Tuesday's dailies mainly cover 'rearrangement' of Turkish troops in N. Iraq plus EU's opening of new chapter in accession talks with Turkey


World Bulletin / News Desk

Dailies on Tuesday mainly dedicated their front pages to the "rearrangement" of Turkish troops in northern Iraq as well as the opening of a new chapter in accession talks between the EU and Turkey.

VATAN ran with the headline: “Rearrangement, which resolves the crisis”.

According to the daily, 100 Turkish troops [which were sent to Bashiqa camp on Dec. 4] deployed in Bamerni base [in northern Iraq] in a convoy of 10 to 12 vehicles.

Baghdad had complained about the deployment of troops to the site near Mosul, calling it a violation of Iraqi sovereignty and insisting the force was withdrawn.

Turkey had said that the 150 soldiers and up to 25 tanks were stationed in Bashiqa to protect servicemen training Iraqis to fight ISIL. The training mission has been in operation since March and was not assigned combat duties.

Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said on Monday the "rearrangement" of Turkish troops in Iraq was part of a military necessity.

"Turkey has always done what military necessities [require]. We have taken steps necessary for rearrangement as we mentioned in the statement issued by the Prime Ministry," Davutoglu told A Haber channel.

Running a photo of the convoy, HURRIYET used the headline: “We have withdrawn troops”. 

The daily also wrote that U.S. Vice President Joe Biden, in a phone call with Davutoglu, expressed his pleasure over the withdrawal of some Turkish troops out of Bashiqa Camp.

“The Vice President welcomed reports of the withdrawal of Turkish troops out of Camp Bashiqa as an important step to de-escalate recent tensions,” a White House statement said on Monday. 

HABERTURK’s headline read: “Rearrangement of troops in Bashiqa”.  It quoted a security expert as saying: “It is not a withdrawal, but a relocation. The process was managed well. “

The EU’s opening of a new chapter in Turkey’s ongoing accession talks was also covered by many newspapers on Tuesday.

“New chapter with the EU,” was MILLIYET’s front-page headline. The daily said: "One more important step was taken in Turkey’s EU process," recalling that France had blocked negotiations concerning this particular chapter.   

Chapter 17 aims at bringing Turkey in line with the EU’s economic and monetary policy and guaranteeing the independence of the central bank. It is also the first chapter to be opened in two years and raises the total number of chapters opened so far in the accession talks to 15 out of 35.

On the same subject, YENISAFAK used the headline: “Despite France, 17th chapter opened,” while HURRIYET’s headline read: “First chapter after two years”, and VATAN wrote: "A new leaf with EU".  

Istanbul club Fenerbahce's upcoming match against Russia's Lokomotiv Moscow in the Europa League during a period of political tension between the two countries dominated the sports headlines. 

HABERTURK's headline read: "Fenerbahce drawn against Russian team in Europa League."  The daily wrote that Davutoglu indicated the match could be an opportunity to "resolve the crisis". 

The sides are set to meet in Istanbul on Feb. 16, which will be followed by the second leg in Moscow a week later.

HURRIYET also used the headline "Russian rival for Fenerbahce," while VATAN's headline read "Russian and Italian rivals [for Fenerbahce and Galatasaray]".

Istranbul's Galatasaray are to play Italian club Lazio Roma in the same competition. 

In economic news, DUNYA wrote: "Economic effects of Russian crisis have been increasing." The daily reported that certain shops in several cities in Russia were changing their sign, from Turkish to Russian,  because of harassment worries. 

Güncelleme Tarihi: 15 Aralık 2015, 12:11