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Cablegate: Southeast Turkey Press Summary,

Published: Tue 6 May 2003 03:02 PM
This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.
UNCLAS SECTION 01 OF 02 ADANA 0130
SIPDIS
E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL PINS PGOV PHUM TU IZ ADANA
SUBJECT: SOUTHEAST TURKEY PRESS SUMMARY,
MAY 6, 2003
1. This is the Southeastern Turkey press summary
for May 6, 2003. Please note that Turkish press
reports often contain errors or exaggerations;
AmConsulate Adana does not vouch for the accuracy
of the reports summarized here.
POLITICAL, SECURITY, HUMAN RIGHTS
2. Turkiye: Although the US had announced the
PKK/KADEK as a "terrorist organization," the US
gave permission to the PKK/KADEK to open an
office in Mosul. It is believed that the US has
been disregarding Turkey's warnings about the PKK
because, after the collapse of Saddam's regime,
the US turned a blind eye to the PKK's seizure of
some of Iraq's weapons in northern Iraq. The PKK
has expedited its reorganization in northern Iraq
and has opened many offices throughout the
country, including Mosul. It is further claimed
that the US is trying to take its revenge from
Turkey because of the TGNA's failure to endorse
the motion that would have allowed the deployment
of US troops in Turkey. It is also reported that
the PKK has been making serious preparations to
infiltrate into Turkey again.
3. Evrensel: In order to protest the shortening
of the time allowed for Abdullah Ocalan to meet
with his family and lawyers at Imrali prison, all
KADEK defendants in Turkey will boycott their
weekly meetings with their families. Making an
announcement on behalf of all KADEK inmates,
Nasrullah Kuran, said shortening Abdullah
Ocalan's meeting with his family and lawyers to
15 and 45 minutes respectively was inhumane and
illegal, and such applications are intended to
undermine the Kurdish-Turkish brotherhood.
4. Sabah: Sabah paper claimed that, according to
two documents seized from Saddam's Secret
Intelligence Organization's (SIO) archives in
Baghdad, the PKK and Osman Ocalan had established
ties with the SIO. The first letter, written by
Osman Ocalan, gave information about former Prime
Minister Ecevit's visit to the US in January
2002, and suggested persuading the Prime Minister
about the Northern Front. The second document
suggested taking advantage of the PKK for
contacting the DHKP-C (Revolutionist Peoples
Communist Party-Front) which wanted to attack
Incirlik AFB in Adana. The documents indicated
the presence of a liaison between the PKK and
Iraq's Intelligence Organization.
5. Turkiye: The President of the Executive Board
of Gaziantep-based Sanko Holding, Abdulkadir
Konukoglu, gave a one-million USD check to Prime
Minister Erdogan in order to address the wounds
of the earthquake in Bingol. The money was raised
in a campaign in Gaziantep to help the earthquake
victims.
6. Turkiye/Milli Gazete/Milliyet: The Chief
Public Prosecutor of Bingol, M. Ali Erbay, said
an investigation was started against the
contractors, comptrollers, and project designers
of the buildings that collapsed in the
earthquake. Erbay said a warrant of arrest had
been issued for the contractor of the boarding
school that collapsed killing 84 students. The
contractor would face between one to six years of
imprisonment for failure of his obligations. In a
recent cabinet meeting, the government decided to
build 2,566 houses for the earthquake victims by
the end of the year. The government blamed the
PKK for the earthquake-victims' demonstrations in
Bingol. After the quake in Bingol, the boarding
schools in the region are being inspected.
Because of cracks in the buildings, 500 students
in the boarding schools in Batman were sent to
other schools.
7. Turkiye: The sound-bomb that exploded in
front of the Finance-Investment building on Inonu
Street in Mersin at 22:30 last night caused
material damages. No organization has claimed
responsibility. According to police officials, an
investigation is underway.
8. Cumhuriyet: In his address at DEHAP's
Provincial Convention in Diyarbakir, DEHAP's
Chair, Mehmet Abbasoglu, claimed that his party
did not compete with other political parties in
the November 3 General Elections; rather, DEHAP
competed with the public prosecutors. Abbasoglu
stated, "As a political party founded five years
ago, the government did not give us any financial
support, and was trying to close us down
permanently." Abbasoglu added that the Prime
Minister did not visit the Bingol Municipality
after the earthquake to express his condolences
to the people, and, therefore, the Prime Minister
should apologize to the inhabitants of Bingol.
Abbasoglu claimed that isolation was being
imposed on Abdullah Ocalan at Imrali Island, and
it was a shame that people from Turkey could not
go to the island.
9. Bolge: Because of the rumors that DYP's Adana
Provincial Chairman, Yavuz Tekeli, and Seyhan
District Chairman, Mustafa Tumer, will be
terminated by the party's headquarters, both
chairmen will resign from their parties today. It
is also reported that DYP's chairmen for Yuregir
and Kozan districts have also been making
preparations for their resignations.
ECONOMIC AND AGRICULTURAL DEVELOPMENTS
10. Tercuman: The Mardin Cement Plant signed an
agreement with Syria to export cement to that
country. According to the first phase of the
agreement, 250 thousand tons of cement will be
exported. The director of the plant, Ilker Guner,
announced that they already had achieved their
export goals for 2003, and they were now working
on their export objectives in 2004. He added that
they would make USD 11 million from the exports
to Syria.
11. Radikal: After four months of closure, the
Habur Border Gate between Turkey and Iraq was
reopened to transit transportation as of
yesterday. The people in Silopi and Cizre are
extremely happy with the reopening of the gate
because the gate is perceived to be the artery of
the economy in the region.
HOLTZ
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