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Turkey Letter: March 12, 2018

Foreign Policy:

  • Afrin operation targets both YPG and ISIL: Turkish Chief of Staff Akar
  • Putin says he ordered Turkish passenger plane shot down before Sochi Olympics
  • Turkey asks Germany to catch culprits of mosque attacks: Foreign Ministry
  • Turkish FM Çavuşoğlu visits Russia to talk Syria in Joint Strategic Planning Group
  • S. moving to repair relations with Turkey, endangering ties with Kurdish allies
  • Turkey’s president slams NATO for lack of support in Syria
  • Watchdog: Western tech used for hacking in Turkey, Syria

Economy and Energy:

  • Moody’s takes action on Turkish banks, firms after sovereign rating downgrade
  • Turkey, Brazil energy investments could hit $440m by 2026: Envoy
  • Turkey plans to establish ‘national credit rating agency’ in 2018: Watchdog
  • Legal changes to boost investments go into force in Turkey
  • Turkish Billionaire Sahenk Holds Asset-Sale Talks

Domestic Politics:

  • Turkey’s parliament debates changes to electoral laws
  • Locals protest garbage dumping site amid health concerns in Bodrum’s Gümüşlük district
  • Istanbul taxi drivers protest Uber amid court hearing
  • CHP eases party leadership candidacy rules
  • CHP MP launches online petition against MHP-AKP legislative package

 

Foreign Policy:

 

Afrin operation targets both YPG and ISIL: Turkish Chief of Staff Akar

Turkey’s ongoing military operation in the northern Syrian province of Afrin not only targets the Syrian Kurdish People’s Protection Units (YPG) but also the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), Chief of General Staff Hulusi Akar said on March 12.

Hürriyet Daily News, Afrin operation targets both YPG and ISIL: Turkish Chief of Staff Akar, March 12, 2018


Putin says he ordered Turkish passenger plane shot down before Sochi Olympics

Russian President Vladimir Putin gave an order to shoot down a passenger plane he believed would be used in a terror attack at the Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics, he said in a new documentary.

Hürriyet Daily News, Putin says he ordered Turkish passenger plane shot down before Sochi Olympics, March 12, 2018


Turkey asks Germany to catch culprits of mosque attacks: Foreign Ministry

Ankara expects Berlin to catch the perpetrators of recent attacks on Turkish mosques in Germany, the Turkish Foreign Ministry said on March 11.

Hürriyet Daily News, Turkey asks Germany to catch culprits of mosque attacks: Foreign Ministry, March 12, 2018


Turkish FM Çavuşoğlu visits Russia to talk Syria in Joint Strategic Planning Group

Foreign Minister Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu is visiting Russia to participate in a meeting of the Joint Strategic Planning Group, which is a sub-organ of the Turkish-Russian High-Level Cooperation Council. The countries’ leading diplomats are expected to focus on the Syria issue during the talks.

Hürriyet Daily News, Turkish FM Çavuşoğlu visits Russia to talk Syria in Joint Strategic Planning Group, March 12, 2018


U.S. moving to repair relations with Turkey, endangering ties with Kurdish allies

In an effort to repair tattered relations, the Trump administration has told Turkey it will move to rein in Kurdish fighters who have been the backbone of the U.S. campaign against the Islamic State in Syria, according to U.S. and Turkish officials.

Washington Post, U.S. moving to repair relations with Turkey, endangering ties with Kurdish allies, March 10, 2018


Turkey’s president slams NATO for lack of support in Syria

Turkey’s president has criticized NATO for not supporting his country’s ongoing military operation against Syrian Kurdish fighters in Syria.

Washington Post, Turkey’s president slams NATO for lack of support in Syria, March 10, 2018


Watchdog: Western tech used for hacking in Turkey, Syria

A Canadian company’s hardware is being used to hack internet users along Turkey’s border with Syria, researchers said Friday the 9th, adding that there were signs that Kurdish forces aligned with the United States might have been targeted.

Washington Post, Watchdog: Western tech used for hacking in Turkey, Syria, March 9, 2018


Economy and Energy:

 

Moody’s takes action on Turkish banks, firms after sovereign rating downgrade

Moody’s has taken actions on 17 Turkish banks and nine Turkish companies shortly after its recent decision to downgrade Turkey’s government issuer rating to Ba2 stable from Ba1 negative.

Hürriyet Daily News, Moody’s takes action on Turkish banks, firms after sovereign rating downgrade, March 12, 2018


Turkey, Brazil energy investments could hit $440m by 2026: Envoy

The potential for bilateral energy expansion between Turkey and Brazil is evident with projections of $440 million in investments in energy infrastructure by 2026, Brazilian Ambassador to Turkey Eduardo Riccardo Gradilone Neto has said.

Hürriyet Daily News, Turkey, Brazil energy investments could hit $440m by 2026: Envoy, March 12, 2018


Turkey plans to establish ‘national credit rating agency’ in 2018: Watchdog

Turkey plans to set up a “national credit rating agency” this year, the head of the country’s banking watchdog has stated.

Hürriyet Daily News, Turkey plans to establish ‘national credit rating agency’ in 2018: Watchdog, March 12, 2018


Legal changes to boost investments go into force in Turkey

A law aiming to cut red tape and boost investments in Turkey has gone into effect after being published in the Official Gazette on March 10.

Hürriyet Daily News, Legal changes to boost investments go into force in Turkey, March 12, 2018


Turkish Billionaire Sahenk Holds Asset-Sale Talks

Turkish billionaire Ferit Sahenk is in talks with investors to sell assets including entertainment and restaurant businesses and may strike deals over coming weeks, according to people with knowledge of the matter.

Bloomberg, Turkish Billionaire Sahenk Holds Asset-Sale Talks, March 9, 2018


Domestic Politics:

 

Turkey’s parliament debates changes to electoral laws

Turkey’s parliament on Monday the 12th began debating a set of changes to the country’s electoral laws which critics say are unconstitutional, designed to help President Recep Tayyip Erdogan consolidate power and may lead to election fraud.

Washington Post, Turkey’s parliament debates changes to electoral laws, March 12, 2018


Locals protest garbage dumping site amid health concerns in Bodrum’s Gümüşlük district

Around 45 citizens living in the Gümüşlük district of the western Turkish resort town Bodrum came together to protest a garbage dumping site in the area, saying it poses a threat to public health and safety, Doğan News Agency reported on March 11. Hürriyet Daily News, Locals protest garbage dumping site amid health concerns in Bodrum’s Gümüşlük district, March 12, 2018


Istanbul taxi drivers protest Uber amid court hearing

A group of taxi drivers gathered early on March 12 outside Istanbul’s Çağlayan Courthouse to protest against Uber ahead of the second hearing of a lawsuit opened against the transport company by the United Taxi Drivers Association.

Hürriyet Daily News, Istanbul taxi drivers protest Uber amid court hearing, March 12, 2018


CHP eases party leadership candidacy rules

The main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) has implemented a new party bylaw following a two-day extraordinary congress, easing the conditions to present a candidate for the leadership post.

Hürriyet Daily News, CHP eases party leadership candidacy rules, March 11, 2018


CHP MP launches online petition against MHP-AKP legislative package

A main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) lawmaker has launched an online petition against a legislative package submitted by the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) and the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) after the CHP raised concerns over a provision about electoral security in the upcoming elections.

Hürriyet Daily News, CHP MP launches online petition against MHP-AKP legislative package, March 11, 2018