Simon's Feed
Oct 18, 2010

Crisis over Iran atom work may peak in 2011: expert

ISTANBUL (Reuters) – The dispute over Iran’s nuclear programme risks turning into an all-out crisis next year unless Tehran shows seriousness in negotiations expected to resume next month with world powers, an expert on nuclear diplomacy said.

Iran could face further U.N. sanctions and its mounting uranium stockpile could prompt a military strike by arch-foe Israel, Mark Fitzpatrick, an Iran watcher at the London-based International Institute for Strategic Studies, told Reuters in an interview in Istanbul.

Sep 13, 2010

Turkey referendum win boosts Erdogan for 2011 election

ISTANBUL (Reuters) – Turkey’s ruling AK Party on Monday celebrated victory in a referendum on constitutional reform likely to boost its chances of winning a third term in power at an election due within 10 months.

No sooner had Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan declared victory in Sunday’s plebiscite than he stoked Turkish secularists’ worst fears by serving notice that the AK, whose roots lie in political Islam, would start work on a new constitution.

Sep 13, 2010

Turkey referendum win puts Erdogan in poll for 2011

ISTANBUL (Reuters) – Turkey’s ruling AK Party celebrated victory in a referendum on constitutional reform that was seen boosting its chances of winning a third term of single-party rule at an election due within 10 months.

No sooner had Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan declared victory than he stoked hardline secularists worst fears by serving notice that his AK party, whose roots lie in political Islam, would start work on a brand new constitution.

Aug 9, 2010

Turkey names top military chiefs after deadlock

ISTANBUL (Reuters) – Turkey’s staunchly secular military named a new head of the armed forces and army chief on Monday, ending days of uncertainty caused by allegations of plots to undermine Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan’s government.

Chairing a promotion panel dominated by military top brass last week, Erdogan had reportedly blocked the general in line to become army chief as he had been summoned by a state prosecutor to give testimony in a probe into an Internet campaign to discredit Erdogan’s government and Islamic groups.

Jul 28, 2010

Iran, U.S. send positive signals on nuclear talks

ISTANBUL/WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Iran and the United States sent positive signals on Wednesday about the possibility of fresh talks on the Iranian nuclear program, which Washington suspects aims to develop atomic weapons.

Iran has given an assurance that it would stop enriching uranium to 20 percent purity if world powers agreed to a proposed nuclear fuel swap, Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu told reporters in Istanbul.

Jul 25, 2010

Iran says nuclear talks after Ramadan

ISTANBUL (Reuters) – Iran will be ready to hold negotiations with world powers on its nuclear program after the month of Ramadan ends in early September, Foreign Minister Manouchehr Mottaki said on Sunday.

Separately, Mottaki said technical discussions could begin immediately in Vienna on the details of a proposed nuclear fuel swap and a letter to this effect would be delivered to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) on Monday.

Jul 25, 2010

Iran favors talks with EU after Ramadan – Turkey

ISTANBUL (Reuters) – Iran has expressed willingness to have talks with the European Union on its nuclear program after the month of Ramadan ends in early September, Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu said on Sunday.

He also said after a meeting with his Iranian and Brazilian counterparts that Iran would send a letter on Monday to the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) asking for a start to separate “technical” talks on implementing a nuclear fuel swap.

Jul 23, 2010

Turkish court orders re-arrest of plot suspects

ISTANBUL (Reuters) – A court in Turkey ordered on Friday the arrest, or in many cases re-arrest, of 102 people, including retired military commanders suspected of plotting to overthrow Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan’s government in 2003.

This year’s investigations into the alleged plot codenamed “Sledgehammer” shocked Turkey and aggravated tensions between the AK Party government and the secularist armed forces.

Jul 13, 2010

“Anatolian tigers” go where Turkey’s diplomacy leads

ASTANA (Reuters) – Turkish President Abdullah Gul likes to walk, and where he goes, businessmen often follow.

Gul likes the idea, probably more than his bodyguards, that the leader of a country whose foreign policy goal is to have no enemies and do business wherever it can is an unlikely target for anyone other than Kurdish militants back home.

Jul 7, 2010

Turkey’s president looks beyond European myopia

S AIRCRAFT (Reuters) – Peering out of his aircraft window at the energy-rich lands of Central Asia 35,000 feet (10,000 metres) below, President Abdullah Gul wondered how opponents of Turkey’s bid for EU membership could fail to see the big picture.

“Everyone knows Turkey’s biggest contribution will be in the field of energy,” Gul told Reuters on his way home from Kazakhstan, a country courted for its mineral resources by China, Russia and the West.