guards for allegedly shooting at KDP official Bayez
Ismail while he was in his car, Turkish papers report.
During the incident that occurred on July 14, Ismail's
brother was severely wounded when the guards opened fire on
the car, which was reportedly traveling too close to the
Americans' vehicle. The US military has launched an
investigation into the incident.

Erdogan's Upcoming London Visit Unchanged: Foreign Minister
Abdullah Gul strongly condemned yesterday's terrorist
attacks in London, and pledged Turkey's readiness to
cooperate in the fight against terrorism. Gul noted that no
changes have been made with regard to Prime Minister
Erdogan's scheduled visit to London at the end of July.

US to Modernize Turkish F-16s: US-based Lockheed-Martin has
won a contract worth 800 million USD awarded by the US Air
Force for the modernization of Turkey's F-16 jetfighters,
the semi-official Anatolian News Agency (AA) reported from
Washington. The modernized F-16s will become operational in
2011. Lockheed-Martin's deputy chairman for programs, June
Shrewsbury, said the company was pleased by the progress in
its long-standing cooperation with the Turkish government
and defense industry.

American Ships to be Dismantled in Turkey: "Vatan" reports
that 77 US naval vessels that contain toxic substances such
as asbestos, quicksilver, and lead will be sent to Turkey
for dismantling. The timeworn ships will be taken apart in
Turkey's Aegean coastal city of Izmir by the `Environmental
Recycling Systems' (ERS) company, which will receive 21
million USD for carrying out the project. "Vatan" claims
that environmental organizations are preparing to take
action against the dismantling of vessels in Turkey. The US-
based NGO Basel Action has expressed concern that the
dismantling may present a safety hazard. A spokesman for
ERS said the company observes high security standards during
the dismantling process, adding that there is high demand in
developing countries for aged vessels' junk metal
components, boilers, and machines. The US Congress voted to
remove the vessels from their port in Virginia before the
end of 2006.

HRW Urges US to Destroy Cluster Bombs: New York-based Human
Rights Watch (HRW) urged the United States to destroy
`millions' of cluster bombs in its stockpile, "Yeni Safak"
reports. Bonnie Docherty of HRW said the cluster bombs
posed a great danger to civilians, and said they should
never be used.

Greek-Armenian Companies Cooperate in Nagorno-Karabakh:
"Milliyet" reports that a leading Greek telecommunications
company, Intrakom, will make investments worth 22.8 million
Euro in Nagorno Karabakh to support the Armenian mobile
phone operator Vivacell. A deal was signed between the two
companies on Tuesday. "Milliyet" sees the deal as a Greek
effort to retaliate against Azerbaijani moves aimed at
ending the international isolation of the Turkish Cypriots.

PKK Militants, Soldier Killed in Fighting in Van: Two PKK
militants and one Turkish soldier were killed on Thursday in
fighting in Turkey's eastern province of Van, near the
border with Iran, papers report. The PKK fighters
reportedly opened fire against a group of jandarma
patrolling a remote area in the province. Turkish forces
launched an operation in pursuit of the terrorists.


Gungor Mengi wrote in the mass appeal "Vatan" (7/22): "The
remarks of the London Mayor were very interesting, and they
serve to put Al-Qaeda terrorism into a context. After the
first bombings, Livingstone emphasized that the Middle East
policies pursued by western powers have caused an increase
in radical Islamists and helped Al-Qaeda to grow. A
rebellious soul who cries out against perceived injustice
and humiliation can easily end up turning to violence.
Ignoring this fact will bring more disasters. Yet it is
equally true that more disasters are ahead if there is no
change in the mentality that only terrorism can open the
eyes of modern societies. . Western countries are moving
toward a vicious circle. Their insecurity due to terrorism
has encouraged them to take even more rigid steps. In the
event that this insecurity results in a view that all
Muslims as potential terrorists, there will be more pressure
and more feeling of alienation. In that case, Al-Qaeda will
find it very easy to recruit new bombers. "

"The Fight Against Fundamentalism"
Erdal Safak noted in the mass appeal "Sabah" (7/22): "The
civilized world is on the verge of a crucial decision in the
fight against fanatical religious terror. The options are
either to carry out an armed struggle against the enemy, as
George Bush has proposed, or to eliminate the fundamentalist
elements in Islam, as suggested by Tony Blair. The second
option seems the right one, and it is the only way to
invalidate Samuel Huntington's theory on the `clash of
civilizations.' A long-term study with international
participation can invalidate this argument. If Blair
manages to convene such a conference, the essence of the
issue will become perfectly clear: this is a social crisis
in the Muslim world that has both cultural and economic
dimensions, but it is not a war of religions. The political
dimension of this issue includes the situations in
Palestine, Afghanistan, Chechnya, and Iraq. The cultural
dimension is about ongoing western efforts to impose their
values as global values. "

"Al Qaeda's Drive For Power "
Erdal Guven commented in the liberal-intellectual "Radikal"
(7/22): "The occupation of Iraq is only one of many reasons
for the increase in Al-Qaeda terrorism. The invasion of
Iraq alone cannot explain the al-Qaeda terror attacks in
London and other western cities. Al Qaeda is not looking
to achieve a well-defined and limited goal. . It will not
consider its job as done even if the US and UK completely
withdraw from the Middle East, including Iraq and
Afghanistan. On the contrary, al-Qaeda will then be able to
start its real job. If there is a withdrawal, Al-Qaeda will
start targeting Islamic regimes which it considers to be
antithetical to its extremist ideology. Al-Qaeda's struggle
is about power, and it started before 9/11. It reached its
peak on 9/11, and has continued to this day. Al-Qaeda
terror did not start with the occupation of Iraq, and will
not end if and when this occupation is terminated."


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