x0x Turkish news for week ending 27 Feb. 1999
A service of the TURKISH RADIO HOUR, producer of:
TURKISH CULTURAL PROGRAM
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Today's news was edited by Ahmet Toprak
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Edited for the Turkish Radio Hour by
H. Fatih Ugurdag
* Repercussions of the capture of the Kurdish terrorist
leader Mr. Abdullah Ocalan is continuing in and outside
Turkey. Mr. Ocalan was captured by Turkish authorities on
Feb 16th in Kenya and was secretly flown to Turkey to face
justice. It turns out that he was given refuge in the Greek
Embassy in Nairobi.
Greece is now under pressure from Turkey, US, and even the
European Union since it has supported and provided shelter
to a terrorist leader. The US government has hinted that
Greece may be put in the list of countries which support
terrorism. Greece has already been shaken greatly in the
aftermath of Ocalan's capture. Three Greek cabinet ministers
resigned two days after the capture. However, most Greeks
have been expressing disapproval in their government since
they let Ocalan in Turkey's hands so easily.
In the past weeks, Kurdish protesters blamed MOSSAD, the
Israeli intelligence agency for the capture of Mr. Ocalan.
Israelis claimed no involvement, and it turns out that the
White House is now hinting that they were the ones who have
helped Turks to locate Mr. Ocalan.
A Turkish newspaper and BBC said that Mr. Ocalan and other
captured Kurdish Workers Party members have also implicated
Greece further. Mr. Ocalan and a former top ranking Kurdish
Workers Party member who was captured earlier are saying
that Greece lets Kurdish Workers Party run two training camp
on its soil and supplies he rebel Kurds with arms,
explosives, and training. It is also reported that Mr.
Ocalan also confessed to getting generous help from Syria,
Iran, and even Germany and Italy which supposedly provided
plastic mines which are impossible to detect. The list of
countries mentioned is actually longer.
Turkish officials are now putting pressure on Greece and
is asking it to end its support for a terrorist separatist
organization. Turkish officials say that if Greece does not
end its hostile approach, this may turn into a military
Greek government has so far not changed its political
position but instead declared that the country is in a red
alert against any Turkish military moves.
The European Union has, on the other hand, asked Turkey to
guarantee a fair trial for Ocalan while condemning Greece
for sheltering Ocalan. Turkish Prime Minister Ecevit has
expressed his commitment to a fair trial. Turkish defense
lawyers were allowed to meet with Ocalan. However, few days
later one lawyer declared that he may not go ahead with his
defense as he is receiving threats. In the meantime,
Ocalan's interrogation has ended where he stated that only
his personal funds are 2.5 million dollars.
After a long account of the Ocalan case we now continue with
* The Commander of the US Air Force, General Michael E. Ryan
arrived Monday in Turkey on an official visit. General Ryan
visited his Turkish counterpart General Ilhan Kilic
yesterday in Ankara. Kilic said after the meeting that they
had exchanged views on military issues involving Turkey and
the US. Ryan also visited Ataturk's Mausoleum and met the
Deputy Chief of General Staff, Hilmi Ozkok.
* President Suleyman Demirel became the first Turkish
president to visit Philippines. His visit started on Sunday
and ended on Tuesday. Three agreements were signed between
the two countries regarding cooperation in economic and
technical fields, mutual preservation and promotion of
investments and visa exemption in official passports.
* The Georgian President Eduard Shevardnadze was scheduled
to arrive in Ankara on Friday, where he is expected to sign
a joint declaration on economic and political issues with
his Turkish counterpart, Suleyman Demirel. The timing of the
visit is thought to be related to the on-going debates over
the Baku-Ceyhan project and also to the debates over
security in the Caucasus. Shevardnadze will travel to
Istanbul with Demirel on Saturday. The Georgian President is
being accompanied by his Foreign Affairs, Defense,
Transport, Communications and Energy Ministers.
* Turkish electoral authorities have rejected a comeback bid
by former Islamist premier Necmettin Erbakan. Erbakan had
filed documents last week stating that he planned to contest
a deputy's seat in the central district of Konya as an
independent candidate in the April 18 legislative elections.
The electoral committee also refused to allow former justice
minister Sevket Kazan, a top aide to Erbakan, to stand for
election as an independent in Bilecik, northwestern Turkey.
Both men were in early 1998 barred from politics for five
years and their Welfare Party (Refah) banned on the grounds
it was working against the secular regime.
* Germany has a large immigrant population. Turks outnumber
all the other minorities by a population of two million.
Most of these Turkish immigrants are second or third
generation and they only speak German. Nevertheless, since
German citizenship laws are still based on a 1913
nationality law, these immigrants cannot still foresee when
they will become German citizens. However, after the social
democrats won the elections in September with the help of
Green Party, there was hope that the government would
modernize the immigration policy -- allowing many of the
country's seven million foreigners to receive German
citizenship. Yet a recent victory of the Christian democrats
in a German state election may cause the federal government
to re-think granting dual citizenship.
Edited for Turkish Radio Hour by Mark Nowak
* Turkish Central Bank foreign exchange reserves increased
by $325 million in the week of February 12-19, 1999 to $20.4
* The Index of Istanbul Stock Exchange increased by 4.71 %
following Turkey's new foreign borrowing opportunities.
* World Bank experts are examining Turkey's privatization
process and social security projects. The experts stressed
that the lack of a regulatory council is a major obstacle to
privatization. The privatization program should be directed
by one single entity, claimed the experts, noting that the
current multi-headed system slows down the privatization
* The Japanese Eximbank will extend $200 million in loans to
the Turkish Eximbank. The loans will be used to meet the
financial requirements of small and medium-scale enterprises
and to support exports. It is reported that work is going-on
in order to allocate and utilize the loans.
* The Prime Minister of the Turkish Republic of Northern
Cyprus, Dervis Eroglu, visited Chairman of the Istanbul
Trade Chamber, Mehmet Yildirim. During the meeting, Eroglu
said that in the wake of the capture of the separatist
chief, the new realities were causing uneasiness both in
Greece and Greek-Cyprus. Eroglu pointed out that the Turkish
Republic of Northern Cyprus ought to build up a strong
economy and that they need more investment in Cyprus. He
invited Turkish businessmen to make more investments in the
Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus.
* Turkey can expect to experience a period of economic
recovery in the wake of the European Union countries'
formation of the Monetary Union by increasing its exports,
provided that it can accomplish its structural reforms, said
Turkey's State Planning Organization in its report, "The
effect of the Euro on Turkey". The report indicated that 50
% of Turkey's foreign trade is with European Union countries
and that 45 % of Turkey's total debt is in European Union
member countries' national currencies.
* The New Chairman of the Turkish Clothing Industrialists'
Association, Bulent Atuk, has remarked that the growth rate
in the clothing sector was 6.5 % last year, and ranked first
in Europe and sixth in the world.
* The Benelux Group International Trade, Industry and Law
Company is trying to found a Turkish Trade Center in
Amsterdam, said company official Ibrahim Emre. Emre told the
Anatolia news agency that the Turkish trading base will be
very close to Amsterdam Airport, whose annual trade volume
totals $450 billion.
* Rahmi Koc, the Head of the Turco-Greek Business Council,
which has recently canceled all joint activities with
Greece, resigned from his post. Koc had earlier stated that
it had become evident that Greece supports the rebel Kurdish
Workers Party organization and had called on Greek business
circles and non-governmental organizations to follow their
* Turkey's officials are backing their offer for amnesty to
the rebel Kurdish Workers Party with investments in the
Southeastern Turkey to create jobs for them. A development
package of $90 million is earmarked for the region to
complete the construction of industrial facilities in the
* No agreements could be reached during the third bargaining
meeting between the government and the Turk-Is Trade Union
on behalf of 500 thousand public workers. The government
retreated from the idea of providing a $29 wage rise for
each of the second, third and fourth 6-month periods within
* "Business Week" presented Kenan Aydin, a German-resident
Turkish businessman who owns a construction firm and who has
been living in Germany for 18 years, as the "Model
Entrepreneur" of the year.
* Speaking at the "Information on Business Opportunities in
Hamburg" seminar organized by the Istanbul Textile and
Ready-to-Wear Exporters Union in Istanbul, the Chairman of
Hamburg's Economic Incentive Institution, Hartmut Bock, said
that Hamburg was the most suitable province from which to
enter the Eastern European and European Union markets and
invited Turkish entrepreneurs to invest in Hamburg.
* Gazi Ercel, the President of Turkey's Central Bank, said
that international rating institutions lower Turkey's credit
grade on the basis of misleading indicators, and therefore,
their assessments are ineffective to a large extent.
SPORTS, MONEY, ARTS and CULTURE NEWS
Edited by Aydin Koc
Exchange rate for the U.S. dollar in Turkish Liras:
Selling Rate Buying Rate
One U.S. Dollar 350,691 349,008
* In the 21st week of the Premier Turkish Soccer League
SAMSUNSPOR : 1 FENERBAHCE : 1
BE$iKTA$ : 1 ALTAY : 1
GALATASARAY: 3 iSTANBULSPOR : 3
TRABZONSPOR: 0 KOCAELiSPOR : 3
ANKARAGUCU : 1 GAZiANTEP : 1
KARABUKSPOR: 1 ERZURUMSPOR : 1
DARDANEL : 2 ANTALYASPOR : 0
SAKARYASPOR: 4 BURSASPOR : 1
ADANASPOR : 1 GENCLERBiRLiGi : 1
League rankings are as follows :
1. Fenerbahce 48 6. Istanbulspor 33
2. Galatasaray 47 7. Antalyaspor 31
3. Besiktas 45 8. Genclerbirligi 29
4. Trabzonspor 40 9. Gaziantepspor 28
5. Kocaelispor 37 10. Altay 25
* In the first game of the 22nd week
In today's games:
Istanbulspor - Trabzonspor 0-0
Bursaspor - Besiktas 1-2
High and Low temperatures in degrees C and F
ANKARA :10/-1 (50/30) Rainy
iSTANBUL : 10/6 (50/43) Rainy
iZMiR : 13/8 (55/46) Rainy
ANTALYA :16/9 (61/48) Rainy
ARTS & CULTURE
* It is expected that thousands of foreign tourists will
flock to Turkey to watch the last solar eclipse of the
century. The number of foreign tourists who have booked up
for the solar eclipse to be viewed on August 11, 1999, has
already amounted to 2,000. Most of the tourists are from the
US and Japan.
* The German Periodontology Association (DGP) has given its
traditional award to Dr. Sami Dogan, a Turkish dentist who
works at the Dental Clinic of the Hannover Faculty of
Medicine. The association did not grant the award to anyone
in the last two years because no studies worthy of the prize
appeared in 1996 and 1997, the Anatolia news agency reports.
Dogan was awarded for his research titled 'entrance
mechanisms of bacterium into the gums and the discomfort
they cause there'.
* At the 49th Berlin Film Festival, the Turkish film "Gunese
Yolculuk", (A Journey to the Sun) by Yesim Ustaoglu won the
"Blue Angel" Film Award and a DM 50,000 prize. The film was
also presented with the Peace Award last week.
* Thousands of Ottoman art pieces sent to France as part of
the 700th anniversary of the founding of the Ottoman Empire
have attracted immense interest. In May, art treasures from
the Topkapi Palace will be displayed at the Versailles.
*** Turkish American Association of California has partially
underwritten today's program. TAAC is a non-profit
charitable organization established to promote better
understanding between Americans and Turks.
If you have any questions about Turks and Turkey,
give them a call:
or e-mail them at
taac at taaca.org
*** Turkish Film at the San Jose Film Festival
The 9th San Jose Film Festival will be featuring
Turkish director Mustafa Altioklars "Agir Roman" film.
The film's title in English is
"Cholera Street" and it will be shown at
UA Pavillion Theater 201 S. 2nd Street
on March 2, 7:15 P.M.
"A feverishly paced look at the unsound, violent and
salacious inhabitants of Cholera Street, home to a
'mish-mash' of cultural, ethnic and religious
*** AEGEAN FRIENDS
Arkadas * Filoi
AEGEAN FRIENDS is a social-cultural group of Greeks,
Turks, Cypriots, and other peoples of good will, coming
together to celebrate their rich heritage, explore common
roots, and promote peace in the Aegean region.
Share music, food, and conversation. Dance. Create art.
Discover the generosity of the heart.
For more information contact
San Francisco, CA 94114-0022
e-mail: aegfriends at aol.com
*** Turkish Folkdancing in Northern California:
*** Arkadash Turkish Folk Dance Ensemble, San Jose
Free classes, all ages are welcome
Call Omer Uyuklu at (408) 374-5066
e-mail: ccc at calcc.com
*** Horon, Monterey
For more information call Yavuz Atila:
Horon is a Turkish American Association of California
*** Art for Peace, Stanford
For more information contact
artforpeace-intnl at lists.stanford.edu
408-971-1376 Carol Leitner
*** Group Anadolum.
For folk, pop and sufi music of Turkey,
also for playing oud and saz.
Group Anadolum is composed of about 25 musicians and
Group Anadolum is a Turkish American Association of
California associate organization.
Contact Sahin Gunsel at (415) 643-1722
e-mail: sgunsel at hotmail.com
*** PROGRAMIN SONUNA DOGRU SU ANONSLARI YAP:
*** Tune in to the following broadcasts in the Bay Area:
- Every Saturday at 5 P.M. to the
Turkish Cultural Program on KUSF FM 90.3
- Every third Saturday at 6 P.M.
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Music from Africa-Asia, hosted by Kutay Kugay.
- Mondays 7:00 - 10:00 P.M. 89.5 FM
International Program KBES
(covers Stanislaus County all the way to Manteca),
hosted by George Geevargis.
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*** NEW CD ** NEW CD ** NEW CD ** NEW CD ** NEW CD **
*************** JUST RELEASED ****************
*** Yusif Savalan
"Heydar Baba" features Yusif Savalan's silken voice and
Azerbaijan's Ahmet Bakikhanov Music Ensemble. Mr. Savalan's
interpretation of great Azeri poet Shehriyari's
masterpiece Heydar Baba is the title song.
CEMALI "The First Alternative Music Group from Turkey" have
released their first US CD "Whirl" and it is available
through the Turkish Radio Hour. Cemali's recording and
performing career took them from San Francisco to around
the world and back to San Francisco. A shorter version of
their CD sold 300 thousand copies in Turkey.
*** Chingiz Sadykhov
Music of world-class pianist from Azerbaijan, Chingiz
Sadykhov. "Songs of Azerbaijan" is a new CD release
from 7/8 Music. Maestro Chingiz Sadykhov has been
playing piano as a concert pianist and accompanist to
the greatest singers of Azerbaijan and Soviet Union for
over 50 years. He has garnered the coveted title of
"Peoples' Artist of Azerbaijan". He has performed and
taught music around the world.
*** Necati Celik
7/8 Music Productions is proud to release new CD
from oud master
Necati Celik belongs to a group of musicians that are a
rare breed Indeed. He is considered one of the great oud
players in Turkey now.
This CD includes one astonishing vocal track from the
All CDs are available through the Turkish Radio Hour:
* From US and Canada you can order the CD by sending
* Yasemin by Necati Celik: US$ 18
* Songs of Azerbaijan by C Sadykov: US$ 18
* Whirl by Cemali: US$ 15
* Make checks payable to 7/8 Music
* Make check payable to TRH for Mr. Savalan's CD!
* US$ 18 for Heyder Baba by Yusif Savalan.
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Turkish Radio Hour
P.O. Box 1332
Cupertino, CA 95015 USA
For more information about both CDs please contact us here
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