MIDEAST MIRROR 15.06.15, SECTION C (TURKEY & IRAN)
1-From today’s Turkish press
NEW SYRIAN REFUGEE CRISIS: Mehves Evin charges the government with indirectly aiding ISIS in centrist Milliyet: "Only those with hearts of stone would remain unmoved in resorting to arms and water cannon so as to drive back civilians escaping from ISIS and pouring into Akcakale [Turkish border town with Syria]. Only those in denial would say that there is no humanitarian crisis here. By sending back the civilians escaping from Tal Abyad, and keeping Akcakale open for the passage of jihadists, Turkey is willingly or unwillingly supporting ISIS."
Celal Baslangic accuses Ankara of manipulating the refugee issue in independent online T24: "The reason why Turkey accepted two million Syrian refugees was that it was seeking to win a card to influence the whole world and persuade the West to topple Syrian President Assad by rescuing people fleeing from oppression, rather than merely a difficult humanitarian situation. But the number of refugees to be used against Assad has now exceeded Turkey's absorptive capacity. Otherwise, the country that has accepted millions of people, would not have made several thousand Syrians wait at the border for over two days - it would have shown those escaping from ISIS the same 'humanity' it has shown to those escaping from Assad."
Ufuk Ulutas asks the government’s critics to take a clear stance in centre-right, pro-government Aksam: "A campaign is being conducted against the government that has paid a political price for consistently opening the borders to civilians for four years - and it is being conducted by those who are asking: Why are you opening the borders? A decision should be made on whether the borders should be opened and whether civilians, regardless of whether they are Turcoman, Arab or Kurdish, should be allowed in. For those sharing pictures of ISIS terrorists in Syria and criticizing Turkish troops for doing nothing about this – do you want Turkish soldiers to enter Syria or not? My answer is clear: open the border to civilians, do not let Turkish soldiers enter Syria and prevent villages from being emptied. What about yours?"
Sevil Nuriyeva detects a great power game in centre-right, pro-government Star: "If Turkey can persuade Russia on the Syria issue, there will be serious progress. But Russia, too, uses the Syria crisis to apply pressure on the West, and especially the U.S. that is trying to manipulate Moscow. Thus, Russia in fact wants to use the Syria card and as a means of pressure against the West.”
COALITION SCENARIOS: Baskin Oran sees only one viable coalition scenario in centre-left Radikal: "The meeting between President Erdogan and former CHP [main opposition Republican People's Party] leader Deniz Baykal made my stomach turn. A CHP-MHP [Nationalist Movement Party] coalition should be formed immediately. The HDP [pro-Kurdish leftist alliance] should support this coalition from outside. This brings the total number of MPs to 292. This coalition will have only one function: to form a reform cabinet and repair the damage done by Erdogan over the past couple of years."
Orhan Bursali wonders what the CHP may have in mind in secular, Kemalist, Cumhuriyet: "There is no doubt that there will be coalition talks between the CHP and the AKP [ruling Justice and Development Party]. But the main tendency will be to try the CHP-MHP-HDP option and see how it goes. The MHP represents the main problem here. As always at critical times, it is highly likely that it will back the AKP and form a coalition against the HDP. When this option is exhausted, the CHP will talk about a coalition with the AKP. The main question here is this: why would the CHP want to be in government with the AKP? What is its goal?"
Ali Unal recalls the ruling party’s failures in moderate, pro-Islamic, pro-Gulen Zaman: "In the third era of AKP rule, the regime in Turkey unfortunately resembled a dictatorship. The AKP linked everything to the elections and winning them under the excuse of the 'will of the nation'. It tried to oppress people across Turkey via illegal acts. And with arbitrary subcontracts, it established a media that worked as its own. Over a short period of time, a regime that had already been only partly viable totally collapsed in Turkey."
2-From today’s Iranian press
NUCLEAR TALKS: Hard-line Keyhan harangues President Rowhani: "In a recent press conference, Mr Rowhani said he was not concerned but hopeful about the negotiations. He accused critics of benefiting from sanctions. Are the 130 new sanctions imposed over the last two years part of the same green dream garden that Mr Rowhani has been talking about? In pursuit of this dream he constantly attacks expert critics, claiming that they are opposed to people's wellbeing and the lifting of sanctions. If sanctions are weapons of hatred and hostility combined with a policy of deception and dishonesty, how can we believe that the same evil enemy will set aside its tools?"
Conservative Siyasat-e Ruz writes of shifting sands: "The U.S. and its allies have signed the Additional Protocol under special conditions. They have many plans for the future of the Protocol. Fundamental and extensive changes are expected to be introduced. If a country signs it, it does not mean that the current laws of the Protocol will apply in the future. Apart from the Additional Protocol, the issue of possible military dimensions is also being pursued by Americans and is linked to visiting military sites. This should be settled in the nuclear negotiations. If the Additional Protocol is to be agreed to, special conditions of Iran should be considered. Otherwise, the Protocol will not be good for Iran and its cost will be worse than those of the sanctions."
Reformist Mardom Salari expects a deal to bring conservatives nearer to reformists: "A nuclear deal, because of its impact on economic development, can have a significant role in reducing the gap between our traditionalist and modernist political elites. The economic experience of such a deal will gradually push traditionalist discourse aimed at gaining greater legitimacy towards the modernist discourse in favour of using the economic capacities of developed Western countries. It will reduce the gap between the two paradigms on cooperation with the West. In fact, the positive economic effects of a comprehensive deal will lead traditionalist elites to review their strategies toward the West and adopt an approach of cooperation to increase people's support."
ISIS: Conservative Khorasan reports: "Al-Raqqah province in northern Syria and bordering Turkey is the capital of ISIS. This region has been witnessing the advance of Kurdish forces over the past few days. Their strategy is to dominate the border regions and cut off ISIS. If it were not for Turkey's continuous financial, military and logistic support, the terrorists would never have been able to establish a war footing in Syria from the small area of territory they occupy. The advancement of Syrian Kurdish forces is a big defeat for ISIS and an even bigger disgrace for Turkey's government."
ANNIVERSARY OF ROWHANI'S ELECTION: Centrist Jomhuri-ye Eslami highlights achievements and suggests changes: "Two years have passed since Dr Rowhani was elected as president. Over these two years, his administration tried to avoid hasty decisions, sudden changes and provocations. They have largely been successful in their commitment to such conduct. In foreign policy, the government's general approach has been to reduce tension and avoid isolating Iran and incurring unnecessary costs and hostility. The government's strategy to create economic stability is also clear. The government should act with seriousness and firmness with destructive and illegal schemes against the government, especially in cases where the interests of the nation and the regime are compromised. Replacing the middle-level government managers could promote this agenda. According to estimates, more than 75 per cent of current officials are from the previous two administrations. Naturally, they will not be supportive of the policies of this government."
YEMEN: Conservative Hemayat accuses the U.S. of resorting to dirty tricks: "America, its allies in the EU and reactionary Arab countries have tried to ignore the clear realities in Yemen and depict an illusory image of it to the world. It has been suggested that the U.S. has asked the Houthis to go to Geneva and attend negotiations supervised by the UN. UN intervention in Yemen's domestic affairs and the passing of resolutions are not acceptable. The country's political groups are seeking to solve their problems by themselves. No one accepts UN intervention in the domestic political disputes of a country and to defend an illegal president who is not supported by the public."
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