In a message sent to President Ashraf Ghani Ahmadzai of Afghanistan on the occasion of the 100th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Türkiye and Afghanistan, President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan said, "Developments in Afghanistan are closely related to the security and stability of the region. We closely follow the developments in friendly and brotherly Afghanistan. We hope that the peace process which aims to put an end to the ongoing conflicts of more than 40 years succeeds."
President Erdoğan's message was read by the Ambassador of Türkiye to Kabul Oğuzhan Ertuğrul at the celebration ceremony held in Afghanistan.
Stating in his message that even though diplomatic relations between the two countries have a 100-year history, the brotherly ties between the two nations date back longer, President Erdoğan said, "The two nations share a common history and culture united around Mevlana's understanding of tolerance."
In his message, President Erdoğan pointed to the necessity of developing these relations in every field and conveying them to future generations and said, "Afghanistan always has a special place in the heart of the Turkish nation. This affection started with the Seljuk Empire and further developed after the proclamation of the Republic. Both countries always stood by each other in good and bad times."
President Erdoğan's message also included the information that Afghanistan has a special place in Turkish history due to its support in the War of Independence and for being one of the first countries to recognize the Grand National Assembly of Türkiye (GNAT) government.
Indicating that Türkiye was the first country which opened an embassy in Kabul, President Erdoğan added, "The appointment of Fahrettin Pasha, the hero of Madinah Defence and one of the most important figures in our history, as the ambassador to Kabul is another indication of the special ties between us."
Stating that "Prayers recited in the mosques of Afghanistan following our victory of the War of Independence are still in our minds", President Erdoğan noted that bilateral relations further improved together with the proclamation of the Republic.
Underlining that a great number of teachers, doctors and military officers went to Afghanistan during that period upon the instructions of Mustafa Kemal Atatürk and that they took part in the establishment of modern institutions in the country, President Erdoğan stated that "Kamil Rıfkı Urga, one of those doctors, served in Afghanistan for long years and laid the foundation of Kabul Medical University".
Touching upon the development assistance provided by Türkiye in Afghanistan, President Erdoğan continued as follows:
"Türkiye stands by Afghanistan today as well. Development assistance that we provided to Afghanistan surpassed 1.1 billion dollars. This amount stands among the largest development assistance provided by our country to another country. This amount displays the precious place of Afghanistan in the hearts of the Turkish public. Our projects regarding education, health and infrastructure touch the lives of the Afghan public. Over four thousand students have been educated in our country so far. Scholarships we awarded establishes the bridges of brotherhood between the two countries."
Highlighting that Türkiye also supports Afghanistan's security and stability within the scope of the NATO-led Resolute Support Mission, President Erdoğan stated, "Developments in Afghanistan are closely related to the security and stability of the region. We closely follow the developments in friendly and brotherly Afghanistan. We hope that the peace process which aims to put an end to the ongoing conflicts of more than 40 years succeeds."
Stressing that the Afghan public's expectations will be met through fair and sustainable peace, President Erdoğan added, "This will boost our happiness on the 100th anniversary of the establishment of diplomatic relations between Türkiye and Afghanistan."
Noting that Türkiye is also willing to see Afghanistan at the centre of regional connectivity projects, President Erdoğan said, "We will continue to stand by Afghanistan, our friend and brother, on this path and work devotedly to further improve deep-rooted relations between our countries in every field".