'Turkey can prove Islam, democracy can co-exist': FM

Responding to a question on a lawsuit filed to close the ruling Justice and Development (AK) Party, Babacan said that decision of the highest court in Turkey would be final and all would have to comply with it.

'Turkey can prove Islam, democracy can co-exist': FM
Turkish Foreign Minister Ali Babacan said that Turkish government was "trying to prove more and more that Islam, democracy and secularism can co-exist."

"We are supporting a truly democratic system in Turkey. We also support a secular system in Turkey which means a distinct separation between religion and the state," Babacan told in an interview aired on National Public Radio in the U.S.

Responding to a question on a lawsuit filed to close the ruling Justice and Development (AK) Party, Babacan said that decision of the highest court in Turkey would be final and all would have to comply with it.

"The Constitutional Court is being asked to judge if the actions of our party has been in line with the concept of secularism or not, although our constitution does not have any explicit description of what secularism is," Babacan said.

"As the ruling party, we have to move and we are moving on a very strong basis of legitimacy. We have conform with the rule of law, we have to very careful about separation of powers in Turkey, about the independence of the judiciary, and we have to protect the reliability of our courts," Babacan said.

Speaking on the fight against the PKK, Babacan said Turkey and the U.S. closely cooperated when Turkey launched its military operations against the PKK.

"And when these operations are close to the Iranian border, communication happens between Turkish and Iranian armed forces because these terrorists are existent very close to Iranian and Iraqi border," he said.

Responding to a question about Turkish-mediated talks between Israel and Syria, Babacan said indirect talks would continue until there was substantial progress.

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Güncelleme Tarihi: 08 Haziran 2008, 13:00
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