Cablegate: Southeast Turkey Press Summary for August 01 -03, 2007

DE RUEHDA #0102/01 2180737
R 060737Z AUG 07




E.O. 12958: N/A

1. This is the Southeastern Turkey press summary for August
01-03, 2007. Please note that Turkish press reports often
contain errors or exaggerations; AmConsulate Adana does not
vouch for the accuracy of the reports summarized here.


2. GUNDEM: The DTP-supported parliamentarian
candidate from Hakkari, Sabahattin Suvagci, who had
applied to the High Election Board of Hakkari to annul the
election in Hakkari for fraud, is taking his case to the
European Human Rights Court.

3. ZAMAN/EKSPRES/SABAH GUNEY: The Adana American Consul, Eric
F. Green, who visited the Justice and Development Party (AKP)
Provincial Chair to congratulate him for the success his party
achieved in the July 22 General Elections, said that AKP got 2
or 3 points above his guesses. The Adana AKP Provincial
Chairman, Mustafa Attaroglu, said that almost 50 percent of
voters cast their votes in favor of them, and that his party
produced 6 deputies from Adana, which was traditionally known as
the leftists' and the National Movement Party's (MHP)stronghold.
Attaroglu said that everybody should be respectful to the
results of the election and pointed out that the AKP
government's priorities would be to fight unemployment and
terrorism. Attaroglu added that per capita income had increased
from 2,500 US dollars to approximately 6,000 US dollars and that
his party aimed to increase it to 10.000 US dollars. Attaroglu
said when we achieve this target, most of the problems that
Turkey is faced with today would diminish.

4. EVRENSEL/GUNDEM: Regarding the charges and cases brought
against the mayor of Sur district of Diyarbakir, Abdullah
Demirbas, for introducing multilingualism and multiculturalism
in municipal services, the famed Kurdish writer, Mehmet Uzun,
said pressing such charges was a humanitarian crime and had
nothing to do with judiciary and commented that it was a
continuation of the state's traditional assimilation policy
towards Kurds. Writer Uzun said that language was the honor of
people, and encouraged all Kurds to use Kurdish in all walks of
life and to protect and promote their culture. Uzun emphasized
that Kurds should take such antidemocratic decisions and
applications to the European Union and to the Justice Council of
the European Parliament.

5. SABAH: The Turkish Railway Administration, (TCDD),
received bids for selling 850 acres (3,400,000 square meters) of
coastal land on the Mediterranean Dortyol district in Hatay
province. Kurdish origin President of the Gaziantep Soccer Team
and owner of the Kizil Group Company [provides oil for the
coalition forces in Iraq], Ibrahim Kizil, offered the highest
bid: 125,250,000 US dollars for the land on April 12. Based on
rumors that Kizil had given the bid on behalf of the Leader of
Kurds in Northern Iraq, Mesoud Barzani, and assessment of the
issue by other state organs as to the sensitivity of that
region, TCDD suspended the tender.


6. GUNDEM: Police arrested 8 persons in Sirnak on charges of
shouting illegal slogans during the June 30 funeral ceremony in
Cizre of the former Kurdish politician, Orhan Dogan, who died as
a result of a stroke. The detainees are being held at the Cizre
Security Directorate. The police raiding the houses and
businesses that belonged to the Democratic Society Party (DTP)
supporters in Antalya detained 4 persons, including the
provincial accountant of DTP.

7. GUNDEM: 14 PKK defendants in the E-Type Indoor Prison of
Malatya, who had sent petitions to the Justice Ministry and used
the honorific title "Mr. Ocalan," in order to draw attention to
his health condition, have been given 2 months of imprisonment.
The inmates' attorney, Hasan Dogan, said that they would appeal
the decision. It is also reported that the prison administration
has not been delivering the Kurdish-language daily newspaper
"Azadiya Welat" on the grounds that the administration does not
have a translator and that the inmates would be given the
newspaper if they paid for the translator's fee.

clashes between GOT forces and PKK militants in the rural
Cemisgezek and Hozat districts of Tunceli one soldier who had
been wounded was taken to the Military Hospital in Elazig by a
helicopter. The Zaman newspaper reported that PKK had a group of

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250 militants who were constantly on the move to change their
locations. Hurriyet and Sabah newspapers reported that 3
soldiers and 5 militants were killed while 1 soldier was wounded.

9. RADIKAL: The National President of the Human Rights
Association of Turkey, Reyhan Yalcindag, said yesterday that
inmates at the H-type prison in Erzurum were subjected to
inhumane treatment. Yalcindag said that when Erdal Ozdemir was
taken to the hearing at the Erzurum Criminial Court he was
insulted and cursed at by judicial employees and that when he
complained about it to the prison commander he was beaten for
hours by two soldiers. Ozdemir was taken to his ward without
being taken to a doctor. Yalcindag said that the HRA had
undertaken action to initiate judicial and administrative

10. GUNDEM: Police arrested nine youth in Uludere district of
Sirnak for shouting illegal slogans during the opening of the
DTP-supported parliamentary candidates' election office on July

11. GUNDEM: After their arraignment in Baskale district of
Van, Ayhan Seven and Ozgur Turan have been imprisoned for making
propaganda of an illegal organization. Seven and Turan were
interrogated by police for chanting illegal slogans during the
independent candidates' meeting in Baskale.

HURRIYET/ZAMAN: PKK militants killed 3 soldiers and wounded 7
soldiers in an ambush in the rural Tunceli. The wounded soldiers
have been taken to the military hospital in Elazig for
treatment. 6 PKK militants have been killed in the ensuing
clashes. It is claimed that the US make M-16 weapons were found
on the militants. The GOT forces launched an operation with
5,000 soldiers in the Tunceli, Ovacik, Hozat, and Cemisgezek

13. SABAH: As a result of explosion of a remote-controlled PKK
mine, 1 soldier was wounded in Uludere of Sirnak. The Turkish
General Staff announced on its web site that one PKK militant
was found dead during the GOT forces' search in the rural Bitlis.

14. YENI SAFAK/EKSPRES/BOLGE: Hatice Arat, the PKK's suicide
bomber, who was arrested in Adana with 9.750 kilos of
explosives, two hand grenades and 14 electric fuses on April 12
has been sentenced to 39.5 years of imprisonment by the 8th
Felony Court of Adana on charges of "membership to an illegal
organization, possessing dangerous materials without permission,
and forgery."

15. GUNDEM: Eyup Dogan, who was trying to go from Kiziltepe
district of Mardin to his home in Viransehir district of
Sanliurfa stopped a minibus for a ride. 10 policemen in
disguise, who got out of the minibus, started cursing and
beating Mr. Dogan. Dogan was kept under observation at the
Kiziltepe State Hospital and was issued a medical report
indicating that he had suffered from strokes in the head and
stomach and had bruises. Dogan reported the incident to the
Mardin Chapter of the Human Rigts Association and filed charges
with the Chief Public Prosecutor of Kiziltepe.

16. GUNDEM: Despite 6 months have passed over detention of the
Democratic Society Party's (DTP) Van Provincial Chairman,
Ibrahim Sungar, and Abdulvahap Turhan, the speaker of DTP's
Youth Organization, the public prosecutor has not prepared the
indictment yet. Sungar and Turhan had been detained by police on
February 19 and are charged with membership to an illegal

17. CUMHURIYET: The Dogu Haber Ajansi (DHA) [Eastern news
Agency] reporters from Diyarbakir, Ramazan Yavuz and Ramazan
Imrag, who had gone to Cizre district in Sirnak province to
cover the demonstrations protesting dismissal from his post and
arrest of the Cizre Mayor Aydin Budak three months ago are
facing three years of imprisonment on charges of "opposing the
anti-terror law" for citing some of the slogans chanted by
demonstrators, such as: "Cizre will become a graveyard for the
prosecutor; Greetings, greetings, thousands of greetings to
Imrali [where Abdullah Ocalan is imprisoned]." The hearing of
the Dicle News Agency's reporters from Sirnak, Faysal Tunc and
Behdin Tunc, and the deliverer of the Gundem newspaper, Sabri
Adanir, who are accused of "assisting an illegal organization
willingly and deliberately," was adjourned to another date by
the 5th Felony Court of Diyarbakir yesterday.

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18. CUKUROVA HURRYET: Jandarma arrested 3,900 kilos of sugar
in Albayrak village of Baskale district of Van. It is believed
that the sugar had been smuggled from Iran.

19. CUKUROVA HURRIYET/SABAH GUNEY: GOT forces seized a total
of 45 kilos of hashish and 160 hemp roots in Diyarbakir during
the operations in the last week. 7 of 12 persons detained for
connections with drugs were imprisoned.


20. GUNDEM: Bayram Kara, the Batman Regional Director of the
Turkish Petroleum Company (TPAO), said that TPAO had drilled 25
wells along the Turkish-Syrian border since 2005 and produced
2,500 barrels of oil from 21 wells daily. Kara said that TPAO
aimed to drill 40 wells and added that it produced 20,000
barrels from 570 wells in Batman region daily.

21. CUMHURIYET/EVRENSEL: A delegation of ten Italians, who are
members of various non-governmental organizations in Italy,
visited the historic Hasankeyf site in Batman province. The
delegation also paid a visit to the Mayor of Hasankeyf,
Abdulvahap Kusen, to find out what could be done to rescue the
town which will submerge under the reservoir of the Ilisu Dam
that will be built over Tigris river.

22. CUMHURIYET/SABAH GUNEY: In Tarsus district of Mersin, the
Mersin Governor Huseyin Aksoy said at a meeting attended by the
sub-governor of Tarsus, the Provincial Tourism Director and
presidents of many non-governmental organizations that Vatican
and the Pope had declared the year 2008 as the "Saint Paul's
Year" and that he therefore expected thousands of tourists to
visit St. Paul's birthplace in Tarsus.

23. EVRENSEL: In order to protest the plan to construct a dam
over the Munzur River -a tributary of the Euphrates- in Tunceli,
20 domestic and international cyclists will ride their bikes
from Ankara to Tunceli on August 9, covering 950 kilometers. The
bikers will set off with the "We are cycling to Munzur to drink
a cup of water from Munzur." The cyclists will participate in
the 7th Munzur Nature and Culture Festival starting on August 9
in Tunceli.

© Scoop Media

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