ANKARA — Turkish President Abdullah Gul said on Wednesday that Turkey extended a great support to reconstruction of Somalia with its public institutions and people, a great example to the international community.
Gul and his Somali counterpart Hassan Sheikh Mahmoud held a joint press conference after holding a tete-a-tete meeting and chairing meetings between delegations in Ankara.
A new era has begun in Somalia, Gul said.
There were deep-rooted relations between Turkey and Somalia, he said.
Turkey launched aid campaigns for Somalia which suffered from famine, he said, stating that Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan accompanied by a crowded delegation visited Somalia last year and this visit boosted relations between the two countries.
Turkey had embassy in Somalia and Turkish Airlines was the only airlines flying to Mogadishu, the president said.
Gul said that 1,600 Somali students and undergraduates have been receiving education in Turkey.
President Gul said that Turkey cooperated with Somalia in regard to establishment of armed forces and police department in Somalia.
Prior to the press conference, Turkey and Somalia signed agreements on military and financial cooperation.
World reflected their conscience on Palestine
Gul said regarding Palestine’s gaining the non-member observer state status in the UN that, “This is actually the reflection of the world’s conscience. I hope those who voted ‘no’ will take a lesson out of this.”
Replying to a question on Israel’s announcement of establishing new settlements, Gul said, “Establishing illegal settlements, in other words building houses in someone else’s property is blocking the peace process. Many European countries have also warned Israel. I hope Israel won’t do this as it would have serious consequences that will definitely take place against themselves.”
Gul said that he did not want to make any comment regarding the lifting of the political immunities of nine Peace and Democracy Party (BDP) MPs and one independent MP Aysel Tugluk and added, “Many issues beyond our intentions are raised. People try to take out different meanings from our words and I am disturbed by this.”
Gul also answered the question of whether Syria had the risk of becoming Somali if no measures are taken and said, “When comparing countries let’s not forget each are unique in their own way. Somali is composed of people from the same race, religion and sect and they speak the same language. The problem of Syria is their regime living in the past.”
sources The Journal of Turkish Weekly