US embassy cable - 02ANKARA7919

ANKARA MEDIA REACTION REPORT TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 5, 2002

Identifier: 02ANKARA7919
Wikileaks: View 02ANKARA7919 at Wikileaks.org
Origin: Embassy Ankara
Created: 2002-11-05 14:38:00
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 04 ANKARA 007919 
 
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 
TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 5, 2002 
 
THIS REPORT WILL PRESENT A TURKISH PRESS SUMMARY UNDER THREE 
THEMES: 
 
 
HEADLINES 
BRIEFING 
EDITORIAL OPINION 
                    ------- 
HEADLINES 
 
 
MASS APPEAL 
Erdogan: No weak, caretaker PM - Hurriyet 
Erdogan invites Baykal to work together for EU - Milliyet 
Markets, EU give AKP vote of confidence - Sabah 
U.S. congratulates, EU ready for cooperation - Turkiye 
U.S., EU to AKP: Ready to cooperate - Aksam 
Moderate messages boost markets - Vatan 
 
 
OPINION MAKERS 
World optimistic, EU on stand-by - Radikal 
Erdogan on EU: No time to lose - Zaman 
Markets issue AKP vote of confidence - Zaman 
West questions AKP: Islamist government - Cumhuriyet 
Bye-bye to old leaders - Yeni Safak 
 
 
FINANCIAL JOURNALS 
Business world extends credit to AKP -- Dunya 
International rating firms prefer wait-and-see - Finansal 
Forum 
 
 
BRIEFING 
 
 
Erdogan: AKP leader Erdogan has accepted an invitation by 
Greek Prime Minister Simitis to visit Greece within the next 
week, according to a party statement.  Erdogan reportedly 
told Simitis that cooperation with Greece would have a 
positive impact on Turkey's relations with the EU.  EU 
accession seems to be Erdogan's top priority, and he is 
expected to begin a European tour within ten days, papers 
note.  Meanwhile, dailies speculate that Abdullah Gul, who 
is supported by the party's grassroots and well known 
abroad, is the most likely figure to emerge as Prime 
Minister.  Abdulkadir Aksu, a former ANAP member and a 
minister during the Ozal's era, is seen as another good 
candidate.  Bulent Arinc, a hard-liner on certain sensitive 
issues such as the headscarf, has the support of Islamists 
and is viewed as another possible candidate.  Koksal Toptan, 
who left DYP to join AKP just before the election, might be 
chosen to show that AKP has indeed moved to the center 
right, papers speculate.  On the other hand, papers report 
that CHP leader Baykal, leader of the parliamentary 
opposition, has extended an olive branch to Erdogan by 
saying he is ready to help AKP to abolish the political ban 
on Erdogan. 
 
 
Markets; business community: Dailies report that the markets 
reacted positively to AKP's election victory - the stock 
exchange rose by 6.1 percent, and the Turkish Lira 
strengthened against the Dollar.  Turkish Union of Chambers 
(TOBB) Chairman Hisarciklioglu welcomed the single-party 
government, and added that from now on politicians would 
have no excuses for not implementing economic and political 
decisions.  Ali Coskun, AKP deputy chairman for the economy, 
said that legal regulations for meeting IMF demands would be 
passed by the parliament.  IMF Turkey Desk Chief Kahkonen 
said that the outcome of the fourth review would depend on 
the attitude of the new government.  IMF Spokesman Conny 
Lotze welcomed AKP messages supporting the IMF-sponsored 
economic stability program.  Fitch Ratings said on Monday 
that it has maintained Turkey's B rating after the election. 
 
 
Defeated leaders to quit: Following the decision of MHP 
leader Bahceli to quit politics, ANAP leader Mesut Yilmaz 
said on Monday that he would step down from party leadership 
and leave active politics in December at an extraordinary 
party congress.   DYP leader Tansu Ciller also announced 
that she would leave the party leadership.  A decade-long 
rivalry between the leaders of the two center-right parties 
has brought about the end of each, reports comment.  Prime 
Minister Ecevit on Monday presented his resignation to 
President Sezer.  Ecevit will remain in office until a new 
government is formed. 
 
 
International reaction to Turkey's polls:  All papers report 
that State Department Spokesman Boucher congratulated AKP 
for its election victory, and urged the coming government to 
continue political and economic reforms, and to make efforts 
to solve the Cyprus problem.  Assistant SecState Grossman, 
following his meeting with Greek Foreign Minister Papandreou 
in Athens, said that Turkey is a NATO ally and a democratic 
country, and that the U.S. is ready to work with the new 
government.  The Greek Foreign Ministry voiced hope that the 
new Turkish government would enhance Turkey's EU entry bid. 
British Prime Minister Blair has welcomed the election 
victory of AKP.  The German government welcomed AKP's vow to 
continue with the EU accession drive, and asked for 
continued cooperation with the IMF.  The EU Commission 
expects Turkey to meet EU criteria.  EU foreign policy chief 
Solana said that the Turkish people have opted for democracy 
and welfare.  EU expansion commissioner Verheugen's office 
said that the EU is not biased toward the new government, 
but would wait to see concrete actions.  Verheugen called on 
the new government to prevent torture, and to release people 
jailed for non-violent expression of opinion.  Verheugen 
noted that the former pro-Kurdish parliamentarian Leyla Zana 
is still in prison, and stressed that the EU Commission and 
EU Parliament were sensitive about this issue. 
 
 
TGS Chief in U.S.: Head of TGS General Ozkok has begun 
meetings in the U.S., `at a time Washington is busy drafting 
war plans about Iraq,' "Radikal" reports.  During his five- 
day stay in the U.S., Ozkok and his delegation will meet 
with high-level Defense, State and White House officials, 
reports say.  The Iraqi operation will be the top priority 
at the meetings, in which bilateral military cooperation and 
regional developments will also be discussed. 
 
 
EDITORIAL OPINION: Turkish Elections 
 
 
"The Landslide Election" 
Cengiz Candar wrote in the Islamic-intellectual Yeni Safak 
(11/5): "The collapse of the center-right and center-left 
does not necessarily take us to a radical environment.  On 
the contrary, the AKP victory indicates that `the radical 
environment' is moving towards the center.  The Turkish 
people's message to AKP is this: We do not consider you the 
continuation of RP or FP [the two former pro-Islamic 
parties].  The AKP's 35 percent electoral support should be 
interpreted in this way. . It seems that the AKP has got the 
message right, which can be seen in senior AKP officials' 
statements. . Turkey has left  `old-fashioned politics' 
behind.  Turkey will not be a paradise for corruption any 
more.  The November 3 elections represented a political 
earthquake, and more will follow, it seems." 
 
 
"Opportunities Before the AKP" 
Sami Kohen wrote in the mass appeal Milliyet (11/5): 
"Western diplomats hope that the AKP will not get involved 
in `adventures', i.e. changing the direction of Turkish 
diplomacy.  As a matter of fact, I do not see that this is 
going to happen.  I believe the AKP government will preserve 
the ongoing trends of Turkish diplomacy.  This is actually 
dictated by Turkey's geographical location as well as by 
international circumstances.  The new Turkish government 
will have to make very important decisions on foreign 
issues, and the conditions will force AKP to take courageous 
steps.  That is a double chance for the AKP government; to 
prove its maturity as well as to pave the way for Turkey's 
progress." 
 
 
"AKP and CHP to the EU Capitals Together" 
Taha Akyol highlights the enhanced cooperation for the EU in 
the mass appeal Milliyet (11/5): "Even before the elections, 
AKP leader Erdogan had requested that EU ambassadors in 
Ankara arrange for him to meet with their Prime Ministers. 
Right after the election results were announced, we see some 
concrete developments in this area.  Erdogan will first 
visit Greece, and there is also a positive response from 
Italy.  The AKP leader is waiting for an appointment from 
the German Prime Minister.  . The determination of AKP to 
intensify its efforts for EU accession is also a positive 
sign for the stability of the economy, not to mention that 
it eliminates some worries or pre-conceived ideas about the 
AKP.  . Erdogan will also ask CHP leader Deniz Baykal for 
support in the EU shuttle diplomacy.  He might even ask CHP 
to provide a group to join the AKP delegations during its 
visits to Europe, or ask CHP to conduct some of the EU 
visits.  It is a good thing that Erdogan is seeking 
cooperation with CHP without any prejudices. . Erdogan's 
method of politics actually reminds me of the late Prime 
Minister Ozal and his golden years in politics between 1984 
and 1987.  AKP leader Erdogan is acting with maturity and a 
sense of responsibility. Thus he must be given a chance to 
prove himself." 

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