1-From today’s Turkish press


JUNE GENERAL ELECTIONS: Serkan Demirtas uncovers the ruling party’s ploy in centre-left Radikal: "We can say that there is climate of panic in the AKP (ruling Justice and Development Party). Or we can look at the picture from another angle, and see a propaganda tactic whereby the AKP is trying to create a fear that the 'good times are coming to an end' so as to raise its level of support up to 45 per cent and the number of its MPs to over 300. ‘Ok’, they are saying ‘we have learnt our lesson; do not break the established order; go and put your stamp on the lamp [the AKP’s symbol]’."

Mehmet Tez highlights the unpredictable youth vote in centrist Milliyet: "Over the last year since the August 2014 presidential elections, a million youngsters have become voters. Since the last general elections, 2.5 million new voters will be going to vote on June 7th. We are heading towards an election where there is an unbelievable struggle over every single vote. But no one knows if and how the 2.5 million youngsters will vote. If this number were to be added to a party’s already existing votes, it would allow it to come to power alone."

Mumtazer Turkone believes the AKP knows that it is on a losing streak in moderate, pro-Islamic, pro-Gulen Zaman: "Things are going bad for the ruling party. The growing objections and criticisms coming from the core of the party should be interpreted as an 'I told you so' mood, rather than an effort to improve something."

Mehmet Metiner suggests that the HDP [pro-Kurdish leftist alliance] has problems with its own constituency in centre-right, pro-government Star: "The HDP only damages the religious Kurds but the Kurds in general. The HDP, of course, has nothing to do with religious Kurds. As in the case of the CHP, the HDP has a secularist outlook that has its problems with religion and religious affairs. Looking at the HDP’s list, one sees various enemies of religion."

Akif Emre maintains that government is on hold in moderate, pro-Islamic, pro-government Yeni Safak: "During these days just before the elections, many of Turkey’s outstanding problems have been postponed until after June 7th.  No fundamental political decisions or those relating to the functioning of the state are possible until this is over."

Hasan Cemal senses the beginning of the end for the president and his ruling party on independent online newspaper T24: "Erdogan's attacks on the Dogan Media Group, its owner Aydin Dogan, and on Hurriyet newspaper and its writers are shameful. It is shameful in the name of democracy. It is shameful in the name of freedom of expression. It is shameful in the name of political ethics. So, June 7th will be the beginning of the end for Erdogan. Not only Erdogan's dream of a full presidential system, but the probability of the AKP coming to power alone is disappearing as well."

Gulay Gokturk examines the prospects for a coalition in centre-right, pro-government Aksam: "As the biggest party, the AKP can create a coalition with any of the three opposition parties. It is not known what kind of changes will happen within the HDP after the elections, but it is very difficult for it to become a coalition partner based on its current policy. Although CHP [Republican People's Party] leader Kemal Kilicdaroglu says 'there can be no coalition with AKP', it is possible for a party that is thirsty for power to alter its discourse after the elections and accept a coalition partnership. On the other hand, most people believe that the MHP [Nationalist Movement Party] is the strongest candidate for a coalition partnership.”



2-From today’s Iranian press


NUCLEAR TALKS: Reformist Arman asserts that the success of the talks should remain the focus: "The issue of the inspection of Iran's military facilities proposed by the West has been added by Arab countries and the Zionist regime. Iranian officials have stated repeatedly that they will not allow inspection of military sites. The talks may be delayed for such reasons, but it is unlikely for the sides to declare their failure as a result. If the talks fail, it will have consequences for both sides. A nuclear deal is necessary for the West, for the region and for Iran. The sides should negotiate the disputed issues and not allow the talks to be side-lined. If the West intends to resolve the matter, it should amend its positions." 

Conservative Hemayat does not expect a cure for all problems: "Some suggest that the removal of sanctions will resolve all economic problems! Economic issues such as foreign currency, liquidity, the cost of money, production, trade, inflation, recession, and money transfers are polyhedral. The role of international involvement in economic growth and the gross national product cannot be ignored. However, too much concentration on the outcome of the negotiations and linking the outcome of the talks to the resolution of economic problems is a major strategic mistake." 

Moderate Iran distinguishes between two types of critics: "Most Iranian critics of the talks support our peaceful nuclear policies and our nuclear negotiators. Their concern is that negotiations should protect our interests and that our red lines will be preserved. There are some critics, however, who shout that we have moved away from the goals of an agreement. If we pay attention to their reasons and remarks, we will come to the conclusion that, for them, reaching an agreement means surrender. They are not criticising the negotiations; rather, they are against any agreement." 


IRAN/U.S.: Conservative Resalat is graphic: "America's hand in the region and the world is under the axe of the Iranian nation. If we do not cut this hand, they will continually encroach on our independence, sovereignty and security just as they did over the past three decades. Iran will be liberated only if this hand is cut off." 


REGIONAL TIES: Reformist Sharq calls for revising ties: "The Muslim Brotherhood is in the geopolitical camp against Iran; there are also serious ideological differences with them. The recent stances of the leaders of Turkey and the Brotherhood show that they are cooperating with Saudi Arabia to maintain hegemony in the region. Iran should seriously revise its choice of regional allies, both state and non-state actors, by relying on realism rather than ideology." 


U.S./IRAQ: Conservative Khorasan is aghast: "The fact is that the Iraqi army lost Ramadi. Prime Minister Haidar al-‘Abadi has announced vast operations for taking back the city. How has ISIS been able to preserve its presence in the region since 2010? How is it possible for the Iraqi army not to be able to deal with this terrorist group through its oil revenues and weapons bought from various countries, including America and Russia? The alleged goal of the international coalition against ISIS was to end support for this terrorist group. U.S. Defence Secretary Ashton Carter should pay attention to the destination of weapons that are sent to some Arab countries and then provided to ISIS." 

Hard-line Javan is appalled: "The fall of Ramadi reveals the destructive role of Americans in fighting ISIS. The insulting remarks of Ashton Carter and Martin Dempsey have highlighted this role. Instead of meeting their commitments after being in Iraq for the past 12 years, the Americans allow themselves to insult the Iraqi nation and army in order to escape their own responsibilities." 


ISIS: Centrist Jomhuri-ye Eslami insists that ISIS is a Zionist creation: "With the expansion of the activities of Takfiri terrorist groups, especially ISIS in Syria and Iraq, it became clear that their supporters have long-term and dangerous plans for the entire region. The notion that the Zionists are behind these groups, especially ISIS, has become a certainty because their actions are fully in line with the objectives and interests of global arrogance and its regional ally, the Zionist regime. Muslim nations should note that though ISIS and other terrorist groups are a threat to the entire world, Islamic countries are their main backers. It is a trap the Zionists have laid for regional mercenary governments who have joined the terrorists. If these governments think that terrorist groups would remain loyal to them and secure their political ambitions, they are quite naive." 

Reformist E'temad examines: "ISIS has targeted the Arab world before posing a threat to Iran. The reason is obvious: ISIS and similar groups are too insignificant to stand against our country. The Islamic Republic has clear and declared objectives in the region and supports the stability of legitimate and legal governments and movements. ISIS is a regional and international project that has powerful supporters in the Arab world. Its main objective is to disrupt the borders of the Arab world and weaken its governments in order to boost the security of Israel and create an opportunity for the intervention of the big powers in the region." 


SYRIA/TURKEY: Reformist Mardom Salari blames Turkey: "12,000 terrorists in Syria from Turkey changed the battle-field situation in favour of the terrorists. The Syrians will never hold talks with terrorist groups who are not willing to give the slightest advantage to Bashar al-Assad’s regime. Therefore, the situation in Syria is moving towards gradual collapse. Most of the current problems arise from the Syria-Turkey borders. In fact, Turkey's government provides all the logistic and intelligence support to the terrorist groups. Until the Syrian government gains control over the borders, the situation will not improve. The events in Yemen, Iraq and Syria are part of an interconnected chain aimed at carrying out U.S. plans to fragment the Middle East."



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