US embassy cable - 02ANKARA7743

ANKARA MEDIA REACTION REPORT FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 1, 2002

Identifier: 02ANKARA7743
Wikileaks: View 02ANKARA7743 at Wikileaks.org
Origin: Embassy Ankara
Created: 2002-11-01 12:43:00
Classification: UNCLASSIFIED
Tags: OPRC KMDR TU Press Summaries
Redacted: This cable was not redacted by Wikileaks.
This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 03 ANKARA 007743 
 
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, Press Summaries 
SUBJECT: ANKARA MEDIA REACTION REPORT 
FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 1, 2002 
 
THIS REPORT WILL PRESENT A TURKISH PRESS SUMMARY UNDER THREE 
THEMES: 
 
 
HEADLINES 
BRIEFING 
EDITORIAL OPINION 
                    ------- 
HEADLINES 
 
 
MASS APPEAL 
AKP candidates lobby for Prime Minister post - Milliyet 
Calling card shock - Hurriyet 
Erdogan's day of destiny - Hurriyet 
U.S. State Dept. against party closure - Turkiye 
Ecevit: Secularism jeopardized if AKP in power - Sabah 
World eyes on Turkish polls - Vatan 
 
 
OPINION MAKERS 
EU accession date depends on torture prevention - Cumhuriyet 
Ankara to give counter dipnote to Moscow - Cumhuriyet 
Election Board: Court's ruling on Erdogan won't affect polls 
- Zaman 
Human Rights Watch to issue `head cover' report after polls 
- Yeni Safak 
 
 
FINANCIAL JOURNALS 
Treasury U/S: Economic program going well - Dunya 
Turkish businessmen to continue textile lobby in U.S. - 
Finansal Forum 
 
 
BRIEFING 
 
 
EU troika: Officials from EU president Denmark, next-term 
president Greece, and the EU Commission, in Ankara for talks 
with Turkish officials, praised moves for reform and urged 
continued effort on implementation of regulations against 
torture.  Ankara stressed that it would not accept 
conditions for an accession date, and added that Turkish 
support for a possible operation against Iraq should not be 
taken for granted.  MFA Spokesman Buluc said Turkey hoped to 
begin accession negotiations with the EU in 2003.  "Radikal" 
claims that Ankara hinted at an EU compromise on the issue 
of the European defense mechanism. 
 
 
Cyprus: UN Cyprus envoy De Soto said after meeting MFA U/S 
Amb. Ziyal on Thursday that he hoped to see the Cyprus 
problem resolved before the EU Copenhagen Summit in 
December.  De Soto denied reports that Annan would present 
the Turkish and Greek Cypriots a new plan for peace.  The 
MFA praised Annan's `good will mission,' but urged him not 
to interfere in direct talks between the two sides. 
 
 
Papandreou in Istanbul: Greek Foreign Minister Papandreou 
met in Istanbul with his Turkish counterpart Gurel to watch 
the soccer game between Istanbul's Fenerbahce and Athens' 
Panathinaikos.  Papandreou told the press that he backed the 
UN attempt to resolve the Cyprus issue, and reiterated 
support for Turkey's EU bid.  Accompanied by the 
Panathinaikos soccer team, Papandreou paid a visit to the 
Fener Greek Patriarch Bartholomeos before the game. 
Bartholomeos voiced hope that the new Turkish government 
would contribute to the friendly atmosphere between Greece 
and Turkey. 
 
 
MFA on Chechens: Dailies claim Ankara was preparing a note 
of protest to Moscow in order to reject allegations 
regarding the presence of Chechen organizations in Turkey. 
MFA Spokesman Buluc said on Thursday that there was no 
`Chechen-Ichkeria organization' in Turkey.  However, a CNN- 
Turk reporter showed Buluc a business card from a member of 
the organization.  Buluc did not take this seriously, 
pointing out that anybody could print a business card. 
Turkey's Ambassador to Moscow Kurtulus Taskent said that any 
outlawed Chechen organization raising money in Turkey would 
be closed, and added that Turkey was ready for cooperation 
with Russia in the fight against terror. 
 
 
Election: The AKP leadership toned down criticism against 
President Sezer, and recognized that the presidency has the 
ultimate authority to appoint a new Prime Minister.  Papers 
claim that after Erdogan was barred from taking office, a 
heated rivalry has erupted among possible AKP candidates 
Abdullah Gul, Bulent Arinc and Abdullatif Sener for the post 
of Prime Minister.  DSP leader Ecevit accused AKP of hiding 
its true intentions, and said that Turkish secularism might 
be damaged if AKP came to power.  Ecevit told "Milliyet" 
that he would leave DSP leadership within a year.  The 
Constitutional Court is to decide on the injunction against 
Erdogan today.  If the high court upholds the injunction, 
Erdogan will have to step down as AKP chairman.  The High 
Election Board (YSK) said the name of Erdogan appearing on 
election ballot will not lead to an annulment of ballots. 
Papers report State Spokesman Boucher's response to a 
question, saying that the U.S. was against the closure of 
political parties for the peaceful expression of their 
views. 
 
 
 
 
EDITORIAL OPINION 
 
 
a) Terrorism/Turkey-Russia 
b) Turkey-EU 
 
 
"Russia is right" 
Fatih Altayli commented on the recent tiff between Turkey 
and Russia over Chechen terrorists in the mass appeal 
"Hurriyet" (11/1): "Chechen behavior has served to justify 
the Russian depiction of Chechens as `terrorists.'  Russia 
is also accusing Turkey of supporting the Chechens.  There 
is no `state policy' to support Chechens, yet we should 
acknowledge that Turkey has presented a negative picture. . 
If we look at Belgian support for the DHKP-C, for example, 
Belgium can also claim that it does not have a state policy 
to support this terrorist organization.  At the same time, 
Belgium does not interfere when DHKP-C gets organized in the 
country and is involved in illegal acts against Turkey, 
including terrorism. . There is simply no difference between 
what Belgium is doing to Turkey and what Turkey is doing to 
Russia.  The Chechen groups are terrorists for Russia as 
much as the PKK or DHKP-C are terrorists for Turkey.  Russia 
is right to criticize Turkey.  Tolerance and friendly 
feelings do not mean supporting, or even ignoring, 
terrorism." 
 
 
"Minds are even more confused!" 
Sami Kohen commented on Turkey's EU prospects in the mass 
appeal Milliyet (11/1): "It looks like the upcoming EU 
summit will do its best not to send Turkey home empty- 
handed.  The chances that Turkey will be given a clear and 
firm date for negotiations are nil.  However, we might 
expect `something like a calendar,' such as a conditional 
negotiation date.  The EU conditions will not be new, but 
rather a series of expectations that Turkey fulfill all of 
its current obligations, particularly in the area of human 
rights and freedoms. . Let's hope that the Copenhagen summit 
reaches such a decision.  If that happens, it is quite 
possible that Turkey would begin the negotiations with the 
EU during the Greek chairmanship. . Turkey should not sit 
and wait.  As soon as a decision is given toward Turkey's 
negotiation process, we have a lot to accomplish.  I hope by 
that time Turkey has a new government with the EU issue as 
one of its priorities." 

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