The following are translations of excerpts from the Turkish press.

COUNTER OFFER FROM ISRAEL TO TURKEY'S APOLOGY DEMAND

Talks in Geneva by Yosef Ciechanover and Feridun Sinirlioglu reached a very sensitive point. Israel partly accepted to apologize officially but in return they asked Turkey should announce that the raid on Mavi Marmara has not been made with bad intentions. Jerusalem post commented on the situation as: Nethenyahu's work is so hard to convince Lieberman to accept this solution.

http://haber.gazetevatan.com/turkiyenin-ozur-talebine-israilden-karsi-oneri/345309/30/Dunya

HIGH-LEVEL COMMEMORATION

Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, accompanied by two ministers, will attend the commemoration ceremony to be held for the deceased musician Ahmet Kaya. On the other hand, Republican People's Party, or CHP, chairperson Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu has not decided on the issue yet.

Erdoğan said he would participate in the event together with Ministers Mehmet Şimşek and Mehdi Eker, while Kılıçdaroğlu noted that he would attend the night if his schedule was available. Erdoğan is expected to sit next to Ahmet Kaya's spouse Gülten Kaya and Rakel Dink, wife of the deceased journalist Hrant Dink, during the memorial ceremony.

http://haber.gazetevatan.com/siyasette-ahmet-kaya-acilimi/345249/9/Siyaset

SHOULD THEY FIND ANY MONEY IN SWISS BANKS, I WILL DONATE IT TO THE CHP, ERDOĞAN SAYS

Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan called the main opposition Republican People's Party, or CHP, the mouthpiece of global lies. "CHP should go and tour all the 300 banks in Switzerland one by one and find documents of alleged bank accounts. I will donate all that money and all my wealth to the CHP," said Erdoğan.

"They claimed in the past based on WikiLeaks allegations that I was the 8th richest prime minister in the world. The CHP should change its name to WikiCHP," Erdoğan said.

http://yenisafak.com.tr/Politika/?t=08.12.2010&i=291542

"WIKI CHP"

Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan lashed out at the main opposition Republican People's Party, or CHP, about the WikiLeaks allegations, at the group meeting of the Justice and Development Party, or AKP. "Since it is changing, may be it should change its name to Wiki CHP," said Prime Minister Erdoğan. "The main opposition is leaving aside everything and touting the allegations and delusions of foreign diplomats," Erdoğan went on to say.

"The CHP should tour the 300 banks in Switzerland one by one and document the alleged bank accounts. I will donate that money to the CHP. If we try to disprove all your allegations there will be no time left for us to serve the nation," he said.

Erdoğan said they would continue to assume a cautious position against the WikiLeaks allegations.

http://www.sabah.com.tr/Gundem/2010/12/08/erdogandan_isim_onerisi_wiki_chp

ISRAEL WILL APOLOGIZE, JEWISH LEADER SAYS

Deputy Chairman of the World Jewish Congress, Marc Schneier, said Israel will apologize for the Mavi Marmara incident on May 31 in which nine Turks were killed by Israeli troops. "Turkey and Israel are like a family. It is normal for members of a family to disagree with each other at times. The Turks and Jews share a magnificent history," Schneier said.

http://www.zaman.com.tr/haber.do?haberno=1062318&title=israil-ozur-dileyecek

ISRAEL PM SEES BETTER TURKEY TIES AS 'VERY IMPORTANT'

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu sees "great importance" in improving ties with Turkey as the two states seek to patch up shaky relations, an Israeli diplomatic source said Tuesday.

The comments came after Turkish and Israeli diplomats met for two days in Geneva in a bid to salvage ties, in deep crisis since a May 31 Israeli raid on an aid ship in which eight Turks and one American of Turkish descent were killed.

"Netanyahu sees great importance in improving these ties, but above all he's determined to see that IDF [Israeli Defense Force] soldiers and officers will not be open to lawsuits and arrests around the world," said the source, speaking on condition of anonymity.

http://www.hurriyet.com.tr/dunya/16477169.asp?gid=200

PAKISTANI PM GILANI SAYS TURKEY AND PAKISTAN TWO STATES WITH ONE NATION

Prime Minister of Pakistan Syed Yousuf Raza Gilani addressed the Turkish Parliament on Tuesday. Gilani said Pakistan was proud of Turkey's leadership in the global arena. We are two states with one nation, Gilani said.

http://www.zaman.com.tr/haber.do?haberno=1062316&title=gilani-tbmmde-iki-devlet-altinda-bir-millet-gibiyiz

APPRECIATION CEREMONY WITH STAR AND CRESCENT

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and President Shimon Peres thanked international forces that helped put out the biggest ever fire in Israel with a ceremony held in front of Turkish flags. President Peres hosted fire-fighters from 20 countries at his residence. "I thank you all for rushing to help us immediately and behaving bravely, and saving lives of the Israeli people," he said.

http://www.hurriyet.com.tr/dunya/16477169.asp?gid=373

TURKISH EXPERTS QUESTION TIMING OF PLANS TO ABOLISH MILITARY JUDICIARY

Legal experts remain cautious about the reason and the timing of the government's plan to eliminate the military judiciary, following the suspension of three generals. "The military courts have served successfully so far," says a former Justice Minister. "I think the timing and reasons behind such a move should be questioned."

The government's plan to eliminate the military judiciary and end the differentiation between military and civilian courts following the suspension of three generals has been met with suspicion by some legal experts who question its timing.

"I don't consider it the correct decision. As specialized courts, the military courts have served successfully and their decisions have all been satisfactory so far. I think the timing and reasons behind such a move should be questioned," former Justice Minister Hikmet Sami Türk told the Hürriyet Daily News & Economic Review.

The suspension of three high-ranking military officers by Turkey's interior and defense ministers for their alleged involvement in the "Balyoz" (Sledgehammer) case, which reportedly sought to topple the government, and the generals' subsequent appeal to the Supreme Military Administrative Court, or AYİM, to have the suspensions repealed, have sparked tension between the military and the government over the last few weeks.

AYİM rejected the generals' appeal for a stay of execution for their suspension Friday but Deputy Prime Minister Bülent Arınç's earlier remarks before AYİM's decision, in which he said lower-ranking military judges in AYİM would not be neutral in a case targeting their superiors, suggested the government already had concerns about the body.

Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and Parliamentary Constitutional Commission Chairman Burhan Kuzu signaled before AYİM's Friday decision that the government would likely make a constitutional amendment after next year's elections to eliminate the military judiciary and thus end the distinction between military and civilian courts.

The Military Court of Appeals could be incorporated into the Supreme Court of Appeals and AYİM could be restructured within the Council of State, according to the government's plan.

'Timing and reasons suspicious'

Pointing to the timing of such a move, Türk described the government's announcement of the project ahead of the AYİM decision as a form of pressure on the military judiciary.

"Such projects are voiced when the government remains unsatisfied with the military courts' decisions," Türk said, recalling AYİM's earlier decision on the three generals, who were not promoted in the Supreme Military Council, or YAŞ, August meeting.

"The military courts are specialized courts and they should fulfill their duties as separate courts as they do now," he said.

Ekrem Ali Akartürk, a professor of constitutional law at Yeditepe University, said the judiciary in the Anglo-Saxon system was unified but added that there were civilian and military judiciaries with their own courts in Continental European countries, including Turkey.

"There is no problem in restructuring the military judiciary within the civilian judiciary in terms of the principles of the rule of law, as long as the civilian judiciary remains immune to the interferences of the legislative and executive power in terms of a fair trial," Akartürk said.

"The government's move stems from a concern that the lower-ranking military judges at military courts can't be neutral in cases targeting their superiors because of the hierarchy in the military but the same concern is likewise valid for the civilian courts," Akartürk said.

"When you restructure the military judiciary within the civilian judiciary, the civilian judiciary should likewise be free from political influence. But I want to point out at this stage the recent constitutional amendments restructuring the HSYK [Supreme Board of Prosecutors and Judges] where the justice minister still keeps his presence as president," he said, noting the possibility that that such a presence could influence the civilian judiciary.

He also said a department of civilian judges within the Supreme Court of Appeals or Council of State could similarly specialize on military issues and handle those cases.

"But the disciplinary issues should be handled by the military courts themselves as the military courts are not supposed to be eliminated entirely," Akartürk said.

For retired Maj. Gen. Armağan Kuloğlu, the timing of the move is crucial.

"The military courts deal with issues concerning military personnel. There was no problem, or no problem was voiced, for the military courts until one or two years ago," Kuloğlu said.

"But the tone of criticism has increased recently, after the military courts didn't rule in line with the administration's expectations," he said.

"If such a project had been voiced five years ago, it could be discussed. They [the government] now see the military courts as an obstacle before them, just as they see the Turkish Armed Forces," he said.

http://www.hurriyetdailynews.com/n.php?n=experts-suspicious-about-timing-of-military-courts8217-integration-with-civilian-courts-2010-12-06

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