Iran-Turkey relations, strong and consistent
WANA (Mar 09) – Iran’s foreign minister, Hossein Amirabdollahian, visited the Turkish city of Adiyaman on Wednesday, in a show of solidarity with people affected by the powerful earthquakes that hit the country last month. He spoke with local officials and people affected by the devastating earthquakes and also visited a camp set up by the Iranian government to provide shelter, relief, and aid to the displaced people.
Before going to Adiyaman, the Iranian foreign minister met with his Turkish counterpart, Mevlut Cavusoglu. During the talks, Amirabdollahian once again offered the Islamic Republic’s condolences and sympathy with the Turkish government and people over the losses of lives in the recent quakes.
He said as soon as the news of the quake in Syria and Turkey emerged, Leader of the Islamic Revolution Ayatollah Seyyed Ali Khamenei and Iranian President Ebrahim Raeisi laid serious emphasis on delivering aid and relief services to the quake-stricken people, and that the entire Iranian nation and government became one with the friendly and brotherly nation of Turkey.
“Even though aid workers were providing relief to the earthquake victims in (the northwestern Iranian city of) Khoy, the Iranian Red Crescent Society (IRCS), the Army and the Islamic Revolution Guards Corps (IRGC) immediately entered Turkey’s earthquake-hit areas and provided their services ranging from search to support and relief operations. It is because we consider Turkey’s pain as that of ours,” he noted.
For his part, Cavusoglu appreciated Iran for the swift delivery of relief services and aid supplies to the quake-stricken people in Turkey after the disaster.
The expression of sympathy and aid delivery showed Iran is also a good brother to Turkey besides being a good friend and neighbor, he said.
The Iranian top diplomat also spoke on the restoration of relation between Ankara and Damascus.
“We welcome the return of Turkey-Syria relations. We were interested in working to resolve misunderstandings between Syria and Turkey. We welcome participation in any quadripartite format,” Amirabdollahian said at a joint news conference with Cavusoglu.
Powerful earthquakes in February claimed the lives of more than 52,000 people in southern Turkey and northwestern Syria and rendered millions of people in the two countries homeless.
Many countries, including Iran, dispatched rescue teams and aid to Turkey. Iran was among the first countries to rush to the aid of quake-hit people in both countries by sending tons of medical, food, and sanitary aid.
The two sides also discussed the need to expand bilateral relations as much as possible. They also evaluated the two countries’ joint cooperation in the fight against terrorism and terrorist groups as important and effective.
“Terrorism originating from Iraq’s Kurdistan region as well as the Daesh terrorism emanating from Afghanistan are among our common concerns,” he said. “We believe that terrorism is not good or bad, but an ominous phenomenon in any guise and form.”
He then made clear that within the framework of international law, Iran and Turkey reserve the right for a “legitimate defense against any terrorist act” from any direction and by any group.
Amirabdollahian stressed that the presence of the Israeli regime in the Caucasus region is among the important issues that should be considered seriously.
“Iran warns all parties to be vigilant about Israel and not let Israel’s presence in the Caucasus,” the top diplomat said.
The Turkish foreign minister welcomed Iran in joining the tripartite talks that took place between Russia, Turkey and Syria two months ago. Next week the deputy foreign ministers of these four countries will be meeting in Moscow ahead of planned talks between the foreign ministers.