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Cablegate: Ankara Media Reaction Report

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E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: OPRC KMDR TU
SUBJECT: ANKARA MEDIA REACTION REPORT
FRIDAY, AUGUST 17, 2007


In Today's Papers

Sezer Asks Erdogan to Submit Cabinet List to New President
All papers report Prime Minister Erdogan said on Thursday he was
delaying the announcement of his new cabinet lineup after outgoing
President Sezer refused to review it and asked the PM to hand the
list to the next head of state instead. Prime Minister Erdogan said
President Sezer's move, which came as a "surprise," had been a
positive "gesture." Erdogan said that some revisions might now be
made to the list. Main opposition CHP said what the President did
was both a "gesture" and "response" to the PM, recalling comments by
Erdogan earlier this week that he would not accept any objections to
the cabinet list from President Sezer.

Editorial Commentary on President Sezer's Action
Okay Gonensin writes in the mainstream daily Vatan: "President Sezer
has served as a genuine opposition leader to the AKP government
since 2002. He chose to execute his authority to supervise and
limit the government. The latest 'gesture' with the cabinet list is
in fact a serious blow to the government, maybe even the most
serious one up to now. His gesture meant that he gave a complete
refusal to the cabinet list. By acting this way, he avoided making
any effort toward consensus and reconciliation. Sezer has not taken
into account the wishes of people who want reconciliation - a group
not limited to those who voted for AKP. Time will tell whether he
did the right thing or not."

Buyukanit Declines Comment on Presidency
All papers report the chief of the Turkish General Staff (TGS)
General Yasar Buyukanit, at a reception at Presidential Palace on
Thursday, said in response to press questions on the presidency that
"everything that needs to be said has been said." "They say that
every time I speak up, the markets dive in Turkey. The same thing
happens if I don't speak at all. What should I do, do a handstand?"
said Buyukanit. The TGS Chief said that in previous remarks he has
only repeated what was written in the constitution, reiterating that
the military wants a president whose words would be echoed in his
conduct and attitude. On whether Abdullah Gul would be allowed to
attend the military-hosted August 30 reception with his wife,
Buyukanit said, "Our principles are clear. We will not fight with
anyone, but neither will we leave aside those principles," implying
that the reception venue rules forbidding the wearing of the
headscarf would not be waived.

Turkish Stock Market Takes a Dive
All papers report that the sharp decline at US stock exchanges has
negatively affected the world markets, including that of Turkey.
The stock market in Turkey had its fastest decline in the last four
years and lost 6.7 percent. The Turkish currency dropped to its
lowest level since March 14, falling 5.1 percent, the most of any
currency against the dollar. The US Dollar reached 1.415 YTL, its
highest level since March.

Ocalan's Prison Conditions to be Raised in Parliament
Sabah, Radikal, Cumhuriyet: During a conversation with journalists
yesterday, Nurettin Demirtas, the deputy chairman of the Democratic
Society Party (DTP), said that the party would bring jailed PKK
leader Abdullah Ocalan's living conditions in Imrali Prison to the
agenda of the Parliament. Demirtas claimed that Ocalan has been
living under inhumane conditions in a cell in Imrali. Demirtas
added that his party will also bring the Ilisu Dam Project and the
issue of forest fires in the southeast to the Parliamentary agenda.
He was quoted as saying that "military operations are launched in
the southeast almost everyday. The forests have been set on fire
with the excuse that they are security precautions. The forest
fires in Mardin, Hakkari, Sirnak and Dersim still continue because
fire fighting is being prevented in these areas."

Editorial Commentary on US Stance on Iranian Republican Guard
Kubilay Celik writes in the nationalist daily Tercuman: "How could

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the US declare a country's army a terrorist organization? This is
kind of act is very hard to understand. Nevertheless, the US
administration has just accomplished another 'first' in the world by
announcing that the Iranian army is a terrorist organization. That
means the Iranian army, from now on, will be treated as equal to
Hamas, the PKK or al-Qaeda. President Bush is on his way to
finishing his second and last term, and his performance during his
tenure justifies the label 'terminator.' He made the US
unsympathetic to all, with the UK being the only exception. With so
many troubles and enemies, creating new tension should be the last
thing the US does. Despite this fact, President Bush, instead of
giving some positive messages to the world before his term ends, is
working toward creating new conflicts, such as calling the Iranian
army terrorists. The fact of the matter is that President Bush is
handing over a world filled with fears and enemies to his
successor."

TV Highlights
NTV, 7.00 A.M.

Domestic News

- On August 17, Turkey marks the eighth anniversary of a devastating
earthquake that left an estimated 18,000 dead and caused massive
damage across much of the northwestern provinces.

- President Sezer has honored businessman Jak Kamhi at the
Presidential Palace with the state medal of merit for "his
meritorious services at home and abroad."

- The Greek Orthodox Patriarchate in Istanbul has applied to the
European Court of Human Rights against Turkey for transferring the
deed of an immovable asset in Buyukada to the Greek Orphanage
Foundation. The asset was bought by the Patriarchate for 246,650
British Pounds in 1902.

- The number of foreigners choosing to settle in Turkey's
Mediterranean coastal city of Antalya has reached 13,225. Antalya
has hosted around 8 million tourists this year.

International News

- An unidentified Turkish official told Israeli daily Ha'aretz that
Ankara did not break ties with Hamas despite objections from Israel
and the US. Ankara thinks Washington's policy of seeing Iran,
Syria, and Hamas on the same side pushes Syria and Hamas closer to
Iran.

- The Greek government has said early general elections will be held
September 16. Prime Minister Karamanlis' New Democracy Party leads
a slight margin ahead of the opposition socialists.

- The Shiites and Kurds have set up a new alliance in an effort to
end the political bottleneck in Iraq. President Talabani and Prime
Minister Maliki said they keep their doors open to the Sunni groups
who have rejected joining the bloc.

- Kurdish leader Massoud Barzani said the attacks which killed some
400 Yezidis in Ninova province in northern Iraq aimed at seeing the
Kurds leave their homes. Barzani added Kurdish security forces
should be sent to the region to protect the Yezidis.

MCELDOWNEY

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
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