On the second day of a landmark state visit to Turkey, Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands traveled yesterday to central Anatolian city of Kayseri, where many of the 350,000-strong Turkish community in the Netherlands have their roots.
Foreign Minister Abdullah Gül, who returned from hectic and successive visits to Pakistan and Afghanistan on Tuesday, and his spouse, Hayrünnisa Gül, also accompanied the queen on her journey from Ankara to Kayseri, as well as in Kayseri.
Her meeting with a group of businesspeople from Kayseri took place at a facility owned by Boydak Holding located in the city's Organized Industrial Zone. Ten businesspersons from various sectors briefed the queen concerning their businesses and Kayseri's economic situation in general.
What Beatrix was curious about was the situation of labor rights and labor unions in the country. Expressing pleasure over the fact that she met there with female entrepreneurs, the queen said: "Are there micro credit opportunities and funds for new starter entrepreneurs or for women in particular? I'm also very interested in opportunities of micro credit."
Noting that she was impressed by what she learned at the meeting, the queen continued: "According to what I understand from what has been explained here is the fact that you expect too much from Europe. This is a very positive step along [Turkey's] European Union [membership] process. The approach which you have developed in Kayseri and of which you are deservedly proud shows that you can also contribute to Europe."
Later, before his departure for Ankara on a private plane, the queen met with a group of workers who are either still working in the Netherlands or who retired from their jobs in the Netherlands.
Around 1,000 police and 250 gendarmerie forces provided security during Queen Beatrix's three-hour-long stay in the city.
In the past, only days after formal launching of accession negotiations between Turkey and the EU, the EU's Enlargement Commissioner Olli Rehn had also paid a visit to Kayseri, which is also the hometown of Foreign Minister Gül. At the time, Rehn described the city as the heartland of Turkey.
Today's ZamanGüncelleme Tarihi: 20 Eylül 2018, 18:16