Posted by Joshua on Wednesday, November 14th, 2007
Tuzmen: Turkey to open another border gate with Syria
The New Anatolian / Ankara
14 November 2007
Turkish State Minister Kursad Tuzmen said Tuesday that the sector that deserves priority in Turkish-Syrian relations is transportation and explained that Turkey aims to boost annual trade volume with Syria to 5 billion U.S. dollars during the next five years.
Tuzmen and Syrian Economy & Trade Minister Amir Husni Lutfi attended the first term meeting of Turkey-Syria Partnership Council in southern province of Mersin.
Speaking at the "Turkish-Syrian Business Forum" Tuzmen indicated that "a new border pass will be opened at Nusaybin/Kamisli at the Turkish-Syrian border."
Meanwhile, Syrian Economy and Trade Minister Amir Husni Lutfi said: "We are working to create a region full of peace and stability. Turkish-Syrian relations are important for the regional peace. We appreciate minister Tuzmen's efforts to develop Turkish-Syrian relations."
Turkey, Syria Said Rediscovered Bilateral Tie
BBC Monitor Euro:
2007-11-14 08:47 (New York)
Text of report in English by Turkish news agency Anatolia
["IF INCOME PER CAPITA RISES, WE CAN CONTRIBUTE TO GLOBAL PEACE, TUZMEN" – AA headline]
MERSIN (A.A) -13.11.2007 -Turkish State Minister Kursad Tuzmen said Tuesday that "if income per capita rises, we can contribute to global peace."
Tuzmen and Syrian Economy and Trade Minister Amir Husni Lutfi held a joint press conference following the "Turkish-Syrian Business Forum" in southern province of Mersin on Tuesday.
"Syrian-Turkish relations are viewed by Turkey as a regional development model. We have language, religious, cultural, geographic and historical ties with Syria. No matter what some circles do to block our relations, we have ties of brotherhood with the Syrians. We are two countries that have rediscovered ties in the 21st century. If income per capita rises (in the region), this would contribute to global peace," Tuzmen noted.
Meanwhile, Lutfi made a call to all Turkish entrepreneurs to come and invest in Syria.
The following story in Arabic from Syria-News says the Muhammad Hamshou, a very big-deal Sunni businessman, who was close to Bashar has had his money impounded. All I know about Hamshou is that he imported Apple Computers and Seadoo jet skis. He was frequently included in restaurant outings with Bashar in the 1990s. He is shy. His wife wears the hijab, but is liberal and shakes hands with men. Mudar Asad, the son of Rifaat, imported Yamaha jet skis so there was a friendly rivalry between him and Hamshou, the Seadoo importer. One day Hafiz Makhlouf, Rami's brother, who has recently been slapped with a US financial freeze for being a diplomatic channel between Nasrallah and Bashar, hurt his shoulder in a crash on his Yamaha. Rami and the others all laid into Mudar for selling crappy Yamaha jet skis. (We will try to find out more scuttlebutt on Hamshou and why he has fallen out with the government.
Addendum: Hamshou Industries has a 20% interest in a new Syrian-Iranian car-parts factory being build near Homs in Hessya, the official daily Tishreen reported on July 9.
The factory, the second of its kind in Syria, will have an annual production capacity of 15,000 cars and a preliminary cost of USD 50m. The project, which will be governed by investment Law No. 10 and its amendments, will be carried out by the Iranian Sigico Car Company and the Syrian Hamshou Trade Company. The latter contributes 20 percent to the project. The factory will initially assemble spare parts. It is expected to move to full local manufacture of all car parts by 2008.
“The project is a turning point in Syria’s industry,” Industry Minister Fouad Issa al-Jouni said. “The ministry supports all joint enterprises which contribute to the enhancement of Syrian-Iranian ties in different domains. The strong Syrian-Iranian ties must be embodied in projects that serve the policies and economies of both countries.”
In March, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad inaugurated the first Syrian-Iranian joint car manufacturing plant Siamco in Adra near Damascus.
About two years ago, it was rumored that Hamshou was buying land in Tadmour. Rami Makhlouf was also said to be buying land in large quantities there in order to build a large resort and hotel complex.
الحجز على اموال عضو في البرلمان السوري
أصدر الدكتور محمد الحسين وزير المالية السوري 19 قرارا بالحجز الاحتياطي على الاموال المنقولة وغير المنقولة لعدد من رجال الأعمال من بينهم رجل الأعمال وعضو البرلمان السوري محمد حمشو.
والغريب ان يكون قرار وزير المالية بالحجز بناء على اقتراح مديرية الجمارك العامة الا ان مدير الجمارك العامة نبيل السيوري العائد من رحلة عمل قال للصحافيين السوريين لدى الاصرار على سؤاله انه لايمكن التعليق على موضوع ليس مطلعاً عليه بعد ، والغريب ايضا ان تذكر الصحيفة بعض اسماء المحجوز على اموالهم بالرموز الاولى وبعض الاسماء بشكل كامل . وقالت مصادر سورية تحدثت اليها ايلاف انها شاهدت العديد من قرارات الحجز بحق رجال اعمال سوريين معروفين ومسؤولين كبار وابناءهم الا انها لم تطبق .
وأكدت صحيفة "تشرين" السورية الرسمية أن وزير المالية أصدر 19 قرار بالحجز الاحتياطي ذوات الأرقام 946/947/948/972/973/ تاريخ 31 /10 و/1/11/2007, وذلك على الأموال المنقولة وغير المنقولة العائدة للمخالفين وأزواجهم وهم:
1- شركة OTTOEK-TECH
2- جون إيكون بوبث مدير ما وراء البحار في الشركة المذكورة
3- محمد حمشو بن صابر
4- م . م
5- م .ح
Canadian Named to Head UN's Hariri Probe
By ALEXANDRA OLSON – 10 hours ago
UNITED NATIONS (AP) — The U.N. chief has appointed a former Canadian prosecutor to head a commission investigating the 2005 assassination of former Lebanese premier Rafik Hariri, according to a letter to the Security Council released Tuesday.
Daniel Bellemare replaced Belgian lawyer Serge Brammertz, who was nominated to head the Yugoslav war crimes tribunal in the Hague. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon made both announcements in two letters to the Security Council, which must approve the Brammertz appointment.
Arar's counsel argued that although the torture may have happened in Syria, the conspiracy by U.S. officials that allowed it to happen occurred here. Their actions, counsel argued, violated U.S. laws and the Constitution."
So as I sat in the New York courtroom on Friday, a room with a rich mahogany interior, I was perplexed and saddened. Being Syrian-American, I had always borne the stigma and burden of the strained relationship between the U.S. and Syria, of having grandparents and roots (very proud roots) from an "evil" country. Now, Syria and the U.S. were in cahoots, finally getting along — at least when it came to torture.
The two drastically different pools of students intersect at the secular Arabic Teaching Institute for Non-Arabic Speakers, tucked away on a back street behind a row of embassies in Mezze, a modern neighborhood.