UPDATE – Turkey: Justice, goodwill cooperation can fight terror


By Nilay Kar Onum and Handan Kazanci

ISTANBUL (AA) – Establishing peace in the world is possible so long as there is cooperation based on “justice and goodwill,” said Turkey’s parliament speaker on Wednesday.

Speaking at the opening of the TRT World Forum, which Anadolu Agency is serving as the global communications partner, Binali Yildirim said: “Realizing a world where everybody lives in peace, tranquility, and trust is possible [so long as] powerful countries forge cooperation based on justice and goodwill.”

The fight against terrorism is the primary area in which cooperation is needed, said Yildirim.

Telling how the terrorist PKK, which has the blood of 35,000 innocent civilians on its hands, has been operating on Syria soil under the PYD/YPG label, Yildirim criticized the U.S.' “open and direct” support for the PYD/YPG.

“Thousands of trucks loaded with weapons, missiles, and every kind of ammunition are being transferred to this terror organization,” he said.

“Cooperating with a terror organization can never be excused.”

He added: “Terror [groups] should not be financed by any means; arms and money should not be provided.”

As the PKK terror campaign has resulted in tens of thousands of deaths in Turkey, American support for its Syrian offshoot has long vexed Ankara.

Calling the PYD/PKK-led umbrella group, the SDF, a "reliable partner" in its fight against Daesh, Washington continues to provide it with arms and equipment, even as Turkey stresses its terrorist identity.

– Extradition of FETO terror group leader

Yildirim also blasted Washington's failure to extradite Fetullah Gulen, the U.S.-based leader of the Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETO).

“Everything is clear. He is the one who ordered the coup [attempt in 2016]. We have every kind of document and information but our friends, the country which we know as an ally, stand by idly.”

FETO and Gulen orchestrated the defeated coup of July 15, 2016, which left 251 people martyred and nearly 2,200 injured.

Turkey has long complained of U.S. slowness in responding to its request for Gulen’s extradition.

Yildirim also said that the EU is not active enough in working to tackle international problems.

“The EU’s approach to the world’s current problems is far from finding solutions,” he said.

Turkey is one of the countries paying the “biggest price” due to the ongoing civil war in Syria, the parliament speaker also noted.

“We’ve received our 3.5 million [Syrian] brothers with open arms and helped them hold onto life,” said Yildirim.

“Our understanding and belief required that we do this.”

-'Western policies splitting the world'

Also speaking at the opening ceremony, Ibrahim Eren, the head of national broadcaster TRT, said that he hoped that the forum will help solve longstanding global conflicts.

Eren warned that Western states’ increasingly “protectionist and unilateral policy choices” are deepen splitting the globe.

“We believe that the biggest hurdle to solving these problems is world fragmentation,” Eren said.

“For this reason, we will rethink how we can establish peace and security in a fragmented world.”

The two-day TRT World Forum, entitled “Envisioning Peace and Security in a Fragmented World,” brings together over 600 of the world’s leading opinion leaders, policymakers, academics, and businesspeople.

The “most pressing issues and challenges” across the world will be discussed during the two-day event.