Cablegate: Southeast Turkey Press Summary for August 03, 2006
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SUBJECT: SOUTHEAST TURKEY PRESS SUMMARY FOR AUGUST 03, 2006
This is the Southeastern Turkey press summary for August 03,
2006. Please note that Turkish press reports often contain
errors or exaggerations; AmConsulate Adana does not vouch for
the accuracy of the reports summarized here.
POLITICAL, SECURITY, HUMAN RIGHTS
BOLGE: Eric Green, the new U.S. Consul in Adana, paid a
visit to the Mayor of Adana to introduce himself. Mr. Green
apologized for his visit being delayed because of the evacuation
process of the U.S. citizens and families from Lebanon. Mr.
Green extended deepest thanks to the mayor in response to
Adana's help during the humanitarian process which "reinforced
friendship between Turkey and the U.S."
BOLGE / EVRENSEL: The dailies point out the continuing military
deployments of Turkey in the border area, and report at the same
time the ongoing meetings between Turkey, U.S. and Iraq on how
to dissolve the PKK in northern Iraq. Bolge daily notes that
the so-called flag of the PKK and KDP (Kurdistan Democratic
Party) were still on a mast side by side in Kirkuk.
CUMHURIYET / RADIKAL / EVRENSEL / OZGUR GUNDEM / SABAH: The
dailies report that Necirvan Barzani, head of the regional
authority in northern Iraq, allegedly cautioned Murat Karayilan,
a senior PKK leader, during a meeting in Arbil last week, not to
use his territory as a base for assaults against Turkey. Sabah
daily reports that, when Karayilan responded negatively, Barzani
closed all PKK offices in the region. Sabah and Ozgur Gundem
dailies cite State Department Spokesperson McCormack as saying
that everybody was working to resolve the issue about PKK's
presence in the northern Iraq in order to prevent a possible
Turkish incursion there.
HURRIYET: The daily reports the allegations that Karayilan
would be handed over to Turkey. Kurdistan Democratic Party's
(KDP) official reportedly came to Turkey to discuss that issue.
However, Turkish Foreign Ministry spokesman dismissed such
allegations and said that KDP official were paying visits to
Turkey for other reasons.
OZGUR GUNDEM: Yesterday morning numerous military units and
vehicles were transferred via Sirnak's Cizre district to the
border area. New tanks have also reportedly been deployed in
the Cizre's Tank Battalion.
EVRENSEL / RADIKAL: Explosive placed on a railroad in
Erzincan's Ilici district has been detonated as a cargo train
was passing. Material damage has been reported on one of the
SABAH: Five PKK terrorists have surrendered to the security
officers with their arms in Sirnak on August 1, announced Sirnak
HURRIYET: Van Prosecutor Sezgin Kanmaz appealed the court
verdict concerning the Semdinli case in favor of the defendants.
Two non-commissioned officers were sentenced to 39 years in
prison (see press summary 06/21). The prosecutor claimed that
the investigation process was incomplete and defendants did not
satisfactorily have an opportunity to defend themselves.
EVRENSEL / OZGUR GUNDEM: Members of the Initiative for
Hasankeyf's Survival requested an appointment with PM Erdogan
ahead of the August 5 ground breaking ceremony of the Ilisu Dam
Project which will submerge historic Hasankeyf (in Batman) under
dam waters. Meanwhile, a tent will be set up in Hasankeyf and
people against the dam project will be on duty all through the
OZGUR GUNDEM: The daily dubbed it "a suicide in the name of
honor" when a young man in Diyarbakir shot himself in the
forehead when his wife gave birth to a child two months after
their religious marriage. (Note:Religious marriage is a
phenomenon not legally recognized in Turkey, but it is a common
practice in many parts of the country. End Note.)
OZGUR GUNDEM: A court of first instance ordered a 15,000 YTL
fine on a local weekly newspaper called Araratin Sesi (Voice of
Ararat) in Agri's Dogubeyazit district for two separate reports,
namely, one about the anniversary of PKK's foundation and the
other about a signature campaign in support for Abdullah Ocalan.