President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and Prime Minister Imran Khan of Pakistan held a joint press conference at the Presidential Complex following their meeting.
Pointing out that they had the opportunity during their meeting to discuss military, economic, political and cultural relations between Turkey and Pakistan and to assess the possible steps to be taken in the future, President Erdoğan expressed Turkey’s pleasure over the Pakistani Supreme Court’s decision to recognize FETO as a terrorist organization as well as over the transfer of FETO-affiliated schools in the country to the Turkish Maarif Foundation.
Congratulating Prime Minister Khan on his electoral victory, President Erdoğan noted that this is Prime Minister Khan’s first visit to Turkey after assuming office in his country. Recalling that Imran Khan used to be an athlete that embraced triumphs for years on behalf of his country, President Erdoğan said: “I believe he will achieve new successes in politics, too.”
“TURKEY WILL CONTINUE TO STAND WITH PAKISTAN”
Describing Turkey and Pakistan as two brotherly countries that enjoy friendly ties dating back a long time in history, President Erdoğan said: “This brotherhood has overcome many hardships through the support lent to one another’s national causes at the most critical times. Turkey, as has been the case so far, will continue to stand with Pakistan.” Emphasizing that Pakistan, too, stands with Turkey, President Erdoğan pointed to the transfer of FETO-affiliated schools in Islamabad to the Turkish Maarif Foundation as the most visible beacon of the solidarity between the two countries.
Stating that they, during today’s meeting, reviewed all the aspects of the bilateral relations and that they expressed hope for the next round of the Turkey-Pakistan High-Level Strategic Cooperation Council Meetings to be held in Islamabad, President Erdoğan announced that the meeting would be held in 2019 with the relevant ministries undertaking the necessary preparations.
“THE AFGHANISTAN-PAKISTAN-TURKEY TRIPARTITE SUMMIT WILL ENABLE THE SOLUTION OF THE PROBLEMS”
Noting that the Istanbul Tripartite Summit of Turkey-Pakistan-Afghanistan will also resume and that President Ashraf Ghani of Afghanistan and Prime Minister Khan are positive about its continuation, President Erdoğan said that the summit meeting will be held in Istanbul after Turkey’s local elections scheduled for March 31, 2019.
Pointing out that they also discussed possible steps to take in the future for the bilateral trade volume to be raised to a level that is becoming of the relations between the two countries, President Erdoğan said they displayed determination to ensure that the free trade agreement is made ready for signature, with the relevant ministers instructed to that end.
Highlighting their efforts to incentivize Turkish businesspeople to be more active in Pakistan, President Erdoğan stressed that businesspeople will accompany him during the visit he will pay to Pakistan for the High-Level Strategic Cooperation Council Meeting in 2019, and said: “I know that Prime Minister Mr. Imran Khan will spare no efforts for the favorable business environment in Pakistan to be rendered permanent.”