We seek serving whoever they are: Turkish deputy PM
Turkish Deputy PM Hakan Çavuşoğlu Thursday stressed the Turkish policy of contribution to enhancing human life and economic development in different countries worldwide through Turkish concerned establishments, highlighting the Turkish role in this regard in Africa, Jerusalem and Rakhine.
This came in a televised interview broadcasted Thursday on the Turkey-based official TRT television channel in Arabic.
RELATIONS WITH SUDAN
Responding to a question on Turkish relations with Sudan, Çavuşoğlu stressed the deep-rooted relations with Sudan, reflected by several cooperation projects, he referred to a recent development project on the Suakin Sudanses Island. The Project, supervised by the Turkish Cooperation and Coordination Agency (TIKA), is for developing the island and has nothing to do with any military purposes, referring to other restoration projects in the country such as the restoration of the Ali Dinar complex in the al-Fashir area.
He also pointed out that Turkey through TIKA established supportive projects in the agriculture field in Sudan.
Turkey goes to these countries in order to develop them and for the welfare of its people, economically, by developing the capabilities of their country, he said.
TURKISH SUPPORT FOR SOMALIA
Answering a question on the Turkish role in Somalia, the Turkish deputy PM described Somalia as a "bleeding wound for us and for the Muslim world," regarding to wasting its capabilities over wars which continued for years and caused the death of lots of Somali youth. He pointed out that the tensions in Somalia "are still ongoing till today" .
He referred to the Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan's visit to Somalia in 2011 during which the country was suffering drought, explaining that, the visit shaped a new phase in the country as the visit drew the world's attention back to Somalia as it became clear that success in Somalia could be materialized, he added, describing the Turkish president's 2011's visit as "historical".
On the Turkish supportive projects in Somalia after the 2011's visit of the Turkish president to the country, Çavuşoğlu referred to several projects to rebuild the war-torn country, such as the establishment of a military training center in Somalia, from which Somali military personnel graduated to join the Somalian army and contribute to protect the Somali state's security.
Also the Turkish deputy PM refered to a TIKA-supervised project for rebuilding the roads in the capital Mogadishu [35 kilometers-length] which have been damaged due to the war.
Çavuşoğlu also pointed out that, Turkey has learned from Somali officials the need to establish a building for the Somali parliament referring to a TIKA-overseen project to establish a new parliament's headquarters, as well as the establishment of a school of agriculture arts.
"Turkey has implemented projects in Somalia worth one billion dollars under the supervision of TIKA alone," he said.
JERUSALEM IS A RED LINE
Answering a question on the Turkish stance towards the recent development in Jerusalem and recognition of it as Israel's capital by the current U.S. administration, Çavuşoğlu said that, "The city of Jerusalem is a red line for all the Muslims of the world", stressing that, "The city is not affiliated to the Jews alone. The Christians, Muslims and Jews have common values in the city of Jerusalem and therefore the de facto policy is not a success and it is not correct policy to impose [there]," he said.
"Therefore, President Erdoğan has emphasized this on more than one occasion and that Palestine and Jerusalem are bleeding wounds for us and all the Muslims of the world, our brothers there suffer a lot of violations. They are under occupation. TIKA works in Jerusalem to alleviate the suffering of the Palestinians (..) through various projects," he added, giving the example of the project of the restoration of the Aqsa mosque carried out by Turkey as well as the restoration of 320 Palestinian houses destroyed by Israeli bombardment.
THE SITUATION IN RAKHINE
Answering a question on the current situation in Rakhine and the Turkish supportive role in there, Çavuşoğlu said that, "The Rohingya Muslims were subjected to a great genocide ... It was a very ugly bloody scene and the president of the Republic [Erdogan] went there and met the officials there [in Myanmar].
Mrs. Emine Erdoğan also went to Bangladesh and saw the conditions of the refugees there and drew the attention of the world to their suffering, he added.
Turkey invited the United Nations to take care of this matter (…) We saw the mothers crossing the river and the sea and their children drowning, he said in reference to the fleeing Muslim Rohingya over violent attacks by Buddhists mobs.
There are 655,000 Rakhine people living in refugee camps in Bangladesh he said referring to the establishment of a TIKA-supervised project in Myanmar in order to serve the oppressed people there.
We sent 150 tons of food aids in the mountainous areas because people had left their homes and areas, which were burned by Buddhist mobs and fled to the mountains, he added.
We are currently seeking to rebuild these villages, he noted.
He also referred to serving Rohingya refugees in Bangladesh providing food, drink and clothing through Turkish relief efforts in order to fulfil the refugees' needs in there.
Expressing the Turkish approach in its cooperation and humanitarian policies, Çavuşoğlu said, "There are two concepts of civilization in the world: Reviving, serving people and children, help and support, while the other concept of civilization is: killing, colonization, and occupation, (..). We are with the first concept of civilization and we represent it, and we believe it will win," he said.
- ETHNIC CLEANSING OF ROHINGYA
According to latest data of the UN, 688,000 Rohingya -- who escaped violence -- have sought refuge in Bangladesh, since Aug. 25, 2017.
It is estimated that there were around two million Muslims living in Myanmar's Rakhine state in the 1970's, and the number has decreased to under 350,000 due to escapes from systematic attacks.
According to satellite images obtained by international human rights institutions, more than 350 Rohingya villages have so far been burnt in the area.The refugees are fleeing a military operation in which security forces and Buddhist mobs have killed men, women and children, looted homes and torched Rohingya villages. According to Bangladeshi Foreign Minister Abul Hasan Mahmood Ali, around 3,000 Rohingya have been killed in the crackdown.
Along with all official institutions, Turkey distributed more than $10 million to the Rohingya camps in Bangladesh, according to Mehmet Güllüoğlu, the head of Turkey's Disaster and Emergency Management Authority (AFAD).