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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 02 ANKARA 006259

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
FRIDAY, OCTOBER 14, 2005

THIS REPORT PRESENTS THE TURKISH PRESS SUMMARY UNDER THREE
THEMES:

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

Friday, October 14, 2005
HEADLINES
MASS APPEAL
Anti-Turkey British Author Receives Nobel Prize - Sabah
Bloody Day in Caucasus -Sabah
Deadly Bird Flu Virus in Turkey - Milliyet
US Parliament Urges Erdogan to Drop Case against Orhan Pamuk
- Milliyet
Angela Merkel Extends `Olive Branch' to Turkey - Milliyet
Rice Invites TRNC President Talat to Washington - Hurriyet
Terror in Russia - Hurriyet
PKK Supporter Wins the Nobel Literature Prize - Posta
Bloody Raid of Chechens in Nalchik - Aksam
Invitation from US to Talat - Turkiye
Bird Flu Confirmed in Turkey - Star

OPINION MAKERS

Channel 7 Established with the Support of `Green Capital' -
Radikal
Suspicious Death of Syrian Interior Minister - Radikal
Chechen Terrorists' Bloody Attack - Cumhuriyet
Bird Flu Virus Proved Deadly - Yeni Safak
Oyak's French Partner Axa Offers Genocide Compensation to
Armenians - Zaman
Merkel Offers Friendship to Erdogan on the Way to EU - Zaman


BRIEFING

Avian Influenza Outbreak in Turkey: All papers and TV
stations extensively cover the bird flu outbreak in Turkey.
The World Organization for Animal Health confirmed that the
H5N1 virus was detected in sick birds in Turkey. H5N1 virus
is highly pathogenic and dangerous. EU Health and Consumer
Protection chief Kyprianou said at a press conference that
the EU should be prepared for a possible bird flu outbreak
and should stock medication. The EU issued a travel warning
for Turkey. International health experts warn that a global
flu pandemic could occur if the virus develops the
capability to pass among humans. Direct contact with
infected poultry or their droppings is considered the main
route to human infection. The Health Ministry announced
that all necessary measures had been taken to prevent the
spread of the deadly bird flu virus.

Secretary Rice Invites TRNC President Talat to Washington:

SIPDIS
"Hurriyet and "Turkiye" report that US Secretary of State
Condoleezza Rice has officially invited Turkish Republic of
Northern Cyprus (TRNC) president Mehmet Ali Talat to
Washington. The invitation was conveyed to Talat by Charge
d'Affaires Jane Zimmerman of the US Embassy in Nicosia. The
date for the visit has not yet been set. "Turkiye" reports
diplomatic sources as saying that this invitation would
encourage the moves to end the isolation of the TRNC.

Chechen Terrorist Attacks in Russia: Papers report that at
least 63 people died in Chechen terrorist attacks in the
southern Russian city of Nalchik. Around 600 terrorists
tried to take over government buildings and the airport in
Nalchik yesterday morning. Most of the attackers were
killed by security forces. "Milliyet" reports that Chechens
claimed responsibility for the terror attacks.

Syrian Interior Minister Committed Suicide: Syrian Interior
Minister Gazi Kanaan, who was questioned over former
Lebanese Premier Rafik Harriri's murder, committed suicide
in his Damascus office yesterday. The death of Kanaan comes
just days before the final UN investigation report on the
Harriri assassination is due.
Greek Cypriots Want Share in the Shipment of Baku-Ceyhan
Oil: "Yeni Safak" reports that the Greek Cypriots were
pressing for access to Turkish harbors and airports because
they wanted a share in the transportation of Azeri oil to
world markets.


EDITORIAL OPINION: Chancellor Merkel; Avian Flu

"The Merkel Era in Germany"
Kamuran Ozbir wrote in the nationalist "Ortadogu" (10/14):
"Merkel is going to be the first female Prime Minister in
German history. The world is eagerly watching to see her
performance in the German government; she is described by
some as `the iron lady' of Germany. .. In fact, Merkel had
to give some concessions to the SPD in order to assume the
prime minister's chair. The composition of the cabinet will
favor the SPD in number. The new government under Merkel's
leadership will have to deal with several issues, including
the rising rate of unemployment in Germany, the economic
slowdown, and Turkey's EU membership. The membership is a
thorny issue, particularly for the coalition members of the
government. The SPD is in favor of Turkey's full
membership, while Merkel's party is advocating privileged
partnership status for Turkey."

"No Need to Panic, But Let's Handle the Crisis"
Haluk Sahin wrote in the liberal-intellectual "Radikal"
(10/14): "The EU warning for its citizens about avian flu in
Turkey is a normal procedure, and we should not interpret
such warnings as a sign of being anti-Turkish. Had a
similar thing occurred in other countries, Turkey
undoubtedly would have taken the same precaution. There is
no need for panic, but we should acknowledge the existence
of a crisis, and act accordingly. We should immediately
establish a modern communication policy based on fairness
and clarity. China tried to hide SARS when it first erupted
two years ago, and this policy seriously damaged China's
international credibility. . It is no secret that some in
Europe have a feeling that Turkey may consider doing the
same. Instead of creating arguments to counter such
prejudice, we should take every necessary step to handle
this crisis and inform the entire world immediately."
MCELDOWNEY

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