By Ecenur Colak
ROME (AA) - Sudanese foreign minister has hailed the “leading role” of Turkey in taking up the issues of the Muslim world, especially the effort against the U.S. president’s move to recognize Jerusalem as an Israeli capital.
Ibrahim Ghandour also mentioned the emergency meeting of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) following Trump’s Jerusalem decision and praised Turkish efforts in this issue.
President Recep Tayyip Erdogan had called an emergency OIC meeting shortly after Trump's Dec. 6 declaration on Jerusalem; Turkey later co-sponsored a UN General Assembly resolution to condemn the decision.
"That reflects the magnitude and effect of Turkey in its surrounding and international [arena] and its role in the OIC,” Ghandour told Anadolu Agency in the Italian capital.
Ghandour was in Rome as part of a conference titled “A Shared Responsibility for a Common Goal: Solidarity and Security”.
Hosted by Foreign Minister Angelino Alfano, the conference was held on Tuesday that saw attendance from 14 countries, including Bulgaria, Chad, France and Sudan.
“Turkey has got a leading role as far as Islamic issues are concerned,” he said.
“On OIC in Turkey, that has been very most reflected on the issue of Jerusalem following the decision of President Trump to move the American Embassy to Jerusalem in Israel.”
The Dec. 13 OIC summit in Istanbul declared East Jerusalem to be the capital of Palestine, while the General Assembly motion saw member states vote 128-9 in favor.
“So, they are doing a great job, we just value that,” Ghandour said.
About the ties between the two countries, Ghandour said he was content with the “excellence” in bilateral and political relations, adding Sudan hopes to boost economic relations further following Erdogan’s Sudan visit.
In December 2017, Turkish president paid a four-day visit to Sudan, Chad and Tunisia, which was dominated by business forums, and investment and cooperation deals.
Ghandour also said he would visit Turkey next week to attend the Turkey-Africa conference.
About the Operation Olive Branch, which Turkey launched on Jan. 20 to clear PYD/PKK and Daesh terrorists from Syria’s Afrin region, he said: “Each country has the right to protect its borders and people, and Turkey carries out this operation within the perspective of this interest.”
According to the latest figures, 999 PYD/PKK, Daesh terrorists have been "neutralized" since the operation began.