ANKARA: Turkish Foreign Minister In USA To Boost Bilateral Ties

TURKISH FOREIGN MINISTER IN USA TO BOOST BILATERAL TIES

Anatolia News Agency, Turkey
Feb 4 2007

ANKARA (A.A) -04.02.2007 -"I believe that my visit to the United
States will further develop the cooperation between the two allied
countries in every area," Turkish Foreign Minister and Deputy Prime
Minister Abdullah Gul said on Sunday.

Gul left for the United States on a six-day formal visit as the guest
of US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice.

Holding a news conference at Ankara’s Esenboga Airport prior to his
departure, Gul said, "I will hold talks with US Vice President Dick
Cheney, Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and National Security
Adviser Stephen Hadley in Washington D.C."

"I will also meet US House of Representatives Foreign Affairs
Committee Chairman Tom Lantos and members of the Turkey-United States
Interparliamentary Friendship Group. I will deliver a speech at the
German Marshall Fund on Turkey’s future. I will meet Turkish-American
Council Executive Board President Brent Scowcroft," he told reporters.

"Later, I will proceed to New York on February 8th to meet with United
Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-Moon. I will deliver a speech at
the Foreign Relations Council on recent developments in Iraq and the
Middle East. I will return to Turkey on February 10th," he said.

Gul said that besides the bilateral relations, regional and
international issues would be high on agenda of his scheduled meetings.

"Kurdish, Turkish, Arab, Sunni, Shi’i, everybody in Iraq should come
to their senses and find a way to live together and fraternally on
their own lands," Turkish Foreign Minister and Deputy Prime Minister
Abdullah Gul said on Sunday.

Holding a press conference before he left for USA on a six-day formal
visit as the guest of US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice, Gul said
that they would share opinions on Iraq issue within the framework of
his talks in USA.

Stating that problems did not calm down in Iraq, Gul recalled the
bombing that took place in a Shi’i neighbourhood yesterday and said
that the disturbance should not spread to other cities within the
country.

Upon a question on whether he would have a message for USA regarding
Syria and Iran’s will to participate in the process concerning Iraq,
Gul said, "our opinion on this issue is known. In order for all the
neighbours to play positive roles in this process, meetings should
be held with them and their contributions should be accepted".

-FIGHT AGAINST TERRORISM-Replying to a question on whether the "fight
against terrorism" would be discussed during his talks in USA, Gul
said the issue would be an important branch of the meetings.

-ALLEGATIONS OF SO-CALLED GENOCIDE-In his reply to a question on the
recent resolution on so-called Armenian genocide, introduced to the
US House of Representatives and Turkey’s endeavours on the issue,
Gul noted, "you have to tell the others both your truth and the
history’s truth on this matter".

Gul, who said "informing, enlightening, telling the truth is our duty",
stated that many MPs from the Turkish parliament would contact several
US Congress members in order to explain "the true side of this issue"
to them.

Commenting on the study of "Joint Historians Commission Proposal",
Gul stressed that serious studies continued concerning such suggestion.

-SHARED VISION DOCUMENT-Upon a question on the latest developments
regarding the "Shared Vision Document", Gul said the document envisaged
close cooperation, working together and exchange of opinions on many
issues and added that they were carrying out countless joint studies
on this issue.

-CYPRUS-On the other hand, replying to a question on whether Cyprus
would be on the agenda of his meeting with UN Secretary General Ban
Ki-moon, Gul said, "we will desire Ban Ki-moon to endorse the studies
conducted on Cyprus issue previously and especially to support his
assistant Gambari’s activities and to be attached firmly to the issue".

-SAMAST’S IMAGES-Moreover, upon a question on whether the images of
Ogun Samast, suspect of journalist Hrant Dink’s murder, caused any
tension between institutions, Gul said, "there should not be any
tension. All these institutions are the institutions of Turkey".

Gul stated that these institutions should work hard, cooperate and
be in great solidarity.

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