UPDATE - Türkiye to continue to stand in solidarity with Iraqi Turkmens

UPDATE - Türkiye to continue to stand in solidarity with Iraqi Turkmens

Foreign Minister Hakan Fidan meets with leaders of Iraqi Turkmen Front, prominent members of Iraqi Turkmen community

ADDS DETAILS OF MORE MEETINGS OF TURKISH FOREIGN MINISTER

By Muhammed Enes Calli and Zehra Nur Duz

ISTANBUL, ANKARA (AA) – Türkiye will continue to provide support to Iraqi Turkmens, Turkish Foreign Minister Hakan Fidan said Wednesday.

He emphasized that Iraqi Turkmens are in no way a source of instability, division, fragmentation or terrorism in Iraq, saying: "We want to express that Türkiye is and will continue to be behind these efforts and initiatives."

Fidan met with the leaders of the Iraqi Turkmen Front (ITF) and prominent members of the Iraqi Turkmen community at the Turkish Embassy in Baghdad.

Expressing his satisfaction with the meeting, he highlighted that Türkiye sees Iraqi Turkmens as one of the most significant bridges between the two countries.

Türkiye has been persistently and systematically working for years to address the discrimination and injustice that Iraqi Turkmens have long faced in Iraq, Fidan said.

"We will continue our relations with our Turkmen brothers in a way that serves the territorial integrity, political unity and stability of Iraq as much as possible."

He added that the contributions of Turkmens to Iraqi politics and society are beyond all forms of appreciation.

ITF chief Hasan Turan noted that Fidan's visit is “important for both the Iraqi and Turkmen communities."

He added that they hope this visit will strengthen relations between Iraq and Türkiye.

Turan noted that bilateral contacts will contribute -- even if only to some extent -- to the alleviation of the issues faced by Iraqi Turkmens.

After the meeting, Faruk Abdullah Abdurrahman, a former ITF president, presented a 120-year-old Ottoman dagger as a gift to Fidan.

Later on Wednesday, Fidan, who is in Iraq on a three-day visit, also met with Falih al-Fayyadh, chairperson of al-Hashd al-Shaabi, Nouri al-Maliki, former prime minister of Iraq and leader of the State of Law coalition, Ammar Al-Hakim, head of Hikma National Movement, Mohammed al-Halbousi, Speaker of the Council of Representatives, and his Malaysian counterpart Zambry Abdul Kadir.

Ahead of his meeting with Iraqi Turkmens, Fidan held talks with his Iraqi counterpart Fuad Hussein, Iraqi Prime Minister Mohammed Shia al-Sudani and President Abdul Latif Rashid as well as the leader of the Fatah Alliance, Hadi Al-Amiri, and Iraqi Sovereignty Alliance leader Khamis al-Khanjar.

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