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Entries in EU (7)


Turkey Analysis: Erdogan's "One Leader, One Nation, One Market" --- Will It Succeed?

Prime Minister Recep Tayyip ErdoganIt is a busy and tricky time for the Erdogan Government : relations stuck with the European Union, a possible peace process to solve the Kurdish question, the long-awaited new Constitution, prospects of switching to a Presidential system, and next year's elections.

>The combination requires finely-adjusted diplomatic steps with opposition parties. For instance, the support of the pro-Kurdish Peace and Democracy Party (BDP) takes on importance in the Constitution-making process, while the main opposition faction, the Republican People's Party (CHP), has a role in the consensus over counter-terrorism.

So how to hold all this together? Despite some inconsistencies by the Government in its approach, there are three notions that are immutable: "One Leader, One Nation, One Market".

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Turkey Live Coverage (14 May): A "Happy Ending" for 2 Journalists, But Kurdish Problem Remains

Syria (and Beyond) Live Coverage: 30 Die as Protests Continue

1645 GMT: The establishment of an “International South Azerbaijani Turks' National Council” has been announced in Ankara.

Cemal Mehmethanoğlu, the spokesperson of the council, declared:

Our ultimate aim is the independence of Turks living in ‘Southern Azerbaijan.' But we seek independence by democratic, peaceful means, not through the use of weapons.

1430 GMT: There has been a clash between Turkish soldiers and PKK members in the province of Diyarbakir. Last week, Veysel Celik. Justice and Development Party (AKP)'s chairman of the Kulp district of Diyarbakir had been kidnapped by PKK members. Two village guards are reportedly wounded.

1200 GMT: In response to the demands of public servants for a 16 percent increase in monthly wages, Minister of Labour and Social Security Faruk Celik had stated on May 1 that the proposals were on the table and had continued

You will demand, as a necessity of democracy, and we will try to give you what you want. We will give less or more than you want, but we will solve this.

However, the government offered much less than what was expected. According to this offer, 3+3 percent increase in the first year and 2+3 percent increase in the second year are offered. 

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Turkey Live Coverage (9 May): Kurds, Syria, Iraq, and the EU

1800 GMT: The Humanitarian Aid Association (İHH) says Iranian officials helped in determining the whereabouts of the two missing Turkish journalists in Syria.

1645 GMT: Speaking to reporters after the three-hour meeting, Parliament Speaker Cemil Çiçek said the drafting process would commence on Thursday. Political parties will create a catalogue of basic rights and freedoms on Thursday. He said: “The first step of this process is [to determine] basic rights and freedoms."

1625 GMT: In its the U.S.-Turkey Relations: A New Partnership report, the Independent Task Force of Council on Foreign Relations says that "Turkey may not yet have the status of one of Washington's traditional European allies but there is good strategic reason for the bilateral relationship to grow and mature into a mutually beneficial partnership that can manage a complex set of security, economic, humanitarian, and environmental problems." 

1600 GMT: Diyarbakir Dicle University's Rector Aysegul Jale Sarac complained about the insufficient number of academic personnel in the region and showed the 'label of terrorism' for professors' not choosing the eastern part of the country. 

1545 GMT: In response to speculations whether Tariq al-Hashemi will be returned to Iraq, deputy Prime Minister Bekir Bozdag said that they would not return someone they had given support to. 

1420 GMT: A specialist corporal was killed when he stepped on a land mine in a rural area of the province of Tunceli. An air-backed operation began immediately. 

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Turkey Live Coverage (30 April): Questions on the Syrian Front

1800 GMT: National Security Council (MGK) convened under the chairmanship of President Abdullah Gül.The meeting's main topic is thought to be Syria, its border with Turkey, other Middle East-related issues, the political crises in neighboring Iraq and the NATO summit. The MGK statement said:

We have drawn attention to the obligation to fulfil all requirements of the six-point Annan plan.

We think that problems in Iraq should be solved within the framework of pluralist democracy and rule of law principles and by restoring unity and solidarity of the country

1140 GMT: Istanbul's Mayor Avni Mutlu said that all the measures for the coming May Day were taken. More than 14 thousand security officers will be on duty on Tuesday.

1100 GMT: Four members of the outlawed Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) have been captured in the province of Sanliurfa by Turkish security forces. It is claimed that they were well trained in bombing and infiltrated through the Syrian border for an operation.

1045 GMT: Having blocked Israel's participation in NATO's new Partnership Cooperation Menu, Ankara says it will block EU participation in an upcoming NATO summit on Afghanistan taking in Chicago on May 20-21 unless the Organization of the Islamic Cooperation (OIC) is also allowed to be present. 

1000 GMT: In an explosion in front of the Istanbul Regional Directorate for the Ministry of Labor and Social Security, one person is injured.

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China This Week: Hu, Sarkozy Prep for G20; Stronger Ties with Europe; Beijing Tells US to Stay Out of Dispute with Japan

Hu, Sarkozy Prepare for G20:  Chinese President Hu Jintao and his French counterpart Nicolas Sarkozy met in the French Riveria last Friday to discuss reforms to the international monetary system, trying to coordinate their stance before the Seoul G20 summit.

France, which takes over the chair of the G20 group of leading economies in mid-November, has placed reform at the top of its agenda during its one-year tenure.

Chinese President Calls for Stronger Ties with Europe: Hu said on Tuesday that China attaches great importance to its relations with Europe and wants to strengthen ties with the region.

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China Economy Weekly: Beijing-ASEAN Trade; Rare Earths “Not Bargaining Instrument”; 12th Five-Year Plan

China and ASEAN Trade: Premier Wen Jiabao, speaking at the 13th China-ASEAN Summit in Hanoi, Vietnam has said China is determined to develop economic ties with the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).

Wen proposed that bilateral trade be increased to $500 billion by 2015, promising that China will make an effort to buy more from ASEAN countries. He also suggested setting up an Industrial Cooperation Mechanism within the China-ASEAN Free Trade Area framework to handle any problems and differences that arise.

Rare Earths “Not Bargaining Instrument”:  Beijing has said that it will not use rare earths as a diplomatic "bargaining tool", in response to challenges against its management of the vital metals.

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China This Week: Sino-Russian Partnership; Cooperation With EU, Beijing Going to the Moon

China, Russia Talk Energy, Security, Finance:  China and Russia have issued a joint statement on strategic partnership in energy. 

The two sides pledged cooperation on crude oil, natural gas, coal, electric power, nuclear energy, energy efficiency, and renewable energy, and they looked for a quick consensus on the construction of the Sino-Russian natural gas pipeline. The two sides agreed to promote the development of coal mines, supported by railway and port construction, and to work together on trading of electric power and grid enhancement.

In a statement signed by Chinese President Hu Jintao and Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, Beijing and Moscow called on Asian and Pacific countries to step up efforts to maintain regional security and stability amid mounting threats and challenges in the Asia-Pacific region.

Both sides also agreed to expand bilateral financial cooperation, including mutual trading between the renminbi (RMB), the Chinese currency, and the ruble.

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