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MIDEAST MIRROR 06.07.15, SECTION C (TURKEY & IRAN)

 

1-From today’s Turkish press

 

COALITION SCENARIOS: Tarhan Erdem cautions against squandering the current parliamentary moment in centre-left Radikal: "As the various government formulae involving the current parliamentary picture are self-evident, heading to 'early elections' by closing the door to any coalition via irresponsible words and aspirations entails a new adventure. Our current parliamentary structure offers us a special opportunity; the problems that cannot be resolved by a one-party government can be addressed by this parliament. We should make sure that we do not lose this parliament. We can solve our problems with it."

Mehmet Tezkan explains President Erdogan’s opposition to a new coalition in centrist Milliyet: "If a coalition is formed, President Erdogan will be unable to practice a 'de facto presidency'. The power of Bestepe [the new presidential palace] will be nullified because Bestepe does not square with a parliamentary system! The president wants early elections for that reason. He believes that the people will return the AKP (Justice and Development Party) with a majority. Unless the president approves, PM Davutoglu's AKP cannot enter a coalition with any other party. It cannot do so against the president's will."

Orhan Bursali believes the PM’s political future is at stake in secular, Kemalist Cumhuriyet: "The election results have given power to Davutoglu to become a leader. Either a Davutoglu-led coalition will be formed or there will be an Erdogan early-elections government. If the latter materializes, the Davutoglu era might come to an end. He knows that! The coalition talks will have such significance for Turkey! The other parties should be aware of this as well."

Seyfettin Gurel makes a similar point in moderate pro-Islamic, pro-Gulen Zaman: "Both the CHP [main opposition Republican People's Party] and the MHP [Nationalist Movement Party] are strongly opposed to the president sharing executive power. To offer concessions on this issue would be against their nature. On the other hand, it is also impossible for President Erdogan, who has openly declared that 'he would not give up serving the people', to allow the AKP to establish a coalition government by offering such a concession. As Erdogan continues to be the indisputable leader of the AKP, it is very hard for Davutoglu to build a coalition under these circumstances, even though he may want to do so."

 

GREEK REFERENDUM: Gungor Uras maintains that the results of the Greek referendum will not stop the bargaining process with the EU in Milliyet: "The 'No’ votes represent votes of confidence given to Greek PM Tsipras. They represent a green light for Tsipras to continue to bargain with the EU, IMF and the European Central Bank. The ‘No’ votes are not intended to help the Greeks leave the EU and drop the euro in favor of the drachma. They represent a 'No' to the austerity terms demanded by the EU, IMF and European Central Bank! Despite the 'No', the talks between Greece and the EU, IMF and the European Central Bank will continue. Both sides will offer concessions."

Unal Cevikoz argues that a good agreement will serve Turkey as well in Radikal: "The 'No' vote does not entail a total rejection of the austerity policy. Under any circumstances, an agreement on a new debt structure will be required. While the EU will have to soften its terms, the Greek people will have to accept that a much more disciplined, restrained and stressful life is inevitable. If Greece remains in peace and stability as a proud neighbor that defends both Europe and its own future rather than becoming a divided and polarized society as a result of the referendum, this will also offer Turkey some relief on its way to the EU."

 

 

2-From today’s Iranian press

 

NUCLEAR TALKS: Conservative Khorasan comments on John Kerry's remarks: "As people waited for good news about the talks, they, instead, had to contend with John Kerry's remarks. If the Americans and their partners fail to provide the necessary guarantees for the time and mechanism of lifting sanctions; if the UN resolutions are not clearly annulled with the first steps; if the IAEA still wants to talk about Possible Military Dimension of our nuclear programme; a good deal would not be achieved for Iranians. If a good deal is not achieved, we will be upset, but the world will not end. John Kerry’s remarks were not only a response to those who are overoptimistic about the Americans and those who are overpessimistic about our negotiating team. They were also a reaction to Foreign Minister Zarif's video message. At a time when Europe is looking forward to lift the sanctions, when Moscow – after the Ukraine crisis - does not have to tolerate Washington, when America does not have a lot of time to honourably lift the sanctions; John Kerry's threat is just the outcry of a negotiator, who has to make difficult decisions."

Hard-line Keyhan repeats: "The P5+1, especially the U.S., have shown that they rank first in fraud and deception. Our opponents are pursuing the same tricks they used on numerous occasions and are trying to impose their illegal demands through a maze of texts. In order to reach a good deal, there are clear and unambiguous criteria. We will accept an agreement only when these criteria are strictly adhered to. Any agreement that does not observe our red lines is unacceptable and will be rejected." 

Moderate Iran sounds hopeful: "There are two major differences and a short time to conclude the talks. The first difference relates to the timing of the UN Security Council resolution that will be passed if an agreement is reached. The second has to do with the time frame for removing sanctions. The possible military dimension and the reversibility of sanctions have already been resolved." 

Conservative Hemayat is not buoyant: "The nuclear talks are close to the final step, even though issues, like the Possible Military Dimension, supervision of the IAEA and the Western insistence on an agreement without a signature, are still a challenge. The West wants to maintain the status quo where Iran is under brutal pressure and the talks do not achieve any results. The current situation is highly desirable for them, which is why they speak about extending the talks and intend to continue the stalemate." 

Reformist E'temad considers the domestic dimension: "Our domestic policy towards the imminent agreement is important. To maintain calm at home is no less a challenge than reaching a final deal. The two areas are inseparable and parallel. Preserving a possible nuclear agreement requires national determination." 

Hard-line Javan writes about Western games: "A collection of complicated components has resulted in an unclear atmosphere at the talks in Vienna. This is part of the West's intricate games against Iran in the talks. It is very clear that the West uses psychological tactics in order to exert more pressure on our negotiating team." 

Reformist Mardom Salari implies that the West has no option but to reach an agreement: "In the Middle East, with the exception of Turkey - whose foreign policy in the region is based on support for opposition groups, from the Muslim Brotherhood to ISIS - Iran is the only country not facing a security challenge. Even Turkey is involved in a war on its southern borders. Iran is a balanced and stable player in the region and is one of the leaders of the fight against Takfiris and extremist Salafis. The West knows very well that Iran's nuclear knowledge will not be destroyed by bombs. The imposition of strict sanctions did not stop our peaceful nuclear activities; they grew with greater speed. The only way left for the West is to talk, with the goal of reaching an agreement."

Reformist Sharq explains why the U.S. is being strict: "Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs and member of the American negotiating team Wendy Sherman has said 'We know that deception is part of the Iranian DNA'. This is the American view of Iran; nonetheless, they expect us to trust them! The Americans have decided not to trust the Iranian side and, therefore, they have gradually created stricter conditions for an agreement." 

Conservative Resalat hopes the West will cooperate: "U.S. diplomacy is focussed on interrupting the concentration of our negotiating team and manipulating our public opinion. So far the resistance and the vigilance of our negotiating team have overcome these attempts. Our hardworking and revolutionary negotiators have made every effort to prove the goodwill of our country in the talks. It is time for the West to apply its political will to reach a final agreement. It is clear that the responsibility for the consequences of the West's insistence on irrational stances will fall on the U.S. and its allies."

 

RUSSIA/IRAN: Reformist Arman is offended: "A Russian official has announced that following a nuclear deal with Iran, there will no longer be any justification for an American missile shield on Russia's borders in Eastern Europe. The Russians are using the Iran card. Iran has never been a threat to Europe and our defence doctrine is not offensive. The Russian position implicitly states that Iran was a threat to Europe. Our officials should take a stance against this position and state, once again, that Iran has never been a threat to any country."

 

SAUDI ARABIA/YEMEN: Centrist Jomhuri-ye Eslami paints a dire picture for the Saudis: "In a strategic mistake, the Saudi regime trapped itself in the Yemeni quagmire and it sinks deeper with each passing day. Riyadh will resort to anything that will result in an honourable exit from this swamp. The Saudis face bitter realities that would have remained veiled, if this war did not happen. The Yemeni war showed that Saudi policy of relying on supporters and allies is mistaken as witnessed in the Pakistani refusal to Riyadh's request to participate in the war. The revelation of severe weaknesses in the Saudi military, especially in ground combat, has increased the concerns of the ruling family. Even though Riyadh has a variety of advanced military equipment, it failed to deal with the Yemeni army and the people's militia, who have limited resources."   

 

 

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