Erdogan vows to boost bilateral relations with India

Turkey's president expected to meet his counterpart Mukherjee, Deputy President Ansari, PM Modi during his two-day visit

Erdogan vows to boost bilateral relations with India

World Bulletin / News Desk

Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan on Saturday vowed to further improve bilateral relations with India ahead of his official visit to the country starting Sunday.

In his remarks to the Indian channel WION, Erdogan vowed to boost relations with India, saying, “In my forthcoming visit, I believe our mutual deliberations will be enriched and they will be much more deepened. The trade volume between India and Turkey appears to around 6 billion dollars. But it is not in favour of Turkey. But I believe in the forthcoming months, on the basis of our win-win scenario, we can strike a much more favorable balance in our trade volume between our nations.''

We can take a greater step forward in terms of bilateral relations, he added.

Erdogan also raised concerns on the Kashmir question between India and Pakistan, saying, ''The relations between two nations are improving on a daily basis which makes me very happy. But this Kashmir question saddened us deeply. Because, I think, this is a question that upsets both of the countries. I believe, sorting out the question, which has not been settled for up to 70 years, will provide a relief for both countries.''

Erdogan went on to add that, “Extending conflict, extending question and carrying this question to the future will be unfair to the next generations because they will have to pay the price in the future. And right next to the prosperity of Kashmiri people we need security and stability in the South East Asia more and more. We don’t want to see this picture.”

Erdogan urges more open channels of dialogues to reach a solution. “We would like to contribute to the world peace. If we achieve this, I believe we yield very important results.''

Kashmir, a Muslim-majority Himalayan region, is held by India and Pakistan in parts and claimed by both in full. A small sliver of Kashmir is also held by China.

Since they were partitioned in 1947, India and Pakistan have fought three wars -- in 1948, 1965, and 1971 -- two of them over Kashmir.

Kashmiri resistance groups in Jammu and Kashmir have been fighting against Indian rule for independence, or for unification with neighboring Pakistan.

More than 70,000 people have reportedly been killed in the conflict since 1989. India maintains more than half a million troops in the disputed region.

Erdogan's two-day visit will be the first-ever official trip at the presidential level from Turkey to India in seven years.

The Turkish president will participate in “Turkey-India Business Forum” on the first day of his stay on April 30. He is also expected to meet his counterpart Pranab Mukherjee, Deputy President Hamid Ansari and Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Talks are expected to cover fight against terrorism, efforts to boost bilateral ties in economy and trade, the prevention of Fetullah Terrorist Organization (FETO) activity in India and the country’s membership in the Nuclear Suppliers Group (NSG).

Erdogan’s visit is expected to witness the signing of a cultural exchange program between the two countries as well.

India has the second largest Muslim population in the world.

The country is a member of Group of 20 and it is one of the BRICS countries -- the five major emerging national economies along with Brazil, Russia, China and South Africa.

Güncelleme Tarihi: 30 Nisan 2017, 09:23