October 2007

Iran To Help Solve Iraq-Turkey Crisis

In a written statement Iraqi PM Nouri Maliki asked Tehran to intervene and help solve the problem between Iraq and Turkey.

Maliki also asked the Iranian government to support the Iraq conference, which will convene in Istanbul on Friday, November 2, with the participation of countries neighboring Iraq and the permanent members of the UN Security Council.

A high level official in Iranian Embassy in Ankara said that if the two sides agreed, Iran would assume the role to mediate in solving the current problems between Iraq and Turkey. The Iranian official said that the Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad had spoken to Turkish President Abdullah Gul, Iraqi President Jalal Talabani and PM Nouri Maliki and added, “Iran is a country with experience in war; we fought against Iraq for eight years. Many soldiers and innocent people die in wars. We are for peaceful resolutions to be found by our neighbors. Iran advocates for resolving all conflicts by peaceful means.”

The Embassy official said that Iran also has problems with PJAK, that is considered a branch of PKK, that has killed Iranian soldiers and that they understood Turkey.

Source: Hurriyet, Turkey, October 31, 2007

Date Posted: October 31, 2007
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MHP Leader Bahçeli: The PM Visiting Washington Will Accomplish Nothing

Speaking at his party's group meeting, chairman of the opposition Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) Devlet Bahceli said yesterday that the prime minister's visit to the U.S. next week would serve no good purpose but would only delay Turkey taking military action against the PKK in Iraq. Decrying Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice's description of northern Iraq as "Kurdistan", Bahceli called on Erdogan to cancel his U.S. visit.

He said that the prime minister’s own words about how the U.S. is 'creating projects despite us in the region' was an admission of diplomatic bankruptcy.

"With a parliamentary motion, the Turkish nation has given the government authorization to take a cross-border operation," Bahceli said, "There's no need to seek authorization anywhere else. Now it's time to use this authorization."

Source: Cumhuriyet, Turkey, October 31, 2007

Date Posted: October 31, 2007
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Baykal: Now Is The Time For Turkey To Decide

Speaking at his party's group meeting, main opposition Republican People's Party (CHP) leader Deniz Baykal yesterday said that Turkey now stands at a decisive moment. "A cross-border operation would show that Turkey is a serious country that deserves respect," he said. Baykal added that what is at stake is the prestige and respect of the Turkish Republic.

He also noted, "U.S. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice asked Turkey to wait 72 hours before a possible over the border operation. Turkey accepted the 72 hours thinking that in that time frame a solution could be found. But 72 hours passed. And then another 72 hours passed. Which 72 hour period are we in now?"

Source: Hurriyet, Turkey, October 31, 2007

Date Posted: October 31, 2007
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General Büyükanit: Trip To U.S. Is Important; Incursion Into Iraq Not Expected Before Erdogan-Bush Meeting

At the national day reception at the Austrian Embassy, Turkish Chief of General Staff General Yasar Büyükanit said, “When the armed forces are assigned with the mission by the government , then the cross-border operations will take place. If need arises, we can also demand it. The Prime Minister's upcoming trip to the U.S. is important. We will wait for his return."

Source: NTV, Turkey, October 28, 2007

Date Posted: October 30, 2007
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PM Erdogan Soon To Visit Washington; Military Will Wait For PM Erdogan's Return

It appears that the Turkish military and politicians are expecting greater clarity on the issue of cross-border operations after PM Tayyip Erdogan’s upcoming visit to the U.S.. PM Erdogan is set to meet with President Bush on November 5.

When asked by journalists what Turkey expects from the US visit, he said:"I do not know what will happen or not happen up to the time of my visit, because we are in a sensitive situation. But if nothing exceptional happens until then, we will speak with President Bush openly and clearly about this issue particularly, and about other topics."

Source: Turkish dailies, October 29, 2007

Date Posted: October 30, 2007
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Afghani General Dostum: "We Are On Turkey's Side In Its Struggle Against Terrorism"

General Rashid Dostum, deputy commander in chief of the Afghan Military Forces, released yesterday a letter of condolences for the 12 Turkish soldiers who lost their lives in a recent terrorist PKK attack. The letter said, “I condemn these terrorist attacks and sincerely share the grief and mourning of the soldiers’ families. We support the Turkish Republic’s and parliament’s struggle against terrorism and we ask for God’s forbearance and fortitude for the families of the fallen soldiers. I declare that Afghanistan is on Turkey’s side and ready to help in its struggle against terrorism.”

Source: Cumhuriyet, Turkey, October 30, 2007

Date Posted: October 30, 2007
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Foreign Ministers of Syria, Iran Back Turkey's Fight Against Terrorism

The foreign ministers of Iran and Syria, Manuchehr Mottaki and Velid Muallim, yesterday lent their support to Turkey’s fight with the terrorist PKK.

Speaking to reporters following their talks in Damascus, the two top diplomats said that they were making efforts to solve the PKK issue between Turkey and Iraq.

Source: Turkiye, Turkey, October 30, 2007

Date Posted: October 30, 2007
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Anti-Bush Song Clip Explodes In Popularity In Turkey

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As tensions grow between Turkey and the U.S., anti-Americanism in Turkey also reaches new heights. An anti-Bush song clip recorded last year by the popular Turkish singer Baris Akarsu, is now so much in demand that Turkish TV channels are broadcasting it multiple times every day.

Other anti-American video clips for the same song are breaking viewing records in youtube and other internet sites.

Following are the lyrics of the song by Baris Akarsu, who died last summer in a traffic accident:

[...]

Source: Milliyet, Turkey, October 26, 2007

Date Posted: October 30, 2007
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Cartoon In Lebanese Paper On Turkey And Northern Iraq

On the edge of the chasm: “Northern Iraq.”

Source: Al-Mustaqbal, Lebanon, October 29, 2007

Date Posted: October 30, 2007
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Cartoon In Qatari, Saudi Papers On Turkey And Iraq

"Iraq," on left, says: "If you can find an available spot – no problem, shoot."

Source: Al-Sharq, Qatar, October 26, 2007; Al-Madina, Saudi Arabia, October 27, 2007

Date Posted: October 29, 2007
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