US embassy cable - 02ANKARA8474

ANKARA MEDIA REACTION REPORT WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 20, 2002

Identifier: 02ANKARA8474
Wikileaks: View 02ANKARA8474 at Wikileaks.org
Origin: Embassy Ankara
Created: 2002-11-20 14:05:00
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 008474 
 
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 
WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 20, 2002 
 
FOLLOWING REPORT WILL PRESENT A MEDIA REACTION SUMMARY UNDER 
THREE THEMES: 
 
 
HEADLINES 
BRIEFING 
EDITORIAL OPINION 
 
 
                    ------- 
HEADLINES 
 
 
MASS APPEALS 
Sezer will meet with Bush today - Hurriyet 
Erdogan: We will join the EU in eight years - Hurriyet 
Tense atmosphere in Germany - Sabah 
PM Gul: Lets forget about February 28 - Milliyet 
New government takes over - All papers 
Bush invites Gul to the U.S. - Sabah 
Weston feels pulse in Ankara - Aksam 
 
 
OPINION MAKERS 
Sezer will be meeting with Bush - Zaman 
Erdogan couldn't get support in Germany - Cumhuriyet 
FM Yakis: We can make concessions for Cyprus and ESDP - 
Cumhuriyet 
The Washington Post: Iraq bargaining between Turkey-U.S. - 
Cumhuriyet 
 
 
BRIEFING 
 
 
Sezer-Bush: "Hurriyet" and "Cumhuriyet" have extensive 
coverage of the Sezer-Bush meeting, which will take place 
today in Prague.  The Cyprus issue, Turkey's EU membership, 
Iraq, NATO expansion, and bilateral relations are on the 
Presidents' agenda.  On the eve of his Prague trip, 
President Sezer was briefed by high-level Foreign Ministry 
officials on the key issues of Turkish foreign policy 
including  Cyprus, Iraq and the EU.  "Hurriyet" describes 
the Bush-Sezer meeting as `historic'.  President Sezer will 
also hold meetings with the French President and the Prime 
Ministers of Denmark, Italy and Spain. 
 
 
Erdogan's Germany trip: Today's papers give conflicting news 
on Erdogan's visit to Germany.  "Milliyet" reports that 
Erdogan failed to secure German support for Turkey. 
Although he was given a warm welcome in Germany, the meeting 
with Schroeder was reportedly rather distant.  In his 
meeting with Erdogan, Schroeder said that Turkey first had 
to solve the Cyprus issue, maintain the separation of state 
and religion, and meet the requirements of democracy. 
Schroeder also drew attention to a lawsuit filed against 
German foundations in Turkey, and stressed Germany's 
sensitivity on this issue.  Erdogan in turn urged Schroeder 
to trust in Turkish justice.  During the press conference 
with German Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer,  Erdogan 
stressed Turkey's readiness for EU accession talks, while 
Fischer hesitated to give a positive message.   However, 
"Radikal" reports that the result of the meeting with 
Schroeder was positive. 
New Government:  All papers and TV channels cover ceremonies 
marking the transfer of power to the new government. 
"Milliyet" draws attention to messages issued by new Prime 
Minister Abdullah Gul.  Gul was quoted as saying that `We 
have no secret agenda.  Transparency is our guiding 
principle.  Turkey will not experience a new anti- 
fundamentalist crack down'.  Gul added that the first task 
to be carried out by the government would be to adjust 
regulations related to state security courts and detention 
periods.  "Milliyet" reports that during the hand-over 
ceremony at the Prime Ministry, Ecevit drew Gul's attention 
to three sensitive issues: Cyprus, Iraq and the economy. 
Most papers report the Bush phone call to Gul from Air Force 
1 to congratulate Gul on his new post.  "Sabah" reports that 
during the phone call Bush invited Gul to visit the US in 
2003. 
 
 
Cyprus: "Cumhuriyet" reports that the US is pressing hard 
for a breakthrough on Cyprus following Kofi Annan's peace 
plan announcement.  Within this framework, US Cyprus envoy 
Thomas Weston was in Ankara yesterday for meetings with 
Foreign Ministry officials.  Speaking to the press after his 
meetings, Weston said that Turkey should review the peace 
plan carefully to work out a settlement.  Weston voiced hope 
for the new government to make a breakthrough on Cyprus. 
 
 
Washington Post article: "Cumhuriyet" carries the Washington 
Post story on Ankara - Washington negotiations on an 
economic and military package for the compensation of the 
Turkey's losses in the event of an operation in Iraq. 
 
 
CODEL Issa visit: "Radikal" covers the visit with the 
headline "US delegation in Ankara", and reports that the US 
congress members met with U/S Ziyal yesterday.  Following 
the meeting with Ziyal, delegation leader Darrell Issa told 
journalists that `as the only democratic country in the 
Muslim world, Turkey's views are very important.  This 
dialogue will continue until the regime changes in Iraq'. 
 
 
 
 
EDITORIAL OPINION: 
 
 
a)  NATO Summit 
b)  UN Cyprus Plan 
 
 
"The Huge Gap" 
Fikret Ertan notes the military gap between the US and 
Europe in the Islamic-intellectual Zaman (11/20): "NATO 
Secretary General Robertson once again emphasized the need 
 
SIPDIS 
to increase NATO's military capabilities due to a series of 
new threats such as terrorism and weapons of mass 
destruction.  Actually, he has been issuing similar warnings 
for over a year, and has also criticized the Europeans for 
wasting money on defense. . Robertson  is trying to raise 
awareness on the need for the Alliance to monitor European 
defense spending, which is now 150 billion Euro, to make 
sure that it is properly spent. .  The fact of the matter is 
that the gap in military capabilities between the US and 
Europe has been widening in the post-cold war era. . In 
contrast with the defense budget cuts that Europe has been 
making, the US is spending at least twice as much for 
defense capabilities, and US spending is increasing still 
further since 9/11. . This is one of the major and important 
issues at the Prague summit, and the gap is of Turkey's 
direct concern." 
 
 
"A Tough Plan" 
Zafer Atay commented in economic/politics Dunya (11/20): 
"Despite its major downside on the territorial issue, the 
Kofi Annan plan deserves to be treated seriously.  This plan 
should be the basis for negotiations.  The Turkish side can 
correct the plan's mistakes and  carry out a series of fine- 
tuning of the text by sitting at the negotiating table. 
That might produce a long-lasting and just agreement between 
the two sides.  On the other hand, the UNSG should extend 
the deadline.  It might also be helpful to the settlement 
process if a solution is found to prevent Greek blackmailing 
to the benefit of the Greek Cypriots on the EU enlargement 
issue." 

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