By Nazlı Yuzbasioglu
BUCHAREST (AA) – Relations between Turkey and its “Black Sea neighbor” Romania have been carried to a new level during recent meetings, Turkey’s ambassador to Bucharest said.
In an exclusive interview with Anadolu Agency, Osman Koray Ertas said a trilateral meeting of Turkey-Romania-Poland foreign ministers was held on Tuesday in Bucharest.
These security-oriented meetings between NATO’s eastern flank countries “are also relevant mechanisms for our country’s relations with the EU,” said Ertas.
“Romania and Poland have traditionally supported Turkey’s accession to the bloc,” he added.
Cavusoglu paid a visit Romania on Sept. 11 to participate in the fourth meeting of political-military consultations among the foreign ministers of Turkey, Romania and Poland.
During the consultations, the three ministers have evaluated the results of the NATO Brussels Summit and exchanged views on the current security challenges in the Euro-Atlantic region.
“We see Romania, who is our neighbor over the Black Sea, as a friend, ally and strategic partner,” said Ertas, adding that the military officials of the two countries are “in close contact.”
Praising the 140-year relations between the two countries, Ertas worded Romania’s support for Turkey in the fight against the Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETO).
He said that Maarif schools were in the process of being opened in Romania in place of facilities run by the FETO terror group.
Turkey established the Maarif Foundation in 2016 to take over the administration of overseas schools linked to FETO.
FETO and its U.S.-based leader Fetullah Gulen orchestrated the July 15 coup attempt, which left 251 people martyred and nearly 2,200 injured.
Ertas also said that the presence of over 15,000 Turkish firms in Romania and the $6 billion trade volume between the two countries display the level reached in bilateral ties.
Efforts to reach the $10 billion trade goal continues, he added.