UPDATE - President Erdogan praises his party's alliance with MHP

UPDATE - President Erdogan praises his party's alliance with MHP

Turkish president says People’s Alliance between ruling AK Party, opposition MHP ‘important gain’ of country

UPDATES WITH MORE REMARKS BY ERDOGAN

By Fatih Hafız Mehmet and Muhammet Emin Avundukluoglu

ANKARA (AA) - Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan praised on Tuesday the People’s Alliance between the ruling Justice and Development (AK) Party and Nationalist Movement Party (MHP).

The People's Alliance between AK Party and MHP was formed in February ahead of the presidential and parliamentary elections in June, and continued in some forms between the two parties.

Addressing the group meeting of the AK Party at the parliament, Erdogan said his party wants to carry the alliance into future.

"We see the People's Alliance as one of the most important gains of our country recently, and we want to carry it into the future," Erdogan stressed.

The president said they never did anything which will harm the spirit of the alliance, adding that his party will not be involved in any action against it.

Speaking at his group meeting ahead of Erdogan, MHP leader Devlet Bahceli said that his party no longer seeks any alliance in the upcoming local elections in March 2019.

Respecting Bahceli's decision, Erdogan said each party should go their own way in the local elections, slated for March 31, 2019 across Turkey.

Erdogan added that diversity of views should not cast shadow on People's Alliance.

"We are in favor of continuation of People's Alliance," Erdogan told reporters following the group meeting.

He said they do not have any problem with People's Alliance, stressing that they "definitely" do not want the alliance to be harmed.

Regarding the next year's local elections, Erdogan said that AK Party and MHP will run their own candidates for the local elections.


- Istanbul Summit on Syria

During his speech at the parliamentary group meeting, Erdogan also addressed the upcoming Istanbul Summit on Syria between Turkey, Russia, France and Germany.

"I hope that [the summit in] Istanbul will be a serious step for prevalence of peace in Syria, especially in Idlib,” he said.

The Oct. 27, Erdogan will host a quadrilateral summit on Syria, which will see the participation of Russian President Vladimir Putin, French President Emmanuel Macron as well as German Chancellor Angela Merkel.

The president also recalled the inauguration of Turkey's biggest oil refinery, STAR, which was opened Friday in western Izmir province with the attendance of Erdogan and Aliyev as well as other top officials from both countries.

He said Azerbaijani state petroleum company SOCAR invested $6,3 billion for the refinery in Turkey.

The refinery will help Turkey to reduce its current account deficit by $1,5 billion.

On his last week's visit to Moldova, Erdogan lauded it, mentioning “fruitful meetings” with the officials.

The visit was the first presidential level visit by Turkey to Moldova in 24 years, and a High Level Strategic Partnership Council was established between the two countries.

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