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Pope Makes an Appeal as Copenhagen Summit Approaches

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VATICAN CITY, DEC. 8, 2002 (Zenit.org).- John Paul II appealed to leaders of the European Union to accept applicant nations, on the eve of a key EU meeting.

\"I would like to invite you now to support with prayer the political leaders who will meet in Copenhagen in the coming days, Dec. 12 and 13, to conclude important negotiations related to the accession of new countries to the European Union,\" the Pope said today after praying the Angelus with pilgrims gathered in St. Peter\'s Square.

The Holy Father made his plea \"so this continent will be able to be enriched with the contribution of the cultural and religious traditions of nations that, throughout the centuries, have left a precious common legacy of civilization.\"
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Miss World 2002 Azra Akin from Turkey puts her hands on her crown ..

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LONDON (CP) - With beauty queen smiles firmly fixed in place, Miss World 2002 was crowned Saturday, just weeks after religious violence left more than 200 people dead and drove the pageant out of Nigeria.

Despite criticism from some who wanted the pageant cancelled, including London Mayor Ken Livingstone, organizers of the 52nd annual beauty contest never wavered in their determination to stage the event.
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Boucher: E.U. Should Give Date To Turkey As Soon As Possible

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WASHINGTON D.C. - U.S. State Department objected to the French-German plan which foresees EU's giving conditional date to Turkey for July 1, 2005. ''We feel strongly that Turkey should be offered an early confirmed date to begin accession negotiations and we're in contact with various other governments about that point of view,'' State Department spokesman Richard Boucher said in a news conference.
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Patriarch Mutafyan Goes To Italy

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ISTANBUL - Turkey's Armenian Patriach Mesrob Mutafyan went to Italy on Saturday to get support for Turkey's EU membership process. Speaking to reporters before his departure, Mutafyan said that he would meet with Pope John Paul II and state representatives in Italy, adding ''we will stress that EU is not a Christian club, but a society of common values and we will ask for the support of Vatican for Dec. 12.''
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Erdogan To Meet With Bush And Rice In U.S.

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General NewsWASHINGTON D.C. - AK Party leader Recep Tayyip Erdogan who will meet with U.S. President George W. Bush next Tuesday will also meet with Condolizza Rice, the National Security consultant of Bush.

Erdogan is expected to meet with the leading representatives of the Jewish lobby in Washington D.C. the same day.

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Berlusconi And Simitis: E.U. Should Open Talks With Turkey Before January 2004

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General NewsROME - Italian Prime Minister Silvio Berlusconi and Greek Prime Minister Costas Simitis said on Friday that EU should give a date to Turkey at Copenahgen summit to open membership talks with it before January 2004. Speaking in a joint news conference after their meeting, Berlusconi said that ''we particularly discussed with Simitis issues of Cyprus and Turkey. To fix a date for the beginning of the negotiations encourages Turkey to enact reforms for market liberalisation and human rights.'' He said delaying the discussions could wither Turkey's enthusiasm for the EU
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A private history

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Orhan Pamuk explains why he put his family's story into a historical novel Saturday December 7, 2002 The Guardian I'm always asked why I write historical novels. I have to be frank: I want to link myself with the past, though this cannot be explained very logically.
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U.S. Backs Turkey on Franco-German Proposal

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General NewsFri December 6, 2002 03:26 PM ET WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The United States, implicitly opposing a Franco-German proposal and risking accusations of interference in the European Union, said on Friday the union should give Ankara a date now for talks on Turkish membership.
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Why Turkey and Europe need each other

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OpinionsOn December 12, the European Union will meet to consider Cyprus' and Turkey's application for membership. The former's membership is virtually guaranteed, but Turkey's application has already produced a minor crisis in Europe, not least because of its connection to Cyprus. Once Cyprus becomes a member, not only will Turkey's leverage over the resolution of that island's bifurcated Greco-Turkish ethnic rivalry disappear, the EU will have also shown that it decisively rebuffed Turkey's efforts to hold Cyprus and the EU hostage to its own policies and application.
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Turkey rejects 2005 for EU talks

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The leader of Turkey\'s new governing party, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, has rejected a proposal to give the country a conditional start date of 2005 for its membership talks with the European Union.
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