Edrogan, CNN Arabic's man of year
Photo: AFP
Assad takes 2nd place
Photo: Reuters

Edrogan CNN Arabic's man of year

While CNN's Arabic site honors Turkish PM for diplomacy, journalists criticize Edrogan's foreign policy on Iran. 'He is scared of angering Ahmadinejad,' columnist writes

Surfers on CNN's Arabic website have chosen their man of the year: Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan won the survey by a landslide, defeating his main competitor, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad.


The Dubai-based news site announced that 74% of the surfers voted for Edrogan, while 20% voted for Assad. The site credited the win to Edrogan's recent diplomatic achievements – including dealing with the Gaza flotilla debacle, strengthening of Turkey's position in Iraq and Afghanistan, mediating between Iran and the international community and attempting to solve the dispute between Syria and Lebanon.


Despite the honor bestowed upon him by CNN's Arabic readers, criticism of his foreign policy sounded from within Turkey. The Turkish newspaper Milliyet has recently published an article by journalist Mehmet Tezkan, who condemned Edrogan's clinging to his demand of an apology and reparations from Israel, while ignoring an ongoing problem on Turkey's Iranian border.


'Do only Israeli bullets have value?'

Tezkan wrote that more than 20 Turkish sheep herders were killed over the past year when they crossed the border into Iran following their flock, and were shot down by Iranian soldiers.


"Have you heard any response on the issue from our government, from our prime minister or from one of the ministers?" Tezkan wrote. "Has anyone screamed: 'You've killed our citizens, now apologize?' We didn't return our ambassador from Tehran. Is there a double standard?"


The day after the article was published, another article appeared in the newspaper Hurriyet, written by columnist Mehmet Yilmaz, who condemned what he called the "Turkish silence."


"The government is silent over it because apparently they don't want to anger (Iranian President Mahmoud) Ahmadinejad," he wrote. "Forget about reparations. Why doesn't the foreign minister call upon his Iranian counterpart to put an end to this? Do only bullets that come from Israel through bodies of Turkish people have value?"



פרסום ראשון: 01.02.11, 17:23
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