ADDS STATEMENT BY CANADIAN GOVERNMENT
By Berk Ozkan
ISTANBUL (AA) - Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau held a phone conversation late Wednesday.
The two leaders discussed bilateral relations and regional issues.
Erdogan offered his condolences for the loss of Canadian lives following the accidental downing of a Ukraine International Airlines flight near Iran's capital Tehran, according to a statement released by the Canadian government.
The airline disaster claimed the lives of 176 people, 57 of them Canadian. Iran had inadvertently shot down the airliner shortly after it took off from Tehran's Imam Khomeini International Airport earlier this month.
"The Prime Minister thanked President Erdogan for Turkey’s assistance in facilitating Canada’s response to the tragedy, including the transit of family members of victims through Turkey," it added.
The two leaders agreed on a "credible and transparent" investigation into the incident, underlining that it must continue to provide justice and answers to victims' families.
Exchanging views on recent developments in the Middle East, Trudeau and Erdogan also agreed on the need for de-escalation and dialogue to reduce tensions, promote peace and stability in the region. They also discussed the importance of continuing the fight against ISIS/Daesh.
"The two leaders agreed on the importance of trade and people-to-people ties between Canada and Turkey. They discussed opportunities for investments and increased collaboration moving forward," the statement concluded.
*Beyza Binnur Donmez from Ankara contributed to the story