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Alaturka Gazetesi

UPDATE – Turkey: Updating NATO's security codes 'inevitable'

UPDATES WITH MORE REMARKS OF TURKISH VICE PRESIDENT

By Jeyhun Aliyev and Gozde Bayar

ANKARA (AA) – Given the threats Turkey faces, updating NATO's security codes will be "inevitable", the Turkish vice president said Thursday.

Speaking at a public event in the capital Ankara, Fuat Oktay said that through its "historic agreement" with Libya on maritime frontiers in the Eastern Mediterranean, Turkey had made an "important contribution" to "sustainable peace".

He added that the Turkish parliament would vote on the Turkey-Libya deal on Thursday.

The Turkish vice president said that peace and Turkey-Libya fellowship will triumph in the Eastern Mediterranean with the parliament's vote.

On Nov. 27, at the Dolmabahce Palace in Istanbul, Turkey and Libya’s Tripoli-based Government of National Accord (GNA) signed the memorandum laying out the two countries’ marine jurisdictions.

Libya, an oil-rich country, has remained beset by turmoil since 2011, when longtime ruler Muammar Gaddafi was ousted and killed in a NATO-backed uprising after four decades in power.

The country has since seen the emergence of two rival seats of power: one in eastern Libya, to which military commander Khalifa Haftar is affiliated, and the Government of National Accord, which enjoys UN recognition.

The memorandum asserts Turkey’s rights in the Eastern Mediterranean in the face of unilateral drilling by the Greek Cypriot administration, clarifying that the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC) also has rights to the resources in the area.

Turkey, meanwhile, has consistently contested the Greek Cypriot administration’s unilateral drilling in the Eastern Mediterranean, asserting that the TRNC also has rights to the resources in the area.

Speaking about terrorism and irregular migration, the Turkish vice president said these issues have reached advanced levels, adding that no single country can solve the problem alone without cooperation.

"The NATO Leaders Summit, which was conducted in such an environment, has once again demonstrated the value of the alliance," he said.

He also reiterated that Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan during the summit called on allies to show a "common attitude towards terror".

"Turkey's borders are also the borders of NATO and attacks occurred in our region are directly related to NATO," he said.

Oktay went on to say that NATO allies will be much stronger on the basis of "sincere solidarity" against the common threat of terrorism.

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Politika

UPDATE – Operation Peace Spring in accordance with int'l law

UPDATES WITH REMARKS OF FOREIGN MINISTER, VICE PRESIDENT, PARLIAMENT SPEAKER, CHANGES HEAD, SPOT, LEDE

By Busra Nur Bilgic Cakmak

ANKARA (AA) – Operation Peace Spring is being carried out in accordance with international law, Article 51 of the UN Charter and UN Security Council Resolutions on fight against terrorism, Turkish foreign minister said on Wednesday.

"This operation is being carried out in accordance with international law, Article 51 of the UN Charter and UN Security Council Resolutions on fight against terrorism," Mevlut Cavusoglu said.

Cavusoglu's remarks came just after Turkish troops, Syrian National Army began Operation Peace Spring in northern Syria against PKK/YPG and Daesh terrorists.

With the operation, the region will be cleared of terrorists, Syria’s border security and territorial integrity will be guaranteed, displaced people will be able to return safely to their homes and peace and safety will prevail in the region, he added.

Turkey's Vice President Fuat Oktay said for his part: ''Our heroic army with Operation Peace Spring will secure our borders, bring peace and stability to east of the Euphrates and ensure Syrians return home safely.''

Mustafa Sentop, Turkish parliament speaker, said: ''Operation Peace Spring commenced by Turkey aims to ensure the stability of our region that the terrorist organizations desire to sentence to chaos.''

"Turkey is conducting an operation with the sole aim of achieving peace. By this operation, all the people of the region shall win," he added.

Sentop also said: ''Turkey has used all means of solution and negotiation against the threat of terror, but the terror groups formed in the south of Turkey have continued with their activities.''

"The sole purpose of the commenced operation is to eliminate the threat of terror against Turkey," he added.

Turkey on Wednesday announced launch of Operation Peace Spring east of the Euphrates River in northern Syria to secure its borders by eliminating terrorist elements, to ensure the safe return of Syrian refugees and Syria’s territorial integrity.

Turkey has said the terrorist group PKK and its extension the YPG/PYD constitute the biggest threat to Syria’s future, jeopardizing the country’s territorial integrity and unitary structure.

Turkey has also stressed that supporting terrorists under the pretext of fighting Daesh is unacceptable.

Turkey has a 911-kilometer (566-mile) border with Syria and it has long decried the threat from terrorists east of the Euphrates and the formation of a “terrorist corridor” there.

Turkey plans to resettle two million Syrians in a 30-km-wide (19-mi) safe zone to be set up in Syria, stretching from the Euphrates River to the Iraqi border, including Manbij. However, the presence of terror groups such as the PKK, PYD, and YPG risk its formation.

Turkey has rid an area of 4,000 square km (1,544 square miles) in Syria of terrorist groups in two separate cross-border operations. Since 2016, Turkey has conducted two major military operations in northwestern Syria — Operation Euphrates Shield and Olive Branch — to purge the region of the terrorist groups Daesh and the YPG, which is the Syrian branch of the terrorist group PKK.

The two operations were in line with the country’s right to self-defense borne out of international law, UN Security Council resolutions, especially no. 1624 (2005), 2170 (2014) and 2178 (2014), and under the right to self-defense under Article 51 of the UN Charter, while being respectful of Syria’s territorial integrity.

During Operation Euphrates Shield, Turkish forces neutralized 3,060 Daesh terrorists. Turkey has suffered greatly from Daesh attacks inside the country. More than 300 people have been killed in attacks claimed by Daesh in Turkey, where the terrorist group has targeted civilians in suicide bombings and armed attacks in recent years.

In its more than 30-year terror campaign against Turkey, the PKK — listed as a terrorist organization by Turkey, the U.S. and the EU — has been responsible for the deaths of some 40,000 people, including women, children, and infants.

* Muhammet Emin Avundukluoglu, Cagatay Zontur and Dilara Hamit contributed to this report from Ankara

Categories
Spor

4th Ethnosport Festival wraps up in Istanbul

By Emrah Oktay and Erkan Tiryaki

ISTANBUL (AA) – Turkey’s 4th annual Ethnosport Culture Festival at Istanbul's Ataturk Airport wrapped up on Sunday.

Attending the event, Turkey’s vice president said the festival could help attract more tourists to the historic metropolis of Istanbul.

"I wholeheartedly believe many people will come here to see and live this [festival]. They will fee the unity, solidarity and brotherhood," Fuat Oktay said in the festival’s closing address.

Oktay added that Turkey will build a People’s Garden at Istanbul's Ataturk Airport — superseded last year by the new Istanbul mega-airport — that will host many conventions and expos.

In 2018, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said a People’s Garden spanning 12 million square meters would be established at the airport — four times the size of New York's Central Park.

– Super Lig stars join festival

Football stars from Turkey’s top-tier Super Lig stars also came to the festival to try their luck at archery.

Uruguayan goalkeeper Fernando Muslera and Colombian forward Radamel Falcao, both from Istanbul powerhouse Galatasaray, and Turkey’s Emre Belozoglu and Kosovar forward Vedat Muriqi, from their crosstown rival Fenerbahce, all took up the bow and arrows.

This festival also featured oil wrestling matches, and Turkish grappler Ismail Balaban won the title.

The Ethnosport Culture Festival kicked off Thursday.

Organized by the World Ethnosport Confederation, the fourth annual festival had 16 nations participating, including guest country Argentina.

Nearly 1,000 athletes competed in the festival in 12 traditional sports, including archery, oil wrestling, belt wrestling, mounted javelin throws, mancala, and horseback archery.

Children also took part in 40 traditional children’s games and there were 60 handicraft workshops.

The event also presented a dazzling array of traditional cuisines from across the globe for festivalgoers to savor.

– Anadolu Agency support

Anadolu Agency, Turkey’s top news source, was the festival's global communications partner.

Senol Kazanci, the agency’s director general, visited the event on Saturday.

The festival featured a display of Anadolu Agency’s war journalism training.

Wearing steel vests and helmets, participants worked hard and had fun on a track set out by Anadolu Agency and the Turkish Police Academy.

They braved obstacles to finish the challenging track on time.

Anadolu Agency’s war journalism program is conducted in collaboration with the Turkish Police Academy, Turkish Armed Forces, and the Turkish Cooperation and Coordination Agency (TIKA).

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Alaturka Gazetesi

Schools in Istanbul to remain open on Friday, says Turkish vice president after earthquake

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Alaturka Gazetesi

UPDATE – ‘Turkey wants to be producer of new technologies’

UPDATES WITH COMMENTS FROM SELCUK BAYRAKTAR

By Cigdem Alyanak and Elif Kucuk

ISTANBUL (AA) – Turkish Vice President on Sunday said that Turkey wants to be producer of new technologies, not the market in technological transformation process.

Speaking at the closing ceremony of Teknofest, a technology and aerospace fair in Istanbul, Fuat Oktay stressed that more than one million visitors from all ages and professions attended the fair in its second year.

Oktay congratulated Selcuk Bayraktar, the chairman of the Turkish Technology Team (T3) Foundation, and his team for setting an example and for all their contributions to the fully independent Turkish technology.

“We strive to develop our domestic and national technologies in full mobilization to ensure that our country becomes competitive and independent in the field of technology and innovation,” Oktay said.

Oktay said that it was an invaluable pleasure to see the excitement of children and young people and their passion for innovation.

“Be part of our national technology movement in your dreams, make history and take the first step. From your first step, our state will always be with you; and the future of our national technology will be shaped in your hands,” Oktay added addressing young people.

This year, the festival hosted 17,373 teams competing in 19 different areas such as “flying car design competition”, “robotic designs”, and “model satellite competitions” Oktay said.

“2,000 teams and 10,000 contestants reached finals,” he added.

“During the competitions, teams were provided with a financial support of approximately 4,000,000 Turkish liras ($696,594) and those ranking the highest were awarded with 3,000,000 Turkish liras ($522,445),” he said.

Selcuk Bayraktar, for his part, said that Teknofest broke the world record with 1.5 million visitors.

“Our 50,000 young brothers and sisters, and the next ones will make our country a leader in technology,” Bayraktar said.

“Our young brothers and sisters here are the champions of technology. They will carry our country to the leadership in space, aviation and high technology in the world,” he added.

Istanbul Ataturk Airport hosted the six-day festival, co-organized by the Turkish Technology Team Foundation and the Industry and Technology Ministry. Anadolu Agency was the festival’s global communications partner.

The festival featured numerous activities such as aviation shows, seminars, workshops, a drone championship, contests and concerts.

* Writing by Busra Nur Bilgic Cakmak

Categories
Alaturka Gazetesi

‘Turkey wants to be producer of new technologies’

By Cigdem Alyanak

ISTANBUL (AA) – Turkish Vice President on Sunday said that Turkey wants to be producer of new technologies, not the market in technological transformation process.

Speaking at the closing ceremony of Teknofest, a technology and aerospace fair in Istanbul, Fuat Oktay stressed that more than one million visitors from all ages and professions attended the fair in its second year.

Oktay congratulated Selcuk Bayraktar, the chairman of the Turkish Technology Team (T3) Foundation, and his team for setting an example and for all their contributions to the fully independent Turkish technology.

“We strive to develop our domestic and national technologies in full mobilization to ensure that our country becomes competitive and independent in the field of technology and innovation,” Oktay said.

Oktay said that it was an invaluable pleasure to see the excitement of children and young people and their passion for innovation.

“Be part of our national technology movement in your dreams, make history and take the first step. From your first step, our state will always be with you; and the future of our national technology will be shaped in your hands,” Oktay added addressing young people.

This year, the festival hosted 17,373 teams competing in 19 different areas such as “flying car design competition”, “robotic designs”, and “model satellite competitions” Oktay said.

“2,000 teams and 10,000 contestants reached finals,” he added.

“During the competitions, teams were provided with a financial support of approximately 4,000,000 Turkish liras ($696,594) and those ranking the highest were awarded with 3,000,000 Turkish liras ($522,445),” he said.

Istanbul Ataturk Airport hosted the six-day festival, co-organized by the Turkish Technology Team Foundation and the Industry and Technology Ministry. Anadolu Agency was the festival’s global communications partner.

The festival featured numerous activities such as aviation shows, seminars, workshops, a drone championship, contests and concerts.

* Writing by Busra Nur Bilgic Cakmak

Categories
Alaturka

Turkey defense industry eyes full national development

By Mumin Altas</p> <p>ANKARA (AA) – Turkey is now meeting 65 percent of its defense needs through its own local and national defense industry, and it is eyeing further development, said the Turkish vice president on Saturday.</p> <p>&quot;It is essential that we use our own resources in an effective and productive way to make progress in the defense industry field,&quot; Fuat Oktay told a summit held by defense firm Turkish Aerospace Industries (TAI).</p> <p>Turkey has a rich history of arms technology from the Ottoman era to the War of Independence, and it maintains this trend to the present day, he said.</p> <p>Turkey, due to its geopolitical and geostrategic position, needs to improve its defense technologies, as dependence on foreign countries harmed Ankara in the past, said Oktay, citing malfunctioning drones and the arms embargo following Turkey’s 1974 Cyprus Peace Operation.</p> <p>Turkey has been working day and night to develop its own arms industry, particularly since the early 2000s, he said.</p> <p>&quot;In the defense industry, our local production rate increased from some 15 percent to 65. Using the experience we got with the ATAK [T-129] helicopter, for instance, we opened a whole new page with heavy-class attack helicopters,&quot; he said. </p> <p>&quot;In 2023, we will take our first national aircraft out of the hangar, and in 2026 it will be in the sky. In 2031 it will be in the inventory,&quot; he added.</p> <p>Turkey currently has more than 600 national projects in the field of defense technologies, he said.</p> <p>&quot;In 2002, we exported defense and aviation industry products worth $248 million, and by 2018, this figure had risen eightfold to over $2.035 billion,” he said, adding: “Is that enough? Surely not.&quot; </p> <p>Oktay stressed that Turkey's moves on national technology, in line with the country's long-term goals, would continue to improve and develop the defense industry sector in accordance with Ankara’s needs and aims.

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Alaturka

Turkish, Venezuelan VPs agree to bolster bilateral ties

By Mumin Altas</p> <p>CARACAS (AA) – Turkish and Venezuelan vice president on Friday agreed to bolster relations between their countries.</p> <p>Fuat Oktay met Venezuela’s Delcy Rordiguez to discuss bilateral economic cooperation. </p> <p>During the meeting, the duo agreed to increase Turkey's national flag carrier Turkish Airlines' flights to Venezuela.</p> <p>Turkish Airlines currently flies From Turkey to Venezuela three days in a week.</p> <p>Turkish Airlines, founded in 1933, flies to 306 destinations in 124 countries with its fleet of 332 aircraft including passenger and cargo planes.</p> <p>In addition, Oktay and Rordiguez also agreed that cargo flights to Venezuela should also begin.</p> <p>Oktay went to Venezuela to attend Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro's oath-taking ceremony on Thursday.</p> <p>The oath-taking ceremony was held in the capital Caracas for Maduro, who was re-elected last May.</p> <p>The 56-year-old leader first took office in 2013 after his predecessor Hugo Chavez died and will govern Venezuela for another six years.</p> <p>As part of his visit to Caracas, Oktay also met several officials from South America.

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Alaturka

Turkey’s vice president arrives in Venezuela

By Mumin Altas</p> <p>CARACAS (AA) – Turkish Vice President Fuat Oktay arrived in Venezuela’s capital late Wednesday to attend President Nicolas Maduro’s inauguration ceremony.</p> <p>Speaking to reporters after landing at Simon Bolivar Airport, Oktay said Turkey and Venezuela will have the opportunity to discuss bilateral relations and regional developments.</p> <p> After being welcomed by Venezuelan officials, Oktay expressed his happiness over the two countries' relations, which had made great progress recently.</p> <p>He said President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s historical visit to Venezuela in December took bilateral ties to new levels.</p> <p>Maduro is preparing to take his oath of office Thursday to start his second six-year term.

Categories
Politika

UPDATE – Turkish VP meets Sudanese president, parliament speaker

ADDS MEETING WITH OMAR AL-BASHIR; CHANGES HEADLINE, LEDE

By Mumin Altas

KHARTOUM, Sudan (AA) – Turkish Vice-President Fuat Oktay met on Wednesday with high-level Sudanese leaders in the East African country’s capital of Khartoum.

Oktay was accepted by Sudanese President Omar al-Bashir with whom he held a closed-door meeting.

He also met the country's Parliamentary Speaker Ibrahim Ahmed Omar to discuss means of enhancing cooperation between the two countries.

Speaking before Sudan’s national assembly, Oktay thanked Omar for his “hospitable” reception and expressed his pleasure with meeting representatives of the Sudanese people.

Pointing to Sudan’s “significant potential” in the agriculture and stockbreeding sectors, Oktay said that Turkey hopes to share its considerable experience in both fields with Sudan.

He also noted Turkey’s many energy and mining projects now underway in Sudan, pointing in particular to the restoration of Sudan’s historical Suakin Island.

“Our primary goal is to improve trade,” the vice-president said. “Bilateral trade [between Turkey and Sudan] currently stands at less than $500 million, which is low for countries with good relations at both the presidential and public levels.”

“All these projects will bring us closer to our goal,” Oktay said.

He went on to assert that Sudan’s national assembly, which enjoys oversight of the projects, must closely follow the progress of these initiatives with a view to serving the interests of the Sudanese people.

The Sudanese people, Oktay asserted, “are like brothers to Turkey”.

“We’re ready to share everything with Sudan, including experience and know-how,” he said. “We’re serious about doing business and our [Sudanese] counterparts share this seriousness.”

He added: “But we have to move faster if we want results.”

Omar, for his part, expressed his pleasure with hosting Oktay and his accompanying delegation.

He pointed out that Sudanese officials had promised to develop relations with Turkey during a visit to Khartoum last year by Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

“We are closely following developments in the region — and in Europe, Asia and Africa — and are aware of the role Turkey is playing,” Omar said.

“We hope Sudan will be Turkey's most important partner in Africa,” he added. “And we can achieve this by joining forces.”

Oktay is being accompanied on his visit by Turkish Agriculture and Forestry Minister Bekir Pakdemirli; Trade Minister Ruhsar Pekcan; Deputy Minister of Energy and Natural Resources Mithat Cansiz; Turkish Ambassador to

Khartoum Irfan Neziroglu; and Serdar Cam, chairman of Turkish aid agency TIKA.

*Ali Murat Alhas contributed to this report from Ankara