US embassy cable - 02ANKARA8377

ANKARA MEDIA REACTION REPORT MONDAY, NOVEMBER 18, 2002

Identifier: 02ANKARA8377
Wikileaks: View 02ANKARA8377 at Wikileaks.org
Origin: Embassy Ankara
Created: 2002-11-18 14:21:00
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 008377 
 
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 
MONDAY, NOVEMBER 18, 2002 
 
 
THIS REPORT WILL PRESENT A TURKISH PRESS SUMMARY UNDER THREE 
THEMES: 
 
 
HEADLINES 
BRIEFING 
EDITORIAL OPINION 
                    ------- 
HEADLINES 
 
 
MASS APPEAL 
Erdogan finds Cyprus maps `ugly' - Hurriyet 
Simitis to lay `red carpet' for Erdogan - Hurriyet 
American press finds Gul warm, gentle - Milliyet 
Erdogan: Political bans will be removed in a month - 
Milliyet 11/17 
EU officials congratulate Gul - Sabah 
Erdogan: Full confidence in Gul - Aksam 
Erdogan: My political ban a torture - Turkiye 
AKP support to families on brink of hunger - Hurriyet 11/17 
Hijacking panic on Israeli plane - Vatan 
 
 
OPINION MAKERS 
Baykal: EU not well-intentioned - Cumhuriyet 
Erdogan: Cyprus problem must be resolved - Cumhuriyet 11/17 
Inspectors return to Baghdad - Radikal 
AKP will make fast start - Radikal 
Secret agents save Israeli plane - Zaman 
 
SIPDIS 
Council of Europe: Gul experienced statesman - Yeni Safak 
11/17 
AKP measures to lure back offshore money - Yeni Safak 
Pentagon's `Total Information Awareness' draws criticism - 
Cumhuriyet 11/17 
 
 
FINANCIAL JOURNALS 
Business world: AKP compromise with EU necessary - Dunya 
AKP wants transparency in public spending - Finansal Forum 
 
 
BRIEFING 
 
 
Cyprus: Papers report EU accession commissioner Verheugen's 
office reacting to AKP leader Erdogan's remarks that Turkey 
and Cyprus should simultaneously join the EU.  Monday's 
"Hurriyet" carries an exclusive interview with Erdogan, who 
is quoted as voicing displeasure with the maps offered in 
the UN-sponsored Cyprus plan.  Erdogan said that the UN was 
demanding too much in territorial concessions from the 
Turkish side, and stressed that the document needs 
adjustment with regard to land and sovereignty issues.  He 
welcomed the fact that the plan calls for a  partnership of 
two equal, sovereign states.  Hurriyet believes that Erdogan 
is determined to demonstrate a constructive approach on the 
Cyprus issue before the EU Copenhagen Summit in December. 
Turkish Cypriot leader Denktas has reportedly found 
inclusion of the maps in the plan a `mistake,' but has said 
that he will still go to the negotiating table. 
 
 
Erdogan: AKP leader Erdogan said he would not interfere with 
the authority of the Prime Minister, as the success of the 
new government would bring credit to the AKP.  Prime 
Minister-designate Gul said he did not expect problems to 
result from the arrangement.  Sunday papers believe that Gul 
will step down as Prime Minister once the parliament lifts 
the political ban on Erdogan.  CHP leader Baykal on Sunday 
welcomed the appointment of Gul as Prime Minister, but added 
that it would have been more appropriate to give the post to 
Erdogan himself.  Erdogan on Saturday unveiled the one-year 
emergency action plan for the new government: the IMF 
program will be reviewed,  public spending will be 
controlled under a single budget, and poor families will be 
provided financial aid.  Sunday's papers expect the AKP to 
outline a new privatization timetable.  The party vows to 
fight graft and corruption.  The new government will move to 
prevent torture, papers say. Dailies report a positive 
reaction from the business community to the action plan, 
though some pointed out that additional funds would be 
necessary to fulfill the ambitious promises by AKP. 
Monday's "Hurriyet" claims that the U.S. Administration kept 
its distance to Erdogan during his visit to Washington last 
January by denying him access to high-level officials. 
Before the elections, the U.S. Embassy in Ankara preferred 
to hold contacts with Gul instead of Erdogan, Hurriyet 
claims.  The paper speculates that the U.S. Administration 
was being careful not to former the former coalition 
government by forging closer ties with Erdogan. 
 
 
EU: AKP leader Erdogan will tour Greece and Spain in a day 
trip on Monday, papers report.  Erdogan will be given the 
`red carpet' treatment in Athens, where he will meet with 
Prime Minister Simitis to discuss Cyprus and the EU, reports 
say.  Accompanied by NGO leaders, Erdogan will proceed to 
Madrid in the afternoon to meet with Prime Minister Aznar. 
In an exclusive to Monday's "Cumhuriyet," CHP leader Baykal 
said that the EU's vision of Turkey should not be based 
merely on Cyprus and ESDP.  Baykal criticized what he viewed 
as the `ill intentions' of some in the EU who are now 
raising the issue of military-civilian relations as an 
obstacle to Turkey's gaining a date for accession talks. 
Baykal attended the European Socialists Party meetings in 
Warsaw over weekend, where EU expansion commissioner 
Verheugen complained to him about the influence of military 
in Turkish politics. 
 
 
 
 
EDITORIAL OPINION: 
The new Turkish government/U.S-Turkey Relations 
 
 
"New Prime Minister Gul and the Old Problem Cyprus" 
Yasemin Congar writes from Washington in mass appeal 
Milliyet (11/18): "The new prime minister, Abdullah Gul, is 
the best known AKP official in the US.  A US diplomat who 
previously served in Turkey tells me that Washington has 
noticed the moderate messages coming from Gul.  The US 
diplomat also adds that Abdullah Gul is seen here as a 
politician who wants a positive and constructive dialogue 
with the US.  . The US considers Gul a powerful figure in 
Turkish politics as well as in Turkish-US relations.  On the 
other hand, Washington is also convinced that a 
constitutional amendment to pave the way for Erdogan to 
become prime minister will increase Turkey's political 
stability.  Turkey must take a series of important decisions 
before Erdogan takes charge, and Washington believes that 
Abdullah Gul has a key role to play.  . In the eyes of 
Washington, there are two conflicting positions in Ankara on 
the Cyprus issue: one group wants a settlement on Cyprus, 
while another stands completely against a solution. 
Washington considers the no-solution approach as a potential 
danger, which will put an end Turkey's EU process. . 
Washington is very eager to see whether the new AKP 
government will really press for a settlement in Cyprus. The 
Washington administration will watch every step taken and 
every statement made by Ankara on this issue." 
 
 
"A View from Washington" 
Asli Aydintasbas writes from Washington in mass appeal Sabah 
(11/18): "The rhetoric pursued by AKP to this point has been 
a relief for Washington. The AKP's stated goal of becoming 
the Muslim version of the Christian Democrats sounds very 
attractive to the Bush administration, which currently is in 
trouble with Islamic countries. . The new Turkish prime 
minister is a well-known figure both in Washington's 
official circles and in international financial 
institutions.  He very much deserves to be called a Muslim 
Democrat, so the Americans depict the current situation in 
Turkey as `so far so good.'  . In addition, the recent visit 
of the Turkish Chief of General Staff increased optimism in 
Washington.  General Ozkok's statement on Cyprus and his 
approach in favor of a solution brought new relief to 
Washington following years of a `no solution is best' 
approach. . Nowadays, the Washington administration is 
looking forward to discussing the issues with Turkey's new 
government, particularly Iraq, Cyprus and the EU." 

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