By Sultan Cogalan

ISTANBUL (AA) – Turkey’s foreign minister on Friday received his counterparts from Latin American and Caribbean countries at a ministerial meeting to highlight dialogue and cooperation between Turkey and the region.

In opening remarks at the Community of the Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) Quartet 4th Foreign Ministers Meeting in Istanbul, Mevlut Cavusoglu said Turkey welcomed the group’s efforts to make the region ‘a territory of peace’.

“And Turkey supports these efforts,” Cavusoglu said.

The minister added Turkey was pursuing a humanitarian and entrepreneurial foreign policy across the world. “We believe that our cooperation will create positive results at a global level.”

He also noted Turkey’s “great” efforts to institutionalize dialogue and cooperation between Turkey and the regional bloc.

“Today, we are glad to sign a joint declaration on the establishment of Turkey-CELAC Permanent Mechanism of Cooperation,” Cavusoglu said.

Friday’s meeting is co-chaired by Cavusoglu and El Salvador’s Foreign Minister Hugo Martinez.

The 33-member nation group CELAC was founded in 2011 in Venezuela with the Declaration of Caracas. The group represents more than 600 million people.

El Salvador, Dominican Republic, Ecuador and Guyana constitute the quartet.

During the meeting, CELAC foreign ministers also congratulated the Turkish minister over “a democratic and transparent” referendum on April 16, according to a diplomatic source who spoke on the condition of anonymity.

Turkish voters went to the polls on Sunday to decide whether to approve changes to the country’s constitution that would usher in an executive presidency.

According to unofficial results, the Yes campaign won on 51.41 percent, while the No votes stood at 48.59 percent. Voter turnout was 85.46 percent.

The last Turkey-CELAC Quartet Meeting was held on the margins of the 70th General Assembly Meeting of the UN in September 2015 in New York.

Leave a Reply