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Home / Press review / Archive / Press review | 22/07/2015



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IS terror reaches Turkey

Hundreds of demonstrators gathered in Istanbul, blaming the government's Syria policy for the attack. (© picture-alliance/dpa)


There are increasing indications that IS fighters are behind the suicide bomb attack in Suruç, Turkish Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu said on Tuesday. Ankara must finally join forces with the Kurds against the IS, some commentators urge. Others praise the AKP government's efforts against IS terror.

La Vanguardia - Spain

Reach out to PKK

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan must bite the bullet and finally start working together with the banned Kurdish People's Party (PKK), the conservative daily La Vanguardia urges: "The PKK has renounced violence and its struggle for an independent Turkish Kurdistan. It wants a political solution, an autonomous region or federal state. There can be no doubt that it is a far more reliable dialogue partner than the caliph of Al-Raqqah Governorate. The Kurdish People's Protection Units (YPG) are also the only ground troops that - backed by US air strikes - have managed to drive back the IS in Syria. Erdoğan must assume his responsibility within Nato and, as the EU's preferred ally, lead the fight against the IS. Turkey would benefit from his doing so." (22/07/2015)

Tages-Anzeiger - Switzerland

Kurds are key in fight against IS

Ankara must finally recognise that it has been fighting the wrong people, writes the centre-left Tages-Anzeiger: "The biggest enemy is always anyone else - just not the Islamic State. Only recently the government sent more troops to the Syrian border. There has been talk of an invasion. A change of course? Not at all. The government fears the Kurds - who are getting stronger, have gained control over large swathes of northern Syria and may strive for independence in Turkey too - more than it fears the IS. That is why Ankara is preparing for war. Erdoğan refuses to accept that the Kurds are key in the fight against the IS. … The Turkish president can only be successful together with the Kurds  - in the fight against the IS and within his own country." (21/07/2015)

Sabah - Turkey

AKP not responsible for bombing

The Turkish opposition and anti-government media condemned Turkey's ruling AKP party on Tuesday, saying its Syria policy was partly to blame for the suicide bomb attack. The pro-government daily Sabah says this is unfair and praises the government's stance against terror: "President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has harshly condemned the terrorism and its perpetrators. … In a democratic regime there is no place for an organisation like the [banned Kurdish] PKK. A democracy rejects a gang of murderers like the IS and sees its existence as something dangerous. … In this situation Turkey's true power lies in society's commitment to democracy. That will guarantee that the country, which has saved almost two million [Syrian] refugees, remains stable and peaceful." (22/07/2015)

Dagens Nyheter - Sweden

No one is safe from IS terror

Turkey and all Europe should be on high alert after the Suruç bombing, stresses the liberal daily Dagens Nyheter: "No matter what the logic is behind Turkey's lax stance towards IS, Monday's events have shown that the Turkish leadership misjudged the situation. … 'This attack is aimed at Turkey,' Prime Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu said on Tuesday. The country has now been forced to realise that it is no exception within the region. The IS won't leave Turkey in peace. But the same clearly goes for all Europe - particularly if you see the attack in connection with the Bosnian intelligence service's suspicion that a jihadist training camp is being set up in the north of the country. This is a nightmare the EU must take seriously." (22/07/2015)


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The Guardian - United Kingdom

Cameron's anti-terror talk is pure paranoia

British Prime Minister David Cameron gave a speech on Monday in which he accentuated the threat posed by the IS and promised a crackdown against Islamism. The centre-left Guardian dismisses Cameron's words as fear-mongering: "David Cameron maintained that confronting Islamic extremism is 'the struggle of our generation'. We must pursue this struggle in the spirit with which we 'faced down Hitler'. Yes, Islamic extremism is real. Yes, it creates genuine problems and presents genuine threats. But to claim it as the struggle of our generation suggests a total collapse of perspective. … Diet, smoking, alcohol, loneliness, the slow collapse of the NHS, child poverty, air pollution, traffic accidents, lack of exercise, even the wrong kind of bedroom slippers are likely to kill far more people in this country than Islamist terrorists will manage. …The nations least threatened by Isis rank this risk the highest. This is media-driven madness, an epidemic of transcontinental paranoia that governments are happy to foment and exploit." (21/07/2015)

De Volkskrant - Netherlands

Refugee compromise a small breakthrough

The centre-left daily De Volkskrant takes a look at the compromise reached by the EU member states on the distribution of 55,000 refugees: "It is becoming increasingly clear that European asylum policy can no longer be conducted at a national level. The problem cries out for international coordination. Perhaps even for European immigration centres on the borders where asylum applications can be processed immediately. One thing is sure: a better and more humane European approach can only be achieved at the expense of national powers. But leaders with the political courage to explain this to their citizens are lacking. Yet some progress has been made. … For the first time EU states are showing genuine solidarity and upping the pressure on reluctant countries." (22/07/2015)

Sputnik Brasil - Brazil

Global perspectives: Europe lacks a vision for the future

The EU's decision makers seem to lack any real strategy and are simply postponing the problems in the Greek crisis instead of dealing with them, Antonio Gelis Filho, professor of international politics at the Gétulio Vargas Foundation comments in an interview on news website Sputniknews Brasil: "An exit from the Eurozone would be an extremely traumatic and dramatic measure for Greece. Europe's search for a solution has come to a standstill and the decision makers seem to be postponing it in the hope that the problems will somehow resolve themselves - which will indeed probably happen, but in a very brutal way. … People tend to believe that those in power make sensible decisions even if we don't agree with them. And I get the impression that the decisions in Europe are aimed solely at solving the immediate problems under discussion at a given summit. I simply don't see anyone who seems to have a clear vision for the future of the EU." (20/07/2015)


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The Irish Times - Ireland

Greek crisis: For Fintan O'Toole there is no Eurozone crisis

The euro crisis is dividing Europe because the individual countries' experience of it varies greatly, columnist Fintan O'Toole comments in the centre-left daily The Irish Times: "There is no euro zone crisis. It's impossible to understand what's going on now if you start out with the assumption that there is a single community of nations experiencing the same historic moment. There isn't. If, for example, Germany seems detached from the sufferings of the more peripheral euro-zone countries, it's not because Germans are hard-hearted. It's because their own current experience is not of crisis but of bonanza. The euro may look like a disastrous project for Ireland or Greece but in Germany it's an enormous success. The euro's weakness has been a jackpot for Germany. It has made German exports, especially to China and the US, much cheaper than they would have been otherwise. ... The result is that we have one part of the euro zone all too aware that it is living at a moment of historic crisis and another - the one that calls the shots - floating along on a sea of amnesia. And this is deeply dangerous for the European Union." (21/07/2015)

Corriere della Sera - Italy

Greek crisis: For Federico Fubini Athens is a plaything for apologists

For some time now the crisis in Greece has served only as a symbol used by politicians and intellectuals to strengthen their own arguments, comments economist Federico Fubini in the liberal-conservative daily Corriere della Sera: "Nobel laureates like Joseph Stiglitz or Paul Krugman persist with their predictions that the agreement won't hold and that the euro will collapse. … They use good arguments, but they present them with such insistence that one suspects a certain impatience behind them. Because if things do go really wrong this would serve as confirmation that they were right with their neo-Keynesian theories against cutting spending. … This is true not just for Stiglitz and Krugman, but also for the politicians of anti-system parties like Podemos leader Pablo Iglesias in Spain or Beppe Grillo in Italy. … For a long time now Greece and its drama have served as a symbol for others. The concerns about eleven million Greeks play a secondary role." (22/07/2015)


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Der Standard - Austria

Greek crisis: ECB is the wrong whipping boy

The centre-left daily Der Standard picks apart the accusation that the ECB has broken the government in Athens by freezing emergency loans for Athens before the referendum, thus forcing the banks to close: "This criticism is not so wrong, but it is levelled at the wrong people. … The ECB can keep throwing the safety ring until it looks as if it might get its money back. This makes sense because all member states of the Eurozone are liable for the obligations of the euro system. But the upshot of the referendum was that the other euro countries want Greece's ongoing bailout programme to stop. This increased the likelihood of a chaotic Greek bankruptcy. The ECB had to take action. So it was not the central bank but the finance ministers of the remaining euro countries that pulled the plug." (20/07/2015)

Ouest France - France

New markets for France's dairy farmers

French dairy farmers in the North of the country have been blocking roads since Sunday to protest the declining prices of their products. For Brittany's regional paper Ouest France, the milk industry has more power than appears at first glance: "The supermarket chains' claim that they are defending consumer interests imposes a deadly logic. It weakens whole swathes of the country and ends in unemployment. But the farmers are also to blame. … French farmers today are strong enough to refuse to let dairy cow farmers raise their prices and too weak to defend themselves against pressure from retailers. … But farmers do not have to take this sitting down. Tomorrow they could become the stars on the market for canteen food, benefitting from the consumers' appetite for fresh local produce." (20/07/2015)


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Die Welt - Germany

Families don't need state subvention

The German Federal Constitutional Court on Tuesday overturned the controversial child care subsidy, because the Federal State is not responsible for such regulation. This money, to the value of 150 euros, was given to parents of small children, who were not using state child care. Now family support in general needs scrutinising, demands the conservative daily Die Welt: "The debate is typically German - and somewhat ludicrous. How can 150 euros a month be seen as appropriate pay for parenting? Conversely, such comparatively modest family support will not have enough of an impact that women would make their career plans dependent on it. … But because Father State likes to play at being generous and spread questionable good deeds among families, he has to reach into the parents' pockets in other places, with ever increasing taxes for example, or social security contributions. If fathers and mothers were left more of the money they had earned themselves, there would be no need for further featherbedding by the state!" (21/07/2015)

Gość Niedzielny - Poland

Poles should refuse to recognise the ECHR

The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) in Strasbourg on Tuesday condemned Italy for refusing to give rights to same-sex couples. The Catholic portal Gość Niedzielny is up in arms: "Poland should refuse to recognise this court any longer. … This European system for controlling human rights is feeble. If some prisoner complains that his cell is too small, they bow down before him. That may be fair enough, because even a prisoner has rights. But when things of any import go to Strasboug, then the judges are often hostile towards human rights, family values or religious freedom. This includes questions such as abortion, assisted dying or in this case, homosexual marriage." (22/07/2015)

Ziare - Romania

More civic courage to stop violence against women

Around 200,000 people in Romania have signed a petition for the arrest of seven teenagers accused of having abused and raped a girl in November 2014. The judges ordered their release from prison after just a few months in custody. With a view to the upcoming trial, journalist Ioana Ene Dogioiu in the news portal Ziare doubts the efficacy of the online petition: "Lynch justice does not exist. Thankfully people's courts are a thing of the past, and justice is now decided in courtrooms - by judges who respect the law. … Yet one thing remains unclear: on the one hand the citizens are showing a strong sense of justice in this rape case. That's a good thing! Yet when women are attacked in the middle of the day on busy streets, no one intervenes. This is exactly what happened to a young woman in Bucharest and no one gave a damn. We would be a much better society if people showed more civic courage in such cases." (21/07/2015)

Etelä-Suomen-Sanomat - Finland

Referendums turn into a circus in Finnland

In Finland critics of a law passed in winter on same-sex marriage have initiated a referendum to try to overturn it. The initiative received the necessary number of signatures and now has to be dealt with in parliament. The liberal daily Etelä-Suomen Sanomat is frustrated that a recently passed law is already in question: "Referendums are a good means of exerting influence and are part of direct democracy, but they should not mutate into a circus event. The initiatives should not become a vehicle for protest for people who are not happy with the law. Laws are passed after extensive and meticulous debate and consultation by experts. The reasons for their existence do not change overnight. Of course parliament can make poor decisions, but before people demand changes, they should wait to see how the laws bear out in practice." (22/07/2015)

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