TURKEY PRESS ON JULY 31

These are some of the major headlines and their summaries in Turkish press on July 31, 2011. The World Bulletin does not verify these stories and does not vouch for their accuracy.

TURKEY PRESS ON JULY 31

TURKIYE
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HE HAD NOT BEEN TO "HASDAL"
Former General Staff Chief Gen. Isik Kosaner, who has recently filed for retirement, had visited the jailed generals at Hasdal prison 6 months ago together with three force commanders who are also retiring. Gen. Necdet Ozel, who is now becoming the new army chief, was not with them that day.

NO CONCESSIONS OVER DEMOCRACY
In his address to the nation, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan commented on terrorism and the latest developments in Turkey. "We will not let past mistakes happen again and we will never make concessions regarding democracy," Erdogan said.

ZAMAN
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EVERYTHING PROCEEDS IN ITS OWN COURSE, THERE IS NO CRISIS
President Abdullah Gul commented on the retirement petitions filed by General Staff Chief Isik Kosaner and three force commanders. Gul said the developments after the incident should not be seen as a crisis. "This is an extraordinary case. However, everthing is back on track. Normal procedures will be implemented. There is no gap (in the chain of command)," the president said.

NORWAY MASSACRE ONLY TIP OF ICEBERG
In an interview with Zaman daily, Ekmeleddin Ihsanoglu, the head of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC), commented on the latest massacre in Norway during which anti-Islamist Anders Behring Breivik brutally killed 77 people. Ihsanoglu said the incident was only the "tip of the iceberg". "This is an outcome of the rising Islamophobia in Europe," he said.

YENI SAFAK
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NO GAP IN STATE
President Abdullah Gul spoke about resignations of Chief of General Staff Gen. Isik Kosaner and three force commanders.
"As you see, everything is proceeding on its course. There is no gap," Gul said.

"WE WILL RESIGN", "YOUR CALL"
Details of the meeting between President Abdullah Gul, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Chief of General Staff Isik Kosaner have been revealed as Turkey overcame the resignation crisis at the top of the military only in five hours.
Gen. Kosaner brought forward promotion of 14 generals and admirals who are behind bars in Balyoz case. Gul and Erdogan said they would not approve promotions as they were against the law. Kosaner spoke about en masse resignation. "Your call" was the answer he got.

VATAN
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MAN OF DUTY, DISTANT TO POLITICS
Colleagues of Gen. Necdet Ozel, the new commander of Turkish Armed Forces, said that Ozel was a person in love with the military. Desribing Ozel as a loyal and warm-hearted person, his friends said the general had never displayed a political stance and he had never been somebody's man. They said Ozel would keep the army away from politics.

HOW THE WEST COVERED THE STORY
Regarding the resignation of Turkish military chiefs, The New York Times wrote the army's move had backfired. The daily said even those who were not fond of Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan's party were not willing to accept military rules anymore. Reuters news agency said, if it had been years ago, Turkish generals would have conducted a coup rather than leaving their positions. German Der Spiegel also wrote that the Turkish army had surrendered to Erdogan. "They say democracy has won, but we will see," the magazine said.

CUMHURIYET
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YAS UNDER SHADE OF RESIGNATIONS
Supreme Military Council (YAS) that will appoint new force commanders will convene on Monday under the shade of resignations of military chief and force commanders. Normally, the Council convenes with participation of 16 people including the Prime Minister and Defense Minister. However, this time the Council will make decisions with 11 members. If the court arrests commander of the Aegean Army Nusret Tasdeler, who is a suspect in a case dealing with charges of carrying out an internet campaign to overthrow the government, the Council will hold meetings with 10 members.

PKK ATTACKS: TWO SOLDIERS KILLED
PKK terrorists opened fire on a military team patrolling for road security in Semdinli town of southeastern province of Hakkari. One soldier was killed in the terrorist attack.
Terrorist also attacked a gendarmerie traffic team in another southeastern province Kahramanmaras, killing a specialist sergeant and wounding two soldiers.

RADIKAL
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KEMAL BURKAY RETURNS TO TURKEY AFTER 31 YEARS
Kemal Burkay returned to his country after 31 years and he started a new life after the age of 70. He left Stockholm, saying, "I am not going to Turkey to fight Ocalan."
At his arrival in Istanbul, Burkay said government's democratic initiative was very important and that's why he came back to Turkey.
The return of Burkay, who had always argued that "armed struggle is never a solution", prompted his poem: "The climate would change and become Mediterranean."

ALWAYS NUMBER 1
The government appointed Gen. Necdet Ozel as Land Forces Commander and Acting Chief of General Staff. Ozel had drawn attention when he gave warm messages to Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan at the beginning of government's democratic initiative.
According to his friends, Gen. Ozel has always been the number 1 at school and during his career.

HURRIYET
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IT WAS EXTRAORDINARY, NOW IT IS BACK ON TRACK
Turkish President Abdullah Gul said nobody should think that Turkey was going through a crisis. "What has happened lately is surely extraordinary, however, everything is back on track," Gul said. Speaking to reporters before travelling to Istanbul, Gul also noted that the Supreme Military Council (YAS) would convene as scheduled and would continue to discuss the issues on its agenda, including the promotions of army members, as planned.

YAS SCENARIOS TOTALLY CHANGED
During the YAS meeting to begin tomorrow, promotions could be carried out both in line with established precedents regarding the length of service of army members or in the light of different practices. On the other hand, as Gendarmerie Forces Commander Necdet Ozel had the chance to become the General Staff Chief two years earlier than expected and he may remain in office for 4 years, it is now wondered how Turkish Armed Forces' organizational structure will take shape after 2015.

MILLIYET
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WHAT WILL HAPPEN IN CAKMAK HALL?
Resignation crisis in Turkish Armed Forces have been overcome after Gen. Necdet Ozel was appointed as the acting military chief. However, these critical issues will be debated during the Supreme Military Council meetings to take place in Cakmak Hall at military headquarters:
Gen. Ozel will be appointed as the new Chief of General Staff on the last day of Supreme Military Council meetings. Force commanders will be announced on the last day too.
This year's meetings will be a first as it will be attended by the least number of generals and admirals due to retirements and arrested staff.
The biggest question mark is the appointment of Land Forces Commander. Saldiray Berk, a suspect in Ergenekon case, and Aslan Guner, who comes after Berk by seniority, are not expected to be appointed as Land Forces Commander as President Abdullah Gul is not positive on them. Huseyin Kivrikoglu and Bekir Kalyoncu can be appointed by appointment of these generals may bring new petitions demanding retirement.

THERE IS HOPE IN THIS GROUP
Qualifying groups for 2014 World Cup to take place in Brazil have been drawn in Rio de Janeiro. Turkey will play against the Netherlands, Hungary, Romania, Estonia and Andorra in Group D. Group winners will play automatically in finals. Best eight runners-up will advance to a play-off. Qualifying group matches will be played between September 7, 2012 and October 15, 2013.

SABAH
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FOUR NEW COMMANDERS TO BE APPOINTED BEFORE YAS
President Gul's latest remarks signalled that new chain of command of the Turkish army would become clear before the YAS meeting to begin tomorrow. The president said, after top Turkish commanders' decision to retire, everything proceeded in its normal course. "The names to be in the new chain of command will conduct the YAS meeting," he said.

RECONCILIATORY, REALISTIC
In his address to the nation, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan listed the basic features of Turkey's new constitution. "The new constitution will be in accordance with our nation's will for change and democratic expectations. It will also be a realistic constitution that will reflect the realities of Turkey and the world," Erdogan said. The premier said that the constitution would embrace everybody and consider social diversity a richness.

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Last Mod: 31 Temmuz 2011, 11:56
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